The Six Wives of King Henry VIII

Divorced, beheaded, died, divorced, beheaded, survived.

You are probably familiar with this phrase which has been learnt by school children for many years to help them to remember what happened to Henry VIII’s six wives. It’s a bit inaccurate, however, because Henry didn’t divorce Catherine of Aragon and Anne of Cleves, he had his marriages to them annulled (which means that, in the eyes of the law, the marriage never took place at all).

Here are the six wives of Henry VIII.

Click on their names to learn more about them (coming soon).

Catherine of Aragon (marriage annulled)

Anne Boleyn (executed)

Jane Seymour (died tweleve days after giving birth to Henry’s heir, Edward)

Anne of Cleves (marriage annulled)

Catherine Howard (executed)

Catherine Parr (widowed)

Henry was a distant relative of all six of his wives. They were all ancestors of the English King, Edward I.

Here is a rhyme about Henry’s wives:

King Henry the Eighth,

To six wives he was wedded.

One died, one survived,

Two divorced, two beheaded.


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