King Edward’s great matter

Part 1 - Early 1483
After being forced to sign the Treaty of Arras and consigning his daughter Margaret and a consistent part of his late wife‘s inheritance Maximilian decided to remarry to Elizabeth of York (niece of his stepmother-in-law, older sister of his son‘s fiancé and rejected bride of the Dauphin), signing an anti-French alliance with Edward IV. Elizabeth arrived in Burgundy from England at the beginning of February and married Maximilian a couple of months before her father’s death in April.
Then Edward V became formally King of England under the regency of his uncle the Duke of Gloucester, who captured him during the journey from the Wales to London (his half-brother Richard Grey and his uncle Anthony Rivers also were captured and killed on Gloucester’s order). Edward was taken to the Tower of London and Gloucester was able to persuade Queen Dowager Elizabeth to consign him also her younger son, Richard of Shrewsbury, Duke of York and Norfolk who was escorted in the Tower together with his brother, while waiting for Edward’s coronation.
Then bishop Stillington confessed to Gloucester who he had married the late King Edward to the long dead lady Eleanor Talbot much before his secret wedding to the Dowager Queen Elizabeth and the hell exploded. Richard of Gloucester do not lose time in revealing that secret marriage, invalidating the wedding of Edward to Elizabeth Woodville and declaring their kids as illegitimate. As Edward, Earl of Warwick was excluded by the succession for his father’s attainder Richard proclame himself as legitimate King taking the name of Richard III and was crowned together with his wife Anne Neville, while their son Edward of Middleham was named Prince of Wales
 
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After being forced to sign the Treaty of Arras and consigning his daughter Margaret and a consistent part of his late wife inheritance Maximilian decided to remarry to Elizabeth of York (niece of his stepmother-in-law, older sister of his son‘s fiancé and rejected bride of the Dauphin), signing an anti-French alliance with Edward IV. Elizabeth depart for England in February marrying Maximilian shortly before her father’s death in April.
Then Edward V became formally King of England under the regency of his uncle the Duke of Gloucester, who capture him during the journey from the Wales to London (his half-brother Richard Grey and his uncle Anthony Rivers are captured and killed on Gloucester’s order). Edward is taken to the Tower of London and Gloucester is able to persuade Queen Dowager Elizabeth to consign him also her younger son, Richard of Shrewsbury, Duke of York and Norfolk who is escorted in the Tower together with his brother, while waiting for Edward’s coronation.
Then bishop Stillington confess to Gloucester who he had married the late King Edward to the long dead lady Eleanor Talbot much before his secret wedding to the Dowager Queen Elizabeth and the hell exploded. Richard of Gloucester do not lose time in revealing that secret marriage, invalidating the wedding of Edward to Elizabeth Woodville and declaring their kids as illegitimate. As Edward, Count of Warwick is excluded by the succession for his father’s attainder Richard proclame himself as legitimate King taking the name of Richard III and his crowned together with his wife Anne Neville, while their son Edward of Middleham is named as Prince of Wales

Just out of curiosity, would Richard try his OTL stunt with Elizabeth as wife to Maximilian? I've seen it said that if Liz had already been married abroad by the time Edward IV died, Richard wouldn't have risked it. And possibly Stillington would've kept his mouth shut or had it shut for him
 
Just out of curiosity, would Richard try his OTL stunt with Elizabeth as wife to Maximilian? I've seen it said that if Liz had already been married abroad by the time Edward IV died, Richard wouldn't have risked it. And possibly Stillington would've kept his mouth shut or had it shut for him
Yes, I am the first to say who this is pretty implausible (as I am believe who if Elizabeth is already married to a powerful ruler/heir Richard AND Stillington interest would be keeping Edward and Richard alive and ruling PLUS Max had legitimate Lancastrian blood from his mother) but this scenario keep running in my head AND exploring it a little can be fun...
I think who OTL Richard and Stillington were smarter than I am making them here but implausible do not mean impossible AND analyzing the most outrageous grants mande by Edward IV (in favor of his sister Anne of Exeter, brothers George of Clarence and Richard of Gloucester and son Richard of York) the worst was in favor of Richard so he was pretty used to play with his luck...
 
