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Thursday, April 2, 2009

Seduced by the Tudors

I am very excited to be posting my first blog on Seduced by History today! Isn’t the name, Seduced by History fabulous? And it is so true, especially for me. History has sucked me in, stroked my brain and left me quivering for more since I can remember. It is my comfort zone, and what gets me hot all over.

Yesterday I called up my television network provider and added Showtime to my package, just as I do every year in April, this being the 3rd year in a row. Why you ask? The Tudors.

I know, I know. Some of you right now are cringing…yes it does have some mistakes, some blatantly wrong factoids, but I don’t care. I LOVE the show! I will willingly spend every Sunday evening at 9 pm obsessing over the drama, and then waiting, panting for the next week. Who’s with me?

I have held a fascination with Henry VIII since I was fourteen which grew to include the entire Tudor dynasty, ending with his daughter Elizabeth I.

For today’s blog, I thought I would give you some fun facts about the Tudors!

  • Elizabeth of York (mother of Henry VIII) had the good fortune to be the most royal English queen of all queen’s. How so? She was daughter to the King of England (Edward IV), sister to the King of England (Edward V), neice to the King of England (Richard III), wife to the King of England (Henry VII), and mother to the King of England (Henry VIII). It’s no wonder Henry didn’t want anyone to think he was only king by marrying her.
  • Before marrying Edmund Tudor at the age of 12, Margaret Beaufort, aged 7 married John de la Pole, the son of her guardian William de la Pole. The union was later dissolved when Henry VI deemed she should marry his half brother Edmund.
  • Despite being married four times (the first of which was never consummated) Margaret Beaufort only had one pregnancy and one child, Henry VII, who she bore at the tender age of 13.
  • Prince Arthur was named after King Arthur of Camelot.
  • To listen to a clip of Anne Boleyn’s song “Oh Death Rock Me Asleepe,” which she supposedly wrote while in the Tower of London, visit: http://www.nellgavin.com/boleyn_links/ODeath.htm
  • Despite the fact that Henry VIII was having Anne Boleyn executed, he did decide not to have her burnt at the stake, and instead of an axe allowed her to die by a sword, which she was also allowed to choose her own executioner.
  • Anyone who disobeyed the commands of Henry VIII was arrested for treason and executed…supposedly he executed 72,000 people during his reign. Yikes!
  • Henry VIII’s nickname was Sir Loyal Heart, which he came up with early in his marriage to Catherine of Aragon after she gave birth to their son who only lived a short time. He toted the name in tournaments.
  • Henry VIII was somewhat of a hypochondriac and extremely scared of contracting disease.
  • Henry’s waist went from a lean 32 inches in his prime to 54 inches at his death…He was weighing in at over 300 pounds.
  • In her late teens Mary I, was sent to attend her half sister, infant Elizabeth in her household.
  • Mary I did not want to execute Lady Jane Grey (nine days queen) and in fact refused to do so for about 7 months until her council pressed her hand.
  • Even though she never got married, Elizabeth I did have 26 different marriage proposals to consider (some were repeat offenders :)

If you love the Tudors and want to learn more about this epic dynasty, I am teaching a workshop with Outreach International beginning April 20th. The workshop runs for one month.



Eliza Knight is the author of sizzling historical romance and time travel erotic romance. She is also the author of the award winning blog, History Undressed. She teaches various workshops on writing craft and history. Visit Eliza at www.elizaknight.com or www.historyundressed.blogspot.com


Terry Blain said...

Love the line about 'multiple offenders' about proposal to Elizabeth I.

Glad you love the series. I probably am too much of a purist to really enjoy The Tudors, since I used to teach history and my MA is in Tudor and Stuart England.

But you have to admit, history is full of people and events that no one would believe if you wrote it as fiction.

Eliza Knight said...

Thanks Terry! Isn't it amazing how much drama there is/was in real life?

Emma Lai said...

Thanks for the fun facts Eliza!

Anna Kathryn Lanier said...

Thanks for the fun facts. But this is the first year we'll have Showtime, so I haven't watched the serious yet.

