The delusions of the Cairo-dwellers*

The fact that various foreign courts recognised Perkin Warbeck as Duke of York merely shows that he was a useful diplomatic tool against Henry VII. Even though he was personally known to Margaret, Duchess of Burgundy, it is obvious that he was animposter. She was clearly telling lies for political purposes.

On the other hand, the fact that the Chancellor of France announced that the Princes had been murdered is proof positive that they were, and that Richard III did it. The Chancellor couldn’t possibly have been telling lies for political purposes.

Elizabeth Woodville clearly retired to Bermondsey because she was tired of court life and wanted to pursue religion. There is nothing odd about her choosing to live in a male monastery rather than a nunnery where she could have been part of the community. The fact her son Dorset was clapped in the Tower at about the same time is just coincidental. And of course, she wanted her lands to go to her daughter, Elizabeth of York. Henry’s Council making the decision to give the lands to Elizabeth of York was just a rubber-stamp.

Richard III may have been granted the throne by Parliament, but he was a regicide and a usurper. On the other hand, Henry VII was a rightful king, confirmed by Parliament. His killing of Richard III does not make him a regicide, nor does his taking the throne make him a usurper. Even though he had no sort of hereditary claim to the throne – it doesn’t matter.

Edward IV made a secret marriage to Elizabeth Woodville. How romantic! But he would never have dreamed of making a previous secret marriage. It’s absolutely impossible. OK, there’s an extant Act of Parliament that said he did. But obviously all the evidence was forged, and the Parliament was scared of Richard III.

Thomas More said the Princes were buried exactly where the famous bones were found. He also said that priest dug them up and moved them somewhere else, but we’ve forgotten that bit. Also it would be the obvious thing for Richard to demolish a stone staircase and dig down ten feet to get rid of them. Dumping them in the Thames would have been too simple. The bones couldn’t possibly be anyone else’s as no one else ever died on the site of the Tower, ever.

Owain Tudor was definitely secretly married to Katherine of Valois, even though there is no evidence of the marriage. On the other hand, Edward IV was definitely not secretly married to Eleanor Talbot, even though there is an Act of Parliament that says he was.

Eleanor Talbot had lands that were not dower, not inherited and not bought. However they were not very valuable. They were probably a gift from the Magic Bunny, as they couldn’t possibly have been given her by Edward IV.

If Edward IV or Henry VII executed anyone, it was necessary for the safety of the throne. But when Richard III executed anyone, it was murder. (Because Edward IV and Henry VII gave everyone a fair trial before an unprejudiced jury – they invented fair play.)

Richard III had to murder Edward V and his bro., because they were a potential threat to his throne. Yes, we know he had them declared illegitimate, but so what? On the other hand his nephew Warwick, who was legitimate, and the son of an elder brother, was no threat to Richard at all, and so he left him alive. Of course when Henry VII became king, Warwick suddenly became a threat to Henry because of his incredibly strong claim to the throne which was not at all barred by his father’s attainder. So eventually, Henry was forced to kill him. But he gave him a fair trial first, even though Warwick hadn’t done anything, so it makes it OK.

Richard III was planning to marry Elizabeth of York. It was such an obvious thing to do, as it would have strengthened his claim ever so much had he married his illegitimate niece. We don’t believe the evidence that he was planning to marry Joanna of Portugal as the sources for it are foreign. They were obviously making it up. Croyland said he was planning to marry Elizabeth and Croyland was a well-informed royal clerk. He just didn’t get to hear about negotiations with foreign powers – OK? Or maybe Richard changed his mind, you know, while Anne was dying. That would be just like him. Anyway it’s in More and Shakespeare too, so that makes it fact.

* and we do mean denialists

By super blue

Grandson of a Town player.


  1. Absolutely wonderful, Stephen. A definite summary. True class. I am glad to dwell near de Severn, which river was definitely on de right side in 1483.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Not a reply exactly, more a correction. The above post should read ‘definitive’ not ‘definite’. Can’t work out how to edit the darned thing. Sorry.


