Could Edward IV's plans have come together?

Edward IV planned grand marriages for his children, but is it right to assume any of them could have actually come together even if Edward had lived a few years longer? England's financial state wasn't particularly good and wouldn't be for several decades more; Edward's marriages were probably beyond his means. Edward Prince of Wales marrying Anne of Brittany would certainly have caused a war with France that Britain could ill afford and had iffy chances of winning.
 
What were the plans for the (seven) surviving children, again?
Elizabeth to Emperor Maximilian (or future Charles VIII)
Cecily to the king of Scots
Mary to the king of Denmark (although Mary predeceased Edward, so depends on the POD I guess)
Edward V to Anne of Brittany
Anne to Philipp the Fair of Burgundy
Katherine to Juan, prince de los Asturias
 
What were the plans for the (seven) surviving children, again?
  • Elizabeth - betrothed to the future Charles VIII in 1475, broken off 1482
  • Mary - reportedly plans to marry John, king of Denmark
  • Cecily - betrothed first to the future James IV in 1474, later to the Duke of Albany
  • Edward - betrothed to Anne of Brittany in 1480
  • Richard - married Anne de Mowbray, Countess of Norfolk when they were children, Anne died in 1481
  • Anne - betrothed to the future Philip I of Castile in 1480
  • Catherine - betrothed to John, Prince of Asturias
  • Bridget - probably always intended for the Church
 
The short answer is no. The long answer is that many of the plans Edward had were unpractical and, in the case of the Prince of Wales, more likely than not intended to be impossible so that he could work quietly on better matches for his son while being able to point to an ongoing betrothal when offered potential bride he didn't want for him, in addition to letting France know England needed to be kept happy. Most likely only one of the plans hatched, Cecily to the King of Scotland, would come to be.
 
The short answer is no. The long answer is that many of the plans Edward had were unpractical and, in the case of the Prince of Wales, more likely than not intended to be impossible so that he could work quietly on better matches for his son while being able to point to an ongoing betrothal when offered potential bride he didn't want for him, in addition to letting France know England needed to be kept happy. Most likely only one of the plans hatched, Cecily to the King of Scotland, would come to be.
I'm inclined to agree with you on most of the matches, but I wanted to ask about Edward and Anne's marriages, as their betrothals were part of alliances Edward made with other countries. Should they be taken somewhat more seriously?
 
I'm inclined to agree with you on most of the matches, but I wanted to ask about Edward and Anne's marriages, as their betrothals were part of alliances Edward made with other countries. Should they be taken somewhat more seriously?
As opposed to the other matches that were merely for shits and giggles? All these matches WERE part of an alliance network (namely to contain France).

The problem I could see coming up is that Edward was loathe to cough up dowries for his daughters. And the dowry for TWO future empresses (Elizabeth/Anne of York) or a "double" queen (Aragon+Castile) would no doubt have been considerable expense. However, in the words of a conemporary, Edward wished for his daughters to make these matches with nothing but their looks.

As to which are likely? @mcdnab can correct me but weren't negotiations for Elizabeth to Maximilian rather progressed when Edward IV died?
 
Elizabeth to Emperor Maximilian (or future Charles VIII)
Cecily to the king of Scots

Mary to the king of Denmark (although Mary predeceased Edward, so depends on the POD I guess)
Edward V to Anne of Brittany
Anne to Philipp the Fair of Burgundy
Katherine to Juan, prince de los Asturias
  • Elizabeth - betrothed to the future Charles VIII in 1475, broken off 1482
  • Mary - reportedly plans to marry John, king of Denmark
  • Cecily - betrothed first to the future James IV in 1474, later to the Duke of Albany
  • Edward - betrothed to Anne of Brittany in 1480
  • Richard - married Anne de Mowbray, Countess of Norfolk when they were children, Anne died in 1481
  • Anne - betrothed to the future Philip I of Castile in 1480
  • Catherine - betrothed to John, Prince of Asturias
  • Bridget - probably always intended for the Church
I just noticed - most of the proposed betrothals to Edward’s daughters were to younger boys.
 
