Places to visit, Prophecies, Tudor Places

The prophecies of Mother Shipton…

England’s oldest visitor attraction is a cave with a genuine petrifying well inside. The well turns every day objects into stone by an entirely natural phenomenon caused by the high mineral content of the water. In Mother Shipton’s lifetime the well was seen as supernatural.

There are many legends about the prophecies of Mother Shipton, who was born and lived in the cave. She is said to have foretold the defeat of the Spanish Armada, the death of Cardinal Wolsey and the end of the world. Even when threatened with burning Mother Shipton refused to change her prophecies.

Continue reading “The prophecies of Mother Shipton…”

Places to visit, Reformation, Sex, Tudor Places

Selling sex, beer and horses at Saint Paul’s Cathedral…

Old Saint Paul’s Cathedral had a reputation for beggars and thieves. The beautiful nave which was called ‘Paul’s walk’ was considered a good place to socialize, gossip, do business and to pick up prostitutes.

Continue reading “Selling sex, beer and horses at Saint Paul’s Cathedral…”

London, persecution, Places to visit, Reformation, Tudor London, Tudor Medicine

St. Thomas’ Hospital’s dark past…

 

download (30)
St Thomas’ hospital today

Saint Thomas’s hospital in London was founded in around 1106 and was named after the popular Saint Thomas Becket, who it was believed had miraculous healing powers. The hospital community was shattered by Henry VIII’s policy of the forced dissolution of the monasteries. Thomas Cromwell’s deputy, Richard Layton, visited the ‘bawdy’’ hospital in 1538. The master, Richard Mabott, was accused of selling the hospital’s silver and exacting excessive fees from patients. On 14th January 1540, the hospital was surrendered to the King and the monks were pensioned off.

Continue reading “St. Thomas’ Hospital’s dark past…”

Anne Boleyn, Crime and Punishment, Henry VIII, Justice, Original Letters, Places to visit, Tudor women

Anne Boleyn’s letter from the Tower, May 6th 1536.

It is alleged that a copy of this letter was found amongst Thomas Cromwell’s possessions after his execution. Its authenticity is doubted because Anne was closely guarded and it would have been difficult to conceal such a letter. However the letter does have a ring of authenticity:

Continue reading “Anne Boleyn’s letter from the Tower, May 6th 1536.”

London, Mysteries, Places to visit, Tudor London

London’s heart of stone? Excalibur? King Arthur’s sword in the stone? What is the London stone?

The London Stone was originally situated on the south side of medieval Candlewick Street (Now Cannon Street) opposite the west end of St Swithins church. This was very close to the homes of Henry VII’s financial agents Edmund Dudley and his next door neighbour Richard Epson. Both were falsely executed as traitors in 1510 and were Henry VIII’s first scapegoats for his father’s unpopular policies.

Continue reading “London’s heart of stone? Excalibur? King Arthur’s sword in the stone? What is the London stone?”

Life in Tudor times, London, Places to visit, Sex, Tudor Jobs, Tudor London, Tudor Places

Sex, brothels and prostitution…

If you had ‘goose bumps’ in the 16th century it did not mean you had little bumps appearing on your arms because you were cold. Having ‘goose bumps’ was Elizabethan slang for having venereal disease. There were thousands of prostitutes or doxies as they were known, in Norwich, Exeter, York, London and elsewhere. In fact there were far more prostitutes in Elizabethan London than there are now in modern-day Birmingham or any other large British town in 2018. The most notorious stews, trugginghouses or brothels were in Southwark on the south side of the river Thames. Continue reading “Sex, brothels and prostitution…”