Edward IV of England

King from 1461 to 1470 and 1471 to 1483

Edward IV (28 April 1442 – 9 April 1483) was King of England from 4 March 1461 to 3 October 1470,[1][2] and from 11 April 1471 until his death in 1483. He was a main figure in the Wars of the Roses. The Wars of the Roses were a series of civil wars in England. They were fought between the Yorkist and Lancastrian groups between 1455 and 1487.

Edward IV
King Edward IV.jpg
King of England, Lord of Ireland
First reign4 March 1461 – 3 October 1470
Coronation28 June 1461
PredecessorHenry VI
SuccessorHenry VI
Second reign11 April 1471 – 9 April 1483
PredecessorHenry VI
SuccessorEdward V
Born28 April 1442
Rouen, Normandy, France
Died9 April 1483 (aged 40)
Westminster, Middlesex, England
Burial18 April 1483
HouseYork (Plantagenet)
FatherRichard, Duke of York
MotherCecily Neville
SignatureEdward IV's signature

Edward became the leader of the House of York when his father, Richard, Duke of York died. He died at the Battle of Wakefield in December 1460. Edward and his forces beat the Lancastrian armies at Mortimer's Cross and Towton in early 1461. After this, he deposed King Henry VI and became King of England. In 1464, He married Elizabeth Woodville. This led to conflict with his chief advisor, Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick, known as the "Kingmaker". Warwick wanted Edward to marry a princess from another country. In 1470, a revolt was led by Warwick and Edward's brother George, Duke of Clarence. It briefly re-installed Henry VI as king.

Edward fled to Flanders. In Flanders, he gathered support. His forces invaded England in March 1471. After winning the battles of Barnet and Tewkesbury, he became king again. Soon after this, Henry VI was found dead in the Tower of London. Edward ruled in relative peace for the next twelve years. He died suddenly in April 1483. He was succeeded by his son Edward V, but Edward IV's brother Richard III soon took the throne.


Edward was seen as a strong and popular king. He was also tall at 6 feet 4 inches (193 centimetres). This was very tall for a man in the 15th century. His height, as a monarch, was only passed by Peter I of Russia who was 6 feet 8 inches (203 centimetres) tall.


  1. Alison, Weir (2008). Britain's Royal Family: the Complete Genealogy. p. 135. ISBN 9780099539735.
  2. "Edward IV". Archontology.org. 14 March 2010. Archived from the original on 18 February 2010. Retrieved 20 June 2022. Set sail on 2 October 1470 from England and took refuge in Burgundy; deposed as King of England on 3 October 1470