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The trouble with any of the matches England proposed under Edward IV wasn't that he didn't want to spend the money, but that they probably couldn't even if they wanted to. Edward IV didn't accept France's tithe because he was lazy, but because the English coffers were getting very lean during this time. Under Henry VI of England and Marguerite of Anjou, there had been massive economic mismanagement, and while this had been minimized under the Yorkist regime (Elizabeth Wydville had, initially, less than half the staff that her predecessar had kept), England was in such a position that upon negotiations with Burgundy for a match between the Princess Anne and Philip of Burgundy, they still hadn't paid most of Margaret of York's dowry. The betrothal between Elizabeth of York and the Dauphin was, in part, built upon the idea that England could prevent another war, end the questioning of the new regime, and get rid of a princess for nothing, all in one move. The Cecily match was essentially the same thing. The trouble is that no other countries were as unfortunate in position as France and Scotland, and even in those cases France decided that they'd rather play nice with Burgundy than spend a fortune on Edward.

Had Edward lived, say, another decade, it's hard to say what would have happened. On top of the possibility of more children (Elizabeth Wydville was about 42/43 when Bridget was born, her mother had her final child around the same age if not a year or two older, and she was even considered briefly as a bride for the King of Scots in her widowhood, where it was claimed she was still capable of bearing children), the political climate of Europe shifted to much during this time it's hard to say what might have happened. One thing you can be pretty sure of is that Charles VIII of France is going to have to marry Anne I, Duchess of Brittany in order to prevent her from ending up elsewhere, so that leaves Margaret of Burgundy free to marry elsewhere. While I can definitely see her still ending up in Spain, it's equally likely her step-grandmother will push for England. If that happens, I can't see a doubly match between Anne and Philip, and quite honestly there 's difficulty in predicting where everyone ends up. Here's some potential matches that could end up getting pushed through:

  • Elizabeth of York (b.1466) m. Manuel I of Portugal (b.1469)
    • Now we know France is going to fall through, and in my opinion I can see Edward IV getting annoyed as the Emperor and King of France fight over Anne of Brittany, who was meant to be his son's bride. Portugal is a safe bet for England, Manuel is the right age, titled and close to the throne. It isn't the grand match initially envisioned, but a strong one from most perspectives. The fact he ends up King of Portugal is a fun twist.
  • Cecily of York (b.1469) m. James IV of Scotland (b.1473)
    • Not much to say. It was in line to happen before her father died, the Scots only ended it when she was declared illegitimate and once there was a new English Princess they didn't want the old one.
  • Edward V of England (b.1470) m. Margaret of Burgundy (b.1480) or Isabella of Aragon & Castile (b.1470)
    • I can see this going two ways. Either Margaret of York gets her way and her step-granddaughter is married to her nephew, or Edward gets greedy, and his daughter is able to convince the recently widowed Isabella that her brother is great, she's too young to mourn forever and England is great. I'd probably lean towards Margaret of Burgundy here but it'd depend on what you wanted to happen.
  • Richard, Duke of York (b.1473) m. Margaret of Burgundy (b.1480), or an English heiress such as Anne St. Leger (b.1474), or Bianca Maria Sforza (b.1472)
    • While a foreign match is possible, I do see them trying to get him another heiress. If they can find one is another discussion, but let's say upon Edward's death in the 1490s Richard is probably unmatched.
  • Anne of York (b.1475) m. Maximilian I, Holy Roman Emperor (b.1459)
    • This is probably the only match I could see happening in the long run, although I'd be interested in any other options. But in the time between Anne of Brittany is married off to France and when he married Bianca Maria Sforza IRL, I could see an English match happening if just because he'll want to cement the alliance against France again.
  • Catherine of York (b.1479) m. Philibert II, Duke of Savoy (b.1478) or Edward Plantagenet, Earl of Warwick (b.1475)
    • It's hard to say what might happen here, but I thought that Savoy would be a solid match, particularly after Bona of Savoy was snubbed by Edward years prior. If not Savoy, I could see a domestic match to the Earl of Warwick, maybe following her father's death in order to welcome him back into the family fold.
  • Bridget of York (b.1480) m. God (b.????)
Now some of these are probably stretches, but I think that unless we see all the Princesses off like Bridget, we'll see them married off in around the 1490s.
 
I think an Elizabeth of York and Maximilian match and Richard, duke of York marrying Anne of Brittany is possible, it is less threatening to France, I think, another funny match that could happen is Joanna of Portugal and Charles VIII.
 
