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Margaret Beaufort: Mother of the Tudor Dynasty

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The first Tudor queen, Elizabeth of York, was seen as the pinnacle of excellence and the ideal queen for those who would try to follow in her footsteps. All known portraits, however, are in essentially the same format, depicting her in her later years, wearing a long, peaked, white headdress and in a pose of religious contemplation. The gilded bronze sculpture on the tomb depicts Margaret with her head resting on pillows and her hands raised in prayer, wearing garments characteristic of widowhood; the face was probably sculpted from a death mask.

As his only surviving child, Margaret was heiress to his considerable fortune and inheritor of his contested claim to the throne. She wanted a man who was clever enough to see that her son might have a chance at the throne one day, and duplicitous enough to serve two sides at once. As Henry faces the numerous challenges of being a father and a king, his mother is right by his side to guide and protect him and his family. Since I read the first book, “The Beaufort Bride”, I knew that I wanted to continue Margaret’s adventure. Lady Margaret was portrayed by Marigold Sharman in eight of the thirteen episodes of the BBC's Shadow of the Tower (1972) with James Maxwell as her son Henry VII.This bride would give her a great-grandson, a Spanish–Tudor king for England, and a son after him, and after him: and so lay down a dynasty of Tudors that would be never-ending. In his chronicle, Polydore Vergil assessed the partnership between the Tudor king and his mother, noting that Henry gave her a share of most of his public and private resources, contrary to any assertion that Margaret desired greater power.

This novel was originally published in 1974 as Bride of the Thirteenth Summer, under the name Iris Davies.Following Edward IV's death in April 1483 and the seizure of the throne in June by Richard III from Edward V, Margaret was soon back at court serving the new queen, Anne Neville.

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