||Jane Grey was a member of aristocracy in the British Isles.|
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|Queen of England (disputed)
10 Jul 1553 - 19 Jul 1553 (9 days)
Lady Jane Grey was born the eldest daughter of Henry and Frances Grey (née Brandon), Duke and Duchess of Suffolk, about 1536 or 1537 in Bradford, Leicestershire. Her mother Frances was the daughter of King Henry VIII's sister Mary Tudor making Jane and her two sisters Lady Catharine and Lady Mary great-granddaughters of King Henry VII, as well as first cousins once removed of Edward VI, Mary I, and Elizabeth I. This gave all three of them a claim to the English throne.
Lady Jane was educated well from childhood, including tutelage in Greek, Latin and Hebrew. She was learned enough in Greek to be able to read Plato in its original language of print, and appeared to prefer reading to joining her family on hunting trips.
In 1547, Jane was sent to live in the home of Thomas Seymour, where she remained until the death of Seymour's wife Queen Dowager Catherine Parr due to complications of childbirth in 1548. Similarly to Jane, Catherine was well educated and it is possible that she was a considerable influence on the young woman.
Jane was married to Lord Guildford Dudley, a younger son of the Duke of Northumberland, on 25 May 1553. At this point in time, the Duke was Lord President of the King's Council and thus the most powerful man in the country.
In the summer of 1553, King Edward VI was dying. At the time, his Catholic half-sister Mary was his heir presumptive to the throne as he had no children and Mary was the eldest of his siblings. Earlier in the year, Edward drafted a will in which he named his cousin Jane, who was Protestant, "and her heirs male" as his successors. This was potentially a decision instigated by the Duke of Northumberland, in order to ensure the legacy of Edward's Protestant reign.
The King's death was not announced until four days after, during which time Jane was informed that she was now Queen on July 9. She was officially proclaimed "Queen of England, France and Ireland" the following day, after taking up residence in the Tower of London. Residence in the Tower was customary for English monarchs in the timeframe between accession and coronation.
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