How to Train Your Hawk: A 15th Century English Prioress’ Guide

by Heather R. Darsie This weekend when I was researching for my new book, anticipated in Summer 2021, I stumbled across a curious book from the 15th century. It is called, Book of Hawking, Hunting, and Heraldry. The book was printed in 1496 at Westminster by Wykyn de Worde, who also published an account of Anne Boleyn’s coronation. Even more interesting were the hand-written notes at the … Continue reading How to Train Your Hawk: A 15th Century English Prioress’ Guide

The Curious Case of a Misidentified Portrait of Anne Boleyn

by Heather R. Darsie On 13 April 1929, the Supreme Court of New York heard the curious case of Hahn v. Duveen, in which an art collector  named Mrs. Andree Hahn sued an art dealer named Sir Joseph Duveen for slander. At the heart of the issue was an alleged original painting which Ms. Hahn stated depicted Anne Boleyn and was painted by none other … Continue reading The Curious Case of a Misidentified Portrait of Anne Boleyn

The Poetry of Anne Boleyn: Sir Thomas Wyatt’s Sorrow

by Heather R. Darsie After Anne Boleyn’s startling arrest on 2 May 1536, several other men accused of being her accomplices in treasonous adultery were arrested. Sir Thomas Wyatt himself was arrested, but later released without charges. While he was in the Tower, it is traditionally thought that Wyatt wrote the following poem: Believed to be a late 16th century copy of a portrait of … Continue reading The Poetry of Anne Boleyn: Sir Thomas Wyatt’s Sorrow

The Poetry of Anne Boleyn: Sir Thomas Wyatt’s Anger

by Heather R. Darsie Another poem written by Sir Thomas Wyatt and allegedly about Anne Boleyn shows how upset he was at Anne for losing her. Calling her an old mule and pointing out that she now had a few grey hairs, Wyatt repeatedly calls the subject of the poem a “mule.” Devira Achille, protrait of Anne Boleyn for a lithography project in 2016, via … Continue reading The Poetry of Anne Boleyn: Sir Thomas Wyatt’s Anger

The Poetry of Anne Boleyn: Sir Thomas Wyatt’s Infatuation

by Heather R. Darsie There was and yet is the rumour that Sir Thomas Wyatt, Tudor-era poet and diplomat, was in love with Anne Boleyn. Wyatt was born in 1503, making him either three years younger or four years older than Anne Boleyn. Wyatt entered Henry VIII’s service in 1526. It was right around this time that Henry’s desire for Anne was becoming known at … Continue reading The Poetry of Anne Boleyn: Sir Thomas Wyatt’s Infatuation

The Poetry of Anne Boleyn: Second Poem

by Heather R. Darsie A second poem is attributed to Anne Boleyn, and perhaps written shortly after her trial on 15 May 1536. Despite bravely defending herself against slanderous claims, Anne was found guilty of adultery and incest. It was obvious to her that the charges were a way for Henry to rid himself of Anne Boleyn so Henry could marry the more passive Jane … Continue reading The Poetry of Anne Boleyn: Second Poem

The Poetry of Anne Boleyn: First Poem

by Heather R. Darsie Anne Boleyn, Queen Consort of England and mother of Elizabeth I, was arrested on 2 May 1536 for allegedly committing adultery whilst married to Henry VIII of England. Anne’s trial came on 15 May, where she was found guilty of the charges. On 19 May 1536, Anne Boleyn was executed. During her time in the Tower, Anne may have written two … Continue reading The Poetry of Anne Boleyn: First Poem

Anne Boleyn and Henry VIII: The Last Love Letter

by Heather R. Darsie Henry VIII of England’s last love letter to Anne Boleyn shows how close and far the couple felt to achieving their purpose of an annulment for Henry from Katharine of Aragon, which would pave the way for Anne to marry Henry. Henry is also chiding Anne just a bit, referencing her “inutile and vain” thoughts, or baseless flights of fancy. He … Continue reading Anne Boleyn and Henry VIII: The Last Love Letter

Henry VIII’s Seventeenth Love Letter to Anne Boleyn

by Heather R. Darsie The seventeenth love letter from Henry VIII of England to Anne Boleyn was likely written in late September 1528 because it mentions the arrival of the papal legate, Cardinal Lorenzo Campeggio. Campeggio was acting legate in Rome for Pope Clement VII after Henry’s nephew through his current marriage to Katharine of Aragon, the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V, sacked Rome in … Continue reading Henry VIII’s Seventeenth Love Letter to Anne Boleyn

Love Letter Sixteen from Henry VIII to Anne Boleyn

by Heather R. Darsie The sixteenth love letter from Henry VIII to Anne Boleyn was written around the middle of September 1528. Pope Clement VII, captured by the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V in June 1527 after the sacking of Rome in May, was still Charles V’s prisoner. The Pope did not return to Rome until October 1528. When Henry wrote this letter, he was … Continue reading Love Letter Sixteen from Henry VIII to Anne Boleyn