Origins of The Conflict

The origins of the Wars of the Roses stem from King Henry VI’s inability to fulfill two of the essential requirements for a successful medieval king.  He failed to settle disputes between the most powerful landowners in England and he lost large amounts of land in France, despite his nominal title as king of France. 

After more than ten years of waiting for Henry to grow up and get a grip on national leadership as his father, Henry V, had done, the richest landowners decided to take matters into their own hands. The problem was: whose hands? Hence the struggle for dominance, firstly through Parliament, then through force of arms that we now call the Wars of the Roses.

Look for more detail on the two Houses of Lancaster and York

This video presented by Dan Jones offers one interpretation of the origins of the conflict in more detail.

Plucking the Red and White Roses by Henry Payne. Birmingham City Art Gallery
Plucking the Red and White Roses by Henry Payne. Birmingham City Art Gallery