Historic Doubts on the Life and Reign of King Richard the Third eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 134 pages of information about Historic Doubts on the Life and Reign of King Richard the Third.

As little is it requisite to argue on the grants made by Richard the Third to his supposed accomplices in that murder, because the argument will serve either way.  It was very natural that they, who had tasted most of Richard’s bounty, should be suspected as the instruments of his crimes.  But till it can be proved that those crimes were committed, it is in vain to bring evidence to show who assisted him in perpetrating them.  For my own part, I know not what to think of the death of Edward the Fifth:  I can neither entirely acquit Richard of it, nor condemn him; because there are no proofs on either side; and though a court of justice would, from that defect of evidence, absolve him; opinion may fluctuate backward and forwards, and at last remain in suspense.

For the younger brother, the balance seems to incline greatly on the side of Perkin Warbeck, as the true duke of York; and if one was saved, one knows not how nor why to believe that Richard destroyed only the elder.

We must leave this whole story dark, though not near so dark as we found it:  and it is perhaps as wise to be uncertain on one portion of our history, as to believe so much as is believed, in all histories, though very probably as falsely delivered to us, as the period which we have here been examining.



The following notice, obligingly communicated to me by Mr. Stanley, came too late to be inserted in the body of the work, and yet ought not to be omitted.

After the death of Perkin Warbeck, his widow, the lady Catherine Gordon, daughter of the earl of Huntly, from her exquisite beauty, and upon account of her husband called The Rose of Scotland, was married to Sir Matthew Cradock, and is buried with him in Herbert’s isle in Swansea church in Wales, where their tomb is still to be seen, with this inscription in ancient characters: 

“Here lies Sir Mathie Cradock knight, sume time deputie unto the right honorable Charles Erle of Worcets in the countie of Glamargon.  L. Attor.  G. R Chauncelor of the same, steward of Gower and Hilrei, and mi ladie, Katerin his wife.”

They had a daughter Mary, who was married to Sir Edvard Herbert, son of the first earl of Pembroke, and from that match are descended the earls of Pembroke and countess of Powis, Hans Stanley, Esq, George Rice, Esq. &c.

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