The Battle of Tewkesbury in Gloucestershire, which took place on May 4, 1471, completed one phase of the Wars of the Roses, and temporarily put an end to Lancastrian hopes of regaining the throne of England. There would be fourteen years of peace before another political coup finally settled the dispute between the two dynasties in the form of Henry Tudor.
Margaret relied heavily on the Duke of Somerset, her remaining experienced commander, but his skills were no match for those of the king. The Yorkists were superior in artillery, and Somerset misjudged his battle position just enough to allow the king's young brother, Richard, Duke of Gloucester (later King Richard III of England]), to attack their flank. Panic set in among the retreating Lancastrians, and Somerset is alleged to have killed one of his own commanders, Lord Wenlock, as punishment for his fatal lack of initiative. In a field known as the "Bloody Meadow", perhaps as many as half Somerset's forces were slaughtered. Some fled to the nearby Tewkesbury Abbey, where their enemies are said to have pursued them. One of the casualties was Edward, Prince of Wales, though whether he died during or after the battle is uncertain. He remains the only Prince of Wales to have died in battle. All his commanders, including Somerset, were summarily executed shortly afterwards, leaving Queen Margaret and her daughter-in-law, Anne Neville, as the king's most prestigious prisoners. King Henry VI, already imprisoned in the Tower of London, was murdered there a few days later.