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The Tudor Society

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  • 22 January – Wyatt’s Rebellion is planned and execution of Edward Seymour

    On this day in Tudor history, 22nd January 1554, Thomas Wyatt the Younger met with fellow conspirators at his home of Allington Castle in Kent. The purpose of their meeting was to make final plans for their uprising against Queen Mary I and her decision to marry Philip of Spain.

    This rebellion would come to be known as Wyatt’s Rebellion, although the leader at the start appears to have been Sir James Croft.

    Find out all about Wyatt’s Rebellion and what happened in this talk…

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  • 22 January – Wyatt’s Rebellion is planned

    On this day in Tudor history, 22nd January 1554, Thomas Wyatt the Younger met with fellow conspirators at his home of Allington Castle in Kent. The purpose of their meeting was to make final plans for their uprising against Queen Mary I and her decision to marry Philip of Spain.

    This rebellion would come to be known as Wyatt’s Rebellion, although the leader at the start appears to have been Sir James Croft.

    Find out all about Wyatt’s Rebellion and what happened in this talk.

    [Read More...]
  • Wyatt’s Rebellion 1554 Crossword Puzzle

    Today’s Sunday fun is a crossword puzzle to test your knowledge of Wyatt’s Rebellion, which took place in January and February 1554. You can open and print the puzzle (and answer page) by clicking on the link or picture below.

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  • Are there any online primary sources for Wyatt’s Rebellion?

    Thank you to Georgia for asking this question: “I am unable to find any primary accounts of Wyatt’s Rebellion of 1554 – there are only secondary takes on the causes of the rebellion. I was just wondering if you had any links to a primary source that would be of assistance”.

    I (Claire Ridgway) will answer this question as I have a list of primary source from when I researched the rebellion in the past.

    “The Historie of Wyate’s Rebellion with the Order and Maner of Resisting the same” by John Proctor in “Tudor Tracts 1532-1588″…

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  • 22 January 1554 – The conspirators of Wyatt’s Rebellion meet

    On 22nd January 1554, Thomas Wyatt the Younger met with fellow conspirators at his home of Allington Castle in Kent to make final plans for their uprising against Mary I and her decision to marry Philip of Spain.

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  • 1 February 1554 – Mary I rallies London against Wyatt’s Rebellion

    On this day in 1554, Queen Mary I gave a rousing speech at the Guildhall to rally Londoners to her cause and to oppose Wyatt’s rebellion. Contemporary John Proctor recorded that Mary “did wonderfullye inamour the heartes of the hearers as it was a world to heare with what shoutes they exalted the honour and magnanimitie of Quene Mary”.

    Mary denounced Thomas Wyatt the Youngerand his rebels, but said that she had sent two of her privy council to “the traitour Wyat, desirous rather to quiete thys tumulte by mercie, then by iustice [justice] of the sworde to vanquishe.” She defended her plan to marry Philip of Spain as being beneficial to England, and affirmed:

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  • 26 January 1554 – Mary I warns Elizabeth of the danger of Wyatt’s Rebellion

    ary I became queen in 1553 and although the English people had been happy for her to become queen, some noblemen became worried about her plans to marry Philip II of Spain and the religious changes her reign was bringing. A group of men including Thomas Wyatt the Younger, Henry Grey (Duke of Suffolk and father of Lady Jane Grey), Sir Peter Carew, Sir Edward Rogers, Sir Edward Warner, Sir William Pickering, Sir Nicholas Throckmorton, Sir James Croft, Sir George Harper, Nicholas Arnold, William Thomas and William Winter decided that a military coup might be the only way to prevent Mary’s marriage and planned a series of uprisings with the aim of deposing Mary I and replacing her with her half-sister Elizabeth, who would marry Edward Courtenay, Earl of Devon.

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  • Wyatt’s Rebellion 1554

    On 22nd January 1554, Thomas Wyatt the Younger met with fellow conspirators at his home of Allington Castle in Kent to make final plans for their uprising against Mary I and her decision to marry Philip of Spain. This rebellion would become known as Wyatt’s Rebellion.

    [Read More...]
  • 22 January – Execution and Rebellion

    On 22nd January 1552, between 8 and 9 o’clock in the morning, Edward Seymour, Duke of Somerset, former Lord Protector and brother of the late Queen Jane Seymour, was executed on Tower Hill. He was laid to rest in the Chapel of St Peter ad Vincula at the Tower of London and records show that he was buried next to Queen Anne Boleyn in the chancel area.

