What happens when a jury doesn't find an alleged traitor guilty and, instead, acquits him? Well, the jurors get arrested and thrown into prison, of course!
I explain exactly what happened on this day in Tudor history, 17th April 1554, in the case of Sir Nicholas Throckmorton. I also give details on how the jurors finally got released and what happened to Throckmorton. Don't you just love Tudor justice?!
Also on this day in history:
- 1534 - Sir Thomas More, Henry VIII's Lord Chancellor, was sent to the Tower of London after refusing to swear the “Oath of Succession”.
- 1554 – Thomas Wyatt the Younger's head was stolen in the rejoicing after Throckmorton's acquittal.
- 1554 – Birth of Stephen Gosson, Church of England clergyman, satirist and anti-theatrical polemicist. In 1579 he published his “Schoole of Abuse, containing a pleasant invective against Poets, Pipers, Plaiers, Jesters and such like Caterpillars of the Commonwealth”.
- 1568 – Birth of George Brooke, conspirator, son of William Brooke, 10th Baron Cobham and his wife Frances (née Newton). Brooke conspired with Sir Griffin Markham and William Watson to kidnap King James I and end the persecution of Catholics. The plot was called the Bye Plot, and never took place because the authorities found out about their plans. Brooke was arrested, tried at Winchester 15th November 1603 and executed on Winchester Castle green 5th December 1603.
- 1595 – Execution of Henry Walpole (St Henry Walpole), Jesuit martyr, in York. He was hanged, drawn and quartered. He was accused of treason on three counts "Walpole had abjured the realm without licence; that he had received holy orders overseas; and that he had returned to England as a Jesuit priest to exercise his priestly functions".