Mural in the Royal Exchange, Offer of the Kingship to Richard Duke of Gloucester at Baynards Castle June 26 1483 , Sigismund Goetz
On this day 27 June 1483 no doubt King Richard, and his wife Anne, both awoke shell shocked. Perhaps they had slept little as they no doubt took in the significance of these life changing events. For their lives would never be the same again and the years at Middleham, where perhaps they had been their happiest were over, although their small son, Edward, would remain there, perhaps with their hearts. This was the first complete day of his reign having been asked to take the crown by the Three Estates on the previous day at his mother’s, Cicely Neville, house at Baynard Castle. Accept he did and perhaps with mixed feelings for as we know it meant putting aside his brother’s, Edward, heir, Edward V. Its well known the events that led up to this momentuous day and the tragic outcome three years later at Bosworth Field. But lets focus on that wonderful and joyful day, when Richard’s and his closest followers hopes were fresh, new and brave.
Baynards Castle. Cicely Neville’s London home and where Richard Duke of Gloucester accepted the offer of the throne from the lords and commons. 17th century artists impression.
After formally accepting the throne, the next day 27th June he went on foot and with a ‘great traine’ to Westminster Hall where he sat himself on the marble throne and addressed the assembly. With his loyal friend John Howard on his right hand side and the Duke of Suffolk on his left, Richard called before him ‘the Jugys Commaundyng theym in Rigth streygh maner that they Justly & duly shuld mynystir his lawe withowth delay or ffavour, Afftyr which commandement soo to theym govyn and othyr Ceremonyes there ffynsshid, he then good in to the abbay, where at the chirch dore he was mett wyth procescion, and by the abbot or his depute there delyverd to hym the Ceptre of Seynt Edward, he then yood ynto the Shryne and there offyrd..”(1)
And so begun the reign of one of the most enlightened kings ever to sit upon the throne of England – LOYALTIE ME LIE.…
If you liked this post you might be interested in:
1) Great Chronicle p232 Richard III The Road to Bosworth P W Hammond & Anne Sutton