Monday, 23 June 2014

A lion of a gift

King Henry VII and his wife Queen Elizabeth shared a loving and affectionate marriage, during which he allowed her many freedoms and gave her numerous gifts.

In January 1592 Henry VII gave to his wife a gift of a lion, possibly as a New Years gift. The lion cost the king £2 13s 4d, which in today's money is around £1300. 
The date can be assured as the king paid on January 16th 1592; 53s 4d to "one that brought the king a lion in reward". (20 shillings in 1 pound)
It can be guessed that the lion was taken to live in the royal menagerie in the Tower of London.

Barary Lion - Illustration by Joseph Bassett Holder

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