23 May 1533 – The annulment of Henry VIII’s marriage to Catherine of Aragon

Posted By on May 23, 2015

Henry VIII and Katherine of AragonNow we’re leaving the “bloody days” of 1536 and going back in time to 1533 when Anne Boleyn was queen consort and waiting to be crowned.

On 23rd May 1533, Archbishop Thomas Cranmer declared that Henry VIII’s marriage to his first wife, Catherine of Aragon, had been annulled:

“My lord of Canterbury gave sentence this day at 11 o’clock in the great cause of matrimony; has declared it to be against the law of God, and has divorced the King from the noble lady Katharine. He has used himself in this matter very honorably, and all who have been sent hither on the King’s behalf have acted diligently and towardly. Sentence shall be given for the King’s second contract of matrimony before the Feast of Pentecost. The process is partly devised. 23 May.”1

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The Real Wolf Hall – The Cromwell Family in Wolf Hall: Richard Cromwell

Posted By on May 22, 2015

Joss Porter as Richard Cromwell in BBC 2'S Wolf Hall

Joss Porter as Richard Cromwell in BBC 2’S Wolf Hall

In today’s post, Teri Fitzgerald continues her examination of the family of Thomas Cromwell, the protagonist of Hilary Mantel’s Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies, by looking at Cromwell’s nephew Richard Cromwell. Thank you to Teri for a wonderful series of articles, I know I’m enjoying them.

Richard Williams alias Cromwell, was born around 15101 in the parish of Llanishen, Glamorgan,2 to Morgan Williams and Katherine Cromwell, daughter to Walter Cromwell and the elder sister of Henry VIII’s chief minister, Thomas Cromwell.3 Richard’s father Morgan Williams, a brewer with holdings in Putney by 1495 and Greenwich in 1517, was the son of William Morgan ap Howell of Whitchurch near Llandaff, Glamorgan, who had been a gentleman of the Privy Chamber to Henry VII.4 When Thomas Cromwell made his will in July 1529 his nephew, whose parents were now dead, was included among his kinsfolk.5 Richard was then in the service of Thomas Grey, 2nd Marquess of Dorset (father of Henry Grey, and grandfather of Lady Jane Grey). Following Dorset’s death in October 1530, Richard joined his uncle’s household at Austin Friars and while in his service was introduced at Court. He adopted the name of Cromwell and for the next ten years, as Richard Cromwell alias Williams, he acted as a trusted agent for the minister, often joining with him in offices and grants. He was appointed joint keeper of Marwell park, Hampshire in 1533, keeper of Orwell park, Cambridgeshire in 1534 and was given a place on the commission of sewers in Huntingdonshire in July 1534. He was constable of Berkeley castle, Gloucestershire (jointly with his uncle) from 1535 to 1540 and solely from 1540 to 1544; sheriff of Cambridgeshire and Huntingdonshire from 1536 to 1537 and again in 1541; justice of the peace for Cambridgeshire and Huntingdonshire from 1538 to 1544. By 1539 he had been made a gentleman of the privy chamber.6

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Mysticism and Medicine in Tudor England and Book Giveaway

Mysticism and Medicine in Tudor England and Book Giveaway

As part of the blog/book tour for her latest novel Phoenix Rising: A Novel of Anne Boleyn, Hunter is here again on The Anne Boleyn Files to share a guest article with us – welcome Hunter! MadeGlobal Publishing is also offering one lucky Anne Boleyn Files follower the chance to win a copy of Hunter’s […]

Anne Boleyn, Katherine Howard and a Magna Carta Baron by Marilyn Roberts

Anne Boleyn, Katherine Howard and a Magna Carta Baron by Marilyn Roberts

Thank you to author and historian Marilyn Roberts for sharing her knowledge with us today… The Epworth Magna Carta 800th Society was founded in the autumn of 2014 with the joint aims of bringing together the local community to celebrate the anniversary of the original version of Magna Carta while at the same time raising […]

20 May 1536 – A Secret Betrothal

20 May 1536 – A Secret Betrothal

On 20th May 1536, the day after Anne Boleyn’s execution and the day after Archbishop Cranmer had issued a dispensation allowing Henry VIII to marry Jane Seymour, the couple became betrothed. Chapuys recorded this betrothal in a postscript to a letter to Seigneur de Granvelle: “Has just been informed, the bearer of this having already […]

Phoenix Rising: A Novel of Anne Boleyn out today on Kindle and in paperback

Phoenix Rising: A Novel of Anne Boleyn out today on Kindle and in paperback

Hunter S. Jones’ wonderful book Phoenix Rising: A Novel of Anne Boleyn is out today in kindle and paperback formats. Here is the blurb: The last hour of Anne Boleyn’s life… Court intrigue, revenge and all the secrets of the last hour are revealed as one queen falls and another rises to take her place […]

From the Tudor Royals to “A Royal Night Out”… by Emma Connell

From the Tudor Royals to “A Royal Night Out”… by Emma Connell

Today, on the anniversary of Anne Boleyn’s execution in 1536, we have a guest post from actress Emma Connell. I was honoured to see Emma play Anne Boleyn in the play “Fallen in Love: The Secret Heart of Anne Boleyn” at the Tower of London on 19th May 2013. Emma was perfect as Anne and […]

Anne Boleyn’s head was not put on a spike

Anne Boleyn’s head was not put on a spike

Thank you to Jen for inspiring this post. She emailed me yesterday with the question “Was Anne Boleyn’s head put on a spike” and it’s one that I’m often asked about Anne Boleyn and also her brother and the men who were executed in May 1536, and I know it’s a question I will be […]