No, I'm not abandoning my blog; however, there's lots going on so I thought I'd drop an update here. First, I did very little last year at this site since I spent my spare time writing a rather involved research paper for the Tudor Society, including lots of paleography and Latin translation. That paper got me something I've been working toward for a long time now: a request from a real world publisher for me to write a real book. So now I'm working on writing a biography of Henry Parker, Lord Morley, who is probably the most important early-Tudor man of letters you've never heard of... No, seriously, the problem with Tudor history is that everyone fixates on the soap opera of Henry the VIII and his too-many wives, two of whom he executed. Such a nice guy!

Lord Morley's wife was Henry VIII's second cousin, and he was Henry VIII's third cousin once removed by marriage, and Henry VIII's actual eleventh cousin four times removed (or something like that...but I'm too lazy this morning to recount it to be sure). He was the Baron of Morley, Marshal and Rhie, which made him one of the most senior barons in the kingdom and a descendant of the Norman conquerors of England. He grew up in the household of Margaret Beaufort, Countess of Richmond, who was the mother of Henry VII. His mother was a cousin of the infamous Viscount Lovell, Lord Chamberlain to Richard III and his father was one of Richard III's privy counselors and one of his banner bearers at the Battle of Bosworth.

Henry Parker was the first translator of both Plutarch and Petrarch into English. That's why he's important to the world of English literature. He's also one of the two most quoted primary sources on the life of Margaret Beaufort.

The reason Henry Parker is interesting is because he lived and observed first-hand the courts of six different sovereigns of England, making him the proverbial fly-on-the-wall for most of the important events of pre-Tudor and early-Tudor times. His letters and literary works capture a unique viewpoint of Tudor history. He played an extremely minor role politically but he present for almost everything major that happened with Henry VIII. And last, and actually in my book, least: he was the father of the infamous Lady Rochford, one of the best known, most reviled and falsely maligned "traitors" of Henry VIIi's reign.

Unlike several of his peers and colleagues from the Tudor court, Henry Parker, Lord Morley managed to die peacefully in his own bed. Given his very close ties to both the Boleyns and the Howards, factional families who were "lightened" of both influence and a few heads, that' an accomplishment. In that respect at least, he resembles Claudius, the great survivor of the early Roman Empire.

I'm thinking of titling the book as "Father of a Traitor" only because it is an attention-getter, with the subtitle of "the most important early Tudor man of letters you've never heard of." A good title and a good cover are everything in the book business. Anyway, that's what's up while I'm neglecting my various blogs (this isn't my only one) so hang in there for a few more months. I hope to be done writing by December 2016.