Anne Boleyn’s Coronation Day 3 – 31 May 1533 – The Coronation Procession

On this day in history, Saturday 31st May 1533, the eve of her coronation, Henry VIII’s second wife, Anne Boleyn, made her way in a huge procession from the Tower of London, throught the streets of London, to Westminster Hall.

This is another day I’d like to see – I really need a time machine!

As the pregnant queen made her way through London, there were stops for pageants, orations, music and entertainment. The peope of London could enjoy seeing the procession of people dressed in their finery with horses in lavish trapping, and, of course, there was the free wine at a special wine fountain and the conduit in Fleet Street. Amazing!

Find out more about this procession in this video:

Or you can read an article on it here.

On this day in Tudor history, 31st May 1529, a special legatine court opened at Blackfriars in London. The court’s purpose was to hear the case for an annulment of Henry VIII’s marriage to Catherine of Aragon, and it was presided over by papal legate Cardinal Lorenzo Campeggio and Cardinal Thomas Wolsey.

Find out about the context of this court, what happened at the court and what happened next in this video:

And here’s a video on Catherine of Aragon’s speech at Blackfriars:

And now for a bit of lightheartedness!
Tim thought he’d have some fun today by getting Claire to answer questions to determine which of Henry VIII’s wives she’s more like. Who will Claire be? Find out in this video.

Why don’t you do the quiz yourself? You can find it at
Please do share in the comments which of Henry VIII’s six wives you admire and which one you actually got as the answer in the quiz.

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16 thoughts on “Anne Boleyn’s Coronation Day 3 – 31 May 1533 – The Coronation Procession”
  1. I would also love to see this. Anne would have been ecstatic albeit exhausted. It would be so interesting to see the different pageants not just for their elaborateness and messages but, for me at least to see how 16th century technology mechanized some of them.
    Posted yesterday: Talking Tudors new episode on Anne’s Coronation procession with Sarah Morris.

  2. Would the time machine remove the knowledge of what would happen in 1536? If not … the procession would be too bittersweet.

    FWIW, on the quiz … I’m Anne of Cleves … I get to survive, with a healthy settlement ,,,yay!!!!!!!!

      1. I too like Anna from Cleves, I think she was treated disgracefully by Henry V111, but then he definitely was not husband material anyway, she came all the way over here and her husband was bad mouthing her from the minute he saw her, he rejected a decent woman for a slip of a girl – Catherine Howard and she made a fool of him which led to her disgrace and death and another failed marriage, I have always been fond of Catherine Parr to she was a decent homely woman intelligent warm and loyal, she had cared for her last husband who was elderly and ailing, and was chosen by the king because of her maturity and he saw in her the qualities that he wanted as a good stepmother to his three children, especially lititle Edward, I always thought it such a shame that after three marriages, she married that rogue Thomas Seymour for love, and he disrespected her and she died sadly in childbirth, and her little daughter appeared to have died young to, very sad.

        1. Hi Christine. I too am a fan of Catherine Parr. Anyone who so easily could step into the role if step parent in her various marriages and always get along with and and was accepted by the kids is obviously a kind person. As you know kids and animals are good judges of people. This gift she had in my mind made her death after having her own child even more tragic than it already was.

  3. I would have to be Anne of Cleves, the most intelligent and successful of Henry’s Queens. However, I would probably have wanted to be even more successful by Henry getting on with me, but that’s not her fault, it was his. Anna wanted to marry Henry, the prestigious honour of outranking her sisters as Queen and she was disappointed that her marriage failed. She seems to have actually liked Henry and afterwards they remained on good terms. I don’t believe half of what he said anyway, it was invented to get out of a politically inconvenient marriage. However, Anna had a good life even if it was only 41 years long. The main reason I would want to be Anna is her settlement, let’s face it who would say no to at least two palaces, including Richmond, six or more houses, a wad of cash and continued contact with the family. Anna had a lot of freedom after her marriage was annulled, even after restrictions under Edward, she still had a lot of wealth and lived almost like a Queen. Her high status was maintained and she received visits from the royal children and others from Court. Anna chose not to remarry, although she was free to do so, but personally I would have got myself a man I could control, one who couldn’t care less about politics and I would have a couple of sons, send Henry a Holbein selfie and write on it ” This is what you are missing! “. I would then ask for another couple of palaces for the kids.

