Henry VII

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Henry VII,

c.1275–1313, Holy Roman emperor (1312–13) and German king (1308–13). A minor count of the house of Luxembourg, Henry was elected German king on the death of King Albert IAlbert I,
c.1250–1308, Holy Roman Emperor (1298–1308), son of Rudolf I. Albert was invested with Austria and Styria in 1282 by his father, who also hoped to secure the succession as king of the Germans for Albert.
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 after the electors had set aside the two main contenders, Albert's eldest son, Frederick of Austria, and the French prince Charles of ValoisCharles of Valois
, 1270–1325, French prince and military leader, third son of Philip III and father of Philip VI. He dominated the reign in France of his nephew Louis X.
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. By accepting Elizabeth of Bohemia's offer (1310) to marry his son, John of Luxembourg, he gained Bohemia for his house and made it the main rival to the house of Hapsburg. He secured the German princes' approval for the acquisition by lavishly distributing the imperial domain. Henry's chief concern, however, was to renew the Hohenstaufen policy of making Italy the main source of imperial power. Pope Clement V and, among others, Dante welcomed his rule as a means of ending the by now almost meaningless strife of the Guelphs and GhibellinesGuelphs and Ghibellines
, opposing political factions in Germany and in Italy during the later Middle Ages. The names were used to designate the papal (Guelph) party and the imperial (Ghibelline) party during the long struggle between popes and emperors, and they were also used
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. Entering the peninsula in 1310, Henry proclaimed himself above all parties and received the homage of leaders of both of the chief factions; in Jan., 1311, he was crowned king of the Lombards at Milan, a Guelph city. A revolt occurred in Milan, however, when Henry levied taxes on the city to support his army; although the revolt was suppressed, it drove Henry into the Ghibelline camp and precipitated war with the Guelph cities. Henry did not reach Rome until the following year, where on June 29, 1312, he was crowned Holy Roman emperor. Leaving Rome, he besieged Florence, but without success; in 1313, having allied himself with King Frederick IIFrederick II,
1272–1337, king of Sicily (1296–1337), 3d son of Peter III of Aragón. When his brother, who was king of Sicily, became (1291) king of Aragón as James II, Frederick was his regent in Sicily.
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 of Sicily, he pronounced the ban of the empire against King Robert of Naples, who opposed Henry's policy in Italy. While preparing to attack Robert, Henry died of fever. Henry VII's abortive Italian campaign only served to prove the futility of any attempt to revive the ancient imperial policy at a time when the papacy and S Italy were controlled by France and the N Italian towns were autonomous. Henry was succeeded by Holy Roman Emperor Louis IVLouis IV
or Louis the Bavarian,
1287?–1347, Holy Roman emperor (1328–47) and German king (1314–47), duke of Upper Bavaria. After the death of Holy Roman Emperor Henry VII the Luxemburg party among the electors set aside Henry's son, John of Luxemburg,
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See W. M. Bowsky, Henry VII in Italy (1960).

Henry VII,

1457–1509, king of England (1485–1509) and founder of the TudorTudor,
royal family that ruled England from 1485 to 1603. Its founder was Owen Tudor, of a Welsh family of great antiquity, who was a squire at the court of Henry V and who married that king's widow, Catherine of Valois.
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Claim to the Throne

Henry was the son of Edmund Tudor, earl of Richmond, who died before Henry was born, and Margaret BeaufortBeaufort, Margaret, countess of Richmond and Derby
, 1443–1509, English noblewoman, mother of Henry VII. She was the daughter and heiress of John, 1st duke of Somerset, and great-granddaughter of John of Gaunt, duke of Lancaster.
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, a descendant of Edward IIIEdward III,
1312–77, king of England (1327–77), son of Edward II and Isabella. Early Life

He was made earl of Chester in 1320 and duke of Aquitaine in 1325 and accompanied his mother to France in 1325.
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 through John of GauntJohn of Gaunt
[Mid. Eng. Gaunt=Ghent, his birthplace], 1340–99, duke of Lancaster; fourth son of Edward III of England. He married (1359) Blanche, heiress of Lancaster, and through her became earl (1361) and duke (1362) of Lancaster.
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, duke of Lancaster. Although the Beaufort line, which was originally illegitimate, had been specifically excluded (1407) from all claim to the throne, the death of the imprisoned Henry VI (1471) made Henry Tudor head of the house of Lancaster. At this point, however, the Yorkist Edward IV had established himself securely on the throne, and Henry, who had been brought up in Wales, fled to Brittany for safety.

