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Henry Stafford, 2nd Duke of Buckingham[1, 2]

Male 1455 - 1483  (28 years)

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  • Name Henry Stafford 
    Suffix 2nd Duke of Buckingham 
    Born 4 Sep 1455  Abergavenny, Monmouthshire, Wales Find all individuals with events at this location  [2
    Gender Male 
    Acceded 10 Jul 1460 
    Died 2 Nov 1483  Salisbury, Wiltshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location  [2
    Cause: executed 
    Buried Grey Friars, Salisbury, Wiltshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location  [2
    • Constable of England.°%20D.%20Buckingham)

      «u»Knight of the Garter <>«/u». Constable of England. He played a major role in «b»Richard III«/b»'s rise and fall. He is also one of the primary suspects in the disappearance (and presumed murder) of the Princes in the Tower.
      His father, «b»Humphrey, Earl Stafford«/b», a Lancastrian, was killed at the first Battle of St Albans in 1455 when «b»Henry«/b» was an infant, and his grandfather, the «b»First Duke of Buckingham«/b», another leading Lancastrian, was killed five years later, in 1460. The new Duke eventually became a ward of «b»Queen Elizabeth Woodville«/b», consort of «b»Edward IV«/b». He was recognized as Duke of Buckingham in 1465 and married the next year to the «b»Queen«/b»'s sister «b»Catherine Woodville«/b» - she was 24, and he was 12. He never forgave «b»Elizabeth«/b» for forcing him into that marriage, and he resented his wife and the other Woodvilles, as well. When «b»Edward IV«/b» died in 1483, and the showdown came between the Woodvilles and «b»Edward«/b»'s brother «b»Richard, Duke of Gloucester«/b», over who was going to be in charge of «b»Edward V«/b» until he came of age, «b»Buckingham«/b» was on «b»Richard«/b»'s side at first.
      Then Parliament declared «b»Edward V«/b» illegitimate and offered «b»Richard«/b» the throne, and he accepted it and became «b»Richard III«/b». After dithering between them for a short while, «b»Buckingham«/b» started working with «u»«b»John Morton, Bishop of Ely <>«/u»«/b», in the interests of «b»Buckingham«/b»'s second-cousin «u»«b»Henry Tudor <>«/u»«/b» and against those of «b»King Richard«/b», even though it meant being on the same side with his in-laws, the Woodvilles.
      When «u»«b»Henry Tudor <>«/u»«/b» tried to invade England to take the throne from «b»Richard«/b» in Oct 1483, «b»Buckingham«/b» raised an army in Wales and started marching east to support «u»«b»Henry <>«/u»«/b». By a combination of luck and skill, «b»Richard«/b» put down the rebellion: «u»«b»Henry <>«/u»«/b»'s ships ran into a storm and had to go back to Brittany, and «b»Buckingham«/b»'s army was greatly troubled by the same storm and deserted when «b»Richard«/b»'s forces came against them. «b»Buckingham«/b» tried to escape in disguise but was turned in for the bounty «b»Richard«/b» had put on his head, and he was convicted of treason and beheaded in Salisbury on 2 Nov. Following «b»Buckingham«/b»'s execution, his widow, «b»Catherine«/b», married «u»«b»Jasper Tudor, 1st Duke of Bedford <>«/u»«/b».
      «b»Buckingham«/b»'s motives in these events are disputed. His antipathy to «b»Edward IV«/b» and his children probably arose from two causes. One was his dislike for their mutual Woodville in-laws, whom «b»Edward«/b» greatly favored. Another was his interest in the Bohun estate. «b»Buckingham«/b» had inherited a great deal of property from his great-great-grandmother, «b»Eleanor De Bohun«/b», wife of «b»Thomas of Woodstock«/b» and daughter of the «b»Earl of Hereford«/b», «b»Essex and Northampton«/b». «b»Eleanor«/b»'s sister and co-heir «b»Mary De Bohun«/b» married «b»Henry IV«/b», and so the other half of the estate was eventually inherited by «b»Henry VI«/b». When «b»Henry VI«/b» was deposed by «b»Edward IV«/b», «b»Edward«/b» incorporated that half into the Crown property. «b»Buckingham«/b» claimed those lands should have devolved to him instead. It is likely that «b»Richard III«/b» promised to settle the estate on «b»Buckingham«/b» in return for his help seizing the throne.
      After «b»Richard«/b»'s coronation he did award the other half of the Bohun estate to «b»Buckingham«/b», but it was conditional on the approval of Parliament. Historians disagree on whether this condition was in fact a way for «b»Richard«/b» to appear to keep his promise while actually breaking it. So it might have been a motivation for «b»Buckingham«/b» to turn against «b»Richard«/b».
      It's also possible that, if «b»Richard«/b» was responsible for killing the Princes in the Tower, the murders caused «b»Buckingham«/b» to change sides. On the other hand, «b»Buckingham«/b» himself had motivation to kill the Princes. He was next in the Lancastrian line after his cousins «u»«b»Henry Tudor <>«/u»«/b» and «u»«b»Henry <>«/u»«/b»'s mother (some say his claim was better than Tudor's, as his descent was considered legitimate). If he killed the Princes and threw the blame on «b»Richard«/b», he could foment a Lancastrian rebellion. Then after eliminating «u»«b»Henry <>«/u»«/b» he could take the throne. Some historians take this line of reasoning. In fact, a few go even further and claim «b»Buckingham«/b»'s plotting started much earlier in «b»Edward IV«/b»'s reign. If they are right then «b»Buckingham«/b» had a very elaborate and lengthy plan, but one which very nearly succeeded. -It is worth noting in this connection that according to a manuscript discovered in the early 1980s in the Ashmolean collection, the Princes were murdered "«i»be «/i»[by] «i»the vise«/i»" of the «b»Duke of Buckingham«/b». There is some argument over whether "vise" means "advice" or "devise," and, if the former, in what sense; for a discussion of the matter, see the article by Richard Firth Green, who discovered the manuscript, in the English Historical Review of 1984.
    Person ID I14310  Glenn Cook Family
    Last Modified 15 Mar 2007 

    Father Humphrey Stafford, 7th Earl Stafford,   b. 1424, Stafford, Staffordshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Aft 17 Dec 1457, Saint Albans, Hertfordshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 33 years) 
    Mother Margaret Beaufort,   b. Abt 1437, London, Middlesex, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 1474  (Age ~ 37 years) 
    Married 1455 
    Family ID F6806  Group Sheet

    Family Catherine Woodville, Duchess Buckingham/Duchess Bedford,   b. Bef 1458,   d. Between 1497 and 22 Jul 1525  (Age ~ 39 years) 
    Married Feb 1466 
     1. Edward Stafford, 3rd Duke of Buckingham,   b. 3 Feb 1478, Brecknock Castle, Wales, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 17 May 1521, Tower Hill, London, Middlesex, England Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 43 years)
     2. Anne Stafford, Countess Huntingdon,   b. Abt 1483, Ashby, Leicestershire, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   bur. Stoke Pogis, Buckinghamshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location
     3. Henry of Wiltshire Stafford, 3rd Earl Wiltshire,   b. 1479, Brecknock Castle, Brecknockshire, Wales Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 6 Mar 1522  (Age 43 years)
     4. Elizabeth Stafford, Countess Sussex,   d. Bef 11 May 1532
    Last Modified 15 Mar 2007 
    Family ID F8434  Group Sheet

  • Sources 
    1. [S36] Directory of Royal Genealogical Data, Brian Tompsett, Dept of Computer Science, University of Hull, England([email protected]), (This work is Copyright b 1994-2002 Brian C Tompsett).

    2. [S27]