Hampton Court Palace: Jane Seymour’s final home
Dr Nicola Tallis explores Jane Seymour’s tragic connections to Hampton Court Palace…
The heritage space connected to Jane Seymour that I'd recommend people to visit is Hampton Court Palace. In my mind, there is no place more evocative of Jane's reign than Hampton Court Palace, Henry VIII’s beautiful, red-brick, Thameside residence. And it was here that the perhaps best-remembered event of Jane's reign took place; in the autumn of 1537, Jane arrived with her ladies and went into confinement to await the arrival of her child. The room that Jane gave birth in, and in which she died, still survives.
But perhaps more evocative still is the Chapel Royal. And it was here that Jane's son, the future Edward VI, was christened on 15 October 1537 – a magnificent occasion on which the very creme of the English nobility were out in force.
Although Jane didn't attend the christening personally, there is still a poignant reminder of her presence outside the chapel today: her initials are interlinked with those of Henry VIII at the entrance to the chapel. This serves as a very tangible reminder, I think, of Jane's presence at Hampton Court and also the events that took place within.
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Dr Nicola Tallis is an author and historian with expertise in Tudor England. Her latest book is All the Queen’s Jewels, 1445–1548: Power, Majesty and Display (Routledge, 2022)
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