NFYORK-16 Yorkist Archers – The Retinue of John Howard, 1st Duke of Norfolk
The Battle of Bosworth (or Bosworth Field) was the last significant battle of the Wars of the Roses, the civil war between the Houses of Lancaster and York that raged across England in the latter half of the 15th century. Fought on 22 August 1485, the battle was won by the Lancastrians. Their leader Henry Tudor, Earl of Richmond, by his victory became the first English monarch of the Tudor dynasty. His opponent, Richard III, the last king of the House of York, was killed in the battle. Historians consider Bosworth Field to mark the end of the Plantagenet dynasty, making it a defining moment of English and Welsh history.
Richard’s most loyal subject was John Howard, 1st Duke of Norfolk. The duke had served Richard’s brother for many years and was one of Edward IV’s closer confidantes. He was a military veteran, having fought in the Battle of Towton in 1461 and served as Hastings’ deputy at Calais in 1471.
John Howard was slain at the Battle of Bosworth Field on 22 August 1485 along with his friend and patron King Richard. Howard was the commander of the vanguard, and his son, the Earl of Surrey, his lieutenant. Howard was killed when a Lancastrian arrow struck him in the face after the face guard had been torn off his helmet during an earlier altercation with the Earl of Oxford.