On this Day in History ... 07 May

07 May is in May.

1527 Visit of the French Ambassadors

1533 Marriage of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn

1537 Bigod's Rebellion

1544 Burning of Edinburgh

1603 Knighting at Theobalds House

1625 Death of James I

1676 Treaty of Nimeguen

1685 Popish Plot

1697 Invitation to William of Orange from the Immortal Seven

On 07 May 721 Bishop John of Beverley died.

On 07 May 762 Bishop Frithwald died.

On 07 May 1196 King Philip II of France (age 30) and Agnes Andechs Queen Consort France were married. She by marriage Queen Consort of France. She the daughter of Berthold Andechs Duke Merania and Agnes Rochlitz. He the son of Louis VII King Franks and Adèle Blois. He a great x 2 grandson of King William "Conqueror" I of England.

On 07 May 1202 Hamelin Warenne 4th Earl Surrey (age 73) died. His son William Warenne 5th Earl Surrey succeeded 5th Earl Surrey 1C 1088 and inherited his estates including Conisbrough Castle [Map]. He undertook further building work including the Great Hall and service buildings in the Inner Bailey. Maud Marshal Countess Norfolk and Surrey (age 8) by marriage Countess Surrey.

On 07 May 1243 Hugh D'Aubigny 5th Earl Lincoln 5th Earl Arundel died at Canelli. He was buried at Wymondham Abbey [Map]. Earl Lincoln 1C 1141 extinct. His nephew John Fitzalan 6th Earl Arundel (age 20) succeeded 6th Earl Arundel Sussex. Cicely D'Aubigny (age 35) and her husband Roger de Montalt inherited Castle Rising Castle [Map].

On 07 May 1427 Thomas la Warr 5th Baron de la Warr (age 75) died. His nephew Reginald West 6th Baron De La Warr 3rd Baron West (age 31) succeeded 6th Baron De La Warr 1C 1299.

Visit of the French Ambassadors

Calendars. May 7. [1527] Sanuto Diaries, v. xlv. pp. 194–198.

105. Gasparo Spinelli, Venetian Secretary in London, to his brother Lodovico Spinelli, in Venice.

On the 4th instant all the ambassadors, with the exception of the Emperor's, were summoned to Greenwich, where, in the presence of the King and the chief personages of the Court, the French ambassador, the Bishop of Tarbes, delivered an oration, which was answered by the Bishop of London, who, on the morrow, Cardinal Wolsey being unable to officiate from indisposition, sang mass with the usual ceremonies; after which at the high altar, where the missal was opened by the Cardinal, the French ambassadors swore in his hands (“in mano dil R~mo Cardinal”) to observe the perpetual peace now concluded with the King of England, he on his part swearing in like manner.

Two of the ambassadors, namely the prelate and the soldier, dined with the King, the others dining together apart.

On rising from table they went to the Queen's apartment, where the Princess (age 11) danced with the French ambassador, the Viscount of Turenne, who considered her very handsome (“molto bella”), and admirable by reason of her great and uncommon mental endowments; but so thin, spare, and small (“cosi magreta et scarma et picola”) as to render it impossible for her to be married for the next three years.

Then yesterday1 there was a joust, the challengers at the tilt (“al campo”) being four2, the competitors (“concorrenti”) sixteen, each of whom ran six courses; a very delectable sight, by reason of the prowess of the knights. The joust ended with the day, not without rain, which rather impeded the jousting.

The King and the Queens3, with some 200 damsels (“damigelle”), then went to the apartments which I informed you in a former letter were being prepared [on one side of the list-yard at Greenwich] for the reception of the French ambassadors, the rest of the company following them. The site adjoined the other chambers from whence the King and the nobility view the jousts. They were but two halls, about thirty paces in length, and of proportional height and breadth. The centre of the ceiling of the first hall was entirely covered with brocatel of no great value, but producing a good effect; the walls were hung with the most costly tapestry in England, representing the history of David; and there was a row of torches closely set, illuminating the place very brilliantly, being ranged below the windows, which were at no great distance from the roof. The royal table was prepared in front of the hall, with a large canopy of tissue (“soprarizo”), beneath which was the King, with the Queens, his wife and sister, at the sides. Then came two long tables, at one of which, on the right-hand side, were seated the French ambassadors and the Princes, each pairing with some great lady. At the other table, to the left, the Venetian ambassador and the one from Milan placed themselves, with the rest of the lords and ladies. At no great distance from the two tables were two cupboards, reaching from the floor to the roof, forming a semicircle, on which was a large and varied assortment of vases, all of massive gold, the value of which it would be difficult to estimate, nor were any of them touched; silver gilt dishes of another sort being used for the viands of meat and fish, which were in such variety and abundance that the banquet lasted a long while.

