what's left of Sandal Castle
York apparently wasn't the sharpest crayon in the Plantagenet box b/c instead of staying nice & safe behind the walls & nyaah-nyaah-ing at Margaret's peeps, he decided to come out & play. Legend has it this is where that kiddie song comes from about the Duke of York having 10,000 men & marching them up to the top of the hill & marching them down again. This was the battle of Wakefield & both York & his 2nd son, the 17 yo Edmund, Earl of Rutland, were killed. His wife's bro, Salisbury, was captured & executed on New Year's Eve.
As if truce-breaking during the celebration of the birth of Christ wasn't a black enough mark, Margaret then had York & Rutland posthumously beheaded so that she could slam their heads down on pikes at the main gate to his city of York & she made sure there was a crown on York's head (don't know if there was glitter involved in this craft project). Peeps was appalled. This just wasn't nice. Margaret thumbed her nose at her detractors & got Jasper Tudor to venture out of the safety of Brittany w/ an invasion force to help her trounce these uppity Yorkists once & for all.
Margaret's troops went a-looting thru the Midlands, making peeps give her the finger lots, & met up w/ Warwick's force at, ironically, St Albans. This is why there are 2 of these battles & this natch is the 2nd. The Yorkists got trounced, Warwick was all RUN AWAY RUN AWAY!, & stupid Henry was found afterwards sitting under a tree waiting for some peep to come by & tell him what to do next. Margaret scooped him up posthaste, but twas obvs he was all useless as usual, so she let her 7 yo son Edward preside over the swift treason trials of a few captured Yorkists, incl the poor peeps who'd just done their duty & stayed w/ the lackwit king, & determine how they should demise. Edward was all for axe-ing the lot of em, & Margaret smiled & nodded & patted him on the head & said there's Mummy's good lad! Yes, we certainly shall cut the heads off those steenking Yorkists! What a fine king you'll be!
Meanwhile, Edward of York met up w/ the tattered remnants of Warwick's forces & they decided to make a detour to London. London was all GO TEAM YORK! & welcomed the young Yorkist heir w/ enthusiasm, showering him w/ cheers, chicks, & coin, 3 of the things he liked best. Edward did the same thing his daddy had done a few yrs back, strolled into Parliament like he owned it, slapped his gauntleted hand on the throne, & said MINE! But then he added, evil councilors, my arse! The king is a fruitcake & the She-Wolf of France is a menace! THEY NEED TO GO & I'M THE PEEP TO GIVE EM THE BOOT! What say y'all? Ya gonna crown me, or ya gonna keep twiddling your thumbs & let the warring continue? Hey, I can go to Burgundy to lollygag & point & mock at y'all being governed by a lackwit HA HA Then whatcha gonna do?
Parliament didn't hmmm long this time b/c peeps were all throwing their hats in the air yelling KING EDWARD YEAH! & said OK & hauled him off to Westminster Abbey & hastily dropped a crown on his pate & then said GO GET EM! So Edward & Warwick (AKA The Kingmaker as history has named him) suited up & went off to meet up w/ those irksome Lancastrians again.
The morn of the mtg a natural phenomenon called a parhelion occurred. It looked as tho there were 3 suns in the sky instead of just one.
example of a parhelion
They were superstitious peeps & were all OMG that's a bad sign, we're sooo doomed RUN AWAY RUN AWAY! Edward said pffft, is not, tis a bad sign for Captain Marguerite & her ilks, b/c dontcha get the pun here? We got 3 suns up there, & how many sons of York are left? Why, my good self, & my little bros George & Richard, of course (they were currently hiding out in Burgundy, being too little to play war games just yet). Tis a portent of victory for the House of York YEAH! Now let's get busy & trounce them dastardly Lancastrians good! GO TEAM YORK!
Ironically twas the death of Christ when Edward got his shot at Captain Marguerite's forces, on a blustery Easter Sunday morn when the snow ran crimson w/ all the spilt blood b/c this was the biggest battle of the Wars of the Roses. This was the battle of Towton & the Yorkists super-trounced the Lancastrians. Margaret, who was waiting in York w/ her DH, DS, & some peeps, was all O SHIT! when they heard & scampered off immediately to go hide behind the blue peeps again. Edward marched on York to remove the rotting heads of his rellies from their pikes & send em to be buried w/ the rest of em at Fotheringhay Castle. He replaced them w/ fresh Lancastrians heads, most notably that of John, Baron Clifford, who'd bragged about running thru Edward's little bro Edmund at Wakefield.
