Anne Boleyn's Brood

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by Kynan, Dec 18, 2013.

  1. Kynan Well-Known Member

    Oct 7, 2013

    7th September, 1533: Birth of the Princess Elizabeth Tudor

    1534: Eustace Chapuys writes to Emperor Charles V on the 28th March reporting that Anne is rumoured to be pregnant again. This story circulates for a while; with a letter from George Taylor to Lady Lisle dated the 27th April 1534, reading:

    “The Queen hath a goodly belly, praying our Lord to send us a prince”

    Being used as evidence, though there is chatter that this letter was actually a hoax, and that the story was concocted by Anne herself to save face. But there are also reports that she really is pregnant, with her dresses being brought out regularly and apples being brought to her at odd times of the day. But more allegations surface that she is faking this to keep King Henry from tiring of her. In July, Anne’s brother, Lord Rochford, was sent on a diplomatic mission to France to ask for the rescheduling of a meeting between Henry VIII and Francis I because of Anne’s ‘health: “being of a delicate state; she could not cross the sea with the King”. Chapuys uses this letter to beck up the rumour she is pregnant. Finally, it was announced that the queen is pregnant, with the reason for the delay in this proclamation being:

    “the quene’s private wishes”

    With many suspecting that she was unsure of her ability to keep the babe. Chapuys wrote on the 19th August 1534:

    “… and on the Concubine, she is far with child, and seems of unfortunately good health…”

    On the 27th October, 1534, Queen Anne Boleyn went into labour, which lasted for a long 27 hours, in which the King waited in a room adjacent to the birthing quarters. Finally, on the 28th of October, the triumphant Queen emerged victorious. She had given birth to not just one heir, but also a second daughter. Healthy and handsome, the royal children were named Henry and Anne Tudor. And with that, the story of Anne’s brood began.

    # I know I should be working on the Disney Renaissance Timeline and that I said that I would be keeping away until early January, but the idea for this just came to be and I thought it would be an interesting timeline. Also, this will be the structure for a story that I'm going to attempt to write at a later date, so could everyone please help me keep this realistic, and when I have gotten to the point I am planning on, please help me in the actualy writing process. Thank you :)
  2. Kynan Well-Known Member

    Oct 7, 2013
    To get people interested, here are some pictures from this timeline that may interest you.


    Detail of a prortrait of young Princess Elizabeth Tudor.


    Detail of the baby Princess Anne Tudor, from the Hans Holbien the Younger painting 'A Portraite of the Royal Family'.


    Detail of a portrait of Henry Tudor, Prince of Wales.
  3. Kynan Well-Known Member

    Oct 7, 2013
    1535: During this year, with her three young children in play, Queen Anne Boleyn joined her husband in a trip to meet with the King of France, who they had had to reschedule due to her pregnancy. This meeting was very much a publicity stunt, in the way it was used to try and scare that very anti-Anne Charles V into accepting Anne as Queen of England. And though he announced that he would never accept the unlawful marriage of Henry and his ‘Concubine’, he did privately wonder about the truth of the matter, as they now had a brood of children that they were quickly auctioning off, at least the girls. At this meeting, Francis I was supposed to have said:

    “…and if I only had a younger daughter, then she could marry your son and we could unite as friends across the channel…”

    To which Anne supposedly quipped:

    “…and but, our daughter may marry your son Charles, or has the young boy been betrothed…”

    And with that slight quip, the marriage talks began in earnest.

    During this stay, Anne supposedly fell pregnant. There were rumours that it began as early as mid-April, at the beginning of the meeting. But all that is known is that she was sent back to England very quickly in mid-June and when she get back she was immediately given apples. As with the previous pregnancy, she did not announce she was pregnant during the early months, which turned out to be a good choice. During the night of 9th of August, a terrible event occurred that ended with a miscarriage. A few days prior, an unknown person had gone into the chambers of the ailing Catherine of Aragon, dowager Princess of Wales and stabbed her repeatedly. In the wake of this, the Lady Mary Tudor had rushed in to where Queen Anne was meeting with her daughter, Princess Elizabeth, and confronted her about the event. Though Mary was sure of Anne’s guilt, she did not mean to shock her enough so she would go into a miscarriage. In an act that, according to a nearby maid:
    “…reeked of a mixture of guilte and kindness…”

