Ancestor Index Ancestor Index

Lineal ancestor, King Edward IV of England (the son of Richard, Duke of York and Cecily Neville) married (1464) Elizabeth Woodville. Their daughter, the Princess Elizabeth of York, married (1486) King Henry VII (Henry Tudor).

Back Part 1 of "The Hastings Legacy"   Part 2 Part 2 - To Part 3 Part 3

Henry Tudor
from Polydore Vergil, The Anglia Historia, 1485-1537, spelling updated.

Margaret Tudor - Henry VIII's sister who married James IV of ScotlandHis body was slender but well built and strong; his height above the average. His appearance was remarkably attractive and his face was cheerful, especially when speaking; his eyes were small and blue, his teeth few, poor and blackish; his hair was thin and white; his complexion sallow. His spirit was distinguished, wise and prudent; his mind was brave and resolute and never, even at moments of the greatest danger, deserted him. He had a most pertinacious memory. Withal he was not devoid of scholarship. In government he was shrewd and prudent, so that no one dared to get the better of him through deceit or guile. He was gracious and kind and was as attentive to his visitors as he was easy of access. His hospitality was splendidly generous; he was fond of having foreigners at his court and he freely conferred favours of them. But those of his subjects who were indebted to him and who did not pay him due honour or who were generous only with promises, he treated with harsh severity. He well knew how to maintain his royal majesty and all which appertains to kingship at every time and in every place. He was most fortunate in war, although he was constitutionally more inclined to peace than to war. He cherished justice above all things; as a result he vigorously punished violence, manslaughter and every other kind of wickedness whatsoever. Consequently he was greatly regretted on that account by all his subjects, who had been able to conduct their lives peaceably, far removed from the assaults and evil doing of scoundrels. He was the most ardent supporter of our faith, and daily participated with great piety in religious services.To those whom he considered to be worthy priests, he often secretly gave alms so that they should pray for his salvation. He was particularly fond of those Franciscan friars whom they call Observants, for whom he founded many convents, so that with his help their rule should continually flourish in his kingdom, but all these virtues were obscured latterly only by avarice, from which...he suffered. This avarice is surely a bad enough vice in a private individual, whom it forever torments; in a monarch indeed it may be considered the worst vice, since it is harmful to everyone, and distorts those qualities of trustfulness, justice and integrity by which the state must be governed.

The portrait above right is believed by family anecdote to be that of a young (King) Henry VIII - oils on wood panel.

The union of the two families was reaffirmed when Henry, son of Henry VII and Elizabeth Plantagenet (of the House of York) became King. Henry VIII's coronation stabilised the throne of England.

He was, despite all things, a strong king and he ruled for many years. In contrast, the short reign of his son, Edward VI (mother - Jane Seymour), might well have set England on course towards a totally different destiny had he not died (of consumption or modern day tuberculosis) so young.

On his death, the sad episode of Lady Jane Grey, "the Nine Days Queen" (elder sister to the maternal line of this site) and the short and bloody rule of Mary (mother, Catharine of Aragon) meant that England was again in turmoil when Henry's politically adept daughter, Elizabeth (mother, Anne Boleyn) - Gloriana, the Virgin Queen - gained the throne and became - arguably - the greatest of English monarchs.

Elizabeth, the young princess ...Elizabeth had the fortune to preside over a golden age of exploration, discovery and expansion. It was also (titled in hindsight) the Renaissance era with implications for all facets of 'the arts' and the flourishing of such figures as Frobisher, Hawkins, Sir Francis Drake and, of course, William Shakespeare - all of whom - and many more - left a legacy which has moulded the British psyche down through the centuries.

Elizabeth died without an heir and the end of her reign also saw the end of the Tudor dynasty. Subsequently the crowns of England and Scotland were conjoined in the person of King James I of England and VI of Scotland - of the House of Stuart, descended from the Princess Margaret Tudor - daughter of Henry VII. She had married King James IV of Scotland and was mother of James V, and grandmother of Mary, Queen of Scots. She later married Gavin Douglas, Earl of Angus.

Princess Mary Tudor - sister of Henry VIII - is an ancestral link in the maternal line of this Family Vault, outlined in "The Hastings Legacy". She married Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk after the death of her first husband - the aged king, Louis XII of France.

Of Tudors, Wars and Roses
(Adapted from 'Encarta' and other sources.)

The Roses

York and Lancaster - a damask rose.

