Exotic Animals in the Tower of London

Guest article by Cassidy Cash The Tower of London was first established by William the Conqueror in 1066 as a show of power, an act of defense, and a gateway into the city of London.  Close to 200 years later in the year 1200, the Tower of London became the place to store exotic animals. Why exotic animals? Well, it seems that gifts of exotic beasts from far away places is the way reigning heads of state compliment one another. A collection of animals to form a [More]

Ten things you didn’t know about Gertrude Courtenay, Marchioness of Exeter

Ten things you didn't know about Gertrude Courtenay, Marchioness of Exeter Written by Sylvia Barbara Soberton Great by birth, greater by marriage.  Gertrude's father, William Blount, Fourth Baron Mountjoy, was an influential member of the Tudor court, a respected humanistic scholar and patron of learning. He served as chamberlain in the household of Queen Katharine of Aragon, married four times and corresponded with Erasmus.  In October 1519, Gertrude married [More]

Anna of Denmark: Queen, Patron, and Matriarch

Written by Dr. Steven Veerapen Historically, Anna (or Anne) of Denmark has not received a great press. To too many, she is an unknown quantity - a name, glimpsed as an adjunct to King James: a non-speaking background figure, literally, seen in dramas as varied as 2017's Gunpowder and Disney's direct-to-video Pocahontas 2. She has, moreover, enjoyed unfavourable comparisons to her predecessors as queens consort, especially of England. Whilst bookshop and library shelves [More]

Lady Katherine Grey: Tudor Heiress

According to the last will and testament of Henry VIII, the throne of England should have been inherited by the descendants of Lady Katherine Grey when Henry's younger daughter, Elizabeth I, died on 24 March 1603. A somewhat obscure figure in Tudor history, Katherine was the second daughter of Henry, duke of Suffolk and his wife Frances, the elder daughter of Mary Tudor, queen of France and subsequently duchess of Suffolk. Mary was the youngest surviving daughter of the first [More]