Sometimes the difficult part about running this blog, apart from the obvious factors that I cannot be as active as I would sometimes like yet I still thank my loyal followers for their patience. Anywhom, one of the most difficult part about the blog is that I often find many things in English history when I do my “Today in history”s yet the question is, does it relate to the Tudor period or Henry at all? I’ve come to the conclusion recently that I will widen my scope to include not only Henry VIII, but the Tudor house (his father, his brother, his children…etc) but his ancestry also. It will still of-course revolve around Henry but let’s shine some light on the periods leading to Tudor supremacy that not many know about, shall we?
On this day in 1422, King Henry V of England dies in France thus leaving his son Henry VI to the throne at the ripe age of…9 months. King Henry V, most popularly known for his battle of Agincourt and claiming of France to the English throne, was a huge influence in the early childhood of Henry VIII whose tales of glory and battle had a heavy impact on his mind. Henry VIII would go onto a French campaign in the beginning and end of his reign that looked oddly resembling Henry V’s glory.
Regardless, King Henry V’s death came with odd timing. He sailed back to France for his last military campaign with all but the French crown tucked under his arm, intending to sail back to England as not only the English King but French King. Things were looking great for the almost 36 year old. Still, he died suddenly, apparently from dysentery and his only son with his wife Catherine of Valois, was named King of England. Henry VI would go on to be named King of France 2 months later when his grandfather, Charles VI of France died.
Why does the Tudor house relate to this seemingly small event? Simple. After the death of her husband, Catherine of Valois went onto an amorous relationship with Owen ap Maredudd ap Tudor of Wales. She could not marry without permission of her son’s regency council who was weary of her and how she would raise her son, thus it would be treason for her to marry but clearly she was looking for a piece of normalcy in this match. Owen was a Welsh soldier and courtier, descended from a daughter of a Welsh Prince. During the French campaign, he was Seward to King Henry. Catherine of Valois and Owen Tudor were thought to have married though a parliament act not long after named the marriage invalid under the grounds of a new bill that stated that no dowager Queen could marry without the King’s permission. Since her son was so young, the regency council would need to give her permission which they would never do thus she took things into her own hands.
They went onto have 6 children. After Catherine’s death, Owen was involved with the War of the Roses though was an early casualty when he was captured at Mortimer’s Cross while leading Henry VI’s forces against the future King Edward IV. He was executed but not in vain for his son, Edmund Tudor would go onto marry a decedent of Edward III, Margaret Beaufort. From forth Margaret Beaufort and Edmund Tudor would come Henry Tudor. Sound familiar?