Fame in Spain: Catherine of Aragon

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We’ve all heard of King Henry VIII and his 6 wives. We’ve heard of the romance, the scandal, the death and the horror that followed almost all of his marriages. We’ve also heard about his most famous accomplishment, his daughter, Queen Elizabeth I who ruled over England and Ireland for over 40 years. But did you know that Henry´s first wive, Queen Catherine of Aragon, the mother of Bloody Mary herself, was Spanish?

Catherine_aragonSpain and England were once the strongest super powers in the known world, competing for fame, glory and power for years and years. The countries fought endlessly over land and religion, often dragging France into conflict as they all flip flopped from one side to the other. The one decision that was made to keep the peace – which ironically ended in utter disaster – was the marriage between the young King Henry VIII and the Princess Catherine of Aragon (of Spain) in 1509. This marriage was to unite the nations and also create a sort of religious stability. Catherine was born in 1485 in Aragon, Spain. She was the daughter of King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Castilla and her marriage to Henry made both countries extremely powerful. As the story goes, Henry got bored of his marriage with Catherine and broke with the Catholic Church to divorced her and marry Anne Boleyn. Years later in 1516, Catherine’s daughter Mary became queen of England and went on to become of the most hated monarchs in history. Earning the name Bloody Mary for the tremendous amount of men and women she had burned at the stake.


Your friendly neighbourhood travel guide,

– Leah



Hi all, my name is Joachim and I am one of the founder of Citylife Madrid. It's my pleasure to help you guys get oriented in Madrid. I moved here in 2010 for one year, fell in love with the city and never left since then. When it comes to blogging I mainly write about topics related to getting settled in Madrid, from banking, transportation and how to find the perfect place to live to legal topics like how to get your NIE/TIE & Empadronamiento. I am also organizing the Madrid Student Welcome Day every year together with the city council of Madrid. Don't hesitate to get in touch with me via whatsapp under +34622565583, happy to help whereever I can. Saludos and see you around in this beautiful city!

1 Comment. Leave new

  • Gail Ruckel
    12/10/2019 11:48

    This short article does not do this woman justice. She was originally married to Henry’s brother who died shortly after the ceremony. She was passed to Henry and they were married for 13 years (?). She had a number of pregnancies which failed and she could not produce a male heir. If she had , she probably could have remained.


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