The Tudor Society
  • 20 June – Anne of Cleves is cross about Catherine Howard

    On this day in Tudor history, 20th June 1540, Henry VIII’s fourth wife, Queen Anne of Cleves, complained to her advisor about her husband’s interest in one of her maids of honour, a certain Catherine Howard. What was going on and what happened next?

    Find out more about the final weeks of Henry VIII’s and Anne of Cleves’ marriage in today’s talk.

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  • 10 February – Catherine Howard goes to the Tower

    On this day in Tudor history, 10th February 1542, Catherine Howard, King Henry VIII’s fifth wife, was escorted by barge from Syon House, where she’d been kept since November 1541, to the Tower of London in preparation for her execution.

    Sadly, the queen would have seen the heads of her former lover, Francis Dereham, and her sweetheart, Thomas Culpeper, as she made her way to the Tower – a reminder of her own fate.

    Find out more in today’s talk.

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  • 17 January – Poet Thomas Wyatt is arrested

    On this day in Tudor history, 17th January 1541, courtier, diplomat and poet, Sir Thomas Wyatt the Elder, was arrested and sent to the Tower of London after being accused of corresponding with Cardinal Reginald Pole, and referring to the prospect of Henry VIII’s death.

    Wyatt was taken to the Tower and it looked like he’d be executed, but he was saved by Queen Catherine Howard, but at a huge cost.

    Find out more about what Wyatt was accused of, how he escaped execution and what he had to agree to, in today’s talk.

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  • December 20 – Catherine Howard’s stepgrandmother begs forgiveness from the king

    On this day in Tudor history, 20th December 1541, a “very sickly” Agnes Tilney, Dowager Duchess of Norfolk, begged King Henry VIII for forgiveness.

    The dowager duchess had been arrested and taken to the Tower accused of misprision of treason for hiding her stepgranddaughter Catherine Howard’s past relationship with Francis Dereham.

    In today’s talk, I share what the dowager duchess wrote to the king and also what happened to this sickly woman.

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  • 1 December – Thomas Culpeper and Francis Dereham found guilty

    On this day in Tudor history, 1st December 1541, Thomas Culpeper, a member of King Henry VIII’s privy chamber, and Francis Dereham, a secretary to Queen Catherine Howard, were tried for high treason at Guildhall, London. Both men had been linked romantically with the queen.

    They were both found guilty of treason and sentenced to be hanged, drawn and quartered.

    But what about Catherine Howard and her lady, Jane Boleyn, Lady Rochford, who had also been arrested. What was happening with them? Find out more about them, and the trial of Dereham and Culpeper, in today’s talk.

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  • 11 November – Queen Catherine Howard is moved to Syon House

    On this day in Tudor history, 11th November 1541, the feast of Martinmas, King Henry VIII’s council sent Archbishop Thomas Cranmer a letter containing instructions to move Queen Catherine Howard from Hampton Court Palace to Syon House, formerly Syon Abbey.

    In today’s talk, Claire Ridgway, founder of the Tudor Society, shares the instructions that Cranmer was given and what the queen was sent for her time at Syon. Claire also shares what else happened on this day in 1541, along with some trivia about the people in charge of Catherine’s household at Syon.

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  • 7 November – Queen Catherine Howard confesses

    On this day in Tudor history, Monday 7th November 1541, Thomas Cranmer, Archbishop of Canterbury, visited Catherine Howard, fifth wife of King Henry VIII, in her chambers at Hampton Court Palace.

    Catherine had been confined to her chambers and Archbishop Cranmer’s job was to get the now hysterical queen to talk, to confess. He visited her a few times over a period of 24 hours and finally got a confession from her. But what did Catherine have to say?

    Find out all about Catherine Howard’s confessions, and there were several, in today’s talk.

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  • 6 November – Henry VIII abandons Catherine Howard

    On this day in Tudor history, Sunday 6th November 1541, Catherine Howard, Henry VIII’s fifth wife, was abandoned by her husband the king at Hampton Court Palace. She would never see him again.