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  • September 18 – The would-be king consort Edward Courtenay

    On this day in Tudor history, 18th September 1556, in the reign of Queen Mary I, Edward Courtenay, 1st Earl of Devon, died at Padua in Italy.

    Courtenay, who died from a fever, had been sent to the Continent after being implicated in Wyatt’s Rebellion. The 1554 rebellion sought to replace Queen Mary I with her half-sister, Elizabeth, who would marry Courtenay.

    Let me tell you more about Edward Courtenay, Earl of Devon, and how he was a prospective bridegroom for both of Henry VIII’s daughters…

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  • March 18 – Elizabeth I is arrested and The birth of Mary Tudor, Queen of France

    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 this talk…

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  • 4 January – A rebel keeps his head and William Roper

    On this day in Tudor history, 4th January 1575, in the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, courtier, diplomat and former rebel, Sir William Pickering, died at his home, Pickering House, in London.

    He died a wealthy man and died a natural death, a miraculous feat seeing as he was a friend of the Earl of Surrey and the Duke or Northumberland, both of whom ended up on the scaffold, AND he was one of the men involved in planning Wyatt’s Rebellion in 1554. Wyatt lost his head, but Pickering kept his.

    How? What happened? Find out more about Sir William Pickering in this talk…

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  • 18 September – Edward Courtenay and a triumphant Henry VIII

    On this day in Tudor history, 18th September 1556, Edward Courtenay, 1st Earl of Devon, died from a fever at Padua in Italy.

    Courtenay had been sent overseas after he was implicated in Wyatt’s Rebellion as a future husband and consort of Queen Mary I’s half-sister, Elizabeth, the future Queen Elizabeth I.

    In this video, I tell you more about this Earl of Devon and how he was a prospective bridegroom for both of Henry VIII’s daughters.

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  • 1 November – A baron with useful friends

    On this day in Tudor history, 1st November 1527, the feast of All Saints, William Brooke, 10th Baron Cobham, courtier and diplomat, was born.

    Cobham was a close friend of William Cecil, Baron Burghley and Elizabeth’s I’s chief advisor, so Cobham became powerful in Elizabeth’s reign, serving her in a number of important offices. And, this baron was able to escape charges of treason twice thanks to the influence of his friends and patrons.

    Find out more about Cobham’s life, career, and brushes with trouble, which included links with Wyatt’s Rebellion and the Ridolfi Plot, in today’s talk.

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  • 18 September – Edward Courtenay, a prospective king consort

    On this day in Tudor history, 18th September 1556, Edward Courtenay, 1st Earl of Devon, died from a fever at Padua in Italy.

    Courtenay had been sent overseas after he was implicated in Wyatt’s Rebellion as a future husband and consort of Queen Mary I’s half-sister, Elizabeth, the future Queen Elizabeth I.

    In today’s talk, I tell you more about this Earl of Devon and how he was a prospective bridegroom for both of Henry VIII’s daughters.

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  • 18 May – Rebel William Thomas comes to a bad end

    On this day in Tudor history, 18th May 1554, in the reign of Queen Mary I, scholar and administrator, William Thomas, was hanged, drawn and quartered at Tyburn for his alleged involvement in Wyatt’s Rebellion. It was said that he even wanted the queen assassinated.

    But William Thomas was far more than a rebel, he was also the author of the first he first Italian dictionary and book of grammar to be published in English.

    Find out more about him and his rather bad end in today’s talk.

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  • 4 January – A rebel keeps his head

    On this day in Tudor history, 4th January 1575, in the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, courtier, diplomat and former rebel, Sir William Pickering, died at his home, Pickering House, in London.

    He died a wealthy man and died a natural death, a miraculous feat seeing as he was a friend of the Earl of Surrey and the Duke or Northumberland, both of whom ended up on the scaffold, AND he was one of the men involved in planning Wyatt’s Rebellion in 1554. Wyatt lost his head, but Pickering kept his.

    How? What happened? Find out more about Sir William Pickering in today’s talk.

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  • 30 January – Cooling Castle is besieged

    In today’s “on this day in Tudor history” video, we go back to 1554 and to Wyatt’s Rebellion.