  3. If the title of this article is confusing, I believe Cairo-dwellers are those who live virtually in the Nile. In de Nile. In denial.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Perkin Warbeck was certainly “personally known to Margaret, Duchess of Burgundy”. But did Margaret of York, the duchess, personally know the young Richard, Duke of York? Did they ever meet? Margaret began her journey to her Burgundian marriage on 28 June 1468, when her ship left Margate for the Flemish port of Sluys (Sluis). Young Richard of Shrewsbury was not born until five years later, on 17 August 1473.


    1. There appears to be one possible occasion when she may have met young Richard: in the summer of 1480 she travelled to England to reestablish the Anglo-Burgundian alliance


      1. Margaret of York also had people in her court (including survivors after Bosworth, such as Francis Lovell) who had seen the young Richard, Duke of York.

        Additionally, Henry had spies poking around Flanders for years. You might ask what they were looking for?

        Henry also had Warbeck’s face obliterated beyond recognition before executing him. You might ask why that was necessary, unless it was to obliterate his resemblance to his father Edward IV.

        Henry had at least three people who could have said point blank, “That man is not Richard, Duke of York”: Elizabeth of York, Elizabeth Wydeville, Dorset. It would have been simplicity itself for them to agree with the king and proclaim,”This is an imposter.” Yet history says Henry did not allow them to see Warbeck. What was the danger in allowing them to see an imposter…unless he wasn’t an imposter?

        You might also ask why was there never any public accusation or statement from Elizabeth of York or her mother or Dorset that Richard of York and his brother Edward V had died at Richard’s hands. Could the answer be that Richard did not kill them?

        Could Margaret of York actually have been telling the truth: Perkin was in fact her nephew?

        Liked by 3 people

  5. But if Margaret of Burgundy truly accepted Warbeck as Richard, Duke of York, and as rightful claimant to the Crown of England, doesn’t that mean she rejected his illegitimacy as set out in Richard III’s Titulus Regius?


    1. Margaret’s accepting Warbeck as rightful claiment to the English crown does not mean that she rejected Richard of York’s illegitimacy.

      It does mean that she rejected Henry Tudor’s claim to the throne and favored putting the son of Edward IV — even one declared illegitimate by Parliament — on the throne in Henry’s place.

      You must also remember that, ignoring customary Parliamentary procedure, Henry ordered Parliament to repeal Titulus Regius without its being read in Parliament. He also refused to allow Stillington to testify in Parliament regarding it. The act was to be struck out of memory and all copies were to be destroyed, as if it had never existed. To keep a copy was to risk death at the king’s pleasure.

      If the children of Edward IV truly were bastards, and Edward V’s Royal Council, Parliament, and Richard had all lied to hand Richard the throne…then why did Titulus Regius frighten Henry so badly?

      Liked by 2 people

      1. The last paragraph should read…

        If the children of Edward IV truly *were not* bastards, and Edward V’s Royal Council, Parliament, and Richard had all lied to hand Richard the throne…then why did Titulus Regius frighten Henry so badly?


      2. For Henry, Richard III’s Titulus Regius must have seemed a great slur on the public reputation of his wife Elizabeth. And, thinking on it, the offence felt by Elizabeth Woodville must have been even greater. Perhaps the attempted obliteration of the Titulus Regius of Richard III was part of the bargain when the marriage between Henry and Elizabeth was negotiated.

        Does Margaret’s willingness to put a son of Edward IV, even though he was declared illegitimate by Richard III’s parliament, imply criticism of Richard III’s actions in 1483, if she was prepared to restore the “status quo ante”?


  6. Alternatively, it might suggest that the (irregularly carried out) repeal of Titulus Regius had legitimised him or that she preferred an illegitimate Yorkist to one with neither Yorkist nor Lancastrian descent.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. If so in the second case, if she was willing to accept Richard (Warbeck) in the 1490s, doesn’t that leave open the possibility that Margaret would have accepted the accession of Edward V in 1483, despite claims that his parents marriage was bigamous?


