*Note: The facts of this tale were told to me personally by a Yeoman Warder (Beefeater) at the Tower of London. If you dispute the facts, go argue with him.
We've all heard the nursery rhyme, Humpty Dumpty at least once in our lives. It goes something like this:
Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall
And all the king's horses
And all the king's men
Tried to put humpty back together again.
Behind this incredibly famous nursery rhyme is a very rich history of the Royal Family of Britain, more specifically of Richard III, also known as Richard of Gloucster, son of King Henry III. King Richard III was a really brutal man, who attained the crown through deception and murder. His round and egg-like appearance earned him the name Humpty Dumpty.
Richard III succeeded his brother, Edward IV, after the latter died. Edward IV had two young male heirs, who after his death held the claim to the throne. However, conspiracy led to the bloody murder of these two young princes in the Tower of London. Today, the tower where the corpses of the two young princes were found in the 19th century is known as the Bloody Tower.
Richard's reign was marred by war and violence. The eventual result was the disposal of Richard by Henry VII, also known as Henry Tudor. Thus the rhyme, 'Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.'
This period in English History was visited by William Shakespeare in his play, Richard III, and later by Hollywood in the film Richard III starring Ian McKellen.
Nursery Rhymes, recited so innocently by children all over the world, have an extremely deep and rich history behind them, not all histories being innocent. Other's include 'Ring around the rosey,' which is a rhyme describing to the way people died of Bubonic Plague during the Black Death of mideival Europe. But none so bloody as Humpty Dumpty.