King Edward VI: Facts and Information

Here are some facts about Edward VI, King of England and Ireland.

  • Although Jane Seymour appeared to recover quickly from the birth of Edward VI, she died on 24th October 1537.
  • Edward has traditionally been described as a sickly youth, but this view has been challenged by modern historians. There is evidence to suggest that Edward VI was tall and healthy as a child.

Edward VI

  • From the age of six, Edward VI was educated in a range of subjects, including: philosophy, geometry, music, scripture, French, Spanish and Italian. He is believed to have been very intelligent.
  • Edward VI got on well with his sisters Elizabeth and Mary, and he had had a good relationship with Henry VIII’s sixth wife, Catherine Parr.
  • Following the death of Henry VIII, Edward VI was crowned on 20th February 1547 at Westminster Abbey.
  • Henry VIII’s will did not name a Protector. Instead he wanted England to be governed by a Regency Council until Edward VI was old enough to rule in his own right. This didn’t happen, and Edward Seymour, Edward VI’s uncle, was made Lord Protector of the Realm and Duke of Somerset, and ruled England on behalf of his nephew.
  • Edward Seymour was eventually removed from power by the Privy Council led by John Dudley. He was executed in 1552.
  • John Dudley, Duke of Northumberland, took over the role of ruling the country, even though he never called himself Protector.
  • Edward VI became ill in early 1553. He died on 6th July 1553, aged 15. He was buried in Westminster Abbey. It is thought that he was suffering from tuberculosis.
  • Before his death, Edward had drawn up legal documents to disinherit his half-sisters (Mary and Elizabeth) from the succession. He named Lady Jane Grey (his first cousin once removed) as his successor.

What next? Discover more Tudor facts, learn about famous Tudors, or find out about Edward VI’s father, Henry VIII.

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