Mary Tudor, Charles Brandon & a Match Made in (Dramatic) Heaven

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There was one thing that Henry VIII and his siblings had in common: marrying whoever they wanted. Certainly we know how Henry went about this, but less known is the extent to which his sisters did. After James IV of Scotland died in 1513, Margaret went on to marry twice by her own choice. Today, however, we’re going to take a look at their younger sister, Princess Mary, who did her duty by the king of France and then went the Tudor way.

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When Henry VIII Loved Anne Boleyn

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Back in May we covered Anne Boleyn’s trial and execution, so it seems only right we cover happier times in her life, or at least the rise that made her so famous. Today we’re going to address the question of when she first caught Henry VIII’s eye and what exactly those early months and years looked like. With the benefit of hindsight we so quickly jump from Anne arriving at Henry’s court to the political battles of the divorce, but there was a lull in-between that helped dictate where the ugly mess ended up. The “when” is important, too, because it speaks to what everyone’s motivation was – Anne’s, Henry’s and the councilors at the center of court.

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The Middle Child: Helena, Princess of Schleswig-Holstein

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Some of Queen Victoria’s children are burned into history books via their dynastic importance. Others are referenced as mere links between Britain and the continent, becoming the parents of later European rulers who were key to World War I. The middle of these nine children, Princess Helena, was not one such person. To me, she stands out as the child who looks the most like her mother.

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Charles & William at the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo

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On Wednesday, the Prince of Wales and the Duke of Cambridge attended the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo – or, rather, the Duke of Rothesay and the Earl of Strathearn as the two men are known in Scotland. While normally this isn’t an engagement I would write up on its own, I do like to cover off when we get more than one senior royal for a notable event and, well, it’s August – it’s going to be a slow crawl when it comes to royal news.

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Is There a Regency Plan in Place?

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In the past two weeks the Duke of Edinburgh retired and a slew of new documentaries and TV specials on the late Princess of Wales debuted. These two seemingly parallel events have created a perfect storm of an intersection that lands smack dab on the head of the Prince of Wales – or rather, his place in the succession. Stepping away from the personalities at play here and it begs the question, how can a man who has been first in line for the throne since 1952 truly have his viability undermined?

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Katherine of York, Countess of Devon & the Courtenays

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Remarkably given their dynastic importance, the chaos with which they were surrounded and their potential for mischief, the daughters of Edward IV and Elizabeth Woodville were a quiet lot. Much like the eldest, Elizabeth of York, there are only flashes of agency against an overarching pattern of obedience for the younger daughters.

While we know that Elizabeth became the queen consort of Henry VII and the third sister, Anne of York, married Thomas Howard, future 3rd Duke of Norfolk, today we’re going to focus on the second-to-youngest daughter, Katherine, whose life followed a very interesting Medieval pattern.

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The Example of Adelaide of Saxe-Meiningen

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If there was ever a woman you could forget was queen of the United Kingdom, meet Adelaide of Saxe-Meiningen. Wife of William IV and queen consort for a mere seven years, it’s easy to overlook her role in the British Royal Family if for no other reason than it’s easy to forget her husband’s reign. Even so, Adelaide was an inherently decent woman and if the House of Hanover had had the good fortune to be blessed with more of her ilk, there would have been by far less scandal in the 18th and 19th centuries.

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Royal Roundup: Henrik, Earl Spencer & the Succession

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Well, that’s a weird title, but I think it hits the highlights. Where to begin with the last few days? Let’s start outside the UK where the Danish Royal Family has been dominating headlines. Denmark’s  monarch, Queen Margrethe II has reigned for 45 years, is enormously popular and is supported by her two sons and plethora of grandchildren. That support does not, apparently, extend to her husband, Prince Henrik, a Frenchman to whom she has been married since 1967.

Henrik boldly stated that he had no desire to be buried alongside his wife at Roskilde, the traditional resting place for Danish monarchs and their spouses, because he had never been granted the title of “king.” His argument is that his prevention from receiving the title is 1) his wife’s fault and 2) sexist, because female consorts are given the title “queen.”

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