The Tudor Society

1 November 1456 – Death of Edmund Tudor, 1st Earl of Richmond

Tomb_of_Edmund_TudorToday marks the anniversary of the death of Edmund Tudor, 1st Earl of Richmond, on 1st November 1456. He died from the plague at Carmarthen Castle.

Thank you to Sarah Bryson for writing this article on Edmund for us.

Henry Tudor, King Henry VII, was the founder of the Tudor Dynasty. His mother was the imposing Margaret Beaufort who risked everything to see her son on the throne and in turn the houses of Lancaster and York united through the marriage of her son to Elizabeth of York, daughter of Edward IV. But who was Henry Tudor's father? While so much is known about Henry's mother, his father is a much more elusive figure and sadly he did not live to see his only son and heir claim the English throne.


There are 6 comments Go To Comment

  1. T

    Is there more information about Edmond Tudor than what’s written above?. I can’t seem to find anymore information


    1. C - Post Author

      I haven’t seen a biography of Edmund Tudor but there is The Making of the Tudor Dynasty by Ralph A. Griffiths and Roger S. Thomas which does give information on Edmund Tudor. Thomas did a PhD on him and is his biographer for Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. If you’re a subscriber to Oxford DNB, his bio of Edmund is very detailed and well worth a read.

  2. T


  3. R

    Is the remains still in the Tomb? It would be interesting to get high resolution images and examine more about his cause of death as I read recently that a so called expert believed that Edmund Tudor was in fact done away with. Unfortunately, this so called expert did not cite any research or evidence for this claim and as it was a newspaper article and not a journal it is probably to be taken with a pinch of salt. It is also claimed by John Ashdown Hill in his recent books on Eleanor Butler and the Wars of the Roses that Owen Tudor was not the father of Edmund Tudor but that he was the son of Edmund Beaufort, thus his name. He can only cite circumstantial evidence such as the fact he was the lover of Queen Katherine de Valois at the same time as Owen and that it was Edmund Beaufort that she wanted to marry Edmund Beaufort, but was prevented by the council and the resulting act of Parliament that forbade the remarriage of a Dowager Queen without royal assent. Katherine then fell for her steward Owen Tudor, who was her lover at the same time as Beaufort, or there was an overlap as we say now, whom she then ‘married’ and went on to bare him four sons, this Edmund being the eldest. He is among a small group of historians who question the marriage took place and the legitimacy of Edmund Tudor and his brothers. King Henry vi did later declare them legitimate and conferred all sorts of titles on them, including the Earldome of Richmond. Richard Bretherton, a well known Tudor historian and a Welshman has written a book on Henry Tudor and Jasper Tudor and is currently planning one on Edmund Tudor and then Owen Tudor. He has shown that the marriage probably did take place, regardless of the council and Parliament. Personally I think that Katherine was married to Owen Tudor, but it is possible that Edmund Tudor could have been the son of Edmund Beaufort, as it was a question at the time, plus some circumstances do support the idea. The only way we can know Is via DNA testing and profiling, but I am not advocating opening up the tomb of Edmund Tudor and I am not sure if Owen Tudor is available to test as I don’t know what happened to his body after his unlawful execution. The Beaufort DNA testing may also be problematic as some of these people are also missing after their butchering in the Wars of the Roses. The DNA of Richard lll through up some interesting mysteries as two paternal accidents were exposed on the male line, the Beauforts being the chief suspects. The experts have said that they feel the accidents were later, although up to four generations back was also possible. The legitimacy of Henry Tudor and his mother was not in question, but he gained his crown on the battlefield in any event, a lawful way to do things in those days and the current royal family were foisted on us with the Act of Settlement. However, a closer look at the body would be interesting. A high resolution 3D mapping can be done with a camera inserted, this would do if you cannot open his tomb.

  4. M

    Is Sarah Bryson’s article just the one paragraph? I thought there would be more to it. Not complaining-just curious.

    1. C - Post Author

      No, sorry about that, there should have been a “read more…” link at the bottom. I’ll fix it now. Thanks for spotting that!

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1 November 1456 – Death of Edmund Tudor, 1st Earl of Richmond