30 April 1536 Queen Anne Boleyn Appeals to Henry VIII
Posted By Claire on April 30, 2011
Breaking news just in from court. The Scottish Lutheran, Alexander Alesius (also known as Alexander Ales and Alexander Alane), who is at court to see Thomas Cromwell, has just told Sir Tim of a scene he witnessed between the King and Queen. Sir Tim recorded his account and I have transcribed it here:-
“I saw the most serene queen, carrying the Princess Elizabeth, a little baby, in her arms and entreating the most serene king, in Greenwich Palace, from the open window of which he was looking into the courtyard, when she brought the Princess Elizabeth to him. I did not perfectly understand what had been going on, but the faces and gestures of the speakers plainly showed that the king was angry, although he could conceal his anger wonderfully well.”
Angry words between the King and Queen are definitely not uncommon, their relationship is one of storms followed by sunshine, and this scene does show that Queen Anne Boleyn has gone into damage control and has realised that the argument between her and Henry Norris is being turned into something it wasn’t by the Chinese whispers at court. The King knows the rumour mill which is the Royal Court these days so I’m sure that his wife appealing to him in this manner will have set the record straight.
The above “transcript” is based on the words that Alexander Ales wrote to Elizabeth I on 1st September 1559, recorded on the Calendar of State Papers Foreign, Elizabeth, Volume 1: 1558-1559, 1303:-
“Never shall I forget the sorrow which I felt when I saw the most serene queen, your most religious mother, carrying you, still a baby, in her arms and entreating the most serene king your father, in Greenwich Palace, from the open window of which he was looking into the courtyard, when she brought you to him. I did not perfectly understand what had been going on, but the faces and gestures of the speakers plainly showed that the king was angry, although he could conceal his anger wonderfully well. Yet from the protracted conference of the council (for whom the crowd was waiting until it was quite dark, expecting that they would return to London), it was most obvious to everyone that some deep and difficult question was being discussed.”
Eric Ives describes the relationship of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn as one where “storm followed sunshine, sunshine followed storm” – The Life and Death of Anne Boleyn, Eric Ives, p196.