The Aftermath of the Events of May 1536

| May 21, 2014

The Aftermath of the Events of May 1536

Today I want to share with you an extract from The Fall of Anne Boleyn: A Countdown about the aftermath of the executions of May 1536, the reactions of some people on hearing the news… Although Cromwell’s propaganda machine had been working flat out, spreading the salacious and shocking news that the King of England […]

Queen Anne Boleyn, 19th of May 1536

| May 19, 2014

Queen Anne Boleyn, 19th of May 1536

“Queen Anne Boleyn, 19th of May 1536″ is the wording on the card that accompanies the basket of red roses delivered to the Tower of London each year on 19th May and placed on Anne Boleyn’s memorial tile in the chancel of the Chapel of St Peter ad Vincula. Whenever I go to the Tower […]

And Whereas the crowned, the Most Happy Falcon was no more, a Phoenix was rising

| May 19, 2014

And Whereas the crowned, the Most Happy Falcon was no more, a Phoenix was rising

The 19th May 1536 saw the end of Anne Boleyn “The Most Happy” and the next day Henry VIII became betrothed to Jane Seymour. It was the end of the white falcon (Anne’s badge), but the phoenix (Jane’s badge) was rising. Thank you so much to Yann Kergourlay for putting it so well: “And Whereas […]

19 May 1536 – The Execution of Anne Boleyn at the Tower of London

| May 19, 2014

19 May 1536 – The Execution of Anne Boleyn at the Tower of London

Today I will be raising a glass to Queen Anne Boleyn, a woman whose life was cut short by an awful miscarriage of justice on this day in 1536 when she was beheaded by “the Sword of Calais” at the Tower of London. She had been condemned to death for high treason on 15th May […]

18 May 1536 – Postponement, Preparation and Prayer

| May 18, 2014

18 May 1536 – Postponement, Preparation and Prayer

On the night of 17th May 1536, while the carpenters built her scaffold within the grounds of the Tower of London, Anne Boleyn prepared herself for her execution, which had been scheduled for 9am on the 18th. At 2am, her almoner John Skip (some say her confessor Father Thirwell) arrived to pray with her. She […]

17 May 1536 – The Executions of Norris, Weston, Brereton, Smeaton and Rochford

| May 17, 2014

17 May 1536 – The Executions of Norris, Weston, Brereton, Smeaton and Rochford

On 17th May 1536, Sir Henry Norris, Sir Francis Weston, Mark Smeaton, William Brereton and George Boleyn, Lord Rochford, were executed on Tower Hill. They had all been found guilty of high treason and sentenced to be hanged, drawn and quartered at Tyburn, but their sentences had been commuted to the more merciful death by […]

16 May 1536 – The Men Prepare for Death

| May 16, 2014

16 May 1536 – The Men Prepare for Death

On 16th May 1536, George Boleyn, Sir Francis Weston, Sir Henry Norris, Sir William Brereton and Mark Smeaton prepared for their deaths by confessing their sins to Dr Allryge (or Alridge), the chaplain sent to them. Sir Francis Weston wrote out a list of his debts, which can be found in Letters and Papers, and […]

16 May 1536 – Anne Boleyn is “in hope of life”

| May 16, 2014

16 May 1536 – Anne Boleyn is “in hope of life”

On this day in 1536, Sir William Kingston, Constable of the Tower of London, reported to Thomas Cromwell what Anne Boleyn had said to him over dinner: “Yet this day at dinner the Queen said she would go to “anonre” (a nunnery), and is in hope of life.” This was following a visit from Thomas […]