Earl of Oxford released from The Tower of London, 1469

On 7 January 1469 John de Vere, 13th Earl of Oxford, was released from captivity in the Tower of London. TheĀ Earl of Oxford, had been imprisoned in the Tower of London in 1468. His crime had been treason, and he went as far as confessing that he had plotted against King Edward IV.

The Earl of Oxford’s motives for opposing Edward IV

Oxford’s motivation for plotting against the King is quite clear. His father and elder brother had both been tried, found guilty and executed by the Constable of England. Family power had been slowly eradicated through the grant of ancestral lands to other East Anglian landowners. The honour of being the Great Chamberlain of England, held by the de Vere family for generations had been taken away and handed to his brother-in-law the Earl of Warwick.

Yet Oxford had remained quiet about any grievance that he held against the crown. He had not become embroiled in the arguments at Court over preferred continental alliances, nor had he openly voiced an opinion on the promotion of the Queen’s family.

Revolt, Imprisonment, Release of The Earl of Oxford

However, he, along with other men, was named as a protagonist in a plot against the King. It resulted in his incarceration in the Tower. His release was most probably due to the influence of the Earl of Warwick.

Shortly after his release, when Warwick rebelled, he sided with the Lancastrians and became a thorn in the side of the Yorkists. Joining the rebellion and whilst in exile using a small fleet to harass shipping. He even went as far as to attempt a raid on Calais, before landing at Saint Michael’s Mount and taking the Castle.


John de Vere 13th Earl of Oxford

Order to transfer the Earl of Oxford from the Pale of Calais in 1483


Coat of Arms of John de Vere 13th Earl of Oxford. From Luminarium.


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