13 November – Robert Packington was shot to death and Lady Jane Grey was tried for treason


On this day in Tudor history, 13th November 1536, mercer and member of Parliament Robert Packington (Pakington, Pakyngton) was shot to death by an unknown assailant while he was on his way to mass at St Thomas of Acre Chapel. He was shot with a wheellock pistol.

Robert Packington has gone down in history as the first person in England to be killed by a handgun, but who killed him and why?

Find out about Packington, his murder, and the theories regarding who ordered his murder, in this talk…

Also on this day in Tudor history, 13th November 1553, the former Queen Jane, or Lady Jane Grey, was tried for treason at Guildhall in London.

She wasn’t the only one tried, her husband Lord Guildford Dudley, his brothers Ambrose and Henry Dudley, and Thomas Cranmer, Archbishop of Canterbury, were also tried for treason for their parts in putting Jane on the throne.

Find out more about their trials, and what happened to them, in last year’s video

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One thought on “13 November – Robert Packington was shot to death and Lady Jane Grey was tried for treason”
  1. Poor Robert Packington, he was obviously seen as quite a dangerous man with his preference for William Tyndall, and there was poor Queen Jane to, yet another hapless victim of a mans lust for power, in this case Robert Dudley, yet her parents to were also at fault for allowing her to be so used, the charge of treason should not have been used against her, the right and lawful sovereign king Edward V1 had named her as his successor but it created such a legal conundrum that historians today are divided over whether she was the lawful queen or not, Eric Ives whose book on Jane I possess is in no doubt she was the rightful queen and it was Mary 1st who deposed her, Edward did not consult Parliament which he should have done, but did that make his Will unlawful he was king after all? Yet if he was coerced by others that would render it invalid, today if a persons will is thought to be coerced in favour of another, or others, that also renders it invalid, Dudley was a dangerous powerful man he had the young king in his grasp, and was hated and feared by the kings council, they knew he wished to rule England, yet when he proclaimed Jane as queen most of them went over to her side, it was Jane’s tragedy that she being the eldest child, became a scapegoat in the price for poet, she was the third queen to die on Tower Hill and the youngest, being only around seventeen a teenager still, her young husband and his other brothers were also tried for high treason, it was a brilliant coup that Dudley pulled of, and he nearly succeeded but underestimated Mary Tudor, they were all beheaded yet Jane’s parents were spared, sadly her father did not learn his lesson and became involved in the Wyatt plot, he could merely have been trying to save his daughter but that to failed, and this time Mary had no choice but to execute him, he also endangered Jane’s life because under pressure from Spain, Mary was urged to execute her to, something she clearly did not wish to do, she tried to convert Jane to Catholicism in a bid to save her life, but Jane an ardent Protestant, as ardent as Mary was about her own faith, could not conform and it says a lot about this remarkable young woman, when having the choice of a brilliant life ahead of her, or an horrific death, she chose death because her religion meant so much to her, highly precocious and brave she not only paid the price for another mans ambition, but also became a martyr to the Protestant faith.

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