If the opposition were not supported and in a disadvantageous situation then the threat that they posed would be significantly smaller than if they were supported and had an advantage, be it literally or resourcefully, on the ruler. Similarly, another Of the reasons as to why one ruler could overcome such challenges and another couldn’t is the strength and position of the monarch themselves. This factor can also be significantly altered by the third reason the success differs which is the support given by foreign powers and who they decide to back in the power struggle for the throne.
The position of the opposition who were challenging the throne is particularly significant in their success, as the threat posed to the rule can only be as strong as the group that is posing that threat. In 1470 Edward Ivy’s rule was challenged by the former monarch that he had usurped, Henry VI, and one of the key reasons as to why he was able to overcome this challenge was due to his popularity as king.
Edward had proved to be an able king who was also young, strong and handsome, which is severely juxtaposed to the monarch he had usurped, as Henry VI was old, a less than capable ruler and thought to be insane. This meant that not only his original usurpation of Henry in 1461 was considered more acceptable to England’s population as it as most likely going to better the country; it also meant that Henrys usurpation of Edward in 1470 was especially unfavorable with the population.
Another reason why Edward was able to overcome his challenge of usurpation was at that time France was very unpopular with England, which is unsurprising as it is said that ‘England’s national hobby was going to war with France’, and Henry Vic’s wife, Margaret of Enjoy was the French kings niece. This marriage alone would be enough to make Edward appear more favorable with the general population; however it seemed likely that if
Edward had not usurped, an alliance between the two countries would proceed, which only served to support Edwards campaign to get back on the throne. Nonetheless, the most damaging factor to the position of the opposition is most likely the circumstances that the Lancaster house found themselves in as with the deaths Of both their key supporter, the Earl Of Warwick, at the Battle of Barnett and of the Lancaster heir, Edward, Prince of Wales at Teakettles’, the Lancaster position was no longer considered viable.
The popularity of Edward IV was not repeated with Richard Ill however, ND this combined with the fact he usurped a king that was showing great potential of forming into a capable and well-liked king, made his usurpation a lot more unacceptable than Edwards. The population’s dislike towards Richard remained throughout his small reign as he had not proved that they should feel otherwise due to his actions. , this meant that when it came to the Battle of Bowwow’s in 1485 he did not have the support from his subjects that he needed to overcome the challenges to his throne.
This was opposed to Henry Tudor who had, perhaps surprisingly, gathered a quite substantial mount of support as the Tudor cause had strengthened due to the Woodpile alliance (as Richard had alienated them in his reign) and the backing of some powerful Yorkers nobles. Henry also gained support from some of the gentry and local nobility that had previous loyalties to his uncle, Jasper Tudor. However the main supporter that played a significant part in his victory was the powerful Stanley family, to which his mother, Margaret Effort, was married to the head of.
It is unlikely that without these additional men that Henry would have been able to secure victory over Richard. One of the other reasons why Richard did not have sufficient backing to overcome the challenges to his rule posed by Henry Tudor, his opposition, was that his reign was weak in itself as his claim to the throne was based on alleged illegitimacy of Edward IV and his son, Edward V, who he had usurped. This is also highlighted by the fact that his brother, George, Duke of Clearance’s son had a better blood claim to the throne than Richard.
It is possible that, if Richard Ill had the popularity, and therefore support, that Edward IV had, he may have been able to overcome the opposition, however as he did not the session of the opposition was much stronger and thus Richard was not able to overcome the challenge that they posed to his rule. In the same way that the strength and validity Of the threat depended on the position and popularity, and therefore support, of the opposition; the position and security of the monarch largely affected likelihood that the threat succeeded.
In 1470 Edward IV was a popular king as he was as he was both intellectually and physically able, due to his strong, lean and handsome figure and his strategic use of propaganda of which he knew the value. His effective use of orphaned certainly helped him gain support over the duration of his first reign, although it would be unfair to give all the credit of his acceptance as King of England to his actions as he gained the throne in a much more favorable position than many others, as the population of England saw him as the more appealing alternative to his predecessor, King Henry VI who he usurped.
Although, one of the main reasons as to why he was so readily accepted as king by his subjects was when he went into battle at Mortise’s cross his army saw “three glorious suns, each a perfect sun” which was insider by many, at a very religious time to be a sign from God symbolizing his support for Edward. However, Edward was responsible for some of his support as a monarch which enabled him to overcome the challenges posed to his rule as he did succeed in bringing peace to a very turbulent country, to an extent, during his first reign.
This made him very popular with many in England as they desired peace and order after Henry VI tempestuous reign. This bringing of peace to the country was not the only reason why he gained support throughout his first reign however, as his reign policy was very popular, especially with the merchant classes who had a lot of influence in the country at that time, opposed to Henry Vic’s foreign policy which was likely to end up in an alliance with France which was not what the general population of England wanted at all.
This is all opposed to Richard Ill reputation and position when his rule was threatened was he was very unpopular with the general population of England partially due to the claims of infanticide against him, which was considered just as heinous a crime then as it is now, and arose when his two nephews were never seen gain after he imprisoned them in the tower after their father, Edward Ivy’s death. He was also suspected of murdering his wife, Anne Unveiled by poisoning her, although this was never proved.
However, he Was guilty Of the unjustified execution of William, Lord Hastings outside the tower of London, an action which proved to make him even more unpopular as king. However, it is doubtful that, even if Richard had not done any oftenest things that made him increasingly unpopular, he would’ve ever truly been accepted as king due to the circumstances he gained the throne under as he usurped a young king hat was ‘showing promise to be a very intellectual and able king’, not to mention that he was also his nephew.
His origins before he usurped the throne were likely to also be a reason as to why he did not gain much support as king due to his prominent association with the North and those in the South, where obviously due to the geographical location of London he would have needed the most support, did not like northerners. His unpopularity was also probably the reason why he did not gain much committed noble support which is what he needed to overcome the challenges to his throne in 1485, as hey would’ve brought men to help him fight at the Battle of Bowwow’s, and ultimately he may not have been defeated.