Archives for: February 2008, 29


Permalink 04:11:30 pm, by Email , 159 words   English (CA)
Categories: Kings And Queens, British History

Catherine of Valois - Kissing A Dead Body

Catherine of Valois

Henry V's queen Catherine of Valois died in 1437. Her grandson King Henry VII made major alterations to Westminster Abbey, which involved moving her embalmed body.

She was placed in a crude coffin constructed of flimsy boards, and was left above ground. Ew.

Marriage of Henry V and Catherine of Valois

Catherine remained a public spectacle in the Abbey for over 200 years!!!

Vergers used to charge a shilling to take off the coffin's lid so curious visitors could view her corpse for themselves. However, seeing was not enough for some of the guests to Westminster, one Samuel Pepys, who went to the Abbey on his 36th birthday did more than just look.

Portrait of Samuel Pepys by J. Hayls. Oil on canvas, 1666.

"I had the upper part of her body in my hands, and I did kiss her mouth, reflecting upon that I did first kiss a Queene."

Catherine's body was finally removed from public display in 1776.......


Pastime with Good Company

Pastyme With Good Companye

Welcome to the blog of amateur historians Matthew James Didier and Sue Darroch. Partners in life and in crime, we endeavor to entertain you with snippets from our combined historical research. Past time with good company indeed, as we shall introduce you to Kings and Knaves, Queens and Mistresses, Cons and Heroes, from our collective past......from events well known to those perhaps all but forgotten, we will do our best to bring you interesting historical factoids from around the globe. It is our belief that through understanding our past we will all gain a better perspective on our future.

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