Catch Gareth Russell talking about Jane Seymour!

Gareth RussellHistorian Gareth Russell, who is also the author of the The Emperors: How Europe’s Greatest Rulers Were Destroyed by World War I and upcoming books A History of the English Monarchy: From Boadicea to Elizabeth I and An Illustrated Introduction to The Tudors, is giving Tudor Society members a treat this month with his talk on Jane Seymour, third wife of Henry VIII, and a live online chat tomorrow.

If you’re interested in Jane and have been thinking of joining the Tudor Society, then now’s the time to join. There are already 11 expert talks on the site, 2 magazines, 8 Claire Chats videos, 8 fun quizzes and lots of other resources and goodies. See for more information.

Here’s a little snippet from Gareth’s talk:

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36 thoughts on “Catch Gareth Russell talking about Jane Seymour!”

    1. Why? And do you really have to use capital letters, which is used to denote shouting and aggression online? These talks are private talks for members, just like talks that take place at historic houses etc. where people buy tickets. The historians are paid for these talks so why should what they say be free? I have a YouTube channel with 23 free videos on it and you will find 1,680 posts and 875 pages on this site which are all free to read and most of what I work on and publish on a daily basis is free for everyone to enjoy.
      All of my books are under £3 on Kindle and a portion of the proceeds from my books and The Tudor Society goes to charity, so I’m not some kind of money grabbing fiend! I try to balance making things affordable for people while also actually living and being able to do what I do. I generally work 10 hour days and weekends on my research, writing and doing site admin, this is my job. I love what I do, but surely I can ask for some compensation for some of it when I do most of it for free. Can I just be candid and ask if you work for free?

  2. Having a portion of the video is just a way to entice people to join the Tudor Society; I am sure Gareth is a very interesting person to listen to and the information is also worth having, but as we cannot all afford to join the Tudor Society, the vidoe should be free to all and if it is shared then the entire thing shared free to all, either here or on You Tube. The information on historical people should always be free to all on the internet and no internet information shared that is not free. I am entitled to my opinion and you may not agree, but neither do I agree with you taking down my post as I said the same thing earlier and it appears to have been removed. All information on the internet should be free and these videos should be free in full if you are going to share part of them; all of the content should be shared for all to enjoy.



    1. I haven’t taken down your post, comments are held for moderation as you know because of spam comments. I have published it and replied to it. I completely disagree, historians have a right to be paid for giving their time and knowledge so information on historical people should not always be free. I pay to subscribe to be a member of various societies and organisations which give me valuable information and I appreciate that people need to be paid for what they do.

      This whole site is free to use, so there is plenty of free historical information available.

      1. Hello Claire, sorry it was not there the first time but I am having problems with my new security. Sorry too if I was a bit testy or sharp, actually you can ‘remove the first one, the second was meant to replace it. I have visited the site, just think more free content, but that is just me. I understand people need to be paid, but I am also a radical when it comes to the free exchange on the net, barring the usual checks to protect children of course. Apologies if I was a bit short.

        1. The use of capital letters in comments means “shouting” so you came across as very aggressive, but thank you for your apology.

          There is plenty of free exchange on the net, and particularly on this website. As I’ve said, I’ve shared over 1000 articles on this site alone, and that doesn’t take into acccount all the guest articles I’ve done on other sites and my own other sites too. I spend most of my time writing free content, answering questions people have about history or publishing, so I do the majority of my day job for free. I’m not forcing people to join the Society and pay for content. Tim and I pay for an admin assistant to run The Tudor Society, we pay contributors and speakers to share with our members and we have substantial running costs with the technology involved. Would we like to give everything away free? Yes, of course, but we’d be paying those experts out of our own pockets and where would that money come from?

          It is hurtful when you get criticised for asking payment for something when you spend the majority of your time working for free. I can hand on heart say that Christmas Day is the only proper day off I have, I even work on The Anne Boleyn Files on holiday because I moderate comments, do my on this day in history posts, handle emails etc. It drives Tim and the kids mad because I even do it on my phone when we’re camping. That’s how committed I am to keeping this site going and giving free content. Obviously that is my choice to do that and I can only do that because we live in a country where the cost of living is low and we are frugal, plus I have people who buy my books and I appreciate every one of them.

          The Tudor Society is not a money-making scheme, it is a way of giving people access to historians in a way that they usually can’t. Our members are enjoying it and so am I. I’m not going to apologise for advertising it or asking members to pay to meet the costs of the Society. I realise that not everybody can afford to join, but we’ve made it as reasonable as we possibly can. I could understand the criticism if I was suddenly making The AB Files a pay-to-view website or if I was closing the AB Files, but I’m not.

