The Badge of Anne Boleyn

Anne Boleyn’s badge of a crowned falcon upon a wood stump sprouting Tudor roses is quite famous, but what exactly does it mean? There is a great deal of symbolism embedded within the badge and it seems that each part was carefully chosen to signify something of importance.

Anne Boleyn Badge

Falcon

In short the white falcon was adopted by Anne Boleyn as her badge sometime before or when her marriage to Henry VIII was announced. Eric Ives in his book ‘The Life and Death of Anne Boleyn’ suggests that she may have taken this bird from the heraldic crest of the Butlers which Anne’s father Thomas Boleyn was officially recognised as the heir. Claire Ridgway from ‘The Anne Boleyn Files’ also adds the significance of the falcon in Egyptian culture as majestic, powerful and of someone’s eagerness to set about the task at hand.

Tree Stump/Red and White Roses

Ives suggests that the tree stump with red and white roses bursting forth represents Henry VIII’s right to the throne, the white roses stating is claim to the Yorkist line through his mother and the red roses emphasising his right to the Lancastrian line through his father. The flowers bursting forth and the falcon landing on the stump may also represent Anne’s ability and willingness to bring new life to the Tudor line.

Crown and Sceptre

The crown and the sceptre in the crest not only represent Anne as Queen but also that her husband Henry VIII had authority within his Kingdom, authority to even reject the Pope in Rome and this authority was given to him from God.

All of these elements combined: the white falcon, the tree stump, the red and white roses and the crown and sceptre meld wonderfully together. The crest signifies Anne’s status as Queen and her willingness and her determination to not only act as Queen but to also bring a son (hopefully many sons) to further the Tudor lineage.; as well as emphasising her husband’s power and authority within the Kingdom.

Sources:

Ives, E 2009, The Life and Death of Anne Boleyn, Blackwell Publishing, Oxford.

Grueninger, N 2010, Anne Boleyn Badges, Symbolism & Mottoes, viewed 5 August 2017, <http://onthetudortrail.com/Blog/anne-boleyn/anne-boleyns-falcon-badge/&gt;.

 

Thomas Wriothesley

Thomas Wriothesley (pronounced Riz-lee) was a prominent member of court during the reign of King Henry VIII and his son King Edward VI. Born on the 21st of December 1505, Thomas was the first child and oldest son of William Wriothesley and Agnes, daughter of James Drayton. The couple would go on to have three more children, daughters Elizabeth and Anne born in 1507 and 1508 respectively and a second son, Edward born in 1509.

Wriothesley was educated at St Paul’s School, London before he went to Trinity Hall, Cambridge in around 1522. One of his teachers was the famous Stephen Gardiner, Bishop of Winchester who would play a large role in the religious discussions of Henry VIII’s later years. His fellow students reported that Wriothesley was intelligent, had integrity of mind and was very handsome.

However Wriothesley never obtained his degree from Cambridge, instead he went on to forge a prosperous career in the court of Henry VIII. In 1524, when he was just nineteen years of age, Wriothesley was hired by Thomas Cromwell; another man who would become a prominent member of the King’s council in the 1530’s. Six years later Wriothesley was recorded as being the King’s messenger and then on May 4th of the same year he was appointed joint clerk of the signet under his old tutor Stephen Gardiner, who was at this time the King’s secretary. Clearly Wriothesley’s position was on the rise and he had a reputation at being efficient at his job.

Wriothesley and Gardiner had a good working relationship and Wriothesley was also close friends with Gardiner’s nephew Germayne, yet despite this the two did not always see eye to eye. Gardiner, Bishop of Winchester was a devout Catholic while Wriothesley was, at least on the surface, a reformer and strongly supported Henry VIII’s spiritual reform and changes to the Church. In addition to this in 1538 Wriothesley provided Thomas Cromwell with information about Gardiner’s household in order to discredit the Bishop. From this point onwards the relationship between Gardiner and Wriothesley became strained.

