Wyatt Rebellion


The Wyatt Rebellion of January-February 1554 CE saw Sir Thomas Wyatt the Younger lead a group of several thousand Kent rebels in a march on London with the primary aim of preventing Mary I of England (r. 1553-1558 CE) from marrying Spain's Prince Philip (l. 1527-1598 CE). There was, too, the secondary aim - never openly declared - of replacing Mary with her younger half-sister Elizabeth Tudor (b. Sep. 1533 CE). The rebels were also motivated by the fall in living standards in England caused by inflation, food shortages, the decline in trade (especially of cloth), and several waves of deadly epidemics. The rebellion failed thanks to Mary's armed response and a general lack of support from the people of London. The leaders, including Wyatt, were executed and so was Mary's cousin Lady Jane Grey (b. Oct. 1537 CE) just in case she became a figurehead for future rebellions. For the same reason, Elizabeth was detained in the Tower of London. Mary then went on to vehemently persecute her enemies whom she identified as Protestant heretics, thereby earning her lasting nickname 'Bloody Mary'.

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