The door of this hall was in the form of a very lofty triumphal arch, fashioned after the antique, beneath which were three vaulted entrances; through one passed the dishes for the table, through the other they were removed, and on each side of the centre one, which was the largest, stood two enormous cupboards bearing the wine to be served at table. Over the triumphal arch was a spacious balcony for the musicians, bearing the arms of the King and Queen, with sundry busts of Emperors, and the King's motto, “Dieu et mon droit” and other Greek (sic) words. Could never conceive anything so costly and well designed (“ben ordinata”) as what was witnessed on that night at Greenwich.

On rising from table all were marshalled, according to their rank, along a corridor of no great length to the other hall, which was of rather less size than the first. The floor was covered with cloth of silk embroidered with gold lilies. The ceiling, which was well nigh flat, was all painted, representing a map of the world (“mapamondo in Alpa forma”), the names of the principal provinces being legible; there were also the signs of the zodiac and their properties (“le loro proprietà”), these paintings being supported by giants. Along the sides of the hall were three tiers of seats, each of which had a beam placed lengthwise, for the spectators to lean on, nor did one tier interfere with the other. Above these tiers were in like manner three rows of torches, so well disposed and contrived as not to impede the view.

Within the space for the spectators, on the right-hand side, in the first tier, the ambassadors were placed, in the second the Princes, in the third those to whom admission was granted, they being few. On the opposite side, in the same order, were the ladies, whose various styles of beauty and apparel, enhanced by the brilliancy of the lights, caused me to think I was contemplating the choirs of angels; they, in like manner, being placed one above the other. Two-thirds of the distance down the hall, an arch of a single span had been erected, its depth being five feet and a half [English measure], all gilt with fine gold, the inside of the arch being decorated with a number of beautiful figures in low relief. The magnificence of this arch was such that it was difficult to comprehend how so grand a structure could have been raised in so short a space of time. In the centre, to the front (“nel fronte nel mezo”), stood the royal throne (“soglio”), on which the King sat, the two Queens being seated below at his feet.

All the spectators being thus methodically placed, without the least noise or confusion, and precisely as pre-arranged, the entertainment commenced. One thing above all others surprised me most, never having witnessed the like any where, it being impossible to represent or credit with how much order, regularity, and silence such public entertainments proceed and are conducted in England. First of all, there entered the hall eight singers, forming two wings, and singing certain English songs; in their centre was a very handsome youth alone, clad in skyblue tatfety, a number of eyes being scattered over his gown; and having presented themselves before the King, the singers then withdrew in the same order, there remaining by himself the youth, who, in the guise of Mercury, sent to the King by Jupiter, delivered a learned Latin oration in praise of his Majesty; which panegyric being ended, he announced that Jupiter, having frequently listened to disputes between Love and Riches concerning their relative authority, and that being unable to decide the controversy, he appointed his Majesty as judge, and requested him to pronounce and pass sentence on both of them. Thereupon Mercury departed, and next came eight young choristers of the chapel, four on each side; those to the right were all clad in cloth of gold, much ornamented, and the first of them was Cupid (“Amor”); the others to the left were variously arrayed, and their chief was Plutus (“la Richesa”); in the centre walked one alone, in the guise of Justice, who sang.

In this order they presented themselves to the King, before whom Justice commenced narrating the dispute between the parties, in English, and desired Cupid (“Amor”) to begin with his defence, to which Plutus (“la Richeza”) replied, each of the choristers on either side defending their leaders, by reciting a number of verses. The altercation being ended, Cupid and Plutus determined that judgment should go by battle, and thus, having departed, three men-at-arms in white armour, with three naked swords in their hands, entered from the end of the hall, and having drawn up under the triumphal arch, an opening was made in its centre by some unseen means, and out of the arch fell down a bar, in front of which there appeared three well-armed knights. The combat then commenced valiantly, man to man, some of them dealing such blows that their swords broke. After they had fought some while, a second bar was let down, which separated them, the first three having vanquished the others, fighting with great courage; and the duel (“duello”) being thus ended, the combatants quitted the hall in like manner as they had entered it. Thereupon there fell to the ground at the extremity of the hall a painted canvas [curtain], from an aperture in which was seen a most verdant cave (“antro”) approachable by four steps, each side being guarded by four of the chief gentlemen of the Court, clad in tissue doublets and tall plumes, each of whom carried a torch. Well grouped within the cave were eight damsels of such rare beauty as to be supposed goddesses rather than human beings. They were arrayed in cloth of gold, their hair gathered into a net, with a very richly jewelled garland, surmounted by a velvet cap, the hanging sleeves of their surcoats (“camisa”) being so long that they well nigh touched the ground, and so well and richly wrought as to be no slight ornament to their beauty. They descended gracefully from their seats to the sound of trumpets, the first of them being the Princess, hand in hand with the Marchioness of Exeter (age 24). Her beauty in this array produced such effect on everybody that all the other marvellous sights previously witnessed were forgotten, and they gave themselves up solely to contemplation of so fair an angel. On her person were so many precious stones that their splendour and radiance dazzled the sight, in such wise as to make one believe that she was decked with all the gems of the eighth sphere. Dancing thus they presented themselves to the King, their dance being very delightful by reason of its variety, as they formed certain groups and figures most pleasing to the sight. Their dance being finished, they ranged themselves on one side, and in like order the eight youths, leaving their torches, came down from the cave, and after performing their dance, each of them took by the hand one of those beautiful nymphs, and having led a courant together (“menata una chorea”) for a while, returned to their places.