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  • This week in history 19 – 25 November

    19th November:

    1563 – Robert Sidney, 1st Earl of Leicester, courtier, patron of the arts and poet, was born at Penshurst in Kent. Sidney was the second son of Sir Henry Sidney and his wife, Mary (née Dudley), daughter of John Dudley, Duke of Northumberland. It was discovered that Robert was a poet, like his more famous brother Philip, when his notebook came to light in the library of Warwick Castle in the 1960s. The notebook contained a collection of over sixty sonnets, pastorals, songs and shorter pieces written in the 1590s.
    1564 – Death of Lord John Grey, youngest son of Thomas Grey, 2nd Marquis of Dorset and courtier. Grey was arrested with his brothers, Thomas and Henry (Duke of Suffolk and father of Lady Jane Grey), in 1554 for their involvement in Wyatt’s Rebellion. Thomas and Henry were executed, and although John was condemned to death, he was released and pardoned due to the intercession of his wife, Mary, sister of Anthony Browne, Viscount Montagu.
    1566 – Death of Reynold Corbet, member of Parliament and judge. He was buried at Stoke upon Tern in Shropshire. Corbet’s offices included recorder of Shrewsbury, Justice of the Peace for Shropshire, a member of the Council in the Marches and Puisne Justice of the Queen’s Bench.
    1584 – Death of William Bendlowes, member of Parliament, Serjeant-at-Law and Law Reporter. He was buried at Great Bardfield in Essex, where his monumental brass can still be seen today. Bendlowes reported on court cases from the period 1534-1579.
    1587 – Death of Henry Vaux, poet, Catholic recusant and priest harbourer, of consumption at Great Ashby, the home of his sister, Eleanor Brooksby. Vaux was sent to Marshalsea prison after being arrested in November 1586 for offering accommodation and assistance to Catholic priests. He was released in May 1587 due to ill health.
    1590 – Death of Thomas Godwin, physician and Bishop of Bath and Wells, at Wokingham in Berkshire, his birthplace. He had retired there due to ill health, and was buried in the local church. Elizabeth I chose Godwin as one of her Lent preachers, and he served in that post for eighteen years.
    1604 – Death of Richard Edes, Dean of Worcester, royal chaplain and court preacher, at Worcester. He was buried in Worcester Cathedral. Edes was a royal chaplain to Elizabeth I and James I, and had just been appointed to work on a new version of the English Bible when he died.

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  • The treatment of Mary Tudor (Mary I) Part 1

    I have very mixed feelings about Mary I, but I have to say that there is much to admire about her. Not only did she rally support against Wyatt’s Rebellion in 1554 and reign as the first official queen regnant; not only did she rally support for her claim to the throne in 1553, being prepared to give her life for it; but she also stood up to her father, King Henry VIII, and the bullies he got to do the king’s business, when she was just seventeen years old. She was a tough cookie.

    In today’s Claire Chats I talk about what happened to Mary from 1531 to 1534, what she went through.

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  • 17 April 1554 – Sir Nicholas Throckmorton’s acquittal and an arrested jury

    On this day in history, 17th April 1554, Sir Nicholas Throckmorton was tried for treason for his alleged involvement in Wyatt’s Rebellion, the rebellion led against Mary I by Sir Thomas Wyatt the Younger in early 1554. The indictment against him accused him of being “a principal, deviser, procurer and contriver of the late Rebellion” and said that “Wyatt was but his minister”, but he was acquitted. According to Stanford Lehmberg, his Oxford Dictionary of National Biography biographer, “Throckmorton gave a bravura display of eloquence and learning to run rings round his accusers” and “poured ridicule on the prosecutors’ attempts to find him guilty by association, and repeatedly caught them out on points of law”. The jury acquitted him but the jurors were arrested straight after the trial and Throckmorton remained in prison until January 1555.

    The chronicle of Queen Jane, and of two years of Queen Mary, and especially of the rebellion of Sir Thomas Wyat gives the following account of what happened on that day:

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  • This week in history 22 – 28 January

