Pretty Hever Castle in Kent has a storied past. The childhood home of Anne Boleyn, it was here that King Henry VIII courted her and it was here her family lived when she met her unfortunate and untimely demise.
The castle was given to Anne of Cleves, King Henry’s fourth wife, after she fell out of favour and he divorced her (lucky girl), and after her death the castle met with a succession of owners who cared for it, or not.
William Waldorf Astor purchased the castle in 1903, restored it and lived there for a number of years. Heavy flooding caused serious damage in 1968 and eventually the castle was sold and restored as a heritage site. It’s been open to the public since 1983.
I’ve visited Hever a couple of times, most recently last September. To me it is a romantic place. Tudor history has always fascinated me, and to walk where colourful historical characters of the time have walked does, in some way, bring their stories more to life in my mind. As well, whenever I visit medieval castles I’m always surprised at how small the doorways and narrow the spiral staircases in the towers. At just under 5ft 8″ myself I feel like a giant in such close confines and am prone to claustrophobia. I have to chew gum, or something, to distract myself from having a panic attack. 😉
Currently I’m reading Queen of the Realm ~ a fictionalized account of Elizabeth I by historical novelist, Jean Plaidy. Her mother was Anne Boleyn, of course, so Hever Castle has been somewhat in my thoughts of late.
This silly little rhyme formed itself as we were visiting this beautiful castle. Funny where the mind goes.
Not so happy, was the bride
A daughter of the Boleyn tribe.
As Henry’s lust to Jane was lead
Poor Anne was doomed to lose her head.
Thanks for visiting,
©Dorothy Chiotti, Aimwell CreativeWorks 2014
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