Lady Jane Grey was Queen of England for just nine days and because of this, she’s often called The Nine Days’ Queen. Here are some facts about her:
- Lady Jane Grey was born in 1536 or 1537.
- Her mother, Lady Frances Brandon, was the daughter of Mary Tudor, Queen of France (Henry VIII‘s sister). This made Lady Jane Grey, Henry VIII’s grand-niece and Henry VII‘s great-granddaughter. Lady Jane Grey did have a claim to the throne, but it was quite a weak one.
- Lady Jane Grey was very well-educated. She studied Latin, Hebrew and Greek and she enjoyed reading.
- In 1547 Lady Jane Grey went to live with Catherine Parr and Thomas Seymour. She lived with them until Catherine’s death in 1548. Jane was chief mourner at Catherine Parr’s funeral.
- On 21st May 1553, Lady Jane Grey married Lord Guildford Dudley.
- On his deathbed, Edward VI (Henry VIII’s son) who was only 15, drafted his will. He changed the succession to bypass the claims of his half-sisters, Mary and Elizabeth (who had been restored to the line of succession in the Third Succession Act of 1544). Instead of Mary becoming Queen of England after his death, Edward VI named Lady Jane Grey (his first cousin once removed) as his successor.
- On 9th July 1553, three days after Edward VI’s death, Lady Jane Grey was informed that she was Queen of England. She moved to the Tower of London and was officially crowned as the monarch on the 10th July.
- While the Duke of Northumberland (Jane’s father-in-law) was away from London trying to capture Mary in East Anglia, The Privy Council, a group of royal advisers, switched their support from Lady Jane Grey to Mary.
- On 19th July 1553, Lady Jane Grey was imprisoned in the Tower of London. Mary was declared the rightful Queen and Lady Jane Grey was charged with high treason.
- The Duke of Northumberland was executed in August 1553, Lady Jane Grey and her husband were beheaded in February 1554 and her father was killed a week later.
- Lady Jane Grey was only 16 or 17 when she was executed.
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