    I would of course love to see this brilliant spectacle of the coronation procession of Anne Boleyn as she made her way, mostly on foot through the City of London, towards Westminster where she rested that evening. Here she saw a pageant based on the life of Saint Anne, the mother of the Virgin Mary, on the Rising Falcon, her personal emblems, children sang for her which must have been delightful, fountains that poured wine and mysterious beasts. Imagine if you have been to Blackpool illuminations, the Tableaux coming to life, then you have an idea of the scenes Anne saw. Imagine if you have watched a festival with lots of floats and many different scenes on them for hours and again you have some ideas of what Anne may have seen. The Lord Mayers parade in London or Mardi Gras or one of the more elaborate religious processions in Spain might be visualized for example. As a football fan of a team which regularly has an open top bus parade in the hot sunshine of late May and early June, I know what it’s like to stand for hours in the blazing heat of early Summer waiting for the parade to pass and the excitement that generates. The Giants last visit to Liverpool brought almost 3 million people onto the streets, just to watch large puppets because they are extraordinary and it was their last visit, well for now. Its just one big holiday. People shouting, dancing, eating and drinking, cheering anything that goes past, the excitement building up and a real outpouring of joy and one huge party. That’s always a good feeling to have and even though Anne wasn’t that popular, people came to see her crowned, to see the new Queen because the spectacle of Majesty was mysteriously magic, it was one of reverence and curiosity and adoration and people were also fuelled by free wine, so I doubt very much reports that nobody cheered. Anne did say her reception was low key from the population but I am sure people still had a party, no matter what it was for. We go nuts about a royal doo even today. Of course the crowds these days are also made up from thousands of visitors from America and the Commonwealth but the parties go on as usual. Everyone enjoys a party, especially a free one. (Mayor Anderson please provide us with free booze and food when we are eventually allowed our parade) Anne reportedly was delighted with many of the plays and dramas and human tableau in her honour, the decorations, the colours, the smells, the singing, the bells ringing, the ceremony, even though she was hot and heavily pregnant. I bet she was glad to put her feet up with a glass of cooled wine and a banquet of sweet meats afterwards. It must have been a grand if exhausting day.

    1. Yes, Anna did get a great settlement upon her divorce from Henry but she also lost a lot of it after Edward ascended the throne.

  4. I answered honestly and came out as Anne. On previous quizzes , I came out as Katherine Howard so this was a pleasant result lol.
    In watching the video today, it occurred to me how my previous thoughts on how Anne experienced her coronation day were negatively influenced by how the crowd responded to her with so little enthusiasm. However, as I listened today she must have taken great joy in the extravagance and extensive work that went into all the preparations as well as the beautiful pageants. and reciting’s. No doubt she had confidence that when she had a son , the people would support her. Its nice to think that after recollecting all the sadness of her last days that she experienced some fond memories of her coronation events.

  5. I too wish I could go back in time just to see this spectacular display of pomp and ceremony and of course to see the new queen herself, even those who decried her would have been caught up in the celebrations and the free wine flowing would have put everyone in a good mood, there’s nothing like free alcohol to turn the most disgruntled into a merry chappie or lady! Anne herself must have looked stunning in cloth of gold with her dark hair loose and how she must have enjoyed all the little pageants done especially for her, on a rather sour note though, Bq mentions the pageant based on Saint Anne, I believe it was Ives who pointed out rather ironically that she only gave birth to daughters, but for now Anne was enjoying this wonderful spectacle and she must have been tired after an hour or two, we must remember she was heavily pregnant but at last she was able to rest and joined her husband for what must have been a welcome relief, a quiet dinner party maybe just for the two of them or a few guests as well, the next day was going to test her mettle even more.

  6. I did the quiz and came out as Catherine of Aragon, mind you half of the questions were not exactly relevant given my age lol, but still fun to see who I am. My choice would still be Anne of Cleves. I also ended up doing at least 10 other quizzes. What a fun site.

    1. K of A. Excellent. Thing is, you can’t go wrong. All six of Henry’s wives we’re good people. Henry, not so much.

    2. Lol I got K of A too. I am of course an Anne fan but K of A, what a woman. For choice I would have been Anna of Cleves.

      1. It might have been a trick and we could all of ended up as being Henry Viii lol. Yes, indeed, Katherine of Aragon was some lady. I would still choose Anne of Cleves, though.

        I also said my wedding dress would be red, an obvious colour for me but I would actually get married in a red wedding dress if I got married again. One of those tight sexy corset dresses with a Victorian skirt, something out of Gone With the Wind. I watch a lot of Say Yes To The Dress and every time someone wants one of those really expensive red ones or the really sexy ones I just think Wow!

        1. I wasn’t taken with the colour choices of the wedding dress question, but I chose turquoise because it suits me, but also because I love it, I also love the colour red, I wouldn’t wear green and although I love purple it’s more of a funereal colour than a wedding, but I know it’s regal to.

    3. I found that with the questions so I just answered how I would have had I been younger ha ha!

  7. I came out as Catherine Howard, I must say I was surprised because I thought I’d come out as Katherine of Aragon or Anne of Cleves.

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