December 1st – a historical advent

henry-iIt’s that time of year again.  Sadly for me Cromwell appears to have received no interesting mail on December 1 1535 which is probably just as well for the rest of Tudor England.  I would have to say that in 1532 Sir Anthony Willoughby was suffering with the gout so sent his wife to talk to Cromwell because he wanted Cromwell to speak to the king on his behalf.  Whilst in 1533 Sir Christopher Garneys wrote to Cromwell thanking him “For his loving letters. Is eased of the unquietness he had by reason of a stroke given to a lewd person. Did it not out of malice, but for due correction. Cannot recompense Cromwell’s kindness, but will send him by next ship “a piece of wine of Gravys.”

Consequentially I have had to look a bit further afield for the historical equivalent of a chunk of chocolate.

Henry I died on December 1 1135.  He’s the king who popped off having indulged in a surfeit of lampreys. He’s also the chap with the huge number of illegitimate children but only one legitimate son who inconveniently drowned when the White Ship sank.  Henry then forced his barons to recognise his daughter Matilda as the heir.  Of course they promptly changed their minds upon his demise and selected her cousin Stephen.  This resulted in England’s first civil war. The war raged for nineteen years – the years “when Christ and his apostles slept.”  Cheery or what.

300_2511351Coming forward in 1420 this was the day when Henry V marched into Paris – good for the English less amusing for the French.

More positively  and somewhat outside my usual period but rather more positively the first female British MP, Lady Nancy Astor, took her place in the House of Commons. In America, in 1955, Rosa Parks famously started the bus boycott when after a long day she refused to give up her seat on the bus to a non-coloured passenger.

‘Henry VIII: December 1533, 1-10’, in Letters and Papers, Foreign and Domestic, Henry VIII, Volume 6, 1533, ed. James Gairdner (London, 1882), pp. 599-613. British History Online http://www.british-history.ac.uk/letters-papers-hen8/vol6/pp599-613 [accessed 19 November 2016].

2 Comments

Filed under December, Kings of England, On this day...

2 responses to “December 1st – a historical advent

  1. Sir Kevin Parr, Baronet

    So its Christmas soon and all the dead we speak of in history abound like the rattling ghost in Dickens spooky tale. I once spent a Christmas in France and visited Chenon castle. Here the Christmas of Henry 11 and his sons came back in my mind as i walked the same floors as they did in 1180. Only thing is how jolly cold it must have been even in summer but in winter ice forms on the lips. Frozen they may have been in that dark dire stone walled castle. The Astors ,especially Nancy Astor knew my uncle and i read her letter to him . He was the chap whom left me my baronetcy when he died aged 90.i love researching dead peoples lifes .i said in my book on line THE TIME DETECTIVE, that by doing so we give the dead a voice for them to tell us the truth. So dear lady have a really wonderful Christmas and think of more interesting facts to record.

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