1 October 1553

The Coronation of Queen Mary I of England takes place.

This day in history, 1st October 1553, was a very important day in history because England’s first crowned queen regnant, i.e. a queen ruling in her own right, was crowned at Westminster Abbey.

Mary I, daughter of Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon, became England’s first queen and although many people believe that her reign was one of failure and bloodshed, she achieved much in her short reign and I do believe that she paved the way for Elizabeth I.

10 July 1553

Lady Jane Grey takes the throne of England.

On the afternoon of Monday 10th July 1553, Lady Jane Grey, her husband, Guildford Dudley, her parents and Guildford’s mother arrived by barge at the Tower of London, having travelled from Syon. They were greeted there by Guildford’s father, John Dudley, Duke of Northumberland, and other councillors, before they made their way through the Tower gates, Jane and Guildford walking under the canopy of state.

As the procession reached the Tower there was a gun salute and trumpets blasted to silence the crowd. Two heralds then proclaimed that Lady Jane Grey was now Queen of England before they moved on to proclaim their message in Cheapside and Fleet Street. At Cheapside, a boy declared that it was Mary who was the rightful queen and he was punished the next morning by having his ears cut off.

On this very same day, a letter arrived from Mary informing the council that she was the rightful heir to the throne, not Jane, and demanding their support. As Jane was proclaimed Queen in London, Mary was gathering support for her cause in East Anglia, Jane was going to have a fight on her hands.

19 July 1553

Lady Jane Grey is replaced as Queen of England by Mary I of England after only nine days on the throne.

6804,Lady Jane Dudley (née Grey)

Tragic Lady Jane Grey is remembered in British history as the monarch with the shortest reign… just nine days.
Why was Lady Jane Grey’s reign as Queen of England so short?

Lady Jane Grey was the eldest daughter of Henry Grey, Duke of Suffolk and she was the great-grand-daughter of Henry VII.She was proclaimed Queen after the death of her cousin, the protestant King Edward VI, son of Henry VIII. She was actually fifth in line to the throne, but was his personal choice as she was a Protestant.Edward’s half-sister Mary, Henry VIII’s daughter with Catherine of Aragon, was actually next in line for the throne but as a devout Catholic, was out of favour.

Edward wanted to keep England firmly Protestant and he knew that Mary would take England back into the Catholic faith.John Dudley, Duke of Northumberland, was Protector to King Edward VI. He persuaded the dying young king to will his crown to Lady Jane Grey, who by coincidence just happened to be the Duke’s daughter-in-law.

Edward died on 6th July 1553 and Lady Jane ascended to the throne with her husband Lord Guildford Dudley at her side – she was just sweet sixteen.

Lady Jane was beautiful and intelligent. She studied Latin, Greek and Hebrew and was fluent in French and Italian.
Queen Mary IHowever the country rose in favour of the direct and true royal line, and the Council proclaimed Mary queen some nine days later.

Unfortunately for Lady Jane, her advisors were grossly incompetent, and her father was partly responsible for her untimely execution as he was involved in an attempted rebellion.This was the Wyatt rebellion, named after Sir Thomas Wyatt, who was an English soldier and a so-called ‘rebel’.

In 1554 Wyatt was involved in a conspiracy against the marriage of Mary to Phillip of Spain. He raised an army of Kentish men and marched on London, but was captured and later beheaded.After the Wyatt rebellion was quashed, Lady Jane and her husband, who were lodged in the Tower of London, were taken out and beheaded on 12th February 1554.
Guildford was executed first on Tower Hill, his body taken away by horse and cart past Lady Jane’s lodgings. She was then taken to Tower Green within the Tower, where the block was waiting for her.

10 July 1553

Lady Jane Grey takes the throne of England.

6804,Lady Jane Dudley (née Grey)

Jane was nominal queen of England for just nine days in 1553,as part of an unsuccessful bid to prevent the accession of the Catholic Mary Tudor.

Jane was born in the autumn of 1537, the daughter of the Marquess of Dorset. Through her mother, Lady Frances Brandon, she was the great-granddaughter of Henry VII. At around the age of 10, Jane entered the household of Henry VIII’s last queen, Katherine Parr where she was exposed to a strongly Protestant, academic environment. Jane developed into an intelligent and pious woman.

In October 1551, her father was created duke of Suffolk and Jane began to appear at court. There, real power lay in the hands of the fiercely Protestant Duke of Northumberland, who acted as regent to the young king, Edward VI. In May 1553, Jane was married to Northumberland’s son, Lord Guildford Dudley.

It became clear that Edward was dying, and Northumberland was desperate to prevent the throne passing to Edward’s half-sister and heir, the Catholic Mary Tudor. Northumberland persuaded the king to declare Mary illegitimate, as well as Edward’s other half-sister Elizabeth, and alter the line of succession to pass to Jane.

Edward died on 6 July 1553. Four days later, Jane was proclaimed queen. However, Mary Tudor had widespread popular support and by mid-July, even Suffolk had abandoned his daughter and was attempting to save himself by proclaiming Mary queen. Northumberland’s supporters melted away and Suffolk easily persuaded his daughter to relinquish the crown.

Mary imprisoned Jane, her husband and her father in the Tower of London. While Suffolk was pardoned, Jane and her husband were tried for high treason in November 1553. Jane pleaded guilty and was sentenced to death. The carrying out of the sentence was suspended, but Suffolk’s support for Sir Thomas Wyatt’s rebellion in February 1554 sealed Jane’s fate. On 12 February, she and her husband were beheaded. Her father followed them two days later.