Coventry Cross (monument) - History - Tudor Cross - Henry VI

Henry VI

See also: Henry VI of England

Henry VI was a figure of particular importance in the Coventry area. A Lancastrian king, he was put to death in the Tower. A cult of veneration then grew to 'Henry the Martyr', and despite early attempts to ban it (in 1479 the Archbishop of York banned veneration of his image), it continued to grow, encouraged by Henry VII. In 1494 Pope Alexander VI set up a commission of enquiry to look into miracles attributed to him and by 1499 his cult was even bigger than that of Thomas Becket. It was particularly strong in Coventry which supported the House of Lancaster during the Wars of the Roses, and which in 1456 was home to Queen Margaret, wife of Henry VI, who moved the court there as London grew increasingly Yorkist in sympathy. The veneration of Henry VI only came to an end with the Dissolution of the Monasteries.

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