Edward IV (28 April 1442 – 9 April 1483) was King of England from 4 March 1461 to 3 October 1470, and again from 11 April 1471 until his death.
He was the first Yorkist king.
His father, Richard, 3rd Duke of York, was a lineal descendant of Edward III and until 1453, heir presumptive to Henry VI.
Because Henry was less than year old when he came to the throne in September 1422, his early reign was marked by political infighting within the regency council.
Things did not improve once Henry reached the age of majority, when a series of economic setbacks and military defeats in France led to Henry having a complete mental breakdown in 1453 and the government of England descending into chaos.
The result was a series of domestic conflicts, beginning in 1455, which were later known as The Wars of the Roses.
After his father was killed in 1460, Edward deposed Henry and became king in 1461, with the help of the Earl of Warwick, known as 'The Kingmaker'.
Divisions developed after Edward's marriage to Elizabeth Woodville in 1464; Warwick switched sides in 1470 and Henry was restored to the throne.
Edward fled to Flanders, which was ruled by his brother-in-law Charles the Bold; in March 1471, he landed in northern England and marched south, winning victories at Barnet in April and Tewkesbury in May.
Warwick, Edward of Westminster and other senior Lancastrians were killed, while Henry died in the Tower of London a few days later.
Edward reigned in relative peace from April 1471, when he was restored, until his sudden death in 1483.
He was briefly succeeded by his minor son as Edward V, who was never coronated and along with his younger brother were subsequently declared illegitimate, deposed, and imprisoned in the Tower of London by the Duke of Gloucester, who became Richard III.