    2. Have you any idea how incredibly discourteous and churlish you are Bandit queen…I doubt it some how.
      Do you or have you done a full time job +overtime for nothing, I doubt that too.
      What you have just ranted, and I say ranted as you were aggressive and shouting, is ludicrous.

      Why is it wrong for Claire and Tim to advertise their ‘business’ on here? the fact that it is about historical people is not relevant.
      All other businesses advertise, you can’t go from one place to the next on the web without adverts being attached, same across all media sources…. whatever the subject matter.

      Yes you entitled to your opinion, but do you have to be so dogmatic with it, and at the same time refuse to acknowledge anyone else’s opinion or explanation as pertinent.

      There are many things I can not afford, things that others may take for granted, but that doesn’t mean they have to go without because of my situation….It would be self-centred and egocentric for me to presume so, not to mention brattish.

      So get off your high horse B.Q. and do the right thing and apologise to Claire, and Tim too, as he is also offended by your gall.

      1. As you say, it is my opinion. I apologize for being short about the post, I will not apologize for stating my views on the free available information on the net. Claire was not advertising, she is perfectly entitled to do so. Yes, I HAVE BEEN FULLY EMPLOYED FOR A NUMBER OF YEARS. NOW I AM A FULL Time carer, my husband has had cancer. I suggest you get your facts straight before ranting at me for expressing a valid opinion. I have apologized but I think you should apologize to me as well.

        1. There you go shouting again…not necessary.

          Not asking for an apology for having an opinion I was asking for you to apologise to Claire for the way you stated it.

          Advertising is a form of marketing to encourage and persuade people to become a consumer, i.e. join the site, so what would call the small taster above then?

          I asked if you had been fully employed without wage not, not employed per se.

          I am also a full time carer 24/7 to 2 young adults with severe learning difficulties, one who has just had a kidney transplant after nearly 5 years of dialysis which we trained to give at home, so if you want to score points in that department, I think we are more than equal…though I can not see where that comes into the equation.

          As for ranting, don’t give it if you can’t take it…as far as I am concerned you have apologised to Claire and Tim, and that’s all that matters..end of as far as I can see.

        2. Capitals mean emphasis NOT shouting. Dawn what has it to do with you? I am entitled to my opinion. I was mistaken over the post being taken down, I am right about the free access to information.

        3. Capital letters when used in just one or two words in a comment are for emphasis but when used for a whole comment/message then they mean that you’re shouting, they’re a way of showing anger online when people cannot see you or hear you, that’s their general use in texting and commenting – online etiquette. You’re not “right about the free access to information”, that’s your opinion and not a fact. People are allowed to charge for their time and for the knowledge they pass on as teachers and experts, and some people do not mind paying to learn from people with the expertise. Other people choose not to pay or can’t afford it and choose other options to learn which are free or that meet their budget. That is their choice. Please do not enforce your opinions as facts. We all feel differently and that’s why I run a few free sites and have a paid society which people can join if they want to.

          I share information that’s free on here and I also share info that people have to pay for, information like books, resources, courses, ebooks, societies, tours etc. which I think people will find useful or that are written or run by historians and experts I feel are knowledgeable and worth reading/listening to. I’m not just going to share free books and resources on here, I will share what I think is useful. People have choices over what they do.

          You mentioned before how there’s no free material on the Tudor Society to show people what they can expect, but there is a page of free material – quiz, magazine samples with whole articles in and a full video – That’s been on there since September and before that page was made there were example videos and articles there for people to browse. Hope that helps.

  3. Hi BanditQueen,

    I’m Tim, Claire’s husband and the Tech administrator behind the scenes on this site. I hope you don’t mind me being blunt with you, but honestly, your point of view is downright crazy. NO part of the internet is free. NONE OF IT. Not one single web page.

    Firstly, let’s consider the Anne Boleyn FIles. We pay £1200 per year for very powerful dedicated web hosting for this site. That much is needed because of the 250,000 page views we get each month, and that sometimes we have 500+ people simultaneously on the site.

    Next, consider the plugin which allows you to view the video on this page. It cost $70.

    Consider that I edited the video (and all of the free YouTube videos). Adobe Premier Pro subscription is £230 per year.

    Consider the hourly rates of a video editor (I know that we do it ourselves, but none the less) – around £50 per hour for a good one. And to edit an hour of video into .mp4 hd, .mp4 low res, .webm and .ogg takes about 2.5 hours.

    Consider that this site is made on WordPress which is constantly updated, and that whenever an update happens we have to check that the Forum, the Shop, the Gallery, the Blog and everything else is still working. IF it were done by a freelance programmer it would be costing us around £100 per month. I do it myself.

