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The Tudor Society

23 February – The execution of Henry Grey, Duke of Suffolk, and the fate of his head

Henry Grey, Duke of Suffolk, father of Lady Jane Grey, was beheaded on this day in 1554 after being found guilty of treason. I explain how he went from being pardoned to being condemned to death and executed in just a few months, and also share his execution speech.

I also share a story regarding his alleged mummified head!

Find out more about Henry Grey's head in my Claire Chats talk on the topic here.

You can find out more about Suffolk's life here.
Also on this day in history:

  • 1503 – Burial of Elizabeth of York, Queen Consort of Henry VII and mother of Henry VIII, at Westminster Abbey.
  • 1512 – Birth of William Framyngham, scholar and author, at Norwich, Norfolk. Unfortunately, his works are lost, but his friend, Dr John Caius listed seven of his works, which included heroic verse, a poem in pentameters and hexameters, a poem on idolatry and two books of prose.
  • 1525 – Start of the Battle of Pavia during the Italian Wars of 1521-1526. The imperial troops of Charles V defeated those of Francis I and Francis I was captured, imprisoned and forced into signing the Treaty of Madrid.
  • 1533 – Death of James Denton, Archdeacon of Cleveland and Dean of Lichfield, at Ludlow. He was buried in St Lawrence's Church, Ludlow. Denton had also been Chancellor to the Council of Princess Mary.
  • 1574 – France began the fifth Holy War against the Huguenots.
  • 1601 – Burial of Job Throckmorton, religious pamphleteer and Member of Parliament, at Haseley in Warwickshire. It is believed that he was one of the men responsible for the “Martin Marprelate tracts”.
  • 1628 – Burial of John Guy, politician, colonist and Governor of Newfoundland. It is said that he was buried in St. Stephen's Church, in his home-town of Bristol, but there is no record of his burial there.

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23 February – The execution of Henry Grey, Duke of Suffolk, and the fate of his head