A Burgundian landing in Kent in support of Buckingham's Rebellion?
You will see... I do not know yet exactly what Buckingham will do here and what will happen with his rebellion as that will be likely impacted by Max&Liz wedding. Max for now will wait as his plans are long term (and not directly about England for now, at least not military plans)
 
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After being forced to sign the Treaty of Arras and consigning his daughter Margaret and a consistent part of his late wife inheritance Maximilian decided to remarry to Elizabeth of York (niece of his stepmother-in-law, older sister of his son‘s fiancé and rejected bride of the Dauphin), signing an anti-French alliance with Edward IV. Elizabeth depart for England in February marrying Maximilian shortly before her father’s death in April.
Then Edward V became formally King of England under the regency of his uncle the Duke of Gloucester, who capture him during the journey from the Wales to London (his half-brother Richard Grey and his uncle Anthony Rivers are captured and killed on Gloucester’s order). Edward is taken to the Tower of London and Gloucester is able to persuade Queen Dowager Elizabeth to consign him also her younger son, Richard of Shrewsbury, Duke of York and Norfolk who is escorted in the Tower together with his brother, while waiting for Edward’s coronation.
Then bishop Stillington confess to Gloucester who he had married the late King Edward to the long dead lady Eleanor Talbot much before his secret wedding to the Dowager Queen Elizabeth and the hell exploded. Richard of Gloucester do not lose time in revealing that secret marriage, invalidating the wedding of Edward to Elizabeth Woodville and declaring their kids as illegitimate. As Edward, Count of Warwick is excluded by the succession for his father’s attainder Richard proclame himself as legitimate King taking the name of Richard III and his crowned together with his wife Anne Neville, while their son Edward of Middleham is named as Prince of Wales
Actually, having his other son, Franz surviving will help in this situation...
 
Part 2 - June 1483 Maximilian of Austria
Vienna, around 15/20 June 1483 (just a little special, the rest of the story will follow the format of the first post)



After the death of his mother and specially after he married his first wife, taking the government of her lands Archduke Maximilian pretty much hated being in company of his father, Holy Roman Emperor Frederick III but for once the reasons for which that journey to Vienna, for presenting him his new bride, the English princess Elizabeth, was totally ruined were not related to his father or their strained relationship and different vision of the things... No, the reasons for his fury, incredulity and rage, totally mirrored by his father, were the last bad news just arrived from London, who had also reduced in tears the poor Elisabeth and Max was unable to blame the girl: between the journeys of the last six months - they had married just days before her seventeenth birthday - her state, as Elizabeth was already pregnant, and the succession of bad news from home that reaction was fully understandable. Edward IV’s death was a disgrace but he was unable to find adequate words for describing the action of his brother after that: first he had captured his nephew, the new King, together with his maternal uncle and half-brother, then had the latter two executed (so Elisabeth was crying for the deaths of her father, maternal uncle and half-brother and full of terror for the sort of her brothers, mother and sisters), then had incarcerated the young King in the Tower and persuaded - only God knew how - the Dowager Queen to consign him her other son who was sent in the Tower together with his brother, and after that had that damned bishop of his declaring who King Edward had taken another wife before the mother of his children! The confused Englishmen had believed their words and now the bastard had declared Archduchess Elisabeth and her siblings as illegitimate AND crowned himself as King. Margaret would have to listen him about her beloved brother once he would be back in the Netherlans - soon and likely without Elisabeth who would be safer in Vienna at this point. Luckily his father was angry at least as him and if he knew him well was already planning something and for once he was impatient to hear that: pushing his wedding to Mary of Burgundy was the only good thing his father had done for him, until now (at least in his mind).
-That Usurper and his bishop friend had done badly their maths if they think we will accept their declaration without doing nothing.- proclaimed the Emperor - I will send a message to His Holiness in Rome and we will see what the Holy See, who is the only one to have competence in that matter, will say about the validity of King Edward’s wedding and the legitimacy of his children. Someone will have soon a very bad surprise- finished the Emperor before calling his secretary and then a messenger for sending a very urgent and important letter in Rome.
Letter who would make the King Edward’s Great Matter an international case and change a lot of thing in Europe...
 
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This is going to be fun. Margaret of York is bound to fall in line - She'll know she needs to, if she's going to keep her popularity in Burgundy, and here, it's a choice between two branches of the York family. It's not like she's backing a Yorkist pretender against a Tudor monarch, so I don't see her backing Richard over Elizabeth and Maximillian. If only for the sake of her own safety...

Here's hoping that with their sister Holy Roman Empress, (IIRC), Elizabeth's little sisters get better marriages than they did OTL...
 
This is going to be fun. Margaret of York is bound to fall in line - She'll know she needs to, if she's going to keep her popularity in Burgundy, and here, it's a choice between two branches of the York family. It's not like she's backing a Yorkist pretender against a Tudor monarch, so I don't see her backing Richard over Elizabeth and Maximillian. If only for the sake of her own safety...

Here's hoping that with their sister Holy Roman Empress, (IIRC), Elizabeth's little sisters get better marriages than they did OTL...
Well, as Margaret encouraged the match between Maximilian and Elizabeth and share the govern/regency of Burgundy with him is not like she can support Richard here...
Plus Elizabeth of York is stunning, graceful smart and with a good character so Max has nothing of negative to say about his bride (sure he is not quite over Mary’s death but he has married Elisabeth less than a year after the death of his first wife AND she was comprensive about that and interested in Philip and Margaret’s welfare so)...

