Queen Anne Boleyn at Hampton Court Palace

After Queen Anne Boleyn’s downfall in May 1536 King Henry VIII tried to have all trace of her existence removed from his court. He ordered carpenters and stonemasons to destroy every trace of her from his palaces. Although in the main this royal order was carried out there are two examples left at Hampton Court…

On The Brink of Disaster

It is a crisp and bright winter’s day and the King and most of the court are outside in the tiltyard enjoying the winter jousting. I would normally be in the stands to watch my husband take part in his favourite pastime, but today I am content to stay behind in my warm and cosy…

Queen Anne, Princess Elizabeth & A Difficult Question

I return from Mass this Sunday with a sense of gladness that I have not known for sometime. Nine days ago the Lord in his mercy finally freed England from suspicion and dishonesty by taking Katherine, Princess Dowager of Wales to his keeping. Although her sinful, lying and disobedient behaviour placed the peace of the…

Anne Boleyn & Singing of the Te Deum

The praising hymn Te Deum is traditionally used by English Monarchs to give thanks to God at moments of national celebration. There would have been many times in Anne Boleyn’s lifetime when she would have witnessed the singing of a Te Deum. Some of these occasions were actually in her honour as the Te Deum…

Anne Boleyn Confides Her Fears – March 1536

The harshness of winter is beginning to wane and the bloom of the first snowdrops on the palace grounds have given way to vibrant yellow daffodils. I sit on a beautifully embroidered cushion in a window seat of my privy chamber gazing out at the early morning dewdrops that cling to the new shoots of…

From Queen on Earth to a Queen in Heaven

On 19th May 1536 Anne Boleyn became the only Queen of England in history to be executed. She met her death by way of a sword wielded by an expert French swordsman. However what exactly was Anne’s regal status when she climbed the scaffold that day? The answer is that she was Queen of England….

The Myth of Anne’s Arrival at The Tower

On 2 of May 1536 Anne Boleyn, Queen of England was transported by barge down the Thames from Greenwich Palace to the Tower of London. She had been arrested and charged with having had a sexual relationship with Sir Henry Norris, Mark Smeaton and another unspecified man. In several accounts she is described as having…

A Royal Wedding

There seems little doubt from the primary sources that Henry VIII & Anne Boleyn were married in secret over the Holbein Gate at Whitehall on 25 January 1533. In separate accounts both Thomas Cranmer and Nicholas Harpsfield give details of the early morning ceremony, which was conducted by the King’s chaplin Mr Rowland, although Anne’s…

A Thwarted Romance

  In or around 1522/23 it was common knowledge within Queen Katherine’s chambers that her maid of honour Anne Boleyn and Lord Henry Percy, the heir to the Earl of Northumberland were romantically involved with one another.  George Cavendish who was at the time Cardinal Wolsey’s Gentleman Usher recorded later in his memories that…   ‘Lord…

A Fair Lady is Born

Between 3 and 4pm on the afternoon of Sunday 7 September 1533 in the 25th year of King Henry VIII’s reign Queen Anne Boleyn was delivered of a ‘fair lady’ ie daughter at the King’s Manor at Greenwich. Even though Eustace Chapuys the Spanish Ambassador was soon writing to his master Charles V that the…

A Palace Fit For A Prince

As we saw from last week’s blog by late August 1533 Queen Anne Boleyn had retreated to the seclusion of her chambers at Greenwich and was patiently awaiting the birth of her son. The arrival of King Henry’s son and heir would secure the peaceful sucession of the English throne and insure the continuance of…

Anne Boleyn, Hunter or Hunted?

People often ask; how did Anne, a Knight’s daughter manage to get the King of England to set aside his wife of 24 years radically changing the country’s religious governance in the process? Amongst other theories there are two main schools of thought in relation to Anne’s involvement with Henry. Either she is described as…