“Lágrimas Negras: La Plegaria de Mary Tudor, Reina de Inglaterra”, por Mercy Rivera

February 18, 2017 in Hall of Crowns (Mercy Rivera), Historical Fiction, Queens of World History, Spanish Language Diary Entries by Mercy Rivera

por Mercy Rivera

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Reina Maria Tudor

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Video producido por Mercy Rivera (piratesse4)

 Mercy no posee nada del contenido.

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Fui una vez la perla de este reino, la luz de los ojos del Rey mi padre, y la vida entera de la reina, mi madre. Heredera de sangre noble, de casta fuerte, con ancestros de linaje impecable, y legado precioso, mas aún, a pesar de todo eso, no soy amada por mi reino, ni por mi marido ni por los que me rodean. Yo, la nieta de Isabel y Fernando de Castilla, hija de la noble Catalina de Aragón, hija del león, Enrique VIII, estoy reducida a menos que nada, con una corona que me pesa, que me duele, que me da un inmenso poder pero al mismo tiempo me condena a una soledad extrema. ¿De que me sirve cargarla en mi cabeza si no me puede dar el amor de mi súbditos y de mi rey, de que me sirve si no me puede dar herederos, de que me sirve si solo inspira el miedo de los que pasan por delante de mi? ¿Para esto me esforcé tanto durante mi niñez, para esto es que me mantuve en pie ante todas las amarguras que viví?

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Me miro en el espejo, y no me reconozco. He perdido la lozanía de la juventud, más por causa de las penas que por el paso de los años, me he convertido en una mujer de piedra, fría e indomable. Le he dado mi alma, mi corazón y todo mi ser a Inglaterra como siempre fue mi deber, no me arrepiento, porque he vengado a mi madre, y a mí misma por las injurias del pasado. Desde el momento en que fui unjida y coronada, le devolví el honor a mi casta, recuperé lo que siempre fue mío por derecho, eliminé a mis enemigos y a los enemigos de la Santa Fe Católica, uno por uno cayeron ante las llamas del fuego puro de la justicia de Dios, misma que por mi mano recibieron, poco a poco he destruído la herejía que vino con La Bolena y su estirpe, Inglaterra es una vez más una con Dios y el Santo Padre. He cumplido con un deber sagrado, y aún así, no soy amada. El reino entero murmura, la gente me llama “Maria Sangrienta”, me temen y me odian, no se atreven a decirme de frente lo que gritan a mis espaldas. Soy la Reina, María Primera de Inglaterra, regente sin duda alguna, y no soy amada. Hablan de mi a escondidas. Susurran sobre como la reina envejece y aún no se escucha el llanto del heredero al trono de Inglaterra. ¡Dios, como me torturan, lo peor es que son palabras ciertas, es una verdad que me hiere profundamente! ¿Acaso estoy maldita, acaso Dios me castiga negándome lo que más he querido tener en el mundo? Un hijo, un hijo al cual amar, un hijo que limpie mi alma de tantas amarguras, de tantos pesares y que borre para siempre de mí, ese pasado que tanto me envenena. Un hijo me daría la paz que perdí hace muchos años, me devolvería la alegría de vivir, hasta la misma juventud perdida. Un hijo que sería mi legado más grande, un hijo que continuaría con lo que ya he iniciado. Un hijo, una bendición, una criatura a la que amaría y entregaría todo, sin importar su género, pues jamás cometería el cruel error de mi padre, de rechazar a una hija por el deseo de un heredero varón, yo no cometería nunca esa crueldad con quien sería sangre de mi sangre, carne de mi carne.

Pero estoy vacía, y me niego a creer que no hay oportunidad, ya tuve esa dulce sensación dentro de mí una vez, y fue como si algún maleficio le hubiera hecho desaparecer. Dios sabe cuanto le anhelaba, como pude sentir que florecía la vida misma en mi vientre, no fue engaño, yo se que estaba dentro de mí. Pero por voluntad divina o maligna, no pudo ser, perdí a ese pequeño ser que el amor creó dentro de mis entrañas y mi corazón, sin dolor físico, pero si en mi alma, que nunca pudo entender el por qué de tan cruel burla de este destino mío que se empeña en condenarme a la soledad.

Destino maldito! Destino que cambió mi vida en mis años de niña cuando permitió que Ana Bolena descargara su veneno en mi vida, arrebatándome todo, a mi padre, a mi madre, mi rango y todo lo que yo amaba. Cruel destino que me puso por delante madrastras que poco hicieron por mí, por miedo a enfurecer al tirano de mi padre, al que aveces perdono, y al que aveces odio con todo el corazón, cada vez que pienso en las lágrimas de mi amada madre, y en las mías, Como sufrí en aquellos días, lejos de quien me dio el ser y de todo lo que dulcemente me rodeaba, de la protección que el rango de princesa me otorgaba, como recuerdo el terror de pensar que al día siguiente vería ante mí la sentencia de mi muerte, por la mano de esa perra de Bolena, que me convirtió en bastarda bajo el embrujo que la hizo reina sobre la desgracia de mi madre. Y es por eso que no puedo amar sin dudas a mi hermana como lo manda la ley de Dios, no solo por ser el fruto de la unión que me separó de todo lo que una vez fue enteramente mío, también, porque siempre me sentí menos que ella, si esa es la verdad aunque me pese. Posee una belleza que opaca a la que yo una vez tuve, heredó lo mejor de su madre, tiene ese encanto hechizante que atrae a las masas, los embruja con solo una sonrisa, ¡es por eso que ella no debe ser mi sucesora, no lo puedo permitir! Isabel será lo que una vez fue su madre, una reina hereje, apartará al reino de la obediencia al Santo Padre, de el dulce consuelo de la Madre de Cristo, reinstalará el mal que yo ya he erradicado y no lo puedo permitir! Y aún con todo lo que ya se, no la puedo odiar, no la puedo matar, por sus venas corre la misma sangre que por las mías, admito que recuerdo con cariño los momentos que pasamos juntas cuando la soledad y el desprecio eran nuestra única compañía. Mas como creer ahora en sus palabras de afecto, si estoy segura que su corazón anhela tener sobre su cabeza la corona que yo poseo, estoy segura que su alma es tan ambiciosa como la de su estirpe materna, ella en los huesos también es una Bolena. Isabel, mi hermana y mi rival, mi ruina, y al mismo tiempo la salvación de este reino.

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Isabel, tan joven aún, en cambio yo, a mi me han consumido las penas de tal manera, que los años se pueden considerar inocentes, ante el deterioro tan evidente en mi apariencia. Isabel, la envidio y le temo, la quiero y la desprecio, nos unen y nos separan tantas cosas. Me pregunto, ¿ como ha podido superar los martirios de su soledad, como ha logrado mantenerse fresca y bella a pesar de los miedos que la torturan, por qué a ella le ha bendecido la vida con belleza espléndida a pesar de sus penas, mientras que a mí me ha emparejado con la misma decadencia? No tengo respuestas que me conforten, que me hagan comprender y conformarme, y es por eso que ese amor que le tuve cuando era una niña, denigrada a bastarda como yo, sin madre y sin rango, se ha desvanecido, la rivalidad ha tomado el lugar de ese sentimiento que una vez fue dulce, pero que ya no es más que solo amargura.

Lejos están de mi aquellos recuerdos que dulcemente me consolaban, todo cambió desde los días en que mis padres se mostraban amor a puertas abiertas, tanto que les vi besarse, romper protocolos para brindarse sonrisas, mi padre el Rey, que corría a recibirme en sus brazos y me llamaba “La Perla de su Mundo”. Y mi madre, la hermosa Reina Catalina de Aragón, que guiaba con ternura mis pasos, la que con fervor curaba mis fiebres y me cantaba nanas en la madrugada cuando las pesadillas me aterraban. Dios sabe cuanto extraño su dulce voz, sus consejos, y aquellos regaños, que inspiraban admiración y respeto, pero miedo, eso jamás. Mis padres fueron Reyes, mas yo nunca los vi de esa manera, fueron mis padres, y con ellos fui feliz. Por eso siempre prometía a mi madre que el día que fuera Reina de Inglaterra, haría honores a mi Casta de Castilla y Aragón, haría que la Rosa Tudor marcara por siempre la Corona. Pero Ana Bolena me arrebató todo, y no importa si dicen que mi padre tuvo mil amantes, y un bastardo al que puso por encima de mí, aún con todo aquello yo era la luz de sus ojos, yo lo se. Fue ella y la llegada de Isabel, quienes sellaron mi destino para mal, y todo lo que fui, todo lo que amé, ya nunca más fue mío, y aquella promesa que mil veces le hice a mi madre, ahora mismo se tambalea, se encuentra en peligro de perecer sin ser realmente cumplida.

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Isabel, siento que tristememente en un tiempo no tendré muchas fuerzas para enfrentarte, a veces quisiera olvidar todo, y tenerte conmigo, verte como la hermana que siempre quise a mi lado, más no puedo, ya sea por envidia, por miedo, por desprecio u orgullo, debo mantenerte lejos. Yo se, que los ojos de mi esposo el Rey se han deleitado con tus encantos, los mismos que heredaste de tu madre, bien que eres cuña de su mismo árbol. ¡Me duele y me indigna! Pero en el fondo quisiera ser como tú. Te veo tan llena de vida, mientras que yo me consumo como una llama en medio de la tormenta, sonríes con dulzura, y yo ya no puedo, eres delicada, como lo fui yo en mis años felices, eres ciertamente hija de nuestro padre, hija del león, igual que yo, pero más fuerte, has sobrevivido tus penas sin marchitarte, y es por eso que, aunque me cueste admitirlo, siento que en este reino no habrá reina más amada y recordada que tú. Pues ya no puedo seguir posponiendo lo inevitable, mis fuerzas no son las mismas, y siento que lo que llevo en mi vientre, no es el dulce latir de un hijo, aunque lo deseo con todas mis fuerzas, cada día que pasa me doy cuenta que lo que crece dentro de mi me absorbe la vida, se alimenta de mi de manera ponzoñosa, más no con la dulzura con la que un a criatura de Dios lo hace dentro del vientre materno. Permita Dios y me equivoque, pero si estas dudas se tornan ciertas, tendré que heredarte todo Isabel, pasar mi corona sobre tu cabeza, y al irme de este mundo ver una vez más la perversa sonrisa de tu madre, regocijada en tu triunfo sobre mí.

Lágrimas negras he llorado, lágrimas que encierran rabia, rencor, soledad, amargura y miedo. Lágrimas negras que comencé a derramar desde el día en que me separaron de mi madre, desde el momento en el que el Rey mi padre me lanzó a la sombras para llevar a la luz a su amante en todo su esplendor, mientras que su verdadera reina, se consumía en le verguenza y en la pena de su abandono. Lágrimas negras derramé cuando me degradaron a sirvienta, siguiendo los pasos de mi hermana recién nacida y bajando la cabeza ante aquellos que siempre debieron inclinarse ante mí. Lágrimas negras he llorado sin consuelo, a solas, con el único apoyo de mis recuerdos felices, de aquella niñez que fue cortada tan temprano. Siempre escuché de mis damas decir: que las lágrimas de una princesa, siempre deben ser de alegría, pues el alma de una princesa, siempre debe brillar de felicidad, como el oro con el que fue labrada su corona al nacer. Fácil forjar palabras bellas para alagar a una princesa cuando la gloria le favorece, más cuando ésta cae en desgracia, nadie forja palabras de igual belleza para consolar, y hacer que esas lágrimas negras, tan llenas de agonía, dejen de brotar.

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Lágrimas negras han secado mi alma, se han llevado la juventud de mi rostro, lavaron con su frialdad mi alegría de vivir, ya nunca pude ser de nuevo aquella joven de gran altivez, de presencia cálida que a todos agradaba. Lágrimas negras, lloré cuando al ver mi reflejo en los ojos de mi padre el rey, ya no veía el amor de un padre, si no la rigidez del tirano que solo buscaba mi obediencia y complacencia absoluta, en su mirada fría pude ver mi propio temor, pues me di cuenta que si me mantenía firme en mis convicciones, era claro que no se tocaría el corazón para ordenar mi muerte. A partir de ese momento mi alma se fue marchitando, y así mis sueños e ilusiones igual fueron pereciendo. Pasaba el tiempo y para mí no habia esperanzas, solo la muerte de mi hermano me devolvió lo que siempre debió ser mío en primer lugar, El Trono de Inglaterra.

La dulce victoria de mi llegada al trono fue cálida, yo tenía tanto por hacer, por primera vez me sentí segura, recompensada por tantos años de rechazo y amargura. Pero de nada sirvió, porque la soledad no me abandona, y tampoco la mala fortuna. En las noches siguen brotando lágrimas negras, caen por mi rostro tan frías como el invierno mas duro, porque no hay alegría a pesar de mis logros, no hay amor a pesar de mi deseo, no, no hay amor, pues no lo veo en los ojos de el hombre al que amo, en el que había puesto todas mis esperanzas de felicidad. Me mira con desprecio, y aveces creo que hasta con asco, y no le culpo, ya no soy hermosa, al menos no como una vez lo fuí, pero le amo, ¿acaso no es eso suficiente? No, creo que no lo es, tanto que mi madre amó a mi padre, y aún así fue abandonada. ¿Por qué, Por qué para una reina es tan dificil ser amada por lo que es, por quien es, es que acaso las reinas de Inglaterra tienen prohibido el placer de amar y ser correspondidas, con la misma libertad y pureza que ese sentimiento divino profesa.

