Historial Mysteries – The Princes in the Tower

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27 April 2023

By Daisy

There is an incredible lack of knowledge of the incident of the Princes in the Tower. Motives, outcomes and even the way of death are all unknown. As the suspected murder happened in the 1480s, the evidence of the crime has been long lost or even non-existent.

Setting the scene

The father of Edward and Richard had died, unfortunately. Edward, the older son at the young age of twelve, is next in line to the throne. His uncle, Richard III, is set to become lord protector of his young nephew. Tomorrow is the coronation of Edward and him and his brother spend the night in the tower under the advice of their uncle. This, however, is not unusual as most kings spend the night in the tower previous to their coronation.

The next day, the two princes are missing and nobody is suspected to know anything. But, two main suspects arise, Richard III, the uncle of the two princes and Henry VII, the owner of the opposing house in competition for the throne.


Henry VII – It is argued that Henry’s motives were to gain the crown at the death of the princes and turn the blame on Richard. This would make their house superior and thus give them the throne. However, it would have been clear that the princes had no heir so the crown would be passed onto Richard who was undoubtedly a more powerful rival with more power in battle.

Richard III – Richard is the more favoured suspect in the murders as his feelings are taken into account. He would be jealous of both the princes and his brother as they would gain the throne before him. He would have easier access to the princes and a larger motive to kill them. However, it may have been clear that the public would turn against his rule after the princes disappeared.

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In 1674, a staggering 191 years after the disappearance of the princes, two bodies were discovered under one of the staircases in the castle. It was highly suspected to be Edward and his younger brother Richard as the ages vaguely matched. Their skulls showed signs of suffocation. People believed that the two boys were smothered by their pillows in their sleep. But, these bodies were buried under the rule of Charles II in the Abbey. These bodies are unable to be moved for further investigation from their resting, under the rule of the Church.


Despite this analysis, none of the information points either way. No suspects, evidence or victim is here today to show any explanation of the mystery. Even with the technology of today, the case of the Princes in the Tower remains unsolved. The bodies show how they were murdered but give no indication as to who did it. Both suspects had equally strong motives and the power to commit such a crime. But, as no person has been found directly responsible, it is up to you to come to your own verdict.


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