Skip to comments.Battle of Towton, the birth of modern warfare and the killing of 1% of the population
Posted on 12/06/2010 7:45:21 PM PST by SunkenCiv
The Battle of Towton was one of the bloodiest battle to ever take place on English soil, with nearly 1% of the English population of the time killed during the battle. New finds on the site has produced the earliest evidence of the use of guns on the battle field.
The Battle of Towton took place on a snowy 29 March 1461 on high ground between the villages of Towton and Saxton in Yorkshire (about 12 miles (19 km) southwest of York and about 2 miles (3.2 km) south of Tadcaster).
The battle was one of the key battles of the Wars of the Roses. This civil war was fought between the Houses of York and Lancaster for control of the English throne. The result of battle was a decisive victory for the Yorkists. The Lancastrian army suffered heavy losses and was broken on the field of battle.
Towton was the largest battle ever fought in Britain with massive loss of life. It is estimated that between 50,000 and 80,000 soldiers fought in the battle, including 28 lords, which was nearly half of the nobles in England at that time, the majority of these were siding with the Lancastrian side.
One of the most commonly quoted figures for the order of battle is 42,000 for the Lancastrians and 36,000 for the Yorkists. While this is all based on various guesses by a variety of experts the one thing they all agree on is the Lancastrians started the battle with the larger force.
The battle resulted in massive loses on both sides and is regarded as the bloodiest battle ever fought on English soil. However what occurred at Towton on the day of the battle has been something of a mystery.
(Excerpt) Read more at archnews.co.uk ...
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I love history!
I never heard of this battle that took place exactly 500 years to the day before I was born. Proves that even a paunchy middle-aged guy can learn something new every day.
Of course I’m more proud that John Moses Browning’s Model 1911 officially entered service exactly 50 years before my birth on 3/29/1911.
Glad it was them and not me. :’)
:’) Of course, you realize that the calendar was adjusted between the time this battle was fought and 1961, so it wasn’t exactly 500 years. ;’)
Don’t mind me, I’m just causing trouble.
:’) Yeah, thanks. ;’)
Yeah, there was a little change around 1752 or so.
Stinking Lancastrians deserved what they got!
I support the Yorkists!!!
The damn Lancastrians produced the filthy Tudors.
The only Tudor worth anything was Elizabeth I
Me too. :)
In the English speaking world, it happened in October; uh, in *most* of the English speaking world. Most of the Catholic countries changed over in the 17th c I think. The worst to keep track of may be Sweden, that country kept changing to Gregorian, then chenging it back, etc. Russia stayed on the old calendar until Lenin took power.
I’m just glad everyone’s calmed down about it now. ;’)
“The 2nd Amendment follows right behind the 1st because some people are hard of hearing.”
Put your hands in the air. I have a HandeGonne. I’m taking that tag line. Don’t try to stop me, and nobody will get hurt.
Isn’t 1461 a little late to be called strictly medieval?
Well, doncha know the Dark Ages didn’t end until Luther and te 95 Theses? Then all was sweetness and light thereafter.... :-D
I support Richard III too.
All that information about him being a hunchback and killing his two nephews in the towers is TUDOR/Lancastrian propaganda!!!
Yeah, I know - there was an interruption of the space-time continuum, a disturbance in The Force...well, really what happened was that people got to work for 10 days for nothing (kind of like a tax increase), and the Obamas of the day blamed in on some dead, white, imperialist religious guys.
They actually dropped days from the calendar — but that meant they had to get the month’s work done in 22 days instead of 31. ;’)
:’) G’head, take it.
Actually, I wholeheartedly agree with that. Henry VII had one of his ruthless henchmen murder the little princes after they and their sisters had been relegitimized; the original act of Parliament which had delegitimized them and made Richard III the monarch was gathered up in (almost) all its copies and destroyed by Henry VII’s order. One or two copies managed to survive, to be rediscovered in the 20th c (if memory serves).
The reason the three kids were relegitimized was so Henry VII could marry a sister and have some sort of legalistic claim to the throne. But that meant the two brothers were then the rightful line, the elder being rightful king. So they had to be gotten rid of. Later, when his hired killer got on Henry’s wrong side (that happened a lot to Tudor employees) he signed a phony confession claiming that he had killed the princes but at the order of Richard III.
During some renovation work three hundred years ago, skeletons were found on the grounds of the Tower of London (often said to have been found under a stairway), they looked about right, and they were interred as the remains of the lost princes. In the early 20th c forensic examiners were given a look-see at the remains and determined that the dead had been too old to have died during the reign of Richard III. :’) It’s not now known who they were (say the defenders of the Tudors) or even what their age was, but further study using today’s techniques haven’t been permitted. Y’know, ‘cause these aren’t just anyone’s bones. ;’)
Richard III was betrayed during his final battle — a noble and his household who were supposedly loyal to him had been bought off by Henry; they pulled him from his horse without warning, and murdered him on the field. Whatever the accomplishments of the Tudor dynasty, it can’t be denied that each generation was hideously violent. The only ruler who didn’t manifest that way was Edward VI (Edward so-called the V was the elder of the two missing princes) and he didn’t live long enough to get there, imho.
No way, I think the phrase “got medieval on his ass” was coined because of the Battle of Towton. ;’)
“The only ruler who didnt manifest that way was Edward VI (Edward so-called the V was the elder of the two missing princes) and he didnt live long enough to get there, imho.”
I agree totally.
The Tudors were from evil seed, the offspring of a Welsh Gigolo, Owen Tudor.
I remember reading somewhere that there was picture of Richard III showing him with a hunchback and later analysis indicates the picture was ALTERED after the original painting by ADDING the hunchback.
I remember reading about that betrayal at Bosworth. I think the parties involved werer barons from the North of England.
Richard III was a warrior - a real fighter who engaged in battle with armor and hand weapons on horseback - NOT the activity of someone with a physical handicap. This is contrasted with the evil and weak body of Henry VII.
Something more than Richard III died at Bosworth Field. While the Plantagents could be cruel, NO ONE can deny that they were brave fighters and courageous warrior kings who fought in combat and not hidden behind their generals and troops. They really were story book kings unlike the depraved and weakened degenerates who succeeded them.
Thanks for those links. I will check them out.
The Plantagenets interested me since I read “Kings and Things”, and Costain’s series “The Cpnquering Family”, “The Magnificent Century” “The Three Edwards” and “The Last Plantagents” as a child.
The painting generally thought to be the portrait of Richard III is (if memory serves) just someone’s guess of who it supposed to portray — it wouldn’t have been displayed anywhere at court, anymore than those of the former wives of Hank 8.
But anyway, I’m not a royalist, and all of them are lucky I don’t have a time machine. Actually, my first stop would be in the 7th century, shhh, don’t tell anybody...
A college chum (speaking of time travel, and of the Plantagenets) said that if he could sit down with anyone from that era, it would be John of Gaunt, the “kingmaker”.
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