The Role Of Richard III And The Disappearance Of The Princes In The Tower

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Historians have disagreed about the role of Richard III in the disappearance of the Princes in the tower. Why has history judged Richard to be guilty of their murder?


In 1483, the Yorkist king, Edward IV, died suddenly, leaving his young son Edward V to inherit the throne. The late king’s brother, Richard, Duke of Gloucester, was made Lord Protector of England until Edward’s coronation and majority, and as was the standard procedure at the time, the new king and his brother Richard, Duke of York were taken into the Tower of London to await the coronation. During this time, however, the marriage of Edward IV and Elizabeth Woodville was declared illegitimate, along with their children. This meant Edward could no longer inherit the throne, and Richard and Anne Neville were instead crowned. After the Princes were declared illegitimate, it is claimed they were never seen again. Since then, historians have disagreed about the role of Richard III in their disappearance, with the majority claiming only Richard could have done it. Other historians have produced differing theories, with the most improbable being that Henry VII found the Princes alive after his victory at Bosworth, and others claiming the Princes had never been killed at all. Despite these other theories, history has judged Richard to be guilty of the young Princes’ murder, mostly due to purely circumstantial evidence, as only a few records of the events survive, and those that do are mainly biased being
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