Edmund Tudor, Duke of Somerset

Edmund Tudor, Duke of Somerset (21 February 1499 – 19 June 1500) was an English prince, and the sixth child of King Henry VII of England and his wife, Elizabeth of York.

Edmund Tudor
Duke of Somerset
Edmund Tudor.jpg
Detail of a painting showing the family of Henry VII, c. 1509.
Born21 February 1499
Greenwich Palace, Kent, England
Died19 June 1500(1500-06-19) (aged 1)
Hatfield House, Hertfordshire, England
FatherHenry VII of England
MotherElizabeth of York

He was styled from birth Duke of Somerset, but never formally created a peer.[1]

Early lifeEdit

Edmund Tudor was born on 21 February 1499, at Greenwich Palace, Kent. He was baptised in the Church of the Observant Friars on 24 February 1499.[2] The festivities for the christening were considered very splendid.[3] The child was named Edmund after his paternal grandfather, Edmund Tudor, 1st Earl of Richmond, father of King Henry VII.[4]

His godparents were his paternal grandmother Lady Margaret Beaufort, Edward Stafford, 3rd Duke of Buckingham and Richard Foxe.[5] Lady Margaret Beaufort gave the child a gift of £100 and rewarded the midwife and nurses.[6]

Edmund spent some time in the royal nursery of Eltham Palace with his elder sisters Margaret and Mary and his brother the Duke of York (afterwards King Henry VIII). The eldest sibling, Arthur, did not reside in the nursery with his siblings, as he had his own household.[6]

Edmund was present with his elder siblings Margaret, Mary and Henry when Erasmus and Thomas More visited the royal nursery at Eltham Palace in September 1499. The seven-month-old Edmund was held in the arms of his nurse during the visit.[7]

Duke of SomersetEdit

Edmund is said to have been created Duke of Somerset, but no enrolment of a patent of such creation is to be found.[7] It seems likely that, although he may have been styled Duke of Somerset, he died before he was so created.[1] His elder brother Henry, afterwards King Henry VIII of England, was not created Duke of York until he was above 3 years of age.[8]


Edmund died on 19 June 1500, at the Old Palace, Hatfield, Herts, aged 15 months.[2] The cause of Edmund's death is unknown, and he could have died of a number of childhood diseases; at the time of his death, however, it is known that the plague was rampant.[5]

King Henry and Queen Elizabeth had travelled to Calais and stayed for 40 days. The royal children were removed from Eltham Palace to the more remote Hatfield House in Hertfordshire for isolation. On 16 June, as the plague abated, Henry and Elizabeth sailed to Dover. It was either during their return or upon their arrival that they received the news of Edmund's death at Hatfield.[6]


Edmund was given a state funeral, and records indicate that the king gave over £242 for the burial of Edmund.[9] He was buried in Westminster Abbey on 22 June 1500. He is buried near his sisters, Elizabeth and, three years later, Katherine Tudor, who also both died young.


  1. ^ a b Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Somerset, Earls and Dukes of" . Encyclopædia Britannica. Vol. 25 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 385.
  2. ^ a b Alison Weir, Britain's Royal Families: The Complete Genealogy (London, U.K.: The Bodley Head, 1999), page 152
  3. ^ Elizabeth of York: A Tudor Queen and Her World, Alison Weir, (New York: Balentine Books, 2013), p. 361.
  4. ^ Stephen, Leslie. Dictionary of National Biography, Volume 36 pp. 397–400 MacMillan: London, 1893
  5. ^ a b Sandford, Francis (1677). A genealogical history of the kings of England, and monarchs of Great Britain, &c. : from the Conquest, anno 1066, to the year 1677 : in seven parts or books containing a discourse of their several lives, marriages, and issues ... with their effigies, seals, tombs ... all engraven in copper plates : furnished with several remarques and annotations. Getty Research Institute. In the Savoy [London] : Printed by Tho. Newcomb for the author.
  6. ^ a b c The Life and Death of Edmund Tudor, Duke of Somerset, The Freelance History Writer, Retrieved 25/04 2020
  7. ^ a b Montgomery-Massingberd, Hugh (editor). Burke's Guide to the Royal Family, Burke's Peerage, London, 1973, p. 204. ISBN 0-220-66222-3
  8. ^ G.E. Cokayne; with Vicary Gibbs, H.A. Doubleday, Geoffrey H. White, Duncan Warrand and Lord Howard de Walden, editors, The Complete Peerage of England, Scotland, Ireland, Great Britain and the United Kingdom, Extant, Extinct or Dormant, new ed., 13 volumes in 14 (1910-1959; reprint in 6 volumes, Gloucester, U.K.: Alan Sutton Publishing, 2000), volume XII, page 58
  9. ^ Blood Sisters: The Women Behind the Wars of the Roses, Sarah Gristwood, (New York: Basic Books, 2013), 242.

External linksEdit

  • Hutchinson, John (1892). "Prince Edmund" . Men of Kent and Kentishmen (Subscription ed.). Canterbury: Cross & Jackman. pp. 42–43.