New Richard III and Wars of the Roses online course

richard_iii_courseHistorian Toni Mount has just launched her latest online history course in association with and this latest one is a ten-part course on Richard III and the Wars of the Roses.

I’ve had a sneak peek at it because I did the narration of the audio lessons and it’s a great course, very thorough.

Here’s the blurb:

Richard Plantagenet (Richard III) ruled as King of England for little more than two years, yet his life spanned three decades of civil war, the period of turmoil and treason we call the Wars of the Roses.

In this fascinating new ten-part course we will explore the intriguing personalities involved and unravel the ever-changing fortunes of the royal Houses of Lancaster and York. The late fifteenth century was a time when today’s friend could be tomorrow’s enemy, when lives were constantly at risk from warfare, from betrayal and the dastardly deeds of others.

In this course we will follow the events which, from half a century before his birth at Fotheringhay in October 1452, nevertheless affected every moment of Richard’s life until his tragic death in battle at Bosworth in August 1485 and beyond. His successor, Henry Tudor, blackened Richard’s reputation but was likewise plagued by pretenders to his crown.

Released to coincide with the first anniversary of Richard’s reburial in Leicester, the course comes complete with a session on the discovery of the king’s remains in a council car park, his new resting place and an explanation of the latest research carried out on his bones, revealing far more intimate facts about his life than we can glean from historical documents.

Meet Warwick, the powerful Kingmaker, the turbulent Duke of Clarence – he of the ‘butt of malmsey wine’ fame – the mysterious ‘Pretender’, Perkin Warbeck, and many other colourful characters while discovering English history at its most intriguing.

Carefully and lovingly narrated by Claire Ridgway, you’ll discover just what led to this famous civil war, who was involved and how Richard III came to power and was ultimately killed at Bosworth.

Note: This is an online course of downloadable or streaming audio lectures which can be done in your own time and you have lifetime access to the course once you have signed up and paid. There is no set start or end date, you can do it at your own pace.

You can sign up, see the full description, find out what’s included and see the answers to questions you might have over at There are also gift certificates available. It costs $49.95 (approx £36 at time of writing) and is open to everyone internationally.

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3 thoughts on “New Richard III and Wars of the Roses online course”
  1. Yahoooooooo!!!!! Yes, the record putting right what once went wrong through Tudor propaganda. I will be partaking. Thanks for the link and information.

  2. Was he behind the murder of his brother, the King. I think he was as who else gained anything from it but him. He had no claim to the crown the next King should have been the elder of the two sons that he had put in the Tower for there for so called to keep them sake. Again he was the only one to have gained by the death of the boys.
    Do you think the sister of the boys would have married Henry the VII if she had any doubts about him having the boys killed.

  3. Edward IV was not murdered, there is no evidence to support this. Richard Duke of Gloucester was in York and had been for several months when his brother, Edward took ill after catching cold while boating on the Thames. His chill turned to pneumonia, mixed with over indulgence, contributed to his death, probably from food poisoning, he was eating shell fish and other seafood, all known for severe forms of food poisoning. Edward had been suffering from stomach disorders for a couple of years, he was overweight, he drank a great deal, all of these things combined with pneumonia caused his death. Richard would not have benefited most from his death, his wife and sons would. There is no evidence that Edward IV was killed, he was ill.

    The claim that Edward V and Richard of York plus the daughters were illegitimate is the key to Richard lll claim to the throne. After the Princes, Richard was the adult male heir, his claim was legitimate. He was presented with believable evidence and testament from a church man that Edward IV had married Eleanor Butler before Elizabeth Woodville. He had the case investigated, he was convinced that the claim was true, he was convinced by the evidence, the evidence was investigated and found to be true. The marriage to Elizabeth Woodville was illegal as far as Richard was concerned, the boys had no legitimate claim to the throne. The facts were made public in the sermon at Saint Paul’s Cross, the Council met, he was invited to take the crown by the three estates of the realm, the council, lords and church, confirmed by the members of Parliament present, over 200 people in all. As the lawful heir Richard accepted the crown. Richard iii acted in good faith, his nephews were declared illegitimate, he had no reason to kill them.

    There is no evidence that Richard killed his nephews, or that anyone else did, merely that they vanished. Edward v was housed on the decision of the council in the royal palace of the Tower, he was joined by his brother who showed no fear about going to be with Edward. Elizabeth Woodville went into the sanctuary at Westminster, were she and her daughters lived in luxury, comfort, were she was encouraged to come out by Richard but remained and plotted with Margaret Beaufort and could have been seriously accused of treason for attempting to support Buckingham and Henry Tudor.

    Sources are divided into various camps, those who reported rumours that the boys were dead, thoze who reported that Buckingham killed them, those who stated that the boys had disappeared and those who confirmed that all the information came from rumours. The information is not conclusive evidence that Richard iii killed them, we don’t know what happened to the Princes, then or now. Other scholars believe that the boys were moved and kept in protective custody. They were seen alive for most of the Summer of 1483, the last person we know of stating that Edward feared death, meaning he was ill as this was his doctor, who attended every day and was a Tudor turncoat.

    Your last question concerns Elizabeth of York and her motivation for marrying Henry Tudor. Elizabeth Woodville and her daughters had heard rumours that the boys were dead, but never received confirmation of their deaths. It is probable that they believed that the boys were dead and mourned them. Elizabeth Woodville was also guilty of treason so could have poisoned her daughters minds against Richard. However, she also came to an agreement with Richard to guarantee their safety. The elder daughters needed husbands, they could not stay in sanctuary forever. Elizabeth and Cecily came to count and Elizabeth was taken with Richard, romantically. If Elizabeth of York was prepared to flirt with and have affection for Richard, the person she must have been told had ordered the death of her brothers, of course she would marry her so called rescuer. There is no evidence that Elizabeth became Richard’s lover, but enough attention was drawn to her relationship with him to cause concern that he would marry her. Richard made a public declaration that he was not intended in Elizabeth as a wife. I believe that Elizabeth of York accepted the death of her brothers, but this is not evidence that she was correct. She did not know what happened to them. As for marrying Henry Tudor, yes, even had she believed otherwise, she had no proof of their deaths or being alive, but she was promised to Henry Tudor, he was now King by the lucky victory at Bosworth, so she had no choice. Even if Elizabeth believed that Edward and Richard were alive, there was no proof, she could not produce them, she had to accept that they were probably killed, or assume that they were; she did her duty. Even though Elizabeth had little choice but to marry Henry Tudor, she got to know him during the delay in their marriage and was content to marry him. Henry and Elizabeth got on well, they were fond of each other, had an affectionate and successful marriage. The rumours that Elizabeth had a relationship with Richard iii were nothing to do with the delay in their marriage, Henry had to have his first Parliament reverse the Titulas Regis and waiting for the dispensation from the Pope took time. Elizabeth of York had no more idea about the true fate of the Princes than historians do today or commentators had then.

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