      1. Is there evidence of her preference either way? She had the good fortune, for us as well, to live outside England for her last twenty years so that the “Tudor” cover up could not reach her opinions and records – just as Barrie Williams discovered Richard’s remarriage records in a similarly free Portugal.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Margaret of York was as shackled to the absolute power of medieval church doctrine and its canon laws as was every other Christian in the 15th-century. If the church said someone was illegitimate, they were illegitimate. Temporal law then stepped in to say they could not inherit. That being said….

        *IF* Edward V’s Royal Council (members of whom were ecclesiastics and religious canon experts) had rejected Stillington’s testimony and the testimony of his witnesses (both of which we know had to exist in the council records of the time, and both of which have been lost to history)….

        *IF* Edward V’s Royal Council had declared Edward IV and Elizabeth Woodville’s marriage to be legal under canon law….

        *IF* the Council had decided to go forward with Edward V’s coronation — which preparations were well underway….

        Then yes, Margaret (as well as the three estates, Richard of Gloucester, the merchants of London, and all the citizenry) would have accepted the accession of Edward V in 1483.

        But that is not the outcome that was afforded by the evidence presented to the Royal Council, is it?

        Edward IV *was* proven before that Council to be a bigamist,and medieval ecclesiastical law dictated that the children of his union with Elizabeth Wydeville *were* illegitimate.

        It must be noted that at no time did Elizabeth Wydeville mount a defense of her marriage, nor protest that her children were legitimate. Elizabeth was silent before and after Bosworth, and her silence is assent.

        You will also note that we have no protest from Margaret that her brother was *not* a bigamist. We have only her insistence that Perkin Warbeck was her nephew Richard, Duke of York, the son of Edward IV, and the rightful Yorkist claimant to the throne of England.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. (Reply to: Merlyn MacLeod on 01/10/2014 at 4:57 pm)

        Who were the members of Edward V’s royal council?

        If a royal council included a significant number of churchmen, was it considered competent by the Papacy to rule on matters of Canon Law. Or to put it another way, could the royal council act as a canon law court? Could it do so despite it including many laymen? Did it have sanction from the Papacy?

        Elizabeth Wydeville was hardly free to testify. She went into sanctuary at Westminster Abbey in June 1483 and remained there until 1 March 1484, after Richard III’s Parliament had been dissolved, on 20 February 1484. Richard had accused her of plotting his murder and had put to death Lord Hastings. He alleged that Hastings was part of the murder plot with Elizabeth. The Titulus Regius enacted by Richard’s parliament accused both Elizabeth and her mother, Jacquetta of Luxenbourg, of using sorcery to win her marriage to Edward IV.

        And after Bosworth Field, when Henry VII on the throne with her daughter crowned as queen, and with Richard III’s Titulus Regius struck from the record – as if it had never been – Elizabeth no longer had reason to defend her marriage to Edward IV or “protest that her children were legitimate”.

        From Margaret of Burgundy’s point of view, if she really believed Warbeck was her nephew Richard, Duke of York, and if she truly believed he was the rightful, legitimate Yorkist claimant to the throne of England, this must imply that she did not accept his illegitimacy due to bigamy by his father, Edward IV, and that she rejected the accusations made on behalf of Richard III.


      4. Elizabeth Woodville was as free as she wanted to be at that stage – then she released her youngest remaining son, released her daughters and herself before meeting Richard amicably, as you would if you thought he had killed your ounger sons?
        No, she knew they were either alive or dead by another hand and she knew that no Yorkist had ever harmed a woman or a cleric – Lionel Woodville was also as free as he wanted to be.

        Liked by 2 people

      5. (Reply to: super blue on 01/10/2014 at 11:10 am)

        I hope new records for the period are found, especially from the Low Countries. It would very interesting to find a Burgundian Mancini. We have all seen how new archaeological evidence from Bosworth battlefield, let alone the Grey Friars in Leicester, have created new interest in the reign of Richard III.


      6. I doubt Margaret would have been happy for an inexperienced child, who was seen to be illegitimate sit on the throne instead of a grown up, fully qualified administrator who had proved his worth in several ways prior to 1483.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. The situations in 1483 and the 1490s are totally different. In 1483 the boys were known to be illegitimate and Richard III was known to be the true heir of Edward IV. The boys no longer appeared in public, not because they had been killed, but because they had been sent to Burgundy for safety. I firmly believe this. By the 1490s Henry VII had long since seen fit to legitimise the boys, whose claims to the throne were infinitely greater than his own, thanks to his need to legitimise his queen, and thus her brothers too.