The death of Edward IV (1483) and accession of Richard IIIRichard III,
1452–85, king of England (1483–85), younger brother of Edward IV. Created duke of Gloucester at Edward's coronation (1461), he served his brother faithfully during Edward's lifetime—fighting at Barnet and Tewkesbury and later invading Scotland.
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 left Henry the natural leader of the party opposing Richard, whose rule was very unpopular. Henry made an unsuccessful attempt to land in England during the abortive revolt (1483) of Henry StaffordStafford, Henry, 2d duke of Buckingham,
1454?–1483, English nobleman. He was the grandson of Humphrey Stafford, the 1st duke, whom he succeeded in 1460.
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, 2d duke of Buckingham. Thereafter he bided his time in France until 1485 when, aided by other English refugees, he landed in Wales. At the battle of Bosworth FieldBosworth Field,
Leicestershire, central England. It was the scene of the battle (1485) at which Richard III was killed and the crown was passed to his opponent, the earl of Richmond (Henry VII), first of the Tudors.
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 he defeated the royal forces of Richard, who was slain. Henry advanced to London, was crowned, and in 1486 fulfilled a promise made earlier to Yorkist dissidents to marry Edward IV's daughter, Elizabeth. He thus united the houses of York and Lancaster, founding the TudorTudor,
royal family that ruled England from 1485 to 1603. Its founder was Owen Tudor, of a Welsh family of great antiquity, who was a squire at the court of Henry V and who married that king's widow, Catherine of Valois.
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 royal dynasty.


Although Henry's accession marked the end of the Wars of the Roses, the early years of his reign were disturbed by Yorkist attempts to regain the throne. The first serious attempt, an uprising in favor of the imposter Lambert SimnelSimnel, Lambert
, c.1475–1525, imposter and pretender to the English throne. Little is known of his early life, but before 1486 he caught the attention of an Oxford priest, Richard Simon or Symonds, who trained him to impersonate Richard, duke of York, younger son of
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, was easily crushed (1487). The French invasion of Brittany aroused great antagonism in England, and ultimately, in concert with Spain and Archduke Maximilian (later Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian I), Henry led (1492) an army against Boulogne. He soon made peace with France, however.

In 1494, Henry sent Sir Edward PoyningsPoynings, Sir Edward,
1459–1521, English statesman. After taking part in an insurrection (1483) against Richard III, he fled to the Continent, where he joined the followers of Henry Tudor, earl of Richmond, who in 1485 ascended the English throne as Henry VII.
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 to Ireland to consolidate English rule there. Poynings drove out of Ireland the Yorkist pretender Perkin WarbeckWarbeck, Perkin,
1474?–1499, pretender to the English throne, b. Tournai. He lived in Flanders and later in Portugal and arrived in Ireland in the employ of a silk merchant in 1491.
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, who then sought support from the Scottish king, James IVJames IV,
1473–1513, king of Scotland (1488–1513), son and successor of James III. He was an able and popular king, and his reign was one of stability and progress for Scotland.
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. James attempted (1496) to invade England, but the next year, under pressure from Spain, he expelled Warbeck. The latter was defeated shortly thereafter in an attempted invasion of Cornwall. A truce (1497) between England and Scotland was followed by the marriage (1503) of Henry's sister Margaret TudorMargaret Tudor,
1489–1541, queen consort of James IV of Scotland; daughter of Henry VII of England and sister of Henry VIII. Her marriage (1503) to James was accompanied by a treaty of "perpetual peace" between Scotland and England, a peace that was ended when James
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 to James—a marriage that led ultimately to the union of the monarchies of England and Scotland.

Another threat to Henry's throne was posed by the Yorkist claimant Edmund de la Pole, earl of Suffolk (see under PolePole,
English noble family. The first member of importance was William de la Pole, d. 1366, a rich merchant who became the first mayor of Hull (1332) and a baron of the exchequer (1339).
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, family), who received some support on the Continent but in 1506 was surrendered to Henry by Philip of Burgundy (soon recognized as Philip IPhilip I
(Philip the Handsome), 1478–1506, Spanish king of Castile (1506), archduke of Austria, titular duke of Burgundy, son of Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian I and Mary of Burgundy.
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 of Castile). In 1501, Henry had married his son Arthur to Katharine of AragónKatharine of Aragón,
1485–1536, first queen consort of Henry VIII of England; daughter of Ferdinand II of Aragón and Isabella of Castile. In 1501 she was married to Arthur, eldest son of Henry VII.
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, daughter of Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain. After Arthur died in 1502, an agreement was reached by which Katharine was to marry Arthur's brother Henry (later Henry VIIIHenry VIII,
1491–1547, king of England (1509–47), second son and successor of Henry VII. Early Life

