Talk:Edward IV of England

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How can the descendants of the Duke of Clarence be considered the legitimate claimants to the throne, when Clarence was attainted, as were his children? RickK 03:26, 12 May 2004 (UTC)

Clarence was born legitimate, as were all his children. Deb 17:44, 12 May 2004 (UTC)
It doesn't matter that he was born legitimiate, he was attainted, and that denies him or his progeny rights to succeed. RickK 02:17, 13 May 2004 (UTC)

Actually, though attainder denied right to succeed in peerages, which are gifts of the monarch against whom the attainted has made crime in order to get attainted, it is not so clear that attainder denies the right to succeed to the kingship. In medieval case law of "fundamental laws", crimes were not reasons to exclude from royal succession (kings actually were big criminals often :) However, in this case, if Ed4 was illegitimate and thus occupied the throne illegally, then a treason against him was not treason, but an attempt to rectify the matters, and Clarence's attainder was baseless. 22:18, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Who was edward iv's nephews?

I know that. You asked why the article described him as "legitimate", and I told you. Deb 11:19, 13 May 2004 (UTC)
Operative word is "claimints". They have no "legitimate" claim to the throne. RickK 01:14, 14 May 2004 (UTC)
Operative word is "legitimate". The article doesn't use the phrase "legitimate claimants". I suppose it's possible it may have said that some time in the past, but not when you asked the question. Deb 16:58, 14 May 2004 (UTC)


"It is suggested that the real father may have been an archer called Blaybourne." Note the use of the passive of non-attribution in this statement. Wetman 13:35, 30 Jul 2004 (UTC)

This is possibly the most ridiculous piece of nonsense that has ever been written in English history! Actually - and this is true - I have a second cousin who is 5 feet tall. While she is small for a woman her parents are both tall - her father is over six feet tall and her mother 5 feet nine. Does this mean that she is not their daughter? No, of course it doesn't! Her mother's mother was also very small for a woman! (doh!) You do not have to physically resemble your parent to be their child! (Surely this is obvious?!) It's simple genetics!

The idea that because Edward was apparently much taller than his father must mean he is illegitimate is utter and complete rubbish! Furthermore, no-one has ever seen a picture of Edward's father or mother as none exist, so no-one can possibly make any value judgment in regard to that!

I saw that piece of nonsense on the telly about this. The idea that the Duke of York's wife would risk everything (including her own life) by having an extramarital affair with a complete nobody quite simply beggars belief. This nobody in question would certainly have had to have had balls to do the deed that's for sure, because if it were true (which I'm quite sure it is not) then they are the first things that he stood to lose if he got caught. This was the fifteenth century. You get caught messing with Royalty in the fifteenth century you lose your life. And copulating with the wife of the Duke of York would certainly qualify as that!

Do people really think that the Duke of York would have been so stupid as to have not realised that his wife had been unfaithful if she had have been? If he had really not seen her for several months (as that TV nonsense suggested) then I think he would have known! (Presumably this prat thinks the Duke tied a knot in it for a few months like all virile young men do - of course he wouldn't have seen his wife (oh no of course not!) no way she could have possibly visited him on campaign (oh no of course not!)). Richard is not known for playing away from home! And what evidence is there of Cecily Neville's promiscuous tendency? None! I'm sure she was capable of remaining faithful to her husband, and I'm quite sure she did. History does not portray Richard as stupid! Nor does it portray him as tolerant of weakness. He would not, I am quite certain have raised his wife's bastard as his own and called him his heir!

What I really cannot understand is the complete lack of empathy or understanding that some so-called historians have for the people they study. Marriage for royalty in the fifteenth century was a political act. It was important for heirs to be produced. It was important for them to be legitimate. Very very important. A married royal princess is not going to sleep with a servant! Catherine of Valois and Jacquetta of Luxembourg were widows! Their alliances (note: after their husbands were dead!!) were allowed purely because their lovers were nobodys and if children were produced they wouldn't be a direct threat to anyone important!

Can it not be understood that some people are capable of keeping their pants and knickers on?! Not everyone is desperate for sex!

Johnpretty010 (talk) 00:32, 23 August 2011 (UTC)


OK, I'm certainly no historian, but I'd like to query the neutrality of the "Consequences of illegitimacy" section. This section presents a rebuttal of the claims of a TV programme, and presents the rebuttal as fact. Quotes: "the documentary is factually inaccurate", "the programme suddenly rushes into stating (wrongly) that...", "The reason the makers of the documentary go down the wrong track...", "This is where the programme appears to neglect important facts." and so on.

I see two cases. (1) The position advocated by the documentary has so few adherents that there is no dispute that needs to be NPOV'd. In which case there is also no need for a nine-paragraph rebuttal of a position that nobody holds. So I presume (2), that the position advocated by the documentary is held by (at least) a non-negligible minority, in which case we need to reword for NPOV.

Does this seem reasonable? — Matt 20:41, 20 Nov 2004 (UTC)

I agree. The section on the possible illegitimacy of Edward is far too long. The problem, I feel, (dare I say this?) is that this article has been "got at" by the Ricardian element. Because of an earlier debate as to whether Richard III claimed Edward IV was illegitimate in making his own claim on the throne, someone tried to prove that Edward IV had been illegitimate in order to vindicate Richard, and then someone else spent an inordinate amount of time trying to prove the opposite, possibly with a similar aim. This is one of those historical mysteries, a bit like "Did George III marry Hannah Lightfoot?", on which too much time has been spent - or at least, too much for an encyclopedia. But take care when you attempt to NPOV, because there are a lot of people out there with axes to grind.

The rebuttal is presumably presented as fact because it is fact, as it's simply a matter of law. I'm sure many people who watched the television programme believed it, which is why a lengthy rebuttal is useful (if not necessary), but NPOV only applies to opinions, not legal facts. The claims made in the programme are effectively "pseudo-law", which any real lawyer in Britain will tell you is utter nonsense. (And the fact remains that, regardless of the exact nature of the law concerning legitimacy, the current occupant of the Throne is determined by the Act of Settlement 1701, not by legitimate descent from mediaeval kings.) Proteus (Talk) 13:01, 21 Nov 2004 (UTC)

