The Tudor Society
The Tudor Society
  • A Tudor gem that made me dance by Janet Wertman

    We have many historians as members of the Tudor Society, and we thought it would be interesting to ask them what they are researching or working on at the moment, and whether they've come across anything of interest from the Tudor Period. Janet Wertman has responded with this wonderful Tudor gem... over to Janet!

    What are you researching or working on at the moment? Can you share something of interest about the Tudor period?

    Your timing is perfect! I just stumbled upon a gem that made me dance.

    First, a bit of context.

    It will come as no surprise to anyone reading this that the Tudor world is full of wild parallels. Catherine of Aragon spending seven years at the start of her life (relatively) waiting for Henry to marry her, then seven years at the end of her life waiting for him to return to her. The fates of Henry’s wives (divorced-beheaded-died/divorced-beheaded-survived) intertwined with their “types” (foreign princess-Howard family-basic English). Cromwell’s downfall stemming from invented charges and using the Act of Attainder he had popularized. Just to name a few.

    I found one I had never noticed before.

    I am deep into the first draft of The Path to Somerset, the sequel to Jane the Quene that charts Edward Seymour’s rise to power after her death (during what I lovingly refer to as Henry’s “crazy years”). It is turning out to be far darker than I expected – at least the way the story is revealing itself to me – and I have to say, I am having a blast.

    Last week, I sank the Mary Rose (single handedly!). Gardiner was watching the battle with Henry from the shore in Portsmouth, they were right there as the pride of the country foundered (I use two points of view in a book; for Somerset I chose Edward and Gardiner/Protagonist and Antagonist – and Edward was off in Scotland at the time so Gardiner got to be the filter for the event). The scene was intense as it took them through the emotional devastation, the possibility of losing to the French, the fear that God had turned his face from them. But there was something about it that seemed just too pat, too predictable. I wanted a twist.

    I got a great one....

    Tell us about this "wild parallel"?

    The night before the planned French attack, Francis went to dine on his own flagship, the Carraquon, to send off his fleet. Being a king, he brought his own food and chef. The poor man was used to the royal kitchens, not the cramped quarters of a ship’s galley. He was careless with the galley fires, which is not something to do when you’re that close to so much gunpowder. The fire spread quickly and Francis and his family barely made it off the ship before it blew up spectacularly. They had to delay the attack a couple of days to create a new flagship…

    That detail changed everything. It allowed me to start the scene with English arrogance and overconfidence. After all, they had the Great Harry and the Mary Rose, the finest warships in the world, and hundreds of cannon whose fine construction was the envy of their enemies. And, of course, they smugly saw the hand of God in the destruction of the Carraquon– a sign that the Almighty was firmly on the English side. Playing up that attitude made the sudden reversal in the tragedy of the Mary Rose all that more poignant and terrible. It also gave my scene the oomph I was after …

    Janet Wertman is the author of Jane the Quene (The Seymour Saga), a fantastic novel about a fascinating Tudor queen.

  • The Princes in the Tower Live Chat – 11 November

    As today is the anniversary of the birth of Edward V, son of Edward IV and one of the Princes in the Tower, it seems fitting to announce that we’re holding one of our informal live chats on the Tudor Society chatroom on 11th November 2016 and it will be on the Princes in the Tower. It will be open to all full-access Tudor Society members.

    Olga Hughes, Tudor Life magazine regular contributor, and I will be moderating the chat and it will be 60 minutes of chatting about these boys and the theories regarding their fates. It’s your chance to have your say, pose questions or just lurk and ‘listen’ to others if you’d prefer. It will be fun and enlightening, I promise!

    [Read More...]
  • All About the “Tudor Life” Magazine


    Tudor Life is the Tudor Society's monthly digital magazine. Full access members have access to ALL of the back catalogue of magazines - going back to September 2014 - so you'll have loads to read when you join!

    Here are links to our magazines:

    Total number of articles in this category: 61

    We offer amazing value subscriptions - click here to find out more.

    Sample Magazine

    Here is a sample magazine from March 2016:

    Regular contributors include...

