Henry VI

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Henry IV
Hazz & Ruthh
Under-mighty Monarchy
The first 16 years of reign, Henry was a minor. He always needed guidance
When he became of age, he was assisted Edmund Beaufort, Duke of Suffolk and Duke of Somerset
The effective running of government was left to ministers. This caused tension because of jealousy of
power, which the king couldn't control.
Not checking feuds led to the death of Henry's uncle- Duke of Gloucester. This shows Henry's lack of
power of judging people and situations.
He was misunderstood:-
Cardinal Beaufort offered to lend Henry money in return for friendship. Over 200,000 was
paid, Henry only gave half back
Serious rivalry between York and Somerset led to the civil war
Mishandled the war with France which resulted in the loss of Normandy and the fall of
Margaret of Anjou had a domineering personality which made Henry look weaker. Many resented
the Queen, especially because of the relationship which she had with Suffolk.
King sort advise from his decreasing nobility whilst Margaret brushed off the excluded.
Over-mighty subjects
York was a blood relation to the King and a vast owner of land which made him a claim to the throne.
He was also a capable politician, warrior and father of healthy sons.
Most nobles wanted to get more land and power but York differed as he had a bigger ambition.
Over-mighty subjects included those who wanted to control the crown but not actually be king.
Somerset, Gloucester, Edmund Beaufort.
However, the King was the only one to give power and reward.
Divide and rule was the method was the method in which the King could give or withhold rewards.
This worked under a strong king as the King normally acted as ref and intercepted arguments. This
failed because Henry was weak and indecisive which allowed nobles to become over-mighty.
The war of the roses shows that Henry was no longer in control of his nobility and it was their political
rivalry and greed which turned into civil war.
Weak Personality
Although Henry learnt the art of kingship through Warwick, he still failed in most areas of Kingship.
For example:-
Failed to secure the coastline
Didn't secure peace and effective law and order

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Henry IV
Hazz & Ruthh
He never casted an army against a foreign enemy
He was a fool of God
He left the Kingdom military in the hands of others- especially Gloucester and Bedford
Didn't live up to his father's reputation ­ he only showed authority when he rode through
London with nobility against his own people in 1450 which was better known as Cade
Relied too much on nobles who he had chosen
He was manipulated easily ­ demonstrated when he had his…read more

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Henry IV
Hazz & Ruthh
Favourites - Somerset, Suffolk and Henry Beaufort. Jealousy increased due to massive debt, so there
was little money to go around. There was also resentment from other nobility. People joined
opposing groups ­ not to attack the king but to simply remove those who could damage both King
and country.
Yorkist Challenge
York was excluded from power brokers at court.
Exclusion ­ Somerset and Suffolk were made head of the household which enabled them to
monopolise royal patronage.…read more

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Henry IV
Hazz & Ruthh
The rebellion collapsed but only after capturing and executed a number of courtiers- one of
whom was the King's treasurer.
Richard of York left Ireland without permission to take advantage of the crown's evident instablility.
September 1450, he returned to London- was greeted with public support.…read more

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Henry IV
Hazz & Ruthh
Margaret was determined to destroy York but apart from having his protector rights stripped, she
failed at first to banish him from court.
December 1453, Henry regained mental state.
Margaret persuaded Henry to exclude York from the decision making process on important matters
of State. Somerset was released from the tower and reappointed as Captain of Calais.
Henry was a puppet in his wife's hands. York fled North with the support of the Nevilles to raise an
army.…read more

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Henry IV
Hazz & Ruthh
After a brief battle, York, Salisbury and Warwick had to flee.
The Yorkist leaders left England- York in Ireland, Salisbury, Warwick and York's son Edward took
shelter in Calais.
The Parliament of Devils
Margaret persuaded Henry to call a parliament in Coventry in order to publically disgrace York and his
followers.…read more

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Henry IV
Hazz & Ruthh
Warwick fled to the Welsh border to join with York's son and heir Edward Duke of York.
Edward was determined to avenge his father's death- marched North from Gloucester to intercept
the Lancastrian army under the Earl of Wiltshire and Jasper Tudor, Earl of Pembroke.
Lancastrians were defeated by Edward at Mortimer's cross.…read more


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