The flowers of rosa damascena versicolor span the color possibilities: pink, white, white flecks on pink, pink flecks on white. It is fabled that Lancaster took the red rose from it, and York took the white.

The Tudor Rose - was a symbol of the union between the red rose of the House of Lancaster and the white rose of the House of York. The Tudor Rose did not exist as a flower as such but became the heraldic device and political emblem used after the 'Wars of the Roses'.

The Red Rose of Lancaster - also known as the Apothecary Rose, rosa gallica officinalis which originally came from "the Land of the Saracens" to Provins in France when Thibault Le Chansonnier returned from the Crusades.

The White Rose of York - named alba semi-plena, it displays large and very fragrant white flowers. For many decades, Bulgarians producing attar of roses have grown it for its rose oil.

The Wars - The Wars of the Roses was a series of dynastic civil wars in England fought by the rival houses of Lancaster and York between 1455 and 1485. The struggle was so named because the badge of the house of Lancaster was a red rose and that of the house of York a white rose. The initial opponents were the Lancastrian King of England, Henry VI, aided by his Queen, Margaret of Anjou, and Richard Plantagenet, 3rd Duke of York. Because of the insanity of the king and military losses in France during the last phase of the Hundred Years' War, the authority of the house of Lancaster was badly shaken.

York asserted his claim to the throne in 1460, after defeating the Lancastrian armies at St. Albans in 1455 and at Northampton in 1460. In the latter year York was defeated and killed at Wakefield. In 1461, however, his son was proclaimed king as Edward IV and shortly thereafter he decisively defeated Henry and Margaret, who then fled from England. In 1465 Henry was captured and imprisoned in the Tower of London.

The Countess of Richmond & Derby, commonly called Lady Margaret Beaufort, The Beaufort Line (Beware POPUPS) was the daughter of John Beaufort, Duke of Somerset (son of John of Gaunt by Catherine Roet - Swynford), and his wife, Margaret Beauchamp. At the age of about seven, she became the child bride of John De La Pole, 2nd Duke of Suffolk, but the union was later dissolved. The Beaufort stock, though originally bastard, was legitimised by an Act of Parliament in Richard II’s reign. Thus, on the failure of the heirs of King Henry VI, Margaret's claim to the crown of England became quite a possible one (1471). Such as it was, however, the Lancastrian title had originally rested, if on anything beyond usurpation or parliamentary election, on the exclusion of females.William Smythe - Bishop of Lincoln. Argent a chevron sable between three roses gules seeded or barbed vert - the Coat of Arms. He looked after Prince Arthur, Henry' VIII's short-lived elder brother and was significantly connected  with the House of Tudor.

The war was revived because of division within the Yorkist faction. Richard Nevill(e), Earl of Warwick, aided by George Plantagenet, Duke of Clarence, younger brother of Edward, made an alliance with Margaret and led an invasion from France in 1470. Edward was driven into exile and Henry restored to the throne.

In 1471, however, Edward returned and, aided by Clarence, defeated and killed Warwick at the Battle of Barnet. Shortly thereafter, the Lancastrians were totally defeated at the Battle of Tewkesbury and Henry was murdered in the Tower. After the death of Edward in 1483, his brother Richard usurped the throne, becoming king as Richard III, and the Lancastrians turned for leadership to Henry Tudor, Earl of Richmond, who later became King Henry VII, founder of the Tudor dynasty.The Smyth(e) families of Ireland - with significant Tudor (and later) connection here -

In 1485 the forces of Richard and Henry fought the decisive Battle of Bosworth Field, the last major encounter of the war. After Richard's death in battle, Henry (representing Lancaster) and Elizabeth Plantagenet were married. This marriage united the two families, and Henry VII became the first Tudor King of England. The chief result of the conflict was an increase in the power of the Crown. Battle and execution all but destroyed the old nobility, and the financial resources of the monarchy were strengthened by the confiscation of estates.


To wander through the histories of a host of Tudor families - including those associated with this Family Vault - click here (opens a new window - long download - worth the wait.)

Back Part 1 of "The Hastings Legacy"   Part 2 Part 2 - To Part 3 Part 3

Smythes of Acton Burnell - family of Maria "Fitzherbert" SmytheShropshire Smyth/e Sir William Smythe and Isabella Nevill/e of Elford, StaffordshireStaffordshire Smyth/e

Family Archives Index Page