I can't find any direct evidence that "Young Bess" actually was on the Great Harry (Harry Grace a Dieu), although her shipboard presence in the movie made good cinematic and dramatic sense.In her book The Portable Queen, Mary Hill Cole states that "In July 1559, Elizabeth called out the people of London for a muster at Greenwich ... Immediately after the Greenwich muster, Elizabeth made her first visit as queen to a royal ship. The court went to Greenwich and had a banquet aboard the Elizabeth Jonas there ..."This doesn't precisely answer the question as to whether Elizabeth as princess was ever aboard the Great Harry, but it might indicate that her first shipboard experience only took place when she was queen. I don't think that members of the English royal family in the 16th century made "public relations" or "good will" visits to the Navy or other institutions on quite the same scale and frequency that they do today. However, as the historian Jeri L. McIntosh (From Heads of Households to Heads of State), has pointed out, we actually don't have a lot of information about the childhood and adolescence of Elizabeth Tudor, or her precise whereabouts at specific times.
Post a Comment