July 10, 1460


Immediately after Blore Heath the Yorkists were dispersed near Ludlow without a battle, owing to the treachery of a large part of their army. York himself retired to Ireland, Salisbury and Warwick to Calais. The Queen summoned a parliament and Henry gave his assent to a bill of attainder against all the principal Yorkist leaders. At the end of June the Calais exiles made a landing in Kent, seized Sandwich and gathering support entered London on 2 July. Here they were joined by almost all the Yorkist peers and their retainers.

An army allegedly of 30,000 was assembled, and leaving a part of it to blockade meet the King. The court had been in Coventy, but on learning of the Yorkist advance the King moved to Northampton, and here on 10 July, entrenched in a meadow just south of the town, Warwick found the Lancastrian army under the Duke of Buckingham.

The Duke had fewer men than Warwick, but his position was a strong one and his earthworks were lined with artillery. The first attack, on a three section front, was repulsed; it seemed that the position was too formidable a one for any frontal assault to succeed. Indeed, had it not been for the treachery of Lord Grey of Ruthen, holding the left of the Lancastrian line, Warwick might never have had the victory. But when Grey let in the Earl of March (York’s son and later Edward IV), he quickly rolled up the Lancastrian line, allowing Warwick’s attack in the centre to succeed.

The casualties were not high, but as at St. Albans many of the Lancastrian leaders, including Buckingham, Shrewbury and Egremont, were killed.  The King was captured and once more led back to London.


                                           YORKISTS                                                         LANCASTRIANS

John Lord Clinton

Sir John Beaumont, Viscount Beaumont, killed in battle

Henry Essex, Viscount Bourchier

Jean de la Foix, went over to Yorkists

William Fiennes, Lord Say

Edmund Lord Grey of Ruthin, betrayed Lancastrian troops at battle

Henry Mountford

Henry VI, King of England, captured

Sir John Mowbray, Duke of Norfolk

Lord Hungerford, taken prisoner

Edward Neville, Lord Bergavenny

Earl of Kendal, went over to Yorkists

Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick

John Lord Lovel, taken prisoner

William Neville, Lord Fauconberg

Sir William Lucy, killed in battle

Edward Plantagenet, Earl of March

Thomas Percy, Lord Egremont, killed in battle

John Lord Scrope of Bolton

Humphrey Stafford, Duke of Buckingham, killed in battle

Sir John Stafford

Sir John Talbot, Earl of Shrewsbury, killed in battle

John Tuchet, Lord Audley

Lord de la Warre, went over to Yorkists

For additional reading on the Battle of Northampton

English Heritage, Battlefield Report: Northampton 1460, 1995.

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