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thou hast joined with them in the villany." He then arrested Hastings, and desired him to make short shrift, for he would not dine till his head was struck off. Hastings was hurried out to the little green in front of the Tower Chapel, and beheaded on a log of wood. On the same day

Lord Rivers and his friends were beheaded at Pontefract.

Richard then demanded that the Duke of York should be given up by his mother. The unhappy queen gave him a last embrace, and burst into tears as he left her. He was taken to Edward in the Tower, who showed great delight in having his brother restored to him.

Having thus the princes in his power, Gloucester took means to persuade the people that they were not legitimate, on the plea that Edward IV. was already married to Eleanor Talbot, widow of Lord Butler, before he espoused their mother, Elizabeth Woodville. As for the son of

George, duke of Clarence, it was maintained that his father's attainder disabled him from ascending the throne. In all his plans, Gloucester was assisted by Henry, duke of Buckingham, and a scene was got up, in which he was requested by the lord mayor to take possession of the throne. After a well-feigned reluctance, he assented to the proposal, and was crowned, together with his wife, just three months after his brother's death. That lady was Anne of Neville, the widow of Edward of Lancaster, in whose slaughter Richard had assisted. They had one son, who was now created Prince of Wales.

CHAPTER XXIII.

RICHARD III. (CROOK-BACK.)

Born at Fotheringay. Buried at Leicester. Reigned 2 years. From A.D. 1483 to A.D. 1485.

Archbishop of Canterbury.

Thomas Bourchier, A.D. 1454-1486.

RICHARD SOON filled up the measure of his guilt by the murder of his nephews. They were smothered in their sleep, by Sir James Tyrrel and three other ruffians. The king had scarcely gained the crown by these unequalled [H. s. 1.]

E

crimes, when a plot was formed to deprive him of it; at the head of which was the very Duke of Buckingham who had helped him to seize it, and who seems to have been dissatisfied with the reward of his treason. He was himself a descendant of Thomas of Woodstock, one of the younger sons of Edward III., and might have shown some title to the crown on his own account. The plan, however, by which he hoped to avenge himself on Richard was, t unite the houses of Lancaster and York by the marriage o Henry Tudor, earl of Richmond, with Elizabeth, the daugh ter of Edward IV. Henry, who was residing at the cour of Bretagne, was descended from John of Gaunt, by hi mother, the Lady Margaret Beaufort; at this time the wi of Lord Stanley, her third husband. He was the la surviving prince of the line of Lancaster; and though th title of the Beaufort family was very questionable, Henr was looked upon as the representative of the Lancastria claim.

The first result of this plot was disastrous. Henry saile from St. Malo, and was driven back by tempests. A gre flood in the Severn, which lasted for ten days, dispersed t forces of his supporter, Buckingham, who was soon aft betrayed by an old servant with whom he had taken refug and seized and beheaded at Salisbury.

The next attempt of Henry was more successful : landed at Milford Haven, and having marched into the hea of the kingdom, was met by Richard near Bosworth, Leicestershire. A battle took place, in which Lord Stanle went over to his son-in-law; and Richard seeing that was lost rushed into the thickest of the fight, and was slain His crown was carried to the Earl of Richmond, who wa saluted in the field by the title of Henry VII.'

Richard possessed his ill-gotten crown little more tha two years, during which he lost his son, and is thought t have hastened the death of his wife, with a view to unit himself to his niece, Elizabeth of York. From some defec in one of his shoulders, he was commonly called Crook

8 The Act of A.D. 1389, for the legitimation of John of Gaunt's chil dren by Katharine Swynford, contained a proviso that no right to the crown should be obtained under it.

9 The body of Richard, having been stripped, was thrown across a horse, and buried at Leicester.

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back. His mind is said to have been harassed with images of terror, from consciousness of the many crimes which he had crowded into a life of thirty-two years.

The royal line of Plantagenet ended with this king. Among the princes of this house are some of the ablest, as well as some of the weakest, of the English sovereigns. They were mostly engaged in struggles with their barons, - and wars in France, which were in many respects favourable to the liberties of England, from the necessity of appealing to the Commons for assistance. The art of printing was becoming more and more known and valued, and the dawn of less barbarous times is henceforth discernible. Some of the opinions for which Lord Cobham died were maintained in the reign of Henry VI. by Reginald Pecock, successively Bishop of St. Asaph and Chichester; whose writings were especially directed against the notion that the Romish Church is infallible. Very different accounts have been given of his tenets on other subjects, but there seems little doubt that he held several errors, though he appeared to be earnest on the side of truth.

Born at Pembroke.

24 years.

CHAPTER XXIV.

HENRY VII.

Buried in Westminster Abbey. Reigned
From A.D. 1485 to A.D. 1509.

Archbishops of Canterbury.

Thomas Bourchier, A.D. 1454

1486.

John Morton, A.D. 1486—1500.

Henry Dene, A.D. 1500-1504. William Wareham, A.D. 15041533.

HENRY would probably have met with more opposition, had it not been understood that he was to marry Elizabeth of York. He was himself unwilling to owe his crown to her title, and the marriage did not take place till after his own coronation. The submission which he received from the friends of the house of York was never very hearty. His manners were cold and repulsive; and they disliked him for his distant behaviour to his queen, as well as f tinuing the imprisonment of the young Earl of

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