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The Tudor Society
  • #OTD in Tudor History – 11 February

    Portrait of Elizabeth of York

    On this day in Tudor history, 11th February, Elizabeth of York, queen consort of Henry VII was born in 1466 and died in 1503, and in 1531, Convocation granted Henry VIII the title of supreme head of the Church in England…

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  • May 17 – Five men are executed for sleeping with a queen

    Tower Hill memorial

    A photo of the Tower Hill memorial, the spot where many were executedOn this day in Tudor history, 17th May 1536, George Boleyn, Lord Rochford; Sir Henry Norris, groom of the stool; courtier Sir Francis Weston; courtier William Brereton, and musician Mark Smeaton were beheaded on Tower Hill for treason.

    The five men had all been condemned to death after being found guilty of sleeping with Queen Anne Boleyn and conspiring with her to kill her husband, King Henry VIII.

    Poet Sir Thomas Wyatt the Elder, who'd also been arrested and imprisoned in May 1536 in Anne's fall, witnessed their executions from his prison in the Bell Tower.

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  • May 15 – Henry VIII’s lack of sexual prowess is talked about in court!

    Richard Burton as Henry VIII in Anne of the Thousand Days

    On this day in Tudor history, 15th May 1536, the trials of Queen Anne Boleyn and her brother, George Boleyn, Lord Rochford, took place at the Tower of London.

    Unsurprisingly, they were both found guilty of committing incest and plotting to kill the king, and sentenced to death – see video below. But there was some humiliation for the king when George was handed a note about his sister talking to his wife, Jane Boleyn, Lady Rochford, about the king’s lack of sexual prowess.

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  • May 17 – Executions in 1521 and 1536, and the spy Anthony Bacon

    On this day in Tudor history, 17th May 1521, Edward Stafford, 3rd Duke of Buckingham, was executed for treason on Tower Hill.

    He’d served King Henry VII and King Henry VIII loyally for many years, so what led to this nobleman being condemned for high treason?

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  • May 15 – Two barons tried for treason, the trials of Queen Anne Boleyn and Lord Rochford, and a third marriage for Mary, Queen of Scots

    On this day in Tudor history, 15th May 1537, Thomas Darcy, 1st Baron Darcy de Darcy, and his cousin, John Hussey, 1st Baron Hussey of Sleaford, were tried for treason at Westminster after being implicated in the Pilgrimage of Grace rebellion.

    Both men may have been sympathetic to the rebel cause, but there was no actual evidence that they conspired against the king. Poor men!

    Find out more about them and how they ended up being branded rebels, and what happened next…

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  • May 2 – Mary, Queen of Scots escapes, and an Anabaptist is burnt

    On this day in Tudor history, 2nd May 1568, Mary, Queen of Scots, who had recently been forced to abdicate in favour of her son, King James VI, successfully escaped from Lochleven Castle.

    How did she end up a prisoner at Lochleven?

    How did she escape?

    And what happened next?

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  • April 23 – The birth and death of William Shakespeare, St George’s Day, and George Boleyn loses out

    Not only is today the anniversary of the traditional birthdate of William Shakespeare in 1564, but it is also the anniversary of his death in 1616!

    In this video, I share some facts about the Bard, along with a few phrases from his works that have become part of common parlance.

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  • 11 February – Success for George Boleyn and the birth and death of Elizabeth of York

    On this day in Tudor history, 11 February 1531, the ecclesiastical assembly known as convocation granted King Henry VIII the title of “singular protector, supreme lord, and even, so far as the law of Christ allows, supreme head of the English church and clergy”.

    The person responsible for persuading convocation to grant the king this title was Anne Boleyn’s brother, George Boleyn, Lord Rochford. It was a big responsibility for the young diplomat and courtier.

    Find out more about what happened in this talk…

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  • 11 November – Philippe de Chabot landed on English soil and Queen Catherine Howard is moved to Syon House

    On this day in Tudor history, 11th November 1534, Philippe de Chabot, Seigneur De Brion and Admiral of France, landed on English soil. The purpose of the diplomatic mission he was leading was to renew Anglo-French relations.

    George Boleyn, Lord Rochford, brother of Queen Anne Boleyn, had been put in charge of meeting the admiral and escorting him on his journey from the south coast to London, but it was no easy task. The admiral did not make things easy at all, and George was rather stressed about the situation.

    Find out what happened, and how and why the ambassador’s visit was bad news all round for the Boleyns, in this talk…

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  • 11 November – A stressed George Boleyn, Lord Rochford

    On this day in Tudor history, 11th November 1534, Philippe de Chabot, Seigneur De Brion and Admiral of France, landed on English soil. The purpose of the diplomatic mission he was leading was to renew Anglo-French relations.

    George Boleyn, Lord Rochford, brother of Queen Anne Boleyn, had been put in charge of meeting the admiral and escorting him on his journey from the south coast to London, but it was no easy task. The admiral did not make things easy at all, and George was rather stressed about the situation.

    Find out what happened, and how and why the ambassador’s visit was bad news all round for the Boleyns, in today’s talk.

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  • 23 April – George Boleyn loses out

    On this day in Tudor history, 23rd April 1536, St George’s Day, George Boleyn, Lord Rochford, lost to Nicholas Carew in the Order of the Garter elections.

    George Boleyn was, of course, the brother of Queen Anne Boleyn, so how did he lose, and was this a sign of the beginning of the end for the Boleyns?

    Find out what exactly happened in today’s talk.

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  • 11 February – Success for George Boleyn

    On this day in Tudor history, 11 February 1531, the ecclesiastical assembly known as convocation granted King Henry VIII the title of “singular protector, supreme lord, and even, so far as the law of Christ allows, supreme head of the English church and clergy”.

    The person responsible for persuading convocation to grant the king this title was Anne Boleyn’s brother, George Boleyn, Lord Rochford. It was a big responsibility for the young diplomat and courtier.

    Find out more about what happened in today’s talk.

    [Read More...]
  • Expert Talk – Thomas and George Boleyn – Lauren Mackay

    Our expert speaker for the month is Lauren Mackay who is speaking about Thomas Boleyn, father of Anne Boleyn, and George Boleyn, Anne’s brother. Lauren’s talk covers the lives, careers and downfall of both men – it’s a great talk and we learned lots!

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  • Hever Castle with Sarah Bryson

    Today in our regular Friday video spot, Sarah Bryson, author of Mary Boleyn in a Nutshell and Charles Brandon: The King’s Man, tells us about Hever Castle, the family home of the Boleyns, and shares her experience of visiting it recently. Thank you Sarah!

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  • The Offspring of Thomas and Elizabeth Boleyn by Conor Byrne

    The birth dates of the children born to Sir Thomas Boleyn and his wife Elizabeth Howard have caused considerable controversy among historians over the centuries. It is a fact that Elizabeth was delivered of two surviving daughters (Mary and Anne) and three sons (Thomas, Henry and George), only one of whom (George) survived to adulthood. Everything else is uncertain. Even the date of Thomas’s marriage to Elizabeth is not known. Only in 1538 were parish registers systematically introduced in which all weddings, baptisms and funerals were recorded.

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  • Clare Cherry Talk – George Boleyn

    Claire Ridgway interviews Clare Cherry about George Boleyn, brother of Anne Boleyn.

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