Elizabeth was born on 2 July 1492 at Sheen Palace in Surrey (later rebuilt by her father as Richmond Palace, the remains of which are now part of Richmond-Upon-Thames, London).
Elizabeth spent much of her short life at the royal nursery of Eltham Palace, Kent, with her older siblings Margaret (later Queen of Scotland) and Henry (the future Henry VIII). Elizabeth's oldest brother, Arthur, was heir to the English throne and so lived separately in his own household. Just before Elizabeth's death, her father proposed a marriage alliance between Elizabeth and the French prince Francis, who later became king as Francis I of France.
Elizabeth died at Eltham Palace in Kent on 14 September 1495 at the age of three years and two months. She was brought from Eltham in state and buried on the north side of the Chapel of St. Edward the Confessor in Westminster Abbey on 27 September. Elizabeth was the first of four of Henry and Elizabeth's children to die prematurely and they were greatly affected. The large sum of £318 (£155,479.74 in today's money) was spent on her funeral, and Henry erected a small tomb to his daughter in the abbey made from Purbeck and black marble. On top of the monument is a finely polished slab of black Lydian, upon which were placed inscriptions to Elizabeth and her effigy of copper gilt, both of which have now disappeared with time. The Latin from the inscription can be translated:
Elizabeth, second child of Henry the Seventh King of England, France and Ireland and of the most serene lady Queen Elizabeth his consort, who was born on the second day of the month of July in the year of Our Lord 1492, and died on the 14th day of the month of September in the year of Our Lord 1495, upon whose soul may God have mercy. Amen.
The plate at the feet of her effigy is translated:
Hereafter Death has a royal offspring in this tomb viz. the young and noble Elizabeth daughter of that illustrious prince, Henry the Seventh, who swayed the sceptre of two kingdoms, Attrapos, the most severe messenger of Death, snatched her away but may she have eternal life in Heaven.
The following year in 1496, Henry and Elizabeth had another daughter, Mary, who became the Queen of France. Their final two children, Edmund (who died in 1500 at the age of 15 months) and her younger sister Katherine (who died in 1503 shortly after birth) were laid to rest by young Elizabeth's side.
|Ancestors of Elizabeth Tudor (1492–1495)|
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