The reign of King Edward IV occupies a pivotal place in late medieval English history, marking the transition from a medieval to a renaissance monarchy. The personality of the young monarch was undoubtedly a factor in this transition, yet there has been much controversy over the King's character. Was Edward a vain and self-indulgent playboy, more interested in his own pleasures than the well-being of his kingdom, or was his life cut tragically short, thus preventing him from fully establishing the 'new monarchy' now more commonly associated with his son-in-law, Henry VII?
A central personality in both historical study and literary fame, Edward IV is as fascinating a character now as he was for William Shakespeare over four centuries ago. Drawing together both recent research and original sources, Hannes Kleineke reassesses the debate in this concise and accessible biography. This volume is an invaluable read for all those interested in fifteenth century history.
1. Introduction 2. The Making of a King 3. The Establishment of Edward’s rule, 1461-65 4. Foreign policy, the King’s marriage, and the break with Warwick, 1461-68 5. Crisis, Exile and Return, 1468-71 6. Re-establishing the Regime, 1471-75 7. The Final Years, 1475-83 8. Edwardian government 9. Edward – Man and Monarchy 10. The End of the Reign 11. Conclusion 12. Chronology 13. Further reading