Richard III (b.1452 r.1483-1485)
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Richard III (b.1452 r.1483-1485)

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Now is the winter of our discontent
Made glorious summer by this sun of York.
Richard III, in Richard III, I:I (1597),W. Shakespeare.

Additional Information on
Richard III (b.1452 r.1483-1485)

Few Kings of England have ever attracted so much controversy and suspicion as Richard III. It is not really known whether he was a good or a bad King as such because his reign was so short and so overshadowed by the presumption that he had his two young nephews murdered in the Tower (Edward V and his brother). Since his death, historians, clerics and playwrights have striven to blacken his name and this has been escalated by Tudor propaganda - so it is questionable how 'evil' this king actually was. Although Richard managed to successfully quell a rebellion against him in 1483, in 1485 the forces of Henry Tudor defeated Richard at the Battle of Bosworth and killed him. Richard ended his reign under the shadow of shame and his dead body was carted away naked and dirty, slung over a horse's back.


He contents the people wherever he goes, best that ever did prince. For many a poor man that hath suffered wrong many days has been relieved and helped by him. O my troth, I liked never the condition of any prince so well as him. God hath sent him to us for the weal of us all.
- Thomas Langton, 'Bishop of St. David's', 1484.

Friend and foe was much what indifferent, where his advantage grew, he spared no man's death, whose life withstood his purpose.
- Sir Thomas More, 'The History of Richard III', 1513.

The truth I take to be this, Richard, who was slender and not tall, had one shoulder a little higher than the other: a defect, by the magnifying glasses of a party, by distance of time, and by the amplification of tradition, easily swelled to shocking deformity; for falsehood itself generally pays so much respect to truth as to make it the basis of its superstructure.
- Horace Walpole, 'Historic Doubts on the Life and Reign of King Richard the Third'.

In 1485 the only difference between Richard III and Henry VII was that Henry proved successful.
- C.H. Williams, Henry VII.

A horse! A horse! My kingdom for a horse.
- W. Shakespeare, said by Richard III at the Battle of Bosworth in Richard III, V:4 (1597). Advanced Category Search

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