Henry was born into a country that was divided by conflict and civil war.
Margaret Beaufort was just a child herself and Henry's birth did irreparable damage, this could account for the fact that she never gave birth again, however she turned out to be an influential and dominant figure throughout Henry's life. Margaret was also aware of her son's vulnerability and because of this sent him into the care of his uncle, Jasper Tudor. Following the Battle of Tewkesbury in the May of 1471 Jasper and Henry fled to Brittany and then finally into France. Henry spent, in total, fourteen years of his life in exile.
His return to England in 1485 has been much written about, and most of you will know that he was aided at the Battle of Bosworth by Thomas Stanley, his mother's husband and his brother William.
I, of course, am a Ricardian and see Henry as a usurper, whose claim to the throne is a tenuous one to say the least, however, Richard and Henry's stories are real and to understand Henry, Richard and the Wars of the Roses it is always best to read widely with the aim to gain an understanding of both sides of story, therefore I add this paragraph taken from the Henry Tudor Society about Henry.
"He is a king often accused of being parsimonious, miserly, ruthless, severe and avaricious to the extreme, cold to his wife and cruel to friend and foe alike. The study of Henry’s life, from his beginnings through to the exile, and from his early reign to the tragic end, put forward a different man. It is this man, the real Henry, not the mythical Henry, that we aim to bring to the fore. A man who had an astounding tenacity to survive, to cling to his throne and to pass his crown to his son in a peaceful manner, something which eluded several monarchs before him."
Here a link to the Henry Tudor Society -