The War of the Roses was a war that determined who would become King of England. It was fought between the House of Lancaster, who were fought under the red rose, and the House of York, who fought under a white rose.

The war began on 22nd May 1455 and ended on 16th June 1487. It ended with Henry VII from the House of Lancaster becoming king, after Richard III died on the battlefield. Henry married Elizabeth from the House of York, an attempt to reunite the two houses (a medieval way of saying “families”.)


In 1422, Henry VI succeeded his father at just nine months old. He didn’t actually become the King of England until 1429, and King of France until 1431. He wasn’t very interested in politics and couldn’t control his court.

Because of this, he had a mental breakdown in 1453. Richard, the Duke of York, was made Lord Protector. Henry recovered in 1455, and a civil war started that would become known as the War of the Roses.

Battle of Bosworth

The Battle of Bosworth was the last major battle of the War of the Roses. It is also the most famous battle of the war. Richard III was killed during battle, making him the last English king to die in battle. After this battle, Henry VII became king.

A painting recreating the Battle of Bosworth
A painting recreating the Battle of Bosworth