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King Henry VIII of England -- St. George's Chapel, Lower Ward, Winsdor Castle, Windsor, Berkshire, UK
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Benchmark Blasterz
N 51° 29.010 W 000° 36.401
30U E 666175 N 5706310
Quick Description: The statue of King Henry VIII in a niche on the south side of St George's Chapel in the Lower Ward of Windsor Castle
Location: South East England, United Kingdom
Date Posted: 10/30/2016 11:28:54 AM
Waymark Code: WMTBZ0
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member lumbricus
Views: 1

Long Description:
The statue of King Henry VIII at the south side of St George's Chapel is recognizeable not only by his Tudor-era attire but also by his pot belly, a references to his known girth.

The statue looks to be larger than life size, maybe 1.5-2x times life size since it is so far off the ground, it is hard to tell how large the statues are. King Henry VIII is wearing a hat with an upturned brim and jewels. He sports Tudor-style bloused pants and stockings with a knee buckle. His tunic top fails to hide his protruding belly. He holds a Royal Sceptre in his left hand, a symbol of monarchy. His right hand is at his hip. His face is recognizeable by its beard. He looks like the most famous portraits of Henry VIII known to the world.

Henry VIII lived at Windsor Castle, and is buried at St George's Chapel. This explains why his statue is inset into a niche on the Chapel.

From the On the Tudor Trail blog: (visit link)

"Henry VIII’s Final Resting Place
SEPTEMBER 17, 2012 BY NATALIE

A marble slab marks Henry VIII and Jane Seymour’s final resting place in the Quire of St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle; however, this was only intended to be temporary while a grand monument was completed.

In his will, Henry VIII describes the monument as being ‘almost made’ but what is perhaps not so well known is that the original tomb was not Henry’s at all, rather Cardinal Wolsey’s.
In 1524, Thomas Wolsey commissioned the great Italian Renaissance sculptor, Benedetto da Rovezanno, to construct a magnificent tomb for him. By the time of Wolsey’s fall from favour, the marble base, pillars and statues were appropriated by Henry VIII and redesigned for his own use.

A description of Henry VIII’s tomb, designed by Jacopo Sansovino, appear in John Speed’s The history of great Britaine (London, 1627). It is believed that while compiling his work, Speed had access to a manuscript owned by Nicholas Charles (Lancaster Herald from 1608-1613) showing or describing plans for the construction of the tomb. The original manuscript is lost but the magnificence of Henry’s planned tomb can be gleaned from Speed’s work and from conjectured drawings made by Alfred Higgins in 1894, one of which can be seen here.

Clare Rider, Archivist and Chapter Librarian, refers to Speed’s work in her description of Henry’s grand tomb,

“No expense was to be spared in crafting the vast edifice, ornamented with ‘fine Oriental stones’ and resplendent with white marble pillars, gilded bronze angels, four life-size images of the King and Queen Jane, and a statue of the King on horseback under a triumphal arch, ‘of the whole stature of a goodly man and a large horse’. In all, there were to be one hundred and thirty four figures, including St George, St John the Baptist, the Prophets, the Apostles and the Evangelists, ‘all of brass gilt as in the pattern appeareth’.”

An effigy of the king was cast and polished in Henry’s lifetime but the monument was not complete by the time of his death in 1547. Even though some work continued during the reign of his children, the monument remained unfinished and in 1646 the Commonwealth parliament sold the effigy of Henry VIII to raise funds.

Four bronze candlesticks from the tomb ended up in St Bavon’s Cathedral in Ghent, Belgium, replicas of which can be seen in St George’s Chapel, next to the High Altar. In 1808, the tomb’s base and black touchstone sarcophagus were moved to the crypt of St Paul’s Cathedral, London, to form part of Lord Nelson’s funerary monument, where it can still be seen today.

In 1649, the vault was opened and the body of the executed Charles I was added to it. In the seventeenth century a stillborn child of the future Queen Anne was laid to rest with Charles, Henry and Jane.

Here they remained undisturbed, and in relative obscurity, until the tomb was rediscovered in 1813 during excavations for a new royal vault. Several relics of Charles I were removed, including a piece of vertebrae, a section of beard and a tooth.

George IV requested that a marble slab be inserted to permanently mark the burial site and this was eventually added in 1837 at the behest of William IV.

In 1888, the tomb was opened once more to replace the relics removed in 1813. At this time, A.Y. Nutt, Surveyor to the Dean and Canons, made a watercolour drawing of the vault that can be seen here.

He noted that Henry VIII’s coffin lay in between Charles I and Jane Seymour. The tiny coffin of the infant child of Queen Anne lay on top of the coffin of Charles I. Henry VIII’s coffin was recorded as being two metres in length and badly damaged, with some remains of the king partially visible.

It is ironic that a king, who embodied magnificence and lived so opulently, should lie in a plain vault, marked only by a marble slab."
Monarch Ranking: King / Queen

Proper Title and Name of Monarch: King Henry VIII of England

Country or Empire of Influence: England

Website for additonal information: [Web Link]

Visit Instructions:

Waymark Visitor - Must either

  • Provide a photo at the Statue
  • Answer a related question, if available, as posted on the Waymark description to the satistfaction of the Owner
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    Recent Visits/Logs:
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    Master Mariner visited King Henry VIII of England -- St. George's Chapel, Lower Ward, Winsdor Castle, Windsor, Berkshire, UK 1/17/2017 Master Mariner visited it
    Benchmark Blasterz visited King Henry VIII of England -- St. George's Chapel, Lower Ward, Winsdor Castle, Windsor, Berkshire, UK 7/26/2016 Benchmark Blasterz visited it

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