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Tudor Minute January 26, 1554: Mary Writes a letter

Hey, this is Heather from the Renaissance English History Podcast, and this is your Tudor Minute for January 26.

Today in 1554 Mary I wrote a letter to her half sister Princess Elizabeth, summoning her to court. She had been tipped off about Wyatt’s Rebellion, and suspected that Elizabeth had been involved. The letter didn’t directly threaten Elizabeth, but it did make clear that for her own protection she should come to court in case the rebellion spread.

Elizabeth responded in a letter saying, “Although by neglect of my duty, most noble Queen, I might incur blame for not having sent your Highness any news of my doings since I left your Court, yet I trust that your Grace, of your noble nature and inclination, will excuse me and attribute this shortcoming to its true causes. I have been troubled, since my arrival at my house, with such a cold and headache that I have never felt their like, and especially during the last three weeks I have had no respite because of the pain in my head and also in my arms.” The royal physicians were dispatched to make sure Elizabeth wasn’t faking it, and reported that she was indeed sick.

Of course this rebellion would wind up being the undoing of Lady Jane Grey, to whom Mary wanted to show leniency. It also led Elizabeth to spend time in the Tower while Mary sorted out whether or not she was involved.

That’s your Tudor Minute for today. Remember you can dive deeper into life in 16th century England through the Renaissance English History Podcast at englandcast.com.

Link: Mary I and choral music