The Six Wives of Henry VIII

Henry VIII is known as the English Monarch who had six wives and here I will tell you a little bit about each of his wives. But first, an entertaining YouTube video:-

The Six Wives of Henry VIII

Catherine of Aragon

Catherine of Aragon

Anne Boleyn

Anne Boleyn

Jane Seymour

Jane Seymour

Motto and Crest “Humble and Loyal”

Pomegranate with crown.

“The Most Happy”

Crowned falcon on tree stump with red and white flowers.

“Bound to Obey and Serve”

Crowned phoenix rising out of a castle with red and white roses.

Date of Birth 16th December 1485 Warnicke thinks 1507, but most historians think 1501 due to a letter that Anne wrote in 1513 when she was a maid of honour in Brussels – this position would be open to a 12/13 year old not a 6 year old. Thought to be 1508 or 1509

Elizabeth Norton thinks between Oct 1507 and 1508 because 29 ladies rode in her funeral procession (1 for each year).

Who were they? Catalina de Aragón.

Daughter of Isabella and Ferdinand of Spain.

Previously married to Prince Arthur but marriage was not consummated.

Daughter of diplomat, Thomas Boleyn, and Elizabeth Boleyn (nee Howard) Eldest daughter of Sir John Seymour and Margery Wentworth
Date of Marriage and Duration 11th June 1509

Nearly 24 years, annulled in May 1533.

Either November 1532 or January 1533

Just over 3 years.

Betrothed for 7 years.

30th May 1536

17 months

Death 7th January 1536 19th May 1536 24th October 1537
Cause of Death Traditionally assumed to be cancer, although autopsy points to coronary thrombosis. Beheaded for treason, adultery and incest by a French swordsman Thought to be an infection following childbirth.
Age at Death 50 Either 35 or 29 Around 29
Children Mary (later Mary I)

Born 18th February 1516

Elizabeth (later Elizabeth I)

Born 7th September 1533

Edward (later Edward VI)

Born 12th October 1537

Biography “The Divorce of Catherine of Aragon: The Story as Told by the Imperial Ambassadors Resident at the Court of Henry VIII by J A Froude Eric Ives’ “The Life and Death Of Anne Boleyn”
Joanna Denny’s “Anne Boleyn: A New Life of England’s Tragic Queen”
Retha Warnicke’s “The Rise and Fall of Anne Boleyn”
Elizabeth Norton’s “Jane Seymour: Henry VIII’s True Love”
Anne of Cleves

Anne of Cleves

Catherine Howard

Catherine Howard

Catherine Parr

Catherine Parr

Motto “God Send Me Well to Keep”

A gold escarbuncle.

“No Other Will than His”

Crowned red and white thornless Tudor rose

“To Be Useful in All That I Do”

Crowned maiden rising from a Tudor Rose.

Date of Birth 22nd September 1515 1518/1521 1512
Who were they? Daughter of Johann III, Duke of Juliers-Cleves and Maria, heir of Juliers Cousin of Anne Boleyn, daughter of Lord Edmund Howard and Elizabeth Tilney. Second child and eldest daughter of Sir Thomas Parr of Kendal, Westmoreland and Maud Green.
Date of Marriage and Duration 6th January 1540

6 months

15th July 1540

About 19 months

12th July 1543 (Henry was her third husband)

Until Henry VIII’s death on 28th January 1547.

Death 6th July 1557 13th February 1542 5th September 1548
Cause of Death Unknown Beheaded for adultery and treason Illness following childbirth
Age at Death 41 Late teens/early 20s About 31
Children None Non Daughter Mary Seymour by her 4th husband Sir Thomas Seymour.
Biography Elizabeth Norton’s “Anne of Cleves: Henry VIII’s Discarded Bride” Lacey Baldwin Smith’s “Catherine Howard: The Queen Whose Adulteries Made a Fool of Henry VIII” Susan James’ “Catherine Parr: Henry VIII’s Last Love”

Thanks to members of The Anne Boleyn Files Wiki for filling in the information on the Six Wives of Henry VIII.

3 Responses to “The Six Wives of Henry VIII”

  1. Kiki says:

    Hello! I just wanted to let you know of some other biographies on Katharine of Aragon and Jane Seymour:
    For Katharine: Catherine of Aragon by Garrett Mattingly
    For Jane: Jane the quene, Third consort of Henry VIII by Pamela Gross

    [Reply]

  2. Claire says:

    Thanks, Kiki, I’ll definitely look into those.

    [Reply]

  3. Lauren says:

    is it acceptable to use the pictures on this website on a school project?

    [Reply]

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