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How could she do it?
January 2, 2014
11:15 pm
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TudorFan
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Something that I have always thought of as being a bit odd, is not that Catherine of Aragon married her late husband’s brother as such, but that she married Henry even though he had only been a child when she first met him. After her marriage to Arthur, and during her widowhood, how much, if any, contact did she have with Henry?

January 3, 2014
2:44 am
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Anyanka
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Henry was 10 when 16 yo Katherine married Arthur…a 10yo Tudor child was an adult in miniture not a child as in the current Elizabethan age standard of childhood.

KoA had been brought up to realise her destiny as queen of England. Her parents had decided on the marriage as had Arthur’s. Neither Katherine nor Arthur had any reakl mput into the decision making process.

Once Arthur had died and a new treaty was signed between Henry VII and Ferdinand, her fate was re-sealed…Again, she wasn’t asked about the subject but expected to be obident to her elders’ wishes.

After many years of what Katherine considered penuary, H7 died and was succeeded by the young, handsome H8 who won constant praise especially when he decided to follow his brothal to Katherine with the Papal bulls whch allowed the marriage to go ahead.

As Katherine was not part of the offical court of H7. In fact some people think of her as a hostage or prisioner even though Katherine was granted the office of ambassador from Aragon to England, her chances of meeting Henry was very slim indeed.

One of the few times KoA was noted at being in the widower’s court was during the accidental visit of her sister, Juana and her husband following a ship-wreck off the English coast.

How much of the Aragon/English marriage was based on true attraction between equals and how much a match between 2 young and naive people clinging to each other out of not knowing any diiferent course of action is debatable.

It's always bunnies.

January 3, 2014
11:44 am
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Boleyn
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Marriages were all about politcal situations. K.O.A had little choice in the matter, even if she would have wanted to return home. Artur and K.O.A were betrothed at a very early age and she was brought knowing that she was to be queen of England, for her there was simply not other choice.
It does indeed sound a very strange arrangement to marry her to Henry after Arthur’s death, but to be fair this was quite a common arrangement.
K.O.A had 2 sisters, Isabella and Maria, both of these married Manuel of Portugal, so it wasn’t uncommon for this to happen.

H7 got extremely lucky in arranging a marriage with Spain, as the Tudor Dynasty was still seem by many as a flash in the pan sort of thing, wouldn’t last 5 minutes etc.. R3 (so Olga said I believe) called H7 a Welsh Milksop, basically I suppose that means a wanna be king. So for H7 to arrange a marriage with one of the most powerful ruling houses in the known world was a big cherry in his cocktail. When Arthur died there were probably a few people rubbing their hands together and saying “see told you so H7 is a complete loser can’t even produce a child that will live long enough to produce another Tudor heir, bah humbug to the Tudors.” So the solution was obvisious to marry K.O.A to the spare heir and hope that it works out.
England needed Spain more than Spain needing England to be honest. If K.O.A had returned to Spain after Arthur’s death, chances are it would have been very unlikely for her to have made another marriage elsewhere anyway, as she would have been viewed as spoiled goods, that sounds very cruel I grant you, but the whole crux of the matter as we were to find out later when H8 decided to trade her in was had her marriage to Arthur been consummated? If she had returned to Spain and another marriage arranged for her that Question would forever be a constant bugbear in a any marriage negotiations.
K.O.A knew that the minute she set sail from Spain that her destiny be it good or bad was in England.

Semper Fidelis, quod sum quod

January 4, 2014
1:46 pm
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TudorFan
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Hi, thank you for your replies. So Catherine wouldn’t have seen very much of Henry during her marriage to and widowhood of Arthur. I understand about not having much – if any – choice in the matter since it was all political, and that Catherine had been brought up accepting her destiny as Queen of England, but what puzzled me is that everything I’ve read suggests that they did, in the beginning, have a great attraction and love for each other and I have always thought it a little odd that she would have been attracted to him as a young man, having been introduced to him when he was a child. But if she didn’t see him much, or at all, during the intervening years, perhaps she was able to separate the child Henry of her memory from the young man Henry that she was now expected to marry.

Different times indeed.

I always feel sorry for Catherine. Having read Philippa Gregory’s The Constant Princess, I would love to think that her possible scenario was correct and that she and Arthur were passionate lovers. But sadly we will never know. The only people who will ever know are Catherine and Arthur themselves. I suppose that’s what makes history so interesting.

