4 August 1557 – Anne of Cleves’ funeral

Posted By on August 4, 2018

On this day in history, 4th August 1557, there was a requiem mass for Anne of Cleves, fourth wife of the late King Henry VIII, at Westminster Abbey.

After the mass and a “godly sermon”, Anne was buried in a tomb at the abbey. Her tomb is decorated with carvings of a crown and her initials, AC, skulls and crossed bones, and a lion’s head.

Merchant-taylor and diarist Henry Machyn recorded Anne’s funeral in his diary. I have modernised the spelling:

“The 4th day of August was the mass of requiem for my lady princess of Cleves, and daughter to [William] duke of Cleves; and there my lord abbot of Westminster made a godly sermon as ever was made, and [then] . . . the bishop of London sang mass in his mitre; [and after] mass my lord bishop and my lord abbot mitred did [cense] the corpse; and afterward she was carried to her tomb, [where] she lies with a hearse-cloth of gold, the which lies [over her]; and there all her head officers broke their staves, [and all] her hussars broke their rods, and all they cast them into her tomb; the which was covered her corps with black, and all the lords and ladies and knights and gentlemen and gentlewomen did offer, and after mass a great [dinner] at my lord (abbot’s); and my lady of Winchester was the chief [mourner,] and my lord admiral and my lord Darcy went of either side of my lady of Winchester, and so they went in order to dinner.”

Sources

Mastodon
Share via
Copy link
Powered by Social Snap