September 6 – Martin Luther sends a pamphlet to the pope

| September 6, 2022

September 6 – Martin Luther sends a pamphlet to the pope

On this day in Tudor history, 6th September 1520, in the reign of King Henry VIII, the famous reformer Martin Luther sent his pamphlet “On the Freedom of a Christian” (also known as “A Treatise on Christian Liberty”) to Pope Leo X. In this pamphlet, Luther emphasised the “two-fold nature” of Christians as saints and […]

April 8 – A cat dressed as a priest and the Second Martin

| April 8, 2022

April 8 – A cat dressed as a priest and the Second Martin

On this day in history, 8th April 1554, there was an act of religious defiance in London. Someone who didn’t like Queen Mary I’s religious changes hanged a cat on the gallows at Cheapside. The cat was dressed as a Catholic priest and was holding a piece of paper to represent that communion wafer. It […]

3 January – Martin Luther is excommunicated, and two very different days for Anne of Cleves

| January 3, 2022

3 January – Martin Luther is excommunicated, and two very different days for Anne of Cleves

On this day in Tudor history, 3rd January 1521, Pope Leo X excommunicated Reformer, German priest and professor of theology Martin Luther from the Catholic Church. In this talk, I explain what led to Luther’s excommunication, what happened when Luther was called to the Diet of Worms, and what happened next to this famous Reformer.

6 March 1536 – The Dissolution of the Monasteries

| March 6, 2017

6 March 1536 – The Dissolution of the Monasteries

In February 1536, a parliament which has become known as “The Reformation Parliament” was recalled and met until it was dismissed on 14th April 1536. It had first sat in October 1529 and is referred to as the Reformation Parliament because it was responsible for passing the legislation which led to the break with Rome […]

6 October 1536 – William Tyndale’s Execution

| October 6, 2014

6 October 1536 – William Tyndale’s Execution

The 6th October 1536 is the traditional date given for the execution of reformer, scholar and Bible translator, William Tyndale. Tyndale, whose works include The Obedience of a Christian Man (a book Anne Boleyn shared with Henry VIII), had incurred the wrath of Henry VIII after the publication of his The Practyse of Prelates” in […]

2 October 1528 – This book is for me and all kings to read

| October 2, 2014

2 October 1528 – This book is for me and all kings to read

On 2nd October 1528 The Obedience of the Christian Man and How Christian Rulers Ought to Govern was published by English Reformer and Bible translator William Tyndale. Amongst other things, Tyndale’s book said that rulers were accountable to God and not the Pope. Anne Boleyn owned a copy of this book, as well as Tyndale’s […]

23 March 1534 – Parliament Passes the First Act of Succession

| March 23, 2014

23 March 1534 – Parliament Passes the First Act of Succession

On this day in 1534, the First Act of Succession was passed by Parliament. It vested the succession in the heirs of Henry VIII and his second wife, Anne Boleyn, and it required subjects to swear an oath, the Oath of Succession, renouncing any foreign authority and recognising Anne Boleyn as Henry VIII’s wife and […]

Helen Castor’s Medieval Lives: Birth, Marriage, Death – Episode 3: A Good Death

| October 24, 2013

Helen Castor’s Medieval Lives: Birth, Marriage, Death – Episode 3: A Good Death

Last night I watched the third and final episode of historian Helen Castor’s series “Medieval Lives: Birth, Marriage, Death”, and this week Castor focused on death in the medieval era. Here is an article based on the notes I wrote as I watched it. Castor began the episode by taking us back to 3rd November […]