January 4, 2014
7:11 pm
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Always_the_Same
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Hi, I’m new here too.
I disagree with the theory that Catherine would be considered spoiled goods, she was a princess daughter of the most powerful couple in Europe, she would have no trouble getting a new marriage, I believe she was kept in England for dowry?
The question whether or not her can marrying Henry, was of primary importance that she had not had sex with Arthur, but if she had, would not be a impediment for her to marry any other prince, I believe

January 4, 2014
8:33 pm
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Sharon
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Boleyn, I’m not sure KOA would have been considered spoiled goods by other suitors. She would have been a young widow, with years of childbearing ahead of her. She would have been able to make another dynastic marriage. Her parents should have ordered her back to Spain immediately. It all came down to greed. As to her virginity, it wouldn’t have mattered one way or the other. I doubt that the question would have come up. Since she was a widow her husband-to-be would have gone to marriage thinking she was not a virgin. It was only Henry who made a big deal out of the virginity thing 20 years later. It didn’t seem important to him when he insisted on marrying her.

January 4, 2014
9:03 pm
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Anyanka
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She certainly wasn’t “spoiled goods” since she and Arthur were legally married and expected to have “done the deed” . Royal women, even widows could and did re-marry often to other royality as the shifting political alliences of Europe dicated.

Despite her value decreasing slightly in1504 following the death of her mother and the shattering of the united Spanish crowns. However with the Papal Bulls which allowed for the marriage to Henry regardless of whether the Arthur marriage had been consumated left Katherine as a valuble pawn in the Tudor court.

Katherine’s claim on Henry’s bethroal meant that in reality they were just short of marriage but she still could be displaced and the bethroal un-made should a better match be dangled unter H7’s nose.

It's always bunnies.

January 4, 2014
10:55 pm
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Boleyn
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Spoiled goods was a little harsh and cruel so slap on the wrist for me there..
But I do feel that once K.O.A came to England there was never any chance of her ever going back to Spain, even if she had wanted to, to be honest. That Henry Tulip had actually succeeded bagging such big prize in the first place meant there was no way he was going to turn around and said her home just because Arthur had died. There was talk of him marrying her himself, that would have sounded reasonable enough, but I don’t think either Ferdinand or Isabella cold have stomached that idea..
As I said in my last posting Henry Tulip needed Spain a lot more than Spain needed Henry Tulip. The other reason to why Henry Tulip wanted to keep K.O.A in England was because he would have to repay her dowry if he sent her home, and Henry Tulip was a bit of a greedy so and so when it came to money, understandable to some degree as I’m given to believe the country was near enough skint when Henry Tulip took the throne..

Semper Fidelis, quod sum quod

January 5, 2014
4:13 am
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MrsFiennes
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January 5, 2014
7:41 pm
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Sharon
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Anyanka said

She certainly wasn’t “spoiled goods” since she and Arthur were legally married and expected to have “done the deed” . Royal women, even widows could and did re-marry often to other royality as the shifting political alliences of Europe dicated.

Despite her value decreasing slightly in1504 following the death of her mother and the shattering of the united Spanish crowns. However with the Papal Bulls which allowed for the marriage to Henry regardless of whether the Arthur marriage had been consumated left Katherine as a valuble pawn in the Tudor court.

Katherine’s claim on Henry’s bethroal meant that in reality they were just short of marriage but she still could be displaced and the bethroal un-made should a better match be dangled unter H7’s nose.

And displaced she was. In 1505 as Henry was about to turn 14, he went before the Bishop of Winchester, and upon his father’s orders denounced the marriage treaty made while he was still a minor as null and void. He would not ratify it. This didn’t actually rule out the marriage, but it did mean that King Henry had a way out of the treaty. It was kept a secret from everyone, including Katherine. The original marriage treaty stated that there would be no wedding until the other half of the dowry was sent by Spain, and nothing was forthcoming.

January 6, 2014
12:12 am
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Boleyn
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This is true Sharon, and because of it poor K.O.A was forced to sell some of her plate so she and her household could eat, which Henry Tulip didn’t like very much. But he stated that it wasn’t his responsibility to look after her, she wasn’t married to Henry Junior so why should he provide for her.

I think Henry Junior did have some contact with her but how much I don’t know, but it must have been enough for her to get to know him so that the wedding night jitters she may have suffered with Arthur were not quite as bad.

I wonder did Henry Tulip agree for the marriage to take place on his death bed or was it Henry Junior’s idea.

Semper Fidelis, quod sum quod

January 6, 2014
3:39 am
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MrsFiennes
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I thought I read somewhere that it was Henry Sr last wish that Henry junior marry Katherine.Not sure where I read it so don’t know if that was the case.

