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Who Accompanied Anne Boleyn to the Scaffold?
July 14, 2013
2:38 am
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Mariette
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Which ladies accompanied Anne Boleyn to the scaffold? Did Henry have a change of heart and permit Anne to have ladies about her that she loved in her final hours?

Natalie’s article explores the possibility that Anne’s disapproving ladies were replaced…
http://onthetudortrail.com/Blo…../#comments

Call me a cynic but I’m not convinced that four cold, disapproving matrons, especially Lady Kingston, a staunch supporter and informant for Henry’s daughter Mary and a spy for Chapuys) could suddenly turn into young women and weep, seemingly “bereft of their souls” at Anne Boley’s execution. What are your thoughts?

July 14, 2013
5:45 pm
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Sharon
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There were five women including Lady Kingston who were originally with her when she was first arrested. Shelton, Coffin, Stoner, Boleyn and Kingston. None of them were young, none of them were very fond of Anne, (so it is said) and they were there to spy on her.

Denney claims that Margaret Wyatt was there with Anne. There are no names given as to which ladies were with Anne during her final days. We only know the names of the original five ladies.
There is no reference anywhere that Henry relented after the trial and allowed Anne her choice of attendants, Nor is there reference that Cromwell changed the women. Not all accounts say the four who attended Anne at the end were young. Ives’ says she was accompanied to the scaffold by her “four wardresses.”
I have read (and cannot tell you off the top of my head who it is who wrote it. Denney maybe?), that twelve year old Katherine Carey was there. I hope she wasn’t there. That is too damn young to watch an aunt die in such a horrible manner. In this era or in any era. Weir says there is no mention of Katherine at court until 1540.

If these four women (I don’t count Kingston as anything more than a spy for her husband) were with her throughout her incarceration and trial, then maybe they did eventually sympathize with her. Two of these women were her aunts. They must have felt something in the end besides contempt. After the trial, if it was the same women, they would have seen Anne’s strength and her conviction. Something that is never mentioned that these women would have seen is the anguish she felt after the death of her brother and the other four men. They would have seen and heard her swear not once but twice, before and after she took the host, that she was innocent. They would have seen her praying all night. They could have eventually come around to sympathize with Anne as they watched her grapple with the horror of what was happening to her and the fact that she was handling it in such a brave manner. Anne’s actions may have swayed their opinion of her in the end.

July 14, 2013
9:46 pm
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Mariette
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Sharon said

There were five women including Lady Kingston who were originally with her when she was first arrested. Shelton, Coffin, Stoner, Boleyn and Kingston. None of them were young, none of them were very fond of Anne, (so it is said) and they were there to spy on her.

Denney claims that Margaret Wyatt was there with Anne. There are no names given as to which ladies were with Anne during her final days. We only know the names of the original five ladies.
There is no reference anywhere that Henry relented after the trial and allowed Anne her choice of attendants, Nor is there reference that Cromwell changed the women. Not all accounts say the four who attended Anne at the end were young. Ives’ says she was accompanied to the scaffold by her “four wardresses.”
I have read (and cannot tell you off the top of my head who it is who wrote it. Denney maybe?), that twelve year old Katherine Carey was there. I hope she wasn’t there. That is too damn young to watch an aunt die in such a horrible manner. In this era or in any era. Weir says there is no mention of Katherine at court until 1540.

If these four women (I don’t count Kingston as anything more than a spy for her husband) were with her throughout her incarceration and trial, then maybe they did eventually sympathize with her. Two of these women were her aunts. They must have felt something in the end besides contempt. After the trial, if it was the same women, they would have seen Anne’s strength and her conviction. Something that is never mentioned that these women would have seen is the anguish she felt after the death of her brother and the other four men. They would have seen and heard her swear not once but twice, before and after she took the host, that she was innocent. They would have seen her praying all night. They could have eventually come around to sympathize with Anne as they watched her grapple with the horror of what was happening to her and the fact that she was handling it in such a brave manner. Anne’s actions may have swayed their opinion of her in the end.

We’ll never know for certain which ladies were with Anne, but I doubt that her niece was with her on the scaffold. If the letter from the Portuguese witness was an invention, I do hope you are right that these women came to realise that Anne was innocent of the charges and sympathised with her. Human nature being what it is though, it’s anyone’s guess. As Natalie wrote: “Kingston’s original letters were damaged in a fire, which broke out at Ashburnham House, Westminster, where the Cotton manuscripts were temporarily being stored, opening the way for speculation and various interpretations about Anne’s final days.”

July 15, 2013
2:27 am
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Anyanka
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Sharon said

Denney claims that Margaret Wyatt was there with Anne. There are no names given as to which ladies were with Anne during her final days. We only know the names of the original five ladies.
There is no reference anywhere that Henry relented after the trial and allowed Anne her choice of attendants, Nor is there reference that Cromwell changed the women. Not all accounts say the four who attended Anne at the end were young. Ives’ says she was accompanied to the scaffold by her “four wardresses.”
I have read (and cannot tell you off the top of my head who it is who wrote it. Denney maybe?), that twelve year old Katherine Carey was there. I hope she wasn’t there. That is too damn young to watch an aunt die in such a horrible manner. In this era or in any era. Weir says there is no mention of Katherine at court until 1540.

