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The Tudor Society
  • July 31 – Henry Grey, father of Lady Jane Grey, is released from the Tower

    On this day in Tudor history, 31st July 1553, in the reign of Queen Mary I, Henry Grey, Duke of Suffolk, was “discharged out of the Tower by the Earle of Arundell and had the Quenes pardon.”

    Suffolk had been imprisoned after Mary I had overthrown his daughter, Queen Jane, or Lady Jane Grey, and been proclaimed queen on 19th July 1553. Suffolk’s release was down to his wife, Frances, interceding with her cousin the queen and begging for mercy.

    [Read More...]
  • July 18 – Kat Ashley, and Queen Jane is betrayed

    On this day in Tudor history, 18th July 1565, in the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, the queen’s close friend and loyal servant, Kat Ashley, died.

    Find out more about Kat (also known as Katherine Ashley, Katherine Astley and Katherine Champernowne) in this edition of #TudorHistoryShorts…

    [Read More...]
  • July 13 – Some of Queen Jane’s councillors begin to feel uneasy

    On this day in Tudor history, 13th July 1553, while the queen’s father-in-law, John Dudley, Duke of Northumberland, was preparing to leave London to apprehend the late Henry VIII’s daughter, Mary, members of Queen Jane’s royal council were meeting with the imperial ambassadors.

    What was the meeting about?

    What was the news from East Anglia?

    And why were the queen’s councillors beginning to feel uneasy?

    Let me explain…

    [Read More...]
  • July 12 – Mary rallies support while Queen Jane makes a mistake that will cost her dearly

    On this day in Tudor history, 12th July 1553, Mary (future Mary I), the half-sister of the late King Edward VI, moved from Kenninghall to Framlingham Castle. There, she set about rallying support for her claim to the throne.

    Lady Jane Grey, Mary’s cousin’s daughter, had been proclaimed queen on 10th July but Mary believed the crown was hers.

    Sir Thomas Cornwallis was able to intercept Mary on her journey to Framlingham and pledge his loyalty to her. He wasn’t the only one flocking to her cause.

    Meanwhile, back in London, the new queen, Queen Jane, made a serious mistake by refusing to send her father to go and apprehend Mary.

    Why was this a mistake?

    Find out what was going on back in 1553 in this video…

    [Read More...]
  • July 11 – Men swap sides in the succession crisis of 1553

    On this day in Tudor history, 11th July 1553, Sir Thomas Cornwallis, sheriff of Norfolk and Suffolk, Lord Thomas Wentworth, and some other prominent Suffolk gentlemen declared for Queen Jane (Lady Jane Grey) in Ipswich, Suffolk. They then publicly proclaimed her the rightful queen.

    However, the following day, Cornwallis recanted and proclaimed Mary as queen.

    Why?

    What happened to make this sheriff change his mind so soon?

    Find out more about the situation in July 1553 in this video…

    [Read More...]
  • July 8 – A rebellion begins, and Mary declares herself queen

    On this day in Tudor history, 8th July 1549, in the reign of King Edward VI, a rebellion began in East Anglia. It was Kett’s Rebellion.

    Find out more about Kett’s Rebellion, why it began, what happened next and what happened to the rebels leaders, in this short video:

    [Read More...]
  • July 1553 – The month of three monarchs

    July 1553 was a month of three Tudor monarchs – Edward VI, Queen Jane and Mary I – but how did this come about?

    In this talk, historian and author Claire Ridgway looks at what led to the events of July 1553 and particularly the actions that Mary took to stage her successful coup d’etat.

    [Read More...]
  • July 6 – The death of Edward VI and the accession of Queen Jane, Lady Jane Grey

    On this day in Tudor history, 6th July 1553, fifteen-year-old King Edward VI died at Greenwich Palace.

    His “devise for the succession” named his heir as Lady Jane Grey, the daughter of Edward’s cousin, Frances Grey (née Brandon), Duchess of Suffolk.

    [Read More...]
  • June 21 – Henry VIII goes to the Tower, and Lady Jane Grey is chosen as Edward VI’s successor

    On this day in Tudor history, 21st June 1509, the new king, the nearly 18-year-old Henry VIII, travelled from Greenwich to the Tower of London.

    Why was Henry VIII going to the Tower?

    [Read More...]
  • May 25 – Lady Jane Gret gets married in a triple wedding, and a Tudor earthquake

    On this day in Tudor history, 25th May 1553, Lady Jane Grey got married to Lord Guildford Dudley, son of John Dudley, Duke of Northumberland.

    They weren’t the only couple to get married in the ceremony at Durham House, Jane’s sister, Katherine, and Guildford’s sister, Catherine, also got married.

