ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Visiting Anne of Cleves House, Lewes, England: recalling one of the wives of King Henry VIII

Updated on February 6, 2013
Flag of England
Flag of England | Source
Anne of Cleves House, Lewes, East Sussex, England
Anne of Cleves House, Lewes, East Sussex, England | Source
Anne of Cleves after Holbein by Henry Hoppner Meyer, printed in 1828
Anne of Cleves after Holbein by Henry Hoppner Meyer, printed in 1828 | Source
Map location of Lewes district, East Sussex
Map location of Lewes district, East Sussex | Source

Remembering a sidelined Queen Consort

This ancient house in Lewes, East Sussex, England, was once owned by Anne of Cleves (1515-1557), one of King Henry VIII's six wives, and is thus known as Anne of Cleves House.

The structure is a Medieval timber framed building built around a hall, which proved especially popular in areas such as Wealden, in eastern Sussex and Kent: the term Wealden hall house is sometimes used to describe this category of building. Dating from the 15th century, some of the structure of the house continued to be modified until the 17th century. Architect Walter Godfrey (2) was active in the 20th century restoration of the House.

The House, containing authentic, period funishings, is now a museum, containing the Museum of Lewes and the Wealden Iron Gallery. It is also hired out for functions and is a venue for concerts.

It is thought that Anne of Cleves came into the possession of the House, named for her, in Lewes, Sussex, as a result of the annulment settlement to which she acquiesced in 1540. Given the fate of some of Henry VIII's other wives who were less passive in Henry's desire that they be removed from the matrimonial scene, one wonders how optional a choice was presented to Anne, who was thus Queen Consort of England for only a few months. Interestingly, records indicate that Henry remained on good terms with Anne of Cleves, even elevating her to the somewhat odd, fictitious title of the King's Beloved Sister.

Anne outlived Henry VIII, and, having converted to nascent Anglicanism in order to marry Henry in 1540, re-converted to Roman Catholicism after the accession of Queen Mary Tudor in 1553.

But please note: there is no record of Anne of Cleves herself ever having even visited this property, let alone lived there. To be brutally frank, its very name is thus really a monument to Anne's acquiescence in Henry VIII's revolving door approach to matrimony.

Anne of Cleves House is located at 52 Southover High Street, Lewes, East Sussex.

February 6, 2013

Notes

(1) Anne was the daughter of John III, Duke of Cleves (1490-c.1538) and Maria of Juelich-Berg (1491-1543). In his German territories, Duke John was known to be favourably disposed to the Renaissance scholar Erasmus of Rotterdam, and strove to promote what was similar to the via media, between Roman Catholicism and Protestantism that became an ideal for some English monarchs and Anglican prelates. There were strong political reasons why Henry VIII contemplated marriage with Anne of Cleves. Anne's mother, Maria of Juelich-Berg, leaned, however, towards a strict Roman Catholic upbringing for Anne, and it is thought that, when exposed to the highly urbane and Henry and the English court, Anne's conversation did not impress. This, in fact, may have been part of the underlying reason why Henry decided to dispense with her later in 1540; Henry's protestations that Anne was supposedly not as fair as a portrait of her painted by Holbein was not borne out by contemporary opinion.

(2) Architect Godfrey (1881-1961) was the founder of the National Buildings Record; he was responsible for restoring many other ancient buildings, including Herstmonceux Castle and Michelham Priory.

Also worth seeing

In Lewes itself, its castle has 1000 years of history; and a number of old buildings, including churches; the town has an annual bonfire festival, against the historical background to the burning at the stake of 17 Protestants during the reign of Mary I, in the 16th century.

Newhaven (distance: 12 kilometres) the Canadian Memorial — recalling the ill-fated Dieppe Raid in 1942 — in the Downtown area, and Newhaven Fort are visitor attractions at this English Channel ferry port.

...

How to get there: United Airlines flies to London Heathrow Airport, where car rental is available. (Distance from London Heathrow to Lewes : 111 kilometres.) For access by road, take M23/A23/A27. There are rail links to Lewes from London Victoria railroad station. Please check with the airline or your travel agent for up to date information.

MJFenn is an independent travel writer based in Ontario, Canada.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • MJFenn profile imageAUTHOR

      MJFenn 

      5 years ago

      sallieannluvslife:

      I agree; it's an absorbing part of England's history! Thank-you for your comment.

    • sallieannluvslife profile image

      sallieannluvslife 

      5 years ago from Eastern Shore

      Very interesting!

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)