Fiction tends to have Margaret Wyatt, Margeret and Mary Shelton and an un-named lady which allows for the writer to place her/his heroine as part of the plot.

eta…sometimes it’s Mary Wyatt., Margaret Wyatt and Margaret Shelton along with the un-named lady.

It's always bunnies.

July 15, 2013
3:19 am
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Sharon, Anyanka, can either of you remember if any non-fiction writer agrees with Susan Bordo that Anne’s ladies were replaced?

Susan Bordo in “The Creation of Anne Boleyn” p. 114 wrote:
By now, the four young ladies who had accompanied her to the scaffold (clearly not the hostile spies who had lived with her in the Tower, but others who were more intimate with her, whom she had been allowed to have with her in her last moments) were weeping.

July 15, 2013
5:40 am
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Anyanka
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Starkey says that the ladies were the four who had attended Anne during her stay in the Tower( Six Wives pp582) but doesn’t give names..

I haven’t got any of my other books at hand…tidying up again..I’m heading to bed but I’ll look up tomorrow..

It's always bunnies.

July 15, 2013
9:46 am
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Anyanka said

Starkey says that the ladies were the four who had attended Anne during her stay in the Tower( Six Wives pp582) but doesn’t give names..

I haven’t got any of my other books at hand…tidying up again..I’m heading to bed but I’ll look up tomorrow..

Thanks AnyankaSmile

These are all I have….do you have any other authors in your collection?

The “six wives” of the following authors:

Starkey – same ladies
ives – same ladies
Loades – doesn’t say
Fraser – young ladies ( she is quoting Antonio de Guarras (envoy to London of the Duke of Alva, some sources say he was a spanish merchant )

Other authors:

Marie Louise Bruce – refers only to “her ladies”
Elizabeth Benger – mentions weeping attendants which included Wyatt’s sister
Susan Bordo – young ladies

July 15, 2013
12:58 pm
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Sharon
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Mariette,
Last night I looked in Denney’s book and there it was. She said that Anne gave Margaret a book of psalms on the scaffold. She doesn’t mention other names. I try to stay away from her book. Way too soapy.
We seem to have pretty much the same books. Wink
Yes, fiction writers always have the women Anne loved with her at her death. It makes for good reading, and I would certainly like to believe that she had friends with her at the end, but the majority of historians leave us with little hope of that. They just don’t know.

July 15, 2013
2:27 pm
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Anyanka
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Weir claims that Katherine carey was appointed to Anne’s service after the trial in Six Wives though in The Lady in the Tower she refutesthat claim.

She also mentions that Margaret Wyatt was one of her attendants on the scaffold but offers no evidence for that nor names any other lady companion.

It would be nice to imagine that Cromwell had enough humanity to allow anne to be with ladies who cared for her rather than his spies but I doubt that he would have allowed Anne to be totally surrounded by her friends since there was still some chance that her careless talk could bring out another nugget of a potential crime which would strengthen the case against her even after she was condemned to death.

It's always bunnies.

July 15, 2013
4:46 pm
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Boleyn
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I’m pretty certain that Lady Kingston would have been with her, after all she would have been with her from the time Anne was taken to the tower.
Did Anne have a preist with her? I am sure I’ve heard the name Matthew Parker in connection with Anne somewhere along the line.

Semper Fidelis, quod sum quod

July 15, 2013
5:56 pm
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Anyanka
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I’m there as well Boleyn. Lady Kingston was almost certainly one of the ladies who accompanied Anne.

Starkey mentions that Lady Kingston had gone to see Lady Mary “fresh from accompanying Anne to the scaffold” (p 596).

Lady Kingston was also whom Anne had begged to go to see Mary and confess Anne’s remorse at how she had treated Mary.

eta…yes there would have been a priest persent. I’m not sure who though. Cramner was certainly not there.

It's always bunnies.

July 15, 2013
9:25 pm
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Sharon
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Weir also says in The Lady in the Tower, “In fact, there is no evidence in any contemporary source to support the claim that Margaret Wyatt was one of them and accompanied Anne to the scaffold.” page 276
She states that in the 18th century, Thomas Grey copied a life of Sir Thomas Wyatt the Elder from one of the unpublished Harleian manuscripts. In that it was claimed that Margaret did attend Anne at her execution.
I think John Skip, who served as her almoner, was with Anne in the Tower. He heard her swear her innocence in front of Kingston on the 18th.
Six days before her arrest, Anne asked Matthew Parker to care for Elizabeth if something should happen to her. He went on to serve Elizabeth as the Archbishop of Canterbury.
Oh I think Kingston was there, I just think she was continuing to spy right to the end. So I don’t count her as one of Anne’s ladies. Petty, I know! Laugh

July 15, 2013
9:47 pm
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Sharon said

Yes, fiction writers always have the women Anne loved with her at her death. It makes for good reading, and I would certainly like to believe that she had friends with her at the end, but the majority of historians leave us with little hope of that. They just don’t know.

