I had intended writing a detailed post on our visit to The Tudors Exhibition at the Walker in Liverpool, hoping to tempt some of you to visit, but I now realise it is closing in a few days. (29th August). Unfortunately the boat has almost sailed, all I can say is you have missed a treat. Here are a few poor quality phone pictures to give you an idea.
Charting the reigns and intrigues of Henry VII, Henry VIII and his six wives, Edward VI, Mary I and Elizabeth I from 1485 to 1603. Notable portraits of them took pride of place in the first part of the exhibition. Along the way were minor parts – Cardinal Wolsey, Thomas More, Thomas Cromwell, Francis Drake, William Shakespeare, Mary Queen of Scots, all portrayed and documented.
At the time England was waging war on Ireland,Scotland, France and Spain. The Reformation and dissolution of the monasteries took place under Henry VIII and we veered from Catholicism to Protestant several times. England achieved global expansion through piracy and slavery. One of the most dramatic times in Britain’s history.
Highlight loans in the exhibition were the Westminster Tournament Roll, produced on parchment in 1511, the Roll celebrates the birth of Henry VIII’s son with Katherine Aragon, Henry, who unfortunately died in infancy. This spectacular document and accompanying video was last on public display almost 20 years ago and never seen outside London. Another incredible loan was the Bacton Altar Cloth which new research suggests is an item from Elizabeth I’s wardrobe, making it the only known surviving example of her clothing. The Bristowe Hat loaned to the exhibition, a very rare example of original Tudor fashion. The Armada Maps were on display, recently saved for the nation, these intricate drawings illustrate the dramatic conflict between the Spanish Armada and English fleet off the south coast of England in 1588. I was so impressed with these that I forgot to take a photo.
That was a three-hour journey, broken by coffee, cake and a rest.
At the end we wandered outside for a breath of fresh air and a spot of lunch before returning to sample some of the other Walker Gallery’s many highlights. In the shop I splashed out on a humorous card for the next person I know getting married.