On this day in Tudor history, 8th August 1588, Queen Elizabeth I decided to accept Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester's invitation to visit the troops he had gathered near Tilbury Fort to guard the eastern approach to London from the expected invasion by the Spanish Armada.
In today's "on this day in Tudor history" talk, I explain why Leicester invited his queen to visit the troops - there was more to it than just boosting morale.
Also on this day in history:
- 1503 – The formal wedding of Margaret Tudor and James IV of Scotland in the chapel of Holyroodhouse. The couple had been married by proxy on 15th January 1503 with Patrick Hepburn, the Earl of Bothwell and Lord High Admiral of Scotland, standing in for James. Bothwell was the great-grandfather of James Hepburn, 4th Earl of Bothwell, husband of Mary, Queen of Scots.
- 1553 – Burial of Edward VI in a white marble vault beneath the altar of Henry VII's Lady Chapel in Westminster Abbey. His grave was unmarked until a memorial stone was placed in front of the altar in 1966. The funeral service was performed by Thomas Cranmer, in keeping with Edward VI's Protestant faith, so Mary I attended a private mass for her half-brother's soul in the Tower of London.
- 1558 – Birth of George Clifford, 3rd Earl of Cumberland, courtier and privateer, at Brougham Castle, Westmorland. Elizabeth I nicknamed Cumberland her “rogue”, and he was her Champion from 1590 until her death.
- 1560 – Death of William May, Archbishop-elect of York, in London. He died on the day that he was elected Archbishop.
- 1570 – Execution of John Felton, Roman Catholic martyr, at St Paul's Churchyard. He was hanged, drawn and quartered.
- 1573 – Death of Simon Renard, Imperial Ambassador, in Madrid, Spain.
- 1586 or 1587 – Execution of John Finglow, Roman Catholic priest and martyr, at York. He was hanged, drawn and quartered.