Henry Tudor Vows to Marry Elizabeth of York – December 25, 1483

On this day Henry Tudor vowed to marry Elizabeth of York, uniting the warring factions of York and Lancaster. Momentum had been building for Henry Tudor (in exile in Brittany) since Richard III usurped the throne from his nephews. Henry and Jasper were being joined at the Chateau L’Hermine in the coastal town of Vannes by a growing number of English exiles. Henry was active in writing letters to those he hoped to bring over to his side. One such letter survives:

“Right trusty, worshipful and honourable good friends, I greet you well. Being given to understand your good devoir and entreaty to advance me to the furtherance of my rightful claim, due and lineal inheritance of that crown and for the just depriving of that homicide and unnatural tyrant which now unjustly bears dominion over you, I give you to understand that no Christian heart can be more full of joy and gladness than the heart of me, your poor exiled friend, who will, upon the instant of your sure advertising what power you will make ready and what captains and leaders you get to conduct, be prepared to pass over the sea with such force as my friends here are preparing for me. And if I have such good speed and success as I wish, according to your desire, I shall ever be most forward to remember and wholly to requite this your great and moving loving kindness in my just quarrel. Given under our signet H
I pray you to give credence to the messenger of that he shall impart to you.”