• The Wars of the Roses Quiz

    The Tudors came to the throne of England following a time of instability and civil war, a time known as the Wars of the Roses. But how much do you know about the Wars of the Roses? Grab your favourite beverage and snack and let’s get those little grey cells working! Good luck!

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  • Roger Ascham

    Scholar and royal tutor Roger Ascham is thought to have been born around 1515 and he was educated in the household of Sir Humphrey Wingfield, a lawyer and a man who served as Speaker of the House of Commons in the 1530s. When he was about 15, he was sent to St John’s College, Cambridge, where he chose to devoted himself to the study of Greek. He graduated BA in 1533/4 and was nominated as a fellow before graduating MA in 1537. At Cambridge, he met Sir John Cheke and he taught William Grindal, who would go on to be a tutor to Princess Elizabeth from 1544 to 1548.

    In 1548, Princess Elizabeth, daughter of Henry VIII, insisted that Ascham become her tutor after the death of William Grindal from the plague. According to his biographer Rosemary O’Day, Ascham “contrived a classical and Christian curriculum for the princess that was designed to equip her for a leading role in the state”, and used his pioneering language teaching method on her, double translation. He wrote about this method in “The Scholemaster”, his famous and influential treatise on education. He carried on tutoring Princess Elizabeth during Mary I’s reign, and was impressed by the Princess’ intelligence, her language skills and her “political understanding”.

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  • January 2018 – Tudor Life – Henry VIII

    Here is the full version of our 86-page January edition of Tudor Life Magazine. This month we have many articles about this fascinating king – all the way through to his final days.

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  • January 2018 Tudor Life Taster

    Enjoy this sample article from our 86-page January edition of Tudor Life Magazine. This month we have many articles about the fascinating Henry VIII – all the way through to his final days.

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  • Tudor Drinks – What did the Tudors drink?

    In this week’s Claire Chats video talk, I talk about what Tudor people actually drank, in a time when water was not safe to drink.

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  • Childermas or Holy Innocents’ Day

    Today, 28th December, is Childermas or Holy Innocents’ Day. It was part of the Twelve Days of Christmas in Tudor times and is a feast day that remembers the slaughter of the baby boys ordered by King Herod in Bethlehem when he heard of the birth of the Christ Child, “the Massacre of the Innocents”.

    The apostle Matthew told of the atrocity:

    “16 Then Herod, when he saw that he was mocked of the wise men, was exceeding wroth, and sent forth, and slew all the children that were in Bethlehem, and in all the coasts thereof, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had diligently inquired of the wise men.

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  • 26 December – The Feast of St Stephen

    The day after Christmas, which is today known as Boxing Day, was the feast day of St Stephen, the first Christian martyr or protomartyr. Stephen was stoned to death after being accused of blasphemy and his death was witnessed by Paul the Apostle, then known as Saul of Tarsus:

    Acts 7:54 – 8:2:

    “54 When they heard these things, they were cut to the heart, and they gnashed on him with their teeth.

    55 But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up stedfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God,

    56 And said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God.

    57 Then they cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their ears, and ran upon him with one accord,

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  • This week in history 25 -31 December

    25th December:

    Christmas Day – Happy Christmas!
    1549 – Death of Stephen Vaughan, merchant, merchant adventurer, diplomat and administrator, in London. He was buried at London’s St Mary-le-Bow. Vaughan served Sir Thomas Cromwell as a diplomat between 1524 and 1539, and moved into Henry VIII’s service on Cromwell’s fall. He acted as the King’s Chief Financial Agent in the Netherlands from 1544 to 1546, and became Under-Treasurer of the Tower of London Mint in 1544.
    1553 – Birth of Thomas Thomas, Puritan printer and lexicographer, in London. He became the printer of Cambridge University in 1583, and concentrated on printing Protestant theology and education works. He is known for his Latin dictionary.
    1569 (25th or 26th) – Killing of Sir John Borthwick, soldier, diplomat and Protestant, near Bewcastle in Cumberland. He was killed by the Forster family as he was fighting on the side of James Stewart, 1st Earl of Moray and the Regent, against Mary, Queen of Scots’s forces. Borthwick had served Edward VI as a diplomat, Elizabeth I as a military commander and Mary, Queen of Scots as a diplomat.
    1587 – Death of Brian Darcy, magistrate, Sheriff of Essex, witch-hunter and contributor to the 1582 “A true and just recorde of the information, examination and confession of all the witches, taken at S. Oses”. “A True and Just Recorde” argued for harsher punishments for those found guilty of witchcraft.
    1634 – Death of Lettice Blount (née Knollys, other married names: Devereux and Dudley) at the age of ninety-one. Lettice died at her home at Drayton Bassett and was buried beside her second husband, Sir Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester, in the Beauchamp Chapel of St Mary’s Church, Warwick.
    1596 – Death of Sir Henry Curwen, member of Parliament, Justice of the Peace and Sheriff. He served Edward VI, Mary I and Elizabeth I loyally.

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  • Tudor Advent Calendar 16 – 24

    Here are more of our daily advent videos packed with fun and facts from the Tudor period.

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  • Christmas fun

    As it’s Christmas Eve, I thought we’d have a Christmas-themed crossword puzzle today, rather than a history one. I hope you enjoy completing this. Merry Christmas!

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