    Mary quickly helped Anne off the floor onto which she had collapsed, and then sent the watching maid to get help. The doctor came about an hour later, having been at a nearby residence, but it was too late. Anne had lost twin boys. This came a surprise when Henry returned in late August, as he had expected to return to a happy, pregnant wife. He is supposed to have comforted her, but the exact words he said are unknown. Later that month; when he started to punish Mary for causing the miscarriage, beginning with a public humiliation, the court was shocked when the still seemingly weak Anne Boleyn rushed in to defend the girl. She was to have stood in front of her and said:

    “…do not blame this girl for her confusion at the deathe of her mother, would you not blame an enemy in that time yourself? Though she is not a lawful child of yours, she is still your blood…”

    And so on, ending with Mary apparently crying in the centre of the court, Henry fuming but thoughtful and Anne triumphant in her defence of the girl.

    The events of this time were recorded by Anne Boleyn’s brother George Boleyn, 2nd Viscount Rochford. Around this time, the nobleman began his most notable venture, as an impartial record keeper of the history of the history of England.

    The year ended with new rumours of a possible pregnancy the completion of a royal family portrait, as well as talks of a marriage between Mary Tudor and Francis of France; a match that actually had been dropped years ago, but was brought up again, with added elements of her legitimacy.
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2013
  4. Peger Member

    Oct 23, 2005
    That last update seems a bit unrealistic given Anne & Mary's personalities and the relationship the two had. Otherwise very interesting, though, I love Tudor timelines.
  5. Kynan Well-Known Member

    Oct 7, 2013

    Detail of the first official portrait of Henry Tudor, Prince of Wales (1535)


    Portrait of the Lady Mary Tudor (1535)


    Sketch of Queen Anne Boleyn during her pregnancy -never completed due to the queen disliking it- (1534)


    Sketch done of the Princess Anne Tudor - never completed -
  6. Kynan Well-Known Member

    Oct 7, 2013
    1) I was going on Mary's human decency, but I may have gone a bit far. Thanks :)

    2) Thank you, I love them too! :D
  7. This looks like a good start on what is, obviously, a very fruitful POD. One question: did the Boleyns have a history of twinning? I ask because human twinning is relatively anomalous, and for Anne to bear two sets of twins suggests to me that there would likely be a family history.

    Otherwise, keep up the good work!
  8. Kynan Well-Known Member

    Oct 7, 2013
    1) The twinning thing is based off a rumour that her first miscarriage was twins, but then again there is not much known about it. Then, I decided that if she was able to do it once, it was entirely possible to do it again.

    2) Thank you :)
  9. mcdnab Well-Known Member

    Jan 2, 2009
    Whilst Anne remains Queen Consort and is producing heirs then Mary Tudor's position remains precarious - in the eyes of much of Europe particularly in the Empire and Spain then Henry and Anne's marriage remains invalid and Mary remains the King's legitimate heir.
    But there is little anyone can really do about it.

    Anne's relationship with Mary was appalling with poor behaviour on both sides - she was extremely relutant to defend her and certainly in the early days of her marriage .
    Even with the birth of a male heir she will remain concerned that if Henry were to die her position is precarious and many might support the teenaged catholic Mary over the infant Prince of Wales.

    Henry's relationship was not much better given Mary's refusal to recognise the Boleyn marriage and her refusal to submit to her father's will.

    I would think any scenario where Anne survives as Queen and is producing male issue means Mary remains effectively a prisoner of her father's will - whilst she will be kept in relative comfort she will remain in the household of her much younger half sisters - Elizabeth and Anne - and having little in the way of freedom.

    With no multiple marriages for her father the chance of a kinder stepmother less worried about the potential political threat Mary poses is less likely and therefore the chance of Mary been restored to any position with regard the succession is also unlikely.

