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The Tudor Society

26 December – Boxing Day and Henry VIII’s will

Happy St Stephen's Day! Happy Boxing Day!

In today's talk, I explain how St Stephen's Day was celebrated in Tudor times and why it's known as Boxing Day, before moving on to today's "on this day event".

On this day in Tudor history, 26th December 1546, an ill Henry VIII made some changes to his will in preparation for his nine-year-old son, Edward, inheriting the throne. I explain all...

Also on this day in history:

  • 1526 – Birth of Rose Throckmorton (née Lok, other married name: Hickman), Protestant and businesswoman, in London. She was the third child of Sir William Lok, a mercer who had also served Henry VIII as a gentleman usher. Rose was married twice: to merchant Anthony Hickman and to Simon Throckmorton of Brampton.
  • 1545 – Death of Sir George Bowes, soldier, rebel and Captain of Norham Castle. He was buried at Alnwick. Bowes was a member of the rebel army during the 1536 Pilgrimage of Grace, but the patronage of his uncle, Sir Robert Bowes, protected him. He fought in the 1542 Anglo-Scottish War and in the 1544 expedition. He was granted the Barony of Coldingham as a reward for seizing Coldingham Priory on November 1544, but was then taken prisoner in January 1545 and lost the barony.

There are 2 comments Go To Comment

  1. M /

    So, he did leave instruction for Edward Seymour to become a duke. I really did think that was done after his death as part of Seymour’s protectorate takeover. Interesting. Thanks, Claire. Michelle t

  2. R /

    It’s a great shame that much of Henry’s will was ignored, although to all tense and purposes the succession remained in tact, at least as long as Edward was alive. Edward Seymour and others were raised to ranks he had decreed, Earls and Dukes, his daughters were well provided for with land and money and it was obvious that other provisions were kept because nobody was allowed to marry without the permission of the Council. The most important provision was ignored, however, with a Council of Fourteen Equals being originally chosen to rule for young Edward. However, Edward Seymour, working with Sir William Paulette and others won the support of the majority to become Lord Protector, with Regency powers to rule. The Seymour ambitions showed themselves to their fullest as they believed they had the best right to rule, being the young King’s blood relatives. As Henry didn’t have any brothers to act as Protectors and mistrusted Katherine Parr in the same role, they were right.

    For more information on Henry Viii will I highly recommend The King is Dead: The Last Will and Testimony of Henry Viii by Susannah Lipscomb.

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26 December – Boxing Day and Henry VIII’s will