Cruel destino el mío que solo ha hecho brotar de mis ojos lágrimas negras. Tan corta fue la dicha en mi vida, y tan larga mi pena. ¿Será que mi estirpe está maldita, a causa de pecados pasados, será este el precio a pagar? Dios sabe que mis actos fueron hechos con el fin de traer a Inglaterra de vuelta a la luz, a la Fe única y verdadera. No me arrepiento de nada, pues lo hice actuando con mi consciencia, hice lo que juré en silencio mi madre y a mí misma. Pero quizás sea mi negativa a perdonar, lo que realmente me esté envenenando por dentro. Puede que esa sea la raíz de todos mis males, pues Dios mismo ha ordenado en Su palabra perdonar, aún a nuestros más fuertes enemigos. Bien pues, tomando en cuenta que dentro de mí, siento un nuevo ardor de vida, elevo al cielo una plegaria, abro mi corazón al perdón, pues si es el precio a pagar por una esperanza de felicidad, de ser amada por mi pueblo como su reina, estoy dispuesta a tragame mi orgullo, y dar el perdón a quienes más daño me hicieron en esta vida.

De rodillas, suplico a Dios y a la dulce Virgen María que escuchen mi clamor, es mi deseo, dejar mi odio atrás, que me den la fuerza que necesito para tragarme mi orgullo, y perdonar a mi padre, a esa mujer, Ana Bolena, que con su lujuria y ambición destruyó mi vida, pido por el alma de ambos, para que reciban el perdón.Te perdono, padre mío, por darme el cruel látigo de tu desprecio después de tantos años de veneración y amor, jamás podrás imaginar el dolor tan inmenso que me hiciste padecer, y si está tu alma finalmente en el cielo, no lo se, aún me siento muy herida como para anhelar que así sea, aunque mi corazón te perdone en mi memoria están ardiendo aún los recuerdos de esos días negros, que tanto marcaron mi existencia. Y ella, Ana Bolena, espero que Dios le haya perdonado todo el mal que causó, tanto a mí como a tantos hombres buenos que sirvieron al Rey con fervor y lealtad. Mi confesor una vez me dijo que ella con la pérdida de su cabeza ya había pagado todas sus maldades, tal vez sea la verdad, y sea hora de olvidarla y dejar de pensar en ella con tanto odio. Pido también por el alma de mi madre, a la que nunca olvido, la que vive en mi corazón y en mis recuerdos, que esté en paz y me ayude desde el cielo a hallar la mía propia. Y más que todo, pido que esto que siento latiendo dentro de mí, sea la esperanza de este reino, y mi redención, mi recompensa a tantos años de miedo y sufrimientos. Que me equivoque en mis malos pensamientos, que sea vida y no desventura o enfermedad lo que dentro de mi viente siento crecer, que sea un heredero, creo merecer esa bendición, ¿verdad?

Deus, animam meam: dimittite me ut plangeret prohibere nigrum lacrimis. In nomine Patris et Filii et Spiritus Sancti, Amen.

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English Translation:

Black Tears:  The Prayer of Mary Tudor, Queen of England

I once was the pearl of this kingdom, the light of the eyes of the King my father, and the whole life of the queen, my mother. Heir of noble blood, strong caste, with ancestry of impeccable lineage, and precious legacy, but still, in spite of all that, I am not loved by my kingdom, neither by my husband nor by those around me. I, the granddaughter of Isabel and Ferdinand of Castile, daughter of the noble Catherine of Aragon, daughter of the lion, Henry The VIII, I am reduced to nothing, with a crown that is too heavy for me to carry, it hurts me, a crown that gives me an immense power But at the same time condemns me to extreme solitude. What good is it to have it on my head if it can not give me the love of my subjects and my husband, what good is it to me if it can not give me heirs, what good is it if it inspires only the fear of those who cross my path? It is for this that I worked so hard in my early years, it is for this that I kept myself together during all my years of suffering?

I look in the mirror, and I do not recognize myself. I have lost the freshness of youth, more because of the pain than for nature of years, I have become a woman of stone, cold and indomitable. I have given my soul, my heart and my whole being to England as it was always my duty, I do not regret it, because I have avenged my mother, and myself for the insults of the past. From the moment I was anointed and crowned, I returned the honor to my caste, recovered what was always mine by right, I eliminated my enemies and the enemies of the Holy Catholic Faith, one by one fell before the flames of pure fire Of the justice of God, which by my hand they have received, I have gradually destroyed the heresy that came with The Boleyns, its lineage and all their allies, England is once again one with God and the Holy Father. I have fulfilled a sacred duty, and yet, I am not loved. The whole kingdom murmurs, people call me “Bloody Mary”, they fear me and they hate me, they do not dare to tell me on my face what they shout behind my back. I am the Queen, Mary First of England, regent without doubt, and I am not loved. They talk about me on the sly. They whisper about how the queen grows old and the cry of the heir to the throne of England is not yet heard. They torture me, the worst thing is that their words are true, it is a truth that deeply hurts me! Am I cursed?, perhaps God punishes me by denying me what I have wanted most in the world. A son, a son to love, a son who cleans my soul from so many sorrows, from that past that poisons me so much. A son would give me the peace I lost many years ago, would give me back the joy of living, even the lost youth. A son who would be my greatest legacy, a son who would continue with what I have already begun. A son, a blessing, a creature I will love and give everything, regardless of gender, for I would never commit the cruel error of my father, to reject a daughter for the will of a male heir, I would never commit that cruelty with who would be blood of my blood, flesh of my flesh.

But I am empty, and I refuse to believe that there is no chance, I already had that sweet sensation inside me once, and it was as if some curse had made it disappear. God knows how much I longed for a child, how I felt that life itself flourished in my womb, it was not deception, I knew it was inside me. But by divine will or dark evil, could not be, I lost that little being that love created inside my heart without physical pain, why so cruel mockery of This destiny of mine that insists on condemning me to solitude?

Damn destiny! Destiny that changed my life in my childhood when allowed Anne Boleyn to discharge her poison in my life, snatching everything, my father, my mother, my rank and everything I loved. Cruel destiny that put me before stepmothers who did little for me, for fear of infuriating the tyrant of my father, whom I sometimes forgive, and whom I sometimes hate with all my heart, whenever I think of the tears of my beloved mother , And in mine, As I suffered in those days, far from who gave me life and everything that sweetly surrounded me, the protection that the rank of princess granted me, as I remember the terror of thinking that the next day I would see Before me the sentence of my death, by the hand of that bitch of Boleyn, who made me a bastard under the spell that made her reign over my mother’s misfortune. And that is why I can not love my sister as God’s law commands, not only because she is the fruit of the union that separated me from everything that was once entirely mine. Also because I always felt less Than her, that is a fact I can not deny.

She has a beauty that overshadows the one I once had, she inherited the best of her mother, Elizabeth has that enchanting charm that attracts the masses, she bewitches them with just a smile, that is why she should not be my successor, no I can not allow it! Elizabeth will be what her mother once was, a heretic queen, she will remove this kingdom from obedience to the Holy Father, from the sweet consolation of the Mother of Christ, she will reinstall the evil that I have eradicated and I can not allow it! And even with all that I already know, I can not hate her, I can not kill her, her blood is also my blood, I admit that I remember with affection the moments we spent together when loneliness and contempt were our only company. But as I now believe in her words of affection, I am also sure that her heart yearns to have on her head the crown that I possess, I am certain that her soul is as ambitious as that of her maternal race, she in the bones is also a Boleyn . Elizabeth, my sister and my rival, my ruin, and at the same time the salvation of this kingdom.

Elizabeth, so young, yet I have been so consumed with such pains that the years can be considered innocent, in the face of the deterioration so evident in my appearance. Isabel, I envy her and I fear her, I love her, the sorrows unite us and separate us from so many things. I wonder, how she has overcome the martyrdoms of her solitude, how she has managed to keep herself fresh and beautiful despite the fears that torture her, why she has blessed her life with splendid beauty despite her sorrows, and I am in decay? I have no answers that comfort me, that makes me understand and conform, We both were denigrated, called bastards and we both lost all we loved and cared for, and yet, I was the most devastated by bitterness.

Far away are those memories that sweetly comforted me, everything changed from the days when my parents showed their love openly, many times I saw them kissing, breaking protocols to give themselves smiles, my father the King, who ran to receive me in his Arms and called me “The Pearl of his World”. And my mother, the beautiful Queen Catherine of Aragon, who tenderly guided my steps, who fervently cured my fevers and sang me nanas at dawn when the nightmares terrified me. God knows how much I miss her sweet voice, her advice, and those scoldings, which inspired admiration and respect, never fear. My parents were Kings, but I never saw them that way, they were my parents, and with them I was happy. That is why I always promised my mother that on the day that I was Queen of England, I would honor my Caste of Castile and Aragon, I would lead the Tudor Rose to mark forever the Crown. But Anne Boleyn took everything from me, and it does not matter if they say that my father had a thousand lovers, and a bastard whom he put above me, even with all that I was the light of his eyes, I know. It was her and the arrival of Elizabeth, who sealed my destiny, and everything I was, everything I loved, was never mine anymore, and that promise that I made to my mother a thousand times, is now tottering, Is in danger of perishing without actually being fulfilled.

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Elizabeth, I feel that sadly in a while I will not have much strength to face you, sometimes I want to forget everything, and to have you with me, to see you as the sister I always loved at my side, but I can not, either out of envy, out of fear, out of contempt Or pride, I must keep you away. I know that the eyes of my husband the King have delighted in your charms, the same ones you inherited from your mother, well, you are wedge of her own tree. It hurts and makes me angry! But deep down I would like to be like you. I see you so full of life, while I consume like a flame in the midst of the storm, you smile sweetly, and I can not, you are delicate, as I was in my happy years, you are certainly the daughter of our father, Daughter of the lion, just like me, but stronger, you have survived your sorrows without waning, and that is why, although I admit it, I feel that in this kingdom there will be no queen more loved and remembered than you. For I can no longer postpone the inevitable, my strength is not the same, and I feel that what I carry in my womb, is not the sweet touch of a child, although I want it with all my strength, every day that passes I realize That what grows within me absorbs my life, it feeds on me in a poisonous way, but not with the sweetness with which a creature of God does it within the womb. I pray God that I am wrong, but if these doubts become true, I will have to inherit all to Elizabeth, pass my crown on her head, and when I leave this world I will see once again the wicked smile of her mother, rejoicing in the triumph of her daughter over me .

Black tears I cried, tears that contain anger, rancor, loneliness, bitterness and fear. Black tears that I began to spill from the day they separated me from my mother, from the moment the King my father cast me into the shadows to bring to light his mistress in all her splendor, while his true queen , Was consumed in the shame and the pain of his abandonment. Black tears I shed when I was degraded to a servant, following in the footsteps of my newborn sister and lowering my head to those who always had to bow before me. Black tears I cried without consolation, alone, with the only support of my happy memories, of that childhood that was cut so early. I always heard of my ladies saying that the tears of a princess must always be of joy, for the soul of a princess must always shine with happiness, like the gold with which her crown was wrought at birth. It is easy to forge beautiful words to swell a princess when glory favors her, but when she falls in disgrace, no one forges words of equal beauty to comfort, and make those black tears, so full of agony, cease to spring.

Black tears have dried my soul, they have taken away the youth of my face, washed with coldness my joy of living, and I will never again be that young woman of great pride, with a warm presence that pleased everyone. Black tears, I cried when seeing my reflection in the eyes of my father the king, I no longer saw the love of a father, but the rigidity of the tyrant who only sought my obedience and absolute complacency, in his cold gaze I could see my own Fear, for I realized that if I held firm in my convictions, it was clear that he would not touch his heart to order my death. From that moment my soul wilted, and so my dreams and illusions alike were perishing. Time passed and for me there was no hope, only the death of my brother gave back to me what must have always been mine in the first place, The Throne of England.

The sweet victory of my arrival to the throne was warm, I had so much to do, for the first time I felt safe, rewarded by so many years of rejection and bitterness. But it did no good, because loneliness does not abandon me, nor does bad luck. In the nights, black tears continue to come, they fall on my face as cold as the hardest winter, because there is no joy despite my achievements, there is no love despite my desire, no, there is no love, for I do not see it in the Eyes of the man I love, in whom I had put all my hopes of happiness. He looks at me with contempt, and sometimes I think that even with disgust, and I do not blame him, I’m not beautiful anymore, at least not as I once was, but I love him, is not that enough? No, I do not think so, so much so that my mother loved my father, and yet she was abandoned. Why, why is it that for a queen it is so difficult to be loved for what she is, for who she is, is it that the queens of England are forbidden the pleasure of loving and being reciprocated with the same freedom and purity as that divine feeling Professes.

Cruel destiny of mine that only made black tears come out of my eyes. So brief was happiness in my life, and so long my grief. Shall my race be cursed, because of past sins, is this the price to pay? God knows that my actions were done in order to bring England back to the light, to the only true Faith. I do not regret anything, because I did it by acting with my conscience, I did what I swore in silence, for my mother and myself. But maybe it’s my refusal to forgive, which is really poisoning me inside. That may be the root of all my evils, for God himself has commanded in His word to forgive even our strongest enemies. Well, taking into account that within me, I feel a new ardor of life, I raise a prayer to heaven, I open my heart to forgiveness, for if it is the price to pay for a hope of happiness, to be loved by my people as His queen, I am ready to swallow my pride, and give the forgiveness to those who have done the most harm in my life.

