The Tudor Society
The Tudor Society
  • 21 March – Elizabeth I takes to her bed

    On this day in Tudor history, 21st March 1603, a dying Queen Elizabeth I finally took to her bed.

    Elizabeth I had been queen since November 1558, but now she was dying. She had deep-rooted melancholy, couldn’t sleep and was refusing to eat. She spent her days lying on cushions in her withdrawing chamber. But on 21st March, she was finally persuaded to go to bed.

    Find out more about these last days in this talk.

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  • 20 March – St Cuthbert Mayne, an Elizabethan priest and martyr

    On this day in Tudor history, 20th March 1544, Cuthbert Mayne (Main/Maine) or St Cuthbert Mayne, Roman Catholic priest and martyr, was baptised in Youlston in North Devon.

    Cuthbert Mayne has gone down in history as the first seminary priest to be martyred. He was hanged, drawn and quartered at Launceston on 30th November 1577, in the reign of Queen Elizabeth I.

    Let me tell you a bit more about this Elizabethan martyr.

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  • Tudor history from home

    Here in Spain, we’ve been on lockdown since Monday due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Now, I could use this as inspiration to talk about epidemics, the plague, influenza and sweating sickness in history, but I’m not. I’ll give you links to my talks on those, but I want to stop thinking about the nasty stuff.

    So, with so many people around the world in lockdown or self-isolating, I thought I’d give you some ideas for keeping occupied and getting your Tudor history fix.

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  • 19 March – Elizabeth Seymour, Lady Cromwell

    On this day in Tudor history, 19th March 1568, Elizabeth Seymour, Lady Cromwell, died. She was around fifty years old at her death.

    Elizabeth was the sister of a queen, and a lord protector, and two of her brothers were executed as traitors, but what else do we know about Elizabeth Seymour and how is she linked to the Cromwell family and a portrait once thought to be of Queen Catherine Howard?

    Find out more in today’s talk.

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  • 18 March – Elizabeth I is arrested

    On this day in Tudor history, 18th March 1554, Palm Sunday, the twenty-year-old Lady Elizabeth (the future Queen Elizabeth I) was escorted by barge from her home at Whitehall Palace along the River Thames to the Tower of London, and imprisoned there.

    Elizabeth had been implicated in Wyatt's Rebellion, a rebellion that sought to depose Queen Mary I and put Elizabeth, the queen's half-sister, on the throne in her place.

    Where was Elizabeth imprisoned? What happened to her? Find out more about Elizabeth's arrest and her time in the Tower of London in today's talk.

    Also on this day in Tudor history, 18th March 1496, Henry VIII's beloved sister, Mary Tudor, Queen of France, was born at Richmond Palace. Find out all about her in last year’s video:

    Book recommendation: "Elizabeth: Apprenticeship" by David Starkey.

    Link to read "The Miraculous Preservation...." - https://www.exclassics.com/foxe/foxe431.htm

    May 19 – Elizabeth’s release from the Tower:

    Also on this day in history:

    • 1496 – Death of Thomas Burgh, Baron Burgh, soldier and administrator. He was buried in the chantry chapel he had built in Gainsborough Parish Church. Burgh had served as an Esquire of the Body, Master of the Horse and Privy Councillor to Edward IV, and also served Henry VII as Knight of the Body and Privy Councillor.
    • 1539 – Death of Sir Robert Wingfield, diplomat, probably in Calais. He was laid to rest in St Nicholas Church, Calais. Wingfield served both Henry VII and Henry VIII as a diplomat, and was appointed Lord Deputy of Calais in 1526.
    • 1601 – Execution of Sir Christopher Blount, soldier, secret agent and rebel, after his involvement in the rebellion of Robert Devereux, Earl of Essex. He was executed at the Tower of London for high treason and buried there. Blount corresponded with Thomas Morgan, an exiled agent of Mary, Queen of Scots, in Paris, but as he was the Earl of Leicester's Master of the Horse at the time, it appears that he was working as an agent for Leicester and Sir Francis Walsingham. Blount married Leicester's widow, Lettice (née Knollys) in the spring of 1589.

    Transcript:

    On this day in Tudor history, 18th March 1554, Palm Sunday, the twenty-year-old Lady Elizabeth (the future Queen Elizabeth I) was escorted by barge from her home at Whitehall Palace along the River Thames to the Tower of London, and imprisoned there.

