[Guest Post] Anne Boleyn: “Loved not a little” – Lily Fox

Time marches on. Even ten, twenty years ago seems an inexplicably long time away, an ancient era before Whatsapp, Harry Potter, selfies and One Direction. The Tudor period is practically another world, a fantasy time of knights and castles that belongs more to a Game of Thrones episode than real life. A lot of things […]

What If..? (#04: Lady Jane Grey had kept the throne)

Part of a new series on revisionist history, speculating on tiny changes in British history that could cause a ‘butterfly effect’. In June 1553, the boy-king Edward lay dying. Unable to legitimise his Protestant half-sister Elizabeth without doing the same to his Catholic one, Mary, Edward subverted the will of his late father, Henry VIII, […]

I will persevere

Here’s a picture of my handmade polymer clay “chibi” Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn; I bought them to sit serenely on my desk, inspiring me as I finish Perseverance, my novella that traces their ‘love story’. I think Chibi Henry and Anne will perhaps get a little impatient with me, as a change in professional circumstances […]

“There is written, her fair neck round about”: The legend of Anne Boleyn’s initial necklaces

To say it’s archetypal isn’t actually doing it justice. It’s flat-out impossible to envision Anne Boleyn without her pearl-and-gold “B” necklace – a fact that filmmakers and book cover designers seem to agree with. Although the fashionable Anne was usually a trend-setter, initial jewellery was already extremely popular at the Tudor court. Henry VIII himself […]

“I like her not!” The dumping of Anne of Cleves

    On this day (9th July) in 1540, the marriage between Henry VIII of England and Anna, the elder Princess of Cleves, was formally and legally annulled. Anne has gone down through history as the one who made the great escape, as well as a lot of other things much less flattering. So today, […]

I have come here to die

Today in History: 19th May 1536 – the execution of Anne Boleyn Escorted by Sir William Kingston, Constable of the Tower of London, and “four young ladies”, Anne Boleyn made the short walk from the Queen’s Lodgings at the Tower of London, skirting past the Great Hall, through Cole Harbour Gate to reach the western […]

The condemnation of the putain

Today in History: 15th May 1536 – the trial of Anne Boleyn On the morning of 15th May 1536, Jane Seymour – affianced to the King of England – busied herself with wedding preparations from her new lodgings in Chelsea. Her predecessor – although not yet quite ‘pre’ enough for Henry’s taste – prepared herself […]

Hoping shortly to receive you in these arms

In May 1536 the court – perhaps even the whole of London – was uneasy and twitchy. Their Queen was imprisoned in the Tower, accused of fearful things, her trial set for the 15th of May. Things were never to be as they were before. King Henry – one way or another – was going […]

Eltham Palace

As originally hosted here, at The Tudor Cafe. Eltham Palace, in Greenwich, South East London, was the childhood home of Henry VIII, his sisters and younger brother. Sadly, the original medieval house is all but gone, the current building dating from the 1930s. The impressive, timber-roofed Great Hall – built by Edward IV in the […]

From the Lady in the Tower: 6th May 1536

Today in History: 6th May 1536 On this day in 1536, tradition holds that Anne Boleyn wrote her husband a desperate letter. In a state of limbo – her trial was not to be held until May 15th – perhaps she thought that she could still stop the tide, secure her daughter’s legitimacy, her brother’s […]