Saturday, 28 May 2011

A poem from Lady Jane Grey

When 15 year old King Edward VI was dying he nominated his cousin Lady Jane Grey to succeed him on the throne of England, therefore invalidating the claims of his half-sisters Mary and Elizabeth. Lady Jane reluctantly took the throne, only to be ousted by Mary and her followers after nine days of rule, she was convicted of high treason and executed.

Lady Jane Grey Dudley (Helena Bonham Carter) and Guilford Dudley
as portrayed in the 1986 film 'Lady Jane'

Lady Jane, who is commonly referred to as the 'Nine Days' Queen' is one of those historical figures I really admire, she was such a steadfast and inspirational person. She was only 16 or 17 at the time of her execution however she never gave into the pressure to change what she believed in.

This beautiful yet tragic poem below was written by Lady Jane, four days before she was executed:

Observing eyes watch over me,

They witness my 'woeful days',

But change; they will not see.

I will be strong unto the end,

My spirit is low, but my will is high.

The Quene has condemned me,

Mine, simple body,

Sentenced to die.

They persist on their faith,

To beguile me,

Endeavouring to dissuade me from mine.

Thou puppet never again will I be,

Am wilful,

I decline.


Elizabeth said...

Lady Jane Grey is some one I also admire. I read a very good historical fiction book about her. It was called "Innocent Traitor". It is one of my favorite books!

It is a lovely poem!

Tristans_Isolde said...

I have heard of that book before but always seem to overlook it, I think now I will definitely have to try and get a hold of it! :) Thanks

Aimee said...

I'm dressing up as Lady Jane Grey for history day at school. We were told to dress up as someone we admire and I really admire Lady Jane Grey because even though everyone was against her her faith never wavered and she stuck to what she believed to be right.

Mel said...

Aimee: That is so wonderful! It's so nice to see that I am not the only person who admires her for standing true to what she believed :)
I hope that history day goes well at your school, and I am sure you will look lovely as Lady Jane Grey!