The Field of Cloth of Gold

The Field of Cloth of Gold

YouTube link to Field of Cloth of Gold In 1520 Henry VIII met Francis I, King of France, at the Field of Cloth of Gold. The aim was to make England and France allies rather than enemies.

To celebrate their new friendship and trust, Henry and Francis held tournament games which lasted 11 days. Wrestling and archery contests took place when the weather was too bad for jousting or tourneys.

The two kings wanted to show off their wealth, power and athletic skills. They were meant to compete side by side, not against one another. However, Henry VIII challenged Francis I to a wrestling match and was thrown by a cunning French move!

The painting is a story picture that shows many events during the three-week gathering in June 1520.

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The related documents below free articles from Henry VIII: Arms and the Man.
This major publication Henry VIII: Arms and the Man and can be purchased from The Royal Armouries Shop.


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  • Published to coincide with the 500th anniversary of the accession of King Henry VIII to the English throne. This definitive publication illustrates and records over 90 Henrician treasures from the Royal Armouries own collections and from around the world.

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