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Dynasty: Tudors
Ruler: Edward VI
Reigned: 1547 - 1553
Denomination: AR Shilling
Date of Issue: -3rd period 1550-53
Obverse: Bust facing. "EDWARD VI DE GRA EL FRA Z hIB REX"
Reverse: Shield and cross. Mintmark - Tun. "POSVI DEVM ADIVTORE MEV"
Reference: Spink 2482, North 1937
Weight: 5.8 gms
Diameter: 32.8 mm


EDWARD VI (1537-1553), King of England and Ireland (28th January 1547 to 6th July 1553) (House of Tudor), was the last in the male line of the house of Tudor. Edward was born at Hampton Court on October 12, 1537, the only son of Henry VIII and Jane Seymour, his third wife. He succeeded to the throne on the death of his father early in 1547. On his accession, his maternal uncle, Edward Seymour, 1st Earl of Hertford, was named Lord Protector and Duke of Somerset. In 1547 the Protector, in Edward's name, invaded Scotland, using as a pretext an alleged violation by the Scots of an agreement to give Mary, Queen of Scots, in marriage to Edward. The English forces defeated the Scots at Pinkie in September of that year.

Both Edward and the Protector strongly favoured the principle of the Reformation and did much to establish Protestantism in England. The body of edicts known as the Six Articles, enacted in the reign of Henry VIII, was repealed, and a new service book, the first Book of Common Prayer, was imposed in 1549. Although it was moderate in its approach, it was strongly opposed by Roman Catholics and stirred some uprisings. It subsequently, however, came into general use in the Anglican church. In 1549 Somerset's attempt to help poor peasants by forbidding enclosure was thwarted by rich landowners, with the result that the peasants revolted. The opportunity was used by John Dudley, later Duke of Northumberland, to remove Somerset from power. Edward was thereafter virtually controlled by Dudley, who in 1552 persuaded him to have Somerset executed for treason. The king became seriously ill with tuberculosis the year after. Shortly before Edward's death at Greenwich on July 6, 1553, Dudley induced him to sign a will depriving his half sisters, who later ruled as Mary I and Elizabeth I, of their claim to the royal succession. The right of succession then fell to Lady Jane Grey, who had married Dudley's son, but she was deposed by Mary a few days later.

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