Anne Boleyn’s final Maundy Thursday in 1536

Posted By on April 14, 2022

On 13th April 1536, Maundy Thursday, Queen Anne Boleyn took part in her final Maundy Thursday service, distributing Maundy money and washing feet.

The court expenses show that the “costs of the Queen’s Maundy” for that year were “31 l. 3s. 9 ½d.”

Anne’s chaplain, William Latymer, and martyrologist John Foxe both wrote of how the amount in the royal Maundy purses distributed to the poor increased significantly when Anne Boleyn was queen, showing her passion for poor relief, which she believed was her responsibility as queen and as a Christian. Latymer recorded that one Maundy Thursday, Anne, after washing and kissing the feet of poor women, “commanded to be put privily [privately] into every poor woman’s purse one george noble, the which was vi.s viii d. [6 shillings and 8 pence], over and besides the alms that wonted to be given.”

Our present queen usually attends a special royal Maundy service, but this year the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall will be giving out the annual Maundy money at a special service at St George’s Chapel, Windsor.

Read more about Maundy Thursday here and about Anne’s charitable works here.

The events of 1536 are the focus of my forthcoming online event “The Fall of Anne Boleyn with Claire Ridgway” – click here to read more and register.

1 thought on “Anne Boleyn’s final Maundy Thursday in 1536”

  1. Christine says:

    Poor Anne dutifully she fulfilled her tasks, she was a champion for the poor and needy, in her brief lifetime as consort she did her best to help the less fortunate, men and women sought her help and she was very generous to those who needed it, born into luxury herself as she went on tours around the countryside she saw the pitiful rags the poorer members of society wore, she saw crippled men and and those women who had babies bundled in coarse cloth, her childhood in Kent must have seen her eye many a beggar who huddled around the church on Easter and lent and good Friday, and other religious holidays, and felt a need to help them, she was known for her generosity towards her friends, many of her relations enjoyed posts in her household, when her elder sister was cast of by the family it was Anne who sent her a purse of gold coins, she wanted the riches from the monasteries to help her poorer subjects, alas Cromwell had the king on his side as both men greedily had it all put in the treasury, one winders why Cromwell was so opposed to helping the poor, he himself helped many men and women in need, Mary Boleyn wrote to him twice, the first time after her husband died as she was then in financial difficulty, and later she sought his help when she was banished from court, Cromwell being the kings main adviser was very powerful, he had crawled himself out of the mire of his lowly beginnings and risen high, yet he turned his back on his own kind, now he was in a kind of struggle for survival with the queen, once his friend and patron, April in the year 1536 saw the sands of time running out for Anne Boleyn, she must have been very troubled that Maundy Thursday as she arose and performed her duties in this very old and strange ceremony, unfortunately our present queen was not able for the first time in her reign to attend Maundy Thursday either, neither is she attending the Easter Sunday service, she has got mobility issues understanding due to her great age.

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