The Tudor Society
  • 20 September – Anthony Babington and the Babington Plot

    On this day in Tudor history, 20th September 1586, Anthony Babington, John Ballard, John Savage, Chidiock Tichborne and three other conspirators were executed near St Giles-in-the-Fields in London.

    They suffered full traitors’ deaths, being hanged, drawn and quartered, after being found guilty of treason for plotting to assassinate Queen Elizabeth I in the famous Babington Plot, which sought to replace Elizabeth with Mary, Queen of Scots.

    Find out more about Anthony Babington, the Babington Plot, the men involved, how it was discovered, and how it led to Mary, Queen of Scots’ execution, in today’s talk.

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  • Quiz – September Tudor Events Part 1

    This week’s quiz tests your knowledge of events that happened in the first half of September in the Tudor period. All these events have been written/talked about here on the Tudor Society, so browsing the site might just help you.

    Good luck!

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  • 19 September – Explorer Thomas Cavendish and his circumnavigation

    On this day in Tudor history, 19th September 1560, explorer, navigator and privateer Thomas Cavendish was baptised at St Martin’s Church, Trimley St Martin in Suffolk.

    Cavendish is known for his imitation of Sir Francis Drake’s circumnavigation of the globe, which he undertook in 1586, and for being the first Englishman to explore the island of St Helena, in the mid-Atlantic, but he also had a reputation as a spendthrift and his final voyage was a failure.

    Find out more about Thomas Cavendish in today’s talk.

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  • New Tudor music album – Music for Anne Boleyn: Court music from her rise and reign

    A big thank you to composer and music producer Roberto Lorenz who has written this guest article for us today about his album, “Music for Anne Boleyn – Court music from her rise and reign”, which was released on 7th September 2020.

    Over to Roberto…

    Ever since my history teacher first mentioned her, I’ve been obsessed with Anne Boleyn, who, as he put it, “reached the highest peak and fell”. There’s something surreal about Anne’s rapid rise and fall – it’s like a tragic fairy tale and yet a perfect example for the always astonishing, always unpredictable reality of life. Anne Boleyn is one of those historical figures that become more mysterious the more we find out about them. We’ll never fully understand her complex personality, never hear her voice, never see how she moved and gestured, never even know her birthday. However, one direct connection to Anne has survived: the music of her lifetime.

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  • 18 September – Edward Courtenay, a prospective king consort

    On this day in Tudor history, 18th September 1556, Edward Courtenay, 1st Earl of Devon, died from a fever at Padua in Italy.

    Courtenay had been sent overseas after he was implicated in Wyatt’s Rebellion as a future husband and consort of Queen Mary I’s half-sister, Elizabeth, the future Queen Elizabeth I.

    In today’s talk, I tell you more about this Earl of Devon and how he was a prospective bridegroom for both of Henry VIII’s daughters.

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  • Harvest Home

    Last week, I spoke about the farming year and the chores that were done in rural communities each month and in this week’s Claire Chats I focus on Harvest Home, the celebration following the harvest.

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  • 17 September – Walter Devereux, 1st Viscount Hereford

    On this day in Tudor history, 17th September 1558, Walter Devereux, 1st Viscount Hereford and grandfather of Robert Devereux, 2nd Earl of Essex and a favourite of Elizabeth I, died at the Devereux family seat at Chartley in Staffordshire.

    Devereux had a long and distinguished court career, serving Henry VIII, Princess Mary in Ludlow, and Edward VI. He also married at around the age of 11 and was imprisoned at one point. An interesting Tudor man.

    Find out more about this soldier and royal servant in today’s talk:

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  • 16 September – John Colet dies after three attacks of sweating sickness

    On this day in Tudor history, 16th September 1519, scholar, humanist, theologian, Dean of St Paul’s and founder of St Paul’s School, John Colet died after suffering three attacks of sweating sickness between 1517 and 1519. Humanists such as Erasmus were influenced by Colet’s work.

    In today’s talk, I share an overview of this influential scholar’s life, including the fact that he was one of 20-22 children and that he used his wealth to refound a school.

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  • 15 September – Elizabeth I saves the day!

    On this day in Tudor history, 15th September 1589, the Battle of Arques began.

    This battle was part of the final war of the French Wars of Religion, a series of conflicts in France from 1562-1598 between Catholics and Huguenots. It was fought between the new French king, Henry IV, and the Catholic League led by Charles of Lorraine, Duke of Mayenne, and looked bad for Henry until troops sent by Elizabeth I arrived – phew!

    You can find out more about what led to this battle, what happened at the battle, and what happened next, in this talk.

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  • 14 September – Sir William Kingston, Constable of the Tower of London

    On this day in Tudor history, 14th September 1540, Sir William Kingston, Constable of the Tower of London, Knight of the Garter and comptroller of the King’s household, died at his home in Painswick in Gloucestershire.