OK, but have a read of this section from NPOV:
If we're going to characterize disputes fairly, we should present competing views with a consistently positive, sympathetic tone. A lot of articles end up as partisan commentary even while presenting both points of view. Even when a topic is presented in terms of facts rather than opinion, an article can still radiate an implied stance through either selection of which facts to present, or more subtly their organization--for instance, refuting opposing views as one goes makes them look a lot worse than collecting them in an opinions-of-opponents section.
We should, instead, write articles with the tone that all positions presented are at least plausible. Let's present all competing views sympathetically. We can write with the attitude that such-and-such is a good idea, except that, on the view of some detractors, the supporters of said view overlooked such-and-such a detail. If we can't do that, we will probably write stuff with so much contempt that subsequent edits are going to have a hard time doing anything but veiling it.
Do you believe that the "Consequences of illegitimacy" section presents the competing views sympathetically? — Matt 13:46, 21 Nov 2004 (UTC)
It could probably do with being less condescending and more objective, but to present this "hypothesis" as anything other than utterly wrong would be misleading to the reader. Proteus (Talk) 15:06, 21 Nov 2004 (UTC)
It would, however, be NPOV. — Matt 15:59, 21 Nov 2004 (UTC)
Stop being so ridiculous. Many people in the UK believe that Arson in Her Majesty's Dockyards and Treason are capital offences. They aren't. The death penalty for those crimes has been abolised. It is not POV to state this in an article - it's simply the truth. We'd look absurd if we presented the situation as anything other than a popular misunderstanding. You seem to be suggesting that the NPOV policy mandates that we give as much credibility to these beliefs as to the actual state of affairs. That's simply ridiculous, I'm afraid. NPOV does not overrule objective truth. This isn't a "dispute", it's simply ignorance, and should be treated as such. Proteus (Talk) 16:12, 21 Nov 2004 (UTC)
Hey, many historians have doubted Edward IV of England ligitmacy well before the documentary (and not all of it orignates from propaganda spread by Richard, the documentary just gives the argument further weight and that view must be reflected. Hell I can prove to you that recyclying is a wasteful activity but it is still invalid on Wiki to have the Recycling state "Environmentalist believe (wrongly) recycling saves paper.." it cant be done... because it is expressing a point of view. Remember what Jimmy Wales says about NPOV "Perhaps the easiest way to make your writing more encyclopedic is to write about what people believe, rather than what is so. If this strikes you as somehow subjectivist or collectivist or imperialist, then ask me about it, because I think that you are just mistaken." [1], even if one person let alone a group of educated scholars believes something, that view MUST be reflected unbiasly. It is for the reader to make up their mind. - UnlimitedAccess 16:32, 26 May 2005 (UTC)
They've doubted his biological legitimacy, but that's completely irrelevant. Under English law, a child is the legitimate child of its father unless the father disowns it at birth, as it is legally assumed that a married woman's child is also the child of her husband. As Edward's father did not disown him at birth, he is legally legitimate, regardless of his actual parentage. Even if it were proved beyond any doubt that someone else was his biological father, his legal father would not change. And even if it were possible to make someone retroactively illegitimate, it wouldn't matter, because the current monarch is not determined by legitimate descent from William the Conqueror but by legitimate descent from the Electress Sophia. This is what's stated as fact, not the discussion over who was his biological father, and not knowing this is why the documentary can truthfully said to be talking complete and utter nonsense. Proteus (Talk) 17:29, 26 May 2005 (UTC)
Well Dr Jones nor the documentary holds the stance that Mr Hastings should be king, the documentary admits to being an exercise in alternate history. "Baldrick" spends the last part of the documentary talking about his thoughts on fate and the thin thread of consequences that lead to recorded history and to our own lives. Your defending that Michael SHOULDNT be king... but no one is argueing he SHOULD be. The documentary simply expresses Dr Jones findings (and assuming there are correct) that if the rules had been followed to the letter we would have a different bloodline on the throne, the doco was not an exercise to incite revolution. In other words your argueing against a point neither me, Dr Jones, the documentary or anyone else I have seen has tried to convey. - UnlimitedAccess 04:14, 27 May 2005 (UTC)
Thanks for working on this — it's much improved! — Matt Crypto 16:31, 29 May 2005 (UTC)
Hey thanks - UnlimitedAccess 12:17, 1 Jun 2005 (UTC)
I'd have to argue that it's not irrelevant. The point of mentioning it is that Richard III managed to have his nephew, Edward V, deposed on the grounds of his biological illegitimacy and nothing else. If he also claimed the same about his brother Edward IV, presumably it would carry the same weight. Deb 18:01, 26 May 2005 (UTC)

How was Ed5 biologically illegitimate? 22:18, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)

No, as I explained below, it's completely different. The claim about Edward V was that Edward IV and Elizabeth Woodville were not married. If that was true, Edward V and his brother were bastards, and incapable of inheriting the throne. The claim about Edward IV is that he was the son of (who?) by an infidelity on the part of the Duchess of York. In such circumstances, however, he is still legally the son of the Duke of York, unless the Duke of York claimed Edward was not his son. john k 12:34, 1 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Hey, hey...chill! And please avoid personal attacks. I'm not suggesting that we give equal credibility to this or that claim. What I am suggesting is that we "give credibility" to neither, in the following sense: we refrain from labelling either position as "objective truth" or "utterly wrong", but we describe the different positions. For example:
Although it is a fascinating study of alternate history, the documentary is factually inaccurate, and we can safely say that as of 2004 the monarch on the English throne is a legitimate ruler.
Could be reworded something like:
Most historians disagree with the thesis of the documentary, arguing that it is factually inaccurate. Furthermore, the critics argue, for a variety of other reasons, we can safely say that the current monarch on the English throne is the legitimate ruler.
Note how, without taking sides, the dispute is described neutrally in a way that leaves the reader with the understanding that this is a fringe theory (say). — Matt 16:57, 21 Nov 2004 (UTC)
But don't you both agree that the whole section on the illegitimacy theory is way out of proportion to the rest of the article? And isn't that in itself POV? Deb 18:31, 21 Nov 2004 (UTC)

"The rebuttal is presumably presented as fact because it is fact, as it's simply a matter of law. I'm sure many people who watched the television programme believed it, which is why a lengthy rebuttal is useful (if not necessary), but NPOV only applies to opinions, not legal facts. The claims made in the programme are effectively "pseudo-law", which any real lawyer in Britain will tell you is utter nonsense."

- As an aside from the specific debate above, I strongly disagree with the implications of this passage. Matters of law are very rarely "simple". If you mean to suggest that 'laws' (whether common law rules, custom or even statutes) are always "facts" in the sense that it is impossible for competent lawyers to disagree about their interpretation or their validity then I think that you are plainly wrong, at least to the extent that no practicing lawyer would agree with that view, nor would any legal theorist I know of.

Indeed, given that the English law in question is a matter of pure custom (if you leave aside the Act of Settlement, which the biologically legitimate heir could argue was illegitimate in itself, being passed by a Parliament which 'illegitimately' expanded its powers during the 17th century under an illegitimate monarchy, and was assented to by an illegitimate monarch (Queen Anne, I think) ) then it is all the more open to controversy. Essentially, the rule that a child born within wedlock is legitimate unless expressly disowned by the father is a 'rule' because that was the done thing, and no more. It is at least open for 'Ricardians' to attempt to argue that that approach was just 'bad law' and shouldn't be followed: perhaps esp in the light of developments in biological understanding, which we can apply retrospectively to find that it was more likely than not that Edward's father was some random archer.

Maybe more pertinently, there is more than one meaning to the word 'legitimate'. I don't need any legal basis to say 'The Poll Tax is "illegitimate" because it's not determined by ability to pay' or whatever. All the program was saying was that *if* you think that true biological inheritance is important in determining who is the rightful monarch (as all monarchists would, at a meta level) then, really this Australian chap should be king. (Which is of course a heavily qualified 'should').

