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The Six Wives of Henry VIII
Catherine of Aragon Anne Boleyn Jane Seymour Anne of Cleves Catherine Howard Catherine Parr
Meet the Wives Find a Wife Portrait of a King Tudor Times
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Why choose this wife?

Eleanor of Austria
Catherine of Aragon's chief rival for Prince Henry of Wales was her six-year-old niece, Eleanor of Austria. In Europe's grand marriage stakes, Eleanor clearly outweighed Catherine. Her father, Archduke Philip the Handsome, was heir to the Hapsburg dynasty's vast holdings in Europe and a key candidate to become Holy Roman Emperor. Eleanor's mother Juana was the ruler of Castile, Spain's most


influential territorial holding, and in line to inherit Aragon. As the political stock of Catherine's father dipped, Eleanor's attractions grew. (And so did those of her mother, once widowed, as a bride for Henry VII.) For several months in 1508, Henry VII negotiated with Holy Roman Emperor Maxmilian for the marriage of 17-year-old Prince Henry to nine-year-old Eleanor. The king's death in 1509 brought an end to the talks and, instead, Eleanor would later marry one of Henry VIII's great rivals, Francis I of France.

Marguerite d'Angoulême
Prospects for Prince Henry in this direction never progressed very far, but Marguerite presented an alluring prospect. Her brother, Francis, was in line to inherit the throne of France if King Louis XII died without a son. But, in the end, Marguerite would marry elsewhere ­ to Charles, duc d'Alençon in 1509, and Henri d'Albret, king of Navarre, in 1527. Highly educated, she would go on to write several comedies and a wide range of poetry.

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Intro Background Why choose this wife? Role as queen King vs. queen Love Life Children Ultimate fate