    The previous day, two of her half-sister Queen Mary I's councillors, William Paulet, Marquess of Winchester, and Robert Radcliffe, Earl of Sussex, had arrived on Elizabeth’s doorstep to arrest her for her alleged involvement in the recent Wyatt’s Rebellion. If you heard my talk from 17th March last year, you’ll know that this is when Elizabeth wrote what historian David Starkey calls “the letter of her life”, the aptly named Tide Letter, so-called because as Elizabeth wrote this letter to the queen, the tide turned, making it impossible for Elizabeth to be taken to the Tower that day. Unfortunately, the letter only gave Elizabeth a day. The queen was determined for Elizabeth to be arrested and interrogated.

    John Foxe, in his Book of Martyrs, includes a tract called “The miraculous preservation of the Lady Elizabeth, now Queen of England, from extreme calamity and danger of life; in the time of Queen Mary, her sister”, and here is an excerpt regarding Elizabeth’s apprehension:

    “about nine of the clock, these two returned again, declaring that it was time for her Grace to depart. She answered, ‘If there be no remedy, I must be contented;’ willing the lords to go on before. Being come forth into the garden, she did cast her eyes towards the window, thinking to have seen the queen, which she could not: whereat she said, she marvelled much what the nobility of the realm meant, which in that sort would suffer her to be led into captivity, the Lord knew whither, for she did not. In the mean time, commandment was given in all London, that every one should keep the church, and carry their palms, while in the mean season she might be conveyed without all recourse of people into the Tower.
    After all this, she took her barge with the two foresaid lords, three of the queen's gentlewomen, and three of her own, her gentleman-usher, and two of her grooms, lying and hovering upon the water a certain space, for that they could not shoot the bridge, the bargemen being very unwilling to shoot the same so soon as they did, because of the danger thereof: for the stern of the boat struck upon the ground, the fall was so big, and the water was so shallow, that the boat being under the bridge, there staid again awhile. At landing she first stayed, and denied to land at those stairs where all traitors and offenders customably used to land, neither well could she, unless she should go over her shoes. The lords were gone out of the boat before, and asked why she came not. One of the lords went back again to her, and brought word she would not come. Then said one of the lords, which shall be nameless, that she should not choose: and because it did then rain, he offered to her his cloak, which she, putting it back with her hand with a good dash, refused. So she coming out, having one foot upon the stair, said, ‘Here landeth as true a subject, being prisoner, as ever landed at these stairs; and before thee, O God! I speak it, having no other friends but thee alone.’ To whom the same lord answered again, that if it were so, it was the better for her.

    At her landing there was a great multitude of their servants and warders standing in their order. ‘What needed all this?’ said she. ‘It is the use,’ said some, ‘so to be, when any prisoner comes thither.’ ‘And if it be,’ quoth she, ‘for my cause, I beseech you that they may be dismissed.’ , Whereat the poor men kneeled down, and with one voice desired God to preserve her Grace; who the next day were released of their cold coats.
    After this, passing a little further, she sat down upon a cold stone, and there rested herself. To whom the lieutenant then being said, ‘Madam, you were best to come out of the rain; for you sit unwholesomely.’ She then replying, answered again, ‘It is better sitting here, than in a worse place; for God knoweth, I know not whither you will bring me.’ With that her gentleman-usher wept: she demanding of him what he meant so uncomfortably to use her, seeing she took him to be her comforter, and not to dismay her; especially for that she knew her truth to be such, that no man should have cause to weep for her. But forth she went into the prison.

    The doors were locked and bolted upon her, which did not a little discomfort and dismay her Grace: at what time she called to her gentlewoman for her book, desiring God not to suffer her to build her foundation upon the sands, but upon the rock, whereby all blasts of blustering weather should have no power against her. The doors being thus locked, and she close shut up, the lords had great conference how to keep ward and watch, every man declaring his own opinion in that behalf, agreeing straitly and circumspectly to keep her.”

    It’s a wonderfully descriptive account but we have to take it with a hefty pinch of salt though, for, as David Starkey points out, we know from other sources that Elizabeth was not taken through Traitors’ Gate, but instead was taken to Tower Wharf. The tract also goes on to state that Elizabeth was kept in a dungeon, and some books and websites state that she was imprisoned in the Bell Tower, but this just isn’t true. Elizabeth was confined in the royal palace in the inner ward of the Tower of London, the palace which had been renovated by her father, King Henry VIII, for her mother Anne Boleyn’s coronation in 1533. The royal apartments there served as Anne Boleyn’s prison in May 1536 and Elizabeth’s prison in 1554. So, not a cold, damp horrible dungeon or prison cell, and Elizabeth was attended by servants, BUT she was still a prisoner and was accused of being a traitor to the crown.

