The Tide Letter - Document Two

Helper notes and answers

  • Colour of the page looks very old, with fold marks and some of the edges a bit damaged
  • Handwriting is neat!  But the language is hard to read and understand
  • PRO stampon the second page
  • Lines drawn through the second page of the document

[Read me after you’ve looked closely at the extracts:]

This is a very famous document written in 1554 by the then Princess Elizabeth.  Elizabeth had been imprisoned by her half-sister Queen Mary I, because Mary suspected Elizabeth of taking part in the Wyatt rebellion.  Elizabeth wrote this letter when she heard she was going to be taken to the Tower of London – it was a last attempt to get the attention of Mary.  Elizabeth added the strike through lines so that no one could make changes to it.  When she was writing it, Elizabeth deliberately took her time waiting for the tide to change and get higher.  This meant that no boats were able to pass under the arches of London Bridge, thus saving her from the Tower for an extra day.   The document is called the Tide letter.

« Return to Dear Herbert

Spend 30-60 seconds looking at this document as a whole, what can you spot?