Royal Connections – Tudor Tuesdays

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Anne Boleyn PortraitRoyal Connections is the theme for #TudorTuesdays with Historic Houses.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Hever’s most famous royal connection is to Queen Anne Boleyn, who was the 2nd wife of King Henry VIII of England from 1533 to 1536 and mother to Queen Elizabeth I.  

However, there are a few lesser known Tudor connections to Royalty as well.

After Anne Boleyn’s execution for treason in 1536, alongside her only brother George, her parents, Thomas and Elizabeth, withdrew from court life until their own deaths in 1539 and 1538 respectively. Due to the lack of a male heir, Hever Castle was then passed to a male cousin, who did not have interests in the Kent area and so exchanged the property for one held by the Crown (as all unclaimed properties were at the time).  

As a result, Hever moved into Royal hands and was therefore at Henry VIII’s disposal in 1540 when his marriage to his 4th wife, Queen Anne of Cleves, was annulled. As a German Princess and therefore a blood royal herself, Anne of Cleves was afforded a comfortable post-divorce lifestyle, which included the gifting and leasing of several Crown properties, one of which was Hever. Although not as popular or as enigmatic as Anne Boleyn, Anne of Cleves nonetheless held onto Hever for 17 years and even wrote letters signed from her ‘house at Hever.’ 

Anne of Cleves

More recently still, we have been fortunate enough to enjoy visits from modern day Royals, including Queen Elizabeth II herself, her cousin the Duke of Kent and her youngest son, Prince Edward, all of which help to continue and enforce Hever’s 500 year old royal legacy. 

If you enjoyed this item on royal connections why not discover the previous #TudorTuesdays news items:

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