Richard turned to face Somerset, who was now faced by the entire Yorkist left; and at the same time some 200 spearmen, placed on the extreme flank by Edward to guard against such a move, advanced to attack Somerset in the flank. Somerset's force gave ground, then broke and fled. Somerset escaped to confront Wenlock, and in a rage slew him with his battleaxe. The 'main battle' now began to give ground, and when Edward's center began a general advance the Lancastrian army broke and ran.
Most of the Lancastrian nobles were captured and slaughtered, among them Prince Edward and Edmund, Duke of Somerset, the last male Beaufort. Queen Margaret was captured and placed in the Tower, where she remained for five years until ransomed by her father. Henry VI was murdered in the Tower shortly after the battle.
Edward proclaimed his seven-month-old son Edward Prince of Wales and sent Hastings with a strong force to take possession of Calais. Richard of Gloucester was rewarded with Warwick's lands and offices, while Clarence received the lands of Courtenay in the West Country and the Lieutenancy of Ireland.
Bosworth, Stoke, Blackheath and Exeter
Edward IV died in April 1483 when his son and heir, Edward V, was only twelve. Inevitably rival factions immediately emerged – the boy king and the court controlled by the queen mother and her relations, and Edward's favorites Lord Hastings and Thomas Lord Stanley, opposed by Richard, Duke of Gloucester, now the most powerful man in the kingdom, whom Edward IV had intended should be regent.
Richard acted swiftly. Moving south, he joined forces with Henry Stafford, Duke of Buckingham, and seized Edward V en route to London in the care of Lord Rivers, the queen mother's brother. Her son, Dorset, at once fled the country, while the queen mother sought sanctuary in Westminster Abbey. Within a month of Edward IV's death, Richard was Protector of the Realm.
In June Hastings was suddenly arrested and executed. Two weeks later Richard informed Parliament that Edward's marriage to Elizabeth Woodville was invalid due to an earlier marriage, and therefore Edward V was a bastard – which left Richard the rightful successor. Richard became Richard III, Lord Rivers was executed, and Edward V and his younger brother Richard, Duke of York, were placed in the Tower.
That autumn there was a revolt in the West Country, led by Buckingham, apparently in conspiracy with the exiled Henry Tudor, Earl of Richmond and now head of the House of Lancaster. (Henry could claim the throne, in right of his mother, Margaret Beaufort, as surviving male representative of the House of Lancaster, the Beauforts being descended from John of Gaunt.) Buckingham was supported by the Woodvillcs and Courtenays. Richard quickly and efficiently crushed the revolt, and Buckingham was executed. Henry Tudor withdrew to France, but in 1485, with about 3,000 French mercenaries, he landed in Pembrokeshire, where his uncle Jasper was earl. He marched quickly through Wales and the Marches, picking up considerable support on the way, and confronted Richard in battle for the throne at Bosworth in Leicestershire on 22 August 1485.
The two main forces drew up facing each other but both Henry Tudor and Richard III looked anxiously for support from the forces of the two brothers Stanley: those of Sir Willaim Stanley were visible to the north-west of the battlefield, and those of Lord Stanley to the southeast.
The battle commenced without the Stanleys, the opposing forces both making a bid for Ambien Hill. Richard's troops reached the ridge first, and his 'vaward battle' deployed on it in a defensive position. The 'main battle' followed, while the 'rearward battle' was ordered to take position on the left of this line as soon as possible, and to face due south.
Henry advanced to engage in an archery duel at long range, and Richard looked in vain for his 'rearward battle': the Earl of Northumberland had decided to avoid action until the Stanleys showed their hands.
As the archers began to run out of arrows, the two armies advanced to melee, and only now did the Stanleys move – to attack both flanks of Richard's line, while Northumberland remained immobile. Richard mounted, collected his bodyguard around him, and rode into the center of the enemy, intent on killing Henry Tudor or dying like a king. Unhorsed in the marsh, Richard was soon overwhelmed by superior numbers and killed. The battle ceased when his death became known, and his army melted away with little or no pursuit. Lord Stanley took the circlet indicating Richard's rank from the dead king's helmet and, placing it on Henry Tudor's head, proclaimed him King Henry VII.
Реферат опубликован: 16/05/2009