Red Rose of Lancaster
Red Rose of Lancaster Emblem
The Red Rose of Lancaster emblem was used a badge, a distinctive device which was displayed as a mark of recognition by an individual or family and worn as a symbol of loyalty and allegiance. The emblem became part of the British heraldic tradition of the Middle Ages and was worn by the servants and retainers who were loyal to the powerful and noble faction called the House of Lancaster. The nobles who part of and owed allegiance to the House of Lancaster fought in the devastating English civil war against the House of York. The civil war was called the Wars of the Roses.
The White Rose of York
Wars of the Roses
Red Rose of Lancaster Supporters
The Red Rose was the symbol of Lancastrian supporters who opposed the rival House of York, whose symbol was the White Rose of York. Both houses were branches of the Plantagenet royal house, tracing their descent from King Edward III (1312 – 1377). The House was named Lancaster, because its main members were all descended from a son of Edward III called John of Gaunt who was the 1st Duke of Lancaster. The Lancastrian supporters adopted the Red Rose as their emblem and badge.
Henry Bolingbroke and the Red Rose of Lancaster
The rivalry between the factions identified by the White Rose of York and the Red Rose of Lancaster started in 1399 when King Richard II (1377-1399) was overthrown by his cousin, Henry Bolingbroke, the Duke of Lancaster.
The Red Rose of Lancaster - The Lancastrian Kings
The following Kings belonged to the House of Lancaster, identified by their emblem the Red Rose of Lancaster:
- King Henry IV 1399-1413 (Henry Bolingbroke, grandson of King Edward III and son of John of Gaunt the first Duke of Lancaster)
- King Henry V 1413-1422 (son of Henry IV)
- King Henry VI 1422-1461 (son of Henry V, deposed)
The end of the faction identified by the Red Rose of Lancaster?
Henry Tudor defeated the Yorkist leader King Richard III in the Battle of Bosworth Field and claimed the throne of England to become King Henry VII and the Dynasty of the Tudors was born. The Lancastrian King Henry VII cemented his claim by marrying Elizabeth of York who was the Yorkist daughter of King Edward IV. The Houses of York and Lancaster therefore merged leading to the creation of the emblem called the Tudor Rose. But to this day in England there is still rivalry between the two counties of Yorkshire and Lancashire, so the Red Rose of Lancaster did not completely die.
Red Rose of Lancaster
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