Wriothesley was also trusted to carry important messages overseas and he was dispatched to Brussels in December 1532, on what could have possibly been business relating to Henry VIII’s “Great Matter” – the annulment of his marriage to Katherine of Aragon. Working as chief clerk of the signet and as Thomas Cromwell’s secretary soon awarded Wriothesley Henry VIII’s favour

After the dissolution of the monasteries Wriothesley obtained through royal grant, several former religious manors and houses as well as three houses in London. Purchasing Titchfield Abbey Wriothesley made this is primary residence and transformed the building into a lavish home befitting his status as a member of the King’s court.

Thomas Wriothesley married a lady named Jane Cheney, daughter of William Cheney of Buckinghamshire. Jane outlived her husband and died on the 15th of September 1574 and was buried at Titchfield. The couple had three sons, William, Anthony and Henry. Tragically both William and Anthony died young and it was young Henry that would become his father’s heir. The couple also had five daughters, Elizabeth, Mary, Katherine, Anne and Mabel.

Wriothesley was deeply involved with the annulment of Henry VIII’s marriage to his fourth wife Anne of Cleves. Despite working for Thomas Cromwell, who had fought for the marriage, Wriothesley begged his master to free the King from the disastrous marriage. He also testified that the King did not consummate his marriage with Anne. Wriothesley was also part of the delegacy that was sent to Anne of Cleves to inform her that her marriage to the King had been annulled.

Despite the every changing face of courtly life and the fall of Henry VIII’s right hand man, Thomas Cromwell, Wriothesley star continued to rise. In April 1540 Wriothesley was appointed joint principal secretary to the King along with Ralph Sadler. In the very same month he was elected to the Privy Council and knighted. He was trusted to be part of the delegation that spoke with the King about the adulterous actions of Henry VIII’s fifth wife, Katherine Howard, as well as being instructed to interview the Queen about her alleged affairs.

On the 29th of January 1543 Wriothesley had the great distinction of becoming joint Chamberlain of the Exchequer. Between 1542 and 1544 Wriothesley worked closely with the Imperial Ambassador Eustace Chapuys to see an Anglo-Habsburg alliance formed between England and Spain against the common enemy France. Over the next year Wriothesley was trusted with taking messages to Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor on behalf of Henry VIII. In 1542 Imperia Ambassador Eustace Chapuys described Wriothesley as one of ‘the two people who enjoy nowadays most authority and have the most influence and credit with the king’.

When England went to war with France in 1544 Wriothesley was appointed to Queen Katherine Parr’s (Henry VIII’s sixth wife) regency council. He held the position of treasurer of the wars and was responsible for raising money to fund the wars, a role which he found extremely difficult and draining.

On the 1st of January 1544 Wriothesley was elevated to the peerage as Baron Wriothesley of Titchfield. Then on the 23rd of April the following year he was elected a Knight of the Garter, the most prestigious order of chivalry in England. The very next day his youngest son Henry was baptised; the King himself acting as Godfather.

On the 3rd of May 1544 Thomas Wriothesley was granted the most prestigious position of Lord Chancellor. This position effectively made Wriothesley one of the most important men of the court and also made him responsible for the King’s Great Seal. One of his roles as Lord Chancellor was to open Parliament in 1545 and presided over the Upper House. In the Parliament of January 1547 Wriothesley was among a group of men that were authorised to sign acts on behalf of the ailing Henry VIII.

Wriothesley was devout in his religious beliefs and strongly enforced the King’s religious policies, willing to act harshly and even cruelly at times against those who he believed deserved to be punished. He actively sought out both Protestants and Catholics of whom he believed had broken the King’s and Church’s laws. One of his most famous victims was Anne Askew. Brought before him in May 1546 Anne was examined in the hopes that she would confess to her heretical beliefs and in the process expose Queen Katherine Parr. Refusing to confess anything Anne was taken to the Tower of London. Here she was racked personally by Wriothesley and Sir Richard Rich. Racking a woman was illegal at the time and yet no punishment seems to have befallen Wriothesley for his actions. Wriothesley attended Anne Askew’s execution, being burnt at the stake, on the 16th of July 1546.