On my knees, I beg God and the sweet Virgin Mary to listen to my prayer, it is my desire, to leave my hatred behind, to develop the strength I need to swallow my pride, and to forgive my father, that woman, Anne Boleyn, Who with her lust and ambition destroyed my life, I ask for the soul of both, so that they may receive forgiveness. I forgive you, my father, for giving me the cruel whip of your rejection after so many years of veneration and love, you can never imagine the Pain that you made me suffer, and if your soul is finally in heaven, I do not know, I still feel very hurt to yearn for it to be so, although my heart forgives you, in my memory are still burning the memories of those dark days, that marked so much my existence. And she, Anne Boleyn, I hope that God has forgiven all the evil she caused, both me and so many good men who served the King with fervor and loyalty. My confessor once told me that with the loss of her head she had already paid for all her evil action, perhaps it is the truth, and it is time to forget and stop thinking about her with so much hatred. I also ask for the soul of my mother, whom I never forget, who lives in my heart and in my memories, who is at peace and help me from heaven to find my own. And above all, I ask that what I feel beating within me, may be the hope of this kingdom, and my redemption, my reward for so many years of fear and suffering. I hope that I am wrong in my bad thoughts, that is life and not misfortune or disease what I feel growing, that he is an heir, I think I deserve that blessing, right?

Deus, animam meam: dimittite me ut plangeret prohibere nigrum lacrimis. In nomine Patris et Filii et Spiritus Sancti, Amen

La Dance De La Nymph, Z Court

October 21, 2014 in News, Tudor Z Court by ADMIN: Royal Squire

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 Lady Guildford had soothed Mary and rallied her spirits for the ball that was being held in her honor by the Dauphin. Lady Guildford let Elizabeth Grey, Anne and Mary Boleyn enter and help dress Mary in a crimson gown embroidered with glittering jewels and ermine bell sleeves in the French style. Mary and her ladies entered the dazzling hall set a light with hundreds of flickering candles. The musicians were on the balcony playing lively tunes. The tables were laden with gold jeweled plates and goblets. Lilly’s filled the room in shinning vessels, their sweet perfume filled the air. Mary’s ladies were giggling as they noted all the handsome French men when the Dauphine approached Mary and took her hand with Claude by his side. Mary looked sideways and her eyes locked with those of Charles Brandon. She quickly looked away. It was the only way she could play her part as the happy bride.

 

Dauphine François

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Mon Dieu! She is lovely! Far too sweet a rose for such an old man. Sister to the Lion of England, yet delicate as a blossom of spring. I glance at my wife. Sweet, pious, obedient Claude. One day I will owe my throne to her, if the old man does not get a son on this beauty first. My mother, ever watchful of my behavior, nods at me. I greet this princess as if she were no threat to me at all, ”Bonsoir Your Grace. Enchante!” As I approached, I noticed her glance toward the well dressed Charles Brandon. An amour? Interesting. I give her my most debonnaire smile, ”I hope you enjoy the festivities tonight. Indeed, we are all most pleased at your arrival, and I am your devoted servant! I had wished this hall filled with candles to delight you, but your beauty eclipses them all. I am afraid my heart will break if you will not allow me the first dance! Please, take pity on me, for I am but a poor man, who desires only to be graced with your smile and a moment or two of your time.”

 

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The stories of the dauphine’s charm were not exaggerated. He engaged me politely on my ride to Abbeville but tonight it feels as if he is romancing me. I can see why the women of this court find him irrisitable, poor Claude, I imagine she must suffer his infidelities quietly. I will warn my ladies to be leary of the advances of Dauphine François. I smile as if I am thrilled with his flirterions and listen intently, while also noting the splendor of the hall. The tapestries are all made with gold and silver thread that sparkle. I want to touch the elegant brocades and velvets that are used sumptuously throughout the hall. The dauphine takes my hand and sweeps me onto the dance floor twirling me around and around most gracefully. I jump as he catches me and match him step for step. He dances as if he is on air and I cannot help but enjoy myself as we move side by side. “ Bon même Dauphine François. Comment ne pas bénéficier d’une telle gaieté élégant? I cannot thank you and Claude for such a gracious and festive welcome. I could not have received such a warm salutation if I was back in London. I must say that your dancing is as gilded as your tongue. ” I smile slyly and lose myself to the music and let François lead me in through the ball in this exquisite dance. As the dauphine turns me I see the dour expression on Charles’ face and his look brings me back to the reality of my situation.”

 

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Foolish Boy! As I watch my son go twirling by, lifting the princess into the air, I feel my irritation rise. He is always enchanted by a pretty face, in the midst of some amour. No less than three of his discarded lovelies are here tonight, but his poor little wife smiles sweetly. Well, I am not fooled by this smiling doll from England. She is a terrible threat to all of us- a terribly beautiful threat. She is lovely, no one can deny that. Her matched jewels sparkle in the light, my expert eyes can see that both they and her furs are of the finest quality. She sparkles too, smiling up at Francois. She has already enchanted King Louis, that lecherous fool, no doubt lighting the fires of lust in his dusty loins. If he gets her with child, with a male child, it is finite! And all of this is for nothing. One of my ladies is chattering to me, some adjustment must be made for the English. They are very formal in their dignities, and there has been some minor mistake in precedence. I send her away to deal with it, as I have spied something. Maybe nothing, but maybe something. Why does the Duke of Suffolk, resplendent in his silks and velvets, look so annoyed?I think, no I hope, I know the answer. He is a handsome fellow. Tall and broad, his heavy chain of office seems a light bauble on his frame. More than one of my ladies have smiled and batted their eyes at him. But it seems he has eyes only for the little princess. The dance is ending. I shall go and greet this lovely girl who has such power to take the Crown from my son. As I approach, my son’s smile flickers, like a boy caught in mischief. ”Mama!” he exclaims, as if he is happy I have interrupted them, ”Your Grace, allow me to present to you, my mother, Louise De Savoy, Duchess of Bourbon.”

 

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Mary Rose Tudor 

All at once the hairs on my neck stick up alerting me that I am in danger. Louise De Savoy may be smiling but her eyes cannot hide her true feelings.
She despises me, I am the only obstacle in the way of her son becoming the nest roi of France. If only she knew how much I dreaded the thought of King Louis taking me to his bed. I close my eyes for a minute to gain back my composure. I cannot crumble in front of anyone for I MUST play my part to perfection if Arthur is to ever keep his promise. The duchess is acting as a great lioness, protecting her cub from all harm. A dangerous enemy to have. “Bonsoir Madame, I am flattered by this beautiful ball your son has thrown in my honor. I will always be grateful to him for making me feel so welcomed. One in my position can always benefit from such a gallant friend. J’espère que nous pouvons devenir de bons amis et que vous me conseiller pour les moyens de votre tribunal. I would forever be in your debt for preventing me from making any mistakes in French etiquette. I know their is much you could teach me. I promise to be the perfect pupil.”
I take her hand and give her my most dazzling smile. ” I want us to be good friends because I believe we want the same things for my new country. ”

 

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“Oh, I am sure we do, Your Grace.”, I reply dryly. She has courage, this one. And no small bit of charm. And Francois is all but drooling. ”Of course you must enjoy your time here. Once you are Queen, your duties will change. I do not think the king has much vigor for dancing now.” Satisfied with the uncertainty in her eyes, I turn to my son, who looks at me somewhat anxiously. ”I think you have neglected your wife, Francois.Your Grace, please, if there is any way that I can help you adjust to your life here, or your marriage, do not hesitate to ask. I would love to be as a second mother to you here. The French court can be dangerous for a beautiful young girl.” Look at my gallant son! He can not get her away from me fast enough! ”Thank you, Madame.”, oh he IS angry. Amused, I watch him lead her away. There is more to this one than a pretty face.

 

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As always, my watchful eye is on my charge, I cannot help but fear for her safety in this court, the French court is altogether different from the English court. Mary is indeed beautiful tonight, nearly all of the men’s jaws dropped when she made her entrance. Charles Brandon kept his features schooled at Mary’s entrance, but I know from the lasting glance she gave him and the way he cannot take his eyes off of her, that he wants to be the one dancing with her. I shall have to find a way to subtly remind him that Mary is to be Louis’s wife and queen and that he should not let his emotions and jealousies give him away. When Françoise approaches her I make sure that I keep an especially close eye on them,  Françoise is known to enchant and woo ladies and then leave them alone and without their precious virtue. Mary is smarter than the ladies he attempts to seduce, she will not fall for his pretty words, but that doesn’t mean I can afford to let him do with her what he wishes. Someone clears their throat close to me and when I turn there is a well-dressed, but lower ranking French noble bowing to me. “Madame, may I be so bold to ask you for a dance?” He takes my hand and kisses it for longer than what was appropriate. I wrinkle my nose for just a second at his ill-mannered action and then cast one more glance at Mary, Louise de Savoy, Françoise’s  formidable mother is now talking with her, I can use this dance to get closer and try to hear what Louise might be saying to her. When the Frenchman looks up, I smile, nod, and let him lead me onto the floor.

 

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Elizabeth Grey, Viscountess Lisle

My eyes are feasting on the beauty and grandeur of this ball. I have never seen so many beautiful gowns, indeed, nor gallant gentlemen! My own gown is the loveliest I have ever worn, by far. Its vibrant blue color and sumptuous fabric make me feel as if I am someone else, some French lady. Anne Boleyn called me silly as we dressed, we are of an age though she acts much superior to me. Yet I am Viscountess Lisle, and she but a mere knight’s daughter. She shouldn’t speak to me thus, and I told her so. She is laughing now, saying something witty no doubt, as those around her titter with mirth. No matter, Princess Mary herself gave me the lovely gold chain at my waist, and I am betrothed to the most dashing man in England, Charles Brandon the Duke of Suffolk. He looks so handsome tonight, beautifully dressed and as tall as the Dauphin. Let Anne Boleyn laugh if she will. The Duke of Suffolk is the king’s great friend, and the rest of my days will be spent dancing at balls just like this, and she will be sent to marry some minor noble. I can not tear my eyes from the Duke, and suddenly he turns and sees me watching him. I blush like a maid not ten years old, instead of the fifteen year old lady that I am. But he smiles brightly, a sparkle in his eye, and approaches me. Is Anne watching? I hope so! As he comes closer, I hold my breath, hoping he finds my dress attractive and sees that I am no longer the child I was when he took me as his ward. I hope he will ask me to dance, and then I will be twirling to the music like the Princess and the Dauphin in the most beautiful court in the world!

 

Lady Anne Boleyn
photoAI gaze at Elizabeth Grey but laugh at my companions jokes and witty tales. I must remember that she has not had the upbringing that I had in the Archduchess’ household where I was taught how to be an esteemed noble woman and learn French. Princess Mary delights in my tales and my ability to speak almost perfect French. She treats the viscountess of Lisle as a doll to play with. I cannot help but roll my eyes at her air of superiority. She forgets my uncle is the Duke of Norfolk. Yet she, the viscountess is betrothed to a mere knight with no noble blood running through his veins. He is only a duke because of his friendship with the king. He may be handsome but he has the reputation of a cad. Look at the way he treated his first two wives, especially poor Anne Brown. I know in my heart that I will marry much better.

I have never been a court with my sister before. I do not know Mary very well since I have been gone so long. She has the rosy complexion, big blue eyes and the golden hair that is so admired in England. Apparently, the French appreciate it too because she is surrounded by French men vying for her attention. Witty she is not, thank goodness she has her looks to fall back on for I cannot see her writing poetry or reading the Greek philosophers. She doth know how to sew, I chuckle to myself.

I wear my new green, velvet gown that shows off my dark hair, a contrast to the other English women but which men find very exotic. I refuse to be an imitation of every other woman and I make up my own styles. No one has sleeves like mine with all their embellishments and added gold brocade. I wear a simple string on pearls with a gold B. Sometimes something as simplistic as this necklace looks more stunning then massive jewels worn on ones neck. But one must be able to carry off the look. Even Princess Mary admires my sense of French fashion. We are to look at bolts of fabric together in the morrow. A most handsome French noble asks me to dance and I forget all about the dull Elizabeth Grey as he leads me on to the dance floor with a bright smile. I lose myself in the beautiful music and the steps to the French dance.

 

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I watch as my husband leads Mary Tudor away from his mother, one of my ladies chattering away about the English princess behind me. My husband was clearly enamoured about his soon to be mother-in-law. Inwardly I sigh. To my court, I am ever patient. Of course they are dazzled, by the elegant princess, she is everything a princess should be. No doubt my father will be pleased. I clap as the dancers complete their steps and call compliments to the musicians. The English ladies are buzzing about the dance floor with flocks of men chasing each of them. I will keep a strict eye upon these women. They do not know their way amongst us yet.

 

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Mary Boleyn Z

I was not sure what to expect at this French court. My mother and father drilled into our heads that we are expected to behave as perfect English maids, and remember which family we serve (let us not forget we are Howard’s through our mother). The princess was all a-jitter this evening in preparation of this ball. her ladies were very excited to be off that horrid boat and and full of optimism as we begin our new French lives! I was wearing my best gown, a youthful flush in my cheeks and continued practising my French all afternoon. Anne was looking upon the other ladies haughtily, unimpressed with their French accent, correcting my pronunciation constantly. Once the princess was dancing, we could relax slightly. Every eye was upon Princess Mary who glittered as she glided across the floor. A young French man popped up before me, with a stream of pretty compliments. Another joins him and I laugh, give my hand to the first, promising the second man that I shall return presently. I spy my sister and the other ladies with French partners spinning about the room. I believe we shall enjoy the French court. I smile at another man over my shoulder who catches my eye. Yes, very much so.

