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Brain may live on after decapitation
August 31, 2011
10:10 am
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Anne fan
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I can't remember whether it was Ives or Starkey (working from memory too!) but one of them points out that the private meeting with Cranmer was not her confession – it was about getting her agreement to the annulment of her marriage.

August 31, 2011
11:43 am
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Sharon
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Ives’ claims: the nullification had to be in the works before Cranmer saw Anne on the 16th.  He says it would have been impossible for Cranmer to secure the info from Anne on Tues, 16th, and declare the marriage null and void the next day as he did. By the time Cranmer visited Anne, the anullment was well in hand.

Starkey’s claim:  Henry said Cranmer should go to Anne as her confessor, but Kingston reported to Cromwell that on the 16th Cranmer “was here this day with the Queen, and not in this matter.”  Meaning not as confessor.  Starkey claims Cranmer was there about the divorce. What was said between them is not known.  Cranmer announced the anullment of the marriage the next day.

July 29, 2012
8:17 pm
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Boleyn
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As daft as this sounds it’s quite possible it’s true. I read somewhere a few weeks back, that when a person who has had his/her head chopped off, they can still see and hear for about 10 seconds afterwards.. Hence the reason to why some victims eyes and lips are seen to moving..
The article also said that the holding up of the head after death and saying “Behold the head of a traitor” was not only to show the head to the crowd who very likely could see them but also to show the head it’s own body to let it know that it was now bodyless… Doesn’t bear thinking about does it…
Beheading was what we now consider barbaric but it those days it was a quick and merciful death. In that point I can see their point, burning a person was not only messy but very often it took a long time too and so the person would be more or less tortured to death.. If the wood was damp it could take as long as 3 or 4 hours for a person to die.

Hanging was ok if you broke your neck when you fell but that didn’t always happen so more often than not a person simply was strangled to death.
Guy Fawkes who as we know was sentenced to the full horror of death due to his part in the Gunpowder plot, actually managed to avoid going through the agony that his cohorts had.. Although his arms and legs were pretty damn useless due to being put on the rack, he managed to jump from the scaffold when the rope was placed around his neck thus breaking his neck, although he went through the full horror he was no longer alive to suffer the agony of it.
When Guy was caught, James 1st said to his tower keeper that Guy must be put to the question a euthamisum for torture. Starting with the gentle persuasion and going up in slow degree to the last one of all…It was also said that James himself watched some of these tortures.

Beheading was considered for men as it was the closest they could come to dying in battle. As we know woman were usually burned, but Anne set the president for woman being beheaded instead.
By the way the old gunpowder in a bag round the neck trick, didn’t finish them off quickly, it was just a flash in the pan job and simply scorched a person face.

Semper Fidelis, quod sum quod

April 4, 2015
9:40 pm
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Alexandria
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WilesWales said

I was really replying to Wendy’s message, and should have said so. Please forgive me, it was only a short passage, and I thought it might shed light on the Anne and Mary Queen of Scots legends that have been written both at the time and since then. You’re right though, it does sound like a horror movie after reading it again, but I think it’s still a much better death (and for Anne, bless her heart, the punishment for a woman at that time who committed adultery was burning at the stake of which Anne was extremely afraid and begged Cramner to speak to the King), than burning at the stake. Beheading and burning were the punishments in England at that time. People considered them like we do perhaps concerts or the fair. So I also believe Anne was most courageous in her speech on the scaffold, and showed her class, and thus Elizabeth’s, and restraint at such a most horrifying moment for her. This even after a swordsman was hired from Calais (which Mary I or Bloody Mary lost during her five year reign and it being the last English hold on the continent).

Anne, in her speech, also never admitted her guilt. I have to admire her as she in that she died the innocent woman that she was.

In addition, I’ve always wonder what her confession was to Cramner, but I suppose we’ll never know.

Thank you!Wink

Actually burning at the stake was not the punishment for an ordinary woman who committed adultery, this was not a capital offence, although it was categorised as “petty treason”, being a rebellion against a lawful ruler – in that case her husband. Burning was the usual punishment for a woman convicted of treason (and adultery of a Queen was treason, as endangering the succession), but this was extremely rare, the average traitor was male. The hanging, drawing and quartering which were the male punishment for treason would have been regarded as too offensive to modesty to impose on a woman! However members of the nobility were customarily simply beheaded, and the King had it in his hands to choose either way. Anne must have been frightened indeed that he would decide on burning, but I think that would have made far too much of a show for Henry and would have excited too much sympathy for her – the London mob was notoriously fickle in its loyalties and a rescue might even have been attempted. Her beheading was comparatively private and on Tower Green, within the tower, unlike the men who were beheaded on Tower Hill, outside the walls of the tower.

December 4, 2016
5:55 am
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Anyanka
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December 9, 2016
8:03 pm
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Sharon
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Those were some pretty gruesome stories Anyanka. Loved the one about the headless chickem.

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