I feel that the Portuguese witness and de Guarras were telling the truth in reporting what they had seen. I believe Anne did have young women that she loved with her in her last hours but that Lady Kingston was present on the scaffold. There was no need to gather any more evidence against Anne and she had been cooperative. It ‘s difficult for me to believe that such cold, disapproving matrons could make such an about face and I just don’t see older ladies lugging a heavy arrow chest down the steps of the scaffold and several hundred yards to the chapelConfused

July 15, 2013
9:54 pm
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Anyanka said

It would be nice to imagine that Cromwell had enough humanity to allow anne to be with ladies who cared for her rather than his spies but I doubt that he would have allowed Anne to be totally surrounded by her friends since there was still some chance that her careless talk could bring out another nugget of a potential crime which would strengthen the case against her even after she was condemned to death.

Anyanka, I suspect that Cromwell did allow Anne to have some of the women she favoured at the end. Henry was past caring and since the whole case was a sham anyway, no need to search for further culprits.

July 15, 2013
10:30 pm
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Boleyn said

I’m pretty certain that Lady Kingston would have been with her, after all she would have been with her from the time Anne was taken to the tower.

Boleyn, Sharon, I don’t count Lady Kingston as one of Anne’s ladies either (I’m petty tooLaugh) but I’m sure she was there. Starkey says Lady Kingston was on the scaffold (p. 596) and that she rushed straight off after Anne’s execution to give the news to Princess Mary. Thanks for finding the page Anyanka!Smile

Did Anne have a preist with her? I am sure I’ve heard the name Matthew Parker in connection with Anne somewhere along the line.

Ives wote that Anne had no chaplain with her on the scaffold. (p. 358)

July 16, 2013
1:22 am
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Mariette said

Sharon said

Yes, fiction writers always have the women Anne loved with her at her death. It makes for good reading, and I would certainly like to believe that she had friends with her at the end, but the majority of historians leave us with little hope of that. They just don’t know.

I feel that the Portuguese witness and de Guarras were telling the truth in reporting what they had seen. I believe Anne did have young women that she loved with her in her last hours but that Lady Kingston was present on the scaffold. There was no need to gather any more evidence against Anne and she had been cooperative. It ‘s difficult for me to believe that such cold, disapproving matrons could make such an about face and I just don’t see older ladies lugging a heavy arrow chest down the steps of the scaffold and several hundred yards to the chapelConfused

Embarassed Sorry, I meant to type de Carles not de Guarras!

July 16, 2013
1:57 am
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Anyanka
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Mariette said

Boleyn said

I’m pretty certain that Lady Kingston would have been with her, after all she would have been with her from the time Anne was taken to the tower.

Boleyn, Sharon, I don’t count Lady Kingston as one of Anne’s ladies either (I’m petty tooLaugh) but I’m sure she was there. Starkey says Lady Kingston was on the scaffold (p. 596) and that she rushed straight off after Anne’s execution to give the news to Princess Mary. Thanks for finding the page Anyanka!Smile

Me neither..Lady Kingston may have unbent towards the end but she was still employed as a spy on Anne.

Did Anne have a preist with her? I am sure I’ve heard the name Matthew Parker in connection with Anne somewhere along the line.

Ives wote that Anne had no chaplain with her on the scaffold. (p. 358)

Skip had been with her since may 18th. It’s possible he was part of the procession that left the Queen’s Lodgings to the scaffold.

Warnicke says in her book that Anne was accompanied by 4 ladies and Lord Kingston only. But doesn’t name any of the ladies.

It's always bunnies.

July 16, 2013
2:06 am
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Anyanka
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I know Lady Jane Grey had the Catholic priest Feckenham with her on the scaffold while her husband Guildford Dudley had no priest ( The sisters who would be Queen ..Leander de Lisle p 150-51)

I guess I was expecting all of these kind of exectutions to have a priest on hand.

It's always bunnies.

July 16, 2013
2:45 am
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Anyanka said

I guess I was expecting all of these kind of exectutions to have a priest on hand.

Same here, Anyanka, it is strange that Anne had no priest with her.

July 16, 2013
7:59 am
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Boleyn
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It’s possible that Henry was afraid of what Anne would say if she had a priest present. Yes I know that whatever was said between the confessee, and the confesser was sacrosanct, but Henry couldn’t have a preist running about who may have known some dark secret about him, that the priest may inadvertely bleat to others. It’s very possible of course that Anne simply didn’t want a priest with her.

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