    22 January:

    1528 – Henry VIII and Francis I declared war on Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor.
    1552 – Former Lord Protector of England, Edward Seymour, Duke of Somerset, was executed by beheading on Tower Hill in London. He was laid to rest in the Chapel of St Peter ad Vincula at the Tower of London, and records show that he was buried next to Anne Boleyn in the chancel area. Click here to read more.
    1554 – Thomas Wyatt the Younger met with fellow conspirators at his home of Allington Castle in Kent to make final plans for their uprising (Wyatt’s Rebellion) against Mary I and her decision to marry Philip of Spain – click here to read more.
    1561 – Birth of Francis Bacon, Viscount St Alban, the Elizabethan Lord Chancellor, politician, philosopher, author and scientist, at York House in the Strand, London. Bacon is known as “the Father of the Scientific method” and developed an investigative method, the Baconian method, which he put forward in his book Novum Organum in 1620. Some people (Baconians) believe that Francis Bacon was the true author of William Shakespeare’s plays.
    1575 – Death of James Hamilton, 2nd Earl of Arran and Duke of Châtelherault, at Kinneil. Arran was appointed Regent for the infant Mary, Queen of Scots after James V’s death in 1542, but surrendered the regency to Mary’s mother, Mary of Guise in 1554.
    1613 – Death of Sir David Williams, Serjeant-at-Law in Elizabeth I’s reign and Puisne Justice of the King’s Bench in James I’s reign, from a fever at Kingston House, Kingston Bagpuize, Berkshire. His body was buried at St John’s Chapel, Brecon, and his entrails were buried at Kingston.

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  • This week in history 25 September – 1 October

    On this day in history…

    25th September:

    1513 – Vasco Núñez de Balboa, the Spanish explorer, reached the Pacific Ocean. He was the first European to have discovered the Pacific Ocean from the New World.
    1525 – Explorer, navigator and naval administrator Stephen Borough (Burrough) was born at Borough House, Northam Burrows, Northam in Devon, to Walter Borough and his wife Mary Dough.
    1534 – Death of Pope Clement VII in Rome from eating a death cap mushroom. He was laid to rest in Santa Maria sopra Minerva.
    1554 – Death of Richard Sampson, Bishop of Coventry and Lichfield, and former President of the Council of the Welsh Marches, at Eccleshall in Staffordshire. He was buried in the parish church at Eccleshall. Sampson had acted as the King’s Proctor at the fall of Anne Boleyn in 1536.
    1555 – The Peace of Augsburg, or Augsburg Settlement, was signed by Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor, and the princes of the Schmalkaldic League at Augsburg.
    1558 – Gertrude Courtenay, Marchioness of Exeter, made her will. She died soon after and was buried in Wimborne Minster, Dorset. Gertrude was the mother of Edward Courtenay, 1st Earl of Devon, who was imprisoned for his part in Wyatt’s Rebellion in 1554. Gertrude, herself, was imprisoned in 1538, and her husband was executed for treason.
    1584 – Death of Thomas Copley, Roman Catholic, in exile near Antwerp. He had served Elizabeth I as Commissioner of the Peace for Surrey, and she was godmother to his son, Henry, but he lost royal favour when he converted to Catholicism in 1563. He left England in 1570, being unable to accept royal supremacy and Elizabeth I’s religious measures.
    1586 – Mary, Queen of Scots was moved to Fotheringhay Castle in Northamptonshire, and Elizabeth finally backed down and agreed to the appointing of 36 commissioners to act as judges in her trial.
    1594 – Death of Gregory Fiennes, 10th Baron Dacre, at Chelsea. He was buried in Chelsea Old Church.
    1602 – Death of William Redman, Bishop of Norwich, at the Episcopal Palace. He was buried in the cathedral choir.

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  • This week in history 18 – 24 September

    On this day…

    18th September:

    1501 – Birth of Henry Stafford, 10th Baron Stafford, at Penshurst in Kent. He was the son of Edward Stafford, 3rd Duke of Buckingham, and his wife Eleanor (née Percy), daughter of Henry Percy, 4th Earl of Northumberland. Henry married Ursula Pole, daughter of Sir Richard Pole and Margaret Pole, Countess of Salisbury, in 1519, and the couple had around fourteen children. Stafford served Mary I as a Chamberlain of the Exchequer and Elizabeth I as a Lord Lieutenant of Staffordshire.
    1535 – Birth of Henry Brandon, son of Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk, and his wife Katherine (née Willoughby). Henry Brandon died on 14th July 1551, at the age of fifteen, from sweating sickness. His younger brother, Charles, survived him by just half an hour.
    1544 – Henry VIII rode triumphantly through the streets of Boulogne after the French surrendered, ending the Siege of Boulogne.
    1556 – Death of Edward Courtenay, 1st Earl of Devon, from a fever at Padua in Italy. He was buried there in the church of Sant’Antonio. Courtenay had been sent overseas after he was implicated in Wyatt’s Rebellion as a future husband and consort of Mary I’s half-sister, Elizabeth.
    1559 – The fifteen-year-old Francis II was crowned King of France at Rheims by the Cardinal of Lorraine, following the death of his father Henry II in July 1559 after a jousting accident. Mary, Queen of Scots was Francis’ consort.