Six masks then entered. To detail their costume would be but to repeat the words “cloth of gold,” cloth of silver,” &c. They chose such ladies as they pleased for their partners, and commenced various dances, which being ended, the King appeared. The French ambassador, the Marquis of Turrene, was at his side, and behind him four couple of noblemen (“signori”), all masked, and all wearing black velvet slippers on their feet, this being done, lest the King should be distinguished from the others, as from the hurt which he received lately on his left foot when playing at tennis (“allo palla”) he wears a black velvet slipper. They were all clad in tissue doublets, over which was a very long and ample gown of black satin, with hoods of the same material, and on their heads caps of tawney velvet. They then took by the hand an equal number of ladies, dancing with great glee, and at the end of the dance unmasked; whereupon the Princess with her companions again descended, and came to the King, who in the presence of the French ambassadors took off her cap, and the net being displaced, a profusion of silver tresses as beautiful as ever seen on human head fell over her shoulders, forming a most agreeable sight. The aforesaid ambassadors then took leave of her; and all departing from that beautiful place returned to the supper hall, where the tables were spread with every sort of confection and choice wines for all who chose to cheer themselves with them. The sun, I believe, greatly hastened his course, having perhaps had a hint from Mercury of so rare a sight; so showing himself already on the horizon, warning being thus given of his presence, everybody thought it time to quit the royal chambers, returning to their own with such sleepy eyes that the daylight could not keep them open.

As the Bishop of Tarbes is departing tomorrow morning in haste, I will not be more diffuse. He will be accompanied by Master Poyntz [Sir Francis Poyntz] and Clarencieux, king-of-arms, to do what I wrote in a former letter. On their departure each of the ambassadors received a gold cup from his Majesty.

London, 7th May 1527. Registered by Sanuto, 3rd June.


Note 1. 6th May, according to the date of Spinelli's letter. In Hall's Chronicle (pp. 721, 722, ed. London, 1809), mention is made of the mass at Greenwich on Sunday, 5 May, and of the jousts, but of these last he does not state the precise date, giving, however, the names of the challengers, and adding that whilst they tilted “yt rained apace.”

Note 2. Namely. Sir Nicholas Carew (age 31), Sir Robert Jernyngham, Sir Anthony Browne (age 27), and Nicholas Harvy. (See Hall, as above.)

Note 3. Catharine (age 41), and Mary Queen Dowager of France (age 31).

Marriage of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn

Letters and Papers 1533. 07 May 1533. Add. MS. 28,585, f. 244. B. M. 454. Count Of Cifuentes to Charles V.

Was told by the Pope that he had letters from his Nuncio [in England] of April 12, saying, that the King had married "la Anna (age 32)" publicly, with all the usual ceremonies. A few days previously he had convoked the Estates for this purpose, and many opposed the King in both Houses (?) (asi de unos como de otros); and this was in the first Parliament. At the second the same thing happened, and the King rose to his feet, bidding those of his party help him, as he wished to marry. The opposition of the other party was at last overcome by money, promises, and threats. To give a colour to what the King wished to do, it was determined that all cases of tithes, marriages, or wills should be decided in the kingdom before ordinary judges, of whom the chief was the principal Archdeacon (archidiano mayor) of London1. The judge of the first and second appeal was the archbishop of Canterbury, with certain prelates. The King summoned the Archbishop, and told him that he should marry (casasse) this Anna. The dukes of Norfolk and Suffolk were sent to intimate this to the Queen.

Note 1. William Clyff, LL.D.