    Now consider the content itself. Minimum wage in the UK is £6.50 per hour. MINIMUM wage. Claire works 10 hours a day. She honestly does. That is £65 per day. Yes. She works weekends too. So I make that £23,725. In wages that Claire DOESN’T get from the Anne Boleyn Files. And that was at minimum wage. And that’s just Claire. I also work similar hours.

    That’s just the Anne Boleyn Files.

    Now think for a moment about ANY other website you like. They are also spending a LARGE amount of time and money to keep them going for you to view. For example Wikipedia. It’s NOT free. Every year they do a fund raising drive to get enough money to keep it going.

    The amount of times I’ve had Claire in tears over such crazy and uninformed comments like yours, telling us that she has to give up the Anne Boleyn Files, because of the amount of time she gives to it and how un-appreciated she is by some … you’re honestly being mad.

    Should the Anne Boleyn Files be free – probably not. But we would NEVER consider charging for it. We appreciate every single person who comes to the website.

    BUT it is OUR CHOICE what we promote and charge for. We DO charge for the Tudor Society because that website isn’t just us. We employ an administrator dealing with memberships. We have regular magazine contributors. We have expert speakers and historians. We have ANOTHER website to manage and administer. We need to cover our costs, and we have to live.

    So. I would very much appreciate an apology from you regarding your comments, though I doubt we’ll get one as I know how hard it is to change people’s opinions.

    p.s. for those people who will feel that they need to “stick up” for the Anne Boleyn Files or who might feel they need to tell us how “wonderful” we are you don’t need to comment back. This is simply an honest response from a husband to someone with misguided ideas about the internet and websites.

    1. I have supported the site for a number of years. I still believe that shared information should be free. I am not crazy, my point of view is shared by many radicals and others. I understand how hard you both work, but if you are sharing the video, why not share the entire thing or not at all. If you are meant to be using a loss leader, please say so. Also I merely believe that the site needs more free content to encourage membership. It’s an honest opinion and it is sad that anyone who has a different view is abused by other people, a sad indication of the lack of intellectual prowess and knowledge creeping into the membership.

  4. Claire and Tim, despite Tim’s postscript at the end of his comment, I want you to know that I DO offer my support to you, and I want to thank you for all the time and effort you put into both this site and the Tudor Society, of which I am a member. You don’t need to post this comment but as you no doubt know, most of us understand that the internet and web sites like yours (both of them) don’t magically materialize out of thin air at no cost or effort. Anyway, thanks for both of your web sites, as well as for Claire’s great books.

    1. Thank you, James, that means so much to me. I love running both The ABF and Tudor Society and it’s always heartwarming to hear that people enjoy them. Thank you for your support, I really do appreciate it and it’s so encouraging.

      1. I think people get used to getting everything free nowadays and don’t realise the costs involved in running something. With any website, someone is paying somewhere and if I had sponsorship for the Tudor Society or funding of some kind then I’d be delighted to offer it for free.

        1. Claire and Jim,
          I just wanted to thank you for this wonderful website. I have learned so much and found such wonderful books to add to my collection. I am always thankful for any videos that you share with us.

  5. Saying that everything on the internet should be free is like saying that everything on TV should also be free, that is, all of the premium movie channels such as HBO, Showtime, etc. should be available to anyone who can afford a television set, not to mention the more basic cable channels such as Discovery, A&E, Travel Channel, and the History Channel. I pay more each month because I want these particular channels. I dropped Showtime after it stopped playing The Tudors as I didn’t feel that I wanted to continue to pay when the show that I was watching was no longer on. Anyway, Claire and Tim, congratulations on the success of the Anne Boleyn Files and the Tudor Society, and keep up the good work

    1. Thank you, Nancy, I appreciate your ongoing support. That’s very true and I’m not forcing anyone to join or pay for the Tudor Society, it’s there for people who want the magazine, talk and resources, and this is here for people who don’t want that or cannot justify that commitment at the moment.

  6. Wish I wasn’t so poor so I could afford to subscribe, that site looks amazing 🙁

    But keep up the good work Tim and Claire 🙂

  7. I appreciate the fact that you have a right to charge for this stuff. Please appreciate that, as a college student, I really can’t afford it.

