Hey, this is Heather from the Renaissance English History Podcast, and this is your Tudor Minute for September 20.
Today in 1486 Arthur, Prince of Wales, was born to Elizabeth of York in Winchester, eight months after her marriage to Henry Tudor, Henry VII. Arthur was the fulfillment of his parents’ uniting the houses of Lancaster and York after the Wars of the Roses, and was named after the legendary King Arthur. His father even chose his birth place, Winchester, because of its association with King Arthur.
He was invested with the title Prince of Wales before he was five, and the marriage negotiations between England and Spain started when he was still two. When he was eleven he was formally betrothed to Catherine of Aragon, a marriage that was designed to cement an alliance between England and Spain against France. Shortly after their marriage in 1501, the couple moved to Ludlow, where Arthur died six months later. What did, or didn’t happen between the couple during that six month period became the foundation of Henry VIII’s attempt to divorce Catherine of Aragon 25 years later.
After his parents heard of Arthur’s death, they were beside themselves with grief, but also knew they should try for another son to ensure the smooth succession, should anything happen to Henry. Elizabeth of York, Arthur’s mother, fell pregnant quite quickly, and the following year she gave birth. Tragically, both she and her baby died, and Henry VII was left having lost his son, and his wife and baby daughter in a year. It was a series of losses from which many say he would never fully recover.
That’s your Tudor Minute for today. Remember you can dive deeper into life in 16th century England through the Renaissance English History Podcast at englandcast.com.
Episode 102: Education in Tudor England