Henry VI 1455-61


Yorks second protectorate

November 1455- feburary 1456

rewarded warwick the captain of calais, grants in wales where Somerset had his lands, bouchier also received prizes but Yorks protectorate still seemed cliquey


  • Yorkist st Albans victory
  • York wants to secure his power : he had only minimal nobel support, wanted to show good and impartial leadership to win them over. many were content to work with york as the battle had been blamed on somerset, helping to reduce tensions
  • reform promised: limits of expentiture of the royal household, to impress the commmons. this led to the queen being limited only 10,000 marks per annum. He also declared the Duke of Gloucester to have died a true subject as he had been immensly popular
  • lack of alternative: Duke of Exceter had been branded a traitor for conspiring with James I during the first protectorate
  • s. west situation: October - November Courtney's attacked the Bonvilles, the murder of Nicolas Radford the Courtneys were furious after Bonvilles heir married the deaghter of Salisbuury.. thyey then went on to take control of Exceter, then attackeing and defeating the Bonvilles atthe battle of Clyst. when York intervened Courtney was placed in the tower of London
  • Henry's poor health


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Margaret's moves against York

April 1456- MOA and her son left for Kennilworth castle, household of the queens choosing : Exceter, Devon, Wiltshire and Beaumont, as well as the heirs of those murdered at st albans.

August 1456- King joined her at Kennilwoth, the beginning of York losing his control and power as she was able to replace many of Yorks powerful men

Margaret wanted more neutrals on her side, and so made many dipolmatic and marriage alliances ie.  Buckingham was given an advantageous marriage through his son, who was to be married to Margaret Beaufort making their heir a claimant to the throne. Eals of Shrewsburby and Pembroke were also convinced to join her through these means as Shrewsbury's eldest son would marry Buckingham's daughter

Jasper Tudor appointed constable of Camarthen and Aberstwyth - offices previously held by York

Edmund Tudor - war against Sir William Herber and Sir Walter Devereux, elevated status as he married Margret Beaufort, niece of Edmund BEaufort, late Somerset - she was the richest heiress in england, immense wealth and power

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Margaret's moves against Warwick

October 1458- defied the government, breakdown of peace began

she wouldnt pay him, in attempt to get his men to mOutiny against him. instead he resorted to piracy, attacking ships of the hansa.

After being summoned to London, Warwick escaped claiming their had been an attempt on his life from Exceter, Somerset and Shrewsbury

this made the powerful Buckingham more certainly on her side

York was, after this, accused of Treason

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Areas of tension


  • feud between Edmund  Tudor vs Wlilliam Herbert + Walter Devereux
  • Tudor seized Camarthen Castle 
  • Devereux captured the castle with Tudor inside, Tudor died soon after


  • Yorkists wore padded Jackets
  • MOA moved to midlands, Henry joining in August 1456 at Kennilworth


  • LOrd Bonville married the aunt of Courtney
  • Bonvilles seeked alliance with York, heir marrying the granddaughter of Salisbury
  • COurtneys attacked Nicolas Radford, disrupting their evidence
  • Courtneys took control of Exceter
  • Battle of Clyst- Bonvilles defeated
  • York intervened, COurtney in the tower of London
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24th march 1458

Henry Vi's attempt to diffuse tensions:

york brought 400 men; salisbury brought 500; warwick brought 600; exceter and somerset 800

northumberland, egremont,sir ralph clifford, lord clifford jr brought 1500 between them

  • London patrols, men at watch all the time, forbidden to carry weapons, archers in and outside of the city to prevent outbreaks of violence
  • York and MOA
  • Somerset and Salisbury
  • Warwick and Northumberland
  • York and Nevilles to pay a chantry at st albans to pay for prayres to help sould of the dead to reach heaven
  • compensation to be paid to clifford, percys and somerst
  • neville + percy 4000 mark bonds to keep a 10 year peace
  • st pauls cathedral - service to thank for peace decended on England
  • thousands of armed men, showed hwo they were evenly matched
  • showed there were two clear sides, ready to fight if needed
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Breakdown of Peace,

Autumn 1458

  • Margaret began to dismiss Yorkist from positions of power
  • took control of royal revenue and official appointments

May 1459-

  • Queen called to arms, to meet at Leicester

June 1459-

  • she summoned a great council at Conventry, York, Nevilles and Bouchiers refused to attend.(thomas bouchier was the archbishop of canterbury)
  • those who didnt attend to be indicted
  • York planned for his own Royal council, to be held at Ludlow
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Battle of Bloreheath and Ludford Bridge

September 1459

  • Warwick arrives from Calais, almost killed by Somerset
  • Salisbury  and his 5000 men were  intercepted by the powerful Lord Audley's force of between 8-12,000, 
  • imitated feint in retreat, but crossing the brooke to give chase meant they were vulnerable to Salisbury's archers
  • sir william stanely sent reinforcements, but lord thomas stanley held back
  • 2000 men dead.
  • salisbury allowed his two youngest sons to take men back north with them but they were captured, weakening Salisbury's forces
  • York sent message justifying actions, blaming ills on eviil advisors
  • Court promised pardon for all who layed down arms, except those involved with the death of Audley

12th October

  • the Yorkists were vastly outnumbered, 3 to 1, royal army led by somerset, buckingham and northumberland
  • Calais men were reluctant to fight against the king, and switched sides
  • Yorkists fled when darkness fell, york and Rutland to ireland. March and nevilles to Calais 
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Parliment of Devils

november 1459

  • coventry parliment
  • 27 yorkist leaders were attainded, and disinherited their heirs - john de la pole, the son of suffolk, demoted from duke to earl for being married to yorks daughter
  • the lands of these leaders were given to loyal lancastrians ie owen tudor to be paid a pension of £100 per year, out of the estates of lord clinton; JAsper tudor given rights to lordship of Denbigh - previously yorkist
  • Wilshire (yorkist enemy) made lieutenant of ireland, he couldnt go there though because york was so popular
  • however, many of the nobility felt the disinheritance of the heirs was too harsh of a punishment 

this made York have nothing to lose, and is considered by many to be the point where York decided to chase the crown, determined to prevent the prince of wales from becoming king. the parliment of devils therefore resucitated the yorkist cause, and so when the three main leaders returned in june 1460, many kentish nobl men rose in support.  and upon arriving at London pn the 2nd of july, the gates were opened.

