There was, of course, a little more to the Woodvilles than the fact they were 'social climbers.' Richard Woodville had been in command of an army during the French wars. He had met Jacquetta, the young widow of the Duke of Bedford when he had accompanied her on the voyage home to England from Rouen. In 1433 Woodville married Jacquetta in secret. Their eldest child, the aforementioned Elizabeth, was born four years later.
Edward, as we all know, fell instantly in lust when he came across Elizabeth. Richard Woodville's daughter was a strong-willed widow with two young sons and eight siblings to boot and Edward, as previously mentioned would undertake this marriage without the knowledge of one man who was so instrumental in bringing him to the throne - Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick. This event was a turning point for Richard Neville and the first the nail in the coffin of Richard Woodville.
Richard Neville was angered by the fact that the Woodville men were placed in important administrative roles. Other events such as the king’s refusal to sanction the marriage of his daughter to George, Duke of Clarence and the influence of the Herbert family the Earls of Pembroke in the royal court just rubbed salt into his wounds. Richard Neville was about to jump from the Yorkist ship into Lancastrian waters.
Warwick’s rebellion would see off William Herbert and his brother Richard at Northampton on the 26th July in 1469 and on this day, just seventeen days later Richard Woodville and his son John would be beheaded as traitors.
To Richard Neville, revenge may have been sweet - but in the words of Martin Luther King Jr
"The old law of 'an eye for an eye' leaves everybody blind."