    MAGAZINE EDITOR - Gareth Russell

    Historian and author Gareth Russell studied History at Saint Peter's College, Oxford, and his masters at Queen's University, Belfast. He is the author of the 'Confessions of a Ci-Devant' historical blog and his modern novels and his historical research have both been profiled in THE SUNDAY TIMES, TATLER, THE IRISH NEWS, and THE HUFFINGTON POST. He has also appeared on BBC TV and radio, where he provided commentary on the birth of Prince George of Cambridge and where he will be interviewed again about royalty and the First World War for the 2014 centenary. His latest book is The Emperors: How Europe's Greatest Rulers Were Destroyed by World War I. He has recently founc great acclaim for his book "Young and Damned and Fair" about Catherine Howard.

    FOUNDER MEMBER - Claire Ridgway

    Claire September 2014Claire Ridgway is the author of the best-selling books On This Day in Tudor History, The Fall of Anne Boleyn: A Countdown, The Anne Boleyn Collection and The Anne Boleyn Collection II. Claire's latest release is George Boleyn: Tudor Poet, Courtier and Diplomat (co-written with Clare Cherry). Claire was also involved in the English translation and editing of Edmond Bapst's 19th century French biography of George Boleyn and Henry Howard, now available as Two Gentleman Poets at the Court of Henry VIII. She is also the creator of The Anne Boleyn Files website and founder of The Tudor Society.

    REGULAR BOOK REVIEWER - Charlie Fenton

    Charlie FentonCharlie is writing an Anne Boleyn novel, Perseverance, and started a blog and Facebook page called Through the Eyes of Anne Boleyn to document and share her research into Anne Boleyn's life. She is also a student and is currently studying Medieval History in college.

    Charlie writes monthly book reviews for Tudor Life, see Charlie on Books. These book reviews show what is good to read at the moment, what you should avoid, and who'd enjoy a book the most. We're all avid readers here and we love Charlie's reviews.

    Kyra Cornelius Kramer

    Kyra KramerKyra Cornelius Kramer, author of Blood Will Tell: A Medical Explanation for the Tyranny of Henry VIII, is a freelance academic with BS degrees in both biology and anthropology from the University of Kentucky, as well as a MA in medical anthropology from Southern Methodist University. She has written essays on the agency of the Female Gothic heroine and women's bodies as feminist texts in the works of Jennifer Crusie. She has also co-authored two works; one with Dr. Laura Vivanco on the way in which the bodies of romance heroes and heroines act as the sites of reinforcement of, and resistance to, enculturated sexualities and gender ideologies, and another with Dr. Catrina Banks Whitley on Henry VIII.

    Roland Hui

    Roland Hui received his degree in Art History from Concordia University in Canada. After completing his studies, he went on to work in Interpretive Media for California State Parks, The U.S. Forest Service, and The National Park Service.

    Roland has written for 'Renaissance Magazine' and 'Tudor Life Magazine'. He blogs about 16th century English art and personalities at 'Tudor Faces' ( and is the author of "The Turbulent Crown: The Story of the Tudor Queens"

    Conor Byrne

    Conor Byrne studied at the universities of Exeter and York. He is the author of Katherine Howard: A New History and Queenship in England, both published by MadeGlobal. Since 2012 he has run a historical blog and was formerly editor of Tudor Life Magazine. His research interests lie in late medieval and Tudor queenship.

    Conor is the author of two non-fiction books, "Katherine Howard: A New History" and "Queenship in England: 1308–1485 Gender and Power in the Late Middle Ages".

    Rioghnach O'Geraghty

    Rioghnach O'Geraghty takes your taste buds on an aromatic and fragrant journey through the culinary history of spic in an adventure through medieval Europe, Tudor England, Renaissance Italy and France. She writes a regular column about the foods, drinks and flavours of the Tudor period

    Debra Bayani

    Debra Bayani is a researcher and writer living in the Netherlands with her partner and children. She studied Fashion History and History of Art. Her first non-fiction book, a biography of Jasper Tudor, Duke of Bedford and Earl of Pembroke, was first published in August 2014 and it has been fully revised for re-publication in 2015. In 2018 Debra and artist Dmitry Yakhovsky created The Wars of the Roses Colouring Book.

