Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Jasper the Kingmaker

Comprehensive and detailed biography of Jasper Tudor, the uncle of Henry VII and brother in law to Margaret Beaufort. Jasper Tudor was the unsung hero of Henry's battle to take the throne. "The importance of Jasper's tutelage of his nephew has only recently been fully appreciated by historians. While Henry's mother, Margaret Beaufort, was an indispensable agent of his interests in England, Jasper was his political mentor in the years spent in exile."
Breverton discusses both Edmund and Jasper's Welsh background, their descent from Welsh royalty, to the upbringing in the court of their half brother, Henry VI. He recounts their elevation to the premier earls of the land, second only to the royal dukes. Clearly Henry VI wanted to protect himself by ennobling and enriching his closest and trusted family members. He furthered Edmund's wealth, by pairing him with the richest and most influential heiress in England at the time. We all know that Edmund did not live to see the son born of that union, and Jasper was thrust into the role of protector and guardian of both Henry and his mother. Jasper took custody of Henry when they made their escape to France, shaping him into the man that would eventually become king. "Henry and Jasper both believed Henry was the chosen one, destined for glory. Henry was possibly the first king to leave a full Treasury, and his three children were linked to the other royal dynasties of Europe." Not a bad legacy.
Jasper Tudor was a kingmaker. Born in secrecy, hidden away because of the stigma of his parent's union, Jasper Tudor accepted his destiny, putting his whole life on hold to take on the dangerous cause of his nephew. Breverton points out that the success of this mission, reunited England with Wales, placing the descendants of the native people on the rightful throne where they belong.

Happy Reading!
Carole P. Roman

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