The Wives and Children of King Henry 8th
King Henry the 8th
was born on 28th
June 1491, the 3rd
King Henry 7th
.During his reign he had three children, Mary,
Elizabeth & Edward.
Henry was married six times, his three children were born to his
first three wives. Catherine of Aragon was the mother of Mary 1,
Anne Boleyn the mother of Elizabeth 1 and Jane Seymour the
mother of Edward V1.
Henry reigned for 38 years, on his death in June 1547 he was
succeeded by his son Edward, aged 10 years old and not in good
health. He was King for 6 years until July 1553.
Following Edward’s death, Mary became Queen. Mary being
Henry’s Eldest child was 38 years old and like her brother not in
good health. Mary reigned for 5 years until 1553.
In 1553 Elizabeth was crowned Queen. She became one of Great
Britain’s greatest monarchs, reigning for 45 years.
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Children of Henry 8th
Henry’s eldest daughter Mary, succeeded her brother
Edward to become Queen on his death.
Elizabeth, Henry’s second daughter became Queen on
the death of her sister Mary.
Edward was crowned king on Henry’s death in June
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Wives of Henry 8th
Catherine of Aragon
married six times throughout his reign. His first wife
was Catherine of Aragon(1509-1533). Catherine was
married to Henry’s elder brother Arthur. When he died,
Henry married her and made her his Queen. Henry and
Catherine had six children, Mary being the only one to
survive beyond childhood.
Henry needed a male heir to continue the Tudor line and when
this didn’t happen, he divorced Catherine in 1533. Her reign as
Queen lasted 24 years.
Henry’s second wife was Anne Boleyn(1533-1536).
Together they had two children, Elizabeth and a son
(unnamed) who died at birth.
Anne was not a popular Queen with Henry’s subjects, and
was under pressure to provide a male heir, when her son died
Henry started to look for ways to find a new wife to give him a
Anne’s reign came to an end in 1536 when she was beheaded.
Anne’s reign lasted 3 years.
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Jane Seymour(1536-1537) became Henry’s 3rd
weeks after the death of Anne Boleyn. Jane provided the
male heir that Henry longed for. Edward was born in
1536, this birth was to cause the death of his mother.
Anne of Cleaves
Three years after the death of Jane Seymour, Henry was
talked into marriage for the fourth time.
Anne of Cleves(1540-1540), was a foreign princess who did
not meet Henry’s expectations. As quickly as he married he
arranged a divorce. Anne was replaced as Queen after less than 1
Catherine Howard (1540-1542) became Henry’s 5th Queen.
Being much younger than Henry, Catherine was expected to
produce a son quickly. When this didn’t happen, Henry
conspired to find a way out of the marriage. Treason charges
were brought against Catherine, she was found guilty and
beheaded in 1542. Her reign lasted two years.
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Henry was now aging, and looked for a wife who would be
more a companion rather than someone who would provide
him with any more children.
Catherine Parr (1543-1547) became his sixth and last wife.
Catherine was Henry’s Queen until his death in 1547.
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This family tree shows the wives and children of Henry V111. Their dates of birth and death are
shown as well as the length of their reign.
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Catherine of Aragon
Anne of Cleves
This Graph Shows The Length Of each Reign for Henry, His Queens And
6 5 4 3 2 1 1
Kings and Queens
Catherine of Aragon
Anne of Cleves
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This chart shows the number of years each spent as King or Queen.
38years 24 years 3 years 1 year 1 year 2 years 4 years 6 years 5 years 45 years
During Henry’s 38 years on the throne, his six wives had a total of 35 years as Queen. All reigns
were of different lengths and could be used to work out the average time that one wife and each
child was on the throne.
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After Henry’s death, the son that he longed for was only King for
6 years. On Edward’s death his sister Mary became Queen,
reigning for 5years. Elizabeth then became Queen, with her reign
lasting 45 years, since which time history has pronounced her one
of the most successful monarchs of all time.
The Tudor legacy was not as Henry envisaged. A female Tudor
was to be remembered above all others and Elizabeth’s reign was
to cover some of the most important aspects in British History.
Henry changed English law to please himself during his reign,
which enabled him to divorce, marry and legally murder his wives.
During his reign, Henry also changed the county’s religion from
Catholic to Protestant, breaking away from the church in Rome to
allow him to annul two of his marriages.
The Tudor reigns of Henry and his children are an important part
of our history, as many changes were made to laws and religion at
this time. They were also turbulent times.
Under Henry, Edward and Elizabeth the country was of the
Protestant faith. Mary was brought up in the Catholic faith
following her mother, and when crowned Queen she changed the
country’s main religion to Catholicism.
This period in the country’s history continues to fascinate many
people, with books, artwork, and buildings continuing to attract
visitors to our historical sites, galleries and churches.
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Lara E. Eakins/photos of paintings/Tudorhistory.org
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