By Susan Higginbotham. What would happen if this king suddenly went mad? What would his queen do? Would she make the same mistakes I did, or would she learn from mine? Margaret of Anjou, queen of England, cannot give up on her husband--even when he slips into insanity. And as mother to the House of Lancaster's last hope, she cannot give up on her son--even when England turns against them. This gripping tale of a queen forced to stand strong in the face of overwhelming odds is at its heart a tender tale of love.
Award-winning author Susan Higginbotham will once again ask readers to question everything they know about right and wrong, compassion and hope, duty to one's country and the desire of one's own heart. Higginbotham has given readers of historical fiction a gift to treasure. Bogdan, author of Secrets of the Tudor Court. Higginbotham accomplishes hercrusade against the exaggerated negative role of Margaret of Anjou byon the contrary ,picturing the Duke of York 8 as a cardboardvillain, who was after the throne from the beginning and evenwanted to kill King Henry VI and Queen Margaret for that.
I think, that is not historically right. See for that letter the following link, scroll to below in the link. But to get more information about the causes of theWars of Roses and the major players, I take youto a journey to the past. I warn youIt is a long piece of reading. But realize, that it is a journey of years ago and that takes time. Go with me on the journey. The price of the fighting? But however dynastic rivalry played a role, is too simplisticto point it out as a major cause of the War of Roses. The major causes are more complicated The great losses in the Hundred Years War and the subsequentsocial problems.
The diminishing of the royal mystic authority bythe usurping of thrones. The weak reign of Henry VI. By Usurpation. Can you still follow it?
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Yes, this explanation is necessary, otherwise the wholehistory is unclear. Because when it was only a matter of claiming the throne,at which Richard, Duke of York and his maternalfamily, the Mortimers, had a superior right, why notclaim that right earlier? First there was that usurpation thing of course andthe fact, that Edmund of Mortimer was only a minor.
One of the reasons laid in the reign of Henry VI , no warrior Kingat all, who had no interest in occupying France anymore andwanted peace.
The Queen of Last Hopes by Susan Higginbotham
This was shown by his marriage with Margaret of Anjou, on conditionto give up Maine and Anjou . With the subsequent losses of other territories inFrance, especially Normandy, led to rising unpopularityof the monarchy, since it was associated with the Dukesof Somerset and Suffolk, who were extremely unpopularbecause of their peace policy with France. English refugees [people who had lived in theEnglish territories of FRance] arrived, as English troops,who had often not been paid, spreading socialunrest in Southern England.
Again, Somerset and Suffolk. Other causes were the considerable debts England suffered becauseof the costly war with France and since Normandy was lost[after Maine and Anjou] people feared for a French invasion. Most rebels were peasants, craftsmen and shopkeepers. Initially succesful, Cade marched to London, but afterlooting and plundering in Londen, they were driven outby the citizens, who were initially sympathetic.
Also to take about his person the mighty prince, the Duke of Exeter, the Duke of Buckingham, the Duke of Norfolk, and his true earls and barons of his land, and he shall be the richest king Christian. King Henry VI  had suited well as a monk, doing gooddeeds and charity, but not as a ruler and a King. Not suited to a medieval King. He was in everything the opposite of hiswarrior father, King Henry V. Alas he had psychic problems, which resulted in variousnervous breakdowns, with as a consequence, that rivalnoblemen sought to control the crown.
That was not so strange, since an incapacitated Kingmeant anarchy and unrest, and a strong governmentwas needed.
The Queen of Last Hopes
A civil war. Result:Open war. Fighting went on and on, when than one side, than the otherwon. In , the victorious York did an attempt in Parliamentto be acclaimed as King 76 , which failed. The struggle went on. At , the Duke of York was killed in the battle ofWakefield 78 , with his second son, Edmund, Earl ofRutland 79 , as his brother in law, Lord Salisbury.
According to some sources, Rutland was executedafter the battle. But the tides were turning. According some sources, he was executed after the battle. The Tudor era began. A warlord, like his Beaufort enemies. Moreover, most historians assume, that York has beenkilled in the Battle of Wakefield.
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Often it happened, that when the King conquereda city, his Queen plead for mercy of the citizens, whichas a rule could be granted. Had she been the wife of warrior King Henry V, forexample, she probably would go in history unnoticed,a loyal wife, doing good works and trying to softenthe harder sides of the King sometimes.
But her circumstances were extraordinary, with an incpacitatedhusband, a growing unpopularity being a French Queen, allgningherself with unpopular nobles like Edmund of Beaufort, Dukeof Somerset and the Duke of Suffolk and childless until , standingagainst powerful men like the Duke of York, claiming the throne,with a superior claim indeed.
At the other side, her character limited her possibilities. The fact, that the Duke of York should be regent or Protectorof the Realm seemed natural considering his right tothe throne , but soon enough Margaret considered allhis action in a treacherous light, with escalating consequences. So the aversion of men for women taking power, combinedwith her uncompromising attitude, caused many of theproblems. Admitted, she was hard and uncomprfomising, ordering executionsand forfeited her adversies of all their lands which gave Yorkno alternative than eventually demanding the crown for himselfwith the Act of Accord , butshe did no worse than the men in that time.
I refer to the bloody executions on the order of Henry V, followingthe Battle of Agincourt , making him a war hero. Otherwise, you can condemn or criticize her hard and uncompromisingcharacter, alienating many and driving her enemies to the pointof no return But that is another stand than critic, because she is a woman.
Considering the Middle Ages and later, that is what can be expected,but in present days actions have to be valuated, not whethermale or female. Fact is, she spared his life.
So in her hardness, she had outburst of mercy too. In fact, she was no better or worse as the warrior men, Lancasteror York. But hardness and cruelty are no characteristics I can valuate,especially I admit that when there are women involved.