Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Henry VII

Henry Tudor, Earl of Pembroke, later Henry VII, was born on the 28th of January in Pembroke. Through his thirteen-year-old mother, Margaret Beaufort, he was a descendant of Edward III.
Henry spent fourteen years in exile in France before invading England and winning the crown at the battle of Bosworth in 1485. On January 18, 1486 he married Elizabeth of York, eldest daughter of Edward IV, in a bid to unite the houses of York and Lancaster and strengthen his own claim to the throne. But this did not quite bring an end to the Wars of the Roses and Henry would have to go into battle again to keep his throne. The pretender Lambert Simnel claimed to be Richard, Duke of York and backed by John de la Pole, Earl of Lincoln raised an army. In 1487 Henry defeated the last Yorkists at the battle of Stoke and captured Simnel, who was sent to work in his kitchens! The next pretender, also claiming to be Richard Duke of York appeared in 1490 and played cat and mouse with Henry until his capture and death nine years later. Henry successfully put down the Cornish Rebellion in 1497, thus ending the last real threat to his authority.
Henry had several children most of whom died young.  After his death on April 21, 1509 his son Henry VIII succeeded him.

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