Elizabeth of York
Elizabeth of York

Not nice to die on your birthday, eh? Well, that’s what happened to Elizabeth of York, Queen Consort of England! Elizabeth of York, wife of Henry VII and mother of Henry VIII was born on this day in history, 11th February 1466, and died on this day in history, 11th February 1503, aged 37.

Here are some facts about Elizabeth of York:-

Birth: 11th February 1466 at Westminster Palace, London

Parents: Edward IV and Elizabeth Woodville

Death: 11th February 1503, Richmond Palace from a post-partum infection, on her 37th birthday

Buried: Henry VII’s Chapel, Westminster Abbey. Her funeral took place on the 23rd February and there was much mourning in England for this popular queen.

Marriage: Married Henry Tudor in January 1486, a marriage that ended the War of the Roses by uniting the Houses of York and Lancaster. The Tudor Rose emblem is a mixture of the red rose of Lancaster and the white rose of York. Elizabeth had a claim to the throne being the heir of Edward IV as her brothers (the Princes in the Tower) were missing.

David Starkey, in “Henry: Virtuous Prince” writes that the marriage did not take place until 6 months after the Battle of Bosworth “probably because Henry VII did not wish to seem to hold the throne in right of his wife…who, as eldest daughter of Edward IV, had a much better hereditary claim than his own.”

It is said that Henry VII and Elizabeth of York had a happy, loving marriage and that he was grief-stricken at her death in 1503.

Coronation: Elizabeth of York was crowned Queen Consort on 25th November 1487

Children: Arthur Prince of Wales, Margaret Tudor (Queen Consort of Scotland), Henry VIII, Elizabeth Tudor, Mary Tudor (Queen of France), Edmund Tudor (Duke of Somerset), Edward Tudor and Katherine Tudor. Only Arthur, Henry, Margaret and Mary survived childhood and Arthur died at the age of 15.

Elizabeth of York
Elizabeth of York

Appearance: Elizabeth of York was said to be a beauty, having inherited her looks from her handsome father and beautiful mother. She had fair hair and was an English Rose. Starkey describes her “as one of the beauties of the age: tall, stauesque, with blonde hair, blue eyes, fair skin and pure, regular features.”

Character: She was known to be kind, gentle and loyal. According to Starkey, Elizabeth “was a healer and reconciler”, a peacemaker.

Motto: Humble and Reverent Queen

Legacy: Her son Henry VIII ruled England from 1509-1547, her daughter Margaret married James IV of Scotland, and her daughter Mary married Louis XII of France and then Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk. Her grandchildren included James V of Scotland, Edward VI, Mary I and Elizabeth I, and her great-grandchildren included James VI/I and Frances Grey (mother of Lady Jane Grey. Her son Henry VIII named his daughter, the future Elizabeth I, after her. Some say that Henry idolised his mother so much that he couldn’t find a wife that lived up to his expectations – a mix of his mother and his grandmother, Margaret Beaufort.

Happy Birthday Natalie Dormer and Claire of Lancaster! And 10% off!

It’s also Natalie Dormer’s birthday today – Happy Birthday Natalie! And it’s my birthday too! I was born in Lancashire so I’m a Red Rose , Claire of Lancaster!

To celebrate my birthday, I’m giving you all 10% off orders from The Anne Boleyn Files and Elizabeth Files – simply enter BIRTHDAY10 in the coupon box at checkout. The code is valid from today (11th) until the end of Monday 15th.

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26 thoughts on “Happy Birthday and RIP Elizabeth of York”
  1. Happy birthday Elizabeth of York (RIP also!) and Natalie Dormer! And Claire of Lancaster, I hope you have a super fabulous day!!!!!!!

  2. Happy Birthday Claire, Natalie and yes indeed R.I.P Elizabeth of York..

    Claire shouldn’t you be a red rose for Lancaster and York the white rose?

    Anyway have a really lovely day..

    Best wishes from Carol

  3. Ah yes, got them the wrong way round, thanks Carol, just corrected – you’d think I’d get it right with the white rose being in the portraits and having a red rose tattoo myself!!

  4. Happy birthday Claire. I’ve reached an age where I’ve given up celebrating mine, it’s just too depressing. Anyway, have a nice and relaxing day; you deserve it!

  5. Elizabeth Plantagenate of York died after birth but unfortunately it took her baby too.The baby who died after birth was a girl.What a coincidence it was that she happened to have died on the same day she was born.Her son Henry oddly died on the same day that his father Henry was born.This story reminds me of Shakespeare because the same thing happened with him he died on the same day and month that he was born.
    You do not seem to hear of anything of the sort happening today it seems to have only been then for some reason.All these unusual,uncommon and rare coincidences.
    I think that Elizabeth of York looked mostly like her father and not much really like her mother as her son Henry seemed to have fully been like his mother in not just looks but traits too.It was Arthur the eldest son who took more after his father and the house of Lancaster.The two brothers were total opposites of eachother.It does make wonder if Arthur had lived what kind of Tudor and King he would have made if he had lived long enough to suceed to the throne of England.
    Elizabeth did have a stonger claim to the throne than Henry himself as Henry was only a noble frm a welsh noble familly.It was Elizabeth who was the royal a Plantagenate princess of York and the daughter of a King.

  6. Many happy wishes on your birthday Claire! A red rose tattoo sounds pretty. I have a black bunny in honor of my first pet. She would look cute near some roses LOL! My mom had a fit when I got her on my upper back. Very cool to shard your day with two such lovely ladies.

  7. Just a quickie to wish Elizabth of York (RIP), Natalie Dormer and especially you Claire for a really great Birthdy yesterday – Hope it was a good one

  8. Claire it was my brother’s birthday yesterday too! He is from Yorkshire, so the 11th Feb must be a day for the red and white roses!

  9. Happy birthday for back then, but I just wanted to mention a little typo Claire – you put that she was born on her 37th birthday. (hu!)
    I can see how this happened, but o-well! I was just thinking what the baby would have been like if it had survived… Another branch in the Tudor line, interesting…
    I’ll just add a quick happy bithday and RIP to the last Plantagenate Queen, Elizabeth!

  10. Claire,

    Wishing you all the best on your birthday! Hope you have a wonderful one! (Thanks again for the great Tudor web sites!)


  11. Claire, Thanks for this web site, I have been a Tudor Fan forever, and I love being on this site. I instructed my husband on where to fine my christmas gift , it was a Anne Boleyn erring replica. I love it.
    Honestly Anne is my Favourite of Henrys wife. I admire is lat wife Katherine Parr. I think in alot of ways they were more alike that the others. Even though Catherine his first wife was also educated, she seemed to be be beloved by the people. She seem to also,have that one track mind, that caused a number of people to parish along with her. Sadly it availed nothing.
    Jane is my least favourite, in that she refuse to see The King for what he was. She did accomplished what the others couldn’t.She gave Henry son, and dying soon after, thus insuring Henrys love for ever.
    I do credit Anne of Cleves as the most sensible. Based on todays standard of women who divorce the very rich husbands. She came out of it with her life, and a large alimony package. Good for her. You Go Girl

  12. Happy Birthday Claire!! Wishing you a peaceful and happy day, and thank you so much for sharing your indepth knowledge of the Royal Families!!

  13. It is so sad that she died so young but It was like that in those days they didnt have anti biotics and people died if she hsd lived maybe she would have been a positive influence on Henry

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