causes to the Wars of the Roses.
[The War of the Cousins, other term of the Wars of the Roses].
Richard of York descended from maternal side from Edward III’s second son,
since the the Lancaster King Henry VI descended from the third son of
[children of John of Gaunt and his misstress,
Between York and Somerset grew intense animosity because of
And York had been a capable commander.
York returned from Ireland [where he was appointed as
[that’s how I call it when you march with armed men to meet the King]
Admitted, this armed march was not an uprising against
the King to ”go for the throne” [as sometimes is assumed],
, because he was still highly in favour.
Somerset remained in his position, probably due to Queen Margaret’s
sympathies for him, while York was arrested.
However, the King was lenient with him, not imprisoning
or punishing him further.
It was humiliating, but at least he was not imprisoned or
had to face trial.
However, York was further embittered, since Somerset was still
the star and he returned to his castle in Ludlow.
Partly from this York/Somerset animosity, the Wars of
the Roses broke out in 1455.
SEE UNDERLYING TWO INTERESTING PROCLAMATIONS
OF RICHARD, DUKE OF YORK.
To read it easier:
York first sent this general proclamation at 9th of january.
When that didn’t work, he sent a stronger proclamation
at 3th february, where he openly accused Somerset and showed
clear hostility to him.
[The Paston Letters, page 96]
Forasmuch as I, Richard Duke of York, am informed that
the King, my sovereign Lord, is my heavy lord, greatly displeased
with me, and hath me in distrust by sinister information of mine enemies,
adversaries, and evil-willers, where[as] God knoweth, from whom
nothing is hid, I am, and have been, and ever will be, his true liege-
man, and so have I before this, divers times, as well by mouth as by
writing, notified and declared to my said sovereign lord: And for that
this notice so comen unto me of the displeasure of my said sovereign
lord is to me so grievous, and I have prayed the reverend father in God,
the Bishop of Hereford, and my cousin the Earl of Shrewsbury, to come
hither and hear my declaration in this matter: wherein I have said
to them that I am true liegeman to the King my sovereign lord,
ever have been, and shall be to my dying day. And to the very proof that
it is so, I offer myself to swear that on the Blessed Sacrament, and
receive it, the which I hope shall be my salvation at the day of doom.
And so for my special comfort and consolation I have prayed the said
lords to report and declare unto the King’s highness
to send hither to accept it. In witness whereof I have signed this
schedule with my sign manual, and set thereunto my signet of arms.
Written in my castle of Ludlow, the 9th of january, the 30th year of
the reign of my sovereign lord, King Henry the Sixth.
[The Paston Letters, page 97]
[See also Selections from the Sources of English history, pages 118 and 119]
[from Selections from the Sources of English history, page 117:
”From the moment that Richard, Duke of York, became a political leader he was opposed to the Beauforts; first to the Cardinal, and later to his nephews John and Edmund, successively dukes of Somerset. The odium of losing France fell on the court party, and in the winter of 1452 York determined, under cover of popular discontent, to strike at his rival, the then Duke of Somerset, Edmund. At the beginning of February he sent a letter from Ludlow Castle to the burgesses of Shrewsbury, in which he accused Somerset of inefficiency and of plotting against him. He still professes himself a loyal subject of Henry VI. ; no claim is based on his genealogical tree; and his friends are simply asked to help him in pulling Somerset down. The enterprise failed, and York, after a reconcilation with the king on 10th March, promised that in future when he wanted redress he would proceed according to law. SOURCE.—Historical Letters. Ed Sir H. Ellis. London, 1824. First Series, vol i. p. 11. ]
Right worshipful friends,
I recommend me unto you; and I suppose it is well known unto you, as well by experience as by common language said and reported throughout all Christendom, what laud, what worship, honour and manhood, was ascribed of all nations unto the people of this realm whilst the kingdom’s sovereign lord stood possessed of his lordship in the realm of France and duchy of Normandy; and what derogation, loss of merchandise, lesion of honour and villainy, is said and reported generally unto the English nation for loss of the same; namely [especially] unto the Duke of Somerset, when he had the commandance and charge thereof: the which loss hath caused and encouraged the King’s enemies for to conquer and get Gascony and Guienne, and now daily they make their advance for to lay siege unto Calais, and to other places in the marches there, for to apply them to their obeisance, and so for to come into the land with great puissance; to the final destruction thereof, if they might prevail, and to put the land in their subjection,which God defend. And on the other part it is to be supposed it is not unknown to you how that, after my coming out of Ireland,1 I, as the King’s true liegeman and servant (and ever shall be to my life’s end) and for my true acquittal, perceiving the inconvenience before rehearsed, advised his Royal Majesty of certain articles concerning the weal and safeguard, as well of his most royal person, as the tranquillity and conservation of all this his realm: the which advertisements, howbeit that it was thought that they were full necessary, were laid apart, and to be of none effect, through the envy, malice and untruth of the said Duke of Somerset; which for my truth, faith and allegiance that I owe unto the King, and the good will and favour that I have to all the realm, laboureth continually about the King’s highness for my undoing, and to corrupt my blood, and to disinherit me and my heirs, and such persons as be about me, without any desert or cause done or attempted on my part or theirs, I make our Lord Judge. Wherefore, worshipful friends, to the intent that every man shall know my purpose and desire for to declare me such as I am, I signify unto you that, with the help and supportation of Almighty God, and of Our Lady, and of all the Company of Heaven, I, after ‘long sufferance and delays, [though it is] not my will or intent to displease my sovereign Lord, seeing that the said Duke ever prevaileth and ruleth about the King’s person, and that by this means the land is likely to be destroyed, am fully concluded to proceed in all haste against him with the help of my kinsmen and friends; in such wise that it shall prove to promote ease, peace, tranquillity and safeguard of all this land: and more, keeping me within the bounds of my allegiance, as it pertaineth to my duty, praying and exhorting you to fortify, enforce, and assist me, and to come to me with all diligence, wheresoever I shall be, or draw, with as many goodly and likely men as ye may, to execute the intent above said.
Written under my signet at my castle of Ludlow, the 3rd day of February.
Furthermore I pray you that such strait appointment and ordinance be made that the people which shall come in your fellowship, or be sent unto me by your agreement, be demeaned in such wise by the way, that they do no offence, nor robbery, nor oppression npon the people, in lesion of justice.
Written as above, etc.,
Your good friend, R. YORK. To my right worshipful friends, the bailiffs, burgesses and commons of the good town of Shrewsbury.