    On 23rd March 1554, Good Friday, Elizabeth was interrogated by the queen's council. Rebel leader Thomas Wyatt the Younger had refused to implicate Elizabeth in his plot during his interrogations, so the council were hoping that they could break Elizabeth and that she’d implicated herself. However, the princess kept her wits about her.

    At his execution on 11th April 1554, Wyatt gave a rousing speech proclaiming Elizabeth’s innocence. There was just no evidence against her. David Starkey writes of how Mary's council “bickered and debated” over what to do with Elizabeth and how Mary herself “dithered”. Mary may have seen Elizabeth as a threat, but Elizabeth was her half-sister and the daughter of Bluff King Hal. There may well have been trouble if Mary had executed her. Simon Renard, the imperial ambassador, recorded in a dispatch to the emperor that “even if there were evidence, they would not dare to proceed against her because her relative, the Admiral, has espoused her cause, and controls all the forces of England”. He was referring to William Howard, 1st Baron Howard of Effingham, who was Lord Admiral to Mary I but also Elizabeth’s uncle.

    With no evidence of treachery, Elizabeth was granted more freedom and, although still a prisoner, was permitted to walk in the palace's privy garden. The story in “The Miraculous Preservation” of a boy, the son of an officer of the Tower, bringing flowers to Elizabeth, and Elizabeth’s fellow prisoner, Edward Courtenay, Earl of Devon, trying to communicate with her through this boy, is actually true as it is confirmed in a report by Simon Renard, who reported to the emperor, “ It is proved that Courtenay has sent a child of five, the son of one of the soldiers in the Tower, to present his commendations to Elizabeth.” The Earl of Devon was, of course, the man that the rebels had apparently wanted Elizabeth to marry when they put her on the throne after deposing Mary I. Elizabeth was also permitted to walk in the great gallery and this extra freedom must have given Elizabeth hope that Mary was going to release her and spare her life.

    Elizabeth must have been stricken with fear though on 4th Mary when Sir Henry Bedingfield, Constable of the Tower of London, was ordered to raise a hundred troops. Were these men for crowd control at her execution. Fortunately for Elizabeth, the queen decided to release her into house arrest, and on 19th May 1554, the anniversary of her mother’s execution, Elizabeth was released from the Tower.

  • Informal live chat – 21 March – The Tudors on TV

    Apologies for the short notice, but things are a bit chaotic with the lockdown here in Spain. This month’s informal live chat will be taking place this Saturday, 21st March, and the topic is The Tudors on TV and in film. We’ll be discussing TV programmes, movies, documentaries, adaptations of Tudor novels etc. and do feel free to share recommendations or pose questions to other members.

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  • 17 March – Alexander Alesius and his terrifying vision of Anne Boleyn

    On this day in Tudor history, 17th March 1565, Scottish theologian and Reformer Alexander Alesius (also known as Ales, Aless), died in either Leipzig or Edinburgh.

    Alesius wrote a huge number of theological works, was friends with reformers Philip Melancthon and Thomas Cranmer, Archbishop of Canterbury, but had a row with the Bishop of London at one point.

    Let me tell you a bit more about Alexander Alesius and also a terrifying vision or nightmare he experience in the early hours of 19th May 1536, the day of Queen Anne Boleyn’s execution.

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  • 16 March – Richard Burbage, actor and friend of Shakespeare

    On this day in history, 16th March 1619, actor Richard Burbage was buried at St Leonard’s Church, Shoreditch.

    Burbage was a famous actor in the reigns of Queen Elizabeth I and King James I, peforming for royalty and even being in King James’ company of players. Burbage was also a good friend of William Shakespeare, and the two men were involved in the building of the famous Globe Theatre.

    Find out more about Richard Burbage, his life and career, in today’s talk.

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  • 15 March – Henry VIII uses foul language!

    On this day in Tudor history, 15th March 1532, King Henry VIII used what was described as “foul language” to William Warham, Archbishop of Canterburyt. Henry VIII also threatened the poor man, and it is amazing that Warham kept his head as the king was furious.

    What happened? Find out what Warham did to upset the king in today’s talk.

