Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Question from Kenneth - Anne Boleyn's last days in the Tower

I am thinking about writing a play about Anne Boleyn's last few days in the Tower. How much freedom would she have had, could she move about or was she confined to a room or rooms? Would she be allowed visitors or any other contact with the outside world? Any information or insight you could give me would be appreciated. Thank you.

Saturday, September 03, 2016

Question from Julia - Anne Boleyn book receommendations

I'm 22, from Brazil and I'm studying Anne Boleyn for a theatre project. At first I wanted to find a diary or something she wrote but, unfortunately, according to my little research (which is beggining now) she does not have one.

I found some letters and it is really going to help but I wanted to ask if you could recommend some books about her. I found out that there's a million books but I don't know what I should read because I don't know what's true and what's not or in which books I could trust. It is really important to have all the information right.

I tried to find it in google or ask people but no one knows what to say.

Sorry if my english is kind of a mess and thank you so much for this website!

[Book recommendation posts are frequently asked questions, but it never hurts to post some again with all the new works coming out every year! - Lara]

Monday, August 29, 2016

Question from KG - Henry VIII destined for the Church

Is it true that Henry VII planned for his son Henry to become archbishop of Canterbury? Are there any sources for this rumour? Thank you.

[This is one of those questions that I could have sworn was asked before, and while I did find a thread that included it - see below - I couldn't find a question directly about it. So here is one! - Lara]

Previous thread:

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Question from Allyson - Follow-up questions to previous post

Some follow up questions to my previous ones.

Who was rich in the 1520s? Was it only royalty? Furthermore, if it wasn't how could one become rich in such a time.

Was there a guild for book making/selling? What sorts of people might have been in this profession?

Because cities were mainly self-governing what sorts of things were people persecuted or outcast from society for? Did they organized their own courts and trials? Who might have led the self-governing, or was it more mob like.

I also came across an interesting event called Dancing Mania. It seems people don't really know much about what it really was although it was documented enough for it to be excepted as a real event. How isolated was this? Do we know how people reacted to such an event?

Royalty and royal blood was obviously very important in that time, so how well did people track their royal blood? I assume very well, and how were certain relations to the royal family acknowledged. Furthermore, and more importantly, how were illegitimate children of the royal family cared for and addressed?

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Question from Allyson - Resources for c. 1520 England

Hello, I'm doing research for a novel I'm writing which takes place in or close to 1520 Reading, England. It is fiction but I want to have the details as factual as possible. Some questions that have come up.

What were the rolls of viscounts at the time? Who were they, what did they do, how did they live, who were they above and under?

Can you tell me anything or refer me to something that will give me information about the industries, jobs, etc. of the time (specifically the book and printing industry)

Another question I have is about the levels of law enforcement at the time. What were offenses to the law? How were they reported, enforced, investigated, etc.?

Also, a lot of information goes around about how the common people lived. Where could I look for an educational, factual representation of everyday life in the 1520s.

Thank you.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Question from Camilla - Edward Seymour, the "Good Duke"

Hello, I am 17, currently researching Edward Seymour 1st Duke of Somerset for my A Level History coursework and looking to reassess the title of "Good Duke" which has long lingered over Seymour's reputation.

I am finding it particularly difficult to find written correspondence originating from Seymour himself (which would help to shed light upon his personal character) and/or any sources from the general populous (around the period 1547-1549) as to the common consensus on his character/protectorship. Would it be possible for any help in direction towards possibly useful sources? Is there any trace of the Duke within folk tales/song?

My main question however is if this "Good Duke" title originated within posthumous historical thought or whether the common people genuinely saw the Lord Protector in such a light- and more importantly, whether this corresponded in actuality to Somerset's protectorship/personality. In short, was his title duly granted?


Sunday, August 14, 2016

Question from KG - Henry VIII fasting during Advent and Lent

I read that Henry VIII fasted during Advent and Lent. Our image of him is that of a consummate overeater - would he really have had to keep to the same rules of fasting as everyone else? And what exactly would have been expected in terms of "fasting"?

Saturday, July 09, 2016

Question from KG - Baptism of Henry VIII's children who died young

Do we know if Henry VIII's children, such as the Henry, duke of Cornwall born in 1513, or the stillborn/short-lived children he had with Catherine of Aragon and Anne Boleyn who weren't named, were baptised? If so, do we have any descriptions of the proceedings?

