Thursday, 27 June 2013

The End of Two Tax Collectors

Richard Empson and Edmund Dudley worked for Henry VII performing a job just as unpopular then as it is know: tax collecting. Henry VII was determined to refill the treasury and managed to do so but not without the help of his hated tax collectors. But despite public opinion the two remained safe until Henry VII died.

After just a couple of days after the old monarch's death the newly crowned Henry VIII decided to do something to soothe the ill-will of his subjects. Consequently, Richard Empson and Edmund Dudley were brought before a jury and demanded to explain their aggressive methods. But the case was tricky. It had to be carried out without disgracing Henry VII but at the same time making it clear that they were actually guilty of treason. They were both convicted for treason (on the grounds of a royal warrant, not a bill of attainder) and sentenced to be beheaded in 1510 on Tower Hill.

And here we have the trio: Henry VII (centre),
Richard Empson (left) and Edmund Dudley (right)

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