Sir Walter Raleigh's Medicinal Garden at the Tower
About this learning resource
Sir Walter Raleigh was imprisoned at the Tower of London for 13 years. Under constant threat of execution, Raleigh struggled with poor mental health. This lesson pack explores how this soldier and explorer helped rebuild his own mental health and wellbeing by developing a medicinal garden outside his prison cell at the Tower and preparing plant-based remedies. Students compare the ingredients Raleigh used in his medicines, as well as the medical treatments and beliefs of the late 1500s and early 1600s, with today.
National Curriculum links
- Extend and deepen their chronologically secure knowledge and understanding of British, local and world history
- Identify significant events, make connections, draw contrasts
- Pursue historically valid enquiries
- Learn about Sir Walter Raleigh through the story of his imprisonment in the Tower of London and his medicinal garden
- Understand that Raleigh’s physical and mental health suffered during his imprisonment and identify some of the causes of this
- Understand continuity and change in the history of medicine by recognising that plants are still used today in pharmaceutical drugs and herbal remedies
- KS3 (age 11-14)
- Crime & Punishment
- For the classroom
- Tower of London
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