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The trouble with any of the matches England proposed under Edward IV wasn't that he didn't want to spend the money, but that they probably couldn't even if they wanted to. Edward IV didn't accept France's tithe because he was lazy, but because the English coffers were getting very lean during this time. Under Henry VI of England and Marguerite of Anjou, there had been massive economic mismanagement, and while this had been minimized under the Yorkist regime (Elizabeth Wydville had, initially, less than half the staff that her predecessar had kept), England was in such a position that upon negotiations with Burgundy for a match between the Princess Anne and Philip of Burgundy, they still hadn't paid most of Margaret of York's dowry. The betrothal between Elizabeth of York and the Dauphin was, in part, built upon the idea that England could prevent another war, end the questioning of the new regime, and get rid of a princess for nothing, all in one move. The Cecily match was essentially the same thing. The trouble is that no other countries were as unfortunate in position as France and Scotland, and even in those cases France decided that they'd rather play nice with Burgundy than spend a fortune on Edward.

Had Edward lived, say, another decade, it's hard to say what would have happened. On top of the possibility of more children (Elizabeth Wydville was about 42/43 when Bridget was born, her mother had her final child around the same age if not a year or two older, and she was even considered briefly as a bride for the King of Scots in her widowhood, where it was claimed she was still capable of bearing children), the political climate of Europe shifted to much during this time it's hard to say what might have happened. One thing you can be pretty sure of is that Charles VIII of France is going to have to marry Anne I, Duchess of Brittany in order to prevent her from ending up elsewhere, so that leaves Margaret of Burgundy free to marry elsewhere. While I can definitely see her still ending up in Spain, it's equally likely her step-grandmother will push for England. If that happens, I can't see a doubly match between Anne and Philip, and quite honestly there 's difficulty in predicting where everyone ends up. Here's some potential matches that could end up getting pushed through:

  • Elizabeth of York (b.1466) m. Manuel I of Portugal (b.1469)
    • Now we know France is going to fall through, and in my opinion I can see Edward IV getting annoyed as the Emperor and King of France fight over Anne of Brittany, who was meant to be his son's bride. Portugal is a safe bet for England, Manuel is the right age, titled and close to the throne. It isn't the grand match initially envisioned, but a strong one from most perspectives. The fact he ends up King of Portugal is a fun twist.
  • Cecily of York (b.1469) m. James IV of Scotland (b.1473)
    • Not much to say. It was in line to happen before her father died, the Scots only ended it when she was declared illegitimate and once there was a new English Princess they didn't want the old one.
  • Edward V of England (b.1470) m. Margaret of Burgundy (b.1480) or Isabella of Aragon & Castile (b.1470)
    • I can see this going two ways. Either Margaret of York gets her way and her step-granddaughter is married to her nephew, or Edward gets greedy, and his daughter is able to convince the recently widowed Isabella that her brother is great, she's too young to mourn forever and England is great. I'd probably lean towards Margaret of Burgundy here but it'd depend on what you wanted to happen.
  • Richard, Duke of York(b.1473) m. Margaret of Burgundy (b.1480), or an English heiress such as Anne St. Leger (b.1474), or Bianca Maria Sforza (b.1472)
    • While a foreign match is possible, I do see them trying to get him another heiress. If they can find one is another discussion, but let's say upon Edward's death in the 1490s Richard is probably unmatched.
  • Anne of York (b.1475) m. Maximilian I, Holy Roman Emperor(b.1459)
    • This is probably the only match I could see happening in the long run, although I'd be interested in any other options. But in the time between Anne of Brittany is married off to France and when he married Bianca Maria Sforza IRL, I could see an English match happening if just because he'll want to cement the alliance against France again.
  • Catherine of York (b.1479) m. Philibert II, Duke of Savoy (b.1478) or Edward Plantagenet, Earl of Warwick(b.1475)
    • It's hard to say what might happen here, but I thought that Savoy would be a solid match, particularly after Bona of Savoy was snubbed by Edward years prior. If not Savoy, I could see a domestic match to the Earl of Warwick, maybe following her father's death in order to welcome him back into the family fold.
  • Bridget of York (b.1480) m. God (b.????)
Now some of these are probably stretches, but I think that unless we see all the Princesses off like Bridget, we'll see them married off in around the 1490s.
I think these are realistic options overall, though could Anne of York be perhaps a bit too young for Maximilian, especially with Elizabeth of York around? I suppose it's a question of whether Max would rather England (Anne) or Castile+Aragon (Joanna) for Philip.
 
