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QUEEN ANNE NEVILL – HER BURIAL IN WESTMINSTER ABBEY

Anne_Neville_portrait.jpg

Queen Anne Neville from the Salisbury Roll.  Anne’s mantle equates her ancestorial arms with those of England and France.

After Anne Neville’s death on the 16th March 1485 , she was given a magnificent funeral in Westminster Abbey ‘with honours no less than befitted the burial of a queen’ (1).

Those  wishing to visit the Abbey to pay their respects at her grave will be unable to find it, although the general location is known.  The Westminster sacrist’s accounts record the payment of ₤42.12 for her burial but there are no accounts of the funeral or any monument.  The Great Chronicle of London, written in the 1530s records that Anne was buried south of the high alter ‘by the South dore that does ledyth Into Seynt Edwardys Chapell’.  A late 16th century list of Westminster burials also records her burial on the south side of the Sanctuary.  According to Stow,  Anne was buried  south of the Westminster Vestry while Crull claimed her grave stood in the south choir aisle (2).

The lack of a gravestone or monument might be explained by Richard’s own death five months later or may be due to the confined space between the high altar and the sedilia (priests seats) (3)

A leaden coffin was discovered in 1866 south of the high altar but was not disturbed (4). However it is  unclear whether this was Anne’s coffin or that of another queen Anne, Anne of Cleves.

in 1960 an enamelled shield of arms  with a brass plate was placed on the wall of the south ambulatory as near to the grave site as possible, by the Richard lll Society.    The brass plate is  inscribed with the words ANNE NEVILL 1456-1485 QUEEN OF ENGLAND YOUNGER DAUGHTER OF RICHARD EARL OF WARWICK CALLED THE KINGMAKER WIFE TO THE LAST PLANTAGENET KING RICHARD lll   ‘In person she was seemly, amiable and beauteous and according to the interpretation of her name Anne full gracious’ REQUIESCAT IN PACE.  

The quotation is taken from the Rous Roll.

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Brass plate and enamelled shield of arms given by the Richard lll Society

 

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Anne from the Rous Roll.

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Anne’s Coat of Arms..

Maybe it will be a comfort to those that travel to Westminster Abbey  only to find they cannot find Anne’s  grave to contemplate  that the inibility to trace it  may  have saved Anne’s mortal remains from  the desecration and  resulting loss that befell the remains of her sister, Isobel Duchess of Clarence and her sister-in-law, Elizabeth Wydeville .

1. Crowland Chronicle p.175

2. Royal Tombs of Medieval England.  Mark Duffy.p.264

3.  Royal Tombs of Medieval England. Mark Duffy p.265

4. Memorials of the Wars of the Roses.  W E Hampton p.117

 

 

 

 

 

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8 thoughts on “QUEEN ANNE NEVILL – HER BURIAL IN WESTMINSTER ABBEY

  1. viscountessw on said:

    An informative article, sparkypus. Just think. As Richard once was, so Anne too is lying there, waiting to be discovered. It would be fitting if she were found, although I know she would not be disturbed. Certainly she would not be lain beside him.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. sparkypus on said:

    Thank you Vicountess. I wonder if Richard had the intention of a final burial place for Anne, Edward and himself where they would all, finally rest together.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Jasmine on said:

      A complication would have been his proposed second marriage and perhaps the births of subsequent children. That scenario is likely to have altered any burial plans he may have had.

      Liked by 1 person

      • sparkypus on said:

        Yes possibl Jasmine. Although there are examples of nobility being buried alongside their previous spouses and not their last one..John of Gaunt and Henry Vlll spring to mind and of course there are examples of triple monuments with 2 spouses either side. Hopefully this stopped any rows in the afterlife😇

        Liked by 3 people

      • viscountessw on said:

        Just imagine Henry VIII being interred with all his queens – that would be one heck of a tomb!

        Liked by 1 person

    • halfwit36 on said:

      Reminds me of the widower who asked to be buried between his two late wives. Both, he said, were wonderful women, and he had loved both of them, but “tilt me a little toward Mary Ann.”

      Liked by 1 person

  3. McArthur, Richard P. on said:

    The year of death was 1485.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. sparkypus on said:

    Thank you Richard for pointing that out. I did know …how silly of me.

    Liked by 1 person

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