Attempted assassination of the Earl of Warwick, November 1458

On 9 November 1458 the was an attempted assassination of the Earl of Warwick. It occured amid tension between the rival factions. The Earl was able to evade the would be assailants, making his way to the safety of Calais. 

Tensions between the rival parties in court built even after the Loveday procession of March 1458. The kings attempt at reconciling the different parties had a short-term effect.

Compensation orders were made against the Yorkists, and both factions had agreed to maintain the peace. It was a hollow promise. In the north, it served only to encourage the feud. In London, the large retinues accompanying the magnates continued to be ever present. At some point, those retinues would clash.

Attempted Assassination of Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick

That happened on 9 November 1458. The English Chronicle states of the assassination attempt:

“[On 9 November], the King and Queen being at Westminster, there occurred a great quarrel between Richard Earl of Warwick and men of the King’s household, so much so that they would have slain the earl [had he not] escaped to his barge and went soon after to Calais, of which he had been made Captain shortly before by authority of Parliament. Soon afterwards the young Duke of Somerset, by canvassing those who hated the Earl of Warwick, became captain of Calais, and a privy seal was directed to the earl in discharge to him of the captainship; however the earl, for asmuch as he had been made captain by authority of Parliament, would not obey the privy seal but continued exercising the office for many years after…”
The Earl of Warwick evaded harm and made his way to Calais. It was a stark reminder to him and the other Yorkist Lords that the political differences between themselves and the court party could quite easily prove to be fatal.

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