Henry VIII’s love letters to Anne Boleyn

Earlier this month there was a Tudor Treasures exhibition in Cambridge’s St John’s College. This was a fantastic opportunity to see original Tudor items that otherwise areΒ unavailable for viewing. The main reason I wasΒ so excited was the inclusion of Henry VIII’s love letters to Anne Boleyn.

Henry VIII’s love letters to Anne Boleyn

Unfortunately due to Henry’s purge of all things relating to Anne after her execution, very few sources remain that could enlighten us about her life and her relationship with Henry. However, these love letters survived, kept safe in the Vatican archives whilst her responses were destroyed in England. Despite only Henry’s words surviving, they offer us a glimpse of her early relationship with the king and help us discover whether she was the one who refused to share his bed until she was queen or whether it was Henry who, concerned about the appearance of his morality and legitimacy of his case against Rome in his quest for divorce, refused to risk creating the male heir he so desperately wanted out of wedlock.

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Wars of the Roses: Stormbird | Conn Iggulden | a review

stormbirdRed vs White. Lancaster vs York. These words spring to mind when discussing the infamous Wars of the Roses. The name given to this turbulent period is somewhat romantic, and encourages thoughts of chivalric knights fighting for their houses, and ultimately the throne. The name however, was not used until much later, made famous by the Elizabethan playwright Shakespeare. In actuality, the battles that dominated the latter half of the Fourteenth Century were much bloodier, chaotic and family orientated than the romantic name suggests. Cousin vs cousin, uncle vs nephew, the old Plantagenet bloodlines fighting each other for the right to rule England.

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