Branch News

White Rose Roof Boss – St. George’s Chapel, Windsor

The Canadian Branch is very proud to have adopted a roof boss in St. George’s Chapel, Windsor this year, donating the funds necessary for its cleaning and conservation.  Identified as “NN3.8 White Rose of York”, this boss is located in the northwest end of the chapel, in the Nave, as indicated on the floor plan.

Certificate of Adoption

From the accompanying literature (Courtesy of St. George’s Chapel):

The white rose of York and the red rose of Lancaster are well known from historical accounts of the Wars of the Roses, but their origins as royal badges are uncertain.  There is evidence that the Yorkists had adopted a rose by at least 1436.  Roger Mortimer, Earl of March, a founder knight of the Order of the Garter, had a white rose assigned to him in Writhe’s Garter Armorial and it is likely that Edward IV adopted the white rose as a royal badge in acknowledgement of his descent to the throne through the Mortimer family.   A pedigree roll of Edward IV dating from 1461 now held in the British Library (BL Add Ms. 18268A) indicates that the rose emblem had descended to the House of York from the Mortimers, although its colour was not specified.  However, on another contemporary pedigree Edward IV’s rose is shown as white and there is evidence that he bore a white rose on his banner in 1471.  The white rose was employed as a badge by later Yorkist leaders and roses appeared on the coinage of Edward IV, Edward V and Richard III.

..The white rose is also found without adornment as a roof boss, to represent Elizabeth of York….This white rose roof boss, situated on the north side of the Nave, forms part of the Nave vaulting constructed between about 1503 and 1506. The device symbolises Elizabeth of York, who married Henry VII in 1486 and was crowned Queen Consort in November 1487. According to contemporary accounts, the white rose was much in evidence at her coronation and during the remainder of her lifetime.

(March 2014)