On this day in 1540 King Henry VIII married Anne of Cleves.
Anyone who can remember their primary school history lessons should remember that Anne of Cleves was Henry VIII’s fourth wife. As the rhyme goes, ‘Divorced, Beheaded, Died. Divorced, Beheaded, Survived.’ This means that Anne of Cleves was divorced from Henry VIII, only seven short months after they were married.
Henry VIII had doubts about the marriage but went ahead with it anyway. However, he never consummated the marriage and when questioned about the possibility of his impotence, he made it clear to his physician that this was not case (in other words, he told his Doctor that he was having wet dreams – oh my!)
Anne of Cleves consented to the annulment which took place on the 9th July 1940. After the annulment, she was well looked after. She received the title of the King’s Beloved Sister and was given a generous settlement.
Anne of Cleves outlived the King and all his wives, living long enough to see the coronation of Queen Mary I.