    On the same day, Queen Catherine was visited by a delegation of king’s council members and informed of allegations made against her.

    What exactly happened on this day in 1541 and what has this to do with Hampton Court Palace’s ‘Haunted Gallery’? Find out in today’s talk.

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  • 2 November – The beginning of the end for Catherine Howard

    On this day in Tudor history, 2nd November 1541, All Souls’ Day, Archbishop Thomas Cranmer gave King Henry VIII a letter that would spark off the beginning of the end for Queen Catherine Howard, Henry VIII’s fifth wife.

    Catherine Howard’s past, her romances with Henry Manox and Francis Dereham, were about to come back to haunt her, and her present relationship with Thomas Culpeper would soon be uncovered.

    In today’s talk, I explain exactly what was in Archbishop Cranmer’s letter and what happened next.

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  • 28 July – Fifth time lucky for Henry VIII?

    On this day in Tudor history 28th July 1540, King Henry VIII tried his luck for a fifth time and married his former wife’s maid of honour, the young Catherine Howard. Surely, she was the one!

    In today’s “on this day” talk, I share records of this marriage and also mentions another event that took place on the very same day – an execution.

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  • 30 June – Henry VIII and Catherine Howard’s ill-fated northern progress

    Things seemed all peachy as King Henry VIII and his fifth wife, Queen Catherine Howard, set off on their progress to the north of England on this day in Tudor history, 30th June 1541. Little did the king know that he’d be stood up by his nephew and that his world would come crashing down on him on his return.

    In today’s video, I explain the motives behind this huge undertaking, what happened on the progress, and why Henry’s life changed so dramatically when he got back.

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  • 5 May – A pardon for Queen Catherine Howard’s stepgrandmother

    On this day in Tudor history, 5th May 1542, just under three months after the execution of her stepgranddaughter, Queen Catherine Howard, Agnes Tilney, Dowager Duchess of Norfolk, was pardoned and released from the Tower of London.

    Find out how the dowager duchess ended up in the Tower in today’s video.

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  • 13 February – The Executions of Catherine Howard and Jane Boleyn, Lady Rochford

    On this day in Tudor history, 13th February 1542, Catherine Howard, the former queen and fifth wife of King Henry VIII, and her lady-in-waiting, Jane Boleyn, Lady Rochford, were executed at the Tower of London.

    In today’s “on this day” video,I look at the accounts of their executions, including the one where Catherine Howard says “I die a Queen, but I would rather die the wife of Culpeper.” Did Catherine say that and did Jane Boleyn use her scaffold speech to repent of bringing down Anne Boleyn and George Boleyn in 1536? I relate what happened on 13 February 1542 and what these women said on the scaffold.

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  • 9 February – Jane Boleyn, Lady Rochford, is taken to the Tower

    On this day in Tudor history, 9th February 1542, Jane Boleyn, Lady Rochford, was rowed to the Tower of London in preparation for her forthcoming execution. In today’s video, I explain why she wasn’t already at the Tower and where she’d been between her arrest in November 1541 and this day in 1542.

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  • 21 January

    In today’s “on this day in Tudor history” video, I talk about the Act of Attainder which was used against Catherine and her lady, Jane Boleyn, Lady Rochford, in 1542.

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  • Expert Talk – Gareth Russell – Catherine Howard: Personality and Private Life

    To celebrate our Tudor Society open weekend, we have a special bonus expert talk this month from historian Gareth Russell, author of “Young and Damned and Fair: The Life and Tragedy of Catherine Howard, Fifth Wife of King Henry VIII”.