"This is one of those historical mysteries, a bit like "Did George III marry Hannah Lightfoot?", on which too much time has been spent" - I'm also not sure about this. It's true that whatever the legal position, there's no merit whatever in trying to question the de facto line of succession. But as 'Baldrick's programme pointed out the strength of the evidence of Edward IV's biological illegimacy casts a huge amount of light on the motivations and mindset of Richard III: which is interesting. Sure, you can say the Truth Behind the Princes in the Tower is also a historical irrelevancy, but then you could start to say that about anything. -- 11:47, 3 Jun 2005 (UTC) (Danno)

Illegitimacy again[edit]

The debate on illegitimacy is real, and there are good arguments for both sides. Can we relabel the section of this page from 'Controversies' to 'Allegations of Illegitimacy', or something? Note that if we do, we have to change the link on the Henry VII page, too (which I couldn't find). The debate on Edward IV's legitimacy is set out well, with both arguments presented and analysed, on this webpage: Captain Wanga! (talk) 09:31, 2 April 2014 (UTC)

This comment would be better placed at the bottom of the page rather than at the beginning of a discussion section that was last used 8 years ago. It took me ages to find out what you had written? Please could you start a new section? Deb (talk) 09:47, 2 April 2014 (UTC)

Whether or not the Duke of York might have returned from the wars, surely it is possible that Edward was conceived either before or after his father's departure. Going back 38 weeks from April 28 gets you to August 5 of the previous year. This is during the time of York's supposed absence, But if he was conceived on August 21, that makes him only 16 days early, and if he was conceived on July 13, about three weeks late. This is hardly outside the range of possibility, is it? And would a baby who arrives two weeks early be so noticeably weak that it would definitely be noted? I am rather dubious of this. At any rate, it should at least be noted what Proteus has repeatedly said - that Edward's biological parentage makes no difference as to whether he was York's (and thus Edward III's) legitimate heir-in-law. john k 18:37, 29 May 2005 (UTC)

That's not quite true though, is it? As I said above, Richard III had Edward V and his brother removed from the line of succession on the grounds that they were biologically illegitimate because their parents were not legally married. And if you look back through the years, you find many other examples of illegitimate sons who were acknowledged but were not candidates to succeed their fathers, purely on the grounds of their illegitimacy. Deb 10:58, 30 May 2005 (UTC)

Ed5 and his brother certainly were not biologically illegitimate, they were (allegedly) legally illegitimate. No one has denied them having been biological sons of Ed4. 10:37, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)

That's different. An illegitimate son of the king is, by definition, the son of a king outside a legal marriage. The son of a married woman is automatically the son of her husband unless he takes affirmative action at the time of birth to disclaim it. Since the Duke of York did not do this, Edward is legally his son, whether or not he is biologically his son. This is, of course, rather ironic - a man's legal heir is thus his wife's son by her lover, rather than his own son by his lover - but nevertheless the way it works. john k 12:29, 1 Jun 2005 (UTC)

I understand what you're getting at now. Deb 18:05, 1 Jun 2005 (UTC)

English Peerage Law Cases, judged by House of Lords during recent centuries, has tended to exclude wife's child from succession of wife's husband, if it became revealed that the child is bastard, even though the "father" never disclaimed. In this, House of Lords has been making contrary case law re peers compared to the law re all others. 10:37, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)

If it is revealed - that means, if clear evidence is found that the child is someone else's. That is clearly not the case for Edward IV, who was never, so far as I am aware, accused of being illegitimate during his lifetime, and, indeed, there are various possible ways that Edward could have been the son of the Duke of York even if his supposed absence from Rouen is accepted. (Let me add that, given what we know of the Duchess of York, her having committed adultery seems quite unlikely). john k 19:04, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)

I am not saying that this is what the House of Lords will do in this case. I presented that experiential knowledge because it says to what direction their judgment probably wouold go, were they ever to decide the case and were such sufficient revelation occur.

Duchess of York was of course her husbands best companion, which may have been a reason that he would have accepted a bastard. Things happen to even the most loyal women. Actually, the most telling point of bastardy was Ed4's features compared with Rich (they could however be explained by genetics from all sides, ncluding Cicely's family and such Rich's ancestors who were tall and blond).

As you have repulsed all evidence of bastardy claims at that era, I have to remind that:

  1. Clarence rebelled, his father-in-law supported the claim to succeed H6, one basis was that Clarence was the legitimate York heir. Others at that time had seen the features' difference between Rich and Ed4.
  2. Rich3 has been said to have based his claim to Ed4's illegitimacy, somewhat silently (perhaps due to his mother, he preferred to use Butler/Talbot woman).
  3. Duchess Cicely has been reported to have threatened to reveal Ed4 as bastard, when he disobeyed her by marrying E.Wydeville.

Of course all these could be explained as power politics. And accusatiomns of bastardy were common in those days, as in many others too. But amazing coincidence with the difference in physical features. 19:59, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)

But Edward and Clarence were supposed to be very alike physically so does that mean that Clarence was also a bastard? Maybe they looked like their mother's family? And Richard and Edmund looked like their father? We all know families where some children totally resemble one parent and the other children look like the other. It would be interesting to find out if there is any chance that Richard Duke of York was not around at Clarence's conception, although I think you'll find that was not the case Ferrymansdaughter (talk) 22:06, 25 January 2010 (UTC)

Another royal succession now under discussion is that of Olav V of Norway.

As I am genealogically more interested in biological descent, I would track out whether Ed4's descendants somehow are descendants of earlier English kings, and possibly also of Richard, Duke of York 10:37, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Huh? Of course they are descended from John of Gaunt, through Henry VII. john k 19:04, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Plz remember that Ed4 had other daughters and descendancy too, not only that from Elizabeth of York. Actually, as Cicely's descendants, they are descended from Gaunt - but not of Margaret Holand as H7 was. Ed4 had other daughters and descendancy too, not only that from Elizabeth of York and H7, who are the only having H7's blood. I am however desiring some more than only Gaunt. I would be happy if someone shows that independently of Ed4, they (or some of them) would descend from Ed Langley and/or from Philippa of Clarence. 19:59, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)

To monarchs then and today, I believe it is important to be truly blood descendant of those who have ruled the country earlier. For the past few centuries, this has been probably yet more important because of nationalism. Current monarchies, as figureheads, draw so much of their position from history and tradition (and they do not rule - thus justification does not come from arms any longer) that true biological descent from historical kings, predecessors, is the main justification. I think that is particukarly important for those countries which became independent in 19th or 20th century, after centuries of foreign oppression (countries such as Norway, Greece, Bulgaria, Hungary). 11:22, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Not so incredibly important. Paul I of Russia and Gustav IV Adolf of Sweden were both very widely believed not to be the sons of Peter III and Gustav III, respectively. This did not affect their status. Also, centuries of foreign oppression of Hungary? john k 19:04, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Everything is relative. But Paul I and Gus4 were not successful and loyalty to them was weak. Besides they lived just before the era of nationalism, and they had much military power, contrary to the figurehead hypothesis. And, finally, I think it affected their status somewhat, but not fatally.
Gus3 actually was very enthusiast of his descent from Vasa kings. His son's descent was helped, in Gus3's eyes, by that of his mother, Princess of Denmark, from all sorts of ancient Scandinavian kings.
What do you think would have happened in the decades of Slavonic nationalism and Panslavism to Paulie, if he had ascended then, say in 1890's?? Interesting exercise of alternative history. Perhaps certain Russians have made the revolution and elevated a Russian-born tsar to the throne. Or perhaps the communist revolution would have happened earlier...
I don't see how wild speculation helps anything. The fact is that from 1762, no Russian monarch had any Russian blood in them at all. And it is not as though descent actually prevents accusations of foreignness - the Hanoverians were certainly descendants of James VI and I, but nevertheless were considered foreigners for a long time. john k 22:41, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)

On what do you base the allegation that from 1762, no Russian monarch had any Russian blood in them? Do you believe that Paul I was not the son of Peter III?? Have you checked the other descents? Such as Catherine having Russian blood?? 01:25, 27 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Yes, centuries of foreign oppression in Hungary: Turkey, Austria (Germans). No native Hungarian (capable to speak Magyar) on the throne for centuries. Natives wanted very much when the era of nationalism came. If you question this oppression fact, I must wonder... 19:59, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Under Turkey, certainly. But under Austria they were not being ruled by "Germans." They were ruled by a King of the Habsburg dynasty, and the kingdom retained its ancient rights and privileges except for a brief period (1849-1867). That the Habsburgs could not speak Magyar is not terribly relevant - until the mid-19th century, most of the Hungarian nobility could not speak Magyar either - they spoke Latin as their principal language.