    Margaret would most certainly have preferred one of them to anything Tudor. And if the then illegitimate boys had indeed been sent to her for safety in 1483, she would certainly know them both. Well. Trying to muddy the water with finnicky points about who knew what, where and when, is really immaterial. It all depends upon the widely held belief that Richard III sent his nephews to his sister in Burgundy, a belief that Henry VII must have shared. He certainly feared the boys were still alive. If he didn’t, he wouldn’t have worried so much about pretenders. But he himself had legitimised those two boys.

    Nothing can yet be proved about what happened, except to know that Margaret of Burgundy was Yorkist to the nth degree. She was going to promote whomever she thought would unseat Henry, who had many a sleepless night on account of the survival of the House of York. How he must have hated having to make Elizabeth of York legitimate in order to marry her. An own goal in many respects.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Did Margaret of Burgundy know Richard, Duke of York, well enough to properly identify Perkin Warbeck and young Richard as the same person? The questions on “who knew what, where and when” are meant to clarify matters, not “muddy the water”.

      Margaret’s judgement would be easily accepted if it was clear that she knew Richard well before 1483. If she did not, there are other possibilities: deception by Warbeck, self-deception by Margaret, or a cynical ploy by the Burgundian court for political reasons. (The French support for Henry Tudor’s campaign in 1485 could have been a factor.)

      There would have been no marriage between Henry and Elizabeth of York if it was known that young Richard alive and safe in the care of Margaret of Burgundy. The Yorkists who supported Henry Tudor in 1485 would have flocked to Burgundy to join young Richard. Elizabeth Woodville would not have negotiated the marriage of her daughter, Richard’s sister, to Henry Tudor to share the throne with him, if she had known that Richard was alive to succeed his brother Edward V.


      1. If Titulus Regius was such a source of offence to Elizabeth of York and Elizabeth Woodville, why didn’t they speak up? They had ample opportunity, and Henry would have been cock-a-hoop. Instead, silence. Not even a nasty word against Richard, which again, Henry would have loved. And Margaret of Burgundy could well have met and remembered the boys. How many times do you think she would need before the penny dropped that yes, they were her nephews? I’m not sure what you’re seeking to prove, except that you know how to spin things out. We’re stony ground for you, as you must have realised by now.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Reply to: viscountessw on 02/10/2014 at 5:53 pm

        The fact that Elizabeth Woodville negotiated with Margaret Beaufort for the marriage of Elizabeth of York to Henry Tudor, instead of accepting Richard III’s offer to find acceptable husbands for young Elizabeth and her sisters, would seem to speak loudly enough.

        How many other marriage candidates were there who were from the peerage, or the gentry, and in good favour with Richard III? Why choose a fugitive rebel with a paper title and no estate, instead of an honoured lord or gentleman, living peaceably on their own lands?


  8. “… Elizabeth Woodville negotiated with Margaret Beaufort for the marriage of Elizabeth of York to Henry Tudor …”

    There is no longer any credible evidence for this Cairo tenet, merely the paid liars of “Tudor” rewriting history. Elizabeth Woodville’s actions in coming out of sanctuary during 1484 with her daughters and being confined to religious premises point to her rapprochement with Richard, which displeased his successor. Similarly, her eldest daughter expressed her pleasure at the plans to marry her to the cousin and successor of the King of Portugal, plans that were covered up in the aftermath but exposed by the Norfolk letter. Quite a catch for a bastard.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Wait, where in the ‘Norfolk letter’ does Elizabeth in effect say, “Oh, I can’t wait till I can marry Manuel. Please let the queen die so the mourning period will be over soon and we can tie the knot.” If Richard wanted her to marry Manuel, and she wanted this too, why ask a third person to run interference?
      In fact, she never mentioned Manuel at all. Either by carelessness or design, the letter is ambiguous.


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