When Edward IV died in 1483, the Yorkist succession was called into question by doubts about the legitimacy of his sons (the `Princes in the Tower'). The crown therefore passed to Edward IV's undoubtedly legitimate younger brother, Richard, Duke of Gloucester. But Richard, too, found himself entangled in the web of uncertainly, since those who believed in the legitimacy of Edward IV's children viewed Richard III's own accession with suspicion.
From the day that Edward IV married Eleanor, or pretended to do so, the House of York, previously so secure in its bloodline, confronted a contentious and uncertain future. John Ashdown-Hill argues that Eleanor Talbot was married to Edward IV, and that therefore Edward's subsequent union with Elizabeth Widville was bigamous, making her children illegitimate.
In his quest to reveal the truth about Eleanor, he also uncovers fascinating new evidence that sheds fresh light on one of the greatest historical mysteries of all time - the identity of the `bones in the urn' in Westminster Abbey, believed for centuries to be the remains of the `Princes in the Tower'.