In the last month of Henry VIII’s life Wriothesley was active in gathering the accusations made against the Earl of Surrey, accusations which accused the young man of seeking to take the throne from Henry VIII’s son Edward when the King was dead. Wriothesley also examined Surrey and was part of the jury in the Earl’s trial on the 13th of January 1547. Wriothesley witnessed the written confession of Surrey’s father, Thomas Howard, 3rd Duke of Norfolk in which he was charged with seeking to put his son on the throne.

On the 27th of January 1547 King Henry VIII died. It was Wriothesley’s duty as Lord Chancellor to announce the King’s death to parliament. Not unsurprisingly Wriothesley benefited greatly upon Henry VIII’s death, being rewarded with £500 and being appointed as one of sixteen men to sit upon the council for the young King Edward VI. In addition to this he was created Earl of Southampton with an annual allowance of £20.

At Edward VI’s coronation Wriothesley had the great honour of carrying the new King’s sword of state however only a fortnight later he was suddenly confined to his home at Ely Palace. In addition to this the Great Seal was taken from him and he was fined £4000. Even more drastically he was removed from the new King’s council.

Wriothesley’s offence was that he had abused his position and authority, however this was only a façade and the real issue lay with his opposition of Edward Seymour, Duke of Somerset and Uncle to Edward VI. Upon Henry VIII’s death a council of sixteen men were set up to help govern England and young Edward VI. Both Seymour and Wriothesley were upon this council and members of the council quickly appointed Seymour as Lord Protector – effectively the head of the council. While he had authority he was supposed to support the majority decision of the council and his powers were limited. Wriothesley opposed Seymour’s new position and Seymour, supported by Baron Rich and Sir John Baker used the allegation of abusing his power against Wriothesley to see him removed from the council and effectively out of the way.

Wriothesley accepted his fall graciously, most likely to save himself as he realised he was greatly outnumbered on the council. On the 29th of June 1547 Wriothesley was released from house arrest and his fine cancelled. Surprisingly he was allowed back onto the King’s Council and also attended parliament regularly between 1547 and 1549.

In 1549 a move was made against Edward Seymour, Duke of Somerset and the Lord Protector. Wriothesley was part of a conservative religious group, including the 12th Earl of Arundel, which sought to see Seymour from power. The coup worked for a time and when Seymour was removed from his position Wriothesley obtained a measure of power, even having the honour of serving the King. However this did not last long and soon Wriothesley and Arundel were expelled from court.

In January 1550 Wriothesley was under house arrest once more and soon had his name removed from the council. However by now Wriothesley was ill and on the 30th of July 1550 he died at Lincoln House, London. He was buried in St Andrew’s Church, Holborn; however on the 3rd of August his body was reburied at Titchfield.

Thomas Wriothesley is a man difficult to define. Many of his contemporaries described him as intelligent, efficient and effective in his duties with great ambition. While others thought him to be too ambitious for his own good and easy to anger. His personal religious beliefs are equally as difficult to determine. He appeared to be a Catholic, opposing Edward Seymour’s evangelical pursuits; however he strongly supported the dissolution of the monasteries and the King’s position as the Supreme Head of the Church. It may simply be that Wriothesley was a man of his time, attempting to see which way the wind was blowing and positioning himself in such a way that he would stay in power. Sadly his strategy proved to be his downfall.

Thomas Wriothesley

Sources:

Institute of Historical Research, WRIOTHESLEY, Thomas (1505-50), of Micheldever and Titchfield, Hants and Lincoln Place, London, The History of Parliament, viewed 5 May 2017, < http://www.historyofparliamentonline.org/volume/1509-1558/member/wriothesley-thomas-1505-50&gt;.

Life of Thomas Wriothesley intrinsically linked to Hampshire’s history, Hampshire History, viewed 5 May 2017, < http://www.hampshire-history.com/hampshires-greatest-nobleman/&gt;.

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Wriothesley, Thomas, first earl of Southampton  (1505-1550), Oxford University Press, viewed 5 May 2017, < http://www.oxforddnb.com/&gt;.

Henry Carey

On the 4th of March 1526 Mary Boleyn gave birth to a son she named Henry Carey. Mary Boleyn was a member of Henry VIII’s court, married to Courtier William Carey and older sister of Anne Boleyn who would become Queen of England. Mary Boleyn was also the mistress of Henry VIII from around 1522 – 1525.