    Sir William Kingston was Constable of the Tower of London while Queen Anne Boleyn was imprisoned there in May 1536, and his letters to Thomas Cromwell are an excellent primary source for historians, but there’s much more to this royal servant than that. He had a wonderful career in service to the king and benefited as a result.

    Find out more about Kingston in today’s talk.

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  • 13 September – Tudor Poet John Leland

    On this day in Tudor history, 13th September 1503, poet and antiquary John Leland was born. Leland is known for his Latin poems and his antiquarian writings which included a defence of the history of King Arthur, which he presented to Henry VIII and his notes on his travels around England and Wales.

    Leland also wrote verses for Queen Anne Boleyn’s coronation procession and was a royal chaplain. He had a very sad end, though, suffering some kind of mental breakdown and going mad.

    Find out more about John Leland, his life and works, in today’s talk.

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  • Tudor Farming Crossword Puzzle

    Following on from my Claire Chats talk on the Tudor farming year, I thought I’d test your knowledge of farming in Tudor times with this fun crossword puzzle. It’s not too hard!

    Simply click on the link or image below to open and print out.

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  • 12 September – The newly married Earl of Argyll dies suddenly

    On this day in Tudor history, 12th September 1573, Protestant reformer, and leading politician in the reign of Mary, Queen of Scots, Archibald Campbell, 5th Earl of Argyll, died suddenly at Barbreck. He had got married six weeks earlier and had shown no signs of illness before retiring to bed.

    Argyll was the third most important noble in Scotland, the most important highland chief, and a founder of the Lords of the Congregation. He went from opposing Mary, Queen of Scots, to leading her troops in battle.

    Why?

    Find out all about this interesting Scot’s life and career in today’s talk.

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  • The Tudor Farming Year

    I live in a rural community and here I have reminders all the time of the farming calendar. With the signs of autumn all around, my thoughts turned to harvest and the farming year in Tudor times, so I thought I’d talk about that for this week’s Claire Chats video.

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  • 11 September – Barnaby Fitzpatrick, friend of Edward VI

    On this day in Tudor history, 11th September 1581, Barnaby Fitzpatrick, 2nd Baron of Upper Ossory, died in Dublin, at the home of surgeon, William Kelly.

    In his youth, Fitzpatrick had been friends with Prince Edward (the future Edward VI) and had been educated with him. Historians once believed him to have been the young king’s “whipping boy”. He went on to serve Edward as a Gentleman of the Privy Chamber when Edward became kin, but ended his days as a prisoner.

    Find out more about Barnaby Fitzpatrick, his life and career, and how he came to such a sad end, in today’s talk.

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  • 10 September – The Battle of Pinkie Cleugh

    On this day in Tudor history, Saturday 10th September 1547, in the reign of King Edward VI, the Battle of Pinkie Cleugh, also known as the Battle of Pinkie, took place near Musselburgh, in Scotland, on the banks of the River Esk. The English forces, led by Edward Seymour, Duke of Somerset, defeated the Scots, killing thousands.

    It was a bloody battle, but started off well for the Scots. In today’s talk, I share an eye-witness account of how the battle changed so dramatically, leading to the loss of between 6,000 and 15,000 Scots.

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  • 9 September – The coronation of Mary, Queen of Scots

    On this day in Tudor history, 9th September 1543, the 30th anniversary of the Battle of Flodden, Mary, Queen of Scots, was crowned queen at the Chapel Royal of Stirling Castle. Mary was just nine months old.

    Find out more about how Mary came to the throne, her coronation ceremony, in which Mary howled, and how she was already promised in marriage to Henry VIII’s son, the future Edward VI, in today’s talk.

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  • 8 September – John Shakespeare, father of William Shakespeare

    On this day in Tudor history, 8th September 1601, John Shakespeare, father of playwright William Shakespeare, was buried at Holy Trinity Church in Stratford-upon-Avon.

    John was a glover and whittawer, and also an important man in the town of Stratford-upon-Avon, serving as high bailiff, chief alderman and deputy bailiff, and being given the right to educate his children at the local grammar school for free. However, he also ran into trouble at times.

    Find out more about the life of William Shakespeare’s father, John Shakespeare, in today’s talk.

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  • 7 September – Charles Brandon marries Catherine Willoughby

    On this day in Tudor history, 7th September 1533, just over two months after the death of his previous wife, Mary Tudor. Queen of France, forty-nine-year-old Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk, married his ward, fourteen-year-old Catherine Willoughby.

    Find out more about this Tudor couple, how they came to be married, what their marriage was like, and what happened to them, in today’s talk.