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  • Lord Edward Howard (c.1478-1539)

    Lord Edmund Howard was born in around 1478 as the third son of Thomas Howard, 2nd Duke of Norfolk, and his first wife, Elizabeth Tilney, Countess of Surrey. Edmund came from a successful family; his father having served under four monarchs. During the tumultuous Wars of the Roses period, Edmund’s father supported the Yorkists, serving both Edward IV and Richard III. Thomas Howard was awarded the Earldom of Surrey in 1483, alongside being appointed to the Privy Council and becoming an invested member of the exclusive Order of the Garter. Upon Richard III’s defeat at the Battle of Bosworth in 1485, the Earl of Surrey was imprisoned for a period and stripped of his honours as a result of his treasonous actions against the newly established Tudor throne. The now King Henry VII was discerning in his prevention of Surrey’s execution; intent on proving himself a merciful monarch in the wake of decades of factional brutality. Henry was later reassured that Surrey was a loyal servant and restored his earldom in May 1489. Similarly, the earl regained his position in society, taking up the role of Lieutenant of the North until 1499. From this point onwards, Surrey became a valued, trusted and loyal man to the Tudor crown; with his forces decimating the Scottish forces at Flodden in 1513. A year later, he was granted the title of Duke of Norfolk, one of England’s preeminent titles; which came with significant lands and annuities. When the duke died in 1524, his funeral was attended by a significant number of exclusive guests who congregated at Framingham Castle to pay their respects to a hugely influential figure at the Henrician court.

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  • Thomas Cromwell and Catherine Howard Resources

    As today is the anniversary of the execution of Thomas Cromwell and the marriage of Henry VIII and Catherine Howard on 28th July 1540, I thought I’d share with you some Thomas Cromwell and Catherine Howard resources as we have plenty of videos, talks, quizzes and articles on these two famous Tudor personalities.

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  • March 2018 – Tudor Life – The Howards

    Here is the full version of our 68-page March edition of Tudor Life Magazine. This month we have articles about the Howard family, a family who were very influential and who even produced two queens.

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  • Was Catherine Howard guilty of treason?

    As this week has been the anniversary of the execution of Catherine Howard, I thought I’d look at the bill of attainder against her and also whether she was guilty of high treason.

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  • Livechat with Gareth Russell about the Howards

    Here’s the transcript of our wonderful live chat with Gareth Russell, all about the Howard family. It was fast paced and very informative. Thanks to all who came along, and huge congratulations to Elizabeth, who won a copy of Gareth’s book!

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  • Katherine Howard

    Like her cousin Anne Boleyn, Katherine Howard was a granddaughter of Thomas Howard, 2nd Duke of Norfolk, and a niece of the third duke. She was born in about 1523, probably at Lambeth, to Edmund and Jocasta Howard. During her infancy, Katherine’s mother died and her father, who seems to have been both irresponsible and financially straitened, remarried twice. In 1531, when she was about eight years old, she departed for the household of her step-grandmother, Agnes, Dowager Duchess of Norfolk, at Cheshunt. The dowager duchess, who was one of the premier noblewomen in England, also kept a household at Norfolk House in London and regularly resided at court. Her periods of absence prevented her from supervising her household as closely as she might have liked.

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  • Transcript from Gareth Russell’s Live Chat

    Thanks to all full members who joined us at the live chat with Gareth Russell at the end of April.

    Here is the transcript of the chat we had for those members who missed it:
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  • Live chat with Gareth Russell – 29 April

    Just to let you know that this month’s expert live chat will be taking place on 29th April at 11pm UK time

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  • Expert Talk: Gareth Russell on Catherine Howard

    This month we have Gareth Russell, who is in the middle of a book tour of the USA as I write this post. He’s recorded us a wonderful talk about Catherine Howard, the fifth wife of Henry VIII.

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  • April 2017 Tudor Life Taster

    Why not have a read through this online taster of this magazine which this month focuses on Catherine Howard and Katherine Parr, then join up…

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  • April 2017 Tudor Life Magazine

    The full edition of our 68-page April edition of Tudor Life Magazine. The theme this month is two of Henry VIII’s fascinating wives, Catherine Howard & Katherine Parr

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  • Two great books

    In this week’s Claire Chats, I share two books that I’ve been sent…

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  • Katherine Howard Quiz

    Our quiz maestro Rebecca Larson is testing your knowledge on Queen Katherine Howard this week. Enjoy and good luck!

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  • May 2016 Tudor Life Magazine

    May’s magazine is a celebration of the arrival of Summer … let the merriment begin!

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