The trouble with any of the matches England proposed under Edward IV wasn't that he didn't want to spend the money, but that they probably couldn't even if they wanted to. Edward IV didn't accept France's tithe because he was lazy, but because the English coffers were getting very lean during this time. Under Henry VI of England and Marguerite of Anjou, there had been massive economic mismanagement, and while this had been minimized under the Yorkist regime (Elizabeth Wydville had, initially, less than half the staff that her predecessar had kept), England was in such a position that upon negotiations with Burgundy for a match between the Princess Anne and Philip of Burgundy, they still hadn't paid most of Margaret of York's dowry. The betrothal between Elizabeth of York and the Dauphin was, in part, built upon the idea that England could prevent another war, end the questioning of the new regime, and get rid of a princess for nothing, all in one move. The Cecily match was essentially the same thing. The trouble is that no other countries were as unfortunate in position as France and Scotland, and even in those cases France decided that they'd rather play nice with Burgundy than spend a fortune on Edward.

Had Edward lived, say, another decade, it's hard to say what would have happened. On top of the possibility of more children (Elizabeth Wydville was about 42/43 when Bridget was born, her mother had her final child around the same age if not a year or two older, and she was even considered briefly as a bride for the King of Scots in her widowhood, where it was claimed she was still capable of bearing children), the political climate of Europe shifted to much during this time it's hard to say what might have happened. One thing you can be pretty sure of is that Charles VIII of France is going to have to marry Anne I, Duchess of Brittany in order to prevent her from ending up elsewhere, so that leaves Margaret of Burgundy free to marry elsewhere. While I can definitely see her still ending up in Spain, it's equally likely her step-grandmother will push for England. If that happens, I can't see a doubly match between Anne and Philip, and quite honestly there 's difficulty in predicting where everyone ends up. Here's some potential matches that could end up getting pushed through:

  • Elizabeth of York (b.1466) m. Manuel I of Portugal (b.1469)
    • Now we know France is going to fall through, and in my opinion I can see Edward IV getting annoyed as the Emperor and King of France fight over Anne of Brittany, who was meant to be his son's bride. Portugal is a safe bet for England, Manuel is the right age, titled and close to the throne. It isn't the grand match initially envisioned, but a strong one from most perspectives. The fact he ends up King of Portugal is a fun twist.
  • Cecily of York (b.1469) m. James IV of Scotland (b.1473)
    • Not much to say. It was in line to happen before her father died, the Scots only ended it when she was declared illegitimate and once there was a new English Princess they didn't want the old one.
  • Edward V of England (b.1470) m. Margaret of Burgundy (b.1480) or Isabella of Aragon & Castile (b.1470)
    • I can see this going two ways. Either Margaret of York gets her way and her step-granddaughter is married to her nephew, or Edward gets greedy, and his daughter is able to convince the recently widowed Isabella that her brother is great, she's too young to mourn forever and England is great. I'd probably lean towards Margaret of Burgundy here but it'd depend on what you wanted to happen.
  • Richard, Duke of York(b.1473) m. Margaret of Burgundy (b.1480), or an English heiress such as Anne St. Leger (b.1474), or Bianca Maria Sforza (b.1472)
    • While a foreign match is possible, I do see them trying to get him another heiress. If they can find one is another discussion, but let's say upon Edward's death in the 1490s Richard is probably unmatched.
  • Anne of York (b.1475) m. Maximilian I, Holy Roman Emperor(b.1459)
    • This is probably the only match I could see happening in the long run, although I'd be interested in any other options. But in the time between Anne of Brittany is married off to France and when he married Bianca Maria Sforza IRL, I could see an English match happening if just because he'll want to cement the alliance against France again.
  • Catherine of York (b.1479) m. Philibert II, Duke of Savoy (b.1478) or Edward Plantagenet, Earl of Warwick(b.1475)
    • It's hard to say what might happen here, but I thought that Savoy would be a solid match, particularly after Bona of Savoy was snubbed by Edward years prior. If not Savoy, I could see a domestic match to the Earl of Warwick, maybe following her father's death in order to welcome him back into the family fold.
  • Bridget of York (b.1480) m. God (b.????)
Now some of these are probably stretches, but I think that unless we see all the Princesses off like Bridget, we'll see them married off in around the 1490s.
A match with France will ONLY fall through if Marie of Burgundy still has her horseriding accident. So, should she NOT and goes on to have four or five kids (of which she has more than one boy), France will have no interest in throwing over Elizabeth of York to marry Margarethe of Austria.

Although, having Elizabeth as queen of France makes the ANTI-French nature of the remaining matches to Burgundy, Spain and Brittany difficult (Scotland and Denmark were French allies traditionally)
 
A match with France will ONLY fall through if Marie of Burgundy still has her horseriding accident. So, should she NOT and goes on to have four or five kids (of which she has more than one boy), France will have no interest in throwing over Elizabeth of York to marry Margarethe of Austria.

