Entertainment

What Inspired Game of Thrones? England’s 15th Century Wars of the Roses

The HBO TV series Game of Thrones might be loved by millions around the world, but many of those people are unlikely to have a good understanding of exactly what inspired the hit adapted from fantasy novels by George R. R. Martin. Martin himself has revealed that the bulk of the inspiration for his novels was a series of conflicts in fifteenth century England called the Wars of the Roses.

These wars were fought sporadically between 1455 and 1487 and saw supporters of two royal houses, the House of Lancaster and the House of York, battling for control of the English throne. As a result, military victories saw the throne change hands several times during this period, the wars finally ending in 1485 when a distant Lancastrian claimant defeated Richard III in battle to become Henry VII.

Helpfully, TED-Ed – the educational arm of the nonprofit company TED – has even recently posted a video which makes clearer how the Wars of the Roses inspired the TV hit that we all know and love. You can watch that video below for an intriguing history lesson…

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