Highly recommend this article, one of the most emotive letters I’ve read from the Tudors and there are plenty of those that give you the feels. Good post.
Elizabeth I and Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester, had a long, deep, and complicated relationship. They were childhood friends, and he was one of her favorites (if not her very favorite) when she came to the throne in November 1558. Truly he was the love of her life, though she never married him. They remained close until he died.
It was just after the defeat of the Spanish Armada in 1588. Leicester’s stomach had been bothering him for some time (it is believed he was suffering from stomach cancer) and he decided to travel to Buxton to take the healing waters there. He wrote this letter shortly before his planned departure, which never occurred (he died at his house in Oxfordshire on September 4, 1588). The letter was found after Elizabeth’s death in 1603, in a small casket by her bed. She had written “His Last Letter” on it…
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