Was Anne Boleyn the first queen who was publicly executed?

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That's a tough question because officially Anne Boleyn was no longer queen as her titles were stripped from her after she was found guilty and her marriage to Henry VIII was annulled. However, she was still the queen in many people's eyes and was the first queen to be executed publicly.

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2 Responses to “Was Anne Boleyn the first queen who was publicly executed?”

  1. THOMAS says:

    This could be seen as a trick question.

    True, Anne was the first female English crowned head to be executed, but it wasn’t considered a “public execution”. Because of their rank, certain persons were allowed to be executed “privately”, within the confines of the Tower of London on Tower Green: Anne Boleyn, Katherine Howard, Lady Jane Grey, Margaret Plantageanet Pole, (Countess of Salisbury), Lady Jane Boleyn (Lady Rochford) and Robert Dudley,(Earl of Essex). There were plenty of people viewing the occasion, but it was still not considered “public”.

    Members of the nobility and gentry were beheaded on Tower Hill, in full view of the masses: Thomas More, John Fisher, Thomas Cromwell, and a host of others.

    Regular folk weren’t given the dignity of decapitation. Most “traitors” in Tudor times were hanged, drawn and quartered. In the London area it would have been at Smithfield (a place for horse- and cattle-marketing) or Tyburn Hill, hear current-day Hyde Park.

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  2. Gayle says:

    Alison Weir states in The Lady in the Tower that Anne was stripped of all titles, but not title of Queen.

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