    1. I know, Maria, I appreciate that, that’s why I work hard at regularly posting on this site, offering the welcome pack and resource lists etc. here as I know what it’s like to be a student. I was a student and a stay at home mum for years so I know exactly how you feel. What are you studying? History? I wish you lots of success with your studies and if it’s history you’re doing and you need any help with sources then just ask, my email is

  8. Actually the use of capitals means emphasis NOT Shout or angry. But yes, Dawn I am angry, not at Claire at you. How dare you insult my professional life, it is none of your businesses. I am entitled to believe that there should be free exchange of information on the net. I think you should apologize for the insult.

    I also believe that professional people have the right to choose to charge, but if you share information on the free sites, free access to the whole information should be available, not just to part of it.

    Sic nos sic sacra turmur
    As to the use of capitals to express or emphasize something….Ainsi sera, groigne qui groigne.

    1. When you post something on a site that is for public view and participation, it is obvious that there are going to be responses. If you do not want the response of others on a public site then perhaps you should have private messaged Claire, or not publicise your opinion.

      I responded, firstly to the manner in which you were putting forward your opinion, which you presented in a hostile way, and not acceptable.

      Secondly the context of your post was borderline dictatorial, implying that any other view was wrong or unnecessary.
      Your opinion which would have perhaps drawn more respect if you gave the same to others that differ to your own, or at lest agree to differ.

      The point of you thinking your post had been removed does not distract from the fact it was typed in upper case letters.

      You are not RIGHT, but idealistic . In an idealist world it would be free, reality is completely different , everything in life has to be paid for, like it or not.

      The original post was not address to me, that anger was aimed at Claire, apparently I have angered you ‘more’ from then on.

      Insult to your professional life?, I know nothing of your professional life, it wasn’t mentioned, so how could I have insulted it?

      You may defend your sacred right, but that does not give the right to dismiss others who’s rights differ, and as for grumbling etc, other views are not grumbles, they are valid points too, but it is obvious you have no intension of considering any but your own… Puts you in a bad place.

      Time to move on now, life’s too short….

      1. I said nothing wrong, did nothing wrong, insulted nobody, merely expressed a perfectly valid statement about a video. I was not angry, capitals does not equal shouting or anger. I have read my original post and the supporting one, nothing wrong with either of them. Your personal attack on whether I have worked or not rightly made me angry. I am caring for a husband and MUM around the clock. I appreciate the need to work and make money. This is nothing to do with that. It’s about information sharing and access for all. What is the point of the video if not to e courage you to join the site to pay to see this and other talks. I really don’t believe stating a fact or saying that I feel shared information as this was should be free, then you can decide if you want to join or not is offensive save to you because you chose to be.

        The only thing I said wrong was an error over the ‘removal of the post, that is what you are really upset about. I could not see the first post or the reply, but apart from that I said nothing wrong. It was you who made the personal attacks, so where is the outrage over that? I have been a wonderful supporter of Anne Boleyn files for a number of years, and despite being constantly abused have remained on the site. I am entitled to my views, as are you. You are not entitled to the abuse your first post hurled at me and if I work or ever worked. I am mentally ill and physically ill and a full time carer, I am not angry at Claire, but yes your abuse made me angry. Now I have said enough.

        My apologies were for Claire for my error, before your abuse. I still believe in the free exchange of information on the net. This is a free site, it should remain so. Yes have a subscription site, charge what you want but don’t have a go at people who don’t
        think the free content is enough. I am only being honest. I may join at some point if I feel I can afford it, or it is good value. I have seen other societies and the free content is much more extensive. Th R third for a good example. If you are going to share a sample video to give a taste, the whole thing should have been shown, not a part, as pass leader. You do have to pay to join, so you can only see the video by paying for the society, I said nothing wrong there. Shared free content shouldn’t be privileged only, public information should be free at the point of use, the Anne Boleyn files does a great job, but shared historical sources and information should be free access to all.

        1. You might want to check out, Text and re the use of capital letters online, and that might help you to understand why your comment came across the way it did.

          By the way, are you also saying that I should not share extracts from authors’/historians’ books here as guest articles and blog/book tours, as you then have to buy their book to read the rest? What about resources like British History Online and Memso, who have digitised primary sources and share some free online but you have to pay to view the rest? I feel they’re excellent resources and I will mention them and recommend them. I have paid to use their resources, and I will pay again I’m sure. I also used to be a paid subscriber of The Times and Sunday Times online – they shared parts of their articles and you had to subscribe to read the rest of them. Other free sites have government funding, or sites like the BBC are funded through things like the TV licence payment, or sites like wikipedia do fundraising blasts as they’re doing now. Every time I visit Wiki at the moment I’m asked to donate. The Richard III Society has lots of free content, as does The Tudor Society which has thousands of articles, pages, resources etc. free on its sister site – this site!

