Tudor Crown

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For the heraldic symbol, see Tudor Crown (heraldry).
Charles I, with the Tudor crown pictured on a table to his right

The Tudor Crown was a crown used by the Renaissance monarchs of England and later Great Britain. The crown was possibly commissioned by Henry VII. It was frequently worn by Henry VIII, and is therefore sometimes known as Henry VIII's crown. The crown was also worn by Henry's children, Edward VI, Mary I and Elizabeth I. After the death of Elizabeth I and the demise of the Tudor dynasty the Stuarts came to power in England. Both James I and Charles I are known to have worn the crown. After Charles I's execution in 1649 Oliver Cromwell had the crown melted down and the precious stones were sold.

The crown is first documented in writing in a 1521 inventory of Henry VIII's jewels, naming the crown the "kingis crowne of golde". A later inventory conducted in 1547 noted that the crown bore 344 gems, including "nyne perles not all of one sorte and three Saphires". The inventories reveal that the crown originally had a figure of Holy Mary at the back, with three figures of kings around the other sides later replaced by three figures of Christ, in an effort by Henry VIII to secure his position as head of the new English church.

A replica of the crown was created in 2012, commissioned by Historic Royal Palaces and fashioned by the retired royal jeweller Harry Collins, using authentic Tudor metalworking techniques and real gemstones. It can be viewed as part of an exhibition in Hampton Court Palace.[1]

From 1902 to 1953 a stylised heraldic "Tudor Crown" was widely used by the British government and its agencies in numerous official contexts to represent governmental authority.

See also[edit]