The Tudor Society
  • #OTD in Tudor history – 17 March

    A portrait of a young Elizabeth I.

    On this day in Tudor history, 17th March, the Lady Elizabeth (Elizabeth I) delayed her arrest by writing her famous Tide Letter to her half-sister Mary I; theologian Alexander Alesius died in Edinburgh; and soldier and courtier William Herbert, 1st Earl of Pembroke, died at Hampton Court Palace…

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  • March 17 – Alexander Alesius’ terrifying vision of Anne Boleyn and Elizabeth I’s famous Tide Letter

    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.

    Find out more about Alexander Alesius and his terrifying vision or nightmare he experienced in the early hours of 19th May 1536, the day of Queen Anne Boleyn’s execution in this talk…

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  • Elizabeth I’s Tide Letter

    On 17th March 1554, two of Mary I’s councillors, Winchester and Sussex, were sent to escort Elizabeth, daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, to her prison at the Tower of London by water for her alleged involvement in Wyatt’s Rebellion. This was when Elizabeth wrote what David Starkey calls “the letter of her life”, the famous Tide Letter, so-called because as Elizabeth wrote this letter to her sister the tide turned, making it impossible to take Elizabeth to the Tower that day.

    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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