The narrative of Henry VIII and his six wives is well-told in the well-known historical rhyme: Divorced, Beheaded, Died, Divorced, Beheaded, Survived. It’s implied in the poem that he had a final wife, Catherine Parr, but is that actually the case? What about his fourth wife, Anne of Cleeves, whom he referred to as his “beloved sister”?
Henry VIII married Anne of Cleeves, a German princess, after the death of his first true wife, Jane Seymour, during delivery. The couple had never met, but they were able to send each other photos, which they both liked, and the marriage was set up. Henry, disguised as Anne, was claimed to be disappointed when he saw her for the first time; he felt tricked that she wasn’t as portrayed.
After their wedding on January 6, 1540, the king was already considering methods to get out of the deal, and their previous political partnership was becoming less significant. For her ugliness, Henry referred to Anne as his ‘Flanders’ Mare’. The fact that he had developed feelings for Katherine Howard, a popular young woman, didn’t help matters.
Life in Childhood and Adolescence
Her mother, Maud Green, Was the Daughter and Co-Heiress of Sir Thomas Green, Lord of Greens Norton, Northamptonshire, as well as Joan Fogge. Catherine Parr Was the Eldest Child of Sir Thomas Parr of Kendal, Westmorland (now Cumbria), and Maud Green. as A Direct Descendant of King Edward Iii, Sir Thomas Parr Hailed from A Noble Northern Lineage that Had Produced Several Notable Knights. Both William, Catherine’s Older Brother, and Anne, Her Younger Sister, Went on To Become the First Marquess of Northampton. He Was Rewarded for His Friendship with Henry Viii by Being Appointed Sheriff of Northamptonshire, Master of Wards, and Comptroller to The King in Addition to Being the Lord of Kendal, Which He Held for Many Years. a Personal Companion and Attendant of Catherine of Aragon, Her Mother Was Likely Named Catherine Parr in Honor of The Queen, Who Served as Her Godmother.
She Was Presumably Born in August of 1512. Catherine Parr Was Once Considered to Have Been Born in Westmorland at Kendal Castle. in Contrast, Kendal Castle Was Already in A Bad State of Repair at The Time of Her Birth. It Was Necessary for The Parr Family to Live at Their Blackfriars Townhouse During Maud’s Pregnancy Because She Was Still Attending the Queen. Historians Today Believe that Sir Thomas Would Not Have Accompanied His Pregnant Wife on An Exhausting Two-Week Journey North Over Terrible Roads to Give Birth in A Dilapidated Castle in Which neither Of Them Seemed to Spend Much Time. Catherine’s Father Died While She Was a Child, Thus She Grew up With a Close Relationship with Her Mother.
Prior to His Death, Henry Left Catherine an Annual Allowance of £7,000 for Her to Live On. in Addition, He Stipulated that Although Though Catherine Was the Dowager Queen of England at The Time of Her Death, She Should Be Treated as If He Were Still Alive. in 1547, upon The Crowning of Her Stepson Edward Vi, Catherine Retreated to Her Chelsea Mansion, Old Manor, and Resigned from Court Life.
As a result of Henry’s Demise, Thomas Seymour (who Was Subsequently Elevated to The Rank of Baron Seymour of Sudeley) Returned to Catherine’s Court. when Seymour’s Marriage Proposal Was Renewed, Catherine Was Quick to Accept.
Even Though King Henry Died only Four Months Before, Seymour Knew that No Regency Council Member Would Accept A Petition to Marry Queen Dowager. Catherine and Seymour Secretly Wed at The End of May. There Was a Delay of Several Months Before King Edward Vi and His Council Was Told About the Union. They Became the Subject of A Small Scandal when Their Union Was Made Public Knowledge. Both the King and Lady Mary Were Enraged at The Arrangement. Angered by The Council’s Treatment of Him, Seymour Turned to The Lady Mary for Assistance. Mary Was Enraged by His Overt and Insensitive Behavior, and She Refused to Help. so Far as Requesting Her Half-Sister Lady Elizabeth Not to Speak to Queen Catherine Again, Mary Went All the Way to That.
To Whom Did Henry Wed Katherine?
When Thomas Seymour Proposed in 1543, Katherine Had Previously Been Married (and Divorced) Twice, but She Was Smitten. to Marry the King, She Had to Give up On Him.
In Her Devotion to God’s Will, and Perhaps as A Practical Realization that Henry Wouldn’t Be There Forever, She Made This Decision.
On July 12, 1543, at Hampton Court Palace, Katherine and Henry Were United in Marriage.
Katherine Was the First English Monarch to Create and Publish Her Own Works, and She Was a Passionate Supporter of The Arts in The Monarchy.
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