Over the centuries there has always been a great deal of debate as to who Henry Carey’s father was. Henry Carey was conceived during 1525, the year that Mary’s relationship with Henry VIII was coming to an end. It may be possible that during the last few times the King slept with Mary she conceived. It has also been suggested that Henry would not have wished to share Mary with her husband, keeping her to himself during the entire period of their relationship.

During his life there were also rumours that Henry Carey looked quite a lot like Henry VIII and that Henry VIII gave Mary’s husband William Carey a series of grants and appointments around the time each child was born in an attempt to keep him happy. It has also been proposed that Queen Elizabeth was close Henry Carey; this must have been because they were in fact half-brother and sister rather than just cousins. Queen Elizabeth knighted Henry Carey and made him Baron Hunsdon; she also visited him on his death bed offering him the Earldom of Wiltshire (once owned by his grandfather Thomas Boleyn).

On the other hand there are just as many reasons proposed as to why Henry VIII was not Henry Carey’s father. It is just as plausible that during the time Mary was the King’s mistress she may have also been sleeping with her husband. Henry VIII never acknowledged Henry as his son, where he had acknowledged Henry Fitzroy, a son he bore with his previous mistress Bessie Blount.

It has also been proposed that Henry VIII may have had low fertility and thus there would be a low probability that Mary could become pregnant by the King. It has also been suggested that the grants given to William Carey could have simply been to keep him silent and happy about his wife sleeping with the King, as well as for his dedicated service to the King. Also the reason that Queen Elizabeth showed great favour to Henry Carey was simply because they were cousins.

Whomever Henry Carey’s biological father was it was William Carey, Mary’s husband, that acknowledged baby Henry as his son and heir. Henry Carey would grow up to become a prominent and impressive member at court.

On the 21st May 1545 Henry obtained a licence to marry Anne Morgan daughter of Sir Thomas Morgan. The couple would go on to have twelve children together – nine sons and three daughters.

During his early years Henry Carey became a diplomat, ambassador and a member of parliament. In 1546, during the reign of Henry VIII, Carey accompanied John Dudley, Viscount Lisle on an embassy mission to France. In the first year of Edward VI’s reign Carey was MP for the borough of Buckingham and during the reign of Mary I he was a carver of the privy chamber. In 1557 Carey was held in the Fleet prison for debts of £507 which had occurred in 1551 but was soon released on bond on the 19th May.

When Elizabeth I came to the throne Henry was knighted and on the 13th January 1559 he was created Baron Hunsdon and granted substantial lands in Kent, Hertfordshire and Essex which provided a yearly income of £4000, a huge sum at the time. On 31st October 1560 Henry was appointed as Master of the Queen’s hawks and then on 18th Mary 1561 he was created a Knight of the Garter, the highest order of chivalry in England. In 1564 Carey was granted the distinct honour of leading a mission to France where he presented the Order of the Garter to the French King Charles IX, on behalf of Elizabeth I. He also witnessed the sighing of the treaty of Troyes between England and France.

On the 25th of August 1568 Carey was appointed Governor of Berwick, a position which saw him protecting the north of England from Scottish invaders and any possible rebellions. One such rebellion took place on the 20th January 1570. Henry Carey and a group of around 1500 soldiers faced English rebel Leonard Dacre who was part of an uprising in the North of England. Carey and his men, although outnumbered, stood strong and managed to scatter the rebel army which quickly fled north along with Dacre. In response to his victory Elizabeth I wrote to her cousin declaring that: ‘I doubt much, my Harry, whether that the victory was given me more joyed me or that you were by God appointed the instrument of my glory’. For the country’s good the first suffices, but ‘for my heart’s contentment the second more pleased me’.