Edward dashed back to London in triumph & got a nice official coronation that summer whilst his peeps mopped up the few remaining Lancastrian strongholds. Warwick was all gleeful b/c he was the new king's premier advisor, Edward putting him in charge of all the good stuff as a reward for helping him gain his throne, & he immediately began scouring the continent for a suitable bride for the lusty young monarch to commence breeding heirs.
Then he wasn't gleeful at all b/c Edward made him look stupid. Warwick was all excited over the prospect of the fat dowry of a princess called (I am not making this up) Bona of Savoy & told the council all about it, chuffed w/ his good self. Then Edward said aw shucks Cuz TYVM but whilst you were away I kinda went & got hitched.
Edward's new bride was totally unacceptable. She was older than him, a widow w/ 2 young sons, AND she was a Lancastrian to boot! Her father was a plain old knight by name of Richard Woodville, who'd had the good luck to snag the widowed Jacquetta, Duchess of Bedford, who was briefly married to Henry's bestest warrior uncle b4 he demised. The DH, Sir John Grey, had been killed at St Albans fighting for Henry's side. Peeps was appalled. It just wasn't DONE for a king to marry a commoner, no matter how smokin' hot she might be. Rumor had it Elizabeth Woodville wouldn't let Edward get her into a horizontal position, so he proposed & secretly married her at her parents' house. AND this was even worse than Eleanor of Provence & the Lusignan sibs, b/c Elizabeth was one of TWELVE children!
Elizabeth Woodville, Edward IVs queen
Warwick began tearing his hair out as the besotted Edward started hurling rich plums at his new in-laws. 7 yo Catherine Woodville was given the richest matrimonial prize in the realm, 10 yo Duke of Buckingham, Henry Stafford. Lands & money were tossed at the already married sibs, Anthony, Anne, & Jacquetta. Lionel was given a nice bishopric b/c he was inclined to a church career. The piece de resistance was when 17 yo John was married off to the 70 yo widowed Duchess of Norfolk! Jaws were dropping all over England. The only consolation was that Elizabeth had already produced 2 sons & came from a remarkably fecund set of parents, so there were high hopes of 11dy6 little Yorkists posthaste.
Girls every man jack of them! Twas quite disappointing when Elizabeth, Cicely, & Mary came along. Not only that, Warwick was mighty irked at all the Woodville preference & how Edward, having grown up, no longer relied upon him as a daddy figure & chummed round lots w/ Elizabeth's bro Anthony, when he wasn't off whoring w/ his Lord Chamberlin, William, Lord Hastings. Even making a brilliant match for Edward's unwed sis Margaret as Duchess of Burgundy was met w/ a meh nice job, Dick, TYVM. So he got his peeps together & had the temerity to imprison the king for his own good w/ that tiresome evil councilors line! Other peeps frowned at such behavior & b4 ya knew it, Edward had talked his way out of it & made a show of forgiveness to all involved.
Then there was Warwick's kids. He had just 2 girls, Isabel & Anne, set to share out a fat inheritance w/ some lucky hubby. Edward's younger brother, George, Duke of Clarence, wanted to marry Isabel, & the other brother, Richard, Duke of Gloucester, wanted to marry Anne. Edward said um NO. Warwick was untrustworthy & George no one was too fussed over b/c he tippled too much & was rather lazy. Edward rather liked bro Richard but he couldn't very well say OK to him & then put up w/ George's pouting.
George pouted anyway. He was like that. He got buddy-buddy w/ Warwick & b4 ya knew it, they were off in France cozying up to Captain Marguerite. Warwick let George marry Isabel, but he saved 14 yo Anne to marry Henry & Margaret's son Edward, now 17. Then they proceeded to plan a nice invasion. George pouted more b/c he was dumb enough to think he was going to be Edward's replacement at 1st, but Warwick was going to reinstate mad Henry & make his other daughter the queen eventually. See what I mean about the turncoating?
Edward got taken by surprise (how I am sure I dunno) & ended up running for his life to his sister Margaret, Duchess of Burgundy, along w/ bro Richard & Anthony Woodville. Meanwhile, the Woodville queen, who was hugely pregnant & could barely waddle, let alone run, fled into Sanctuary at Westminster Abbey. Sanctuary was when you could go hide out in a church & peeps were supposed to leave you alone. Usually they did (Becket being a notable exception) & there she finally gave birth to the heir (tediously) Edward.
Warwick plonked confoozled old Henry back on the throne & executed Elizabeth's father & bro John. The She-Wolf was barely settled in enjoying herself when Edward came storming back over. This was the battle of Tewkesbury, & young Prince Edward of Lancaster, as well as Warwick, were kilt, & Henry taken prisoner & shoved into the Tower.....