Yes, in the 1st six terms of Olivier Award–nominated musical Six, we learn the fate of each and every of Henry VIII’s spouses. But exactly how much do you realize about their everyday lives?
Writers Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss dug in to the history of Tudor England together with royal court for the words with their pop music opera, and greater historic knowledge means greater admiration of this nuances in Marlow and Moss’ writing. Listed below are the CliffsNotes that will help you navigate this chapter in Uk history.
Catherine of Aragon Queen from 1509–1533The “paragon of royalty” had been the wife that is first of VIII. a princess that is spanish she ended up being the child of Isabelle and Ferdinand, thus the Latin beats and Spanish trumpets inside her Six solo “No Way.” Catherine first married Arthur (Henry’s older cousin and heir obvious to your English throne) in 1501 whenever she ended up being 15. But five months after their wedding, Arthur passed away. Arthur’s dad almost needed to get back her dowry, but a King could not spend money—or alliances that are european. He married her down to their more youthful son, Henry VIII, in 1509, though Henry ended up being 5 years her junior. She faithfully served England, ruling as regent in 1513 when Henry ended up being away in France. But once she didn’t produce a male heir, things got complicated. Along with her pregnancy that is fifth provided delivery to Mary (the long run Mary we of England), but Henry became preoccupied with siring a kid. He became believing that their wedding to their brother’s widow ended up being cursed by Jesus, or, as Catherine sings, “You state it is a pity ‘cause quoting Leviticus ‘I’ll find yourself kidiless all my entire life.’”
It’s commonly thought he utilized the Bible as a reason to divorce the princess that is spanish a plan to marry her woman in waiting, Anne Boleyn. Catherine ended up being furious he cast her apart; she had tolerated their affairs (“I’ve never destroyed control regardless of how times that are many knew you lied”) as any Queen ended up being anticipated. More over, Catherine maintained that she had never ever consummated her wedding to Arthur—so that is the wedding which was null. Complicated, we understand. Whilst the track shows, Catherine declined an annulment, claiming until her death that she had been the rightful Queen. Catherine had been provided for a “nun-ry” but sooner or later relocated to The greater amount of Castle. She passed away in 1536 during the chronilogical age of 50, nevertheless maintaining she had been the only real wife that is legitimate of VIII.
Anne Boleyn Queen from 1533–1536Though affairs involving the King and their Queen’s feamales in waiting were common and anticipated, no body expected him to go out of Catherine to wed Anne—the sis of his mistress that is former that. Anne was raised in the court associated with the Queen of France before going back house to England to participate the royal court.
Anne Boleyn is usually depicted once the wife that is devious presumably plotting to dethrone Catherine—unsatisfied to be just a mistress, “some woman in a threesome.” Henry and Anne married in key January 25, 1533; they got the Archbishop to declare Henry’s wedding to Catherine null along with his marriage that is new to valid—thus breaking through the Catholic Church and starting the Church of England. Anne had been crowned queen June 1, 1533; she quickly offered delivery to a woman, the long run Elizabeth I. But after three miscarriages, Henry took a brand new mistress: Jane Seymour. Needing option to rid himself of Anne, Henry reported that Anne had bewitched him as he ended up being hitched to Catherine. Anne maybe flirted with a few men “just to help make him jel,” but that merely resulted in accusations of incest and adultery. She was beheaded in the Tower of London may 15, 1536, at age 35.
Fun reality: Historians think Henry VIII had written “Greensleeves” for Anne Boleyn, who he had been wanting to woo. Ergo, the techno remix of “Greensleeves” in “Ex-Wives.”
Jane Seymour Queen from 1536–1537Just as Anne Boleyn overtook the girl she served, Jane Seymour was a lady-in-waiting to Queen Anne, after serving Queen Catherine. Henry VIII became betrothed to Jane one time after Anne’s execution. Jane provided delivery to a son, Edward, in October 1537 and passed away a couple of weeks later on of postnatal problems. Jane is usually looked at as the favourite, if it she sings that “without my son your love could disappear. as this woman is the sole spouse Henry freely mourned and also the only 1 to get a queen’s funeral, and that’s why her song in Six is considered the most like an electric ballad—even” Henry VIII ended up being sooner or later hidden beside her at Windsor Castle.
Anne of Cleves Queen from January 1540–July 1540Anne of Cleves lasted only sixth months as Queen, but she kept her mind. Artist Hans Holbein younger visited Germany to paint Anne and her sibling, as Henry VIII considered which may be their 4th spouse. (We find out about these travels in “Haus of Holbein.”)
Nevertheless when Anne arrived after her portrait, Henry felt she “didn’t did look that is n’t her profile image.” She showed a lack that is general of, “sippin’ on mead and I also spill it on my dress,” which additionally displeased the royal. Essentially, the master made excuses for their displeasure her, saying there was no way she was a virgin when they wed with her and found another excuse to be rid of. Issued an annulment, Anne stayed in benefit aided by the King and frequently checked out court throughout the reigns associated with the last two queens. She passed away in 1557.
Catherine Howard Queen from 1540–1541Catherine, better called Kitty, ended up being very very long the item of intimate attention as recommended in “All You Wanna Do.” She ended up being molested by her music instructor, Henry Mannox, as he had been 36 ( perhaps maybe not 23 as Six states) and she 13. At 15, she relocated along with her grandmother, “the dowager Duchess,” and became fans with “sexy secretary” Francis Dereham—an event that will come to haunt her later on. Her grandmother discovered the affair and delivered her towards the Tudor court.
Like her relative, Anne Boleyn, she served as a lady-in-waiting however in the court of Anne of Cleves. The master ended up being 49 years old as he married the 16-year-old. However the gossips at court—some of who had witnessed Dereham—quickly spread word to her behavior that Catherine ended up being committing adultery behind Henry’s straight straight back with Henry’s courtier Thomas Culpeper. Culpepper, Dereham, and Catherine had been all performed (Dereham ended up being drawn and quartered). Catherine, beheaded February 13, 1542, ended up being hidden in a grave that is unmarked.
Catherine Parr Queen from 1543-1547The last spouse of Henry VIII lived in constant anxiety about her very own execution. Prior to her wedding to King Henry VIII, she had two husbands that are previous ended up being widowed both in instances. She had dropped in deep love with Thomas Seymour (Jane’s bro) before she caught the attention associated with the King. As well as in “I Don’t Need Your Love,” she pleads with Thomas to keep her alone to save lots of them both through the King’s wrath and specific death.
Because of the right time she wed Henry, he had been 52 as well as in sick wellness. Catherine ingratiated herself to your master by learning to be a mom to their three kiddies: Catherine of Aragon’s Mary, Anne Boleyn’s Elizabeth, and Jane Seymour’s Edward. This woman is the one who restored Mary and Elizabeth’s royal standing therefore that they might can be found in the type of succession.
During her reign, Catherine ended up being the initial queen of England and Ireland; she has also been the queen most abundant in diplomatic impact since Catherine of Aragon, as she served as regent whenever Henry traveled to France once again. Catherine ended up being an advocate of reformation within the Church, Protestantism. In reality, she published publications on prayer in her own own name—and ended up being the very very first Queen of England to do this. Therefore it’s real that she “fought for feminine education.” Before Henry VIII died January 28, 1547, he instructed that she be respected once the Queen of England even with their death—which is what occurred. She stepped down through the throne whenever Prince Edward, Jane Seymour’s son, ended up being willing to ascend in 1547. This time around, she ended up being the main one to re-marry, to gentleman associated with court Thomas Seymour. She passed away September 5, 1548.