On 23 October 1571 Carey was appointed Warden of the East Marshes which afforded him even greater responsibilities in protecting the north of England. On the 16th of November 1577 Henry received the high distinction of being appointed as a member of the Privy Council. This provided him greater access not only to the Queen but to the administration of England’s policies. Carey focused the remainder of his years upon his work in the Privy Council, although there were four occasions between 1578 and 1588 that he was recalled north to protect the Northern boarders and to negotiate with the Scots. In fact Henry Carey was so influential in Scottish matters that he was seen as the leading member on the Privy Council in Scottish matters and the Scottish King, James VI wrote personally to Carey on several occasions.

During 1583 Elizabeth I re-appointed Henry as captain of the Gentlemen Pensioners and in July 1585 he was appointed as Lord Chamberlain of the household as well as continuing his privy councillor duties. In 1589 Carey was appointed as Chief Justice in Eyre South of Trent and on the 2nd of March 1592 he was appointed High Steward of Oxford for the remainder of his life. This appointment added to his other stewardships of Doncaster and Ipswich which had been granted to him in 1590.

Henry was active in political life until his death on 23rd July 1596 at Somerset House. Just as his sister Catherine, Henry Carey was buried at Westminster Abbey, the expenses of this paid by his cousin Elizabeth I. It is rumoured that on his death bed Elizabeth I offered Henry the Earldom of Wiltshire, a title held by his grandfather Thomas Boleyn. However Henry refused the title stating that if Elizabeth did not think him worthy of the title while he was alive he would not accept it now that he was dying.

Henry Carey was a hardworking, dedicated servant and courtier of his cousin and Queen, Elizabeth I. He proved himself both on the battle field and in political matters. Upon his death Carey was succeeded by his son George Carey who became 2nd Baron Hunsdon

Henry Carey

Henry Carey, 1st Baron Husdon

Sources

Licence, Amy. The Six Wives & Many Mistresses of Henry VIII, Amberley Publishing, Gloucestershire, 2014.

Wallace T. MacCaffrey, ‘Carey, Henry, first Baron Hunsdon (1526–1596)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004; online edn, Sept 2014 [http://www.oxforddnb.com/view/article/4649, accessed 6 June 2015]

Weir, A 2011, Mary Boleyn: The Mistress of Kings, Ballantine Books, New York.

Wilkinson, J 2010, Mary Boleyn The True Story of Henry VIII’s Favourite Mistress, Amberley Publishing, Gloucestershire.

 

Henry Fitzroy

Henry Fitzroy was the illegitimate child of Henry VIII, second Tudor monarch, with his mistress Elizabeth Blount. In 1512, when Henry VIII was approximately twenty one years of age a beautiful young woman came to court. Her name was Elizabeth “Bessie” Blount and at that time she had no idea the future that lay ahead of her. While the Blount’s were not members of nobility they were members of the gentry who through opportunity, connections and talent had earned a place at court. It is believed that it was William Blount, Lord Mountjoy, who was Queen Katherine of Aragon’s chamberlain, who acquired a place at court for Elizabeth Blount. Sometime between 1513 – 1514 Bessie became a maid of honour to the Queen. As a maid of honour, Bessie would have had to have been beautiful, well-mannered and held all the qualities suitable for a young lady of the time including being able to play a musical instrument, be able to sing, dance, undertake needlework, know her place amongst men and most importantly be devout to the Catholic faith. It is reported that Bessie was a very talented singer and dancer and it may have been these talents which attracted the young Henry VIII.

Bessie is first linked to Henry VIII during the Twelfth Night celebrations in 1514 when the King chose Bessie to be his dancing partner. At this time Bessie was thirteen years of age and the King around twenty three. While it may seem like an extreme age difference it was not uncommon at the English Court for a man to partake in courtly love with a younger woman. This would have consisted of writing her love notes and giving the woman tokens of love and admiration. Bessie was considered to be extremely beautiful, eloquent and gracious and Henry was tall, handsome and athletic and the match between the pair became well known.

When exactly the pair became intimate is unknown and when the relationship ended is also speculated upon. It is believed that Bessie fell pregnant around August 1518 as in early 1519 Bessie left court to stay at the Priory of St Lawrence in Blackmore Essex. On June 15th Bessie Blount gave birth to a healthy young boy who was named Henry Fitzroy, after his father the King. The name Fitzroy is a Norman-French surname meaning “son of the King”, and it was common for illegitimate children of the King to receive this name. Henry VIII publically acknowledged the boy as his own and his grandfather was Cardinal Thomas Wolsey who was the right hand man of the King.

