The Tudor Society

#OTD in Tudor history – 15 June

On this day in Tudor history, 15th June, Henry VIII's illegitimate son, Henry Fitzroy, was born; members of the king's council bullied and threatened Henry VIII's eldest daughter, Mary; and court fool William Somer died...

  • 1519 – Date traditionally given for the birth of Henry Fitzroy, 1st Duke of Richmond and Somerset, at the priory of St Lawrence in Blackmore, Essex. Fitzroy was the illegitimate son of King Henry VIII by his mistress, Elizabeth (Bessie Blount). Click here to read a bio of Henry Fitzroy or see below for a video.
  • 1536 - Henry VIII sent members of his council, led by Thomas Howard, 3rd Duke of Norfolk, to visit his daughter, the Lady Mary, and bully her into accepting her father as supreme head of the Church in England, and acknowledging that she was not the legitimate heir to the throne. See video below.
  • 1547 – Baptism of Peter Bales, calligrapher, schoolmaster and master of micrography, at St Michael Cornhill in London. His micrographical work included a hand-written Bible which could fit into a walnut shell and a ring, which he presented to Elizabeth I, containing a collection of devotional texts. Bales also wrote the copybook “The Writing Schoolemaster”.
  • 1559 – Death of William Somer (Sommers), court fool to Henry VIII, Edward VI and Mary I. Somer was buried at St Leonard, Shoreditch, London. See video below.

  • 1567 – Battle of Carberry Hill, near Edinburgh, between the Protestant nobles and the army of Mary, Queen of Scots and her husband, the Earl of Bothwell. Mary surrendered and was imprisoned. It was the end of her relationship with Bothwell.
  • 1596 – Death of Richard Fletcher, Bishop of London, at his house in Chelsea. He was buried in St Paul's. Fletcher fell out of favour with Elizabeth I and was temporarily suspended of his episcopal duties in 1595 after his marriage, which Elizabeth had warned against.

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#OTD in Tudor history – 15 June