Was the title of the documentary on Channel 5 (UK) last night.
Historian, Paul Doherty, whilst researching the Calendar of State Papers,came across a collection known as The Englefield Letters.These have raised doubts in his mind regarding the purity of the Queen.
Sir Francis Englefield was a blind, exiled English Catholic, living in Spain and he was asked to interrogate a certain Arthur Dudley who had been captured in the Bay of Biscay. This Arthur Dudley was steadfast in his claim that he was none other than the illegitimate son of Elizabeth and Robert Dudley.
The "proof" (as Mr. Doherty claims);
1) In 1559, Elizabeth moved Robert into a bedchamber next to hers.
2) Kat Ashley is distraught at the rumours surrounding the couple.
3) In 1560, Cecil "forsees the ruin of the realm through Robert's relationship with the Queen" repeating the rumour that Dudley plans the murder of his wife, Amy Robsart.
Evidence of a pregnancy;
1) In 1561, the Queen withdraws from the public eye...she is swollen up with Dropsy (" she has begun to swell extraordinarily"- Spanish Ambassador)
2) The rumours of a sexual liason with Dudley persist.
3) Other court ladies managed to conceal their pregnancies.
At the end of 1561, a newborn baby boy was smuggled out of Hampton Court by Robert Southern- a relative of Kat Ashley. He raises the boy as his own with "great care and delicacy"
Elizabeth wrote her own prayers, usually "sonorous, bland and politician-like", according to Mr. Doherty.
But in 1562, she composes a different series of prayers, writing about herself and her sins. Allegedly confessing to a sexual sin?? and a great sacrifice in her life.
Arthur Dudley discovered his "true" lineage from his "father" Robert Southern- his deathbed confession revealing his illegitimacy and adoption and his "true" parentage.
In Salamanca- The National Archives of Spain are kept and Doherty found page after page regarding Arthur Dudley. Letters written by the English spy (code-name B.C.) corroborates the evidence, describes Arthur Dudley in synopsis and everything Englefield says. He states that Arthur does indeed resemble Robert Dudley and is 27 years old or there abouts, giving him a birth date of 1561.