7 January 1536 – Catherine of Aragon dies at Kimbolton Castle

| January 7, 2017

On this day in history, 7th January 1536, at two o’clock in the afternoon, Catherine of Aragon died at Kimbolton Castle. Catherine had been ill for several months but felt worse after drinking a draught of Welsh beer in December 1535 and this, combined with the embalmer’s report that all of her organs were healthy […]

Epiphany and a royal wedding

| January 6, 2017

Epiphany and a royal wedding

Today, 6th January, is Epiphany, the feast day celebrating the visit of the Magi to the Christ Child, and a day which brought the Twelve Days of Christmas to a close in medieval and Tudor England. Epiphany at the royal court was celebrated with feasting and pageantry, and you can find out all about it […]

2 January 1492 and 1536

| January 2, 2017

Two of my “on this day in history” posts that I post daily on the Anne Boleyn Files Facebook page are linked to Catherine of Aragon today. On this day in history, 2nd January 1536, Eustace Chapuys, the imperial ambassador, arrived at the dying Catherine of Aragon’s bedside in Kimbolton Castle. You can read Chapuys’ […]

22 December 1541 – The trials of the Howards and Tilneys

| December 22, 2016

22 December 1541 – The trials of the Howards and Tilneys

On this day in 1541, members of the Howard and Tilney family, plus their staff, were tried for misprision of treason for covering up the “unlawful, carnal, voluptuous, and licentious life” of Queen Catherine Howard while she lived with the Dowager Duchess of Norfolk at Lambeth. The people listed in the trial documents included Lord […]

Catherine of Aragon – Your Thoughts?

| December 16, 2016

Today is the birthday of Catherine of Aragon, or Catalina de Aragón, so I wanted to take this opportunity to ask you for your thoughts on this 16th-century woman. Even though she was married to Henry VIII for nearly 24 years, she’s so often ignored in favour of the wives who people perceive to be […]

16 December 1485 – Birth of Queen Catherine of Aragon, Henry VIII’s first wife

| December 16, 2016

During the night of 15th/16th December 1485, Catherine of Aragon was born at the recently reformed fortified palace at Alcalá de Henares, a town just east of Madrid. Pregnancy had not stopped Catherine’s mother, Isabella I of Castile, from waging war on the Moors, and she had spent the summer of 1485 moving around Andalucia, […]

10 December 1541 – The awful fate of Thomas Culpeper and Francis Dereham

| December 10, 2016

On 10th December 1541, Thomas Culpeper, gentleman of the Privy Chamber, and Francis Dereham, secretary to Queen Catherine Howard, were executed for treason at Tyburn. Dereham suffered a full traitor’s death, being “hanged, membered, bowelled, headed, and quartered” while Culpeper’s sentence was commuted to beheading. Their heads were then set on pikes and displayed on […]

Triumph and Tragedy: The Enduring Appeal of Henry VIII’s Six Wives by Conor Byrne

| December 8, 2016

Thank you to author and historian Conor Byrne for writing this guest article for us today. Yesterday, the Guardian published a provocative article entitled “Six Wives with Lucy Worsley: Why TV shows are for the chop.” The article, which reviewed the Oxford-educated presenter’s new television series on Henry VIII’s consorts, was highly critical. Joel Golby […]