Posted in Biographies

The astronomer with the silver nose: Tycho Brahe

Tycho Brahe was a Danish nobleman and the most skilful astronomer of the sixteenth century. He was paid by King Frederick II of Denmark to observe the heavens from his underground observatory with the naked eye. It would be thirty years until the telescope would be invented.

Tacho before and after his life changing injuries

Tycho watched the movements of the planets more precisely than anyone in Europe had done before him. His discoveries were astonishing and dangerous  because in the sixteenth century it was commonly believed that the universe had not changed since the beginning of time. To believe otherwise could lead to charges of heresy for which the punishment was often death.

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Posted in From around the web, Uncategorized

‟Loving of my Husband“: Jane and Guildford Dudley — All Things Robert Dudley

She detested Guilford – he was indeed a spoilt, conceited and disagreeable young man – and she told her father that she would not marry him. Her obedience was forced by a beating, and … Guilford made no secret of his dislike for his bride.1 Although expressing a widely held view, this description of the […]

via ‟Loving of my Husband“: Jane and Guildford Dudley — All Things Robert Dudley

Posted in Christmas

Christmas gifts and decorations for Tudor lovers…

Historic Royal Palaces is an independent charity that looks after the Tower of London, Hampton Court Palace, the Banqueting House, Kensington Palace, Kew Palace and Hillsborough Castle. All profits from retail sales enable them to continue to conserve these magnificent palaces for future generations. www.historicroyalpalaces.com

I am not affiliated with HRP and I do not recieve comission for sales. I just love the palaces and the shop.

The most magnificent of all the Tudors – King Henry VIII was king of England from 1509 to 1547. Henry VIII is one of England’s most famous kings, mainly due to his six wives and his cruel behavior towards them. This Henry VIII glass tree decoration has been blown by mouth from glass and is beautifully hand decorated with a thin layer of silver plate added to the inside. This traditional process has been unchanged for more than 100 years and the handcrafted nature of this Christmas ornament makes each decoration truly unique. Presented in a box, the Henry VIII tree decoration would make a lovely and unique gift for lovers of the Tudor period. £22.99

 

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Posted in Crime and Punishment

The persecution of witches: The King who believed in werewolves and influenced Shakespeare…

In 1597 a Royal pamphlet was published about werewolves, the classification of demons, witches and black magic. It explained and endorsed the reasons for persecuting witches in a Christian society under the rule of  law. It included methods of discovering witches and told the ‘misinformed populace’ of the practices, the implications and dangers of sorcery.

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Posted in Biographies

The world’s first secret Service and it’s Master…

William Cecil was the masterminds behind the world’s first secret service. His spy network included codebreakers, Priest hunters and Catholic double agents. These were utilised to protect the Queen, country and England’s protestant faith from Catholics and other ‘terrorists’.

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Posted in Tudor Paintings

Symbolism in Tudor portraits

In the Tudor era, it was well known that a dog represented faithfulness and that the Tudors were represented by a greyhound. This hidden meaning would be as familiar to a Tudor as a car logo or a symbol for a top brand of shampoo is to us today.

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Posted in Places to visit, Tudor Medicine

St. Thomas’ Hospitals dark past…

 

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St Thomas’ hospital today

Saint Thomas’s hospital in London was founded in around 1106 and was named after Thomas Becket  who was made a saint in 1173. Becket was an extremely popular saint, who people believed had miraculous healing powers so he was a good choice to name a hospital after. Thomas was born in London in 1118 and became an ordained priest in 1162 and he later became an archbishop. Becket  began to excommunicate his opponents in the church and this angered the king, Henry II.

It began when three Archbishops crowned the heir apparent. It was common in medieval times to crown the King’s heir in the lifetime of his father to prevent disputes about the succession after the king’s death. This was in breach of Thomas’s privilege to fulfil this role and so he excommunicated the priests who took his place at the ceremony.

Becket was murdered in Canterbury Cathedral in 1170 by four of the king’s knights who misinterpted the King’s angry words, ‘Who will rid me of this meddlesome priest?’ thinking that it was a direct order to kill Thomas of Canterbury.

 

 

The site of St. Thomas’s death (Note the four swords above where Becket was kneeling in prayer)  and the marker of his shrine in Canterbury Cathedral

The early medieval hospital was named after Saint Thomas  and was run and staffed by Augustinian monks and nuns. The hospital performed three important functions. Hospitality was given to poor travellers and pilgrims, a home was provided for the destitute and aged, and the sick were nursed. Catholics believe that when they treat those who are despised by society they are in reality showing God their love for him. This is based on the teaching of Jesus in Matthew 35-40:

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