Watch Lucy Worsley's 12 Days of Tudor Christmas on PBS Passport
Get a glimpse of historic holiday celebrations, Tudor style.
Historian, curator, and presenter Lucy Worsley has shared many interesting stories from British history through her television specials. Now, she’s exploring the Christmas traditions of of Henry VIII's 16th-century court. According to PBS, her recent program, Lucy Worsley’s 12 Days of Tudor Christmas, invites viewers to “Join Lucy Worsley on a 12-day extravaganza as she discovers that much of what we enjoy in contemporary Christmas—from carols to gift-giving, feasting and drinking—was just as popular 500 years ago, with some surprising Tudor twists.”
In her position as Joint Chief Curator at Historic Royal Palaces, Worsley has access to the locations in which some of the most fascinating moments in U.K. royal history have occurred. During the program, PBS says, “Lucy Worsley re-creates how Christmas was celebrated during the age of Henry VIII—eating, drinking, singing, dancing and partying like people did 500 years ago. She's getting into Tudor clothes, and inside Tudor minds—discovering the roots of some of the Christmas customs we still enjoy today, and exploring why other festive traditions fell out of favor.” You can watch a preview of the special below.
Tune into the show to see Lucy Worsley prepare two royal feasts in the kitchens of Hampton Court Palace, encounter carol singers performing a song written by the king himself, explain the origins of seasonal decorations and traditions, and get to the bottom of exactly how much people were spending on gift-giving during the Tudor period. PBS says, “[Worsley] discovers that the Tudor version of Christmas gift-giving was an occasion for very big spending. She even receives some of the presents that were offered to Henry VIII in 1532, which ranged from money and bling to a pair of greyhounds, and a giant boar spear from Anne Boleyn.”
What series and specials are you looking forward to watching curled up on the couch this holiday season?