|Elizabeth wearing one of her mother's |
initial pendants, a letter "A"
From the ring she always wore that secretly concealed her mother's portrait, and the favor she showed her maternal relatives, Elizabeth held her mother's memory in honor, though she could never publicly speak about Anne Boleyn. To decree that her mother was innocent would be to defy her father, and the justice system as a whole. Some of the lords on the jury that condemned Anne were still living, and to say their verdict was unjust would be to call their integrity into question. It was a can of worms Elizabeth just couldn't open.
|Courtesy of Findagrave.com|
When Elizabeth was a prisoner there under the reign of her sister, she probably was never given the opportunity. There is some debate as to whether she was imprisoned in the Bell Tower or the royal apartments (which are no longer extant.)
In either case, she was eventually given a small measure of liberty to walk around the top of the wall or in the garden behind the royal apartments, but she would not have been allowed to walk all the way across the Green to the chapel. She would not even have been able to see the chapel, if she was lodged in the queen's apartments.
As queen, Elizabeth only stayed at the Tower of London a few times, probably because of its ugly memories and association. She stayed for a several days when she took symbolic possession of the Tower upon ascending to the throne in late November, 1559 and then the night before her coronation ceremony, as was the tradition. She left on the morning of her coronation and to my knowledge, never returned.
We have no record of Elizabeth ever visiting the chapel of St. Peter-ad-Vincula, but that's not certain proof that she didn't. But it wouldn't ordinarily be a place that a king or queen would go, and so it would have required a special trip, and thus been notable.
Elizabeth would not have attended religious services St. Peter-ad-Vincula, which was essentially a parish church for the soldiers, servants, and their families. The royal family worshipped at the Chapel of St. John on the second floor of the White Tower, or Elizabeth could have a private service in the chapel of the royal apartments (where Anne Boleyn received her last communion).
St. Peter-ad-Vincula was on the other side of the Tower from where the royal apartments were located, which meant a quiet private visit could not be accomplished. To get there, Elizabeth would have had to march past the Jewel House with its staring guards, through the Coldharbor Gate, across the wide expanse of the Green, trailing a large herd of ladies-in-waiting and curious courtiers. It would have caused a stir of gossip, something Elizabeth was trying hard to avoid.
With these factors in mind, it's unlikely Elizabeth ever visited Anne Boleyn's grave. But she honored her mother's memory in many other ways.