Do not worry (yet) for the girls... Right now they are in sanctuary with their mother and they will stay there (and if Maximilian can get the hands on them and also on Edward of Warwick and Margaret of Clarence he will know what doing with them)...
 
I don't think Richard would have made those moves with Elizabeth married to Maximilian.
Me neither... I am making him (and Stillington) likely more stupid than OTL... And I calculated who while this scenario is unlikely (as would ignore a most likely direct consequence of the POD) is not impossible: Richard after all was pretty desperate at Edward‘s death at that pushed him the to usurp his nephew so... His OTL attack on Edward’s escort and successive actions also were pretty risky moves
 
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France is gonna back Richard if he makes a stupid move. If for nothing else than to sow discord in england and to prevent Maximilian from aquiring England too. It will be a shitstorm to come.
 
France is gonna back Richard if he makes a stupid move. If for nothing else than to sow discord in england and to prevent Maximilian from aquiring England too. It will be a shitstorm to come.
France will NOT back Richard... Specially when they have not yet received Margaret of Austria-Burgundy and her dowry. Louis XI is not so stupid to renounce to what he has just recovered... Plus right now Archduchess Elisabeth’s brothers are still alive and Rome is still not involved in the matter as the letter with request of the Emperor of investigating the matter is just departed from Vienna.
Neither Maximilian or Richard are friends of France and with Maximilian married to Elizabeth of York they have no Lancastrian candidate to support plus France will have shortly big trouble of their own AND will be already unable to do much in another situation closer to home
In any case we have only three important events who will shake things in this stalemate a little before the end of the year (and NONE of that will be a rebellion/uprising)...
1484 will be an interesting year and I will not say anything else for now,
 
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Dickson's reputation is going to reach new levels of infamy ITTL.
Well, not more than OTL... here Richard III of England will be described with just few words and they will say of him: “in the end he was effectively Clarence’s brother, greedy and unable to repay with loyalty the royal favor who he had always received and was a disgrace who he had let down his mask only after Edward IV’s death”...
 
Part 3 - Late 1383
In Rome Pope Sixtus IV was not happy at all to receive the letter of the Emperor (who, in truth was more an order to investigate the matter of King Edward’s wedding than a request to doing it) and was seriously tempted to do nothing about it (presents heard him cursing ”that damned bishop Stillington“ but also the Holy Roman Emperor, Richard III and the late Edward IV more than once) he had enough troubles in Italy without any need to placate the Emperor. Only the intervention of the powerful Vice Chancellor of the Holy Roman Church persuaded the Pope who not investigating the matter would be a very bad idea as the Papal States right now had more than enough enemies (that without adding who most of that enemies were rulers angered by the Pope himself but with a remind who a cardinalate to a certain bishop would likely help in Italy). Thus the Pope resigned himself to what needed to be done and quickly prepared an embassy for England with full power to investigate the matter putting the English Cardinal Thomas Bourchier, Archbishop of Canterbury as head of the commission but with the obligation to send all the documents and finding to Rome before the verdict as he reserved the final judgement for himself....
Leaving Rome in July they would arrive late in that year in England, where King Richard was not happy to see them but still had other, bigger, troubles and was already taking some countermeasures to the actions of the Emperor, while bishop Stillington was clearly irate for that unnecessary Papal interference.
Cardinal Bourchier (who was a relative of the royal family and had crowned Richard) while not exactly happy for that Papal investigation would do his part (and burn the letter with instructions of the Vice Chancellor just after reading it, not who that letter contained anything different from that he was already thinking to do of his own on that matter)...
The year 1483 would end amid rumors who something happened to Edward V and Richard of Shrewsbury, with Queen Dowager Elizabeth Woodville and her daughters still in sanctuary, Richard III and Anne Neville celebrating Christmas as King and Queen but worried for the bad turn taken by the health of the Prince of Wales, their only child, and the news who Archduke Maximilian, returned in Burgundy a couple of months earlier and waiting for something still mysterious, and Archduchess Elisabeth now had a son, Archduke Edward, born in Vienna and who apparently mother and son were in very good health (and Richard had received that news so quickly only thanks to a letter of his sister Margaret... and remained at the obscure of the fact who the same messenger who brought him that urgent letter had already delivered some other messages, that ones from Archduke Maximilian, in England)....
Meanwhile Anne de Beaujeu, regent of France was waiting to see what would be happen but pretty intentioned to stay out of that... the death of her father had galvanized all the vassals who disliked taking orders from Paris, the Duke d’Orleans was surely conspiring something, other than supporting so vocally his own brother-in-law to make her impossible sending any help to her aunt Madeleine and cousin Catherine, the rightful Queen of Navarre, for defending her Crown from her uncle and only God knew what the Duke of Brittany was planning and cursed Maximilian had not yet consigned to them his daughter Margaret, her brother Charles’ fiancé, promising to send the girl in the next spring ...
 
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