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Warwick's actions whilst York wad in Ireland


  • somerset attempted to replace him as captain of Calais however Kentish supporters warned him of Somerset's plans
  • Warwick captured Somerset's fleet unawared as they prepared t capture Calais from kent x2
  • lord rivers and son anthony woodville abducted by warwick and taken back to calais as prisonerrs
  • even when Warwick left for 2 months march 1460 to discuss plans with York the lancastrians still couldnt capture calsi
  • warwick, salisbury and rutland Captured coastal town of Sandwhich, after salisbury's brother lord fauconburg had already beheaded the roayl captain and made if effectively defenceless travelled to London to rescue the king from his evil advisors (primarily Wiltshire, BEaumont and Shrewsbury)


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York's return 1460- death

8th september 1460

  • returned under the royal banner
  • sword carried upward, like a king
  • placed hands on the throne possessively
  • expected applause but received none
  • archbishop of canterbury asked if he wished to see the king

16th september 1460

  • formally claimed the throne

Act of Accord

  • 24th october
  • York to be king after Henry vi, his own sons to inherit the crown
  •  rumours that edward was illegitimate
  • margaret in harlech castle with Jasper tudor and son, december, fled by boat to Scotland - welcomed by Mary of Guelders - James iii regent
  • however this meant MOA could gather sympathy in the north, devon and somerset joined her Northumberland + Clifford refused to deal with the military threat
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Battle of Wakefield + MOA's Northern host

30th December 1460

  • went north to deal with MOA'd northern host
  • York mistakenly decided to fight the norhtern host and exited his castle - but was outnumbered 5-1 men
  • rutland fled to wakefield bridge, but CLifford killed him there, as revenge for his fathers death
  • sailisbury's son Thomas Neville was killed
  • Salisbury was captured and later publically excecuted
  • all 4 heads were was sent to york, York's decorated with a paper crown
  • Edward was now the head of the Yorkist cause - he and Warwick still had possession of the king

Northern Host

  • ' a whirlwind of the north  ... a plague of locusts coving the whole surface of the earth'
  • yorkist propaganda inspiring fear
  • 2nd battle of St Albans, 17th Feburary 1461
  • defeated Warwikc's army, Lord Bonville captured and excecuted
  • King was left behind , returned to MOA
  • London refused her entry, allowing Edward to seize power
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Battle of Mortimers cross + 2nd Battle of St Alban

2nd feburary 1461

  • planniing to return to London ater death of his father
  • intercepted the earl of Wiltshire, Jasper and owen tudor and Wiltshire's army of breton, irish and french soldiers as they travelled to hereford
  • Edward was successful , owen tudor being excecuted as well as 8 other lancastrian commanders, however Wiltshire and jasper tudor escaped, they fled to Scotland

17th Feburary 1461

  • every lancastrian wearinging badge of edward prince of wales
  • Bonville and Kyriell who guarded the king were taken prisoner and excecuted
  • despite the king making a proclaimation about plundering, it went unnoticed 
  • London refused the queen entry - fear of her Northern Host
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Edward becomes king

Since Henry's forces had murdered York, Edward was justified in stating the Act Of Accord had been broken - and therefore he didnt have to wait for Henry VI's death to seize the crown - as his legal heir

26th Feburary 1461

  • London receives him

3rd march 1461

  • council of canterbury, norfolk and Warwick agreed he must become king
  • the next day publically crowned
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protectorate pt 2


  • parliment demanded an act of resumption in 1456, the already hostile nobels wouldngt comply and resented York.
  • so rejected that he resigned in feburary 1456

When the king recovered in Feburary, York maintained his position of chief advisor, Warwick remainign the captian of calais

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moa vs york pt 2

Hope of reconciliation?? despite York and buds being removed from governement?????

  • york renewed as lieutenant of ireland
  • rewarded for properties lost (to the tudors etc)
  • when french were suspected to be planning attack on the coastline - york and buds were appointed to muster infantry and archers
  • yorks daughter married to the duke of suffolks son
  • salisbury, chief steward in northern parts of lancaster - included in defences against scotland
  • warwick remained the captain of calais
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warwicks actions pt 2

Battle of Northampton 10th July 1460

  • Lancastrians taken by surprise, no time to get northumberland, or clifford's armys : supported by buckingham, shrewsbury,beaumont, some percys 
  • yorkists supported by :norfolk, new lord audley, thomas bouchier - archbishop of canterbury, legate coppini, bishops of london, exceter, lincoln, salisbury, ely + rochester
  • attempted to negotiate, but was rejected by Buckingham
  • Heavy rainfall meant the  Lancastrians guns did not fire, allowing the yorkists to win
  • Lord grey secretly defected to the lancastrian side, but warwick knew of this in advance and sso his men didnt attack Grey's men
  • Buckingham, Shrewsbury, Egremont, Beaumont dead - however only 300 were killed in total out of 10,000
  • MOA and son fled to Harlech castle in wales
  • 16th July 1460, they returned to Londo with the king, having been consistant with his promises, Warwick had alot of South eastern support
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