Anne Boleyn’s head was not put on a spike

| May 19, 2015

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 […]

In Memory of Five Innocent Men – 17 May 1536

| May 17, 2015

In Memory of Five Innocent Men – 17 May 1536

I sometimes feel that Sir Henry Norris, Sir Francis Weston, William Brereton, Mark Smeaton and George Boleyn, Lord Rochford, get forgotten about. On social media, there are often pleas to get Anne Boleyn pardoned or moved from St Peter ad Vincula, and visitors take flowers to her resting place on 19th May each year, but […]

17 May 1536 – These bloody days have broken my heart

| May 17, 2015

17 May 1536 – These bloody days have broken my heart

The famous Tudor poet Thomas Wyatt the Elder wrote two poems about the executions he witnessed in 1536 from his prison in the Bell Tower of the Tower of London. In one, he wrote of how “These bloody days have broken my heart” and I am always moved by those words and the refrain at […]

15 May 1536 – The Trials of Queen Anne Boleyn and George Boleyn, Lord Rochford

| May 15, 2015

15 May 1536 – The Trials of Queen Anne Boleyn and George Boleyn, Lord Rochford

According to Eustace Chapuys, the imperial ambassador, on the morning of the 15th May 1536 Jane Seymour received a message from the King informing her that he would send her a further message at 3 o’clock regarding the “condemnation” of Anne Boleyn. Henry VIII was sure that Anne Boleyn was going to be found guilty […]

12 May 1536 – Appointment of Lord High Steward of England

| May 12, 2015

12 May 1536 – Appointment of Lord High Steward of England

On 12th May 1536, a patent was issued appointing Thomas Howard, 3rd Duke of Norfolk, as Lord High Steward of England for the forthcoming trials of Queen Anne Boleyn and George Boleyn, Lord Rochford. He had served in that position before, at the trial of Lord Dacre in June 1534. Norfolk was the siblings’ uncle, […]

Queen Anne Boleyn’s alleged crimes

| May 11, 2015

Queen Anne Boleyn’s alleged crimes

Following on from the rulings of the Grand Juries of Middlesex and Kent on the 10th and 11th May 1536, I wanted to share with you an extract from my book The Fall of Anne Boleyn: A Countdown about the indictments and Anne Boleyn’s alleged crimes. If we combine the Kent and Middlesex Indictments, we […]

11 May 1536 – The ruling of the Grand Jury of Kent

| May 11, 2015

11 May 1536 – The ruling of the Grand Jury of Kent

On 11th May 1536, the Grand Jury of Kent met on 11th May in front of Chief Justice John Baldwin and six of his colleagues at Deptford. They met to rule on the alleged crimes committed at Greenwich Palace, East Greenwich, and Eltham Palace by Queen Anne Boleyn, Sir Henry Norris, Sir William Brereton, Sir […]

10 May 1536 – Grand Jury of Middlesex’s decision

| May 10, 2015

10 May 1536 – Grand Jury of Middlesex’s decision

On 10th May 1536, Giles Heron, foreman of the Grand Jury of Middlesex and son-in-law of the late Sir Thomas More, announced that the jury had decided that there was sufficient evidence to suggest that Anne Boleyn, George Boleyn, Mark Smeaton, Sir Henry Norris, Sir Francis Weston and William Brereton were guilty of the alleged […]