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  • 6 September – Martin Luther writes to the Pope

    On this day in Tudor history, 6th September 1520, the famous reformer Martin Luther sent his pamphlet “On the Freedom of a Christian” (also known as “A Treatise on Christian Liberty”) to Pope Leo X. In the pamphlet, he emphasised the “two-fold nature” of Christians as saints and sinners, flesh and spirit.

    Luther is, of course, seen as the catalyst of the European Reformation, and in today’s talk, I explain why, what he believed, how he ended up being excommunicated and made an outlaw, and what happened to him.

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  • Elizabeth I Quiz – Early Life

    As it’s the anniversary of the birth of Queen Elizabeth I, the longest reigning of the Tudor monarchs, this week, I though I’d test your knowledge of Elizabeth I’s early life, her preaccession life.

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  • 5 September – The death of Bloody Bonner

    On this day in Tudor history, 5th September 1569, in the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, Edmund Bonner, Bishop of London and a man nicknamed “Bloody Bonner”, died in Marshalsea Prison. He had started his career in Henry VIII’s reign and was not just a churchman, he was also a diplomat.

    In today’s talk, I flesh out this Tudor bishop who got his nickname from being in charge of burning reformers in London. Find out about his life, career and how he ended up dying in prison.

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  • When two or three are gathered together

    Tudor music lovers - we've been told about a performance of Tudor music written by William Byrd and John Mundy being performed by The Hampstead Collective.

    7th September, 2020 7-8pm

    Live from Hampstead Parish Church, London
    Sacred Meditation:
    'When two or three are gathered together'
    The 'Mass for Three Voices' by William Byrd, and domestic sacred music by Byrd and John Mundy, with readings from the writings of Richard Hooker.
    www.thehampsteadcollective.com

  • 4 September – A marriage is agreed between Henry VIII and Anne of Cleves

    On this day in Tudor history, 4th September 1539, William, Duke of Cleves, signed the marriage treaty promising his sister, Anne of Cleves, in marriage to King Henry VIII.

    Anne would of course become Henry VIII’s fourth wife.

    Find out all about the marriage agreement and its terms, and what happened next, in today’s talk.

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  • Fast Food Tudor Style

    Fast food is very much part of our world today, with cities worldwide having burger franchises, pizza outlets, fish and chip shops, Indian and Chinese restaurants, and lots more, and it made me wonder about fast food and street food in Tudor times, so I did some digging for this week’s Claire Chats talk…

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  • 3 September – The death of a clown

    On this day in Tudor history, 3rd September 1588, or possibly the 5th September, actor and clown, Richard Tarlton, died in Shoreditch. He was buried in St Leonard’s Church, Shoreditch.

    Tarlton was a member of the Queen’s Men acting company, but is famed for his post-play jigs as a clown. He was also known for being able to cheer up Queen Elizabeth I – how wonderful.

    Find out more about Tudor clown Richard Tarlton, his life and career, in today’s talk.

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  • 2 September – A very wealthy Irish earl dies in the Tower

    On this day in Tudor history, 2nd September 1534, Gerald Fitzgerald, 9th Earl of Kildare and Lord Deputy of Ireland, died in the Tower of London at around the age of 47. Kildare had been arrested on 29th June 1534, accused of corruption and causing rebellion in Ireland.

    Kildare seems to have spent most of his career being accused of crimes, but his son Silken Thomas’s rebellion was his final undoing.

    He was already ill when he was arrested and imprisoned, suffering from the after effects of being shot, but at least his wife was able to nurse him.

    Find out more about this Earl of Kildare, his life and career, in today’s talk.

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  • Toni Mount’s books on special offer until 3 September

    I’m sure you’ll all join me in congratulating Tudor Life magazine regular contributor Toni Mount on the release of her 8th Sebastian Foxley medieval murder mystery novel, The Colour of Shadows, today. As I’m married to her publisher, I was able to read it early (yay!) and it’s my favourite so far, soooooo good! Well done, Toni!

    If you haven’t read any of the Seb Foxley books, now is the perfect time because books 1-7 are 99p or 99c each until the end of Thursday (3 September). It’s a wonderful series. Like C J Sansom’s novels, Toni does a fabulous job at bringing historical London to life, with the sights and smell, and her characters are wonderful.

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  • 1 September – Elizabethan actor Edward Alleyn

    On this day in Tudor history, 1st September 1566, Edward Alleyn, a major figure in the Elizabethan theatre, was born in the parish of St Botolph without Bishopsgate, London, and baptised the following day.

    In today’s talk, I share some facts about Edward Alleyn, including his personal life, the plays he was involved in, his theatre investments, and his desire to be appointed master of the bears, bulls and mastiff dogs!

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  • Joan Beaufort and Richard III – Nathen Amin – Expert Talks

    This month we have Nathen Amin back as our expert speaker. Nathen’s knowledge on the Beaufort’s is amazing and this talk takes us to an area most wouldn’t have thought about … Joan Beaufort and Richard III.

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