Thursday, July 07, 2016

Question from Arthur - Grief in the 15th century

Can anyone tell me how grief was dealt with in 15th century? I know death was a lot more prevalent but I assume human emotions and feelings of loss and grief have not altered all that much over time that even though people harden to death might not be as sensitive. I think that loosing a beloved spouse,child, parent, or close sibling must of still be painful for them.

So how did the people around the griever? Especially in the case of men I presume that people would just expect him to pull himself together and be stoic about it?

I think I remember they had mourning periods but what I am really trying to find out is what emotional support grieving people got from family and friends.

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

Question from Arthur - Courtiers time away from Court

Can anyone tell me when Courtiers such as Kings grooms and ushers etc in the reins of Henry 7th and 8th would go home? As in have enough time to return to country estates?

Would you ever have a situation where they were 'not allowed' to return home? Were there specific things they had to be at court for?

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

Question from KG - Henry VIII's godchildren

Do we know the names of all/any of Henry VIII's godchildren, and how he fulfilled this role?

Monday, July 04, 2016

Question from KG - Dicing and bowling in Henry VIII's reign

I have read that dicing and bowling were considered immoral in Henry VIII's reign, yet he and his courtiers enjoyed these activities. Would they have been judged for this, or was it socially (and religiously) acceptable?

Sunday, July 03, 2016

Question from KG - Tudor monarchs and Mass

How often would the Tudor monarchs have gone to Mass and what would the services have been like? Can anyone direct me to a really good source please? This is for a university project.

Question from Mary the Quene - Reading of the charges against George Boleyn

My question is regarding the reading of the charges against George Boleyn during his trial.

He (George Boleyn) was instructed to NOT read aloud the statements he and his sister allegedly made concerning the virility of Henry VIII.
In a swipe at the powers railroading him towards the scaffold, George Boleyn intentionally, and in a clear loud voice, spoke the comments for alllllll those courtiers and ghoulish court-haunters to hear.

Does anybody know if Henry VIII learned that his shame had been made ever so public?

Friday, July 01, 2016

Question from Michael - Nudity in Tudor England

Dear All

Can anyone tell me how nudity was seen in Tudor England. Was it a criminal offence? Were people prosecuted for it? was it socially acceptable behind closed doors?


Monday, June 27, 2016

Question from Arthur - Inheritance scenarios

Hi, I am working on a novel set in 1495. I have a couple of questions that would help me work out a couple of plot details.

First, I read all the previous post on titles in Abeyance and I have a question that wasn't directly covered directly i don't think. In my story there is a baron who knows he is dying, he has 4 daughters, daughter 1 is 19 but is physically and mentally disabled, the youngest 2 daughters are just little 11 and 8 the 2nd daughter is 16. The baron knows he has no sons, so he and his best friend, an Earl with 4 sons the youngest of which the youngest is unmarried, decided to marry their kids together so that the baron can hopefully get a grandson. So that happens, but this baron has a younger brother whom he despises. He does not want the title and/or castle to pass to his brother. My question is that in this situation and assuming the daughter is pregnant when the baron dies would the title be held for the child or go to the barons brother?...

My second question is somewhat related to above...assuming the Earls youngest son is 16/17 when the baron dies would he be allowed to manage any land inherited by his wife, or would an elder male of his family have manage it for him?

Thursday, June 02, 2016

Question from begob - Elizabeth I assassination attempt

Trying to find information on The Barge Incident, an attempt on the life of Elizabeth I.

I found this:
"Be of good cheer, for you will never want, for the bullet was meant for me, though it hit you."

Elizabeth I (1533-1603), Queen of England (1558-1603). As quoted in The Sayings of Queen Elizabeth, ch. 13, by Frederick Chamberlin (1923). "To one of her boatmen who was shot when within six feet of her on her barge in the Thames. She took off her scarf and gave it to him to bind over his wound, which was bleeding profusely."

Chamberlin's book is not a reliable source, and my searches turned up nothing for the state papers.

Help please.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Question from Sarah - Henry VIII and St. Augustine

I have heard that Henry VIII really admired the works of St. Augustine and that Augustine was his favourite theologian. Is there any evidence of this? Were Augustine's ideas in vogue at the time?