 

Charles Brandon Z Qphoto5

My eyes scan the crowd gathered to celebrate the farce of a ceremony I have just endured. My heart has been beaten and crushed with the spiked mace of loss and the barbed lance of a love denied. Then a cold pain churns in my stomach as my Princess takes the arm of the interbred reptile who calls himself Louis. My lips begin to curl in a sneer but I set my face into a stoic mask. My gaze fixed, I look at the specimen who tried to procreate with his two cousins! Even declaring one of them incapable of the act due to disability, then after the annulment, his stinking hands and twisted thoughts slid to another cousin. After that failed to produce another interbred creature to bloat the House of Valois he has turned to my Princess! He now wishes to use her…… I hurl my thoughts aside, bile rises in my throat! Then the claws of despair grip my shoulders, contracting them so the agony of their embrace destroys my noble stance.

A mocking voice creeps to the front of my thoughts, ’A fine warrior you have become, your Grace’, my own mind mocks the weakening of my constitution. The arrow of Eros has pierced more than my heart, it has shattered the soldier’s pugnacious confidence and my commander’s spirit and leadership. What have I left beyond my duty as my world sinks into the chaos of damnation? Perhaps I have one point of refuge! I dive into and cling to my arrogance, gripping it to me, like the buckler that protects me in the tiltyard, it envelopes me with a faint glimmer of protection and resolve. It’s cover and protection may shield my true emotions from the reeking fops that surround me. Registering scorn for every member of the French Court, I straighten my back and lift my chin, I am the Duke of Suffolk and I will exhibit the superiority of the English Court. Mary glides into my view, a true English rose, a rose that towers above the weeds and insects of this pathetic crowd. The brilliance of her beauty captivates all around, my eyes linger for too long.

I am amazed that she had laid in my arms and offered me the purest love, kindest love even sacrificial love. A love I have never known in my sordid and shallow existence. Her beauty is true majesty, her movement like a swan gliding across a moonlit lake, her features are that of an angel that could break the heart of mankind. I tear my eyes away and look at the ground to stop the stoic mask crumbling. Replacing the mask and strengthening it with the look of English superiority, my mind registers the lascivious and drooling faces of the male courtiers. My hand travels to my dirk and my jaw clenches, the muscles of my arm tighten! Suddenly the cool waves of sense blow through my mind dampening the foolish aggression, ’What are you doing, for Gods sake? You represent the English Court, act like it’, the words weave their way through my emotions. My grip slackens and I look down upon my weapon of choice. The dirk, a suitable weapon of a Royal bodyguard for Court celebrations. The blade long enough to be effective, but would not tangle in my legs when I dance. Dance… I should dance!!

A small and slightly feverish thought takes hold of my wounded heart. This thought kindles a small ray of light in the darkness of the events around me. The small ray of hope is fuelled by the desperation of my situation. If I openly display to my Princess that another will take my hand, another will grace me in this dance, even stay with me during this evenings frivolities she may realise that I am the only one for her, that no matter what she may endure, she should be with me and no other. This ’other’ must not be the usual strumpets that have taken me into their beds, she must be of the finest nobility, a truly aristocratic family that is close to a Royal Household. My eyes gaze across the ladies of the French Court, but rest upon a face who locks my gaze. She flushes and her soft cheeks glow with pink, she is perfect, Elizabeth Grey, the Viscount of Lisle. She is my ward and to be my wife by arrangement, so both of our positions will be advanced in the English nobility. She is with the Boleyn wench and her gaggle of giggling maids, Elizabeth will be the junior of their circle, for me to pluck her from the group to be by my side will cause whispers and tongues wagging. My mouth breaks into a grin as my eyes sparkle, straightening my back I stride to her, moving several disgruntled courtiers aside. One or two make protests but a flash of my eyes silence their French tongues, they will not challenge my presence. Coming to the front of Elizabeth, I look deeply into her eyes. For all that she is very young she is a beauty and our difference in age seems of little importance when I must make all eyes, especially Mary’s, turn in our direction.

Extending my hand, I bow, as I take her hand in mine, I hold her palm delicately and place a soft kiss on her knuckles. Keeping her hand in mine I straighten myself, ”M’Lady, it is my duty to protect you in this den of vipers”, pulling her closer I whisper, ”And I do not mean the men”, smiling I cast a knowing glance to Boleyn and her ladies, already they are whispering as they cover their mouths with their hands Keeping her close to me, I raise her hand to my lips and kiss her fingers, ”M’Lady, will you grace me by being my partner for the next dance? We will have all the eyes of the court upon us as we dance together”……..

 

Mary Rose Tudor UK Zphoto7

I am gliding on the dance floor as if I was on air. François is as graceful of a dancer as I have ever seen. He has just told me a bawdy joke and I could not help myself and burst out in laughter. The splendor of this evening has overwhelmed all my senses. Each turn and twirl makes the gilded furniture and golden threads in the damask fabrics twinkle like stars in the moon light. I see King Louis smile as he speaks to those around him, while still keeping his eyes on me and François. I blow Louis a kiss and he pretends to catch it and put it on his heart, playing the part of the love sick suitor to perfection. His daughter Claude, holds his hand, seeming genially happy for her father’s upcoming nuptials. Yes, I can do what is required of me and become queen of the most sophisticated court in Europe. I feel giddy with joy when François turns me and my heart cries out in pain as I gasp for air. I feel a suffocating heat that comes wave after wave, my hand digs into François’.

He gives me a look of concern and walks me to the massive, ornately, carved chair next to King Louis and bids me to sit. I hear not what they say but greedily drink the goblet of wine that is offered to me. I bite my lips to hold back my tears for out on the dance floor, handsome in his doublet of the finest brocade is Charles. He is dancing with his ward, my junior attendant, Elizabeth Grey. I then remember that she is his betrothed, the viscountess of Lisle. If Louis lives many years he will marry her. My voice screams in my head, NO! It pounds as if the minstrels were beating their drums right next to me. I want to rip my bodice and wail to the world.

I love Charles and he loves me. Lady Guildford looks into my eyes and gets my attention she whispers for me to compose myself or all the world will know my secreti. I close my eyes and take some calming breaths, I am Mary Tudor, I can and will perform my duties to perfection. I say it over and over and then look at the concerned faces of Louis, Claude, and François while Lady Guilford fans me. I show them a wan smile. “ Your Majesty, please do not worry, I was in excellent hands with the Dauphine. I have been excited throughout all these enchanting festivities that I could not eat a bite of my supper. I fear that it caused me to become dizzy but Lady Guildford is bringing me a plate of venison and cheese. I am already feeling much better. It is impossible not to become overly excited by all the wondrous things I have seen on my journey and this delightful dance that has been given in my honor.” I reach for Louis’ hand and put it in mine, giving him a reassuring smile. I dare not look at the dance floor again and see Charles dancing with his ward for I am barely hanging on by a fragile and frayed rope.

 

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Joan Vaux, Lady Guildford

The man I am dancing with is trying very hard to keep my attention which was currently focused on Mary, eventually, he decides that I am not worth his time and he leaves me on the dance floor. Well, no matter, he is not worth my time either. I notice Mary’s demeanor change almost instantly while she is with Francois, her eyes are looking far beyond him and to Charles Brandon, dancing with his betrothed. She looks to me and I head for her immediately. She is faint, I head off to find her some provisions. When I return, she is her old self again, calm and collected. That’s my girl, later when we are alone, I will talk to her and ease her troubles. Louis overtakes her now and she needs to continue to work her charm on him.

 

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King Louis XII Z
“ I am glad you are thoroughly enjoying yourself, m’dear. But please, It would be no honor to your royal brother or myself, If I did not look after your health. ” Louis leans over in his makeshift throne to speak to the young princess, in as friendly a manner as possible. While doing so, he breathes in the scent of her perfume and becomes re-intoxicated by her presence and her beauty. It would not be long until they were wed and hopefully their union would be blessed with the new and vigorous prince he had been so long since denied. A prince that would keep his cousin and greedy, ever ambitious mother from his throne. Though aged, I  refrain from letting my desire become evident and continue to sing my praises to the younger girl, soon to be my queen.

 

Mary Rose Tudor UK Z

I look at this old man whose bed I must share and try not to show my repulsion. The smell of his stale breath makes me want to gag. He has few teeth left and what teeth he has are rotting but I give him my most dazzling smile. I will do what is expected of me and be the best queen I can, for that is the only way I will be able to marry Charles. “Your Majesty, please do not fret. What maiden could not become overwhelmed with all the splendor and magnificence of your court. I feel fine now that I have eaten. I do not recall ever enjoying myself so much. Only one thing could make this night better and that is if you will share one dance with me before this evening ends. Nothing would please me as much as that.” I get up and curtsey in front of Louis and extend my hand, hoping that my actions please him.

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King Louis XII Z

Quite pleased with her genuine charm, I take Mary’s hand and lead her to the middle of the floor. A wave of guests open up before them as they pass, singing praises and giving kind glances to the royal couple. Placing a hand on the young girl’s waist as we start to dance, I side eye Louise de Savoy and her pompous son, watching their sickening smiles and false airs. I am now very sure that I will finally be able to disappoint them in their long quest for a royal status. The shock on their faces when my young queen gives me my long awaited son would be priceless. Even if I failed to live to see the boy reach maturity, the satisfaction of knowing a direct Valois heir would follow me and my forefathers would be enough for me. As I spin the dainty princess in a twirl according to the pace of the music, I can eagerly await the glorious days ahead.

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The True Heir

September 2, 2014 in Tudor Uk Court by ADMIN: Royal Squire

Eustace Chapuys, the Imperial Ambassador sits at his worn desk as he writes the emperor. He feels that he failed Katherine and her health has deteriorated. The Emperor did not follow his advice to invade England to stop Henry from breaking with Rome and replacing the rightful Queen Katherine with the putone Anne Boleyn. His heart was broken for Katherine but he had to devote all his attention to Mary, Henry’s rightful heir. If Anne succeeded in giving birth to a son Chapuys felt that Mary’s life could be in peril. He was not going to fail the Princess Mary. He gives his servant the letter to be dispatched and has his groom ready his steed to visit Princess Mary.

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Princess Mary UK Q

I walked around the estate calmer now that I had finally been freed from serving the concubine’s daughter Elizabeth. The stress and mistreatment has brought back back many of my ailments and they did not want Elizabeth to be in danger. I keep rubbing my hands together, unaware of my nervous habit. Even though my new home is damp it feels better to be out of the babe’s household. I walk swiftly to the chapel as my gown sweeps the old rushes and light the candles as I kneel to the alter. Dei, a me quod vis, quaeso ut me. It faciat judicium conplacui. God, I beseech you to show me what you wish from me. Guide me so that I make the right decisions. Bless my father for he is under the spell of a witch and knows not what he is doing. Great men such as Fisher and More have lost their life because of the puta, Ann Boleyn.”
I weep in despair, I have not seen my mother in years and now she has become weaker from an unknown sickness. I have heard whispers that she is being poisoned, will I be next? How do I obey my father and follow my conscious? I can not turn my back on my mother and God. The years have taken their toll on me. I have been stripped of my rightful title and have been declared a bastard by my father. I hold my head, the anguish of what has become my life weighs too heavy on me. I know not which way to turn.
As I become lost in my thoughts, one of my attendants whispers that I have a visitor. I slowly stand up and a glimmer of hope seeps into my heart, could it be my father? I gather my celadon gown and rush out to greet my visitor, I rarely have one. I try not to hide my disappointment when I see that it is the Imperial Ambassador and not my father but Chapuys. He is my one true friend and I greet him warmly. He bows and takes my hand as we walk the grounds. ” What news have you of my mother, father and court?”

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Eustace Chapuys Uk

I walk with Mary noticing how the years have hurt her and are beginning to show on her face. She was still a beauty with much of her mother in her but she did not have the strength of Katherine. Katherine is happy to die a martyr but I pray to God that the same fate does not befall Mary. I can not do any more to save Katherine, that battle is lost. But I will devote myself to saving Mary. She is alone with no one to guide or protect her.
” The puta grows heavy with the child yet the King’s eyes have turned elsewhere. There is a Mistress Seymour he has become enraptured with but none of that will matter if Madame Boleyn gives your father a son. Her place will be secure forever and you may be in great peril. Mary, you must listen to me. I have arranged with your cousin the Holy Emperor to secretly transport you to Spain if the puta bears a son. You are still the rightful heir to those who adhere to the true religion. We will ride at night where a ship will be waiting for us to take you to safety under the protection of the Emperor. I would not do this if there was any other way to keep you safe. You must think of your duty to the people of England. ” I study Mary’s face and try not to look at her gown that is frayed at the bottom and has been hastily patched up. What a disgrace for the granddaughter of the great Queen Isabella.

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Princess Mary UK Q

I sigh and think hard, a life without hiding and fear that my next meal could kill me. Spain Would bring me happiness, the Emperor may even make a good marriage for me. This could be the answer to my prayers. “It would not be easy to escape from this prison.  But I fear you may be right. I can barely eat my meals after they’ve been tasted. I fear poison everyday. My poor mother has already been poisoned and I know the concubine will want me out of the way  as soon as she gives my father a son. My life would be intolerable. How will the Emperor treat me? Do you think my mother will try to run as well.” I say hoping that this could bring us together again.

