Richard Neville, 5th Earl of Salisbury depicted in the Salisbury Roll, c. 1463, with tinctures of Neville arms transposed in error. He displays the arms of Montagu quartering Monthermer in the dexter position of honour.
|Died||31 December 1460|
|Cause of death||Beheaded (lynched)|
|Resting place||Bisham Priory, Berkshire|
|Net worth||₤3,000 per annum|
|Spouse(s)||Alice Montagu, 5th Countess of Salisbury|
Richard Neville, 5th Earl of Salisbury – 31 December 1460) was an English nobleman and magnate based in northern England who became a key supporter of the House of York during the early years of the Wars of the Roses. He was the father of Richard Neville, 16th Earl of Warwick, the "Kingmaker".(c. 1400
He was born in 1400 at Raby Castle in County Durham, the third son (and tenth child) of Ralph de Neville, 1st Earl of Westmorland, but his first son by his second wife, Joan Beaufort, the youngest of the four legitimised children and only daughter of John of Gaunt, 1st Duke of Lancaster (third surviving son of King Edward III), by his mistress, later wife, Katherine Swynford.
The Neville lands were primarily in County Durham and Yorkshire, but both King Richard II and King Henry IV (Joan's cousin and half-brother respectively) found the family useful to counterbalance the strength of the Percys on the Scottish Borders. This led to Ralph's earldom being granted in 1397, and to his appointment as Warden of the West March in 1403. Ralph's marriage to Joan Beaufort, at a time when the distinction between royalty and nobility was becoming more important,[ citation needed ] can be seen as another reward; as a grand-daughter of King Edward III, she was a member of the royal family.
The children of Ralph's first wife, Margaret Stafford, made good marriages to local nobility, and his eldest son had married into royalty in the person of Elizabeth Holland, but his Beaufort children married into even greater families. Three of Richard's sisters married dukes, the youngest Cecily, married Richard, Duke of York.
Richard married Alice Montacute, daughter and heiress of Thomas Montacute, 4th Earl of Salisbury. The date of Richard and Alice's marriage is not known, but it must have been before February 1421, when as a married couple they appeared at the coronation of Queen Catherine of Valois. At the time of the marriage, the Salisbury inheritance was not guaranteed, as not only was Thomas Montacute still alive, but in 1424 he remarried (to Alice Chaucer, granddaughter of the poet Geoffrey Chaucer). This second marriage was without issue and when the Thomas Montacute died in 1428, Richard Neville and Alice were confirmed as the Earl and Countess of Salisbury. From this point on, Richard Neville will be referred to as Salisbury.
Salisbury came into possession of greater estates than, as a younger son under primo geniture, he could reasonably have expected. Strangely, his eldest half-brother John Neville apparently agreed to many of the rights to the Neville inheritance being transferred to his step-mother Joan Beaufort, and her son Salisbury inherited these on her death in 1440. He also gained possession of the lands and grants made jointly to Ralph and Joan. Ralph's heir (his grandson Ralph Neville, 2nd Earl of Westmorland) as the representative of the senior line, disputed the loss of his inheritance, and although he agreed to a settlement in 1443, it was on unequal terms – Salisbury kept the great Neville possessions of Middleham and Sheriff Hutton, as well as the more recent grant of Penrith. Only Raby Castle, the family's most ancient possession, returned to the senior branch. The resultant Neville–Neville feud was later to become absorbed into the destructive Percy-Neville feud. Salisbury's marriage gained him his wife's quarter share of the Holland inheritance. Ironically, his Salisbury title came with comparatively little in terms of wealth, though he did gain a more southerly residence at Bisham Manor in Berkshire.
The defence of the Scottish Border was carried out by two Wardens– that of the East March (based at Berwick-upon-Tweed) and that of the West March at Carlisle. Both offices had been held by the Percy family in the fourteenth century, and their support of King Henry IV seemed to have paid off in 1399, when Henry Percy, 1st Earl of Northumberland was appointed Warden of the West March and his son Henry Percy ("Hotspur") as Warden of the East March. But Hotspur rebelled, and his father was held to be complicit in his treason. After Hotspur was killed at the Battle of Shrewsbury in 1403, Ralph Neville was employed by King Henry V to capture the elder Percy. His reward was to succeed the Percys as Warden of both Marches. Under King Henry V, the Percys were restored to their lands, and eventually in 1417, to the East March. The West March, however, was to become an almost hereditary Neville appointment.
