30 November 1529 – Catherine of Aragon and Anne Boleyn get cross with Henry VIII

henry_viii_anne_boleyn_katherine_of_aragonOn 30th November 1529, Henry VIII was reproached by the two women in his life: his wife, Catherine of Aragon, and the woman he wanted to marry, Anne Boleyn.

An angry Catherine of Aragon confronted her husband regarding his treatment of her, which she considered “the pains of Purgatory on earth”, and then when the King sought comfort from Anne Boleyn she reproached him for giving Catherine the “upper hand”. Oh dear!

Click here to read the accounts of what happened between Henry and these two women on that day in 1529.

Also on this day in history, 30th November 1601, Elizabeth I, daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, delivered her famous “Golden Speech” to the House of Commons. It was the last speech that she gave to Parliament, and in it she spoke of her position as Queen and her love and respect for her realm and for her members of Parliament. Click here to read the speech.

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2 thoughts on “30 November 1529 – Catherine of Aragon and Anne Boleyn get cross with Henry VIII”
  1. I could not resist this post.
    It all began like a french vaudeville, but well, we know how tragic the end.
    King Henry, playing the victim in a “love triangle” ? It is a point of view.
    We got, on the one hand, the lawful wife, well aware of her legitimacy (all the more when this one happens to be a queen and was born a princess in her own rights).
    On the other, the mistress, strong only of what the “feeble” married man promised to her.
    So of course, her arguments here are neither romantic, nor “grand”.
    Especially to modern women .
    But that was the fact by the time; she claimed for some legitimacy in her relation to her king, she recalls to him how many chances she lost to become a honest, respected woman.
    If not married, a she-lover was socially dead.
    As we don’t know who is wrong or right, we tend to pity the husband.
    But in this case, knowing what is to come next, we perfectly see it was all H VIII’s project: leave his infertile (by now) wife, to marry a younger, able to give him males as his heirs.
    It makes me remember of the story of a young Louis XIV, when he was ordered to break off his relation to Giuseppe Mazzarini’s niece, Maria Mancini; this one, reproaching his weakness was heard telling “Vous êtes roi, vous pleurez et je pars”.
    This word is said to have inspired Racine in his “Tite et Bérénice”,it is just to say how close we are to tragic.
    Less sad in the case of the french king; he was not yet married (to a spanish princess, his cousin), let’s say he was less cynical than “our” K H on this occasion.
    And he was only 21 and just did not know that his duty as a king surpassed his tender feelings to another young girl.
    We can link these domestic quarrels with another recent post, i.e. Wolsey’s fall.
    It was just one year after and I do think it was the “beginning of the end” for K H.
    He had a good councillor he could rely on.
    Just a wife, he was not satisfied of and a demanding “betroth” (in words).
    After so many treasons (well it was he who betrayed Wolsey, not the contrary, even if this one was by no means a saint), so many broken hearts, his views certainly became somewhat more cynical, his trust in others (friends and women) more or less tarnished.

  2. Well Henry really had stored up trouble for himself, firstly by allowing Catherine to remain in the palace for so long, to have her royal household to quite rightly remain fully established and secondly by dangling his mistress under the court’s nose as if she were queen already. Catherine was bound to complain good and proper eventually. What did he expect, that the daughter of a warrior queen would simply bat her eyelashes while he neglects her? Catherine was well aware of his attempt to get the divorce by back door methods and she was not impressed. For every one scholar Henry got she could get 1000. Yes, love it. Katherine had clearly had enough of the whole situation, decided to assert her rights as queen and Henry was not going to get away with anything, at least not without Katherine having her say. She gave him a right earful, good for her. In the long run it would not stop him deserting her and ordering her to leave the court and not come back, but for now, with the legal battle still raging Katherine had the upper hand. In fact at one point Henry had for a short time returned to Katherine’s bed for appearances sake so she could not claim he was denying her rights as queen. Katherine also still made his shirts. Anne lost it on that occasion and shortly after Henry ordered Katherine to leave.

    What does Henry do? He does what all husbands do, goes to find comfort from Anne with the my wife doesn’t understand me routine. Anne has even less patience with Henry than Katherine and berates him for arguing with Katherine or reasoning with her. By bewailing her lot, that he will give in and abandon her, she has wasted her life, she could have been married with kids by now, her youth has gone, he will never leave Katherine, and threatening to go home and not returning, Anne manipulates Henry into accepting her point of view and demands he does something about it. This is not what Henry expected, but probably what he deserved. What a nightmare. Two nagging women in one day. He probably went a lay down in a dark room with a cool cloth over his eyes after that lot.

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