King Edward’s ‘escape’ from captivity, 1469

In July 1469, the Duke of Clarence, the King’s brother, the Earl of Warwick and George Neville, formerly Chancellor, issued a remonstrance against the King’s Council. From Calais, they called for the removal of the Kings’ evil councillors’ and a return to good governance.

The three men meant the Woodville family who had risen in prominence since Edward IVs marriage to Elizabeth Woodville and had also seen the king prefer a Burgundian alliance over their suggestion of friendship with France. Angered at their loss of influence, the 3 had decided that enough was enough. They sailed to England, raised an army, and with Edward in the North, set about attaining their goal.

At Edgcote they defeated an army loyal to the king. Soon after, Edward found himself King in name, but a puppet in practice as the Neville’s held him in Middleham Castle.

Edward IV was freed from virtual captivity

The Earl of Warwick attempted to rule in the king’s name. It was a plan that received little support from other nobles though. Revolt had been orchestrated by the Earl of Warwick, but other uprisings had followed and these proved hard to suppress without the full backing of parliament and nobility. Without sufficient support for his policies or enough men loyal to him personally, Edward IV was able to return to a position in which he was in control. That Edward was once again in command of things done in his name was clear on 10th September 1469.

Free again, Edward began to assert his authority, triggering the sequence of events that led to the readeption of Henry VI and later, Edward’s own successful reclaiming of the throne.


Battle of Edgcote – from one of my other websites.

Battle of Edgcote – from the experts on the battle, the Northamptonshire Battlefields Society

Edward IV, the captive king. By Susan Appleyard, author.

Highly recommended book on the Battle of Edgcote and the surrounding events

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