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Naughty, fun-loving Henry and the young dancing lady….?


We all have this picture of Henry VII being a Scrooge, and I don’t think it’s inaccurate. But it seems he had his more red-blooded moments. Yes, truly. I have happened upon the following article, which quotes from his personal accounts.

Just why did he make the following grants?

“Item to the young demoiselle that daunceth, £30”, 25 August 1493 (BL, Add. MS 7099, p.11)

“Item to a litell mayden that daunceth, £12”, 13 January 1497 (TNA, E 101/414/6, f. 59r)

Hmm. £12 is enormous enough, but £30 is astronomic! Just for dancing? My suspicious mind suspects there was a little more to it. Naughty Henry? Well, anything is possible. Anyway, the whole article makes interesting reading.

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4 thoughts on “Naughty, fun-loving Henry and the young dancing lady….?

  1. halfwit36 on said:

    The most likely explanation would be a clerical error in the amounts – but on two different occasions? I dunno.
    Maybe an example of ‘money-laundering,’ pertaining to outgo rather than income. Perhaps hush-money to insure some secret (not necessarily sexual) Henry didn’t want known stayed secret?
    Or here is a fanciful and totally fictional idea: these were payments to/for an illegitimate daughter whom he did not wish to acknowledge, and who, perhaps, did not wish to be acknowledged. If she were conceived before 1485 she would be somewhere between 7 and say 17 in the first instance, 11 and early 20s in the second (assuming they were the same person.) ‘Demoiselle’ and ‘young mayden’ generally referred to a very young girl.FWIW, which is not much


  2. halfwit36 on said:

    Or this may be the ‘smoking gun,’ Henry’s payment to the actual, physical, murderers of the Princes in the Tower, since he couldn’t do it himself. Seems like they sold their services pretty cheap, though. Any largish sum of money could point to this, so any individual payment is pretty much useless as proof of anything.

    Still another explanation is a child raised with Princess Margaret, as Charles Brandon was with Henry VIII, a ‘child of honor,’ gentry, if not nobility, much less royal. This is the simplest explanation, and the dullest, and most likely to be true for that reason.

    Anyway, a fun mental exercise!


  3. Pingback: THE PRIVY PURSE ACCOUNTS OF HENRY VII 1491 to 1505 | murreyandblue

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