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  • Tudor Nobles and Titles Quiz

    Following on from this week’s Claire Chats talk on Tudor society, its hierarchy, the different classes, and the nobility in Tudor times, I thought I’d get your little grey cells working with a fun quiz on the topic. Good luck!

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  • 14 March – A man who served 4 monarchs and kept his head

    On this day in Tudor history, 14th March 1555, courtier, envoy and landowner, Sir John Russell, 1st Earl of Bedford, died at his London residence on the Strand aged around 70.

    Russell was an important Tudor man who served four Tudor monarchs – Henry VII, Henry VIII, Edward VI and Mary I – AND he managed to keep his head, dying a natural death at a good age.

    Find out more about this Earl of Bedford, his life, his rise and his career at the royal court, in today’s talk.

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  • 13 March – A young horse causes the death of an old earl

    On this day in Tudor history, 13th March 1540, sixty-eight-year-old Henry Bourchier, 2nd Earl of Essex, died after suffering a broken neck in a horse-riding accident. Chronicler Charles Wriothesley recorded: “the Earl of Essex, riding a young horse, by misfortune cast him and brake his neck at his place in Essex, which was great pity.”

    Henry Bourchier, 2nd Earl of Essex, was related to the royal family and served both Henry VII and Henry VIII. Find out more about this Tudor man in today’s talk.

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  • Tudor Nobility

    I’ve received a few questions recently about the structure of society and how the nobility worked in Tudor times, so I thought I’d do this Claire Chats talk on the topic.

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  • 12 March – The hidden remains of a treacherous monk

    On this day in Tudor history, 12th March 1537, Cistercian monk William Haydock of Whalley Abbey, Lancashire, was hanged for treason at Whalley.

    Haydock’s abbey had been implicated in the 1536 Pilgrimage of Grace Rebellion, so Henry VIII wanted the abbey punished. Find out more about Whalley Abbey’s part in the rebellion, how Haydock and several other monks were punished, and what exactly happened to William Haydock’s remains, in today’s talk.

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  • 11 March – William Warner, our English Homer

    On this day in history, 11th March 1609, Tudor poet and lawyer William Warner was buried at the Church of St John the Baptist at Great Amwell in Hertfordshire.

    Not many people today have heard of William Warner, but he was a well-respected and well-known poet in the Tudor era and even described as “our English Homer”. He is known for his huge poem, “Albion’s England, or, Historicall Map of the same Island”.

    Find out more about this poet in today’s talk.

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  • 10 March – John de Vere, 13th Earl of Oxford and his role in the Wars of the Roses

    On this day in Tudor history, 10th March 1513, magnate John de Vere, 13th Earl of Oxford, died at his home at Castle Hedingham in Essex.

    Oxford was a key figure in the Wars of the Roses and played an important role in the Battle of Bosworth Field. As I talk about his life and career, you’ll see just how complicated this civil war was.

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  • 9th March – Frances Radcliffe, Countess of Sussex, and her most rare gifts both of mind and body

    On this day in Tudor history, 9th March 1589, Lady Frances Radcliffe, Countess of Sussex, and wife of Sir Thomas Radcliffe, Lord Fitzwalter and 3rd Earl of Sussex, died at her home in Bermondsey.

    Frances is known for being the benefactor of Cambridge University’s Sidney Sussex College, but there is much more to her than that. Her enemies even turned her husband and Queen Elizabeth I against her at one point!

    Find out all about Frances Radcliffe (née Sidney) in today’s talk.

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  • The Dissolution of the Monasteries Crossword Puzzle

    How much do you know about King Henry VIII’s Dissolution of the Monasteries, something that had a major impact on the country’s landscape and the lives of the people?

    Find out with this fun crossword puzzle. Good luck!

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  • 7 March – The Great Comet

    This day in Tudor history, 7th March 1556, was one of the days on which the Great Comet, or the Comet of Charles V, was seen and recorded by Paul Fabricius, mathematician and physician at the court of Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor.

    Find out all about the Great Comet of 1556, what it looked like and how Emperor Charles V saw it as an ominous portent in today’s talk.

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  • 8 March – Henry VIII receives a leopard

    On this day in Tudor history, 8th March 1516, Sir John Wiltshire wrote to King Henry VIII from the English territory of Calais warning him that a couple of gifts were on their way to the king from the Duke of Ferrara. The gifts were a courser (a horse) and a "lebard" (a leopard or lion).

    Exotic animal gifts were all the rage in the medieval and Tudor period and were the reason why there was a royal menagerie at the Tower of London.

