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Richard, Duke of York

This article is about Richard, Duke of York, father of of King Edward IV. For the article about Edward IV's son who was imprisoned in the Tower of London see: Richard, Duke of York (Prince in the Tower).

Richard, Duke of York (1411-1460) was the son of Richard, Earl of Cambridge, a noble who had been executed for treason by King Henry V of England in 1415, and of Anne Mortimer, who, like her husband, was a direct descendant of King Edward III. Richard thus had an excellent claim on the throne of England, which he began to press in 1448 by assuming the long-disused surname of Plantagenet. In doing so, he made a direct challenge to the weak King Henry VI. In about 1424, he married Cecily Neville, a descendant of John of Gaunt. Having had the attainder against his father reversed in 1426, he was himself attainted on November 20, 1459. This made him all the more determined to achieve the throne for the House of York, and he died fighting the Lancastrians at the Battle of Wakefield on December 30, 1460. He was buried at Pontefract. Richard's eldest son finally succeeded in putting his dynasty on the throne in 1461 as King Edward IV of England. Edward V of England was Richard's grandson, and Richard III of England was Richard's son.