I do not believe that "could not speak Magyar either". They lived in Hungary, thus it is extremely unlikely they spoke only Latin. Have you any research to support your allegation? 01:25, 27 Jun 2005 (UTC)

The position of British royal family rests partially on their place in nationalist and traditionalist feelings. They have deftly moved, from 1800's, from marrying Germans to have more and more British blood... As such, they actually resemble the English monarchy of latter half of 15th century. 19:59, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)

How is this relevant? They would be no less British if it were demonstrated that Edward IV was not the son of Richard, Duke of York. Given the Act of Settlement, which means that there are hundreds of more senior descendants of Edward IV than Elizabeth II running about, not being monarch of the UK, I don't see why this piece of information is terribly significant. john k 22:41, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Have you difficulties in seeing the picture? Parallel with this latest century and with 15th?? 01:25, 27 Jun 2005 (UTC)

The Rouen letter, supposedly found in 2011, has not been mentioned here. It gives a very good indication that Richard was absent for 5 weeks, in the middle of possible conception. (talk) 06:17, 12 March 2016 (UTC)

Richard might have been illegitimate but that doesn't mean Elizabeth II is not supposed to be queen, because she is not a descendent of Richard ForeverMe (talk) 23:13, 14 January 2017 (UTC)

Spittings from and to Deb[edit]

With all due respect, that's not particularly relevant to this article and should be discussed elsewhere. Deb 16:59, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Dear Deb, having seen your contributions and your comments around here, I am not extremely convinced of your qualifications to assess relevancy. 18:31, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Very amusing. Deb 20:07, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)

It's kind of extraordinary that Shakespeare said exactly what the researchers in Rouen cathedral 'discovered', down to the methodology - "and, by just computation of the time, Found that the issue was not his begot". Presumably this was a commonly known historical fact (in the sense that Edward was illegitimate as a biolgical probability) that somehow got forgotten, and has essentially been staring everyone in the face all these years.

On what do you base this? In Richard III, the claim is clearly presented as being an outlandish falsehood - to show that Richard would impugn the virtue of his own mother if it will help him take the throne. There is no historical evidence that Richard made this accusation at the time, either. You'd think that Clarence would have been hard on that line when he was rebelling against Edward, at least. john k 19:04, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Yes, in Shakespeare, but knowing that Shakespeare, a century afterwards, had heard it, confirms that very probably it was more or less common knowledge in the late 15th century. In those centuries, they lived the time when everything became hazier and pieces of information were lost along time. And practically no historical research reviving precise knowledge from original sources. This is actually the usual development of legend - and as with legends, the facts preserved within the legend are usually things known by the contemporaries of the events themselves. 20:14, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)

It doesn't confirm anything at all. It is perhaps suggestive, but since we know Shakespeare messes with history in numerous ways in his plays, it is not evidence that this was an actual rumor, and it is even less evidence that the story is true. john k 22:30, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Let's not forget that Shakespeare is in effect a writer of historical fiction. No matter how good he is, he's not an historian. To believe everything he says is true is a bit like assuming that the tv show "The Tudors" is accurate. Ferrymansdaughter (talk)

Descendents of Edward IV and Henry VII[edit]

What sort of social rank would one have to bear in their family, in order to be a descendent of either?

How far up the totem pole, would you say?

This is intended to have broad answers and based on gradients of time and population, not going into specifics about exact descendents. About how common is their descent in the English or British genepool today?

I've noticed that American Presidents don't descend from either king, but the most common recent royal ancestor shared by many of us is Edward III. How common is it for anybody in the English or British genepool, to have a Protestant royal ancestor?

There is a general cutoff, isn't there?

Is it because of fratricide in the Wars of the Roses, the Tudors' "new men", or the Union of the Crowns, or the parliamentary union under Queen Anne (I can't think of any non-royal family descent from the Hanoverians within the UK)?

I'm thinking that there is a big difference between Plantagenet and Tudor descents, that the commons in all likelihood have the former and the latter is held by the lords. (just generally speaking) Then again, Tudor descent in the Welsh must be higher in general. I am further curious about pre-Royal Tudor blood in Anglo-British people today, since the status and/or concept of Welsh royalty/nobility is rather hazy in my mind. I found the Blevins aka Ap Bleddyn family of Powys in my ancestry, but have no real idea on what to make of it--or any other Welsh "native aristocracy". I might be able to find Stewart descent somewhere, from way back when. What percentage of Hanoverian background do you think that German colonists had in America?

On the British side, I have to go as far back as Welf himself...but any recent genetic relationship with the Hanoverians or the counts of Nassau are completely obscure. How does one research those other colonial people, such as the Hessians?

UK genealogy is relatively easy when focusing on English (and French) ancestries. What would a "national person" of Jerusalem (or Antioch, for example) in Crusader times be known as?

We say "American" for those Founders, but was there such a nationality-term for the Crusaders in their own domains?

I guess the term is supposed to be Levantine/Outremer, or "Crusader" as our national heritage says "Colonist"...

IP Address 11:53, 9 May 2006 (UTC)

Actually, millions are not directly descended from Edward III. He only lived seven hundred years ago. That is simply wishful thinking. There is a difference between being directly descended from someone and simply being a related. Direct descendent is from parent to child, grandparent to great grandparent and so on. A relative is aunts, uncles, cousins and siblings, people whom a person shares a common ancestor with now or sometime in past. Therefore, millions can be related to Edward III through a common ancestor but not directly descended. Furthermore, the early settlers to America were British, especially those that settled in Virginia. Some of the families had Plantagenet descent, however, they did not have any Hanover descent. The Hanovers took over during the 1700s and only allowed their royal children to marry other German noble families because they were German. It is unfortunate, however, whenever an individual becomes famous there seems to be tendency to make up a royal family tree for that person without any heavy research or conculsive evidence. Some of the Presidents could most certainly have ancient royal descent but not all of them. The population from people descended from Edward IV and Henry VII is extremely small. First, because both only lived six hundred years ago. Second, there is only twenty years in a generation. Third, they had several child, however only a few actually lived long enough to produced offspring. Fourth, most of those offspring that survived married other noble families or inbreed with other royal forgien families. Fifth, it takes a long time for a population to interbreed before it can claim descent from one individual. Seven hundred years is hardly enough time. And, finally, there are some Americans and British people who are descended from Edward IV and Henry VII but it is a pretty small percent. RosePlantagenet 15:00, 6 February 2007 (UTC)

You don't appear to be taking illegitimacies into account. For example, many Shetlanders, and those descended from Shetland emigrants, are descended from the Bruce family and from Robert Stewart - an illegitimate son of James V, and thus a descendant of Henry VII and Edward IV. And don't forget, in the days of droit de seigneur, those who were most powerful would produce the most (illegitimate) children. Many of these wouldn't be acknowledged, but the descent would be there, nonetheless. 'Royal blood' is a far more debased currency than some people imagine. Michaelsanders 15:12, 6 February 2007 (UTC)