    Find out more about some of these animal gifts in today's talk.

    In my Questions about Anne Boleyn series, I’ve done a video on Did Anne Boleyn have any pets. Here it is:

    Also on this day in Tudor history, 8th March 1539, former royal favourite Sir Nicholas Carew was beheaded for treason at Tower Hill. Find out more about why he fell from grace in last year’s video:

    Also on this day in history:

    • 1495 – Birth of John of God (João Cidade) in Montemor-o-Novo, Portugal. He was one of Spain's leading religious figures and the order he created, the Brothers Hospitallers of St. John of God, still has bases around the world today.
    • 1542 – Burial of Geoffrey Blythe, clergyman, Treasurer of Lichfield, former Warden of King's Hall, Cambridge and former Archdeacon of Stafford. Blythe was one of the divines recorded by martyrologist John Foxe as preaching against Hugh Latimer at Cambridge. Blythe was buried at All Saints' Church in Cambridge.
    • 1569 – Death of Richard Tracy, evangelical reformer and cousin of Protestant martyr James Bainham, at his manor in Stanway, Gloucestershire. Tracy's works included “Profe and Declaration of thys Proposition: Fayth only iustifieth”, which was dedicated to Henry VIII, “‘A Supplycation to our most Soueraigne Lorde, Kynge Henry the Eyght” and “A Bryef and short Declaracyon made wherebye euery Chrysten Man may knowe what is a Sacrament”. In Elizabeth I's reign, he served as a Commissioner of the Peace and Sheriff in Gloucestershire.

    Transcript:

    On this day in Tudor history, 8th March 1516, Sir John Wiltshire wrote to King Henry VIII from the English territory of Calais.
    Now, it’s not an important letter, it’s just one I came across during my research and that I found interesting. In the letter, Wiltshire is giving the king advance warning of some gifts that are on their way to England and it’s the gifts that interest me. Wiltshire writes:
    “A gentleman of the Duke of Ferrara is coming with presents to Henry, a dark grey courser of Naples, and a ‘lebard,’ a marvellous dangerous beast to keep. "The keeper saith a will kill a buck or doe or roe and an hare, which is a marvellous thing if it be so.”
    I assume that the lebard is actually a leopard. A courser was a type of horse that was fast and strong, and had good endurance. They were often used by knights in battle.

    Although the letter appears in the archives for Henry VIII’s reign 1516. This gift is mentioned in the Venetian Archives for the year 1515. There are two mentions:
    “announced the arrival in London on the 18th March of an ambassador from the Marquis of Ferrara, by name Hironimo de Strozi; and in the said Duke's name he presented the King with a horse, said to be very handsome, and a live leopard. According to report, the King was much pleased with this present.”
    Then, the second mention:
    “Exhibited letters from his Duke Don Alfonso, announcing the return of the envoy sent by him to England with a horse and a live [leopard]. The envoy was much favoured by the King, who reciprocated the presents.”
    King Henry VIII seemed to like his horse and leopard!

    Antonio Frizzi, in his History of Ferrara, gave more details on these gifts, describing the horse as having gold trappings and stating that as well as the horse and the leopard, the duke sent three trained falcons.

    Why send a leopard? You might ask. Well, animals gifts, particularly exotic ones, were all the rage, and the duke obviously wanted to impress. The Tower of London’s website states that there was a royal menagerie at the Tower to house these animals gifts from the 1200s to 1835. It was started when Henry III was sent what was described as three leopards, but which might actually have been lions, in 1235 by Frederick II, Holy Roman Emperor. In 1252, the King of Norway sent a polar bear and in 1255 the King of France sent an elephant. Lions at the Tower gave their name to the Lion Tower, which is no longer standing. By the way, the polar bear was able to fish and swim in the River Thames, with a chain securing it, of course.

    Fast-forward to the Tudors, and as well as marmosets and monkeys being kept as pets by wealthy Tudors, including Catherine of Aragon, Henry VIII and Edward VI, visitors to the menagerie at the Tower in the 1540s recorded seeing lions, leopards, an eagle and a lynx, all belonging to the royal family. In 1592, a visitor saw six lions and lionesses, and “a lean, ugly wolf” kept by the queen. In 1598, there were three lionesses, a lion, a tiger, a lynx, a wolf, a porcupine and an eagle. Henry VII gave his wife, Elizabeth of York, a lion as a gift. I wonder what she thought of it.
    In 1826, 150 of the menagerie’s animals were rehomed at Regent’s Park, founding London Zoo, and the rest were rehomed when the menagerie closed in 1835.