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Eustace Chapuys Uk

I smile happily that I have piqued Mary’s interest and she seems open to the idea. I will not fail Mary as I have her mother. “The Emperor will treat you according to your proper title as future heir to the throne of England and as his dearest cousin. He will also help you find a good match, a prince noble enough for his cousin. As for your mother I fear she is too ill.”
Though even if she was well, she would never run, she will die the martyr. “ I am sorry, but many of her doctors do not know how much time she has left. I would believe she was being poisoned but her food is all tasted before she eats any. The doctor’s are not sure from what malady the Queen suffers. I am sorry to give you such bad news your Highness.” I embrace this poor young woman whose life has been turned upside down and is living in poverty and seclusion. As God is my witness I will not fail her.

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Princess Mary UK Q

I will pray for my mother’s soul, sed in ipsa Dei ulnis.  May she be delivered into God’s loving arms. My heart shatters at the thought of not being able to be with her in the end, nor to say goodbye. I wipe my tears quickly.. Even though I knew it was a sin, I wished Mistress Boleyn would have a terrible death and suffer as she has caused my mother to suffer. I stay quiet knowing that I would have to go to confession for my wicked thoughts. But the Boleyn woman is evil and put a spell on my beloved father. He would never have treated us so badly if it was not for the witch’s spells. I cross myself quickly as I shudder with fear. A life without fear was what I craved, to be recognized as the true princess and heir to the throne of England. The thought of finding a husband brought me some comfort. I knew one day I would return to England and bring her back to the true faith. “ I will agree to your plans, please inform me as soon as you know the details. I must go pray for God’s safety and that one day I will return to England and my rightful place as queen.”

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Eustace Chapuys Uk

“ Listen to me Mary, never lose hope or faith. God will see you through these terrible times. I have you best interests at heart and I shall not fail you. “I bend a knee and kiss her hand. ” Be careful and keep yourself well.” I watch Mary walk slowly  back to the manor and shake my head of what has befallen mother and daughter. I will return to my home and swiftly send the Emperor a missive with this news.

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QAB Book Review: INSIDE THE TUDOR COURT, by Lauren Mackay

August 12, 2014 in QAB Book Reviews by ADMIN: Royal Squire

by Marisa Levy

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I said they had had good experience in former times, the whole kingdom
having been disturbed by the War of the Roses; though it seems nowadays
as if they wished to sharpen the thorns of those very roses.

Imperial Ambassador Eustace Chapuys, 1533

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I had a discussion with Lauren Mackay where she told me a delightful story about the late renowned historian Eric Ives. He is known for his biography on Anne Boleyn, The Life and Death of Anne Boleyn, which many consider the “Anne Boleyn Bible”. They went to dinner where Ms. Mackay tried to sway him on his views of Eustace Chapuys, the Imperial Ambassador to the court of Henry VIII. Many historians dismiss what Chapuys reported about Anne Boleyn because of his bias against “La Putain” ( Whore ), as he called her, but this is where Ms. Mackay begs to differ. He was sending important information to Charles V, the Emperor, so why would Chapuys try to mislead him with falsehoods? Chapuys was only known to have malice towards Anne Boleyn and Thomas Cranmer, so does this make him an unreliable source? Ms. Mackay could not change Eric Ives’ views, but perhaps she can change the opinions of her readers of her outstandingly researched book Inside the Tudor Court.

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Inside the Tudor Court is written in a style that makes it enjoyable for the reader. You do not have to be a Tudor historian to become absorbed in this informative book. While Chapuys’ letters have been studied in great detail, there is not much known about his private life. There was no insight into who he was as a person, but this has all changed with his first biography by Lauren Mackay. She shows us his early life in Annecy before he came to the notice of Charles V to the last of Henry’s queens.

Being a lover of Tudor history, I was enthralled by seeing the notorious Henry VIII and his court through the eyes of Chapuys. He wrote about his interactions with Henry and it gave me a lot of new information about Henry’s diplomacy and his dealings with those in his court.

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Chapuys relationship with Thomas Cromwell was complicated, but I was grasped when I read about the dinners they shared and their conversations. There was real warmth and friendship between the two men. They both came up with strategies together when it was in England’s best interest to align itself with the Holy Roman Empire instead of France. Even so, King Henry might have had a difference of opinion and would catch both men off guard. Chapuys’ thoughts about Thomas Boleyn, George Boleyn and the Thomas Howard, Duke of Norfolk gives us captivating details into the personalities and actions of these men. It certainly reinforced my opinions about the Duke of Norfolk.

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I found Chapuys’ relationship with Katherine of Aragon and Mary touching. Chapuys agonized when he could no longer do anything to help Katherine’s situation. He pledged to take whatever steps needed to help Mary and advance her cause, even if that meant helping her escape England to save her life. He refused to let Mary become a martyr, though Katherine had no opposition to both her and her daughter dying as one. Chapuys also helped guide Mary through her tumultuous relationship with her father. He was the only person who she could depend upon. Chapuys’ devotion to both mother and daughter was genuine and weighed on him heavily.

Lauren Mackay makes you feel as if you pulled up a chair and you are observing Henry VIII and those who took a vital role in his court and personal life. It gives the reader a chance to see King Henry’s tantrums, wit, cunning and betrayals. This book is a must to add to anyone’s Tudor collection. I look forward to reading Ms. Mackay’s new venture about the Boleyn men.

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Lauren Mackay is an historian from Sydney, Australia who holds a Masters degree in History from the University of New England and is currently researching her Ph.D on Thomas and George Boleyn in the English Reformation at the University of Newcastle in Australia.  Lauren has an intense interest focuses on lesser known historical figures, as well as the beliefs, customs and diplomacy of the 16th century. Lauren has given several oral presentations focusing on her expertise and interests in both England and Australia. For more information about  Lauren Mackay, visit  her website at http://lauren-mackay.com/.

NON-FICTION

Inside the Tudor Court: Henry VIII and His Six Wives Through the Writings of the Spanish Ambassador Eustace Chapuys

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Reviewed by Marisa Levy

 

Tudor Rose, Z Court

July 22, 2014 in Historical Fiction, Tudor Z Court by ADMIN: Royal Squire

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Mary Rose Tudor UK

Mary retired with all her ladies after her reception in Abbeville. She was delighted with the reception she received from the French people. But she could not forget the rotting breath from the King when he kissed her. Mary’s personality was naturally exuberant and vivacious but she felt as if her limbs were made from bricks now. She tried to keep a serene, pleased expression on her face in front of her ladies but Lady Guildford knew that Mary was despondent. She asked all Mary’s ladies to leave and poured Mary a goblet of wine to steady her nerves. Françoise and his wife, the King’s daughter, Claude were throwing a ball in honor of Mary’s wedding to King Louis.  Lady Guildford wanted to comfort Mary and try to get her to rest so that she could perform her best at the ball tonight. Lady Guildford hoped that Charles Brandon would keep to himself for she could see the way Mary looked at him and was not fooled by either of them.

Joan Vaux, Lady Guildford

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I watched Mary swiftly drink the entire contents of her goblet in one go and decided that wine would not be beneficial to her. If I let her, she’d probably consume the entire bottle. A princess cannot show up drunk at a ball, or anywhere, it is not seemly. So I took her goblet from her and set it on the desk near the window.

“My dear child, you must keep a cheerful countenance.” I made my charge sit down on her bed. “I know Louis is not the most ideal King to marry, but remember all of the good you are doing for England, France will make a fine ally for the realm.”

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Mary Rose Tudor UK Z

I listened to Lady Guildford’s words but it did nothing to lift my spirits. The beauty of the room was lost to me. The furniture was gilded with lush crimson brocades and silks spun with gold thread. It was more luxurious then any chambers I had seen at home. I eyed the gold chalice and wished that I could be drunk at this ball. ” Lady Guildford, you did not have the pleasure of being kissed by his Grace, with his vile breath and rotting teeth. This is too much to be asked to do in the name of duty.”

I  knew one thing, I was going to hold Arthur to his promise. I  would marry Charles Brandon one day, of that I  am sure. I would do my duty and try to please the King and the people so that Arthur could not have any cause to complain about my behavior. I  would be beyond reproach and that meant I could NEVER be alone with Charles.

” I do not think one more drink of wine would cause me any harm. Do not worry, I will make England and Arthur proud. I shall follow your advice and remember my lady grandmother’s words about always carrying myself with dignity. I will charm King Louis and do my best to make him happy. Now may I please have some more wine?”

 

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Joan Vaux, Lady Guildford

I smiled sadly at my charge, I would not have wished her to get married to that randy old king. She needs a younger man. I know the man she wants is Charles Brandon, I see how they look at each other, like they are the only two people in the world.

“My dear, you must only endure for a little while. Louis must not be long for this world, just do your duty and then you shall be free of him.”

I concede defeat, if I do not allow Mary one more drink, or several, then she will wait until my back is turned and defy me then. “One more goblet, then we must dress you for the ball.” I pour her one more drink and hand it over to her.

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Mary Rose Tudor UK Z

I  stood up and went to Lady Guildford and embraced her, clinging to her as if she would never let go and finally allowed myself to be comforted by this woman who loved me. I cried uncontrollably as Lady Guildford cooed in my ear and stroked my blonde hair that had fallen loose. I shook and tried to keep from spilling my goblet of wine. I drank greedily as the ruby elixir finally calmed me and allowed me to control my emotions.

” I am ready Lady Gilbert, we must not let the French see any tears or displays of sadness. Do not worry, I will not drink anymore. Let us prepare for the ball, I will show this court that we English are just as light on our feet. I think the gown made out of silver tissue with the sliver threads, it will sparkle as I dance and the King’s gift of the diamond and pearl necklace will compliment it well. We can intertwine the silver thread with diamonds and pearls in my hair. Do you agree with that choice? ”

I was once again thankful for my brother making Lady Guildford in charge of my household and all my ladies. I knew I could face anything with my surrogate mother by my side. I took her hand and looked into her eyes.

” Lady Joan, thank you. I could not face this next chapter in my life without your comfort and sage advice. ” With those words I kissed her on her cheek and finally smiled.

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Joan Vaux, Lady Guildford

“Oh, come now, Mary,” I held her as she wept. My words of comfort did not comfort her. So I let her cry, better she do it here, than in front of her betrothed and his court.

When she brightened up and started talking about how she would like her hair festooned, I smiled at her and said: “That’s my girl.”

If only she were my daughter. I have my son of course; my dear Henry. But I always wanted a daughter, Mary is as good as. I have raised her and her sister with as much care as any mother would her daughter. I am happy to be with Mary during her marriage and counsel her.

By Lady Guildford and Mary Rose Tudor UK Z

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England’s Lonely Rose. The Story of Mary Tudor (Part I)

April 2, 2014 in Hall of Crowns (Mercy Rivera), News, Queens of World History by Mercy Rivera

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Mary Tudor, born to be queen, was a lady with ancestors that could have made her the Queen of Queens.  She was granddaughter of the fierce and wise Queen Isabella of Castile and the great King Ferdinand of Aragon, daughter of the most obedient, brave, pious and gentle Queen, Catherine of Aragon, first surviving royal seed of the most tyrant King of England, Henry the VIII.   All that power, all those elements of lineage mixed in her blood, strangely never played to her favor.  The sadness, the abandonment, pain, bitterness and desires of vengeance for the life she wanted to have and never reached to enjoy, turned her into a dark figure.

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She is called Bloody Mary for her cruel acts against the Protestants, but was Mary Tudor always the cold and bitter woman who lived only for the desire of revenge and her religious obsessions?  Is she the example of how cruelty can turn a gentle heart in to a mass of thorns?   Let’s look in the mirror of her life, but calling her in a different way, without mocking her existence in the name of an urban legend.

Mary Tudor was born in Greenwich Palace on February 18, 1516.  Her arrival was both a joy and a sign of hope for her parents, Queen Catherine of Aragon and King Henry VIII of England, since before her birth the Queen lost many children, including Henry, Duke of Cornwall and Prince of Wales, who lived only 56 days.  The King was happy but yet, he still wanted a son, but her mother the Queen, felt blessed enough to be content.  After three days of her birth, Princess Mary was baptized into the Catholic faith at the Church of the Observant Friars in Greenwich. The Princess’s godparents included her great-aunt the Countess of Devon, Lord Chancellor Thomas Wolsey, and the Duchess of Norfolk. Henry VIII’s cousin once removed,  Margaret Pole, 8th Countess of Salisbury, stood sponsor for Mary’s confirmation, which was held immediately after the baptism.  The following year, Princess Mary became a godmother herself when she was named as one of the sponsors of her cousin Frances Brandon.

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Princess Mary was a bright little girl and precocious in many ways. It is reported that in July 1520, when she was just four and a half years old, she performed gracefully with the virginals at court to the joy and admiration of the special visitors that day. When she was nine years old, Mary was addressed in a complimentary Latin oration by commissioners sent over from Flanders on commercial matters, and the Princess replied to them in the same language “with as much assurance and facility as if she had been twelve years old”.  Even when she was not the male heir he wanted, the King was fiercely proud of her.  Mary showed the high deference of her lineage in all the senses, and for that the King used to call her “The Pearl of his world”.

