• Tudor talks at Hampton Court Palace

    Jatinder Kailey from the Adult Learning team at Historic Royal Palaces has just let us know about a series of talks they’re holding as part of their season of evening talks at Hampton Court Palace on finding favour at court.

    “The Tudor royal court entertained a vast community of people who provided the engine of the monarchy. From mistresses to politicians and servant to nobleman, who held the positions of power? Join us this autumn as we explore how courtiers moved up and down the Tudor court hierarchy in a dangerous game of snakes and ladders. Did they succeed or fail?”

    There are 4 talks taking place in November:

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  • Why did everyone have red hair?

    Today’s Claire Chats video is inspired by an “ask the expert” question submitted by Tudor Society member Beth on red hair in Tudor times – thank you, Beth!

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  • 28 September 1599 – Robert Devereux upsets Elizabeth I

    On this day in history, 28th September 1599, Robert Devereux, 2nd Earl of Essex, strode into Queen Elizabeth I’s bedchamber unannounced and saw the Queen without her makeup or wig, without her “mask of youth”.

    Essex had been confirmed as Lord Lieutenant of Ireland on 30th December 1598 and he left England on 27th March 1599, arriving in Dublin on 14 April. His campaign against the Irish was unsuccessful. Essex had assumed that he’d be able to defeat the Earl of Tyrone and his men quickly, but as things dragged on he became disillusioned with the situation. Exhaustion, disillusionment and a fear that his enemies at court were undermining him and influencing the queen against him, led to him giving up on the Irish situation, making a truce with the Irish rebel leader (against the qqueen’s wishes) and returning to England without the queen’s permission. This amounted to desertion and disobedience, something which Elizabeth I could not and would not tolerate

    Devereux rushed back to court at Nonsuch Palace to offer an explanation but ended up making things worse when he strode into the queen’s bedchamber unannounced while she was getting ready:

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  • October 2017 Tudor Life – Portraits, Artists & Actors

    Here is the full version of our 84-page October edition of Tudor Life Magazine. This month we focus on Portraits, Artists & Actors, along with some wonderful features about Tudor property and more…

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  • October 2017 Tudor Life Taster

    Enjoy this sample of our 84-page October edition of Tudor Life Magazine. This month we focus on Portraits, Artists & Actors, along with some wonderful features about Tudor property and more…

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  • Stephen Borough

    Explorer, navigator and naval administrator Stephen Borough (Burrough) was born at Borough House, Northam Burrows, Northam in Devon, to Walter Borough and his wife Mary Dough on 25th September 1525.

    In his childhood, Borough was influenced by his uncle, the seaman John Borough, and probably helped him with his first measured coastal surveys of south Devon and Cornwall in 1538. His uncle taught him navigational skills, sailing skills, Spanish and Portuguese.

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  • This week in history 25 September – 1 October

    On this day in history…

    25th September:

    1513 – Vasco Núñez de Balboa, the Spanish explorer, reached the Pacific Ocean. He was the first European to have discovered the Pacific Ocean from the New World.
    1525 – Explorer, navigator and naval administrator Stephen Borough (Burrough) was born at Borough House, Northam Burrows, Northam in Devon, to Walter Borough and his wife Mary Dough.
    1534 – Death of Pope Clement VII in Rome from eating a death cap mushroom. He was laid to rest in Santa Maria sopra Minerva.
    1554 – Death of Richard Sampson, Bishop of Coventry and Lichfield, and former President of the Council of the Welsh Marches, at Eccleshall in Staffordshire. He was buried in the parish church at Eccleshall. Sampson had acted as the King’s Proctor at the fall of Anne Boleyn in 1536.
    1555 – The Peace of Augsburg, or Augsburg Settlement, was signed by Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor, and the princes of the Schmalkaldic League at Augsburg.
    1558 – Gertrude Courtenay, Marchioness of Exeter, made her will. She died soon after and was buried in Wimborne Minster, Dorset. Gertrude was the mother of Edward Courtenay, 1st Earl of Devon, who was imprisoned for his part in Wyatt’s Rebellion in 1554. Gertrude, herself, was imprisoned in 1538, and her husband was executed for treason.
    1584 – Death of Thomas Copley, Roman Catholic, in exile near Antwerp. He had served Elizabeth I as Commissioner of the Peace for Surrey, and she was godmother to his son, Henry, but he lost royal favour when he converted to Catholicism in 1563. He left England in 1570, being unable to accept royal supremacy and Elizabeth I’s religious measures.
    1586 – Mary, Queen of Scots was moved to Fotheringhay Castle in Northamptonshire, and Elizabeth finally backed down and agreed to the appointing of 36 commissioners to act as judges in her trial.
    1594 – Death of Gregory Fiennes, 10th Baron Dacre, at Chelsea. He was buried in Chelsea Old Church.
    1602 – Death of William Redman, Bishop of Norwich, at the Episcopal Palace. He was buried in the cathedral choir.

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  • William Spenser and Robert Hardesty, Catholic martyrs

    On 24th September 1589, William Spenser, a Roman Catholic priest, and layman Robert Hardesty were executed at York. Spenser was executed for being a priest, and Hardesty for sheltering Spenser.

    In his book Acts of English martyrs, John Hungerford Pollen, writes that William Spenser was born in Gisburn in Yorkshire and that he was educated at Trinity College, Oxford, supported by his uncle William Horn. There he was a scholar and fellow, and graduated MA in 1580. Pollen states that he met Spenser at Oxford:

    “There I knew him for about eight years, always leading a most upright life, but suffering much at the hands of the heretics even before he left the university, because he was looked on as leaning somewhat towards the Catholic faith. They brought many charges against him, and he would argue against them, but never recklessly. From the time he was a boy his zeal for souls was marvellous, and he never neglected the first rudiments of faith taught him by his uncles, but acted up to them with zeal and constancy to the time of his death.”

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  • Crossword – Elizabeth I’s Favourites

    This week’s Sunday puzzler is a fun crossword. How much do you know about the courtiers who surrounded Queen Elizabeth I and who were her favourites? Test yourself with this crossword. Good luck!

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  • New forum category – Questions for the Spicery

    We’ve added a brand-new category to the Forum, “Questions for the Spicery”, a place where the members can ask anything they’re ever wanted to know about medieval food but were afraid to ask.

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