  • 6 March – The Dissolution of the Monasteries

    On this day in Tudor history, 6th March 1536, King Henry VIII’s Dissolution of the Monasteries began when the “Act for the Suppression (or Dissolution) of the Lesser Monasteries” was introduced into the Reformation Parliament.

    The Dissolution of the Monasteries had a major impact on England and her people, but was of great benefit to the king, his nobles and the gentry. Find out what happened, why and its impact in this talk.

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  • Hampton Court Palace

    Philippa Brewell, our roving reporter, has been to Hampton Court Palace. This palace belonged to Thomas Wolsey, who then gave it to Henry VIII.

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  • Modern pictures in the style of Holbein

    We’re thrilled to be able to share this collection of paintings by Clinton Inman, a very talented artist who loves to paint in the style of Hans Holbein the Younger.

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  • 5 March – Tobacco comes to Europe

    On this day in Tudor history, 5th March 1558, Spanish physician Francisco Fernandes brought back live tobacco plants and seeds from Mexico to Europe.

    In today’s “On This Day in Tudor History”, I talk about the introduction of tobacco in Europe and how it was viewed as a cure-all, and how tobacco smoking became fashionable at Elizabeth I’s court.

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  • 4 March – William Bullokar and his 40-letter alphabet

    On this day in history, 4th March 1609, Tudor spelling reformer and grammarian William Bullokar died at Chichester in West Sussex.

    William Bullokar is known for writing the first grammar book of English, the “Pamphlet for Grammar”, and for his work reforming the alphabet to improve literacy. Find out more about him and what he did in today’s talk.

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  • John Donne (1572-1631)

    John Donne was born in 1572. His exact birth date is not known but is estimated to be between 24th January and 19th of June. He is remembered for his emotive poetry, religious writings and his skill as an orator.

    John Donne was born a Roman Catholic and was a direct descendent of Sir Thomas More’s sister. His mother was the niece of Thomas More and the youngest daughter of John Heywood, a playwright. His father was a prosperous merchant with Welsh ancestry who died when Donne was four years old. His mother remarried Dr John Syminges, who became stepfather to Donne and his siblings. Donne was an exceptionally well educated young man, attending Oxford University at the age of eleven in 1583, where he resided and studied for three years. He later attended Cambridge University where he continued further study. However, due to his Catholicism, he could not obtain a degree, as the religion was illegal under Elizabeth I. Donne also refused to swear the oath of allegiance to Elizabeth, which was also needed to graduate. Following his time at Cambridge, Donne was accepted into the Thavie’s Inn Legal School where he began the study of law. During this time, his brother Henry was arrested for harbouring a Catholic priest, and he died of the Bubonic Plague while in prison. It is thought that this event resulted in Donne questioning his faith.

    [Read More...]
  • 3 March – Edward IV’s son dies of a heart attack in the Tower of London

    On this day in Tudor history, 3rd March 1542, Arthur Plantagenet, Lord Lisle, courtier, soldier, diplomat, administrator and illegitimate son of Edward IV, died of a heart attack after being informed of his release from the Tower of London. How very sad!

    Find out all about Lord Lisle’s background, his career in Henry VII and Henry VIII’s reign, and how he came to imprisoned in the Tower of London, when he was probably innocent, in today’s talk.

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  • Want to visit the Mary Rose? EXCLUSIVE ENTRY

    It’s the 475th anniversary of the sinking of the Mary Rose on July 19th, and so we’ve been offered an exclusive entry and visit for a Tudor Society member – is it you?

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  • 2 March – Sir Thomas Bodley and the Bodleian Library

    On this day in Tudor history, 2nd March 1545, scholar, diplomat and founder of the Bodleian Library, Sir Thomas Bodley, was born in Exeter.

    Sir Thomas Bodley served as a diplomat in the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, but he is most known for his re-founding of Oxford University Library and the Bodleian Library, and all the work he did on it. Find out all about him and his library in today’s talk.

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  • 1 March – George Wishart, a man with close friends and bitter enemies

    On this day in Tudor history, 1st March 1546, Scottish evangelical preacher and martyr George Wishart was hanged and burned at St Andrews, Scotland.

    Wishart had been charged with 18 counts of heresy and although he answered each one he was condemned to death.

    Find out more about this Scottish preacher, what he was accused of and his sad end in today’s talk.

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