On Friday morning, the 19th of May 1536, that maid of the marvellous moxie took her place at the scaffold inside the Tower walls. Was she unhinged and flipping out, as portrayed in “The Other Boleyn Girl”?
Not from most accounts. Although it was said she looked absolutely wiped (lack of sleep can do that) and kept checking over her shoulder (perhaps for a last-minute reprieve?), she is said to have been the picture of composure and strength. That’s why I’m partial to Natalie Dormer’s portrayal from “The Tudors” and think that scene is so very touching.
Onlookers described Anne as having “a devilish walk” and “never look[ing] more beautiful,” “full of much joy and pleasure.” Her final speech was heartfelt yet professional.
And because the swordsman hid his sword in the straw and distracted Anne with the infamous “Hey, what’s that over there?” trick, she never saw it coming. Her Grace was poised to the end.