Category Archives: Jane Seymour

On this day in 1536 – the wedding of Henry VIII and Jane Seymour.

On 30th May 1536 just 11 days after the death of his second wife, Anne Boleyn, King Henry VIII married Jane Seymour. The couple were married in the Queen’s Closet at York Palace. In preparation for the service the former Queen’s falcon emblems were quickly replaced with a phoenix and Jane’s initials laid over Anne’s, it was done in such hurry that if you look carefully at Hampton Court Palace you can still see some A’s under the J’s.

According to David Starkey the wedding vows would have been spoken by the King first followed by Jane and they would have been similar to the following;

“I, Henry, take thee to be my wedded wife, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, till death do us part, and thereto I plight thee my troth.”

Jane’s vows would have been the same but with the added line promising to be ‘bonny and buxom in bed and board.’

The wedding remained secret for a few days and Jane was gradually introduced as the new Queen.

Sir John Russell wrote to Lord Lisle;

“On Friday last (2nd June) the Queen sat abroad as Queen, and was served by her own servants, who were sworn that same day. The King came in his great boat to Greenwich that day with his privy chamber, and the Queen and the ladies in the great barge.”

Henry granted 104 manors in four counties along with forests and hunting chases. He also gave his new wife a Hans Holbein designed gold cup that combined the King and Queen’s initials along with Jane’s motto of ‘bound to obey and serve.’

Jane was the only wife to give Henry the one thing that he desired, a son. Although it cost her her life in doing so.

marriage deed                               The marriage deed for Jane Seymour and Henry VIII

On this day in 1536 – Henry VIII and Jane Seymour formally betrothed.

On 20th May 1536 King Henry VIII and Jane Seymour became formally betrothed. The Imperial Ambassador Eustace Chapuys wrote in a letter to the Seigneur de Granvelle;

Has just been informed, the bearer of this having already mounted, that Mrs.Semel came secretly by river this morning to the King’s lodging, and that the promise and betrothal was made at 9 o’clock. The King means it to be kept secret till Whitsuntide; but everybody begins already to murmur by suspicion, and several affirm that long before the death of the other there was some arrangement which sounds ill in the ears of the people; who will certainly be displeased at what has been told me, if it be true, viz., that yesterday the King, immediately on receiving news of the decapitation of the putain entered his barge and went to the said Semel, whom he had lodged a mile from him, in a house by the river.”

With Henry receiving the news of his former wife’s execution he headed straight to Jane Seymour’s lodging to officially propose marriage. By waiting until Anne Boleyn was dead there would be no question of the legitimacy of the marriage or any children that would be born as a result of the marriage.

The rumours of the King’s involvement with Jane Seymour had been spoken around court for some time before the betrothal took place so it probably came as no surprise to the court.

Henry VIII and Jane Seymour