According to Thomas Wyatt, George Boleyn, Lord Rochford (brother of Anne Boleyn), said at his execution:-

“Trust in God, and not in the vanities of the world, for if I had so done, I think I had been alive as ye be now.

Men do common and say that I have been a setter-forth of the word of God and one that hath favoured the Gospel of Christ; and because I would not that God’s word should be slandered by me, I say unto you all that if I had followed God’s word in deed as I did read it ans set forth to my power, I had not come to this.

Truly and diligently did I read the gospel of Christ Jesus, but I turned not to profit that which I did read; the which had I done, of a surety I had not fallen into so great errors.

Wherefore I do beseech you all, for the love of our Lord God, that you do at all seasons hold by the truth, and speak it, and embrace it.”

Sir Francis Weston said at his execution:-

“I had thought to have lived in abomination yet this twenty or thirty years and then to have made amends. I thought little it would come to this.”

Wyatt reported that Sir Henry Norris “sayed almost nothinge at all” and that Sir William Brereton said:-

“I have deserved to die if it were a thousand deaths. But the cause whereof I die, judge not. But if ye judge, judge the best.”

Mark Smeaton did not retract his confession, but said:-

“Masters, I pray you all pray for me for I have deserved death.”

Anne Boleyn’s execution speech shows her dignity, courage and strong religious faith:-

“Good Christian people, I have not come here to preach a sermon; I have come here to die, for according to the law and by the law I am judged to die, and thereof I will speak nothing against it. I am come hither to accuse no man, nor to speak of that whereof I am accused and condemned to die, but I pray God save the King and send him long to reign over you, for a gentler nor a more merciful prince was there never, and to me he was ever a good, a gentle, and sovereign lord.

And if any person will meddle of my cause, I require them to judge the best. And thus I take my leave of the world and of you all, and I heartily desire you all to pray for me.”

(Speeches taken from Joanna Denny’s “Anne Boleyn: A New Life of England’s Tragic Queen”)

15 thoughts on “Execution Speeches”

  1. Bettianne Yahraus says:

    I am a Tudors Junkie!!! My addiction began about 40 years ago when I was a young girl and found an old book in the library about King Henry and his wives. Since that time I haven’t been able to get enough about this period in history (I even became a teacher just so I could take more history classes). Enough about me.
    The current treatment of the Henry VIII’s story on Showtime with Jonathan Rhys Meyer in the title role is wonderful, to say the least. I do however have a complaint, why only eight weeks per year??? I want more NOW!!! I don’t want to wait until next spring. Also, when do they plan to fatten up the old boy? From what I know, he was pretty chubby by the time he married Anne of Cleves.
    I love your website 🙂
    Bettianne in Ohio

    1. admin says:

      Welcome, Bettianne! Thank you for your compliments on the site. I too love “The Tudors” – Despite its many inaccuracies, it does a great job of bringing that period of history to life and making us empathise with the characters.

    2. Hannah says:

      I totally know how you feel. Anne Boleyne is my favorite person in the whole world. I’m only 12 and I’m already addicted. I have seen all of the Tudor shows and I’m longing for more. I plan to reasearch until I know everything I need to know about this time period. 😀

      1. Hannah Goldstein says:

        She’s my favourite person too! 🙂 I’m 15 and I’ve been researching her and the Tudor Dynasty for about 3 years, yet there’s always more information to find! I hope to study History at University, and it’s all because of Anne Boleyn..
        Who knew someone born in the 16th Century could have an effect on someones life in the 21st? 🙂 xx

      2. Milly Bell says:

        I’m also 12 and I love the Tudors! I find the period fascinating, glamorous and also incredibly troubling, and I hope to have many more opportunities to learn more about the era! I recently watched The Other Boleyn Girl which fueled my passion for History, and since then I have scoured this website – it is almost always open on my computer!

  2. Jessica D J says:

    I just got what I call “Fancy Cable” and I LOVE the Tudors!
    I am obsessed right now about his entire time frame.

    What inaccuracies are there?

    What books/movies should I get that are as accurate as can be?

    Thank you for making this website!

    Please anyone e mail me with info. :

  3. CG says:


    I’m new to the site, but LOVE the Tudors as well.
    I just thought I would throw it out there (not sure if it’s listed on the website or not…again, I’m new on here.) but there are several booked written by Phillipa Gregory that are fantastic and bring the Tudors period to life! It is like ”The Tudors” series – but only a million times better!

    Start with ”The Constant Princess” (it’s about Katherine of Aragon (Henry’s first wife)), then ”The Other Bolyen Girl” ( Queen Anne ), then ”The Bolyen Inheritance”.

    There are several other books that follow written by Phillipa Gregory, but the three listed above are specific to the Tudors. Absolutely fantastic and I’m sure once you pick up the first one, you’ll be hooked! 🙂


    1. Pamela says:

      I would also recommend you read Eric Ives, Alison Weir, David Starkey, Tracy Borman, and other works by professors and historians. While Philippa Gregory and the Tudor series are fun, they tend to present things that are greatly debated and present them as fact (the basis for Queen Anne’s execution-a virtual hotbed of debate-as an example) and as a result, contemporary sources and the facts we do have become greatly misconstrued. The Tudor series and Ms. Gregory tapdance with validity, I would definitely not cheat myself. What really happened-and the many, many debates, discussions and blogs-is definitely worth finding out.

    2. Anonymous Person says:

      Phillipa Gregory is not a very good source, I’m afraid. There are so many inconsistencies about The Other Boleyn Girl. There are so many reasons there is multiple videos on the Anne Boleyn Files YouTube channel explaining this. I would suggest that YouTube channel for sources, by the way. Claire posts a lot of good videos and gives links to accurate biographies.

  4. Julie says:

    I also love the Tudors and Anne Boleyn was my favorite because she changed history! the most influential Queen of England as far as I am concerned. Also, he daughter Elizabethreigned for a long time!!!

  5. Sara says:

    Hello! My name is Sara Cline. My maiden name is Sara Dabel. I have recently found out that I am a descendant of King Henry the 8th, and Anne Boleyn. Since then I can’t stop researching. I’m loving your site. I just stumbled across it through Google and I can’t stop reading. Thank you!

    1. Shamuel Kohen says:

      Honey, you can’t be their descendant.

    2. emily says:

      Sorry to burst your bubble but the only child of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn who lived was Elizabeth I who had no children.

  6. Leena Ranta Hyvinkään ex pappi says:

    Yes, I am also

  7. Anonymous Person says:

    Hi, when it comes to execution speeches for Anne Boleyn, I found what I always though to be a contemporary account by Edward Hall which is a tiny bit different to yours. I really find Anne interesting and is it possible if somebody come find out if this is a contemporary source?

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