There does not need to be a separation between legimate and illegimate children, as the statistics would count for both. If you can not prove it does not count. People can most certainly believe they are related to Edward III. Millions are through common ancestors. However, that does not mean they are directly descended nor should they believe that unless they can prove it. Edward III could have had illegimate children and the belief is he did. However, there is a huge debate as to who those descendents are or if they even existed. Lines can die out. Edward IV did have illegimate children, however, in both cases seven or six hundred years is not enough time for there to be millions of descendents whether they are legimate or illegimate. Henry VII did not have any illegimate children. The only two children of his who had several descendents were his two daughters. As for the Hanovers, the few illegimate children there were married into British noble families. The real trick is to do the math, look at how long ago these monarches existed and how many of their descendents actually produced descendents. Only 1% of the world's entire population as now is actually descended from European Royalty through an illegimate or legimate child. And one day millions possibly will be directly descended from the monarches of the middle ages but there has not been enough time. RosePlantagenet 16:36, 6 February 2007 (UTC)

But there are plenty of proven lines of descent - the Shetlanders en masse, as well as descendants of emigrants, are provably descended from James V, and thus Edward III and co. As for the Hanovers - there were plenty of illegitimate kids, quite a few of whom married rather poorly. Adam Hart-Davies (British t.v. presenter, for anyone who doesn't know) is descended from one of 'the little FitzClarences'. No, there aren't millions of descendants from these people, but there are thousands descended from Edward IV and Henry VII, and hundreds of thousands from Edward III. Michaelsanders 17:01, 6 February 2007 (UTC)
Point of order - Henry VII did have an illegitimate son (probably) called Roland de Velville. Funnily enough, I met someone on Saturday who claims descent from him. (That's just a matter of interest, by the way. I agree that these possible, potential descendants are in no way relevant to this article.) Deb 18:01, 6 February 2007 (UTC)
Well, this discussion was never relevant to the article, really - just started by someone who was asking a question, and continued by others who want to hash out various details. Does that matter? There's room for wikipedia to be a forum for intelligent discussion, as long as OR and POV don't bleed into the article.
I'd be very interested to hear about Roland de Velville - I've never heard of him (and thought that Henry VII was supposed to be stereotyped as the King more interested in money than infidelity), so would be interested to hear who the man was and why he is thought to be a son of Henry. Michaelsanders 18:18, 6 February 2007 (UTC)
Maybe I'll add something to the Henry VII article when I have time. Deb 20:55, 6 February 2007 (UTC)

Yes, you are right. There are thousands of people, the amount just depends on how long ago the individual lived. That was my point. Anyway, yes, I heard about him. That he was probably the illegimate son of Henry VII but because there seems to so much uncertainity about it, I never paid much attention. But, if that is true then more power to your friend that must have been exciting to find out for them. I agree potential descendents are irrelevant. You got to be able to prove royal descent. The number that can actually prove it is extremely small compared to the ones who can not. I am not sure why it matters to people much anymore. Being royal today does not mean anything anymore. RosePlantagenet 18:57, 6 February 2007 (UTC)

Thousands of descedants seems probable, millions is an exaggeration at best. However when you take into account descedants of Edward III of England there are always the extensive descedants of John of Gaunt, 1st Duke of Lancaster which include among others:

So the group of descedants would include almost every Iberian monarch since the beginning of the 16th century along with various royals, nobles and bastards claiming descent from them. User:Dimadick

Yeah, that was the point of the discussion when it started. However, some people seem to have become offended, which was never the intension. I can not blame them. Proving such a descent is not easy. RosePlantagenet 13:00, 7 February 2007 (UTC)

Is anyone offended? I didn't think so. After all, we all know that there are far more descendants of royalty in the world - whether it be thousands or millions, the latter of course becoming more likely as the time distance widens - than some royalists would like to think. Does that matter? If a person can trace a descent from any renowned person - be they royalty, scientist, philosopher, or even something unpleasant - then good for them. It doesn't change their standing in society of that person, it does no harm, and it gives the person an extra piece of interesting knowledge about their family. But it is no worse to not know where you came from, or to come from humble roots. Those can be fascinating, as well - to show you how radically the life of a family can change in such a short time. And your ancestry doesn't have to define your own life. There's no reason why it should, in modern society.
Well, that was a rather rambling post. Michaelsanders 17:21, 7 February 2007 (UTC)
But well said! Deb 17:38, 7 February 2007 (UTC)

Thank you, nice to see you agreed with my points, as you have just proved them in volumes. Well, said. I am glad no one was offended. You are correct, if a person can understood that their life and other people's lives are not defined by their ancestry, then they should just be happy with the interesting things they can find out, rather then trying to make things up. I am sure, Deb, your friend, was pretty excited when they found the proof of their Tudor descent. Yeah, and hopefully with more evidence. Probable examples without much proof are okay but they do not belong on encyclopedic site. Thanks again, you guys! This was a fun discussion. RosePlantagenet 18:49, 7 February 2007 (UTC)

Certainly was. Hope we can all do it again, sometime. Michaelsanders 18:53, 7 February 2007 (UTC)

"Then again, Tudor descent in the Welsh must be higher in general." I think you'll find this isn't true. Being half Welsh myself, I've never met a single Welsh person who claimed descent from the Tudors. Don't forget Henry Tudor was only one quarter Welsh, the rest was English (Beaufort) and French so not that much Welsh there although he played it up when it suited him. Also the Tudors were nobility and, particularly after Henry became king, therefore would have married into the Anglo Norman families, not into Welsh families. Ferrymansdaughter (talk) 22:22, 25 January 2010 (UTC)

Obscure heirs[edit]

Has anyone compilied a list of putative alternative monarchs (English/British and otherwise)? (Which would not necessarily include the effects of the Salic Law.) Partial lists could be parked on Failed history. Jackiespeel 17:18, 12 June 2006 (UTC)

Propaganda in support of Richard III[edit]

It is said that Edward IV was declared illegitimate to support Richard III, but that makes no sense as they were brothers.

And your point is? Deb 18:59, 28 October 2006 (UTC)

Edward IV's mother is said to have declared that Edward's father was not Richard, duke of York. However, she apparently insisted that the Duke HAD fathered her other children, including Richard. Boleyn (talk) 05:58, 22 May 2008 (UTC)

Illegitimacy and Legacy[edit]

The evidence of Edward's illegtimacy may nor may not be strong, but it is of no consequnce whatever compared the his legacy as a monarch. When Edward returned from exile in Flanders in 1471, he 'lived off his own'; that is he imposed no new taxes, there being no wars, and allowed art, particularly architecture to flourish as almost never before. Much of the Perpendicular architecture in our churches was produced between 1471 and 1534, most of it begun in Edward's reign. Astonishingly, the products of his reign between 1461 and 1470, 1475-1483 which were periods of peace, are ignored by most historians while WP deovted undue energy as to which side of the blanket he was conceived. It is most remarkable, for Edward's achievement of peace, like that of Thomas Jefferson, should be celebrated. Its artefacts are all around us. I know a little; ther is much more to be written. Roger Arguile 18:48, 3 December 2006 (UTC)

Talk about much ado about nothing. No offense, but the legitimacy of a man whose sons did not inherit, whose brother (Richard) did not leave sons and whose daughter provided only tacit legitimacy to a kingship won primarily by force seems to me to mean less than nothing. Force, back then, made many a choice for who ruled, as much or more than blood, or Henry VII would have had no right at all. Heck, I'm descended from Elizabeth, daughter of Edward I, but I can safely say I have no intention of trying to wrest England from the Windsors. I also have brown eyes when my parents have blue and green and don't look like either parent (but did look like my paternal aunt when I was younger). I was born 20 days early at a healthy weight. My son was nearly 3 weeks early at 8# and my daughter ten days late at 7.5#. Birthdates as a determiner of legitimacy when there's only a month or so blacked out? Weak. Even it it weren't, so what? It is all conjecture this far removed and no reason to get hot and bothered. Some think Edward might have been illegitimate? Noted. What proof do we have that any of the sons of kings were legitimate throughout history? (Okay, maybe with the porphyria). I mean, if you'll fool around your king with his first son, whose to say you don't on the rest? Stephanie Barr 19:46, 8 January 2007 (UTC)Stephanie Barr

