NewsOn this day in 1540 King Henry VIII married his fifth wife, Catherine Howard. Henry showered his new bride with lavish gifts but it was not sufficient to keep her faithful to the ageing Henry and on 13th February 1542 she was executed for treason. Only four years earlier, her cousin, Anne Boleyn met the same fate at the hands of a French executioner. Both lay now buried in St Peter ad Vincula in the Tower of London.
On the morning of Wednesday, 17th May 1536 George Boleyn, Henry Norris, Francis Weston, William Brereton and Mark Smeaton were led out of the Tower under close guard and beheaded on a high scaffold on Tower Hill. Large crowds had gathered to see the bloody end of these once great men- among the onlookers stood a number of courtiers.On this day, 22 August 1485, the penultimate battle of the 'War of the Roses' was fought between the House of Lancaster and the House of York. Richard III, the last king of the House of York, was killed in battle. His opponent, Henry Tudor, victorious- beginning the reign of the Tudors and marking the end of the Plantagenet dynasty begun in 1154.The Tudors would reign until the death of Elizabeth I in 1603.On this day, 8th August, 456 years ago (1553) King Edward VI was buried in the Henry VII Lady Chapel at Westminster Abbey. He was only 15 years old and king for 6 years. It is thought that at the same time as his burial, Queen Mary attended mass for his soul at the Tower where Lady Jane Grey was already a prisoner.The cause of Edward's death is not certain but Tuberculosis is suggested by some historians.