    Debra is fascinated by all aspects of life in Medieval Britain and the Middle Ages and has spent years researching the period.

    Emma Elizabeth Taylor

    Emma Taylor works for costumes for television in her native Northern Ireland. She writes a regular column on her passion, the representation of the Tudors through modern media such as TV and film.

    Lauren Browne

    Lauren is currently studying at Queen’s University, Belfast, for her Ph. D. in early modern attitudes to queenship. She previously completed her undergraduate with a dissertation on Elizabeth of York and her postgraduate on Eleanor of Aquitaine. Lauren is originally from Northern Ireland, where she discovered her love for History and the arts. Her articles are wide ranging and detailed, taking in the whole range of personalities during the Tudor era.

    Toni Mount

    Toni is an all/round historian and author with wide ranging interests, but focusing on the lives of everyday people in the Medieval and Tudor eras. She is the author of many acclaimed non-fiction history books and has also found success with her medieval murder mystery novel series which starts with the book "The Colour of Poison".

    After many years of teaching history to adults several of my courses are now available online at the Tudor Society's sister website

    Each magazine comprises:

    • Featured articles from historians/authors
    • On this day in history...
    • Book reviews.
    • Feature sections on important people or events
    • Articles on Tudor history and life in Tudor times
    • Tudor personalities
    • Coffee break - Puzzle/Quiz/Crossword
    • History News
    • Feast days

    Guest historians, experts and authors who have been in our magazines include:

    • Adrianne Dillard
    • Alan Wybrow
    • Alison Sim
    • Amy Licence
    • Anne Barnhill
    • Beth von Staats
    • Bosworth Battlefield
    • Cassidy Cash
    • Charlie Fenton
    • Claire Ridgway
    • Clare Cherry
    • Clare Cherry
    • Conor Byrne
    • David Baldwin
    • David Collard
    • David Unwin
    • Debra Bayani
    • Derek Wilson
    • Dominic Pearce
    • Elizabeth Fremantle
    • Elizabeth Goldring
    • Elizabeth Norton
    • Gareth Russell
    • Heather Darsie
    • Heather Swaine
    • Hever Castle
    • J. Stephan Edwards
    • James Pierce
    • Jamie Adair
    • Jane Moulder
    • Janet Wertman
    • John Ashdown-Hill
    • Josephine Wilkinson
    • Kathryn Warner
    • Kathy Marcella
    • Kristie Dean
    • Kyra Kramer
    • Laura McCosker
    • Lauren Browne
    • Leanda de Lisle
    • Marilyn Roberts
    • Mickey Mayhew
    • Mike Ingram
    • Nancy Bilyeau
    • Natalie Grueninger
    • Nathen Amin
    • Olga Hughes
    • Peter Macinnis
    • Philip Roberts
    • Richard Rex
    • Robert Steadall
    • Robin Maxwell
    • Roland Hui
    • Ruth Cowden
    • Ruth Irwin
    • Ruth Stacey
    • Samantha Morris
    • Sandra Vasoli
    • Sarah George
    • Sarah Gristwood
    • Sarah Morris
    • Simon Anderson
    • Stephanie A. Mann
    • Susan Abernethy
    • Susan Bordo
    • Susan Higginbotham
    • Susan Sorek
    • Tamise Hills
    • Tara Ball
    • Teri Fitzgerald
    • Timothy J. Moots
    • Timothy Venning
    • Toni Mount
    • Tony Riches
    • Tracy Borman
    • Wendy Dunn

    and many more!

  • Calling all Tudor History Lovers!

    Are you a Tudor history lover? Then the Tudor Society is the site for you!

    The Tudor Society is an exclusive international membership club for all those who love Tudor history and who want to keep learning more and more.

    There are lots of historians and authors who are involved in the Tudor Society and who are sharing their expert knowledge with our members through the magazine and monthly expert talks.