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Since the Princess was showing her immense capacity to capture the interest of ambassadors and business commissioners, the King decided to increase her level of learning by arranging her studies in Spanish, French and Italian.  Of course, behind the incredible success of Mary in her education was the hand of her mother.  Queen Catherine dedicated hours to Mary’s development at court.  She consulted Spanish scholars and tutors, but indeed it was the Queen herself who was the first Latin teacher in Mary’s life.  The Princess was also well instructed in music. She played the lute and the virginals with great skills.  She was also a great dancer, and her level and proper demeanor in her behavior at court was admirable. Mary was growing in a very healthy and loving environment.  According to David Starkey, the immense love, the King felt for his daughter was openly showed on 23 February 1518, when the Venetian ambassador, Giustiniani, had an audience at Windsor. The King ordered the Princess, who had just celebrated her second birthday, to be brought in. Solemnly, Wolsey, ambassador Giustiniani and the attendant lords kissed the child’s hand. Then Mary caught sight of Friar Dionysius Memo, the great Venetian organist, who was then resident keyboard virtuoso at Henry’s Court. ‘Priest! priest!’ she ‘commenced calling out in English’ and would not stop until Memo agreed to play for her. Henry was delighted at the display, which showed that Mary was in truth her father’s daughter: musical, precocious and imperious far beyond her years.”

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The Princess and her mother were also very close.  There was a special bond between them, something that was unusual among royal families.  Queen Catherine was a great mother to her, she dedicated time to her education, but she also spent time playing with her, and of course, Queen Catherine made sure that her daughter developed devotion for the religious life and the compromises that involved her future relationship with the people of the Realm.  Mary was a Princess, but the fact that she grew up at court with her parent gave her a personality that was uncommon for royal children. Mary was polite and kind with everyone around her. She played, laughed and ran through the halls and gardens of the palace like any other normal child.  Princess Mary was a happy girl. She had her parents beside her and a Kingdom that loved her and protected her. She knew no fear.  She had no worries. Indeed, the Princess had a wonderful childhood considering that in those times. Most royal children spent their days and nights among strangers who gave them all… but the essence of the warmth of a true home and family. Queen Catherine made a high standard raising her daughter. She worked hard to make her beloved princess a true heir of the throne of England, just like her parents did with her.  She gave Mary the best tutors:  Erasmus, Thomas More and Luis Vives, who she patronized personally. By 1523, Princess Mary of England was recognized by many institutions as one of the most well educated Princess in Europe.

Even when Princess Mary was giving steps and signs that she could be a great ruler in the future, the Kingdom under the Command of her Father, and with the intervention of Cardinal Wolsey, had other plans for her.   Sadly, like any other Royal Lady of her time, it was expected that she was used to climb and conquer in the lands of power outside the realm.  Earlier in time, when she was two years old, she was engaged with the French Dauphine. This marriage arrangement was dissolved when King Henry and King Francis became enemies. Later, when she was six years old she was engaged with the Holy Roman Emperor, Charles the V, who was 22.    Nobody at court believed that this arrangement would endure. On one side, the Princess was too young at the moment — and, everyone knew that Charles was a man of changeable character, incapable of keep his word and acting only when the opportunities were on his favor.  As was expected, Charles saw the tedious long waiting for Princess Mary to reach the lawful age of marriage (at the time it was 12) unbearable, so he decided to break his word. Instead, he married Princess Isabella of Portugal. Other arrangements for the Princess’s hand were made, she was also engaged for a time to King Francis’s youngest son, the Duke of Orleans, but this arrangement was also broken.  Many more marriage contracts were made in time, and like the others, almost broken in weeks or months. The King had hard times keeping good relationships with the main kingdoms around him, and that of course, affected the future of Mary’s life.  The nice part of all this messed up marriage contracts is that the princess was too young to understand these events properly.

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While she was growing, she was admired, respected and protected like the most precious jewel of the Kingdom.  She was bright, full of light. She danced at court. She amazed everyone with her formidable skills in speech, her innumerable talents and the charm she showed with every appearance at court.  Her mother the Queen was proud of her. The King her father was pleased, but sadly for him, that was not enough.

For the last time, Queen Catherine got pregnant, but delivered a stillborn girl. The hopes for a Prince were gone, and the King was devastated.  Dark ideas developed in his mind. Of course he had a bastard son with one of his mistresses, but he would never be loved or accepted as King. On the other hand, the King lost his once deep love for the Queen, he felt disappointed. He saw no more reasons to keep his marriage with her, not even the political power nor the reaction or peace of his realm made sense for him anymore.  He wanted a son, but he also wanted a new Queen.

As always, the Queen found refuge in the sweet company of her beloved child. Princess Mary gave her mother peace, and the Queen also found the perfect companion during her long hours of prayer, fasting and isolation.  Mary learned the deepness devotion and love for the Catholic Faith from her mother, the spiritual guidance that the Queen gave her was strong and profoundly based.  The Princess and her mother were attached by highly indissoluble ties: love, blood, lineage and religion.  Mother and daughter comforted each other behind the eyes of the courtiers, who always believed that the royal family was happy and content with their important lives.  Mary was growing up, and was starting to notice the distance between her parents. Like any other normal child would do, but as a princess, she had to stand above her feelings, endure them, and fight them as much as she could.

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One day, a new lady arrived to court. She was ordered to serve Queen Catherine as Maid of Honor — her name, Lady Anne Boleyn.  From day one, Anne Boleyn’s exotic looks and commanding presence rose above the other ladies at court, especially in the eyes of the still young and virile King Henry.   His majesty kept his deep desires for Anne to himself at first, avoiding even the senses of his Queen, but later in time, Her Majesty started to notice the interest of her husband in this new dark haired damsel.  The Queen noticed something else. Lady Anne was not the common lady. She was different. Her behavior at court was outstanding, an incredible artist, dancer, her virtues as lady in waiting were formidable, and the fact that she was all but docile among her other ladies, made her a difficult rival to defeat.

Queen Catherine kept Anne close to her at first, but later, she started to repulse her presence, and decided to keep her a little farther away. Queen Catherine’s closest ladies in waiting started to dislike Anne as well, and they spoke to their mistress about all the rumors at court about the King and Anne.  Rumors about secret encounters between them, the King constant visits to Hever Castle, the elevation in ranks of Anne’s father and brother, and the sudden change in Anne’s presence, wearing extreme expensive jewels, exquisite gowns in the French fashion rather than the English dress code.  Besides, the King also started to show his favoritism and devotion to Anne in public, which gave the proud lady the strength and freedom to even act boldly above the Queen and her dominion at court.

Slowly but surely, Lady Anne Boleyn would change the lives of Mary and her mother, in ways that they never even imagined in their worst nightmares.   After a time of romance play dates between Anne and the King, the terrible news arrived to the ears of the Queen. His Majesty wanted a divorce, based on the grounds that by marrying his brother’s wife, he broke God’s law, and by that, he was being condemned to be incapable of having male heirs.   The Queen was devastated. After years of love, loyalty, happiness, conquers and devotion to her King, she is asked for a divorce. But she was determined to keep her rank and her place in England.

A battle trying to debate the King’s Great Matter began, the King was moving all his pieces on his favor, and was willing to break with Rome only to marry Anne and have his wishes fulfilled.  On the other side of the battlefield, was the Queen, almost abandoned. Even when she won arguments and grounds along the way, she was indeed fading away.  She already lost the love of the King and that was her major disadvantage.  Her stubbornness in the end gave her a greater sorrow. Queen Catherine was separated from her daughter Mary, and forbidden to see her again.

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This was a cold blow for the Queen, and for Mary, something impossible to understand and deal with. Mary was close to her teen years, and at this time, wise enough to feel the pressure, the pain, the despair and the sadness of being separated from her mother and father, and from the life she knew and loved.  She still had her own court, her beautiful home in Ludlow, but the walls were cold, the air dense and the scenery turned gray without the light and joy she had before.  For the first time she was alone. Her health deteriorated sometimes. She suffered from pains in her stomach, and to add more damage to her health, she forced herself to fast and avoid eating sometimes for more than a day when she was deep in her prayers. Like her mother, Mary began to seek for answers and for comfort in her faith.

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Sadly for the young Princess Mary, things went from bad to worse.  After long years of bravery and determination, her mother, the Queen, lost the battle against Anne Boleyn.  The King banished his once Queen of Hearts from court, and from his life, and then placed the Crown upon the proud and beautiful Lady Anne.  This marked the end of all hopes for Catherine and her daughter.  Many times, the now Dowager Duchess of Wales asked to see her daughter, and her maternal wishes were denied cruelly over and over.  For Mary, the separation was unbearable. The only connection she had with her mother was the Spanish Ambassador, Eustace Chapuys, who visited her in Ludlow from time to time, and told her news about her.  It is believed by many historians, and is also my personal point of view, that Mary’s heart started to change at this point.  Being separated from her mother, and from the life she knew and cherished in such a hard way, is difficult to endure.  Mary developed a huge and immeasurable hate towards Anne Boleyn. For Mary, she was the only cause of all her misery and her mother’s.  This hate towards Anne and towards all related to her grew and grew every single day.  Mary never recognized Anne as Queen of England, and when she was forced to make the submission to that fact by the King’s invoices, her only reply was:  “I recognize no Queen of England, except my mother, and I will not accept a Queen of England, except my mother”.   The proud princess had no idea of the high cost of the stubbornness.

For a time, after the marriage of the King with Anne Boleyn, the royal status of Princess Mary remained untouched. She was still the King’s heir, even when Anne was already pregnant, and showing her condition. However, in September 7, 1533, all changed.  They were expecting a son, but Anne delivered a healthy baby girl. This was not too much of a bless for King Henry but indeed he was hopeful, happy and proud enough to give her the status of Princess of England, and take all the privileges of Mary and passed them on to her.  Elizabeth was now the only heir of Henry the VIII, and Mary… by default, was a bastard.

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With the birth of Elizabeth, the entire world of Mary crashed down.  Separated from her mother, unrecognized by the father that once called her the “Pearl of his world”, she was now reduced to a simple lady in waiting to her own sister.  Mary had to suffer in silence. She was forced to obey the King and forget that he was her father. She was forced to forget that she was a princess, and simply act like if her rank and the marriage of her parents never existed. Now she had to serve in the household of her half sister as a maid.  And to make things worst, her feelings towards Anne Boleyn were dark, and they grew bitter day after day.  But if only Anne and Mary met each other in good terms  and positive circumstances, they would had been great friends, and this is why:

anne_boleyn_and_mary_tudor_by_lucrecia_89

Mary Tudor and Anne Boleyn had many things in common, even if you can not believe this. Mary Tudor was a fan of fashion as well as Anne, not in the same levels but both adored expensive gowns, jewels and good taste in their wardrobes.  Both Anne and Mary were highly educated, and their passions for religious matters were detonators in their lives, perhaps not in the same dimensions, but religion was something deeply important for them.  Anne was determined, stubborn, gentle when it was needed, and strong as a wild hurricane when the occasion called for it. Well, Mary was the same. The difference is… that for Mary things were different, and the major part of her courage was diminished by threats, bad treatment and neglecting.  Anne Boleyn and Mary Tudor were both great examples of talent, charisma and dominion of the court. Anne was like that until her last day on earth, but Mary lost that charm early in her youth.  Physically, they stood on their own grounds.  Anne Boleyn was not the normal standard of the English girl type. She was not pale as was the rule of the time. Her skin was olive tanned, her eyes dark brown and her hair as black as raven’s wings. That attribute gave Wolsey the muse to call her the Dark Crow. (Of course he had his own personal reasons to compare her with that mysterious and sometimes treacherous black bird).  Anne Boleyn was not the most beautiful woman in England, but in fact, she had a charm, a talent of seduction and lovely exotic looks that made a King move the world just to be with her.  Mary Tudor on the other hand, was also different, perhaps not a seductress like Anne Boleyn, but beautiful in her own way.  There are many descriptions of Mary, mostly in her days as Queen of England. In her youth; she had a gentle, sweet, delicate and soft presence, not a total beauty but pretty to the eyes.  She was short of stature, with an oval face and light brown hair. She did not look like her mother and father, and she had her own features, related more to her ancestors in Spain rather than her English ancestors.   Too much in common between these two women, and yet, born to be enemies.

To Mary, Anne Boleyn was the personification of all that is evil an unholy.  In her eyes she was the cause of her mother’s downfall, and the main reason for her father’s neglecting towards her.  To Queen Anne, Mary was a burden difficult to bear. Even when she managed to keep the King’s feelings towards his eldest daughter cold, she knew she was a breathing threat to her safety as Queen of England.  Blood is blood, and she knew the King was a man of changeable character. She was between two options, make peace with her or in time… make her the most hated person for King Henry the VIII.   There were rumors, many of them created by Eustace Chapuys and other enemies of the Boleyn clan, that the Queen wanted Mary and her mother dead, and that she was already plotting against their lives.  There are not proofs of this. Even when in times when the Queen was under the influence of too much wine or bad moods, she made open declarations of her desires to get rid of them… and her plans to order their executions if the King went away long enough to make her regent in his absence.  Anne had only one scary prophecy on her mind, one she openly discussed with her closest allies: “Mary is my death, and I am hers”.   This was more an expression of fear, rather than hate in the side of Anne, the only thing she needed to take that fear away… was a son.

