A 19th century rendition of the execution of Margaret Pole, Countess of Salisbury in May 1541.
The 67-year-old Margaret was beheaded in the Tower of London due to Henry VIII's hatred of her family. Her son Reginald (later Archbishop of Canterbury under Queen Mary) had written a book denouncing England's break from the Church in Rome.
Henry retaliated by accusing Margaret and members of her family of high treason. Her other son Baron Montagu was executed, and Margaret afterwards.
Contrary to popular belief, she was not chased around the scaffold as this print here shows. Still, she was dispatched by a 'wretched and blundering youth who literally hacked her head and shoulders to pieces in the most pitiful manner', it was reported.
Margaret Pole (by the 'Cast Shadow Master Painter', probably Lucas Horenbout)