January 6, 2014
10:51 am
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Boleyn
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I think that was the common belief MrsFiennes, but I’m really in 2 minds about it.
Why would Henry Tulip suddenly change his mind and say “Ok son marry her” on his death bed, when he had spent 7 years trying to backpeddle out of the whole marriage treaty, even going as far to bully (loosely worded) Henry Junior from renouncing the whole thing when he was 14.
Dr Dave seems to think it was a little more simplier than that, Henry Junior wanted to prove to the world that he was a man and capable to rule without the aid of a council.
Henry Tulip I believe set up a regency council, as he had doubts (if you like) that Henry Junior was able to take on the responsibility of ruling the country.
Henry Junior on the other hand wanted to flex and show off his power, and what better way to do it than by marriage, and the begetting of a child. I think Henry had some affection for K.O.A and this affection grew over time, to what could be in Faceache’s terms of love, but at the beggining it was all about showing off. K.O.A was very pretty when she was younger, but as we now her repeated pregnancies and miscarriages took it’s toll on her.
I’m inclined to think that it was his own idea to marry her, and he just said it was his father’s to make it sound good. As I think there were many who hated the idea of a Spanish marriage and would have perhaps if given the chance would have found a way of sending K.O.A home Spain and finding a bride for faceache whom they could perhaps control and thereby control faceache too, if that makes sence.
K.O.A after all acted as her own ambassador for Spain and I believe did a fairly admirable job too, which probably got up the noses of the senior members of the court.

Semper Fidelis, quod sum quod

January 6, 2014
11:29 am
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Bob the Builder
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personally i think Starkey is correct, in that Henry VIII’s marriage to CoA is his plan, done to demonstrate his sovereignty.

the evidence for a’break with his fathers government and policies is obvious – he breaks up his fathers government before HVII is even cold and executes two of the most senior/egregous members of that government, he identifies himself with his Yorkist/Plantagantet heritage – specifically Edward IV – rather than his Tudor heritage, and talks about himself being the ‘Summer King’, the the obvious suggestion that his father was the ‘Winter King’.

difficult, in light of that, to suggest that he then marries a woman at the request of his father…

January 6, 2014
3:02 pm
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MrsFiennes
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The source was Divorced,Beheaded,Survived by Karen Lindsey.I think it could be possible that there was a last wish by Henry VII,I think the problems with her dowry were a issue so maybe once it was no longer he gave HenryVIII the okay.HenryVII seemed to get very greedy when her dowry was not being payed and made Katherine live well below her standards during the four years she was engaged to Henry VIII.Katherine even wrote to her parents and family saying she was being mistreated.

January 6, 2014
4:04 pm
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Bob the Builder
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MrsFiennes said …HenryVII seemed to get very greedy when her dowry was not being payed and made Katherine live well below her standards during the four years she was engaged to Henry VIII.Katherine even wrote to her parents and family saying she was being mistreated.

its worth noting in the ‘Henry VII was a greedy misor’ debate that in the 400 years since the Norman conquest, only two Kings of England – Henry II, and Edward IV – had not left the Treasury in overall debt when they died. Henry VII undoubtedly was at the unattractive end of the financial prudence spectrum, and his methods ended up as good old-fashioned extortion and robbery, but he had genuine, good reasons for wanting a full piggy bank.

we may see the treatment of CoA as uncharitable, and its not something that a Father in Law ought to be proud of – but Ferdinand and Isabella made a deal, one they consistantly failed to hold themselves to. it is not surprising that Henry felt himself less than beholden to Catherine.

January 6, 2014
5:33 pm
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Boleyn
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I believe Henry Tulip did at one point say that it wasn’t his responsibility to provide for her since she was widow of one son and loosely engaged to other if that makes sence.
I do feel Henry Tulip treated K.O.A badly however, and I agree Bob, Henry Tulip was a complete miser, and I think his miserly attitude got worse after Elizabeth’s death. it was if money became his next wife if you get my drift.

I also agree that Starkey is right, Faceache wanted to show the world that he wasn’t a little boy, he was a man, I don’t know how faceache got on with MB, but I believe that she was perhaps a very dominant charater, and that she perhaps was a little critical of the way he behaved. Why did Henry Tulip even name a regency council?