    Find out more…

    [Read More...]
  • 18 August – John Dudley and Virginia Dare

    On this day in Tudor history, 18th August 1553, less than a month after his daughter-in-law, Lady Jane Grey or Queen Jane, had been overthrown by Queen Mary I, John Dudley, Duke of Northumberland, was tried for treason at Westminster Hall in London.

    During his trial, Northumberland pointed out that it couldn’t be treason to be acting by royal warrant and that some of those judging him had acted under the same warrant, but it did him no good.

    Find out what happened at his trial, what his reaction was to his sentence, and what happened to William Parr, Marquess of Northampton, and John Dudley, Earl of Warwick, who were tried with him…

    [Read More...]
  • The Places and People of July 1553

    July 1553 was the month of three monarchs: King Edward VI, Queen Jane (Lady Jane Grey) and Mary I. It was a rather eventful month.

    But how much do you know about the places and people involved in this succession crisis? [Read More...]

  • 18 Interesting Facts about Lady Jane Grey (Queen Jane)

    In this latest edition in my “Facts about…” series, I share 18 interesting facts about Lady Jane Grey, or Queen Jane, who is also known as “The Nine Day Queen”.

    Find out more about the fourth Tudor monarch…

    [Read More...]
  • 25 May – Lady Jane Grey gets married

    On this day in Tudor history, 25th May 1553, in the reign of King Edward VI, Lady Jane Grey married Lord Guildford Dudley.

    The bride and groom were from prominent families, but there is the prevailing idea that this marriage was part of a plot by John Dudley, Duke of Northumberland.

    Find out more…

    [Read More...]
  • These Tudors Are Your Favourites

    A couple of weeks ago we asked our Instagram followers to vote on their favourite Tudor Monarch and wife of Henry VIII. We combined the votes with the most searched questions on Google and the country in which they are most popular. Here are the results!

    [Read More...]

  • This week in Tudor history Part 1 – A man who refused a title, Lady Jane Grey’s reprieve, and a naughty earl with a magic ring

    In this first part of “This Week in Tudor History”, I introduce a chap named John, one of the many johns in his family, who turned down a title; explain why Lady Jane Grey’s execution was postponed and what happened, and introduce an earl who appears to have been a bit of a Tudor bad boy.

    8th February 1545, in the reign of King Henry VIII – Death of courtier and soldier Sir John Arundell of Lanherne, or John Arundell III, a man who turned down a barony from King Henry VIII. Find out why.

    9th February 1554 – Queen Mary I postpones Lady Jane Grey’s scheduled execution and gives her a three-day reprieve…

    [Read More...]
  • 31 July – Henry Grey, father of Lady Jane Grey, is released from the Tower

    On this day in Tudor history, 31st July 1553, Henry Grey, Duke of Suffolk, was “discharged out of the Tower by the Earle of Arundell and had the Quenes pardon.”

    Suffolk had, of course, been imprisoned after Mary I had overthrown his daughter, Queen Jane, or Lady Jane Grey, and his release was down to his wife, Frances, interceding with the queen and begging for mercy.

    But who was Henry Grey and how did he go from being pardoned to being executed in 1554?

    Find out in today’s talk.

    [Read More...]
  • 21 July – The arrest of John Dudley

    On this day in Tudor history, 21st July, 1553, just days after he’d left London with an army to apprehend Mary, half-sister of the late king, Edward VI, John Dudley, Duke of Northumberland was arrested near Cambridge.

    But how and why did the man who had ruled England on Edward VI’s behalf, as Lord President of his privy council, come to this?

    I explain his role in the accession of Lady Jane Grey as Queen Jane in July 1553 and what happened when Mary overthrew Queen Jane.

    [Read More...]
  • The Summer of 3 Monarchs Crossword Puzzle

    The summer of 1553 was very eventful and saw three different Tudor monarchs rule England in just the month of July: King Edward VI, Queen Jane (Lady Jane Grey) and Queen Mary I.

    How much do you know about the events of summer 1553 and the struggle for the throne?

    Test those little grey cells with this week’s puzzle, a fun crossword puzzle. Simply click on the link or image below to open and print out. Good luck!

    [Read More...]
  • 18 July – Queen Jane is betrayed and Queen Mary wins

    On this day in Tudor history, 18th July 1553, while her father-in-law and his forces made their way from Cambridge to Bury St Edmunds to stand against the forces of Mary, and Jane was busy writing to men requesting them to muster forces to support her, Jane was being betrayed by members of her council.

    William Herbert, Earl of Pembroke, and Henry Fitzalan, Earl of Arundel, called a council meeting and Pembroke was even said to have threatened council members with a sword! They then proclaimed for Mary.

    Find out more about what happened on 18th and 19th July 1553 in today’s talk.

