Six Wives of Henry VIII
Catherine of Aragon
Spanish: Catalina de AragÃ³n y Castilla,
16 December 1485 â€“ 7 January 1536,
also known as Katherine or Katharine was Princess of Wales as the wife of Arthur, Prince of Wales, and Queen of England as the first wife of King Henry VIII of England. She was also for 6 months Queen Regent of England while Henry VIII fought a war in France. During that time the English won the Battle of Flodden, an event Catherine played an important part in. The controversial book "The Education of Christian Women" by Juan Luis Vives, which claimed women have the right to an education, was dedicated to and commissioned by her.
Henry VIII's attempt to have their 24-year marriage annulled set in motion a chain of events that led to England's break with the Church of Rome. Henry was dissatisfied because their sons had died in infancy and others were stillborn, leaving their daughter, the future Mary I of England, as heiress presumptive, at a time when there was no established precedent for a woman on the throne, although there was no Salic law in England. When Pope Clement VII refused to annul the marriage, Henry defied him by assuming supremacy over religious matters. This allowed him to marry Anne Boleyn on the judgment of clergy in England, without reference to the Pope. He was motivated by the hope of fathering a male heir to the Tudor dynasty. Catherine refused to accept Henry as Supreme Head of the Church of England and considered herself, as did most of England and Europe, the King's rightful wife and Queen until her death.