Salisbury became Warden of the West March in 1420. It was one of the most valuable appointments in England, worth £1,500 in peacetime and four times that if war broke out with Scotland. Although, unlike Calais, it did not require a permanent garrison, the incessant raiding and border skirmishes meant that there would always be a ready supply of trained and experienced soldiers at the Warden's command. Salisbury must have been high in Henry V's estimation, as he was also appointed Justice of the Peace in Cumberland, Westmoreland, and Durham. In 1431 he accompanied the young King Henry VI to France for his coronation, and on his return was made Warden of the East March.
In 1436 he resigned both posts, although this may have originally intended as a means of forcing the crown to make good its arrears of payment. When his resignation was accepted, he accompanied his brother-in-law Richard, Duke of York, to France, taking 1,300 men-at-arms and archers with him. He returned the following year, and in November became a member of the King's Council. He did not resume either of the Wardenships, as the Percy-Neville dispute took up most of his time, but when this was resolved in 1443 he resumed the Wardenship of the West March. Although this was at a reduced fee of just under £1,000, the money was secured on specific sources of Crown income, not on the frequently uncollectable tallies. This may reflect his experiences of 1436.
At the end of 1443, from his principal seat at Middleham Castle in Wensleydale, Salisbury could look with some satisfaction at his position. He was a member of the King's Council and Warden of the West March. His brother Robert Neville was the Bishop of Durham, and another of his brothers, William Neville, 1st Earl of Kent, had the custody of Roxburgh Castle. He had seven children, four boys and three girls. In 1436 the two oldest children, Cicely and Richard, made excellent marriages to the son and daughter of Richard de Beauchamp, 13th Earl of Warwick.
It was becoming apparent that the rise of the Nevilles was coming to an end. The king, who during the late 1430s had started to exercise personal rule, was more concerned to promote the fortunes of his closest relatives – and Salisbury was only related by a junior, legitimised and female line. In this context, the local rivalry between the Nevilles and the Percys in the north of England was likely to take on greater importance. A strong and capable ruler would be able to control such feuds, or even profit by them. A weak king could find the disputes spreading from local to regional or national conflict.
The Percys had lands throughout northern England, while the northern lands of the Nevilles were concentrated in north Yorkshire and in County Durham. As Warden of the West March, Salisbury was in a position to exert great power in the north-west, in spite of holding only Kendal and Penrith. The Percys resented the fact that their tenants in Cumberland and Westmorland were being recruited by Salisbury, who even with the reduced grant of 1443 still had great spending power in the region. The senior Neville line (now related by marriage to the Percys) still resented the inequitable settlement of their inheritance dispute.
The fifteenth century could be regarded as the peak of "bastard feudalism" – when every subject needed a "good lord". In return for a commitment by the retained man to provide (usually) military support, the lord would give his retainer a small annual fee, a badge or item of clothing to mark his loyalty (livery) and provide help for him in his disputes with his neighbours (maintenance). Northern England was a long way from the Palace of Westminster, and rapid legal redress for wrongs was impossible.With his economic power as Warden, Salisbury could provide better support for Percy tenants than Northumberland, unpaid in regard to the East March for years, could hope to.
In 1448, during the renewal of the war with Scotland, Northumberland took his forces through Salisbury's West March – a grave breach of etiquette. Northumberland was defeated at the Battle of Sark, and his son Henry Percy, Lord Poynings was captured. The fact that Salisbury lost 2,000 horses trying to respond to this attack, and was then excluded (along with Northumberland) from the subsequent peace negotiations, can only have inflamed relations between the two families. Over time, the ill will might have receded, but Northumberland's second son, Thomas Percy, Lord Egremont, spent the next few years stirring up trouble in Yorkshire – particularly at York, situated between the Percy estates of Spofforth and Healaugh, and Neville's castle at Sheriff Hutton.
On 24 August 1453, Thomas Percy, Lord Egremont, assembled a force of men-at-arms and archers perhaps as large as 1,000 strong, intending to waylay Salisbury and his family at Heworth Moor, outside York, as he made for Sheriff Hutton. Salisbury had been attending the wedding of his son Thomas in Tattershall Castle, Lincolnshire, and although his escort would have been smaller, it would have been better armed than Egremont's York craftsmen and tradesmen. Salisbury and his retinue fought them back, arriving unscathed at Sheriff Hutton, but the episode marked the beginning of what was virtually a private war. The bride, Maud Stanhope, was the widow of Lord Willoughby of Eresby, his son[ citation needed ] would become a Yorkist. Another of the Yorkist party, John Neville, was later Lord Montagu. Maud[ citation needed ] was due to inherit the manors of Wressle and Burwell from her uncle, Lord Cromwell, who had obtained them from the Percys through litigation. Historian John Sadler argues this[ citation needed ] was the first incident in the Yorkist/Lancastrian affinities lawless squabble leading to civil war.
