This Day in History: 1537-05-15

On 15th May 1537, Lord Darcy, Constable of Pontefract Castle during the previous year’s Pilgrimage of Grace, was brought to trial in Westminster Hall on a charge of treason, chiefly drawn up by Thomas Cromwell, Lord Privy Seal, now one of his judges. Although Darcy pleaded not guilty and was expected by some to be acquitted, he was found guilty and scheduled to be executed four days later. This was postponed, however, as the King was undecided whether it would have a better effect if Darcy was executed in his own county and not London. The King’s letter to the Duke of Norfolk stated:‘ ……it should be meet to have them executed at Doncaster and thereabouts…..we think it should not be amiss that we should send the said Darcy, Constable and Aske down for that purpose; requiring you, with diligence, to advertise us of your opinion in that behalf.’ Norfolk advised against such.