Katherine Grey died in 1568 after years of food refusal, imprisoned by Elizabeth I for her clandestine marriage to Edward Seymour in 1561. Moreover, the intimacy granted by Katherine’s appointment meant that she was precisely one of those ladies responsible both for waiting on Elizabeth in her most private moments and used in public to reinforce the latter’s rituals of majesty and power. Elizabeth’s repeated insistence on her status was entirely justifiable; Katherine was on much more dangerous ground. Unfortunately, if Elizabeth’s fertility was in doubt, Katherine proceeded to demonstrate hers unequivocally. The fusion of internal emotional and spiritual reality with external manifestation in the letter’s symbolic language suggests Katherine’s self-starvation constructed her body as the nexus between the two. Food deprivation can provide intense physical sensation, and this might both distract her from her emotional situation and have given her a focus.