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Question from Sarah - Sack of Rome and Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn

Rome was sacked by Charles V's troops in 1527, around the time Henry VIII was promising himself to Anne Boleyn. Would some (perhaps including Henry?) have seen the Sack of Rome as proof God did not favour the Pope anymore? Could these two events be connected at all?

Monday, April 18, 2016

Question from Jan - Bathroom use at court

How and where did people at court go to the bathroom in Tudor England? There were apparently large crowds of people at court with very complicated clothes. What were the sanitation facilities?

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Question from Fr Elijah - Monastic involvement in the establishment of the Anglican Church

I am a Roman Catholic Benedictine monk and priest. I am researching very specific questions for which I have not been able to locate materials. Any citations,source documents, or general direction would be greatly appreciated:

1-During the time of Henry VIII before his break with Rome, were there any Bishops serving who had been monks (Benedictine or Cistercian)? I realize (a) not all monks or Abbots were priests, and (b) most bishops were previously secular priests. So, I am inquiring if you know of any monastic priests who had become or were serving as Bishops under Henry VIII?

2-Based on the answer to #1, did any of those previously monastic Bishops become Anglican in support of Henry VIII?

3-Were there any previous monastics who served Thomas Cramner during the early development of the Anglican Church?

4-I know that under the reign of Mary that many monks returned from the Continent who had previously faced the dissolution. Did she appoint any monks as Bishops?

5-Based on the answer to #4, did any remain and support Elizabeth?

So, in a nut shell, I am looking to see if there was any direct monastic involvement in the establishment of the Anglican Church, its hierarchy, or the development of its Book of Common Prayer.


Saturday, April 02, 2016

Question from Kris - Abeyance and inheritance in Elizabeth's reign


I have a couple questions about abeyance and inheritance of titles/lands in Elizabeth's reign.

The short story is, I need a female to be holding land, but not the title that goes with the land. I've been operating as if the title has been in abeyance for hundreds of years, but I could be wrong, & want to check what I'm doing.

If a title went into abeyance because there were no male heirs, the property would have been passed down to the female(s) heirs, correct? Issue/heirs of that female line would continue to inherit the land, but not the title? How would those land-holders have be referred to? Lord/Lady? If so, of what were they lord/lady? Were they still considered noble? Allowed "honorary" titles?

What if there were NO heirs? How would the land get distributed/held in that case? Was it still "in abeyance"? Something else, w/ diff legal connotations? Or was the title (and land?) just subsumed back to the Crown, to be redistributed at will?

Thank-you so much!!


Question from Jackie - Anne Boleyn, Henry VIII and Thomas Cromwell

My questions concern Anne Boleyn/Henry VIII/Thomas Cromwell. Researching this time period has become a hobby of sorts for me. There is a lot of contradictory info out there so I figured it would be interesting to ask questions here to hear different points of view. The questions are really more of learned opinion than fact-based in nature...

1) Did Henry VIII have a hand in not allowing the marriage between Anne and Harry Percy?

2) Is it your opinion that Anne truly loved Henry or was she more so seduced by the power and glory of being a Queen? I know there is also the factor of her family's drive for power and wealth as well, but I often wonder if she truly loved the King apart from all the benefits associated with him.

3) If not for the strong influence of Cromwell, would the Reformation have occurred as it did in England? The winds of reform had already reached England, but prior to Anne and Cromwell those who spoke against the Church were charged with heresy. Cromwell appeared to not only want to serve his King but also further his own religious agenda. But back to my first question here...Do you think Henry would have thought to declare himself Head of the Church and break from Rome on his own?

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Question from Audreanna - Anne of Cleves' life in Germany before marriage

Hello, my name is Audreanna and I recently got a part in a renaissance festival as Anna von Kleve, or as she is more widely known, Anne of Cleves. I have done some research although, not a lot and I have found to very different stories. One being that she loved her family and she didn't want to leave her home in Germany. Another story is that she hated her family and that she was abused by her brother. I was just wondering which one is the more accurate story or if they both have some truth in them.

Friday, March 11, 2016

Question from Justine - Catherine of Arago and Cloth of Silver

Hi, I'm sure I read somewhere that Catherine of Aragon preferred Cloth of Silver and as less of this fabric was produced it ultimately worked out to be more expensive and exclusive than Cloth of Gold. Another annoyance for Henry to tot up I think. Is this correct?