I agree, it is much to do about nothing and after all this time it does not matter. It has been common knowledge for years that the Windors are from a junior line and are usurpers to the throne. The evidence about Edward IV is extremely weak, and I certainly do not agree with it. My point of view is slightly bias because I am a direct descendent of Edward IV and his brother George Plantagenet. However, to be fair, it may not belong in an encyclopedia because there is simply not enough evidence to back it up but it does not hurt to look at every point of view. Nothing from that period of time is ever for sure, and you can not always assume writings for the middle ages are always 100% accurate. If the writings were then these theories and debates would not exist. It is all a matter a person's point of view and what one chooses to believe. RosePlantagenet 18:44, 4 February 2007 (UTC)

Can we have some proper citations of Michael Jones's Bosworth 1485: Psychology of a Battle in this section, please, not references to the TV programme? Jones addressed the issue of possible prematurity: if a major heir was sickly or premature, it tended to be noted. Mancini was writing at the time, while Polydore Vergil, writing in Henry VII's reign, had an interest in denying the possibility of Edward's illegitimacy, as that would have undermined Elizabeth of York's claim, which Henry used to boost his own right-of-conquest. Silverwhistle (talk) 15:06, 18 March 2010 (UTC)


Although I have no objection to including the speculations of historians on Edward IV's legitimacy (though some of that Abney-Hasting's guff could be trimmed), I do find it slightly absurd that as much of this article is devoted to what possibly happened as to what definitely happened. I don't advocate the removal of the source-based legitimacy speculations, but surely someone could include more definites about the man, his reign, etc? Michaelsanders 15:12, 5 February 2007 (UTC)

Perhaps some of the details on the legitimacy stuff could be moved to their own article? john k 17:40, 7 February 2007 (UTC)
Would you say it is encyclopaedic, though, John? And might it not come under the heading of "original research"? Deb 18:01, 7 February 2007 (UTC)
Some of it seems to be cited (e.g. the documentary, the recorded claims regarding the Duchess threatening to swear him a bastard) - so, it would not be OR on our part to report that. But, with rather little in the article, there seems little point in dividing it further. If there was more to the article, as I suggested above...however, since I don't know much about Edward IV, I can't do so myself, which is why I asked others (I may try doing some research on him when I have more time, but I couldn't promise anything there). Michaelsanders 18:05, 7 February 2007 (UTC)
I think it's a due weight issue, not an OR issue. The stuff has been published. It's just dubious and not very important, and has been given a ridiculous sensationalistic spin. john k 20:49, 7 February 2007 (UTC)
I've shifted some of it to the article about the documentary, where it seems more apposite. Do you think that's acceptable? Deb 21:07, 7 February 2007 (UTC)
I think some of the removed details (e.g. location of Duke of York at approximate conception, under-grand baptism) could be mentioned in this article. By contrast, I'm not particularly happy about the inclusion of the opinion of a historical novelist. Most of the removal, however, seems good - though the article really does seem rather too short now (I know I keep carping about that, but it is a faintly ludicrous state of affairs that a man whom one would expect to have reams written about has such a sparse article). Michaelsanders 22:01, 7 February 2007 (UTC)
Yes, I know who included Sharon Penman. That contributor's motives were dubious and she is long gone, so if you wanted to take that reference out, I doubt that anyone would object. Likewise, if you wanted to put some of the other stuff back in... Deb 22:16, 7 February 2007 (UTC)
Done - removed the Penman reference, and added in the basic fact that York was away 9 months before Edward was born (with the counter that the baby could have been premature, or York could have had a holiday). The rest of the details are the opinions of the documentary makers, but the records are historical fact (which isn't the same as saying they are proof). Michaelsanders 23:08, 7 February 2007 (UTC)
I'd like to know if any serious historians give any credence to the idea that Edward was not York's son. But, anyway, I fully agree the article should be expanded. The issue, as always, is for somebody to do it. john k 23:10, 7 February 2007 (UTC)

On this always fascinating topic we seem to have got embarrassingly caught up on semantics, ALL of us. As we all know, Medieval Kings we're not really grounded strongly in common law when it came to inheritence, which is why some times subjects perfered safety to legitimacy. Anyone who has studied Henry VII knows his claim to the throne had a big mistress-sized hole in it. This whole talk-page has expanded because some people think Hastings should be King, and some think he has more Royal blood than Elizabeth II.

Should Hastings be King? Almost certainly not. Edward was accepted into the family as an heir, as we all understand, and so the throne was his rightfully. Has Hastings got more Royal blood than Elizabeth II? Its exceedingly possible, if not probable, and i won't go over the well-recited reasons.

The article should reflect that a family which normally snipped of lame shoots, somehow let one flourish into a King, and by doing so moved the line away from claimants who may have had more pure royal blood flowing in their veins. Henry VII's legitimacy was cemented by a marital tie with Edward IV, and if neither were rightful Kings in the true sense of the word, we should still be Catholic for goodness sake :P! Lets forget alligiances to monarchs we love from our university days and stick to hard facts with no POV, and one of those facts is that there is a man in Australia who possibly has more royal ancestry than Elizabeth II. I pray we sort this article out one-day! —Preceding unsigned comment added by Tefalstar (talkcontribs) 23:09, August 27, 2007 (UTC)


Through Philippa of Lancaster: Edward of Portugal, Infante Pedro, Duke of Coimbra, Henry the Navigator, Infanta Isabel, Duchess of Burgundy, Infante João of Portugal, Fernando, the Saint Prince and their various descendants.

Two things about this line. If the marriage to the Woodvilles is illegitimate, then this line is technically the one that would inherit the throne of England. The problem with the succession through Elizabeth of York, is that she could not take the throne herself after the death of Richard III, which makes her the eldest York daughter the next in line. The trouble is that Arthur was not yet born. It would then skip to the de la poles, and then all the way back to the Phillipa line as there were no more Yorks after the de la Poles. So in 1525, you would have John of Portugal take the throne as the eldest son of Phillipa of Lancaster. Interestingly enough by this line, Phillip II would inherit both Portugal (after the succession crisis) AND England, whereas in real life, he was technically co-regent. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Benkenobi18 (talkcontribs) 13:03, 2 February 2008 (UTC)

Murder of Henry VI[edit]

The article states it as a definite fact that Henry VI was murdered. That does seem to be the general surmise among historians, but I am unaware of any proof, so I think the statement should be weakened. This is an important issue since Edward IV is of course the main suspect. I will however wait to hear others' opinions before making any changes. Kevin Nelson (talk) 02:49, 7 May 2009 (UTC)

I think "privately executed" would be another way of putting it. Deb (talk) 11:47, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
I'm not so sure. To me, "execution" (even if private) implies that you are not denying you had someone killed. But Edward IV did seem to deny it. (Not that many people likely would have had the nerve to ask about it to his face!) I've made some changes on this point; any comments on them will be welcome. Kevin Nelson (talk) 14:37, 10 May 2009 (UTC)
Henry VI was either murdered or exceedingly clumsy in strolling on the Tower parapets, given the size of the fracture in his skull when he was exhumed in 1910.ScarletRibbons (talk) 03:43, 31 July 2013 (UTC)

