Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Elizabeth Woodville

(1437 - 1492)
The White Queen
  • Was married to Sir John Grey who fought on the side of the Lancaster’s in the Cousins War (the War of the Roses)
  • After her Lancaster husband was killed in a battle against the York family, she proceeded to marry the York King Edward IV
  • Edward IV and Elizabeth married in secret, and there were continuous rumours throughout her life saying that she had bewitched the King into marrying her, a commoner
  • Her marriage to Edward IV produced a total of 10 children, which were added to the two sons she bore to her first husband
  • She claimed Sanctuary at Westminster Abbey twice – once when the previous King, Henry VI, was reinstated and Edward IV was in exile. And once after the death of her husband Edward IV.
  • Her two royal sons, Prince Edward and Prince Richard, were imprisoned in the Tower of London after the death of their father
  • Prince Edward was ostensibly there to await his coronation, however his Uncle (and ‘Protector’) changed his mind and claimed the throne for himself, becoming Richard III
  • The two Princes then disappeared – they are now known as the “Princes in the Tower” and it is unknown whether they died or natural causes, survived or were murdered.
  • Elizabeth’s daughter, Elizabeth of York, married Henry Tudor (after he defeated her Uncle Richard III) and gave birth to Henry VIII – making Elizabeth Woodville the paternal Grandmother of Henry VIII.
This post is part of my "Well behaved women rarely make history" series.

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