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The Tudor Society

26 August – A devastated Mary I and Anne Boleyn prepares to give birth

On this day in Tudor history, 26th August 1555, Queen Mary I and her husband, Philip of Spain, departed from Whitehall in preparation for Philip's return to the Low Countries.

This was an awful time for Mary I. She had just come out of confinement after months of believing she was pregnant, and now her husband was leaving her. He'd be gone for over 18 months.

Find out more about Mary's state of health and mind, the arrangements for Philip's departure, and Mary's reaction...

Also on this day in Tudor history, 26th August 1533, Queen Anne Boleyn, second wife of King Henry VIII, prepared for the birth of her first child by "taking her chamber" at Greenwich Palace.

This child was of course the future Queen Elizabeth I.

“Taking her chamber” was a common practice in Tudor England, and I explain all of the rituals and traditions involved in this video:

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26 August – A devastated Mary I and Anne Boleyn prepares to give birth