From birth little Henry Fitzroy’s prospects were on the rise. His care was to be overseen by Cardinal Wolsey and on 7 June 1525, just before his sixth birthday the little boy was elected as a Knight of the Garter, the most prestigious order in England. Then on 18 June 1525 at Bridewell Palace he was created Earl of Nottingham as well as given the double Dukedom of Richmond and Somerset. During the creation the young boy came out and knelt before the King, once he was created Duke of Richmond and Somerset Fitzroy then took his place on the dais beside his father.  It should be noted that at this time there were only two other Dukes in England, the Duke of Norfolk and the King’s brother in law, the Duke of Suffolk. By giving Henry Fitzroy a double Dukedom and then having Fitzroy on the dais beside him Henry VIII was elevating his six year old son as the highest peer in the country and ensuring that everyone was aware of this. As Earl of Nottingham and Duke of Richmond and Somerset the six year old boy was given lands and revenues around £4845, a staggering sum of money at the time.

Fitzroy was also created Warden General of the Northern Marches on 22 June 1525. Also in 1525 Fitzroy was granted his own household at Durham House, in the Strand, London and Baynard’s Castle. Over the next few years Fitzroy was created Lord Admiral of England, Lord President of the Council of the North, Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Chamberlain of Chester and North Wales, Warden of the Cinque Ports and Constable of Dover Castle, Keeper of the City and Castle of Carlisle, although obviously someone else would have acted in his place.

From 28 August 1525 to 16 June 1529 Fitzroy lived principally in Yorkshire, at Sheriff Hutton or at Pontefract. He was given his own household of 245 servants including grooms, ushers, cooks, bakers, stablemen, yeomen and chaplains. It has been reported that the bill of wages in 1525 for Fitzroy’s servants (including food and clothing) came to a staggering £3 105 9s 8d. Fitzroy was also dressed in lavish clothing and given a classic education including learning Latin, Greek, French, and music; although just like his father he preferred outdoor sports. On the 9th August 1529 at the age of ten young Fitzroy was summoned to parliament, which he attended regularly.

After Thomas Wolsey’s downfall in 1529 care for the young Henry Fitzroy was given to Thomas Howard, Third Duke of Norfolk. From this time Fitzroy was an active member of court. In October 1532 he accompanied his father and Anne Boleyn to Calais for the King’s meeting with King Francis I of France. It was arranged between Henry VIII and Francis I that Fitzroy should stay at the French court for a time and Fitzroy was accepted as a member of the King’s Privy Chamber and lodged with the Dauphin, the French King’s son. A little under a year later Fitzroy was recalled to England for his marriage.

It is possible that marriage discussions between Fitzroy and the Duke of Norfolk’s daughter Mary Howard began shortly after the care of Fitzroy was taken over by the Duke of Norfolk. The couple finally married on the 26th November 1533, although due to their young ages (both were only fourteen) the marriage was never consummated. There was talk that Henry VIII initially considered marrying Fitzroy to his half-sister Mary, daughter of Katherine of Aragon born in 1516, although if there was any truth in this remains unknown.

Despite his young age Fitzroy continued to hold a number of important positions including being created Lieutenant of the Order of the Garter on 17 May 1534, holding feast in honour of the French admiral in November of the same year and in February 1535 entertaining the imperial ambassador, Eustace Chapuys. He was also present when Anne Boleyn, second wife of Henry VIII, was executed upon Tower Green on the 19th May 1536.

It appears that Fitzroy was close to his father. Henry VIII referred to his son as ‘my worldly jewel’ and after Anne Boleyn was arrested and taken to the Tower of London, Fitzroy went to bid his father goodnight and gain his blessing. Henry VIII pulled his son into his arms and weeping Henry VIII told him that he and his half-sister Mary were lucky because Anne had tried to poison them both. There is no evidence to suggest that Anne tried to poison Mary or Fitzroy although the very idea of it grievously upset the King. The pair also exchanged gifts and letters.

