Monday, September 7, 2015

On This Day in Elizabethan History: The Birth of the Future Queen Elizabeth I

The birth announcement of the Princess Elizabeth, 1533. Photo from Let Them Grumble on Tumblr.
On this day in 1533, Princess Elizabeth Tudor was born at Greenwich Palace to her mother, Queen Anne Boleyn, and her father, King Henry VIII. The King had been assured that a prince's birth had been fortold by the stars, so the birth announcements had been prepared welcoming a prince. When Elizabeth arrived, much to Henry's surprise, two "ss" were hastily tacked onto the word 'prince' before they could be sent out. 

To learn about:

- The time and circumstances under which Queen Elizabeth was likely conceived

- Anne Boleyn's preparation for the birth of her child

- Henry VIII's reaction to Elizabeth's gender

- Elizabeth's christening

and more, please read our feature-length BeingBess article on the birth of the future Queen Elizabeth I.


Happy 482nd Birthday, Queen Elizabeth I!

Elizabeth Tudor found her way into my life long ago as a child, something which I believe was no accident. 
She continues to inspire me on a daily basis, for which I am eternally grateful.

It is my mission in life to teach others about the remarkable Queen Elizabeth I, and to get others excited about history. 

Thank you for sharing in this journey with me. 


Friday, September 4, 2015

On This Day in Elizabethan History: The Death of Elizabeth's Love, The Earl of Leicester

"His last letter", in the National Archives in England. Picture acquired through Wikimedia Commons. Image public domain.

On this day in 1588, Queen Elizabeth I's longtime love and confidante, the man she called a "personage so dear unto us" in a letter to the Earl of Shrewsbury, Robert Dudley, the Earl of Leicester, died. Leicester had been ill for quite some time, and probably had been suffering from stomach cancer. Elizabeth was, by all accounts, devastated by his death, and kept the final letter he sent to her by her bed until her own death, where it was discovered in 1603. On it she had written, "His Last Letter". To learn more about how Elizabeth dealt with the passing of her favorite, please read our feature-length BeingBess article on the topic of Leicester's death. Also, for further reading on the complex relationship of Elizabeth and Leicester, we recommend the definitive dual biography 'Elizabeth & Leicester: Power, Passion, Politics', by historian Sarah Gristwood.