The Tudor Society

Martinmas, Machyn and Madox

The charity of St Martin

How's that for alliteration: Martinmas, Machyn and Madox?!

Today, 11th November, is Martinmas, the Feast of St Martin of Tours, and the traditional day for slaughtering animals in Tudor times. You can find out more about St Martin and Martinmas on our November Feast Days page.

Today is also the anniversary of the burial of chronicler and merchant-taylor Henry Machyn (Machin) on 11th November 1563, in London. Machyn died after contracting the plague. He is known for his chronicle The Diary of Henry Machyn, Citizen and Merchant-Taylor of London, from A.D. 1550 to A.D. 1563, which is a wonderful primary source for the reigns of Edward VI, Lady Jane Grey, Mary I and the beginning of Elizabeth I's reign, and which can be read online at British History Online.

Another "on this day in history" event for 11th November is the birth of Richard Madox, diarist and Church of England clergyman, on 11th November 1546 in Shropshire. Madox is known for the diary he kept of Captain Edward Fenton's voyage to the Moluccas, while he was serving as Fenton's chaplain and secretary. Madox died during the voyage, on 27th February 1583, near Vitória, Brazil. Madox's diary was published by the Hakluyt Society in 1976 as An Elizabethan in 1582: the diary of Richard Madox, fellow of All Souls.

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Martinmas, Machyn and Madox