Skip to main content

Tudor Power and Glory: The Field of Cloth of Gold

Lavish tents in a field with processions of of horses and knights

Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2019

The Field of Cloth of Gold was one of the most amazing political and sporting events ever staged.

The story of the event is told here through the Royal Armouries collection, including items belonging to and worn by King Henry VIII, images, animation, articles and loans from institutions such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

On mobile devices themes are best viewed in landscape orientation.

Held in the summer of 1520, the Field of Cloth of Gold aimed to cement the recent peace between Henry VIII of England and Francis I of France. For Henry VIII it was a chance to make his mark in Europe, but careful planning was necessary to make sure that neither king would outshine the other.

In the 1500s rulers across Europe began to view peace-making as a new way of establishing power, but bringing nations together after centuries of warfare was a difficult task. Years of diplomacy and months of preparation went into two weeks of friendly jousting, tourneys, foot combat and banquets between the former enemy nations.

Related stories

Load more