Recently I have been listening to the audio-books of Alison Weir’s Six Wives series. I have reached the most recently published (Jane Seymour: The Haunted Queen) and am dreading the moment when the gap between me finishing Jane Seymour and Anna of Kleve: Queen of Secrets comes out (published on 2 May 2019). The series is a far cry from my current essay topic on Nazi terror and that’s why I love it. So I decided to celebrate my love of the Six Queens with five info-graphics.
Birth and Death Comparison Chart
The only Queen older than Henry is Catherine of Aragon, who was six years Henry’s senior and died at the age of 51. Anne Boleyn was 35 when she was beheaded by the king so he could marry Jane Seymour, who tragically died due to complications from the birth of Henry’s only son: Edward VI, at the age of 29. Anne of Cleves was 42 when she died, in 1557, outliving both Henry and all the other queens. Katherine Howard was only 19 when she was beheaded for betraying Henry and Catherine Parr, who outlived Henry by a year, died in 1548, at the age of 36.
Oldest Queen at death: Catherine of Aragon
Youngest Queen at death: Katherine Howard
Henry was 56 when he died in 1547. He outlived four of his wives, but to be fair, he did behead two of them.
Time Married to Henry Pie Chart
This one is pretty self explanatory, but many people don’t realise how long Catherine and Henry were married for before he took up with Anne Boleyn. The two were married for 24 years in total; as Alison Weir calls her, she really was the true Queen. Anne of Cleves only lasted around 6 months, but that probably served her well, as she outlived Henry.
Children Who Survived and Died
Three of the Queens bore children for Henry: Catherine of Aragon, Anne Boleyn and Jane Seymour. Catherine was pregnant seven times with six who died either in infancy, were still born or miscarried. Her fifth child would succeed her father and become Mary Tudor. Anne’s first child was, to her dismay, a girl. Little did Anne know that this daughter would become one of the most famous Queens in history: Elizabeth I. She also miscarried two children, one of whom it was sure was a boy. Jane Seymour, who Henry is buried with, bore him his only surviving son, Edward VI; this birth killed her only weeks after.
Interesting Google Stats
When I decided to look up how many times the queens had been googled in 2018 I was surprised to learn that Anne Boleyn didn’t top the charts! Catherine of Aragon pipped her to the post with Jane Seymour coming in last – more googling of her this year please folks!
Last But Not Least…
The classic! I’m sure anyone who studied the Tudors in school knows this famous rhyme: Divorced, Beheaded, Died, Divorced Beheaded, Survived. A useful way to remember the queens fates at the hands of Henry!