My Letter to the People

 

I, King Henry VIII, am very displeased to hear that there are many misconceptions about the type of person that I am, so I am writing to clarify some of the falsehoods established about my person.  Some people throughout history have viewed me as being a fat tyrant, but I want to publicly announce that in my yester years I was admired for my intelligence, good looks, and athletic abilities.  I would like to write about my wives for a moment to clear up any misunderstandings about my marriages.  Yes I said wives, as in a plural tense, because I had six of them.

            It may come to a surprise that I was married to my first wife, Catherine of Aragon, for over twenty years.  Aside from the fact that she was my brother, Arthur’s, widow, I must say that we were happy together because the entire time we were together I had only two mistresses.  One of my mistresses was actually a lady – in – waiting to my Queen, Catherine of Aragon, named Elizabeth Blount.  At first, I slightly panicked for fear that this would bring domestic turmoil on top of the war affairs I was having , but being a person who knows how to make the best of any situation, I prevailed. For those of you who doubt my ability to produce a son, think again.  I am delighted about the fact that I am the father of a royal bastard, but I am not delighted that I still had not had a legitimate son of my own. 

My second wife, boy was she amazing.  I first met her when I was married to Catherine still, but technically Catherine and I weren’t even married since she was my brother’s wife.  So instead of continuing to live in sin, I established the Church of England and had Catherine banished from court in order to marry Anne Boleyn because I want to maintain my positive image and not one that is tainted because of a sinful marriage.  Before me and Anne were married, I used to give her many offers of being my sole and unique mistress, which she was slightly offended by, but for what reason was unknown.  Indeed, this continually declination only made the passion I had for her stronger until the day I decided to make her my wife.  As Anne got older, she began to slightly get on my nerves.  She became very aggravating and trained her mouth to become smart, so I was slowly but surely falling out of  love with this woman.  This is the one and only reason why I turned my attention towards on her maids of honor.  At first, she denied my attempts to make her my mistress, in which, like Anne, made me desire her more.  The marriage was decent until she died, leaving me without a son. 

This leads to my third wife, her name was…oh yes, it was Jane, the one who bore my first son, Prince Edward, and was my last wife’s maid of honor.  After Jane died, I decided that since I obviously could not keep a woman that I fell in love with, I decided to go to the other end of the spectrum and find a woman who would help me further myself politically. 

The first person who came to my mind was Anne of Cleves.  I had never seen her before, yet her portrait presented her as being pretty with grace and poise.  ( I should have known she was not because my portraits show me as how I looked in my younger days, perhaps it were the same for her.)  When I met her, she was not pleasing to the eye, so I figured our marriage wouldn’t last long.  She eventually discovered that I was not interested in her and agreed to have our marriage annulled, so I figured that I would reward her for her kindness by giving her money and property.  What a relief, I thought I would have to make arrangements to have her beheaded for some outrageous reason

Then there was Katherine Howard, who was related to Anne Boleyn.  I figured since blood is thicker than water, why not keep in the family.  Yet, like her cousin, she was a devout adulterer.  Last, but not least was Katherine Parr.  Since I was in my older years, she took advantage of me.  Yes, she was good to my children, but she was not good to me.  On several occasions she would argue with me about religion and I would have her arrested, but me being the kind hearted and compassionate man that I am, I cancelled the arrest warrants. 

Now lets briefly, and I do mean briefly, discuss the political misconceptions people have about me.  Yes, it is true that during my time of reign I brought about many dangerous differences between the Roman Catholics and the Protestants.  To my defense, these changes needed to take place in order to force a change between the relationship of Church and State.  I made sure that my son, Edward, was well educated by Protestants rather than Catholics, in order to further establish and secure my dynasty.

I wanted to make these clarifications of my life to establish a sense of respect from the people who know about me. Some people may view me as a man who is deceptive, but I am merely a man who sees the cup as being half full, so I tend to look at the positive side of situations in order to find a way to make it better.   I am not a bad man, but simply a man who knows what he wants and knows how to get it at all costs.  To whoever may read this, thank you for the opportunity to let me make known and justify the decisions I have made in life.

Sincerely,

 

King Henry VIII

Sources

http://www.royal.gov.uk/output/Page19.asp

http://www.sho.com/site/tudors/previous_episodes.do?episodeid=127659

http://www.royalty.nu/Europe/England/Tudor/HenryVIII.html

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