May 11 – Queen Anne Boleyn and her rather busy lovelife

Posted By on May 11, 2022

On this day in history, 11th May 1536, nine days after Queen Anne Boleyn’s arrest, the Grand Jury of Kent met to rule on the alleged offences committed by Anne and her alleged lovers in the county.

In the video below, I look at the dates, places and crimes, cited in the indictment. If we’re to believe the grand jury, Queen Anne Boleyn was a very busy lady!

And on this day three years earlier, 11th May 1533, in the lead up to Anne’s coronation – happier times! – Henry VIII made himself an enemy of the English clergy by accusing them of being traitors.

Why? What was going on? What happened next?

1 thought on “May 11 – Queen Anne Boleyn and her rather busy lovelife”

  1. Christine says:

    Poor Anne Boleyn and the men who were to be condemned through her, all of them were to be murdered simply so the king could marry and begat a son on another woman, was the shedding of so much blood justified so Henry could pass his crown to a prince? According to the king and Cromwell it was, England’s realm her future had to be secure, if their six deaths could keep England safe from civil war which must surely follow if Henry was to leave his realm to a daughter, then so be it, people had been sacrificed before, the legal loopholes which Henry V111 had put in place to legitimise his marriage to Anne had to be undone, and there could be no risk to the legality of his next marriage, it does indeed leave a bitter taste in the mouth and the ludicrous nature of the charges against the queen especially the revolting one of incest, shows all to clearly the lengths the king and his chief minister would go to to rid himself of a woman he had once loved so passionately, to commit adultery with one man would have been sufficient grounds for divorce or an annulment, but in order to make her appear so lascivious so immoral and depraved, they had to add four more to the list and include her own brother, yet the so called evidence was not there and yes such a case would have been thrown out today, these jurors of Kent and Middlesex as I have said before were merely carrying out the kings orders, they must have squirmed a little themselves as they garnered the carryings one of the queen and her so called lovers, one her own musician, indeed her household was made out to be like a brothel full of loose living and decadent and something which the King of France would no doubt have admired, the blabbing of Lady Worcester who was a member of the queens household really set the wheels in motion by telling her brother a lot worse goes on in the queens apartments, after he admonished her for her affair with another courtier, her brother of course was no friend of the queens and informed Cromwell, Lady Worcester herself it is said could have been the kings mistress once and yet she was close to the queen who had left her some money, Lady Worcester a married woman must have been saddened afterwards that she helped bring about the fall of her mistress who had only been good to her, it is she who was the main informant of the queen and it is possible Cromwell interrogated her after what her brother disclosed, and maybe she was bullied in other words, Cromwell or one of his men put words into her mouth, whatever the truth he had Smeaton terrified into confessing, and Norris had been taken to the Tower the day of the joust, then Anne trying to work out why she was in the Tower in a high state state of anxiety mentioned talking to Weston, so poor Weston was arrested, meanwhile George her brother was in the fortress charged with misprision of treason and he too as well as the other prisoners must have been shocked and horrified, the queen was said to have seduced them one by one and even her lowly musician could not escape her amorous advances, it was said they were all jealous of each other in vying for her affection, Mark she gave gifts of money and bought fine saddles for his horses the courtiers were angered by him, because he strutted about the court dressed in finery he had had made for him with the queens money, so was the queens household really like that, ? Anne was a flirt and possibly to boost her confidence when the king took a mistress she flirted more with the men, maybe some inappropriate words were said a tit for tat thing, but after all courtly love reigned supreme and yet she had overstepped the boundaries when she mentioned to Norris he would marry her if the king were dead, really with those very unwise comments then Lady Worcesters conversation with her brother, Cromwell was given the chance to bring down the queen and her faction, yet the charges of her adulteries with the five men are not backed up by real evidence, on several occasions wether it be at Hampton Court Greenwich or Whitehall, either she the queen was with the king, or she was absent or the men were, for example one which I feel is especially disgusting towards her, is said to have been when Anne had not long given birth to Elizabeth and she knew after all, the sacred ritual of being churched, Anne as we know was deeply pious even her enemies knew that, childbirth was risky to mother and baby, afterwards the mother would abstain from sex for several weeks and when recovered from the ordeal she would go to church and thank god for a safe delivery, yet according to one charge she incited Norris to copulate with her not long after the birth and as Alison Weir writes, she was probably still bleeding, they really were out to condemn her and yet as we also know, none of her ladies were charged with helping her in her adulteries, this one single fact also renders the charges invalid, a queen was never alone and so to meet with a lover in secret she would have had to have the assistance of one or at least two of her ladies, Catherine Howard had Lady Rochford and several others to assist her in meeting with Thomas Culpeper, and on one occasion she was nearly found out when the king decided to visit her, so how was it possible Anne could have slept with so many men for the three years she was married without being found out? Why should these courtiers also allow themselves to be seduced having long been in service to the king and knowing their very lives their careers would be ruined on discovery, Norris especially was the kings old friend he was engaged to the queens cousin, Weston was young maybe just a year or so older than Smeaton, he had not been married long and had a baby son, there was Brereton a rich landowner and elderly in his fiftieth year , no gay young gallant, and who was not one of the queens household, yet it is believed Cromwell found him a nuisance politically and had the chance to rid himself of him, Smeaton who could have had a young boys crush on the queen and who was the only one to confess, one cannot rely on the confession of someone who had mental and possibly physical pressure exerted on him, and also as Claire suggests had the chance of either a horrific death or an easy one, what would one do in ones position? all these men were in service to the king and had much to lose, yet in an instant their very lives all they held dear were to be extinguished like a puff of smoke, as was the mistress they served.

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