st james london

8

18 February 1516 – The birth of a fair princess

In the early hours of 18th February 1516, at Greenwich Palace, “was borne a fayre prynces and christened with great solempnitie, and named Mary.” This little girl was the future Queen Mary I.

Mary was baptised on 20th February 1516 in the Church of the Observant Friars at Greenwich. The little princess was carried to the font by the Countess of Surrey and her godparents were Catherine Courtenay, Countess of Devon and daughter of Edward IV; Margaret Pole, Countess of Salisbury and daughter of George, Duke of Clarence; the Duchess of Norfolk, and Cardinal Thomas Wolsey.

She was the only surviving child of King Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon and the first queen to rule England in her own right. Mary was crowned on October 1553 and reigned until her death in 1558 at St. James Palace in London