The Tudor Society
  • Monday Martyr – Thomas Abell (Abel)

    A carving of a bell with the letter A at the Beauchamp Tower, Tower of London, by Thomas Abell

    As yesterday was the anniversary of the martyrdom of Catholic Thomas Abell, on 30th July 1540, I thought he could be this week’s #MondayMartyr.

    Here are some facts about this Henrician martyr:

    – Thomas Abell’s birthdate is unknown but he’d been ordained as a Catholic priest by 1513.
    – He studied at the University of Oxford, attaining a BA in 1514 and an MA in 1518.
    – In 1522, Abell became rector at Great Berkhamsted in Hertfordshire…

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  • 30 July – Reformers and Catholics executed on the same day!

    What a confusing day it must have been for the citizens of London on 30th July 1540! For it was on this day in history, in the reign of King Henry VIII, that both Catholics and men of the reformed faith were executed in London. Crazy times indeed!

    Find out more about why Thomas Abell, Edward Powell and Richard Fetherston, and Robert Barnes, William Jerome and Thomas Garrard, were executed in today’s talk.

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  • Blessed Thomas Abel’s bell carving in the Beauchamp Tower

    As it is the anniversary of the execution of Catholic priest Thomas Abel (Abell) on 30th July 1540, I thought I’d share this photo that Tim took of a carving done by Thomas into the stone wall of the Beauchamp Tower during his imprisonment there. You can click on the picture to make it bigger. As you can see, it’s a rebus, i.e. a puzzle in which words are represented by pictures and letters – so we have “Thomas” then a picture of a bell with the letter “A” on it: Thomas Abell. It’s one of my favourite carvings in the Beauchamp Tower.

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