    [Read More...]
  • 13 July – Unease among Queen Jane’s councillors

    On this day in Tudor history, 13th July 1553, while John Dudley, Duke of Northumberland, was preparing to leave London to apprehend the late Henry VIII’s daughter, Mary, members of the new Queen Jane’s council were meeting with the imperial ambassadors.

    What was the meeting about? What was the news from East Anglia? And why were councillors beginning to feel uneasy?

    Find out what was going on in today’s talk.

    [Read More...]
  • 12 July – Men flock to Mary’s cause and Jane makes a mistake

    On this day in Tudor history, 12th July 1553, Mary (future Mary I) moved from Kenninghall to Framlingham and set about rallying support. Sir Thomas Cornwallis was able to intercept her on her journey and pledge his loyalty to her. He wasn’t the only one flocking to her cause.

    Meanwhile, back in London, the new queen, Queen Jane (Lady Jane Grey), made a serious mistake by refusing to send her father to go and apprehend Mary.

    Why was this a mistake?

    Find out what was going on back in 1553 in this talk.

    [Read More...]
  • 11 July – Men change sides from Queen Jane to Mary

    On this day in history, 11th July 1553, in Ipswich, Suffolk, Sir Thomas Cornwallis, sheriff of Norfolk and Suffolk, Lord Thomas Wentworth, and some other prominent Suffolk gentlemen declared for Queen Jane (Lady Jane Grey) and publicly proclaimed her the rightful queen. However, the following day, Cornwallis recanted and proclaimed Mary as queen.

    Why? What happened to make this sheriff change his mind so soon?

    Find out more about the situation in July 1553 in today’s talk.

    [Read More...]
  • 9 July – Mary wants to avoid bloodshed and vengeance

    On this day in Tudor history, 9th July 1553, three days after the death of her half-brother, King Edward VI, and the day after she’d proclaimed herself queen at her estate at Kenninghall, Mary (future Mary I), daughter of Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon, wrote to the late king’s privy council regarding “some evil” that she’d heard.

    But what was going on? What had Mary heard and what was she going to do about it?

    Find out more about the situation and Mary’s letter in today’s talk.

    [Read More...]
  • 21 June – Lady Jane Grey is Edward’s heir

    On this day in Tudor history, 21st June 1553, letters patent were issued stating that the dying King Edward VI’s heir was Lady Jane Grey, eldest daughter of the king’s cousin, Frances Grey (née Brandon), Duchess of Suffolk.

    Why was Lady Jane Grey his heir when Edward had two half-sisters, Mary and Elizabeth, and who else was listed in his “devise for the succession”. Find out more about Edward VI’s plan for the succession in today’s talk

    [Read More...]
  • 13 November – Lady Jane Grey is tried for treason

    On this day in Tudor history, 13th November 1553, in the reign of Queen Mary I, the former queen Jane, or Lady Jane Grey, was tried for treason at Guildhall in London. She wasn’t the only one tried, her husband Lord Guildford Dudley, his brothers Ambrose and Henry Dudley, and Thomas Cranmer, Archbishop of Canterbury, were also tried for treason for their parts in putting Jane on the throne.

    In today’s talk, I explain what happened at their trial and also what happened to these Tudor people after they were found guilty and condemned to death.

    [Read More...]
  • The Events of July 1553 Quiz

    July 1553 was a month of three monarchs: King Edward VI, Queen Jane (lady Jane Grey) and Queen Mary I – what a month for the citizens of London! It was definitely eventful. But how much do you know about the events that led from Edward’s death to Mary’s accession? Let me test your knowledge with this fun little quiz – good luck!

    [Read More...]
  • 19 July – Mary I is proclaimed queen

    On this day in Tudor history, 19th July 1553, the reign of Queen Jane (Lady Jane Grey) was brought to an end when Mary, the late King Edward VI’s half-sister, was officially proclaimed queen in London.

    In today’s talk,I share contemporary sources which tell us of how this news was celebrated in London. I also give brief details of another significant “on this day” event.

    [Read More...]
  • 15 July – The tide turns from Jane to Mary

    This day in Tudor history, 15th July 1553, was a key point in the events of summer 1553. For it was on this day that royal ships, ships that were supposed to be Queen Jane’s and who were guarding the coast off East Anglia to stop Mary fleeing England or any of her supporter invading England, swapped sides and gave declared for Queen Mary. Oh dear!

    I explain the context, the lead-up to this day, and also what happened to make the crews of these ships swap sides.

    [Read More...]
  • 8 July – Mary declares herself queen

    On this day in Tudor history, 8th July 1553, two days after her half-brother King Edward VI’s death and one day after hearing news of his death, Mary, daughter of King Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon, declared that she was Edward VI’s heir and so was queen – Queen Mary I.

    In today’s talk, I explain what had led Mary to this point and why Mary had fled London.

    [Read More...]