Rebel Princess: Mary Rose Tudor

Mary Tudor Queen of France

Mary, the baby of the Tudor Dynasty, was born on the 18thMarch 1496 at Richmond Palace.  She being the youngest child of King Henry VII and Elizabeth of York.

As a child, she was close to her brother, Henry, the future King Henry VIII.  She loved life, becoming the star of court, enjoying dancing and parties.

In 1507, the eleven-year-old Princess Mary was betrothed in an arranged marriage with the young Charles of Castile, the future Holy Roman Emperor.  Charles being the nephew of Mary’s sister-in-law, Catherine of Aragon. Changes in political alliances between European powers, meant the planned wedding of May 1514, was off.

Mary breathed a sigh of relief, not wanting to marry one, four years her junior.

On the 21stApril 1509, Henry VII her father dies, and her brother Henry becomes King Henry VIII of England.

Mary had developed a crush for the charming and attractive Charles Brandon, her brother’s best friend. In 1514, the nineteen-year-old princess had developed romantic feelings for Charles.

Cardinal Wolsey negotiated a peace treaty with France, which required Mary would marry King Louis XII of France.  An unhappy Mary, demanded of her brother, once the marriage was over, she would be free to marry one of her choice.

Henry loved his sister, and reluctantly agreed to her demands without question.

On the 9thOctober 1514, Mary married Louis XII of France, acquiring the title Queen Mary of France.  Her marriage was short lived, for Louis died on the 1stJanuary 1515.

Charles Brandon, the Duke of Suffolk married Mary Tudor, the Queen Dowager of France, secretly at the Palais de Cluny in France, much to the annoyance of Mary’s brother; King Henry VIII. On the 15thMay 1515, Mary and Charles were publicly married in a family service, and they had four children:

Henry Brandon           (1516-1522)

Frances Brandon       (1517-1559)

Eleanor Brandon        (1519-1547)

Henry Brandon           (1523-1534)

On the 25thJune 1533, Mary died at Westhorpe Hall in Suffolk.  The funeral took place on the 20thJuly 1533, when she was interred at Abbey Church, Bury St.Edmunds.

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