On or around 4th May 1536, Sir William Kingston, Constable of the Tower of London, wrote to Thomas Cromwell to report back on things that the Queen had said during her imprisonment. The ladies who were attending on Anne in the Tower had been carefully chosen by Cromwell and had been instructed to replay everything Anne said back to Kingston who would, in turn, pass it on to Cromwell.
Anne Boleyn may have had a Queen’s household and sumptuous lodgings, but she was still a prisoner and was surrounded by women who had little sympathy for her. No wonder Anne complained to Sir William Kingston, saying, “I think [much unkindness in the] King to put such about me as I never loved.” Anne also complained of the treatment she had experienced at Greenwich, when she was arrested, claiming that she had been “cruelly handled”. She went on to wonder if her treatment was actually down to the King testing her: “[…] but I th[ink the King d]oes it to prove me […]”
You can read more about the ladies who served Anne and also Kingston’s report in my article Cruelly Handled – Anne Boleyn in the Tower.
Notes and Sources
- LP x. 797