    The Tudor Society

    • Gives you the chance to learn from Tudor history experts in the comfort of your own home, wherever you are in the world and without having to worry about time zone differences
    • Puts experts in your reach so you can ask your own questions
    • Gives you a wide range of Tudor authorities through the monthly digital magazine, forum, chatroom and monthly expert talks
    • Is targeted specifically at the Wars of the Roses and Tudor period
    • Gives you a monthly magazine which is Tudor focused.
    • Gives you many ways to learn and interact - listen, watch, read, chat and share
    • Offers monthly live online chats with experts
    • Helps you find the primary sources and books you need
    • Enables you to become quickly absorbed in the 15th and 16th centuries
    • Is fun - you can enjoy quizzes, videos, giveaways and chats
    • Helps you get to know other Tudor history lovers
    There will always be something for you to discover

    With your membership, you'll get these amazing ways to discover the Tudors...

    Monthly Online Magazine
    Professional magazine with exclusive content by historians and experts, edited by historian Gareth Russell.
    Yes, you get this!
    Monthly Expert Talks
    Hear from top Tudor authorities and then chat online with them
    Yes, you get this!
    Tudor Monarch Primary Sources
    Primary sources are an amazing way to discover the true Tudors
    Yes, you get this!
    Weekly videos
    Weekly videos and discussion from Claire Ridgway and other contributors
    Yes, you get this!
    Live Chatroom
    The most direct way to interact with fans and experts
    Yes, you get this!
    Fun Weekly Quizzes
    Test your knowledge and stretch your brain!
    Yes, you get this!
    Tudor Monarchs Book Series
    Download our exclusive ebooks on each of the Tudor monarchs
    Yes, you get this!
    Private Forum
    An active Tudor-based forum for you to explore history
    Yes, you get this!
    Regular Articles
    Regular online history articles from Claire Ridgway and other contributors.
    Yes, you get this!

    Contributors and Experts

    Regular magazine contributors include historian Gareth Russell, historian Toni Mount, author and art historian Roland Hui, historian Sarah-Beth Watkins, historian Susan Abernethy, food historian Rioghnach O’Geraghty, novelist Wendy J. Dunn, book reviewer Charlie Fenton and author Claire Ridgway. See All About the Tudor Life Magazine for more details.

    Speakers in the past have included historians and authors Derek Wilson, Jessie Childs, Toni Mount, Linda Porter, Janet Wertman, Robin Maxwell, C.W. Gortner, Nathen Amin, Matthew Lewis, Karen Bowman, Natalie Grueninger, Conor Byrne, Gareth Russell, Claire Ridgway, Sandra Vasoli, Elizabeth Norton, Wendy Dunn and Dr Elizabeth Goldring. See All About our Expert Talks for more details.

    Our weekly videos have included a wide range of Tudor topics - see All About our Regular Videos.

    The bonuses for ALL new members

    Your choice of a digital book

    Your choice of ebook
    You can never get enough books about the Tudor period, right? That's why we're giving you your choice of a digital book published by MadeGlobal Publishing.
    Pick from "The Anne Boleyn Collection", "The Anne Boleyn Collection II", "The Fall of Anne Boleyn", "On This Day in Tudor History", "George Boleyn: Tudor Poet, Courtier & Diplomat", "Two Gentleman Poets at the Court of Henry VIII" or if you're an author, how about "Interviews with Indie Authors"?
    And we know that there are many different ways to read digital books these days. So you can choose from a Kindle version (.mobi), Kobo and other reader versions (.epub) or even a version for your computer (.pdf). Whatever you want, and exclusively for you because you'll be a member of the Tudor Society. And we'll deliver your choice of book right to your inbox.

    A digital copy of "Illustrated Kings and Queens of England" by Claire Ridgway*

    As a Tudor fan, you've obviously got an interest in British Royalty. There have been so many interesting rulers of England, all the way from Ancient Britain with Aethelbert, Offa and Aethelred, through such greats as Richard the Lionheart and William the Conqueror. Then, of course, there are our beloved Tudor Monarchs in the 16th Century, and leading all the way through to the current monarch, Elizabeth II.
    The stunning book "Illustrated Kings and Queens of England" by Claire Ridgway has vintage illustrations of each of the kings and queens, lovingly restored and coloured. Each monarch also has a short biography. A simply fascinating book.

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    We do hope you'll consider joining. We can't wait to get to know you and chat with you on the site.

    Best Wishes,

    Claire and the Tudor Society Team