Age Rating: 1 +
I never thought twice about queens and kings until I read about Catherine Parr. Her life was short, but sweet. Well, not all of it.
She was married twice, and was a widow twice. It was her second husband Lord Latimer, who was a constant court attendee, and without realizing it, had Catherine observed by King Henry VIII.
When her husband died, she had arranged to marry a man by the name of Thomas Seymour, but the king also offered a marriage proposal. One does not reject the king.
On July 12, 1543, she was married to King Henry VIII. She was thirty-one. She was his sixth wife, and final. She has a special place in history, as the queen who married the most.
Catherine was determined to make this marriage work, so she befriended King Henry VIII's children from previous marriages. Part of the queen’s duties was to comfort the king in times of pain. King Henry VIII had been an athletic and handsome man in his youth. By the time he married Catherine, he was very overweight and suffering from multiple health problems, including an ulcerated leg. Sometimes, the fifty-two-year-old king couldn’t walk. Things were going well. She even managed to calm the anger between King Henry VIII and his two daughters, Mary and Elizabeth. One of the ways she distracted him, was speaking of religious matters, and entertaining him.
But Catherine was not a pushover, especially when it came to Religion. The bishop of Winchester, Stephen Gardiner, wasn’t happy about Catherine’s presence in the courts, or her religious beliefs. (She was accused of being Protestant. I believe they were all Catholic) Gardiner was also sore from not being chosen to be Archbishop of Canterbury. The man who got the position was a Protestant sympathizer. This must of fed his fuel to go after Catherine.
Gardiner tries to get dirt on Catherine, by speaking to a woman named Anne Askew who was arrested for heresy. (I think that’s when you speak against something, such as religion) She was tortured to speak, and was almost snapped in two, but didn’t reveal anything on Catherine.
Despite what he attempted on Anne Askew, he went to the king and told him that Catherine was a heretic, and given time, he could prove this. King Henry VIII was angered by this, and signed a bill against his wife.
While all this is going on, Catherine doesn’t have a clue, until her doctor fills her in. He advises her to speak to the King and ask for forgiveness. So, she decides to do just that. She finds Henry in a good mood. However, Henry soon turns the conversation to religious matters, trying to trap Catherine into saying something that will prove her guilty. She spots the trap. She tells him that she can teach him nothing. She also says that her earlier conversations on religion were designed only to distract him from the pain caused by his health problems. The king saw the logic, and dropped the bill against his wife.
The next day King Henry VIII takes a walk around the Royal Garden accompanied by Catherine. This was the pre-planned time for Catherine’s arrest. While Catherine and the king are enjoying themselves, Sir Thomas Wriothesley, an accomplice of Gardiner, arrives with a forty-man guard to arrest Catherine. The tables have turned, however, and the King sends Wriothseley packing, calling him a fool and beast.
In 1550, Gardiner he was deprived of his bishopric, and spent time in the Tower of London.
King Henry VIII died in 1547. Catherine then married Thomas Seymour. She died in 1548 at the tender age of thirty-six giving birth to her child, Mary. Mary didn’t outlive her mother by much. But, in some sources, it says Mary was taken into the household of the Duchess of Somerset, where it says she died at the age of two.