The Tudor Society
  • 13 February – Bess of Hardwick and the Executions of Catherine Howard and Jane Boleyn, Lady Rochford

    On this day in history, 13th February 1608, prominent Tudor noblewoman and one of the richest people in England, Elizabeth Talbot, Countess of Shrewsbury, more commonly known as Bess of Hardwick, died at her home at Hardwick.

    Bess of Hardwick is known for her building projects, which included Chatsworth and Hardwick Hall, her beautiful needlework and the fact that she and Shrewsbury were guardians of the captive Mary, Queen of Scots.

    Find out more about this fascinating Tudor lady in this talk…

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  • 9 February – An awful end for a bishop and Jane Boleyn, Lady Rochford, is taken to the Tower

    On this day in history, 9th February 1555, Protestant John Hooper, Bishop of Gloucester and Worcester, and former Cistercian monk, was burned at the stake for heresy in Gloucester.

    It was an awful execution due to green wood being used, and John Foxe writes of there being three attempts over a period of 45 minutes. Awful, just awful.

    Find our more in this talk…

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  • 21 January – Henry Howard’s madding time and the Act of Attainder against Catherine Howard and Jane Boleyn

    On the night of this day in Tudor history, 21st January 1543, Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey, Thomas Wyatt the Younger and several other youths went on a five-hour rampage in London.

    Surrey regretted his actions, calling that night “a madding time”, but the king and the privy council took it seriously.

    Find out what happened to Surrey and his fellow vandals in this talk…

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  • Mad people can be executed, a miscarriage of justice, problematic prophecies and William Waste All

    In this second part of This Week in Tudor History for week beginning 8th February, I talk about two parliamentary acts that allowed a king to execute his wife and to execute people showing signs of madness; a miscarriage of justice which led to a priest being executed in Elizabeth I’s reign; an Elizabethan astrologer who was ridiculed after his prophecies didn’t come true, and a man known as William Waste-all.

    11th February 1542 – King Henry VIII gave his assent “in absentia” to an act of attainder against his fifth wife, Catherine Howard, and her lady-in-waiting, Jane Boleyn, Lady Rochford. A bill allowing people showing signs of lunacy was also passed, an awful thing, but the king was determined to take revenge.

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  • 14 November – Bad Signs for Culpeper and Lady Rochford

    On this day in Tudor history, 14th November 1541, an inventory was taken of “the goods and chattels, lands and fees of” Thomas Culpeper, a groom of King Henry VIII’s privy chamber and a man who had been having secret meetings with Catherine Howard, Henry VIII’s fifth wife.

    An inventory had also been taken of the possessions of Jane Boleyn, Lady Rochford, wife of the late George Boleyn, a woman who had allegedly helped the queen meet with Culpeper.

    But what was going on in November 1541 and what was listed in these inventories?

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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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  • 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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  • Jane Boleyn, Viscountess Rochford

    Thank you to historian and author Conor Byrne for writing this article for us.

    Jane Parker was the daughter of Henry Parker, Baron Morley, and Alice St John. Her birth date is unknown, but her marriage took place in late 1524 or early 1525 when she would have been at least twelve years of age, the earliest age permitted for females to marry. Since she accompanied Katherine of Aragon as an attendant to the Field of Cloth of Gold in 1520, and appeared at a court masque two years later, it is probable that she was born no later than 1507 and probably by about 1505. Her highly educated father was a gentleman usher to Henry VIII. From her teenage years, Jane resided at court and lived in some luxury; her belongings included sleeves and apparel of rich fabrics, jewellery and plate.

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  • Exclusive report – The Parker Family Tomb

    St Giles Church Great Hallingbury

    Tudor Society member Dr Catherine Helm-Clark has just completed research on the Parker family tomb complex which can be found in Church of St. Giles in Great Hallingbury, Essex. The Parkers being the family of Jane Boleyn, Lady Rochford. With the help of Paul Walker, who went and photographed the tombs, Catherine has been able to transcribe and translate the tomb inscriptions. It’s amazing what she’s been able to do, and we are so grateful to her for sharing her research with us here at the Tudor Society.

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  • Jane Boleyn, Lady Rochford

    In today’s Claire Chats video I talk about Jane Boleyn, Lady Rochford, her life, her downfall and why Henry VIII had to change the law to execute her.

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