    To non-Imperial foreign powers she now becomes even less marriageable - inidentally the French first raised questions about Mary's legitimacy in the early 1520s.

    With a surviving Boleyn marriage Henry's religious settlement in the early 1530s is likely to continue - it is of course debateable whether as in OTL he began to regret some of those decisions and start to clamp down on the more radical reformers at court and out in the country.

    Whatever happens Anne on Henry's death (assuming she lives) is going to find herself the mother of a teenage King who is going to have been heavily influenced by people like Crammer.

    Incidentally I would opt for Edward for their first son (the official announcement prepared for the birth of a son in 1533 who turned out to be Elizabeth I - was Edward - perhaps in honour of Henry's grandfather Edward IV but also probably because both his sons by Catherine who died were named Henry)
  10. Kynan Well-Known Member

    Oct 7, 2013
    1) Duely noted. :)

    2) I know this, it was just my thought that with a more stable position, and the gratitude of her help in the miscariage event, she may be more inclined to defend her and mend the relationship to some degree.

    3) Henry's relationship with her is similar to OTL at this point, but hopefully will be able to change in the near future.

    4) This is happening timeline wise, it is just that she was brought to court to be humiliated.

    5) Duely noted :)

    6) I am aware of that, the talks of marriage are just that at this moment, talks.

    7) Religion is staying on track, for now :p

    8) Possibly...

    9)I was going with Henry's ego taking over his superstitions, as he seems to be quite the egomaniac. :D
  11. Kynan Well-Known Member

    Oct 7, 2013

    Sketch of Henry Tudor, Prince of Wales (1538)


    Minature of Henry Tudor, Prince of Wales (1537)


    Portrait of Princess Anne Tudor (1537)


    Sketch of Lady Mary Tudor (1536)
  12. kasumigenx Well-Known Member

    May 26, 2009
    I think Mary Tudor can marry the brother of Anne of Cleves who in OTL married Jeanne d'albret, in this way she will be harmless.
  13. zert Casual Reader, Interested Follower

    Dec 19, 2010
    Interesting story and I look forward to more. :D
  14. Kynan Well-Known Member

    Oct 7, 2013
    1536: The year began with the royal family reputing the rumours of Her Majesty’s pregnancy, which had been rumoured since early December. The rumours had begun after Anne was seen eating an apple in her apartments, which was always considered a sign of pregnancy for Anne. Eustace Chapuys, ever the gossip, sent this in a letter to Charles V:

    “…withe the Concubine, she seems to be of good health, and possibly with a child, as the womane has beene noted to have eaten apples…”

    With the rumour squashed, Anne prayed that the next rumour of a pregnancy would end with a new prince. But she was in a strong position, with three healthy children and the youth to provide more.

    During this time, she began to push against the influence of Thomas Cromwell, with her ideal reforms being set aside to more ‘profitable’ ideas. Her plan to build schools throughout the country was ignored in favour of filling the royal treasury. She plead with the King, who was recorded as saying:

    “…do but be careful, my faire quene, as you may be brought down as fast as I lifted you…”

    With this response, Anne worked harder behind the scenes to get rid of Cromwell. She planted rumours of supposed lands to be taken, nobles to lose their titles in favour of his children and other things that got the nobles riled up. With all the building hate that Cromwell was getting, she managed to convince the King that he may be affected by the unpopularity of his little friend. By mid-May, Cromwell got all of the hints coming his way and humbly asked the King if he could leave the court, a request that was granted. But he went with silent promises of revenge.

    In her victory, Anne Boleyn thought that her next step would be to simply slid into his place. But when she went to take it; who was there but her own father?

    Yes, in her complacency, her father had taken the king’s right hand side. This development was a shock to the entirety of the court, as the man had not seemed overly close to the king and it was thought that either Charles Brandon or Anne herself would take the position. But, the adaptable woman she was, Anne immediately began to adjust to continue on her mission. She took a different approach, sweet talking Henry towards her plans. This apparently didn’t work as planned, but finally she did get some of the revenue to be used towards education. Only about 3 schools to begin with, but it was a start.

