Teachers' Notes 
3. Worksheet for using the Videorich text file logo- THE DYSASTERS AND MISFORTUNES OF JOHN AND JANE DANIELL

Instructions - From the Tudor Hackney homepage, click on “The Story of the Daniells”, then, under “Video”, click on how you will be watching the video. If your internet connection is fast enough you can view the video at full screen. Right-click on the video window, a menu will appear, choose Full Screen. To go back to the window, use the escape (Esc) key.

John Daniell was a well-off landowner from Runcorn, Cheshire. He was born in 1545. Jane was also from a well-off family, but was a religious refugee. She was Jane van Kethulle, from a Protestant Flemish family, fleeing from Catholic persecution. She found a job in England as lady attendant to the Countess of Essex. One way of making lots of money in Tudor times was to go to the Royal Court. The Queen had jobs to hand out and you hoped she would give one to you. They were well-paid and you could make lots of money on the side. To get on at court, to get close to the Queen, you joined the service of one of the Queen’s favourites. You hoped he would put your name forward when the jobs were handed out. John Daniell joined the service of the Robert Devereux, Earl of Essex. In the Essex household John met Jane and they were married in about 1595. They called their second son Devereux. But service at court was a very risky business. Being at court was expensive and it could all go terribly wrong if the Queen turned against you. Death, temptation and prison lurked around the corner…….as you will see!

Now watch the videos.

Summary of the story
Chapter 1.
We see Jane writing her version of the story in 1606 and go back to 1602 when she was a devoted and trusted servant of the Countess of Essex. The Countess gives her a casket to look after.

Chapter 2.
We learn that John Daniell has money problems. When the casket is returned to the Countess, some letters are missing.

Chapter 3.
John persuades the Countess of Essex to pay him money. She promises to help the Daniells.

Chapter 4.
The Daniells receive £1,720, but the Countess is angry with Jane.

Chapter 5.
The Daniells spend the money on fine clothes and on redecorating and furnishing their house in Hackney, the Rectory House. But the Earl of Essex is tried and executed for treason. John is arrested on the word of the Countess. He is convicted of blackmail, put in the pillory, then in prison and fined a total of £3,000.

Chapter 6.
The only way the Daniells can pay this huge fine is by selling up their lovely house and all its contents.

Activity 1: Who is guilty?
Jane Daniell seems unsure whether their downfall was due to John doing something wrong, or the Countess of Essex getting at them. What do you think?
1. If you think John Daniell committed a crime, what did he do? Look at Chapter 2 again and then improvise another scene in which you show what he did.
OR 2. If it was the Countess of Essex’s fault, what did she do? Improvise a scene showing what she did.

Activity 2: Hot-seat Jane Daniell
What kind of person was Jane Daniell?
1. Was she: loyal, silly, clever, sad, dutiful, greedy, truthful, kind, vain, stupid? Which of these words best describe her? Choose some words of your own if you can think of better ones.
2. Prepare to “hot-seat” one member of the class (or your teacher) as Jane Daniell. Prepare some questions you would like to ask her.
3. Remember that the story you have just seen is based on her own account of events. How reliable do you think the story on the video is?
How does this affect the judgement of Jane you have just made?

Activity 3: Hot-seat John Daniell
Prepare to “hot-seat” a member of your class (or your teacher) as John Daniell. Get your questions ready: see if he admits to the crimes which got him into so much trouble.

Activity 4: Spending your money in Tudor England
Look again at Chapter 5. How did the Daniells spend their money when they had it? Draw some of the things they bought. Are these the same kinds of things people spend money on now?

Background: How do we know?
Jane and John wrote their accounts of what happened – you see Jane writing hers in the video. The play was based on her account. When the Rectory House and all its contents were sold up to pay their fine, an inventory was made. This is a list of everything in the house, room by room, with its value. This inventory exists and you can view it if you go to the homepage, look at the text on the right hand side, the second paragraph and click on the word “inventory”. A drop-down menu will take you to each room. You will see the actual inventory document for that room, in old handwriting, and a version in modern writing. It uses old English money, so you need to know that there were 12 pennies in a shilling and 20 shillings in a pound. These were written: pennies (d), shillings (s) and pounds (l). Roman numbers were used. On the site there is also a drop-down menu of drawings of items from the inventory so that you can see for yourself what everything looked like.
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This site, developed with funding from the New Opportunities Fund as one of the projects within Sense of Place, London, forms part of the National Archive's Education site. It was developed as a partnership between Hackney Archives Department, Immediate Theatre and the National Archive's Education Team