I’m not too sure but I think H3 damn near crippled England financially too with his building programme.. He was know affectionately (maybe) as Henry the builder

Semper Fidelis, quod sum quod

January 8, 2014
3:13 pm
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Olga
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OK I think we need a little perspective here, and please don’t strangle me Sharon Laugh

Katherine was given an allowance of £1,000 per annum, which is more than £600,000 in today’s money. I think Katherine’s “penury” was her idea of penury. I don’t know if Henry lowered her income after her mother died, but when she first came to London he gave her £300 to get by three months and then set her yearly allowance at £1,000. De Puebla was so concerned about her spending that he wrote to her parents, she spent very freely and I don’t think she had a very good idea of handling money. They told her not to sell her plate or jewels as it was supposed to be part of her dowry, yet she did. She complained she didn’t have enough to eat but she sold bracelets to buy a velvet dress because she only had her brocades left, this is from her letter complaining to her father. Although she did say she had had no new dresses since she left Spain but I find that astonishing considering she would have had enough money to buy at least a few and I am surprised she never received any fabric for gifts. Elizabeth of York also sent her money and gifts while she was alive. The same letter mentions Henry also giving her food, which he told her he gave her out of his own goodwill because Ferdinand had still not paid the marriage portion Henry was owed. I think Katherine was prone to dramatics. I really don’t think her circumstances were that dire, her household was small and really shouldn’t have cost her that much to maintain, especially if Henry was sending food over. I am not 100% sure on the food but I am taking a guess there. Gifts of food were fairly common.
By the way Henry VIII had squandered the treasury in about three years Bo. Most of the money went to Henry’s failed military campaigns in the early years of his reign. Most of England’s kings built and renovated extensively, he wasn’t overly special in that department.

January 8, 2014
8:31 pm
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Sharon
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Ha Ha, Olga. You may not believe this, but I agree with everything you have said. Katherine could not live the way she thought she should. I agree, Katherine was a bit of a drama queen.

Did it take three whole years for Henry to go through the treasury? Seemed like it took less time than that. Wink

I was just reading in The Winter King where Fuensalida, the newly appointed ambassador from Spain, claimed in correspondence home that since VII had stated that VIII could marry where he wished, the bride would not be Katherine. He said VIII would find it a burden to marry his brother’s wife. As he was trying to explain to the new council why the dowry wasn’t paid, Thomas Ruthall came in from an adjoining room where he had been closeted with the new king. He interrupted the ambassador telling him Henry wasn’t worried about the dowry and that he was sure it would be paid, and he wanted to marry her asap.

January 8, 2014
10:06 pm
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Boleyn
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Olga, I’m with Sharon as well. I do think that K.O.A could be a little prone to hysterics of a sort, I also think she may have suffered from bouts of depression too., not as bad as her sister Juana however.

In someways she probably didn’t understand the value of money if that’s makes sence.
Only 3 years to spend the the whole treasury his father built up? gawd that’s going some and for what? H8 couldn’t of organised a decent P Up in a brewery, the bloke was an onanist seriously. He only went to France in to show off, and even then he did nothing special, a few skirmishes big deal. He made such a big deal out of the Battle of Spurs, saying that the French army was afraid of him blah blah, they were no more afraid of him as I am of the piece of Key lime (well british lime) pie I have on the plate in front of me? Which by the way is lovely with loads of whipped cream all over it.

So he captured a few towns but they weren’t of any great military or stategic importance. I’m inclined to think that Louis and Ferdinand were in collusion with each other in the sence of saying let the young cockerel fluff out his feathers let him think he’ll win and then we’ll clip his wings for him so to speak. I think King Louis was know as the black spider or something like that.
In short both King Louis and King Ferdinand made Faceache look a fool (actually he was fool) Ferdinand and Louis had made a treaty behind faceache’s back which we all know, but in order to save guard the treaty, they had to rob (loosely worded) the very person who could put a spanner in their plans, and that was Faceache. So get him to spend lavish amounts on going to war/poncing about France showing off playing the tin soldier, with the tin hat on, let him capture a few little insignifcant towns and pay for them to be fortified etc, that way when it comes out that we’ve come to terms he’ll be too broke to do anything about it.
When the muck hit the fan poor K.O.A rather got the blame for it, but that wasn’t her fault, yes she was Ferdinand’s daughter, but he was hardly going to tell her his plans concerning France, because her first duty was to her husband and to England to to her father or Spain anymore.
I think faceache had other plans for his sister Mary but after the fiasco on the France venture, and K.O.A’s truimph over the Scots. He needed money and fast so what does he do marry his siter to the very person who he was trying to show off too. Me thinks he made a complete fool of himself and I bet Ferdinand and Louis were wetting themselves with laughter at him.
Serves the fat git right.

I think H7 had Ferdinand’s measure ok he knew that what K.O.A brought over was all he would get, but on the other hand he couldn’t afford to send her home, that would have cost money, and H7 felt that Ferdinand owned him money so until Ferdinand coughed up K.O.A was going no where.

Semper Fidelis, quod sum quod

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