          Re constantly abused, I’m sorry you feel that way. I’ll address that as that is important. Over the years, there have been heated discussions between you and other followers here but you’ve always ‘given as good as you have got’ I felt. You’ve called other people’s views “nonsense” and worse, you’ve attacked me suggesting that I’m anti-Catholic etc. I’ve emailed you to check you’re ok after heated debates, as I’ve done with others, and I’ve stepped in at times to calm things down. I’ve had complaints about you from other users too, so you’re not always the victim. People tend to react in the same way as a comment is addressed to them. If they’re told what they’re saying is nonsense and wrong, then they won’t be happy and friendly. I’m always happy to help in situations where upset is caused, simply email me and I’ll step in or close down the discussion.

        2. Well at least we can agree on one or two things BQ. firstly this ‘debate’ has out-stayed it’s welcome on this site, and in respect for Claire and of others enjoyment and ease I will make this my final comment.

          Secondly I understand completely the strain you are under being a full time Mum and carer , as I am in the same position as I mentioned above, it does take a toll on your physical and mental health and wellbeing. The stress and worry etc is at times at an unbearable level.

          I would like to stress once again I asked if you had worked full time + overtime for NOTHING, meaning for FREE, as in no wage, I did NOT ask if you have ever worked full time at all…that would have been very rude.

          The understanding I have of the use of capital letters on line, is if it equates to more than 3 or 4 words, it is showing anger/shouting with an aggressive undertone, therefore seeing a complete paragraph in uppercase showed that you fell into that category.

          As for what is the point of showing a video if not to encourage you join the site, that IS exactly the point, one that seems to allude you.

          Your reasoning or opinion is not fact, it is what you feel, as you said later in your sentence. Saying what you feel is commendable, believing what you feel is being true to yourself, stating what your opinion is a fact means it is an actuality, which it isn’t.

          As for you being continually attacked/abused, though I have not seen any evidence of this, perhaps at times you are getting back as good as you give. You have rejected and dismissed other peoples opinion in an off hand and abrupt manner, and then recoil grieved if they strike back. What do you expect.
          For example, your reply under Tim’s post…you said that there is ‘a sad indication of a lack of intellectual prowess and knowledge creeping into the membership’, that is a scathing remark to all that frequent the site who apparently in your school of thought don’t match up to your I.Q.
          I had no idea there was an I.Q. level to reach before joining in!!
          If a persons I.Q. has to measure up to your ‘I am right-you are wrong’ idealism, then I for one will, thankfully, fail miserably. Wasn’t feeling the ‘intellectual prowess’ vibe shining through there with that remark B.Q., perhaps a better phase would have been ‘Intellectual Arrogance’….

          My apologies to all other ABF followers and Claire, if at any time I have posted anything that you may find offensive…that was not my intension.

      1. Claire I never realised how hard you work, I hope u do get a good rest Christmas Day, and I’d like to say also I think this is a very good site, iv enjoyed reading all the other comments and your absolutely right, you cannot expect historians to give free talks to everyone neither can you expect all the internet to be free, as Tim says, it’s very costly, I come on here every other day as I enjoy it so much and I think the competitions are good, which makes it much more fun, you have to pay as you said to visit an historical building and all the costs go towards the upkeep of these places which are enormous, it’s great that the Anne Boleyn Files are free so keep up the good work

        1. Thank you, Christine, that’s lovely of you to say. I do work mad hours but I love what I do so that makes things easier. I’m so glad that you enjoy being part of the Anne Boleyn Files – thank yu.

  9. I’ve just logged on to the site to catch up – and am horrified to read this exchange!

    Claire and Tim, you do a fantastic job with this site, it’s sooooo enjoyable, and the fact that it’s totally free is just brilliant.

    With your new site The Tudor Society – of course you have every right to charge for membership if you so wish, especially if the costs of running the society demand this. Are you supposed to pay administrators and contributers with fresh air? I think not!

    All I really want to say is keep up the good work and don’t get upset over this. It would be a tragedy if opinions like these cause you to give up something you love doing and which gives immense pleasure to other amateur (and maybe professional?) historians like me.


  10. I just happened to come across this exchange. Tim and Claire, you have shown patience and restraint in this issue. We are all free to browse any websites we please, and abandon those who do not meet our expectations, so I don’t quite understand why this issue came about. Anyone who wants to wants to do the research has access to it, so paying to hear expert opinions or being a member of the Tudor Society, is no different than paying for a concert ticket, or admission to an art gallery. I found The Anne Boleyn Files early on, and I applaud you for the what it has become. Your work is remarkable.You have friends across the globe, and we are grateful, appreciative and in awe of what you have accomplished.

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