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Queen Anne disliked Mary beyond measure but, she tried to make peace with her.  She knew it was better to take this chance rather that keep the distance, this new state of mind came of course because she was not the mother of a Prince yet, and to keep the King pleased was of course a better way to conquer more grounds at court, earn allies and fix her status at court, she wanted to be loved by all…not by only some.  In March 1534, Anne sent for Lady Mary to come see her while she was visiting her daughter Princess Elizabeth. The Queen offered to invite her back to the English Court and also a reconciliation pact with her father King Henry VIII if she would just accept their marriage and acknowledge her as the Queen of England.  Lady Mary promptly responded with a cruel insult, “I know no Queen in England but my mother. But if you, Madam, as my father’s mistress, will intercede for me with him, I should be grateful.” Anne did not lose her temper with Lady Mary as she pointed out the absurdity of the request and repeated her offer to Lady Mary in a less gentle tone, but still soft enough to be taken in good will. But Mary refused to answer Anne, she just simply turned her back on her and leave, Queen Anne was in rage.

The Queen found the courage to forget the girl’s attitude, and once again tried to build a peaceful relationship with her.  There is another encounter recorded between the Queen and her stepdaughter, this time in Eltham Palace’s Chapel. An attendant told Anne that Lady Mary had acknowledged her as the Queen of England by curtsying to her. Anne had not been able to see it and she came to be embarrassed at not noticing that Lady Mary had acknowledged her as the Queen of England. She was deeply pleased that Lady Mary had acknowledged her as the Queen of England and ended up sending a message to her where she as the Queen greeted her warmly and to apologize for not seeing her curtsy towards her and that she desired that “this may be the entrance of friendly correspondence”. The Lady Mary replied that it was impossible for the queen to have been there for my mother was not; I kneeled yes, but for the altar”.  This was the last time Anne tried to make peace with Mary.  The Queen was so furious, that in private as well as in public, she started to make horrible remarks against the Lady Mary.  She called her names, and made fun of her strict fashion. She said that she would make Mary her lady in waiting, and then she would marry her to some varlet.  She threatened to curb “her proud Spanish blood”, but again, the Queen was just ranting to express her frustrations with Lady Mary and there is no evidence to suggest she carried out any of her threats against Lady Mary.  However, Queen Anne did tell her aunt Lady Anne Shelton who was in charge of Lady Mary’s care to starve her if she continued to eat a large breakfast in order to avoid having to eat dinner in the Great Hall and pleading illness to have supper brought to her chamber.  Queen Anne also proclaimed that she should box Lady Mary’s ears as “the cursed bastard she was” if she tried to use the banned title of princess for herself. Queen Anne ended up having Mary surrender her jewels to her, for she felt they must now adorn Princess Elizabeth for she was now the king’s lawful heiress to the throne of England, until the time that she had a brother.

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All this slowly twisted Mary’s soul. She felt abused and worst of all, alone.  And to add more bitterness, the Spanish Ambassador, Eustace Chapuys made sure that the hate that Mary felt for Anne were stronger every day. His own despise for Anne was greater than his conscience. He had no idea of the harm he was inflicting in the already torture heart of the young girl.  Chapuys, who openly did not accept Anne for who she was, cared nothing for her, and despised her and disgustedly ended up referring to her in his official communications as “the concubine” and that “whore” or with polite disdain “The Lady” and Princess Elizabeth as “the brat” or “the little bastard”, told Lady Mary that Anne was planning to have her murdered.  It was a terrible lie, but one that Lady Mary, in her hysterical state, was inclined to believe. She refused to go when word came that Princess Elizabeth’s household was moving from Hatfield to The More, as she believed that she would be taken and quietly murdered. This led to the royal guards have to actually seize and throw her into her litter. Her distress from this would have naturally made her ill.

This cruel treatment not only increased Lady Mary’s hate towards Queen Anne, but is also made her feel almost nothing for her half sister.  Mary barely paid attention to her, and was cold and behaved like a stone when she was around the little princess. So much despise towards an innocent child, was not a good sign at all.  Later in time, Catherine of Aragon died, to Mary’s sorrow, she had no chance to neither say goodbye to her mother nor lay eyes upon her.  This left a profound scar on Mary’s heart, one that would never disappear.

But where was King Henry the VIII while his daughter was suffering so terribly? Yes, he was making no action, he was doing nothing, no towards Anne, nor even to protect Mary against his wife’s “threats”. The King did not make efforts to ease Mary’s low life style either. He gave her no money and her health was not well watch as it was before.  Only once, the King made contact with Mary after his marriage with Anne. He sent the Duke of Norfolk to Hatfield House, with a message for Mary; the King wanted her to join her sister’s ladies in waiting during a visit at White Hall Palace.  Mary responded that “the title of princess belonged to herself and no other.” Norfolk made no answer, declaring he had not come to dispute titles but to accomplish the King’s will.” When Mary was told that she would be allowed to take very few servants with her, Margaret Pole, her longtime governess and godmother, who had been in Mary’s entourage since the princess was three years old asked if she might continue to serve Mary at her own expense and pay for the whole household. Her request was refused. King Henry wanted Mary, like Katherine, to be separated from those she trusted to encourage her submission.

The King was angry at Mary. He hated her Spanish pride because that was the reminder of the nightmare he had to endure while Catherine refused to let him go.  Thanks to all the power he had now, not only as King, but as Supreme Head of the Church of England, he thought that everyone, including his “loved ones” were supposed to obey him whatever the circumstances… even if those were to face death. After this incident, the King never spoke to Mary again during  the reign of Anne.

Then, like if faith were giving Mary a taste of sweetness, the days of Anne Boleyn as Queen of England finished.  Her failure to produce a male heir, her talent to make the King burst with rage and the  sudden love between the King and the young Lady Jane Seymour, send her to an unjust and cruel death.  To Mary, this bloody event was a deliverance from all the darkness she endured while Anne lived.  After Anne’s execution, The Lady Mary sent a letter to Thomas Cromwell:

I perceived that nobody durst speak for me as long as that woman lived, which is now gone. whom I pray to our Lord, of his great mercy to forgive.”

Mary never forgave Anne for all her miseries. The hate she felt for her would live on forever. The wounds she inflicted on her were too deep to heal.  Now, her fate was again in a limbo, she just could pray for hope.

lady_mary

 

END OF PART I

 

SOURCES:

http://queenmarytudor.wordpress.com/2011/08/04/the-relationship-of-mary-and-her-parents-king-henry-viii-and-queen-catherine-of-aragon/

http://www.katelyncomments.com/2013/01/anne-boleyn-part-thirteen-relationship.html

http://queenmarytudor.wordpress.com/2011/08/13/the-relationship-between-queen-anne-boleyn-and-princess-mary/

http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/09766a.htm

http://www.luminarium.org/encyclopedia/queenmary.htm

http://tudors.wikia.com/wiki/Princess_Mary_Tudor

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_I_of_England

Justified (Poetry ~ Elizabethan Court)

February 11, 2013 in Elizabethan Court, Poetry by ADMIN: Royal Squire

The Burning of Cranmer

*

In the Church of St. Mary’s, I stand close beside her;

She weeps as her dearest Thomas calmly speaks his mind;

His recantations coerced, the lies said then are laid bare now;

Her prayers, her love, her pride, her fears, her sorrow multiplied.

Justified. The wise man of common prayers, uncommon. 

*

Confidences kept close, he risked all for the Earl’s beloved;

Promises kept always, he stepped forward, and loved with all;

Gentle and reluctant, he made his way through life committed;

Pious and steadfast, he shared the scripture as his God defined;

Justified. The wise man of common prayers, uncommon.

*

True to his dearest friendships, he pled for the King’s mercy;

While the Lords and papists cruelly undermined for the kill.

Godfather to the departed boy King and soon Virgin Regina;

He faithfully mentored us all with his gentle wisdom and mirth;

Justified. The wise man of common prayers, uncommon. 

*

Stunned, poor Margarete follows him, dragged pitfully to the fire;

“to love and to cherish, till death do us part…”, his words, her heart;

For my father, I watch horrified to lay witness as the torches light;

True to his vow, his right hand is thrust to be burned, charred and melting;

Justified. The wise man of common prayers, uncommon. 

*

The stench of his burning flesh churns inside me, death unfolding;

Tears flowing as I place my hand upon her shaking shoulder;

His spirit rises to the heavens, my Gods’ and his God’s arms awaiting;

While the bloody Queen lays barren, forever cursed to hell I made sure;

