April 10 – Margaret Tudor gives birth and the Gregorian Calendar
Posted By Claire on April 10, 2022
On this day in Tudor history, 10th April 1512, Margaret Tudor, Queen of Scots, eldest daughter of the late King Henry VII, and sister of King Henry VIII, gave birth to a boy who would become King James V of Scotland.
Find out more about James V, his life and reign, and his relationship with his uncle, King Henry VIII, in this video:
And on this day in 1585, Pope Gregory XIII died from a fever. He was succeeded by Pope Sixtus V.
Pope Gregory is known for his reform of the calendar. He introduced what is now called the Gregorian Calendar, or Western or Christian Calendar, replacing the Julian Calendar, which had been used since 45 BC.
But why was this reform needed and how was it done?
Find out more about it, and how England didn’t use it until the 18th century in this video:
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James V was described as having a handsome face, neither too tall not too short and his whole countenance was one of charm, but his critics denounced him as being full of filthy lust and his nine bastard children prove this beyond doubt, filthy lust however is not how I would describe this young man, he appears perfectly normal to me and merely acting how kings had always acted, it was Henry 1st of England who really fits that title, he was known to have sired thirty bastard children, but strangely as seems to be the lot of kings down the centuries, the begatting of legitimate heirs always seemed a problem for them, James never knew his father and it was a tragic twist of fate that he was to die in similar circumstances( albeit not in battle unlike James 1V), but the defeat of his army seemed to sink him into a very really depression from which he never recovered, he like his father left his throne to a mere infant, in his case a baby girl who grew up to be one of history’s most tragic figures, James was strong minded possibly a bit reckless, his desire to rule reminds me of the young Edward 111 who had had enough of the interference of his mother’s lover, Roger Mortimer, and was determined to break free of his shackles and rule his country himself, James was surrounded by old men and like any sixteen year old was determined not to be pushed around anymore, his mother the Queen dowager, Princess Margaret of England seems to have had her fair share of marital problems like her younger brother, Henry V111, she married three times and the last two were disastrous, her second marriage to the Archibald Douglas failed when she discovered he had a mistress, she divorced him, something which Henry V111 was against and wrote her a letter advising her to the contrary, Margaret must have ripped up the letter in anger, he was about to divorce his first queen and he was giving her marital advice! Archibald crossed the border to England taking his daughter with him and she grew up in the English court away from her mother, she was educated alongside her cousin Princess Mary and they became very close friends, as she grew older she matured into quite a beauty and was at the heart of a scandal involving a member of the noble Howard family, so James V rarely saw his half sister but he was surrounded by many of his numerous illegitimate relations at court, his mother headed into her third marriage by this time and James had married a noble French lady who sadly died young, after Anne Boleyn’s death his troublesome uncle searched throughout Europe for a fitting bride but he was met with suspicion and horror, Scotland and France had been allies for centuries and so he married another French noble lady Marie de Guise, like his ministers he must have believed a French union would cement their alliances more firmly, his second choice however made his uncle furious, Henry V111 had heard reports of Marie how buxom she was and he declared he like big women, alas was Marie’s response when she heard what the English king had said she may be big but she only had a little neck, her and James married and Henry must have been so furious he must have thought he was deliberately trying to wind him up ! These two kings one young and one ageing and world weary were close relations, but a blood link it seemed did not soften the enmity between them, a meeting was prepared between them with Henry taking his fifth queen along, but James was suspicious a trait he sadly did not pass onto his tragic daughter, he refused to meet his uncle and thus war was imminent, the old king by this time was not in a very forgiving mood and James was by now his enemy, the Battle of Solway Moss was a disastrous defeat for Scotland, like Flodden years before, he is said to have uttered on his deathbed referring to the birth of his daughter Mary, ‘the devil go with it, it came with a lass and will go with a lass’, he was right as it was his descendant Queen Anne who ended the Stuart dynasty, through her own childlessness, he was ill with a bad cold which could have turned bronchial, even so he was young to die, as discussed the depression he suffered from left him without the will to live, Antonia Fraser the biographer of Mary Queen Of Scots believes that she inherited the same character traits of her father, they were both prone to hysterical outbursts and melancholia as it was called, she believes also that both father and daughter suffered from porphyria which had a devastating effect on ones mental health, Henry V111 when he made his will eradicated his sister Margaret’s family in favour of those of his youngest sister Mary Duchess of Suffolk, as swiftly as one swats a fly from a jam jar, this enmity continued through the next generation as his daughter Elizabeth was to troubled by the legitimate claims of all her Grey cousins and that of Mary too, the deaths of all three of his offspring without heirs themselves only paved the way for the heirs of Margaret his elder sister, Henry had deliberately barred them from the succession, but now Elizabeth was queen, she did not share the same enmity as her father had, she was a woman after all and her reign had been a peaceful one, she wished a peaceful succession to, on her deathbed she gave a sign that James V1 was to take care of her realm he was a mature man, no young foolish boy, he was wise and she knew he would take care of her realm, so James 1V’s death and that of his son James V, both in tragic circumstances and that of Queen Mary to, did not hinder their descendant from inheriting his glorious birthright, James V1 also did not have the same reckless traits as his mother and grandfather, he was also very fertile to, he married his danish bride and they had several children who survived, through James V1 the blood of James V and his descendants today flows in the veins of the current monarch and her family.