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Sunday, 3 March 2013

Battle Of Bosworth Field

When Henry Tudor, Earl of Richmond, the head of the rival House of Lancaster, landed at Milford Haven, Wales. Richard III hastened to meet him at Bosworth Field, near the village of Market Bosworth, 12 miles west of Leicester.

According to local tradition in Leicester Richard went to see a seer in the town before heading off for the Battle of Bosworth Field on August 22, 1485. She told him "where your spur should strike on the ride into battle, your head shall be broken on the return".

Richard is reputed to have celebrated Mass at St James’ Church before the Battle of Bosworth.

Richard had 11,000–12,000 men and a strong position on Ambion Hill. Henry had 5,000–7,000 troops, but Lord Stanley commanded 5,000 men to the north of the royalists and when Stanley switched sides, it severely depleted his army's strength.

King Richard III at Bosworth Field. Wikipedia Commons

As many of Richard's men deserted him, his friends urged him to flee but the determined Richard fought on furiously. The King was forced into a swamp unhorsed and was hacked at by Welsh pikemen. As he fell mortally wounded, his crown was picked up and placed on Henry's head.

Richard was to be the last English King to die on the battlefield. The late King’s body was slung on a horse and taken to Leicester.

On the ride into battle Richard’s spur struck the bridge stone of the Bow Bridge; as he was being carried back over the back of a horse his head struck the same stone and was broken open.

It is said that Richard's body was dragged naked through the streets before being buried at Greyfriars Church, Leicester.

The name of Richard’s horse at Bosworth was “White Surrey”.

Tudor succeeded Richard to become Henry VII, and cemented the succession by marrying the Yorkist heir, Elizabeth of York.

Richard’s death at Bosworth marked the end of the Middle Ages.

The true location of the Battle of Bosworth was only ascertained in 2009, around a mile from the place previously thought.

There is a fish and chip shop in Bosworth Market called “The Batter of Bosworth”.

Source Daily Express

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