Salisbury changed his allegiance to Richard, Duke of York, who made him Lord Chancellor in 1455. This enabled Salisbury to advance the interests of his retainers against the Percies, for example Thomas de la More petitioned against Lord Egremont, whom de la More claimed had threatened to kill him years earlier.When King Henry VI tried to assert his independence and dismiss York as Protector, Salisbury joined him in fighting at the First Battle of St Albans, claiming that he was acting in self-defence. In 1458 he participated in The Love Day, an attempt at reconciliation held in London. After the Battle of Blore Heath, in which he was notably successful, Salisbury escaped to Calais, having been specifically excluded from a royal pardon. He was slain on 30–31 December 1460, the night after the Battle of Wakefield.
After the defeat of the Yorkists at the Battle of Wakefield, Salisbury himself escaped the battlefield but was captured during the night. Upon discovery, battle worn and now a traitor to the realm, he was taken to the Lancastrian camp. Although due to his great wealth the Lancastrian nobles might have been prepared to allow Salisbury to ransom himself, he was nevertheless dragged out of Pontefract Castle and beheaded by the local population, to whom he had been a harsh overlord.
He was buried first at Pontefract, but his sons transferred his body to the family mausoleum at Bisham Priory in Berkshire where they erected a monument to his memory. The effigy from this was brought to St Mary's Church at Burghfield, near Reading, after the Dissolution of the Monasteries. The effigy of a lady alongside him wears a headdress which is not thought to be of the right date to be his wife, but she may represent one of the earlier Countesses of Salisbury buried at Bisham.
He married Alice Montacute (1407-1462), daughter and heiress of Thomas Montacute, 4th Earl of Salisbury (1388-1428), by whom he had twelve children:
|Ancestors of Richard Neville, 5th Earl of Salisbury|
This article includes a list of references, but its sources remain unclear because it has insufficient inline citations . (May 2019) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
Year 1460 (MCDLX) was a leap year starting on Tuesday of the Julian calendar.
Richard Neville, 16th Earl of Warwick, known as Warwick the Kingmaker, was an English nobleman, administrator, and military commander. The eldest son of Richard Neville, 5th Earl of Salisbury, he became Earl of Warwick through marriage, and was the wealthiest and most powerful English peer of his age, with political connections that went beyond the country's borders. One of the leaders in the Wars of the Roses, originally on the Yorkist side but later switching to the Lancastrian side, he was instrumental in the deposition of two kings, which led to his epithet of "Kingmaker".
John Neville, 1st Marquess of Montagu was a major magnate of fifteenth-century England. He was a younger son of Richard Neville, 5th Earl of Salisbury, and the younger brother of Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick, the 'Kingmaker'.
Ralph Neville, 1st Earl of WestmorlandEarl Marshal, was an English nobleman of the House of Neville.
Henry Percy, 2nd Earl of Northumberland was an English nobleman and military commander in the lead up to the Wars of the Roses. He was the son of Henry "Hotspur" Percy, and the grandson of Henry Percy, 1st Earl of Northumberland. His father and grandfather were killed in different rebellions against Henry IV in 1403 and 1408 respectively, and the young Henry spent his minority in exile in Scotland. Only after the death of Henry IV in 1413 was he reconciled with the Crown, and in 1416 he was created Earl of Northumberland.
Henry Percy, 3rd Earl of Northumberland, was an English magnate.
Henry Percy, 4th Earl of NorthumberlandKG was an English aristocrat during the Wars of the Roses. After losing his title when his father was killed fighting the Yorkists, he later regained his position. He led the rear guard of Richard III's army at the Battle of Bosworth, but failed to commit his troops. He was briefly imprisoned by Henry VII, but later restored to his position. A few years later he was murdered by citizens of York during a revolt against Henry VII's taxation.
The Percy–Neville feud was a series of skirmishes, raids and vandalism between two prominent northern English families, the House of Percy and the House of Neville, and their followers, that helped provoke the Wars of the Roses. The original reason for the long dispute is unknown, and the first outbreaks of violence were in the 1450s, prior to the Wars of the Roses. The antagonists would later meet in battle several times during the feud.
The Lord Warden of the Marches was an office in the governments of Scotland and England. The holders were responsible for the security of the border between the two nations, and often took part in military action. They were also responsible, along with 'Conservators of the truce', for administering the special type of border law known as March law.
