The basic narrative of the book is the course of the Wars of the Roses during the lifetime of Edward. The Battle of Towton was fought on Palm Sunday in bitter weather, and was the largest set-piece battle of the Wars of the Roses. The result is a convincing well-argued portrayal of one of England's most talented but perhaps least appreciated kings, focusing on his skills as a battlefield leader, an area in which he excelled. To make good on his curiously acquired title, Edward needed military success in a fight to the death. How Edward was educated for the military career that lay ahead for him is not known.
Edward was victorious, and the earl of Warwick was killed. Learning of their landing, Edward set out westward in pursuit. The Battle of Blore Heath 13 September 1459 , a Yorkist victory at which Edward was not present, took place not in Shropshire p. Henry, who had been captured in 1465 and placed in the Tower of London, was returned to the throne with real responsibility for government being upon the shoulders of the earl of Warwick. Over time, Warwick came to have differences with King Edward, differences that were sufficient by 1469 for Warwick to plot the overthrow of Edward.
That Edward was present at St Albans is attested by only one chronicle, and the lack of corroborating evidence makes the acceptance his presence as a battle observer somewhat problematical. In no battle in which Edward certainly took part was he other than on the side of victory. Nevertheless, Edward was able to enter London and was acclaimed king by his supporters on 4 March. In the various events of late 1469 and early 1470, Edward did command a military engagement in Lincolnshire against a northern rebellion instigated by his opponents. Absolute victory fell to Edward at Tewkesbury on 4 May. This immediately presents Santiuste with a serious problem - many of Edward's battles are quite hard to reconstruct. With Burgundian support, Edward invaded England in March 1471.
Henry is not described as kingly, not in his entourage, not in his attire, not in his demeanor. This was the Battle of Empingham, known also as Losecote Field, fought on 12 March 1470. As the eldest son of an exceedingly important peer of the realm and earl of March in his own right, Edward would assuredly have been provided with the education needed to succeed as the next duke of York. King Henry was captured at Northampton, but the actions of Edward in the battle escaped recording. At Barnet, north of London, a battle was fought in the fog of Easter Sunday 14 April. Orme, From Childhood to Chivalry: The Education of the English Kings and Aristocracy, 1066-1530 Methuen, 1984.
It is unfortunate that the battles of the Wars of the Roses are not more fully documented. This was truly a time of desperation for Edward. His opponents had moved northward and Edward pursued them. Rather than hide this behind artificially coherent narratives Santiuste examines the various surviving sources, in effect 'showing his working' as he attempts to produce a satisfactory account of each battle. Edward participated in a brief military action at Northampton on 10 July 1460 from which the Yorkist forces emerged victorious. .
Edward of Lancaster was killed and Queen Margaret was captured. The supporters of King Henry were not to be pushed aside easily, and a serious battle took place at Wakefield in Yorkshire on 30 December 1460. Edward then set out in pursuit of the earl of Warwick. The focus of this biography is on Edward's impressive career as a military leader. Compton Reeves Ohio University, Emeritus Page Added: December 2011. Edward, meanwhile, was not slow to plan his own return to the throne of England. .
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