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Medieval and Byzantine History Medieval and Byzantine History Forum - Period of History between classical antiquity and modern times, roughly the 5th through 16th Centuries


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Old September 29th, 2010, 02:28 PM   #1

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Richard III


richard iii and the war of the roses has always been one of my favorite time periods. richard iii, i believe, got a bad rep because he supposedly murdered his 2 young nephews so he could have the throne. i don't believe this. richard idolized his older brother edward and loved his nephews. i've read about the war of the roses from just about everyone's viewpoint who was involved. richard's, queen anne, edward, earl of warwrick and his brother, elizabeth woodville, margaret beaufort, elizabeth of york, even richard's mistress before he married anne. he is one of the only kings to be faithful to his wife (as far as we know). i believe elizabeth woodville was a driving factor in this war--her main concern was elevating her family, no matter what it caused. margaret beaufort was quite a schemer also. shakesphere depicted richard as an evil man who murdered 2 young boys out of greed. richard iii was made regent by his brother and i believe that is all he wanted at the time but elizabeth's actions (woodville) changed the course of history. i may be totally wrong but there has never been any true evidence of his guilt. the duke of buckingham seemed like the most obvious suspect to me. richard was grief stricken when his only legitimate son died only to be followed by his queen's death and then vicious rumors started that he poisened his wife so he could marry his niece elizabeth! if all he cared about was being king, he would not have led a suicide charge to get to henry tudor--who was surrounded by his men. he had to have known he would not survive the day and the way henry treated richard's body was disgraceful. there is a mock trial on utube about richard iii. it's a very long trial but he was found innocent, which i believe he was. what are everyone's thoughts about richard iii?? guilty as charged or innocent??
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Old September 30th, 2010, 04:29 AM   #2

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re: Richard III


There's no way to ever really know. We are also lumbered with the benefit/curse of hindsight. If he is innocent then there are an awful ot of convenient coincidences.
The evidence is largely circumstancial, but theres lots of it, and it all looks rather damning, but theres no hard evidence at all.

In my opinion, I do believe he did it. Not personally but a nods as good as a wink. Political opportunism. Not something he had planned or prepared for, but rather a snap decision when confronted by the reality of the situation.
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Old September 30th, 2010, 11:59 AM   #3

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re: Richard III


from all the accounts i have read about richard iii, it just seems really out of character for him to murder his nephews. i guess we will never know for sure..
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Old October 1st, 2010, 10:50 AM   #4

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re: Richard III


Probably not, hence all the mystery.
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Old October 16th, 2010, 06:49 PM   #5

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re: Richard III


Used to think he had'nt, now know he did. One thing, Richard was never made Regent, all he ever was legally, was protector of the realm and the person of the king. This gave him no powers of sovereignty, though he took them anyway. The acts he performed were illegal and tyranical, i.e. the murder of Hastings. He had no legal right to pass sentence on anyone, let alone execute without trial, as happened in this case. Trust, he did it.
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Old October 17th, 2010, 05:31 PM   #6

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re: Richard III


i thought edward iv did make richard regent?? it makes alot more sense to me that henry vii executed the boys or buckingham but henry had the most to gain. if he made elizabth legitimate, then her brothers had to be also--making them the heirs to the throne. henry couldn't have done that..
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Old October 18th, 2010, 07:25 PM   #7

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re: Richard III


It might not be completely out of character for Richard to have killed the Princes. He is the main suspect in the murder of Henry VI, whose death put Richardís brother Edward IV on the throne. Upon the death of Edward IV, Richard was made the Lord Protector of Edward V. In the summer of 1483 he order the execution of Baron Hastings.

Then in the late summer of 1483, he convinced parliament with the backing of bishop that Edward IVs marriage to Elizabeth Woodville was illegitimate and therefore the Princes were not in line for the throne. Killing the princes would make sure that they never grew up to challenge Richards claim, or that supporters of the Princes did not use their imprisonment as a cause for civil war.

Some believe he did not personally kill the Princes but ordered their death. If Richard ordered their death then Henry Stafford, the Duke of Buckingham most likely carried it out. At the time, Stafford was Richardís biggest supporter.