John Clifford, 9th Baron Clifford, 9th Lord of Skipton was a Lancastrian military leader during the Wars of the Roses in England. The Clifford family was one of the most prominent families among the northern English nobility of the fifteenth century, and by the marriages of his sisters John Clifford had links to some very important families of the time, including the earls of Devon. He was orphaned at twenty years of age when his father was slain by partisans of the House of York at the first battle of the Wars of the Roses, the Battle of St Albans in 1455. It was probably as a result of his father's death there that Clifford became one of the strongest supporters of Queen Margaret of Anjou, consort of King Henry VI, who ended up as effective leader of the Lancastrian faction.
John Neville, Baron Neville was an English nobleman who fought for the House of Lancaster during the Wars of the Roses. He belonged to a senior but impoverished branch of the Neville family of northern England, which had earlier been disinherited in favor of a younger branch headed by John's half–uncle, Richard, earl of Salisbury. John Neville and his brothers spent several years feuding with Salisbury over the contested inheritance and, when the dynastic wars broke out, John sided with the Lancastrians whilst the junior Nevilles sided with the House of York.
William Herbert, 1st Earl of PembrokeKG, known as "Black William", was a Welsh nobleman, soldier, politician, and courtier. He was the son of William ap Thomas, founder of Raglan Castle, and Gwladys ferch Dafydd Gam, and grandson of Dafydd Gam, an adherent of King Henry V of England.
Events from the 1460s in England.
Katherine Neville, Baroness Hastings, was a noblewoman and a member of the powerful Neville family of northern England. She was one of the six daughters of Richard Neville, 5th Earl of Salisbury, and the sister of military commander Richard Neville, 16th Earl of Warwick, known to history as Warwick the Kingmaker.
The Neville or Nevill family is a noble house of early medieval origin, which was a leading force in English politics in the later Middle Ages. The family became one of the two major powers in northern England and played a central role in the Wars of the Roses along with their rival, the House of Percy.
The Wars of the Roses were a series of English civil wars for control of the throne of England fought between supporters of two rival cadet branches of the royal House of Plantagenet: the House of Lancaster, represented by a red rose, and the House of York, represented by a white rose. Eventually, the wars eliminated the male lines of both families. The conflict lasted through many sporadic episodes between 1455 and 1487, but there was related fighting before and after this period between the parties. The power struggle ignited around social and financial troubles following the Hundred Years' War, unfolding the structural problems of bastard feudalism, combined with the mental infirmity and weak rule of King Henry VI which revived interest in the House of York's claim to the throne by Richard of York. Historians disagree on which of these factors was the main reason for the wars.
The First Battle of St Albans, fought on 22 May 1455 at St Albans, 22 miles (35 km) north of London, traditionally marks the beginning of the Wars of the Roses in England. Richard, Duke of York, and his allies, the Neville earls of Salisbury and Warwick, defeated a royal army commanded by Edmund Beaufort, Duke of Somerset, who was killed. With King Henry VI captured, a subsequent parliament appointed Richard of York Lord Protector.
Sir Thomas Harrington of Hornby was a 15th-century English northern knight. He was originally a loyal servant of the Lancastrian crown, but gave his loyalty to Richard of York in the early years of the Wars of the Roses, and died in battle in his service.
Sir Thomas Neville was the second son of Richard Neville, 5th Earl of Salisbury, a major nobleman and magnate in the north of England during the fifteenth-century Wars of the Roses, and a younger brother to the more famous Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick, the 'Kingmaker'. Thomas worked closely with them both in administering the region for the Crown, and became a significant player in the turbulent regional politics of northern England in the early 1450s, especially in the Neville family's growing local rivalry with the House of Percy. His wedding in August 1453 is said to have marked the beginning of the armed feud between both houses, in which Thomas and his brother John led a series of raids, ambushes and skirmishes across Yorkshire against the Percy family. Historians describe the feud as setting the stage for the Wars of the Roses, the dynastic struggle between the houses of Lancaster and York for the English throne, and Thomas played a large role in the Neville family's alliance with his uncle, Richard, Duke of York.
The Loveday of 1458 was a ritualistic reconciliation that took place at St Paul's Cathedral on 25 March 1458. It was the culmination of weeks of negotiations initiated by King Henry VI in an attempt to resolve rivalries within his nobility. English politics had become increasingly factional during Henry's reign, and this was exacerbated in 1453 when he became mentally incapacitated. This effectively left the government leaderless, and eventually the king's cousin, and at the time heir to the throne, Richard, Duke of York was appointed Protector during the king's illness. Alongside York were his allies from the politically and militarily important Neville family. When the king returned to health a year later, the protectorship ended but the partisanship within government did not.
| Lord Chancellor |
| Lord Chamberlain |
|Peerage of England|
| Earl of Salisbury |
( jure uxoris )