CATHERINE OF ARAGON: An Intimate Life


CATHERINE OF ARAGON: An Intimate Life

AMY LICENCE    Book Number: 88006    Product format: Paperback

Catherine of Aragon believed to the end of her life that she was a Henry VIII's true and lawful wife, inheriting a fighting spirit from her formidable mother Isabella of Castile. Catherine arrived in England in 1501 to marry Henry's brother Arthur, the heir to the English throne, accompanied by unprecedented pomp and ceremony and a huge dowry, but Arthur's death shortly after the marriage made Henry the heir. Henry's eventual marriage to Catherine was arranged to avoid the return of her dowry. When Catherine failed to give him the son and heir he so desperately wanted, Henry's attention was captured by Anne Boleyn and he began to think of annulling the marriage to Catherine. The point at issue in the 1529 court hearing was whether the marriage to Arthur had ever been consummated: if it had, then it could be argued that Henry had sinned against the Church's laws in marrying his brother's widow. The author shows that while 15-year-old Arthur emerged from the wedding night making boasts of his conquest, Catherine had been more hesitant, and Licence suggests that there could have been a genuine difference of opinion as to whether penetration had taken place. Cardinal Campeggio, representing the pope, refused to countenance the possibility of annulment, and Henry's representative at the hearing, Cardinal Wolsey, emerged with his reputation diminished to such an extent that he never recovered. Finally the archbishop of Canterbury, Thomas Cranmer, dissolved the marriage as Henry took the first steps to separate the English church from Rome. The Imperial ambassador Chapuys, Catherine's constant champion, was one of the last to see her before her death in 1536, the same day that Anne Boleyn had a miscarriage. A fascinatingly detailed study. 534pp, paperback.
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ISBN 9781445656786
Browse these categories as well: Historical Biography, History

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