Henry VII became King in 1485, followed by Henry VIII. They were the first Tudor kings ( Tudor was their family name).
London grew in importance under the Tudor rule. It became the centre of trade and government. By the end of the Tudor era there were about 200,000 people living in London.
King Henry VIII created palaces such as St James. He is also famous for closing the cities monasteries in 1536, after the Roman Catholic church refused to grant him a divorce. During the reign of Elizabeth l, London was wealthy and successful city. Theatre became popular, helped by the arrival of playwright William Shakespeare sometime between 1585 and 1593.
The most famous theatre is The Globe, in which Shakespeare owned a share. His plays were performed there. The original theatre was burnt down in 1613 and immediately rebuilt, but closed by the Puritans in 1642. In the 1990s a new Globe Theatre was built, as close to the original as possible, and thrives with constant productions of Shakespeare’s plays.
The River Thames was very important in Tudor times as Britain’s navy was expanded. Dockyards were built and ships were sent to explore the world.
Find out more about Tudor Britain.
The gate to the Priory Church of St Bartholomew the Great (pictured below) is one of the earliest surviving Elizabethan timber-frame house fronts in London. It was built by William Scudamore in 1595. Part of the stone gate date from 1240, but most of the stonework was installed during restoration in 1932.
Gate to Priory Church of St Bartholomew in West Smithfield
One of the earliest surviving timber-frame house fronts in London built 1595