Jane – The Nine Day’s Queen

Heard of Lady Jane Grey, the uncrowned queen of England for just nine days (From 10 July until 19th July 1553).

Jane was an excellent humanist and had a reputation as one of the most learned young women of the day. She was the granddaughter of Henry VII through his younger daughter Mary and the niece of King Henry VIII.

Son of King Henry VIII, Edward VI died young, and in June 1553, Edward VI wrote his will, nominating his cousin, Jane, and her male heirs as successors to the Crown. This was because his half-sister Mary was Roman Catholic, while Jane was a committed Protestant and would support the reformed Church of England, whose foundation Edward claimed to have laid.

The will had denied the rights to his half-sisters, Mary and Elizabeth, from the line of succession, subverting their claims under the Third Succession Act.
After Edward’s death, on 10 July 1553, Jane was proclaimed queen and preparing for the coronation, staying in the Tower of Londo
However, the supporters of Edward’s half-sisters claimed that they are the legitimate daughters of King Henry VIII, and the support for Mary, the oldest daughter, to ascend to the throne, grew.

As a result, most of Jane’s supporters abandoned her. The Privy Council of England suddenly changed sides and proclaimed Mary as queen on 19 July 1553, deposing Jane.

But that was a huge blunder as what happened later had proved it.

Mary was a devote catholic. She was obviously bitter that her father, founded the new Church of England to divorce her mother and marry again. Had that not happened, she would have been the only child and automatic heir to the throne.

When she became the queen, she could have thought that it was her faith in catholicism that made her ascend to the throne against all odds and so she became even more devoted and very bitter too on protestants.

As a result, within a month of becoming a queen, Jane’s prime supporter, her father-of-law was executed for high treason.
Jane too was held prisoner in the Tower and was convicted of high treason. Both Jane and her husband were executed on 12 February 1554.
But Mary didn’t stop with that. She went on the killing spree and at least 300 protestants were burned alive. This earned her the nickname, ‘Bloody Mary’.

However, she died within 6 years.

But poor Jane, the ‘nine-day queen’ was a victim of 16th-century politics in England.