New file File:King Edward IV from NPG (2).jpg[edit]

King Edward IV from NPG (2).jpg

Recently the file File:King Edward IV from NPG (2).jpg (right) was uploaded and it appears to be relevant to this article and not currently used by it. If you're interested and think it would be a useful addition, please feel free to include it. Dcoetzee 10:04, 14 May 2009 (UTC)

Now that is REALLY interesting. I've never seen this portrait before. It doesn't look much like any of the others and I think it has a definite resemblance to Richard III around the eyes. Ferrymansdaughter (talk) 22:29, 25 January 2010 (UTC)

Probably because it's a late 16C copy of a copy of a copy, and has slimmed him down quite alarmingly. The earliest surviving panel portraits of Edward and Richard are those in the Society of Antiquaries collection. Silverwhistle (talk) 15:14, 18 March 2010 (UTC)

Capture by Warwick in 1469[edit]

The article says that in 1469 Edward was captured at Olney. I was under the impression it was at Wolvey Heath in Warwickshire. The event is mentioned on the Wolvey page, and several Warwickshire websites. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:34, 28 October 2009 (UTC) If you have reliable references that say it was Wolvey, you should feel free to change the article. Deb (talk) 07:59, 29 October 2009 (UTC)

Successor First Time Round[edit]

In the info box for his first time as King it has his successor as Edward V - it should be Henry VI. If no one objects, or changes it first I will change it. Starlemusique (talk) 12:14, 3 May 2010 (UTC)

Three illegitimate children[edit]

What I would like to know is where these children are coming from? What is the source? I see that Grace Plantagenet is listed in Alison Weir's Britain's Royal Family, A Complete Genealogy but where are the others coming from. Also, how can Elizabeth Woodville be the stepmother of an illegitimate child?

"By unknown mother. Recent speculations suggests them as children by Lucy or Waite.

  • Grace Plantagenet. She is known to have been present at the funeral of her stepmother Elizabeth Woodville in 1492.[citation needed]
  • Mary Plantagenet, married Henry Harman of Ellam, son of Thomas and Elizabeth Harman and widower of Agness.[citation needed]
  • A daughter said to have been the first wife of John Tuchet, 6th Baron Audley.[citation needed]" -- Lady Meg (talk) 06:02, 6 February 2011 (UTC)

couple of points[edit]

According to the BBC History magazine no banns were called for the the marriage of Edward IV and Elizameth Woodville, so was it a legal marriage? The doubts of this would certainly make Richard IIIs claim to the throne reasonably good.

The circumstances of the death of Edward IV don't seem to have aroused a great deal of suspicion at the time. If Henry VIII, Edwards grandson is now thought to have suffered second class diabetes, could he have inherited this, via his mother, from Edward IV who possibly also suffered from this disability? The descriptions of later obesity etc, of both, seem very similar. AT Kunene (talk) 10:01, 26 April 2011 (UTC)

That sounds possible, though of course we will probably never know. I don't agree with you about the marriage, though. The "legality" of a marriage in the medieval period tended, I think, to depend largely on whether a bishop or Pope could be found to declare one way or the other. Just making a promise to marry someone (as Edward is said to have done to Eleanor Butler) could be considered binding - or not, depending what the Church decided. Deb (talk) 11:35, 26 April 2011 (UTC)
In the middle ages, the validity of a marriage does not depend on such things as marriage bans etc. You only need consent of both spouses to marry each other and consumation, i.e. the sexual union of the two.
A pre-contract, a mutual promise to marry someone, followed by consumation is a valid marriage, even if the marriage - for the time being - remains secret. This was true for the Edward-Woodville marriage and probably also for the Edward-Butler marriage. Str1977 (talk) 09:19, 3 March 2013 (UTC)


I have removed this sentence from the "Controversy" section: "Subsequent portraits depict Edward with a large rounded face and lantern-jaw whereas Richard of York is shown as having had thinner and more pointed facial features." With the recent reconstruction of Richard's facial features, it is now clear that there is a distinct likeness between the two kings. The portrait of Richard was always regarded as a little dubious in any case. Obviously I can't suggest, in the article, that they were in fact very alike, because that would be original research. However, since the original statement wasn't supported by any references and also appears to be original research, or at the very least POV, I think I am justified in removing it. Deb (talk) 17:29, 2 March 2013 (UTC) Who was edward iv's nephews?


Although I'm not particularly attached to the section header "Family", I don't like "Marriage and progeny" any better. Checked Wikipedia:Manual_of_Style/Biographies and there doesn't seem to be a hard-and-fast rule. Does anyone have a better idea? Deb (talk) 18:44, 10 March 2013 (UTC)

Since the marriage to Elizabeth Woodville is mentioned prior to that section, *marriage* doesn't need to be in that header at all. I agree *progeny* seems awkward. *Issue*? Also, since there are so many children, it might be a good idea to corral them all into a table; I've seen it done for less kids. ScarletRibbons (talk) 03:51, 31 July 2013 (UTC)

Unexplained removal of content[edit]

In the following edits Virgosky has removed content without explanation:

Adding another source for the marriage does not justify removing content about the children, even if the source added questions issue from the marriage (note there are other sources cited about the children, and we need to maintain WP:BALANCE). Please discuss this issue on the talk page before removing content again. HelenOnline 20:50, 17 October 2013 (UTC)

I would venture to suggest, though, that all the stuff about being ancestors of Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon really doesn't belong in this article. Deb (talk) 04:34, 18 October 2013 (UTC)
Thanks for your input Deb, I appreciate it. I have gone ahead and removed it as well as the part that singles out the one child in particular. HelenOnline 06:48, 18 October 2013 (UTC)


My attention was drawn to this paragraph:

Edward's marriage to Elizabeth Woodville has been criticized as an impulsive action which did not add anything to the security of England or the York dynasty.[1] Modern revisionists have attempted to read into the marriage of a political motive of some sort.[2] By this marriage, Edward raised the stature of the Woodvilles at court. He did not need to do this merely to assert his independence from the Earl of Warwick.[3] Edward's marriage to Elizabeth Woodville can really only be explained as the impulsive love-match of an impetuous young man.[4]

Charles Ross's book on Edward IV is used first as an illustration of revisionist theory and then as evidence of the opposite. Is the second sentence meant to finger B. Wilkinson as the revisionist? I think it could be clearer. Deb (talk) 11:23, 16 February 2014 (UTC)

Yes I think it is saying that (or trying to) and yes it should be re-written; if only because Wilkinson was writing far earlier than Ross and therefore could not be revising him anyway. Fortuna Imperatrix Mundi 11:30, 16 February 2014 (UTC)

This is pretty much the current historiographical 'state of play' today:
Christine Carpenter, for instance, argues against the idea that it had any political motivation, and that Edward's creation of a strong Yorkist nobility meant he did not need the relatively "lightweight connections" of the Woodvilles. Wilkinson, writing in 1964, described the marriage as both a "love match, and also a cold and calculated political move." Jack Lander suggested in 1980 that the King was merely "infatuated," echoing Kendall's view that he was gratifying his "lust."

