Anne of Cleves: Henry VIII's Discarded Bride

Anne of Cleves: Henry VIII's Discarded Bride

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By (author) Elizabeth Norton

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  • Publisher: Amberley Publishing
  • Format: Paperback | 224 pages
  • Dimensions: 126mm x 194mm x 18mm | 259g
  • Publication date: 1 December 2010
  • Publication City/Country: Stroud
  • ISBN 10: 1445601834
  • ISBN 13: 9781445601830
  • Illustrations note: 27 black & white illustrations, 27 colour illustrations
  • Sales rank: 141,496

Product description

The first major biography of Henry VIII least favourite wife - but the one who outlived them all. 'I like her not!' was the verdict of Henry VIII on meeting his fourth wife, Anne of Cleves, for the first time. Anne could have said something similar on meeting Henry and, having been promised the most handsome prince in Europe, she was destined to be disappointed in the elderly and corpulent king. Henry also felt that Anne was not as she had been described, complaining that he had been sent a Flander's mare. Forced to proceed with their wedding for diplomatic reasons, Henry and Anne tried to make the best of the situation, but attempts to consummate the match were farcical. Henry could not bring himself to touch his new bride and Anne, entirely ignorant of such matters, did not even notice that there was a problem. After only seven months of marriage Henry was so desperate to rid himself of Anne that he declared himself impotent in order to secure a divorce. Anne was also eager to end her marriage and, with her clever handling of Henry obtained one of the biggest divorce settlements in English history. Following her divorce, Anne made good use of her many properties, including Richmond Palace, Hever Castle and the house at Lewes now known as 'Anne of Cleves' House'. Anne of Cleves is often portrayed as a stupid and comical figure. The real Anne was both intelligent and practical, ensuring that, whilst she was queen for the shortest period, she was the last of all Henry VIII's wives to survive. Henry's chief minister, Thomas Cromwell lost his head for his role in the Cleves marriage, but Anne's shrewdness ensured she kept hers. Even after Henry's death, Anne managed to work to her own advancement, attempting to annul her divorce in order to ensure her financial security as a dowager queen. Anne of Cleves led a dramatic and often dangerous life but, for all this, of Henry VIII's six wives, she is truly the wife that survived.

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Author information

Elizabeth Norton gained her first degree from the University of Cambridge, and her Masters from the University of Oxford. Her other books include CATHERINE PARR ('Scintillating' THE FINANCIAL TIMES'; 'Cuts an admirably clear path through tangled Tudor intrigues' JENNY UGLOW; 'Wonderful - a joy to read' HERSTORIA), ANNE BOLEYN: HENRY VIII'S OBSESSION ('Meticulously researched and a great read' THEANNEBOLEYNFILES.COM), JANE SEYMOUR: HENRY VIII'S TRUE LOVE, MARGARET BEAUFORT: MOTHER OF THE TUDOR DYNASTY, ENGLAND'S QUEENS: THE BIOGRAPHY (all published by Amberley Publishing) and SHE WOLVES: THE NOTORIOUS QUEENS OF ENGLAND. She is currently writing the first ever biography of Elizabeth Blount, Henry VIII's first mistress, also for Amberley Publishing. She lives in Kingston Upon Thames.

Table of contents

Chapter 1: Anna, the Daughter of Cleves: 1515-1537 Chapter 2: The Search for a Bride: 1537-1538 Chapter 3: Marriage Negotiations: 1538-1539 Chapter 4: Queen in Waiting: Winter 1539 Chapter 5: I Like Her Not: New Year 1540 Chapter 6: A Flander's Mare: January 1540 Chapter 7: Marriage: January 1540 Chapter 8: Queen Anne: January - July 1540 Chapter 9: Divorce: July 1540 Chapter 10: The Fall of Cromwell: Summer 1540 Chapter 11: Queen Catherine Howard: July 1540-February 1542 Chapter 12: The King's Sister: 1542-1547 Chapter 13: Lady Anne of Cleves: 1547-1553 Chapter 14: Survivor: 1553-1557 Epilogue: The Last Queen of King Henry VIII Bibliography Acknowledgements List of Illustrations Index