Bigod's Rebellion

On 07 May 1537 Thomas Moigne (age 27) was hanged, drawn and quartered at Lincoln [Map].

Burning of Edinburgh

After 07 May 1544 Edward Clinton 1st Earl Lincoln (age 32) was knighted by Edward Seymour 1st Duke Somerset (age 44) at Edinburgh [Map].


On 07 May 1553 Albert Frderick Hohenzollern Duke Prussia was born to Albert "The Elder" Hohenzollern I Duke Prussia (age 62) and Anna Maria Guelph Duchess Prussia (age 21).


On 07 May 1587 Richard Newport 1st Baron Newport was born to Francis Newport (age 32) and Beatrice Lacon.

On 07 May 1592 Christopher Wray Chief Justice (age 68) died. He was was buried in St Michael's Church, Glentworth [Map]. Monument to Sir Chistopher and his wife Anne Girlington. Elizabethan Period. Elephant and Castle Crest. Pink, white and blue-grey marble. Two recumbent effigies, Sir Christopher above and a little behind his wife, he in red robes, black cap and thick ruff; she in black robes, large ruff and hood. Four kneeling white marble daughters below. Ornate tomb recess above with flanking pink marble columns with white and gold Corinthian Capitals. Undersurface of Recess decorated with white and gold bay leaves. Plaque inscribed above with raised plaque above with Sir Christopher's son at prayer flanked by coats of arms and obelisks.

Anne Girlington: She was born to Nicholas Girlington. Christopher Wray Chief Justice and she were married. After 07 May 1592 Anne Girlington was buried at St Michael's Church, Glentworth. Before 18 Oct 1602 John Darcy 2nd Baron Darcy Aston (age 62) and Anne Babington (age 64) were married. She by marriage Baroness Darcy of Aston.

On 07 May 1594 Bishop Edmund Scambler (age 74) died.

1603 Knighting at Theobalds House

In or before 07 May 1617 John Darcy 3rd Baron Darcy Aston (age 14) and Elizabeth West Baroness Darcy (age 36) were married. She by marriage Baroness Darcy of Aston. The difference in their ages was 21 years. They were third cousins.

On 07 May 1617 John Darcy 3rd Baron Darcy Aston (age 14) and Isabel Wray Baroness Darcy Aston were married. She by marriage Baroness Darcy of Aston.

Death of James I


On 07 May 1633 Edward Stourton 10th Baron Stourton (age 78) died. His son William Stourton 11th Baron Stourton (age 39) succeeded 11th Baron Stourton.

On 07 May 1659 Thomas Wriothesley 4th Earl of Southampton 2nd Earl Chichester (age 52) and Frances Seymour Countess Southampton (age 41) were married. She by marriage Countess of Southampton. She the daughter of William Seymour 2nd Duke Somerset (age 71) and Frances Devereux Duchess of Somerset (age 59). He the son of Henry Wriothesley 3rd Earl of Southampton and Elizabeth Vernon Countess Southampton. She a great x 4 granddaughter of King Henry VII of England and Ireland.


On 07 May 1661 Charles Boyle 3rd Baron Clifford (age 21) and Jane Seymour Baroness Clifford (age 24) were married. She the daughter of William Seymour 2nd Duke Somerset and Frances Devereux Duchess of Somerset (age 61). He the son of Richard Boyle 2nd Earl Cork 1st Earl Burlington (age 48) and Elizabeth Clifford Countess Burlington (age 47). She a great x 4 granddaughter of King Henry VII of England and Ireland.

Treaty of Nimeguen

Evelyn's Diary. 07 May 1676. I spoke to the Duke of York (age 42) about my Lord Berkeley's (age 74) going to Nimeguen. Thence, to the Queen's Council at Somerset House [Map], about Mrs. Godolphin's (age 23) lease of Spalding [Map], in Lincolnshire.


Popish Plot

Evelyn's Diary. 07 May 1685. I was in Westm Hall [Map] when Oates (age 35), who had made such a stir in the Kingdom, on his revealing a Plot of the Papists, and alarm'd several Parliaments, and had occasioned the execution of divers Priests, Noblemen*, &c. was tried for perjurie at the King's Bench [Map]; but being very tedious, I did not endeavour to see the issue, considering that it would be published. Aboundance of Roman Catholics were in the Hall in expectation of the most gratefull conviction and ruine of a person who* had ben so obnoxious to them, and, as I verily believe, had don much mischeife and greate injury to several by his violent and ill-grounded proceedings; whilst he was at first so unreasonably blowne up and encouraged, that his insolence was no longer sufferable. Mr. Roger L'Estrange (age 68) (a gentleman whom I had long known, and a person of excellent parts abating some affectations) appearing first against the Dissenters in several Tracts, had now for some yeares turn'd his style against those whom (by way of hateful distinction) they call'd Whiggs and Trimmers, under the title of Observator, which came out 3 or 4 days every weeke, in which sheets, under pretence to serve the Church of England, he gave suspicion of gratifying another party, by several passages which rather kept up animosities than appeas'd them, especialy now that nobody gave the least occasion.

