Courtesy of Biography

"I came not into this realm as merchandise, nor yet to be married to any merchant."

183: Catherine of Aragon

Spanish Born Queen of England and the First Wife of Henry VIII

Born: 16 December 1485, Madrid, Spain

Died: 7 January 1536, Kimbolton, England (Today in the United Kingdom)

Alternate Spelling: Katherine of Aragon

She was the youngest child of the famed Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain (the couple that funded Christopher Columbus’s voyage to the New World, yes).

Catherine was originally married to Henry’s older brother and the heir—Arthur; however, Arthur died a year later, and she was remarried to Henry once he assumed the throne in 1509.

The first years of the marriage were happy—with Catherine matching Henry’s intellectual prowess and even serving as regent for two years while Henry was campaigning against the French.

She gave birth to six children in eight years, unfortunately all but Mary—the future Mary I--were either stillborn or died soon after birth. Because of this and Henry’s wants for a legitimate male heir (and the desire to get under Anne Boleyn’s skirts) Henry divorced Catherine on the grounds their marriage was incestuous because she had slept with Arthur—her first husband (not true but what did Henry care about the truth?).

Despite being beloved by the English People Henry forced Catherine to live out her final years in isolation and never allowed her to see her daughter Mary again.

Badges Earned:

Find a Grave Marked

Located In My Personal Library:

Blood Sisters: The Women Behind the Wars of the Roses by Sarah Gristwood

The Creation of Anne Boleyn: A New Look at England's Most Notorious Queen by Susan Bordo

History’s Naughty Bits by Karen Dolby

Isabella: The Warrior Queen by Kirstin Downey

One Bloody Thing After Another by Jacob F Field

Powers & Thrones: A New History of the Middle Ages by Dan Jones

The Wives of Henry VIII by Antonia Fraser

The Other Tudors by Philippa Jones

The Warrior Queens by Antonia Fraser

The Children of Henry VIII by Alison Wier

Kings & Queens of England and Scotland by Plantagenet Somerset Fry

Uppity Women Speak Their Minds by Vicki Leon

Sex With the Queen: 900 Years of Vile Kings, Virile Lovers, and Passionate Politics by Eleanor Herman

The Wars of the Roses: The Fall of the Plantagenets and the Rise of the Tudors by Dan Jones