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  • This week in history 4 – 10 September

    On this day in history…

    4th September:

    1504 – Birth of Antoine de Noailles, soldier and French diplomat at the English court in Mary I’s reign, at Château de la Fage.
    1539 – William, Duke of Cleves, signed the marriage treaty promising his sister, Anne of Cleves, in marriage to King Henry VIII. The Duke then sent the treaty to England, where it was ratified and concluded by early October.
    1550 – Death of Sir Thomas Paston, Gentleman of the Privy Chamber in the reigns of Henry VIII and Edward VI.
    1588 – Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester died at his lodge at Cornbury, near Woodstock in Oxfordshire.
    He had been ill for some time with a recurring stomach ailment, and so had decided to travel to Buxton to take the waters, but he died on the way.
    1590 – Death of Sir James Croft, Lord Deputy of Ireland, member of Parliament and conspirator. Croft was one of the leaders of Wyatt’s Rebellion in 1554, but although he was sentenced to death for treason, he was eventually released and pardoned. He served Elizabeth I as Comptroller of the Household, but was imprisoned briefly in her reign for negotiating with the Duke of Parma without permission. Croft was buried at Westminster Abbey, in the Chapel of St John the Evangelist.

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  • This week in history 17 – 23 April

    17th April:

    1534 – Sir Thomas More, Henry VIII’s Lord Chancellor, was sent to the Tower of London after refusing to swear the “Oath of Succession”.
    1554 – Sir Nicholas Throckmorton was acquitted of treason for being involved in Wyatt’s Rebellion. The jurors were arrested straight after the trial and Throckmorton remained in prison until January 1555.
    1554 – Thomas Wyatt the Younger’s head was stolen in the rejoicing after Throckmorton’s acquittal.

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  • 11 April 1554 – Sir Thomas Wyatt the Younger is executed

    On this day in history, 11th April 1554, Sir Thomas Wyatt the Younger was beheaded and then his body quartered for treason, for leading Wyatt’s Rebellion against Queen Mary I.

    Wyatt had already shown his opposition to Mary when he supported Lady Jane Grey’s claim to the throne after the death of Edward VI – he escaped punishment that time – but he felt compelled to act when he found out about Mary I’s plans to marry King Philip II of Spain.

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  • 18 March 1554 – Elizabeth is taken to the Tower

    On this day in history, 18th March 1554, Palm Sunday, the twenty-year-old Lady Elizabeth (future Elizabeth I) was taken to the Tower of London, the place where her mother had been imprisoned and where her mother and one of her stepmothers had been executed.

    We can only imagine the sheer terror she felt when Mary I’s council turned up at her doorstep on the 16th March 1554 to formally charge her with being involved in Wyatt’s Rebellion, the revolt which had taken place in January and February 1554 and which had been led by Sir Thomas Wyatt the Younger. Elizabeth was told that Mary wanted her sister taken to the Tower for questioning and that she would be escorted there the next day.

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  • Elizabeth I’s Tide Letter

    The Tide Letter was written by Lady Elizabeth (the future Elizabeth I) to Mary I when she was arrested after Wyatt’s Rebellion on 17th March 1554. Elizabeth wrote it when she was just about to be taken to the Tower of London for incarceration and it is called the Tide Letter because as Elizabeth wrote the letter the tide of the Tames turned and she could no longer be taken to the Tower by boat that day. She was taken to the Tower on 18th March, Palm Sunday.

    The letter was written in haste but Elizabeth still managed to write an eloquent and well-argued letter, which unfortunately went ignored by Mary. It did, however, delay her imprisonment by one day.

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  • 23 February 1554 – The Execution of Henry Grey, Duke of Suffolk

    On this day in history, 23rd February 1554, at nine o’clock in the morning, Henry Grey, Duke of Suffolk, was led out onto the scaffold on Tower Hill and beheaded. His daughter, Lady Jane Grey, or Queen Jane as I like to call her, had been executed eleven days earlier, along with her husband, Lord Guildford Dudley.

    Suffolk’s execution was down to his involvement in Wyatt’s Rebellion, a rebellion which sought to depose Mary I and replace her with her half-sister Elizabeth. The rebellion failed and Suffolk was arrested as he attempted to flee the country in disguise. He was tried for high treason on 17th February at Westminster Hall, having been charged with inciting war in the county of Leicester, posting proclamations against the Spanish marriage, and plotting the death of the queen. He was condemned to death.

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