I love history too and recall that when in High School, I wanted to take a history class as an elective, but the cousilor told me I couldn't. I had to take typing or some such class. I was mad.


Holly Greenfield said...

I love the Tudors! I can't wait for the season to start! I like the real history as much as the modified-for-our-screens-history of the tudors. It's all fascinating.

Kimberly Killion said...

I LOVE the Tudors!!!! I especially lurve that Chris Brandon. I can't wait until the next season comes out on DVD.
Thanks for the info...it does make it all a little too real.

Denise said...

Wow great post! I love history myself too so I can totally see your love of it. Thanks for sharing these facts about the Tudors!

Anonymous said...

I love The Tudors, too, although I still gnash my teeth a bit over Henry looking as good as Jonathan Rhys Meyers at a point in time in which Henry was getting a bit...paunchy...and irritable.

I think the show did a very sympathetic portrayal of Anne Boleyn, whom I think history has treated as a bit of a shrew. The actress picked to play her, Natalie Dormer, was just spot on.

FWIW, I don't subscribe to Showtime. I wait until it comes out on DVD, run screaming to Target to buy the season, then watch every episode in practically one sitting. :-)


Hanna Rhys Barnes said...

Elizabeth I is one of my favorites royal ladies. But I found out some interesting things about Henry VIII on my trip to Wales. He was an avid musician and composer. He played every kind of insturment available and wrote hundreds of songs including several requia for the organ. I never thought of Henry as an artist until I heard his music on BBC Radio 3.


Kathryn Albright said...

What great timing for this post! I work with a fun group of gals and all they could talk about yesterday was the new season of the Tudors on Showtime. Made me excited to see it. Being compulsive, I must see the first two seasons before this third one. Thanks for the word about some of the facts being off. Just good to know not to take it all too seriously as "real history". But then, getting the facts right is not always easy in this business of writing history, isn't it?

Thanks for a great post on the Tudors. I'll have to check out your history undressed blog!

Chicks of Characterization said...

Hey Eliza,

I am TUDORS obsessed! I have read every biography about the Tudor dynasty that I could get my hands on. And yes, though not entirely accurate, I love the TUDORS!!! Love it!!! I have seen Season 3's premiere and it was FAB!!! Though I missed the dynamics with Anne and Henry, Jane isn't the demure, thing we all think she is, she's just sly about what she does!!! I can't wait for more!!!!! And if you know of any good biographies, that I may not have read- tell!!! :O)


Eliza Knight said...

You're welcome Emma, glad you enjoyed them!

Thanks Anna! I can't believe they wouldn't let you take the class--that's terrible! I say if a kid wants to take an educational class as an elective, cheer them on. I hope you enjoy the show, you can get the previous seasons on DVD-rent them too I'm sure.

Thanks Holly! I can't wait! Only a couple days left :)

Thanks Kimberly!!! That Brandon is a HOTTIE! The real thing is almost more dramatic than the show, isn't it?

Thanks Denisse! I'm glad you enjoyed it!

Thanks Christine--don't forget he's also like 6 inches shorter than Henry was too! lol, but he's so nice to look at I gloss over the mistakes :) Natalie Dormer was the perfect Anne! I also liked how they made her a little nicer than history has put her out as. I think throughout time things have been dramaticized as far as her evilness goes. I wrote a blog on History Undressed about her: http://historyundressed.blogspot.com/2008/04/anne-boleyn-evil-witch-or-innocent.html
That's the benefit of the DVD's, I have to bite my nails for a week between episodes!

Thank you Hanna! Isn't that amazing? I was surprised when I found that out too. I knew he was a writer/poet/theologist, but I was surprised about the music. I've heard it, and its pretty good.

Thanks Kathryn! I'm excited for you to see the first two seasons, they were fantastic! And you are so right, we all fudge things here and there don't we? Enjoy the Tudors and I hope to see you at HU!

Thanks Andrea! You have no idea how jealous I am you've seen the first show already! I can't wait!!!!