In his youth he was educated in the new learning of the Renaissance and developed great skill in music and sports.
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On the death of Philip I (1506) Henry VII, then a widower, proposed that he should marry Philip's widow and Katharine's sister, JoannaJoanna
(Joanna the Mad), 1479–1555, Spanish queen of Castile and León (1504–55), daughter of Ferdinand II and Isabella I. She succeeded to Castile and León at the death of her mother.
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, but Joanna's madness made the match impossible. The English king then opened unsuccessful negotiations for the marriage of his daughter Mary to Philip's son (later Holy Roman Emperor Charles V). Relations between Henry and Ferdinand became strained; the latter allied himself with the French while Henry arranged treaties with Maximilian. Shortly thereafter Henry contracted an illness from which he never recovered.

Character and Influence

Henry was an astute political leader. He established the Tudor tradition of strong rule tempered by a sense of justice. His marriage and his relentless suppression of Yorkist plots to regain the throne brought order out of the chaos of civil war. In his suppression of the recalcitrant nobles he was greatly assisted by the use of the court of Star ChamberStar Chamber,
ancient meeting place of the king of England's councilors in the palace of Westminster in London, so called because of stars painted on the ceiling. The court of the Star Chamber developed from the judicial proceedings traditionally carried out by the king and his
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 as a supremely powerful judiciary body. His diplomatic abilities kept England at peace, and he arranged a favorable commercial treaty with the Netherlands. England's navy was developed, and explorations in the New World began. In Henry's later years, however, his extortionist practices alienated many.


See biographies by R. Lockyer (1968), R. L. Storey (1968), and S. B. Chrimes (1973); A. F. Pollard, The Reign of Henry VII (1913–14); J. D. Mackie, The Earlier Tudors, 1485–1558 (1952); G. R. Elton, England under the Tudors (1955); A. F. Ida, Mercantile Policies of Henry VII (1986); T. Penn, Winter King: Henry VII and the Dawn of Tudor England (2012).

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Henry VII

(1457–1509) deliverer of Richard III’s just deserts. [Br. Lit.: Richard III]
See: Justice
Allusions—Cultural, Literary, Biblical, and Historical: A Thematic Dictionary. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

Henry VII

1. ?1275--1313, Holy Roman Emperor (1312--13) and, as Henry VI, count of Luxembourg (1288--1313). He became king of the Lombards in 1313
2. 1457--1509, first Tudor king of England (1485--1509). He came to the throne (1485) after defeating Richard III at the Battle of Bosworth Field, ending the Wars of the Roses. Royal power and the prosperity of the country greatly increased during his reign
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
Besides being a proponent of the printing press, it is well known that Henry VII was a collector of books and a contributor to the Royal Library.
This alone provides a great service to historians of early Tudor England and points to some of the ways in which Henry VII and Henry VIII were able to realize their more radical ambitions at a local level.
At home and as part of diplomatic events abroad, Henry VII and Henry VIII provided elaborate courtly entertainments to demonstrate exacting and competitive taste as part of their international political agenda and dynastic establishment.
He argues that notions of sacred kingship fostered by Henry VII and the royal supremacy over the Church of England instituted by Henry VIII allowed English Protestants to replace the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist with a sacred royal presence that bound the ruler to church and people in a new communion.
Mussato's Historia Augusta ("Augustan History"), a chronicle of Henry VII's actions in Italy, and his De gestis Italicorum post Henricum VII Caesarem ("Concerning the Deeds of the Italians After Emperor Henry VII") are important sources for the history of 14th-century Italy.
Under the rule of the great Tudor monarchs Henry VII, Henry VIII, and Elizabeth I, the English nation grew and prospered, emerging in the seventeenth century as a major European power, the economic and military rival of both France and Spain.
(c1537 - 1554) The great - granddaughter of Henry VII and for nine days queen of England.
Henry VII Picture from the Daily Mirror archives, searchable at
Professor Peter Stead suggested that the iconic landmark could commemorate Henry VII, although he was "perfectly happy" with it continuing to be referred to as the Second Severn Crossing.
1509: Henry VII died aged 52 and his second son acceded to the throne as Henry VIII.
Editors Lake, Lehmann, and Wells present students, academics, researchers, and general interest readers with a collection of academic papers and scholarly articles that provide an overview ShakespeareAEs plays King John and Henry VII. The editors have organized the contributions that make up the main body of the text in two parts devoted to each of the plays, containing introductions to the plays, textual analyses, and historical perspectives on each.
Cecily outlived both kings and survived to see her granddaughter, Elizabeth of York, marry Henry VII, first sovereign of the house of Tudor.