It is unlikely that Henry VII killed the princes, as they were never seen after the summer of 1483. Henry VII did not take the throne until 1485. It is odd that there would be no accounts of the Princes in the tower, or anywhere for over two years. Surely, someone would have seen them or cared for them if they were still alive in 1485. If nothing else, someone had to deliver food to the Princes. On the other hand, perhaps they were thrown in the bowels of the tower to starve to death.

In 1674, workers dug up a box under a stairwell in the White Tower during a remodeling project. The skeletons of two young people were in the box. King Charles II, believing them to be the two princes, gave them a royal burial. In the 1930s the bones were exhumed and confirmed that one skeleton was of a 12-13 year old and the other was of a 9-10 year old. The bones were re-interred and have not been touched since. If they are the two Princes then whoever put them in the box knows exactly how they died. Too bad we donít.
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Old October 19th, 2010, 08:25 AM   #8

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re: Richard III


Quote:
Originally Posted by kbear View Post
richard iii and the war of the roses has always been one of my favorite time periods. richard iii, i believe, got a bad rep because he supposedly murdered his 2 young nephews so he could have the throne. i don't believe this. richard idolized his older brother edward and loved his nephews. i've read about the war of the roses from just about everyone's viewpoint who was involved. richard's, queen anne, edward, earl of warwrick and his brother, elizabeth woodville, margaret beaufort, elizabeth of york, even richard's mistress before he married anne. he is one of the only kings to be faithful to his wife (as far as we know). i believe elizabeth woodville was a driving factor in this war--her main concern was elevating her family, no matter what it caused. margaret beaufort was quite a schemer also. shakesphere depicted richard as an evil man who murdered 2 young boys out of greed. richard iii was made regent by his brother and i believe that is all he wanted at the time but elizabeth's actions (woodville) changed the course of history. i may be totally wrong but there has never been any true evidence of his guilt. the duke of buckingham seemed like the most obvious suspect to me. richard was grief stricken when his only legitimate son died only to be followed by his queen's death and then vicious rumors started that he poisened his wife so he could marry his niece elizabeth! if all he cared about was being king, he would not have led a suicide charge to get to henry tudor--who was surrounded by his men. he had to have known he would not survive the day and the way henry treated richard's body was disgraceful. there is a mock trial on utube about richard iii. it's a very long trial but he was found innocent, which i believe he was. what are everyone's thoughts about richard iii?? guilty as charged or innocent??
I used to think he was innocent too. But, the truth is we'll never really know. Also, I learned that I was judging him by 21th century standards, i.e. an uncle wouldn't murder his own nephews, etc. All the things you said above. He was a fifteenth century warlord and was fighting for his own survival and that of his son. He spent most of his life fighting. He must be judged within the context of his times not within the context of ours.

If you like historical fiction, Josephine Tey wrote a good novel about Richard III. It is about a British detective, I believe, who is laid up and "investigates" Richard III and the murder of his nephews. He too comes to the conclusion that Richard was not guilty. It was this novel that first got me interested in Richard III.

Last edited by Clemmie; October 19th, 2010 at 08:56 AM.
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Old October 19th, 2010, 10:39 AM   #9

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re: Richard III


i have never read that richard iii was suspected of henry vi's death--i thought his brother, edward ordered that? actually, i don't believe either brother really wanted henry vi dead. he was mentally ill and completely unable to rule. he was supposed to be a kind and gentle man but left alive, rebellions could arise (as they already had). i believe the earl of warwick was leading them after his break with edward--because of edward's secret marriage to elizabeth woodville?? it's been a while since i read about the war of the roses..
i would imagine those bones were the prince's but i still don't believe richard ordered their murder. that will always be a mystery..
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Old October 19th, 2010, 08:25 PM   #10

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re: Richard III


Edward may have order the death of Henry but someone had to carry it out. And that would be his brother, Richard. At least he is the main suspect. Of course the official records say Henry died of natural causes. However, when his body was exhumed in the eatly 20th century they found his skull was smashed and still matted with blood and hair, indicated massive blunt force trauma to the head causing death. The death of Henry is another mystery in the War of the Roses saga.
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