Invitation to William of Orange from the Immortal Seven

On 07 May 1697 Edward Russell 1st Earl Orford (age 44) was created 1st Earl Orford 1C 1697 by King William III of England, Scotland and Ireland (age 46) in recognition of his support of the Glorious Revolution he having been one of the signatories of the Invitation to William of Orange from the Immortal Seven.

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On 07 May 1714 Thomas Horton Stanley 4th Baronet (age 43) died. His son Edward Stanley 11th Earl of Derby (age 24) succeeded 5th Baronet Stanley of Bickerstaffe.

Minutes of the Society of Antiquaries. 07 May 1718. Bought by the Society the Portrait of Edwrd the Third for a Guinea which Mr Treasurer (age 35) is ordered to pay.

Mr Bostue had the Drawing of Richard II delivered to him by Mr Director (age 40) in order for engraving, for which he is to be paid Twenty Guineas. Mr Director [?] gives the use of the Drawing to the Society.

In order to defray the expenses, it is found necessary to raise a voluntary Subscription of Seven Shillings and Six Pence aa [?] of as many [?], for which they [?] the equivalent in prints of the same when finished.

Mr Vertue (age 34) gives the Copper Plate, he is to be paid five Guineas down, five guineas when half finished, and the rest uponm delivery.

In the margin: Pictures of Henry VII and Eliza: his wife

Bought by the Society of Dr Stukeley (age 30), Secretary, an old picture of Elizabeth wife of Harry VII for £12 0s 6d which Mr Tresurer is order to pay.

Bought by the Society an old picture of Henry VII for £1 0s 4d which Mr Treasurer (age 35) is ordered to pay to Mr Norroy (age 57).

On 07 May 1733 Henry Roper 11th Baron Teynham was born to Henry Roper 10th Baron Teynham (age 25).

On 07 May 1744 Augustus Berkeley 4th Earl Berkeley (age 29) and Elizabeth Drax Countess Berkeley and Nugent (age 24) were married. She by marriage Countess Berkeley. He the son of James Berkeley 3rd Earl Berkeley and Louisa Lennox Countess Berkeley. He a great grandson of King Charles II of England Scotland and Ireland.


On 07 May 1750 Reverend Charles Belasyse 7th Viscount Fauconberg was born to Anthony Belasyse and Susannah Clarvet.

On 07 May 1751 John Waldegrave 3rd Earl Waldegrave (age 33) and Elizabeth Leveson-Gower Countess Waldegrave (age 27) were married. She the daughter of John Leveson-Gower 1st Earl Gower (age 56) and Evelyn Pierrepont Baroness Gower. He the son of James Waldegrave 1st Earl Waldegrave and Mary Webb Countess Waldegrave. He a great grandson of King James II of England Scotland and Ireland.

On 07 May 1762 William Courtenay 8th Earl Devon (age 19) and Frances Clack Countess Devon were married. He the son of William Courtenay 7th Earl Devon (age 53) and Frances Finch Countess Devon.

After 07 May 1779. St Mary's Church, Buckden [Map]. Monument to John Green, S.T.P. ie Sacrae Theologiae Doctor ie Doctor of Sacred Theology.


On 07 May 1813 Richard Lumley 9th Earl Scarborough was born to Frederick Lumley-Savile (age 25) and Charlotte Mary Beresford (age 18).


On 07 May 1925 William Lever 1st Viscount Leverhulme (age 73) died. His son William Lever 2nd Viscount Leverhulme (age 37) succeeded 2nd Viscount Leverhulme, 2nd Baron Leverhulme.

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On 07 May 1939 Jennifer Nelson 11th Baroness Arlington was born to General John Nelson (age 26) and Margaret Jane Fitzroy (age 23).

On 07 May 1959 Samuel Hoare 1st Viscount Templewood (age 79) died at his home 12a Eaton Mansions. Viscount Templewood of Chelsea in Middlesex and Baronet Hoare of Sidestrand Hall extinct.

On 07 May 1987 Dudley Ryder 6th Earl of Harrowby (age 94) died. His son Dudley Ryder 7th Earl of Harrowby (age 64) succeeded 7th Earl of Harrowby.