The First Wives Club: Catherine of Aragon

What a life for Catherine of Aragon. Her parents were the proselytizing financiers of Christopher Columbus. She was married off to the Prince of Wales at age 16, and upon the death of her 15-year-old husband, she was passed along to wed his younger brother Henry who would prove to be the biggest wife-swapper in English royal history.

But before we get ahead of ourselves, why don’t we go straight to the source? Here’s a little Q&A with the Queen Consort herself (We’re not permitted to reveal how we got an interview as some necromancers we know could get into very big trouble…):

Beauty of Stripes Gown:

beauty of stripe gown

My name is Catherine of Aragon, but you can call me “gato” (It’s Spanish for “Cat”! Get it?). My parents were King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella, famous for the many explorers they sent out to discover new lands. If only I’d hopped on the Santa Maria with Chris Columbus! I could have been tanning on a beach in the Caribbean instead of the mess of a marriage I ended up in. I was only 16 when I married Arthur, the Prince of Wales. He passed away 5 months later, and I was compelled to marry his younger brother who would become King Henry VIII. All so my homeland could be best buddies with England!

In the early years, Henry professed his love for me through songs, letters, inscriptions, and even public declarations – oh, he knew how to make a lady blush! But years later, I was still having trouble conceiving a healthy child, and Henry was demanding a son to be heir to the throne. I gave birth to a daughter, sweet little Mary, but that wasn’t enough for him.

Before long, Henry was sneaking around, trying to lure that Anne Boleyn into an empty bedroom. And she was supposed to be my lady-in-waiting! Henry tried to have our marriage annulled, but the Pope refused him the separation. Then what does Henry go and do? He overrides the Pope’s authority, making himself the head of the whole Church of England! As if he was morally fit for that job… Henry’s clerical stooges approved our annulment, and I was cast out of my own home, redubbed the “Dowager Princess of Wales” by my once doting husband.

The day I accept Henry as the Supreme Head of the Church will be the day pigs fly! And the day that I accept that Anne as Queen will be the day pigs zoom through the sky laying eggs that turn into shooting stars as they fall! Annulment or what have you, I will always be Henry’s wife and the rightful Queen of England. In my last letter to Henry, I offered him my forgiveness, as my Catholic conscience bade me, and admit that I do wish he still loved me as I have faithfully loved him…

Lady of Leeds Gown

Lady of Leeds Gown

To get the garbs of this ill-treated Queen, check out our selection of regal gowns and chemises: http://www.historicalclothingrealm.com/women-s-clothing-dresses-and-gowns.html

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