Hampton Court Palace


The story of Hampton Court Palace.

Hampton Court Palace is a famous mansion that was once the resident of many famous people, including Charles I, Elizabeth I, and Henry VIII. Besides the residents that were of-this-world, there have also been many other unworldly residents there as well. King Henry even reported seeing strange ghosts and spirits when he lived at the mansion.

The home was built by Thomas Wolsey, who would later be come to known as Cardinal Wolsey. It was during the time that King Henry VIII was in power that Wolsey built the home to serve as a summer home. Originally a mansion, the home was turned into a palace after Henry VII used it as his home and began to build on to the original building. It was built in 1514 and was completely built by1525. The home was turned over to King Henry when Wolsey stated as an act of sentiment one day that anything Wolsey owned, King Henry owned as well. Taking the statement to heart in the most extreme fashion, King Henry took ownership of the mansion.

King Henry was the one to promote Thomas to the title of Cardinal but after Wolsey could not get King Henry a legal divorce from Catherine of Aragon, his first wife, he was charged with treason and had all of his possessions taken away from him. King Henry would have most likely taken Wolsey to court and had him tried and executed but Wolsey died in 1530.

While in the home, King Henry often reported that he could see Herne the Hunter on several different occasions. Although he could have been speaking the truth, many historians believe that the King was only trying to convince himself and those that he ruled that Herne the Hunter was actually sent as a protector to the king and that the local legend actually condoned the King’s cruel actions. Besides Herne the Hunter, King Henry also reported seeing other ghosts as well. He saw a few of the priests that he had killed while he was trying to change the way of the local churches in a brutal fashion. He also would say that he saw the ghost of Anne Bolelyn, his second wife who he had beheaded. When Bolelyn’s ghost would be seen by Henry, she would still appear beheaded.

Anne Bolelyn is one of the ghosts that is most often seen within the mansion and she has been seen by more people than just King Henry. Sometimes she appears with her head, and other times without. Still other times, she is carrying her head around with her. Those who have seen her have said that she appears to be angry, horrified by her unjust death, and it has also been said that she wanders around the mansion very slowly. Those that have been in her presence have also commented that they have felt rage, sadness, dread, and a fear of dying with no one knowing who she ever was.

Another ghost that is often likely to appear is the ghost of Jane Seymour. Lady Seymour was the third wife of Henry VIII and her story is a heart-breaking one. She is the only wife that could provide King Henry with a son. They were married less than a day after the beheading of Queen Anne but Lady Seymour was never held a formal coronation. It was in 1537 that she became pregnant that she and King Henry would ever have as she died in childbirth. Her ghost can most likely be seen in the Clock Court or the Silver Stick Gallery. When seen, she is wearing a white robe and carrying a candle. Because she appears to be looking for something, people have often speculated that perhaps she is looking for her son that she never met. Although King Henry had six wives, Lady Seymour is the only one to be buried in the King’s burial vault with him.

Catherine Howard, King Henry’s fifth wife, is also seen around the palace. When she was married to King Henry, she had many affairs with men that were quite younger than her and unfortunately, King Henry found out about these affairs and ordered her death by beheading. When she is seen, she is running through the gallery and the halls pleading for the King not to take her life. Technically, this is called a psychic impression rather than an actual ghost sighting.

Sybil Penn, often referred to as the Grey Lady, has also been seen, heard and felt in the palace. She was the nurse who took care of King Henry’s children and she died of small pox in 1632. She has sometimes been seen in the halls or taking care of children who stay within the palace. She is known as a friendly ghost and nothing at all to be feared. When her haunting was first heard, it was in the form of a spinning wheel. Owners were confused as to where the sound was coming from and they finally located the noise in a room that had been completely sealed off. The only thing in the room was her spinning wheel and no one knows why that’s the only object there or why the room was sealed off in the first place.

Two soldiers also used to haunt the courtyard of the palace. They are thought to have died there during the time of the English Civil War, when there were many troops within the courtyard and several of them died in the battle that ensued. The skeletons of these two soldiers were found when renovations and repairs were being made at the palace and it was at that time that they were given a formal burial. It’s thought that they have since that time, found their peace, since they no longer continue to haunt the courtyard at the palace.

Hampton Court Palace is still thought to be haunted today. The palace is now used as a museum and groups and individuals are invited to go see the famous palace for themselves.

Hampton Court Palace

Hampton Court Palace

Hampton Court Palace

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