Although, having Elizabeth as queen of France makes the ANTI-French nature of the remaining matches to Burgundy, Spain and Brittany difficult (Scotland and Denmark were French allies traditionally)
Actually, having Mary of Burgundy survive is a good POD.
 

Grey Wolf

Gone Fishin'
In this period you make marriage alliances young knowing that half or so of them won't happen due to childhood mortality or the shifting sands of fate.

You don't feel depressed, or disheartened, or defeated especially when one falls through because if your child still lives you can make a different one
 
A match with France will ONLY fall through if Marie of Burgundy still has her horseriding accident. So, should she NOT and goes on to have four or five kids (of which she has more than one boy), France will have no interest in throwing over Elizabeth of York to marry Margarethe of Austria.

Although, having Elizabeth as queen of France makes the ANTI-French nature of the remaining matches to Burgundy, Spain and Brittany difficult (Scotland and Denmark were French allies traditionally)
That isn't necessarily true. The English match only makes sense if France has tensions with Burgundy, and OTL the reason why they switched, which was already in the works prior to the Duchess of Burgundy's death and probably would have gone through if she'd lived, was to end England's diplomatic stranglehold on France. It was deemed easier to live with an independent Burgundy in the short term and have France stop paying a tithe to Edward like he was their liege lord. This shift was obvious to Edward, who we can see courting other allies prior to his death in order to offset the sudden shift in dynamic. Hell, he'd promised Burgundy military support (in a round about way, agreeing to let them hire English archers and paying them a loan to do so) in order to try and renew the former dynamic.
 
A match with France will ONLY fall through if Marie of Burgundy still has her horseriding accident. So, should she NOT and goes on to have four or five kids (of which she has more than one boy), France will have no interest in throwing over Elizabeth of York to marry Margarethe of Austria.

Although, having Elizabeth as queen of France makes the ANTI-French nature of the remaining matches to Burgundy, Spain and Brittany difficult (Scotland and Denmark were French allies traditionally)
From what I can tell, Max wouldn't have minded match with both England and Castile+Aragon, but if he had to pick one, it would be the latter. England's just not a safe bet right now. That said, maybe a son of Max and Elizabeth of York could become Emperor while Philip rules Burgundy?
 
From what I can tell, Max wouldn't have minded match with both England and Castile+Aragon, but if he had to pick one, it would be the latter. England's just not a safe bet right now. That said, maybe a son of Max and Elizabeth of York could become Emperor while Philip rules Burgundy?
The son of Max with Elizabeth marries Maria of Aragon and Joanna is the one married off to Manuel, in this case a marriage between Anne of Burgundy and Philip of Burgundy is possible.
 
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From what I can tell, Max wouldn't have minded match with both England and Castile+Aragon, but if he had to pick one, it would be the latter. England's just not a safe bet right now. That said, maybe a son of Max and Elizabeth of York could become Emperor while Philip rules Burgundy?
Well you need to remember who the Yorkist England was Burgundy’s first choice of ally at that time (thanks also to Margaret of York) unlike the Tudor one (who by the way had no princess of the right age for Philip, as the future Karl V was engaged to Mary Tudor the younger). Maybe Castile/Aragon was a better match for Maximilian but not at the price of breaking the long standing engagement between Philip and Anne of York (who by the way would be already married by some years when the match between Philip and Juan was arranged in OTL)

Philip and Juana were engaged in OTL in 1496, while an ATL wedding between Philip and Anne will be likely in 1493 (or still between late 1492 and 1494) preventing any chance of a Philip/Juana match here
 
Elizabeth married in France, Cecily in Scotland, Anne in Burgundy, Katherine maybe in Spain with Anne of Brittany married to either Edward or Richard is a pretty plausible scenario if Mary of Burgundy survive.
If Mary died as OTL I think who Charles VIII will marry Margaret of Burgundy as the Yorkist England will be able to support Brittany and Duchess Anne‘s long standing engagement will be honored. Elizabeth of York in this scenario will be likely Maximilian’s second wife as Manuel, Duke of Beja is too low ranking for her. Cecily, Anne and Catherine will be most likely married respectively in Scotland, Burgundy and Spain...
 
If John of Austurias dies as OTL, even if he marries Katherine first, then assuming Philip the Fair marries Anne as planned TTL, then Joanna the Mad might still be available, meaning the Spanish Crown is up for grabs as it were.
 
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