Carpenter, p. 170 Kendall, p. 53 Lander,Govt p. 237 Wilkinson, p. 146
Fortuna Imperatrix Mundi 12:04, 16 February 2014 (UTC)

Wow, you've got a few books, haven't you? :-) Deb (talk) 14:31, 16 February 2014 (UTC)
Four. I release that small para to you under Creative Commons!!! Fortuna Imperatrix Mundi 15:07, 16 February 2014 (UTC)

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:Edward IV of England/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: Tim riley (talk · contribs) 12:18, 6 April 2015 (UTC)

Beginning first read-through. More soonest. Tim riley talk 12:18, 6 April 2015 (UTC)

This article is interesting and enjoyable, but it is a long way short of GA standard.

  • Lead
    • The lead falls down on two counts: it is not a comprensive overview of all the main points of the text, and it contains information not given in the main text. See WP:LEAD.
  • Citations
    • What makes this a certain Immediate Fail, I'm afraid, is the inadequacy throughout of the referencing. In paragraph after paragraph there are important statements that should be verifiable but are not, because no citations are given for them. A few examples (out of many more):
      • However, even though St. Albans is only 22 miles from London, the Lancastrians did not retake the capital city. Thus they forfeited to the Yorkists, in the eyes of the public, all their remaining legitimacy to the throne of England.
      • After spending a year in hiding Henry VI was finally caught and imprisoned in the Tower of London.
      • Since the marriage of Edward IV's sister, Margaret of York, to Charles, Duke of Burgundy on 3 July 1468, the Duke of Burgundy had been Edward's brother-in-law. Despite the fact that Charles was initially unwilling to help Edward, the French declared war on Burgundy. This prompted Charles to give his aid to Edward, and from Burgundy he raised an army to win back his kingdom.
      • and as he marched southwards he began to gather support, including Clarence (who had realised that his fortunes would be better off as brother to a king than under Henry VI). Edward entered London unopposed, where he took Henry VI prisoner. Edward and his brothers then defeated Warwick at the Battle of Barnet, and with Warwick dead he eliminated the remaining Lancastrian resistance at the Battle of Tewkesbury in 1471. The Lancastrian heir, Edward of Westminster, Prince of Wales, was killed on the battlefield. A few days later, on the night that Edward re-entered London, Henry VI died. One contemporary chronicle claimed that his death was due to "melancholy," but it is widely suspected that Edward ordered Henry's murder to remove the Lancastrian opposition completely.
      • Edward's two younger brothers George, Duke of Clarence, and Richard, Duke of Gloucester (later King Richard III of England), were married to Isabel Neville and Anne Neville. They were both daughters of Warwick by Anne Beauchamp and rival heirs to the considerable inheritance of their still-living mother, leading to a dispute between the brothers. In 1478, George was eventually found guilty of plotting against Edward, imprisoned in the Tower of London and privately executed on 18 February 1478: according to a long-standing tradition he was "drowned in a butt of Malmsey wine".
      • He also backed an attempt by Alexander Stewart, 1st Duke of Albany, brother of King James III of Scotland, to take the Scottish throne in 1482. Gloucester led an invasion of Scotland that resulted in the capture of Edinburgh and the king of Scots himself, but Albany reneged on his agreement with Edward. Gloucester decided to withdraw from his position of strength in Edinburgh. However, Gloucester did recover Berwick-upon-Tweed.
      • York was a direct descendant of Edmund of Langley, 1st Duke of York, the fourth surviving son of Edward III. The House of Lancaster was descended from John of Gaunt, the third surviving son of Edward III, and as such had a superior claim over the House of York. However, Richard Plantagenet's mother was Anne de Mortimer, the most senior descendant of Edward III's second surviving son, Lionel of Antwerp. Lionel had been the eldest son of Edward III to leave a surviving line of descent; as such, by modern standards, his line had an indisputably superior claim over that of his younger brother, John of Gaunt. By contemporary standards, this was by no means so certain; nonetheless, it allowed Richard and then Edward a good title to the throne.
  • Referencing
    • On top of that, such references as there are are inadequately presented. The four mentions of Desmond Seward are of no use without the details of his book. The Peerage is a self-published site and is not accepted as a WP:RS, page numbers are given in various forms (p. 168 -v- p146), the reference to the Guinness Book of Records takes us to a Wikipedia page, ref 59 is a long bare URL and so on.
  • Duplicate and triplicate links
    • The article is riddled with WP:OVERLINK. There should be no more than one link from the main text to any one article.

This article looks to me to have the potential to get to GA on a further attempt, but it needs a good deal of work first to address the points raised above. – Tim riley talk 12:59, 6 April 2015 (UTC)

Thanks Tim. funnily enough I just said something similar on your TP. Wel, see you soon eh! (But not that soon...). Cheers! Fortuna Imperatrix Mundi 13:02, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
I've always thought that Wikipedia's idea of a lead is stupid. It makes you regurgitate itself with a few more chunks. I don't want to read the same stuff twice. It's annoying.
There should be no more than one link from the main text to any one article. Say what? Since when does that apply to lovely fat history books with 100s of pgs? Confused as reviewer is contradictory in also saying there aren't ENOUGH refs. Now need nap. ScarletRibbons (talk) 17:57, 4 May 2015 (UTC)

Last edit[edit]

That's weird. I spotted that earlier but, when I looked at the article, it looked right. Must have been looking at the wrong end. Deb (talk) 14:48, 12 April 2015 (UTC)

Tbh I didn't really understand the original edit, or who had done what, which is whyi put the info in manually rather than undoing... know wot I mean? Fortuna Imperatrix Mundi 15:03, 12 April 2015 (UTC)

Cecily's marital history[edit]

This article says Edward IVs daughter Cecily was married 2x....1st to Margaret Beaufort's brother, John Welles, & 2nd to an obscure squire, Thomas Kyme (for which Henry confiscated her estates & banned her from court, as she was a naughty girl & didn't ask his permission 1st). Cecily's own article states she was married 3x....the 1st being to Ralph Scrope of Upsall, during the reign of Richard III, which Henry had annulled so that Welles could be rewarded with a princess bride for his participation in Buckingham's Rebellion & subsequent flight to Henry's *court in exile* in Brittany. That section in her article, however, has no citation, & weasel-ly says *Many published works fail to note this earlier, nullified, marriage.*

I'm chock-full of WOTR & PITT books, but have nothing specifically on Edward's daughters. I don't remember a whole lot on their marital history....Elizabeth of course married Henry VII instead of the French Dauphin, Mary died before she could marry a Danish prince, Cecily was supposed to marry a Scots prince but that alliance fell apart due to Uncle Dickon's Borders romp, Anne married a Howard instead of Philip the Fair & died young, Catherine married a Courtenay instead of Catherine of Aragon's brother & Henry VIII executed her son in the *Exeter Plot*, Bridget went into a convent.

Can anyone provide the source for the Scrope marriage & subsequent annulment that's in Cecily's article, so that Edward's (or Cecily's) article can be corrected? (Thought I might get a response here faster than I would posting on Cecily's article, & if it can be verified, should be added to Edward's.) TYVM. ScarletRibbons (talk) 10:29, 18 May 2016 (UTC)

For their being wed, see
Horrox, R.E., Richard III: A Study in Service (Cambridge, 1992), 295.
Fortuna Imperatrix Mundi 12:19, 18 May 2016 (UTC)

Talk page references[edit]


  1. ^ Charles Ross, Edward IV, p. 85.
  2. ^ Charles Ross citing pages 146-148 in B. Wilkinson's Constitutional History of England in the Fifteenth Century; at footnote 3 on page 87 of Edward IV, p. 87.
  3. ^ Charles Ross, Edward IV, p. 87.
  4. ^ Charles Ross, Edward IV, p. 86.