The Tudor Society

19 March – Elizabeth Seymour, Lady Cromwell

On this day in Tudor history, 19th March 1568, Elizabeth Seymour, Lady Cromwell, died. She was around fifty years old at her death.

Elizabeth was the sister of a queen, and a lord protector, and two of her brothers were executed as traitors, but what else do we know about Elizabeth Seymour and how is she linked to the Cromwell family and a portrait once thought to be of Queen Catherine Howard?

Find out more in today's talk.

Also on this day in Tudor history, 19th March 1563, Arthur Brooke, the man who wrote the very first version of the story of Romeo and Juliet in English, died in a shipwreck off the coast of Sussex. Find out more about him and his version of the story in last year’s video:

Also on this day in Tudor history:

  • 1563 – Peace (Edict) of Amboise signed at the Château of Amboise by Catherine de' Medici, as regent for her son, Charles IX. Catherine initiated this truce after the assassination of Francis, Duke of Guise, at the Siege of Orléans. The Edict ended the first phase of the French Wars of Religion and guaranteed the Huguenots religious privileges and freedoms. Peace did not last long, however.
  • 1577 – Death of Edmund Harman, former barber of Henry VIII, at Burford in Oxfordshire. He had retired there after Henry VIII's death. Harman was buried at Taynton Church.
  • 1590 – Baptism of William Bradford, separatist and founder of the Plymouth Colony, Massachusetts, at Austerfield in Yorkshire. Bradford was Governor of the colony for over thirty years.


On this day in Tudor history, 19th March 1568, Elizabeth Seymour, Lady Cromwell, died. She was around fifty years old at her death.
Let me give you a few facts about this Tudor lady:

• Elizabeth Seymour was born in around 1518 and was the daughter of Sir John Seymour of Wolfhall in Wiltshire and his wife, Margery Wentworth. Her siblings included Jane Seymour, third wife of King Henry VIII; Edward Seymour, Lord Protector Somerset, and Thomas Seymour, 1st Baron Seymour of Sudeley.
• Elizabeth was married three times. She was married to Sir Anthony Ughtred by 1530, as his second wife, and had two children by him. He was appointed Captain and Governor of Jersey in 1532, taking Elizabeth with him to the island, but died in 1534. Following his death, Elizabeth, returned to England.
In 1537, the widowed Elizabeth wrote to Thomas Cromwell for help. She wrote “please it you to be so good unto me as through your means I might be holpen to obtain of the king’s grace to be farmer of one of these abbeys, if they fortune to go down.” She was hoping to have her precarious financial situation eased with the granting of a dissolved abbey. Instead, Thomas Cromwell arranged for her to marry his son and heir, 17-year-old Gregory Cromwell, who would later become Baron Cromwell. The couple married at Mortlake in August 1537. It was a happy and successful marriage, resulting in three sons and two daughters. Sadly, Gregory died of sweating sickness in 1551.
In 1554, Elizabeth had married her third and final husband, Sir John Paulet, later Lord St. John and 2nd Marquess of Winchester. Two of Elizabeth’s sons, Henry Ughtred and Henry Cromwell, married Paulet’s daughters, Elizabeth and Mary. Elizabeth did not have any children by Paulet.
• Elizabeth served three of Henry VIII’s wives: Anne Boleyn, Anne of Cleves and Catherine Howard.
• Elizabeth was laid to rest on 5th April 1568 at St Mary’s Church, Basing in Hampshire, the Paulet family church.
• A bit of trivia now – A portrait by Hans Holbein the Younger found in the collections of the Toledo Museum of Art and Hever Castle and once thought to be Catherine Howard, Henry VIII’s fifth wife, is now believed by several historians to be Elizabeth Seymour.

Only 1 comment so far Go To Comment

  1. M

    I’m fascinated. Why didn’t she serve her sister? Wishing you and your family the best during this world wide crisis. Michelle t

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19 March – Elizabeth Seymour, Lady Cromwell