Justified. The wise man of common prayers, uncommon. 

~~~~~~ Anthea Sedena-Cromwell ~~~~~

QAB Round Table Chat With Historical Fiction Writer Christy English

October 22, 2012 in News, QAB Guest Interviews and Chats by Beth von Staats

Historical Fiction Writer Christy English

Queen Anne Boleyn Historical Writers is pleased to host an internet round table discussion with historical fiction writer Christy English, author of  To Be a Queen; A Novel of the Early Life of Eleanor of Aquitaine, The Queen’s Pawn and How to Tame a Willful Wife. Christy is joining QAB’s court administrators to discuss the remarkable lives of some of England’s early queens, whose strength and determination helped pave the way to England’s future world dominance. Today’s discussion will focus on Holy Roman Empress Matilda; Eleanor of Aquitaine, Queen of France and England; Catalina de’ Aragon, Queen of England; and Anne Boleyn, Queen of England. Welcome to QAB, Christy.

Christy English: “I am very excited to talk with the group about these strong women. I am completely obsessed by Eleanor of Aquitaine, but I have been a fan of Matilda, Anne Boleyn and Queen Elizabeth I for years. I’ve even come to admire Queen Catherine of Aragon. So this is going to be an amazing time.”

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “Christy, it really is a shame, but Empress Matilda seems all but forgotten in English history, despite her huge impact. What would you like to share with QAB readers about this remarkable woman?”

Christy English: “Matilda, or Empress Maude, as she was also known, was the rightful heir to the English throne. When her father Henry I died, she was not in England but in her holdings in France. She did not rush to London to be crowned, and her usurping cousin, Stephen leaped in to fill the gap.”

Mary Rose Tudor Uk Z: “Even though he swore to uphold Matilda’s claim to the throne.”

Empress Matilda (Maude)

Christy English: “Can you tell I am no fan of Stephen’s? I love the historical novel about that time period by Sharon Kay Penman, When Christ and His Saints Slept. The war between Matilda and Stephen raged for decades, and the English peasants were caught between them like wheat between mill stones. Just bloody awful…literally. Ah yes, Stephen did take an oath, but as was mentioned in the BBC She Wolves documentary by historian Helen Canter, he probably didn’t think anyone would hold him to it. During Eleanor’s life, some churchmen suggested that an oath to a woman held no power. God would give you a do over, so to speak.”

Mary Rose Tudor Uk Z: “This was also shown beautifully is Pillars of the Earth.

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “Who would hold any man to an oath of a female monarch?”

Christy English: “Elizabeth and her sister Mary were the first women who really managed to hold men in their sway. I make it sound so nefarious. Elizabeth I just wanted to rule as a prince as she called it, and she pulled it off.”

Mary I (left), Elizabeth I (right)

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “Yes, she was the ultimate CEO, also surrounding herself with an excellent group of privy counselors whom she remained loyal to.”

Mary Rose Tudor Uk Z: “Why do you think the people accepted Mary?”

Christy English: “I think they were tired of the new religion and wanted their church back. An over simplification, no doubt. And she was the daughter of a queen and king, both from the Spanish line and the English. Though I wonder if a peasant or burgher would really care about that?”

Mary Rose Tudor Uk Z: “Are we off topic?” <laughs>

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “Yes we are.” <laughs> Back to King Stephen and Empress Matilda now. Did they jockey for power to gain control of the crown?”

Christy English: “They fought tooth and nail, killing a lot of people in the process. It took almost two decades of civil war before Stephen surrendered and accepted Matilda’s son, Henry, as his heir.”

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “There was only one Stephen for a reason. How did a woman manage to lead an army of supporters for nearly 20 years in 12th century England?”

Christy English: “She had right on her side, for one thing, and she was a powerful woman with a powerful husband. She had supporters as far away as Aquitaine. Eleanor of Aquitaine’s father, Duke William X, fought to help her hold onto Normandy for example. There were some men who chose not to break their oaths to her.”

Mary Rose Tudor Uk Z: “Christy, if Matilda was allowed to rule, what kind of queen would she have made?”

Christy English: “I suppose there is no way to know what kind of queen Matilda would have made. From her bid to the throne we can see that she was ruthless, that she would trample over villages and crops to fight a battle to win territory. This is no different from any man during her time, but I do wonder if she would have been so fond of establishing a rule of law, the king’s peace, as her son Henry II was.”

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “Remarkable, what was her influence if any on her daughter-in-law Eleanor of Aquitaine?”

Christy English: “Eleanor of Aquitaine, my hero, became Queen of England in 1154. I often wonder if anyone other than her father ever had influence over Eleanor. To me, she seems like a woman who lived by her own rules. That said I like to think that she and Matilda got along once Henry married her. No doubt they saw the world in much the same way, and shared the same goal: of keeping Henry II in power. As long as he stayed in power, so did they. Both women served as Regent for him in his holdings on the Continent from time to time when he had to be in England, but as far as I know, Eleanor was the only one to rule for him in England when he was dealing with his barons in Normandy and Anjou. Henry and Eleanor had a very strong political marriage for the first ten years at least.”

Eleanor of Aquitaine

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “Excellent point. He certainly had the support of two very strong and influential women.”

Mary Rose Tudor Uk Z: “Maude reminds me a bit of Margaret Beaufort. They both secured the throne for their sons.

Christy English: “So true! They were a lot alike. Two fabulous women!”

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “Margaret Beaufort… I would never mess with her. <laughs> Now back to Matilda, Henry and Eleanor…”

Margaret Beaufort

Mary Rose Tudor Uk Z: “What do you think Eleanor thought of Matilda?”

Christy English: “There is no way to know for certain, but I think the two women worked well together. They were a lot a like, but that is not always a bad thing. They both served as regent for Henry II on the continent at different times, though Eleanor was the only one to serve as Regent for him in England. But as Henry in my novel at least is fond of saying, there can be only one king. I think Matilda understood this, but Eleanor never truly accepted it. She always wanted power of her own even while they were married. She did not really gain that power until her favorite son left her as Regent when he went to the Holy Land on the Third Crusade.”

Mary Rose Tudor Uk Z: “I have a hard time seeing Eleanor let Maude dictate to her.”

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “Well fortunately Maude did not live forever, and Eleanor lived a long life. Do tell us Christy, was Eleanor effective as England’s regent? After all, she was basically queen in all but name for both her husband and her son at different times.”

Christy English: “I believe Eleanor was tired of England after spending 15 years under lock and key there for rebelling against her husband. She did find England useful when it came time to raise the ransom for Richard I’s release from a German prison. Richard got kidnapped by one of his ‘brother kings’ on his way back from the Third Crusade.”

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “Did she not rule while regent as Cataline De’Aragon did while Henry VIII left England to fight in battle? Or did she basically hold things in status while her son was out of the country?”

Christy English: “As far as I know, she was officially Regent while her son was away.”

Mary Rose Tudor Uk Z: <speaking of Eleanor’s first husband King Louis VII of France> “Christy, why do you feel Eleanor abhorred Louis so much?”

Christy English: “I don’t think Eleanor hated Louis. I think she wanted to love him in the beginning, or at least to have a working political marriage, But the problem was Louis really was more monk than man, and he did not want to go to bed with her. It took eight years and an alliance between Abbot Suger and Bernard de Clairvaux to get him into bed with her so that she could get pregnant with their first daughter. The second daughter did not come until the Pope himself put them to bed together when they were in Roam on their way back from the Second Crusade. Amazing! You really can’t make this stuff up… it’s just too wild. Truth really is stranger than fiction.”

King Louis VII of France

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “Amazing. In an age where heirs were everything, the man was a monk. Truth is always stranger than fiction, which makes historical fiction such a wonderful genre.”

Christy English: “Louis was raised to be a monk. Only when his older brother was killed was he brought out of the church school and made to be heir to the throne. I have always felt sorry for him. I have a theory that Louis VII was a good man, but as Henry II says in The Queen’s Pawn, a good man rarely makes a good king.”

King Henry II of England

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “True. George VI is the only one I can think of, and he was just a constitutional monarch with no real power.”

Mary Rose Tudor Uk Z: “T’is better to be feared than loved.”

Christy English: “Henry II would absolutely agree with that.”

Mary Rose Tudor Uk Z: “Machiavelli would have loved Henry II.”

Christy English: <laughs> “I tend to put words in Henry’s mouth, since I write fiction about him, but my sense is that he was politically savvy while also wanting to maintain a rule of law. He never wanted to return to the times of civil war thatEngland has seen when his mother was trying to take back the throne. If you’ll notice, Henry has hijacked this conversation that is supposed to be about Eleanor and Matilda. <laughs> I wonder if Eleanor and Anne Boleyn would have liked each other.”

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “I predict a cat fight. <laughs> Anne Boleyn did not shine a candle to Eleanor. I say that with every respect of Anne, but come on.”

Mary Rose Tudor Uk Z: “I agree. I think Catherine of Aragon was more like Eleanor and Matilda. Look how Catherine defeated King James VI.”

Christy English: “I suppose it is hard to include Anne Boleyn in a discussion of women born to rule. She just didn’t have the advantages of being raised in a royal court. She served in France as a courtier, but being a courtier is very different from a ruling queen. Of course with Henry VIII on the throne, a queen had trouble keeping her head, much less ruling.

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “Let’s turn to Catalina De’Aragon. She was an amazing queen consort. Princess Mary Rose and Christy, please share your thoughts.”

Catalina de’ Aragon

Christy English:  “Touching on the subject of Catherine of Aragon, I love the mention you <Mary Rose> make of her defeat of James VI in battle. Of course, she had fighting men to wage this war for her, but she was the ruler, the regent for Henry VIII at that time. Truly an amazing woman. ”

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “Oh yes, the daughter of Isabella she surely showed plain.”

Mary Rose Tudor Uk Z: “She was her mother’s daughter, no doubt. Catherine always fought for England to ally herself with Spain. She knew how to handle Henry back then.”

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “Catalina was a remarkable woman and a survivor.”

Christy English: “Catalina did handle Henry VIII well early on. And she had a lot of help from Wolsey, at least for most of her marriage. I love how Catalina held her ground and made it possible for Mary to take the throne one day. She never blinked and never backed down. Isabella would have been proud, though Isabella also might have said, “Why don’t you have someone poison that Anne Boleyn?” <laughs>

Mary Rose Tudor Uk Z: “How tragic that she never saw Mary again.”

Christy English: “That really breaks my heart. It amazes me how truly hard hearted Henry VIII could be. Self-centered I suppose.”

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “Well, a male heir was essential in the minds of the day. No one believed a woman could rule in her own right. Catalina was an outstanding queen consort, and her ability to survive under both Henry VII and Henry VIII was remarkable.”

Christy English: “She really did an amazing job of hanging on during the worst of circumstances. The way she survived Henry VII was truly impressive, and she was a young woman then – alone in a hostile country and friendless.”

Mary Rose Tudor Uk Z: “Can you imagine if Henry VII married her?”

Christy English: “It would have been interesting. She would have been taken off the table of history altogether, truly a dowager queen.”

Mary Rose Tudor Uk Z: “Yes, think of poor Mary Rose.”

Anne Boleyn

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “Well she won over Henry VIII, and had she born him a living son, Anne Boleyn would never have come to power.”

Mary Rose Tudor Uk Z: “Henry would have easily gotten his way if Charles V did not invade Rome.”

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “Maybe, maybe not. In my mind, Anne was the result of her father and Norfolk’s ambition.”

Mary Rose Tudor Uk Z: “Look at Louis XII and Joan. What man would in his right mind pursue Anne knowing the king wanted her? Did Anne have a choice at all?”

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “No she did not. Her success came in holding Henry off for seven years. That took some doing, no doubt.”

Christy English: “That is an interesting question. I guess we’ll never know the answer. Was Anne Boleyn a pawn? Or was she a political animal? Or a pawn who decided to get in the game and make her own plays?”

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “Great discussion point. I believe she was both pawn and political animal. She wanted the crown.”

Christy English: “I think so too. I think she made the best of a bad situation, but it got away from her.”

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “And she did hold influence over Henry, which helped the rise of both Cromwell and Cranmer. Cromwell may have rose without her. Cranmer clearly would not have.”

Mary Rose Tudor Uk Z: “Henry took her youth and the ability to marry another. Maybe she saw the crown as her right.”

Christy English: “Once more, her power depended on having a son, the same as Catherine of Aragon, the same as Eleanor of Aquitaine when she was in France. But you make a great point, Anne did a great deal for the Reformation in England.

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “Yes, agreed. The ability to have a son was everything. Regarding the reformation, her contribution was just enough to get into power those who did <a great deal>.”

Christy English: “Maybe we should end on that note?”

Elizabeth, Gloriana: “Christy, we both would like thank your for your generous time in discussing some of England’s remarkable early queens with us. Before you leave us, please do tell our members about your new novel How to Tame a Willful Wife which will be released in the United States on November 6th.”

Christy English: “Ah yes…what does the re-telling of a Shakespearean comedy have to do with Eleanor of Aquitaine? Like Katherine in The Taming of the Shrew and a bit like Eleanor herself, my heroine Caroline Montague is a woman to be reckoned with. She rides astride her war horse Hercules, fences, throws knives, and can best any man she has ever met with a bow and arrow. When she meets the handsome and domineering Anthony Carrington, the man her father has chosen for her to marry, she does not shirk her duty. She marries him, but she refuses to obey him. Anthony, a man of strength, is certain that he can tame her and make her a biddable, demure bride. They have a lively battle of wits and wills even as they indulge in their attraction for each other. The question that remains is: who is taming whom? Thank you for indulging me with mentioning the new book. I do love our discussion. Your review copy went in the mail yesterday so I hope you get it soon. I am so excited to be a part of your site.”

TO PRE-ORDER YOUR COPY OF HOW TO TAME A WILLFUL WIFE, CLICK ON THIS LINK. http://www.amazon.com/Tame-Willful-Wife-Christy-English/dp/1402270453/ref=la_B002RF8Q52_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1338555028&sr=1-3

WATCH FOR QAB’S REVIEW OF THE BOOK SOON!!

 

 

 

The Fifth Son

September 6, 2012 in Beth von Staats (REVELATION), Elizabethan Court, Historical Fiction by Beth von Staats

I pause to reflect before I scratch the worst of news to my father onto parchment. My father, yes he is a mad man. As I settle here in Lynn, my forces depleting with men deserting in favor of the Princess Mary, who now proclaims herself Queen of England, I resign myself to the inevitable. Jane Dudley, imposed wife of my drunkard brother Guilford, will lose the crown thrust so unwillingly upon her head, and the heretic will reign. I look out at my depleted forces, now scurrying to Farmlingham Castle where Mary presides, disgusted. With no backbone to dispute it, I did my power hungry father’s bidding, leading men to arrest the true heir to the throne. What was I thinking? Did I really believe Northumberland could reign as king through the puppets of Jane and Guilford? Yes, I suppose I did. My father, he is a force in his own right — a brave knight, a master of manipulation, a demigod, I do swear. I thought no one could upend him, especially the sickly virgin old maid daughter of a forsaken Spanish queen. Though my father and brothers do not yet know it, we are all dead men, following my grandfather to the block. Even Princess Elizabeth, also usurped in this folly, will be unable to save us. And even if she could, why should she? After all, we betrayed her – betrayed her birthright, her friendship, her trust.

Until this very day, I was a blessed man. Fifth son of a Duke, favor and prestige is not supposed to follow me, but God looked kindly upon me anyway. Raised among royalty, educated by the masters, friends with the boy king and his beautiful Protestant sister, I wanted for nothing. When not in study, falconing, hunting, and riding horse filled my days. With no heritance coming and right poor future prospects, I lived like a prince, the rightly proud son of a Duke that was soon Lord Protector and king in all but name. Then I was matched to Amy Robsart, daughter of a knight in Syderstone, with no brothers, heiress of his Norfolk lands and estate. Our wedding grand, even King Edward and Princess Elizabeth attended. Love matters not. The marriage match is envious, and I am glad to have it. At 20 years old, I am a member of the Privy Council, member of the House of Commons, and knight with lands in Norfolk, Northamptonshire and Leicestershire – a great fortune bestowed to a 5th son, a great fortune bestowed to any son.

With Princess Mary, or should I say Queen Mary, rallying support far and wide, disaster lies on the horizon. My father will fall hard, and like the deck of cards beneath him, we all will follow. Yet, he knows not. While I watch events unfold around me, the Duke of Northumberland is spinning his web, pushing his agenda, pressuring that poor girl Jane to do his bidding, to rule as he would if the crown were his. As my father struts with his chest puffed full of the power of the moment, along with Henry Grey and Thomas Cranmer who abet him, the petite virgin waif all discounted, all shunned, all mocked, all ignored, all disdained, all denied for these many years, prepares to be England’s first ruling Queen. Norfolk, that bastard, will rejoice as she reunites this blessed realm with the Bishop of Rome. Spain, that heathen land, will rejoice as she reunites with her blood relatives against all English pride. God, I pray you protect and hold this blessed land in your loving hands, and may You see your way to ultimately lay St. Edward’s crown on the woman most able and willing to reign true to you, my beloved Elizabeth.

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~~The Cruel Plot~~

August 17, 2012 in Elizabethan Court by ADMIN: Royal Squire

I have presently been warned of a plot to seize me and keep me as a captive. My blood boils at the thought. I have been dishonoured yet again. I will no longer speak of the shame that my own father brought on my mother. I will not speak anymore of that mistreatment. I have grown and have cast it aside. I no longer wish to dwell on my cruel past. My time of reckoning shall occur and I shall get it. It seems as my heavenly father did not seem to want me to be Queen yet. However, I know I shall prevail. My fool brother did not want me in the line of succession and had sworn to write me out of it. He wanted to keep Elizabeth and not me. His eyes and thoughts are ruled by Satan. He knows not right from wrong. I should be Queen and I should rule as God would want me to.  Elizabeth is a darling sister and I do feel for her cruel shame as well. Her mother, a witch and harlot, should never have been her mother. I hope, in her heart, Elizabeth has disowned the concubine, but I do feel her pain. We two sisters mean nothing in this world. We only mean something when we have power and I believe I should have the power. I believe that I should rule in the rightful place. I was summoned to visit my poor brother. He was very young and dying, but I was warned. The heretics want Lady Jane Grey to rule in my stead. This sickens me. She is a young girl and knows nothing of ruling. She will fail and I will built support.  I have fled to an area far away, where I own many estates. I shall hide here until I have enough support. Mark my words there are already whispers of my great support. England is still loyal, deep in their hearts, to my mother and I. They are also fiercely loyal to my father and I am my father’s daughter. I am a Tudor. Tudors must rule the throne and our heirs must rule the throne. I must inform the council that I intend to be Queen. I must inform them that I shall not go away forever. This faux Queen shall not rule and I shall take my rightful place. Mark my words. With God’s help, it will be achieved!!!

 

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