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Elizabeth Woodville

Played by Rebecca Ferguson

Fact title Fact data
York (Was Lancaster)

Elizabeth was married to Sir John Grey, who died at the Second Battle of St Albans in 1461 fighting for the Lancastrian king, Henry VI. Elizabeth’s father, Baron Rivers, also supports the House of Lancaster. Her mother Jacquetta is a relation to both Henry VI and his wife Margaret of Anjou.

One morning Elizabeth begs the new York king, Edward IV, for mercy and to have her late husband’s land returned to her and her two sons. Edward – who has a reputation as a bit of a playboy – falls for her instantly.

Edward wants Elizabeth to be his mistress, but she refuses. She even puts a knife to her own neck to ward off his advances. Edward goes to battle and Elizabeth misses him terribly. When he returns he asks her to marry her and she agrees.

They have a secret wedding, and Edward announces their marriage to a shocked court and a furious Warwick.

When Warwick convinces George to fight for his brother's crown, the country is at war again. Elizabeth's father and brothers fight for the King and are executed by Warwick.

Elizabeth and her mother are heartbroken and vengeful. Jacquetta, who dabbles in witchcraft, helps Elizabeth curse Warwick and George.

Warwick is killed in battle when he tries to dethrone Edward again - this time with the support of the Lancastrian queen - he is killed in battle and Elizabeth's curse is almost fulfilled.

Peace is restored to England once more but George becomes frustrated and tries to cause trouble yet again - accusing Elizabeth of cursing him and murdering his wife Isabel. He is tried for treason and found guilty.

Elizabeth regrets her decision to curse George - even though he executed her father - and merely wishes for peace. However Edward must not appear weak and George chooses to be executed by being drowned by Malmsey Wine - Elizabeth's favourite.

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