I’m No King Henry VIII; For Better Or For Much Worse
Marriage is a beautiful union between two people who think they can stand being around each other for the rest of their lives. Many people get wed. Some do it twice it’s that good. Any more than that and you’re just being greedy. Granted, life expectancy during the 20th Century increased rapidly, so now it’s easy to cram a couple of marriages in there. But back in the Middle ages, you were lucky if you hit your 30th birthday. So it’s impressive that King Henry VIII had 6 wives in 55 years. His claim to fame is being a polyamorous fuckhead that it coined this famous rhyme. “King Henry VIII, to six wives he was wedded. One died, one survived, two divorced, two beheaded.”
The first victim was once divorced from Henry’s brother, Catherine Of Aragon. I mean, already this is off to a bad start. You don’t date your brother’s ex, even if he is dead. Have some respect. But the King doesn’t have any as he was having coitus all over the place, while poor Catherine had years of multiple miscarriages and stillborn births. You’d think the disrespect he displays to his wife would be a sign of what kind of man he is to the next wife, who happened to be one of the women he was having an affair with, Anne Boleyn, whom he met while having intercourse with Anne’s sister, Mary. There is evidence of their affair in love letters where Henry compares Anne’s breasts to “pretty duckies”. (I’m never going to look at ducks the same way). This first marriage is like a real life Game of Thrones but without dragons, and instead of handsome Jon Snow you have an obese flatulent King. And we’ve still got five more to go.
Henry somehow persuaded the church to annul the marriage after 21 years on grounds that she was previously married to his brother. This process took so long that he also divorced himself from the Roman Catholic Church and created a new one; Church Of England. The balls on this guy is actually amazing.
His marriage to Anne was validated even though they wed while he was still married. That only lasted a couple of years, because Anne just couldn’t bothered to make Henry a son…. She made him a a daughter, sure, but what’s the point of a girl in medieval times. Am i right? (I’m not. I’m not right. The King is a monster!) He grew tired of her and with added rumors of her indulging in incest and witchcraft, he had her beheaded. A simple divorce may have sufficed, but so far, Henry was not a divorcee and he wasn’t about to start now. Murderer, fine, but Ross from friends? No!
About 10 days after Anne’s execution, he married Jane Seymour. If you think about it, 10 days is a long time to get over the killing of someone you claimed to love. And how did he meet Jane? Oh, just the standard; he woke up one day and the first women he saw was the one. And as she served Catherine of Aragon and was Anne’s lady-in-waiting, he was bound to bump into her. Imagine the mess he would’ve made if the King had Tinder?
But third time’s the charm, for it was reported he regarded Jane as his most beloved wife. Maybe because there wasn’t enough time to hate her. They were married 1 year, 4 months, 24 days before she died. Henry’s life was like a Medieval version of The Bachelor and the winner was Jane Seymour who had the privilege of being buried next to him when he died.
But not before he could sneak in three more marriages. That’s the thing, when you truly love someone and death rips them from you, you only have it in you to marry three more times.
Swipe left. Anne of Cleves. Annulled after only 6 months because she was supposed to marry some other dude. She didn’t put up a fight so as a reward, Henry gave her a castle which once belonged to his second wife’s parents. This was Henry’s best marriage.
The Rose Without A Thorn Catherine Howard was up next. 1 year and 3 months married to him. Not bad. Good score. But alas, she supposedly cheated on him and that’s just not OK in Henry’s book, which i think is The Game. He beheaded her. Much easier than couple’s therapy.
And to get over Catherine’s alleged adultery, he married another Catherine. Maybe so it doesn’t get too confusing in bed. The fear of shouting someone else’s name in the boudoir is one we must all live with, so if you learn anything from Henry, it’s this; chose partners with the same name, so then it’s one less thing to worry about.
And if I learned anything, it’s that, sometimes I am a real pain in my wife’s ass. I mean, I‘m really very annoying. But at least, i’m no Henry VIII. And hopefully you aren’t with one either. If you think your relationship is difficult, and it may be, just reflect back on that Medieval shit show and think whether your relationship is worth fighting for. If it is, talk to each other. No beheading!
Written for LoveTV.co