Tragically Fitzroy was only to live a little over two months after Anne Boleyn’s execution. Henry Fitzroy died quite suddenly at St James’ Palace on 22/23rd July 1536. There is debate as to what exactly killed the young man of just seventeen years of age. It is believed that Fitzroy died of tuberculosis, although another suggestion put forward has been pneumonic plague. The young man’s death was quite a shock to the King and others. When he attended the opening of Parliament on the 8th June 1536 Fitzroy did not show any signs of illness. The first signs of any illness was recorded on July 8th and two weeks later the young man was dead.

For the illegitimate son of King Henry VIII, Earl of Nottingham and Duke of Richmond and Somerset, Fitzroy was not to receive any publish or lavish funeral. Instead arrangements for his funeral were entrusted to the Duke of Norfolk. Fitzroy’s coffin was hidden under straw and taken by cart to Thetford Priory, Norfolk where he was buried. When Henry VIII dissolved the monasteries Fitzroy’s coffin was moved to St Michael’s Church, Framlingham, Suffolk. It is interesting to note that several days after Fitzroy’s funeral Henry VIII wrote to the Duke of Norfolk angrily asking why his son had not received a more honourable and lavish funeral.

There has been some debate regarding the prospect of Henry Fitzroy becoming Henry VIII’s heir. By 1525, when Fitzroy was invested with such lavish titles and position Henry VIII only had one living child, a daughter named Mary. It has been proposed that Fitzroy was given such titles and position to smooth his path to becoming legitimized and being named Henry VIII’s heir. Weather Henry VIII had any intention in this remains unknown.

Henry Fitzroy

Henry Fitzroy, 1st Duke of Richmond and Somerset (Image from Wikipedia)

Sources:

Hart, K 2009, The Mistresses of Henry VIII, The History Press, Gloucestershire.

Jones, P 2010, The Other Tudors Henry VIII’s Mistresses and Bastards, Metro Books, New York.

 Licence, A 2014, The Six Wives & Many Mistresses of Henry VIII the Women’s Stories, Amberley Publishing, Gloucestershire.

Murphy, B Fitzroy, Henry, duke of Richmond and Somerset (1519–1536), Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, viewed 22 July 2017, <http://www.oxforddnb.com/index.jsp&gt;.

Meyer, G.J 2010, The Tudors The Complete Story of England’s Most Notorious Dynasty, Random House Inc., New York.

Weir, A 2008, Henry VIII King & Court, Vintage Books, London.

When did the Mary Rose Sink?

The Mary Rose was Henry VIII’s great flag ship which was built between 1509 and 1511. When Henry VIII succeeded to the thrown after his father’s death he decided to build up the English navy since the country was under the constant threat from a French invasion. Amongst other ships Henry VIII ordered the building of the Mary Rose, most probably named after his younger sister Mary Tudor.

After a long and successful naval career the Mary Rose tragically sunk on July 19th 1545 in the Solent during a battle with the French fleet. When the Mary Rose met her fate and sank she was thirty four years old, one of Henry VIII’s greatest war ships and she carried magnificent guns and had a crew of over four hundred men. Nearly all of the four hundred crew and soldiers perished when the Mary Rose went under. It has been proposed that a possible reason the Mary Rose sank was because she was making too tight of a turn and that the gun ports close to the water level were still open thus letting water into the hull of the ship. It has also been suggested that there was disorganisation and unruly men aboard the ship either not taking orders or due to the chaos unable to hear and understand the orders. The orders may have been given to close the gun ports before the ship turned, but unfortunately they were not heard or understood.

The hull of the Mary Rose was raised in 1982 and is currently located at the Portsmouth Historic Dockyard where it is undergoing restoration and preservation to be viewed by the public in 2012.

Mary Rose

The Mary Rose, image from wikipedia.

Source:

National Geographic, ‘The Ghosts of the Mary Rose’, date watched 10th July 2011.

The Mary Rose Trust,  2011, ‘19th July 1545: when their world stopped our story began’, viewed 19 July 2017, <Available from Internet < http://www.maryrose.org/index.html&gt;.