Anne Beauchamp, 16th Countess of Warwick



Anne Beauchamp, 16th Countess of Warwick was born July 13, 1426 at Caversham Castle in what is now Berkshire. Her father was Richard Beauchamp, 13th Earl of Warwick and her mother was his second wife, Isabel le Despenser. She married Richard Neville after being betrothed to him in 1434 (yes she was eight, he was six). They were then married in April of 1436 in a double ceremony that also included her brother Henry and Cecily Neville With her father dying then her brother Henry and his daughter Lady Anne Warwick Neville inherited the title of Warwick along with other lands through his wife. Her three older half sisters contested this. Her sister Eleanor was married to Edmund Beaufort who was closely related to the Nevilles. Richard Neville was the grandson of Joan Beaufort, Edmund’s aunt. This increased tensions between the two families. It took many years, and a Papal dispensation to eat eggs and meat during Lent to help her bear children., The couple finally had two daughters, Isabel, who married George, the Duke of Clarence(this required another Papal dispensation since Edward IV did not approve of it) and Anne who married Prince Edward first and then Richard, Duke of Gloucester who of course became Richard III. The marriage of Isabel and George caused the small family to flee England for a time during which Isabel had a stillborn son while on the ship, Calais had turned them away.

Richard Neville was often sent out of the country and there is some reason to believe that Anne went with him at least some of those times, so though the marriage was a political one they seemed content even thought Richard fathered at least one illegitimate child during the marriage.

Because of bickering over Anne’s estate Richard gave up most of the Warwick lands, which had, been held in his wife’s name and his Salisbury lands to George as well as the office of The Great Chamberlain of England. Edward inherited those lands and titles after his father was executed for treason in 1478. Anne outlived her husband, daughters and sons in laws and passed away in obscurity she was not even at the Coronation of Richard. An act of Parliament in 1474 had labeled her officially dead leaving her lands split between her sons in laws. She had petitioned Henry to receive some of her lands back with the stipulation that they would return to the Crown upon her death. She died on September 20, 1492.



Mary of Guelders



Mary of Guelders

Mary of Guelders was born 1434 in Grave, Netherlands. She was the daughter Arnold, Duke of Guelders, and Catherine of Cleves. Her aunt and uncle, Philip The Good, Duke of Burgundy and his wife Isabella of Portugal wanted to marry her off to Charles, Count of Maine but her parents could not afford the dowry so she remained at the Burgundian court, with Isabella paying for many of her expenses. So, yes, you can be royal and broke. While there she was a lady in waiting to Catherine of Valois, the daughter of Charles VII King of France and daughter in law to Isabella.

When it was arranged for her to marry James II of Scotland, Philip paid the dowry and Isabella paid for the trousseau. She was sent to Scotland in 1449. She married James II, king of Scots, at Holyrood Abbey in Edinburgh on July 3rd of that year.

James granted her many lands leaving her independently wealthy. After she was present during the Seige of Blackness Castle in 1454, he gave it to her as well. She used her founds to found a hospital outside of Edinburgh for the poor and also donated to the Franciscan friars.

When James II died she took over as regent for their son James III. However, at this time England was going through the War of the Roses and she ended up drawn into it. She took in Margaret of Anjou, the Lancastrian Queen, and Edward of Westminster (son of Henry IV who they bethrothed to her daughter Margaret) to keep them safe from the Yorkists. The Lancasters were family with James’ mother, Joan Beaufort. This friendship created tensions between her Uncle Philip and Edward IV. To try to win her over Edward proposed marriage to her, which she rejected. She agreed to make peace with England in 1462.

She died December 1, 1463 while finishing James II’s dream of a castle at Ravenscraig She was initially buried at Trinity College Church, which she helped to found in honor of her husband and was later moved to Holyrood Abbey in 1848.