The Six Wives of Henry VIII
Catherine of Aragon Anne Boleyn Jane Seymour Anne of Cleves Catherine Howard Catherine Parr
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Tudor Times
Power Pageantry God & King Sports Fashion School Days Food & Feasts London, C. 1558

London C. 1572
Solve the Riddle!
London, c. 1558
Fraz Hogenberg, c. 1572
Credit: Guildhall Library, Corporation of London

In Tudor times, London was a large, bustling city -- the center of politics, entertainment, trade and commerce. The city bore witness to both the pageantry of Tudor coronations and the beheadings of queens and accused heretics alike. The area of Westminster housed the king and parliament, while across the Thames was Southwark, the entertainment and red light district. Merchants, with their ships lining the banks of the Thames, made their riches importing or exporting goods to or from Europe. Thousands of people also made London -- a city with no structured sewage system -- their home. While aristocrats and the rich could escape the city during summer plague epidemics, the poor remained amidst the filth and smell. London suffered through six significant outbreaks of the plague in Tudor times. In 1563, 20,000 people died of the plague while in 1603 34,000 perished. To prevent the spread of the disease and to clean up the city, several laws were passed including one that forbid the emptying of chamber pots into the street -- a law that was largely ignored.
What was London's population (including Southwark) by the end of Henry's reign?
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