    In late May, the Queen was once again seen with apples in her apartments. This came with more rumours, with Eustace Chapuys once again relaying the stories to Charles V. At this point, the royal world was very curious with Anne’s fertility, as she seemed to have outdone the seemingly more moral (and now dead) Catherine of Aragon quite quickly. There was talk of witchcraft, of ‘ethnic’ medicines and even some thought that Henry may have been right all along! But that was all moot, because Anne turned out to be pregnant again, and it was thought that she might have another set of twins. So, the court waited through the months, with the actual announcement of the pregnancy coming in October, well after the rumours had died down.

    The year also brought the quick breakdown of marriage talks between England and France in conjunction with the marriage of Mary Tudor and Francis of France. The main reason for this, along with other things, was Mary’s legitimacy and how far down the line she was for the throne (or if she even had a right to it). They argued for the ‘Catholic’ thing, but Henry was adamant. Mary was a bastard, and would come after his children by Anne. But she was in the succession. It seemed that he couldn’t really decide if it was after or before Henry FitzRoy, but she was there.

    After this debacle, he was surprised to see that a new suitor was vying Mary’s hand in marriage. The man in question was the heir to the Dukedom of Jülich-Cleves-Berg, and was noted by ambassadors as ‘witty’, ‘intelligent’ and ‘handsome’. And with a more Protestant alliance, it might scare Charles V into recognising Anne, whilst simultaneously getting rid of the ‘Mary Problem’. This route was looked more promising than the French marriage, but there was still talk of little Elizabeth Tudor marrying Prince Charles that could indirectly end the other negotiation.

    With all the hullabaloo with these possible rival alliances, Charles V finally (if unofficially) acknowledged Anne by entering marriage discussions, suggesting the princess Maria of Austria for the young prince Henry Tudor, and possibly his nephew Philip of Portugal as possible match with one of the princesses. Others entered the marriage game, with King Ferdinand (King of Bohemia, Hungary and Croatia/ Archduke of Austria) offering his daughter Eleanor of Austria as a partner to the prince and Prince Ferdinand of Austria as a husband to one of the princesses. Given all these choices, what could Henry VIII do but keep them guessing?

    Finally, with all the clamour around England, Scotland got a bit of light this year, but for a very shocking and sad reason. During a hunting trip in early August, in which James V had been out with a small group of friends (read: about 20 people who didn’t particually like him), he was shot and was brought back to his hunting lodge, dying. He held onto life for 1 month, in which he did something staggering. In an effort to leave the country with an heir, he had his mistress Lady Margaret Erskine brought to him along with a priest, married her, signed a document legitamizing their son James Stewart and spent the last agonising days of his life trying to get her pregnant. The astonished people of Scotland watched this happen, confused and worried for the turmoil to come.

    Last portrait of James V, done in October, 1536.
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2013
  15. Grey Wolf Writer, Poet, Publisher, Cat-sitter Gone Fishin'

    Jan 1, 2004
    Deepest Wales
    Don't forget this guy,_1st_Duke_of_Richmond_and_Somerset

    He's already a duke before the birth of these new children, and was probably at court as acknowledged bastard.

    IMHO Henry VIII may look to HIM as being his Henry, and want Edward for the legitimate son. But, having the legitimate son also called Henry is not impossible; James III had several sons all called James, two of whom were legitimate brothers

    Best Regards
    Grey Wolf
  16. zert Casual Reader, Interested Follower

    Dec 19, 2010
    Ah the mating calls of the 16th Century Royals. Who will join with whom and how many Wars will come of them? ;)
  17. mcdnab Well-Known Member

    Jan 2, 2009
    You have probably just set up civil war in Scotland for at least the next decade between two possibly three factions lol.

    Robert Stewart was not James eldest illegitimate child nor was he born of James most favoured mistress - in 1536 rumours that he planned to marry Lady Margaret Erskine (a long-standing mistress and mother of his son James the future Earl of Moray) were rife in Europe. She would in my opinion be a more likely choice - she was also higher born and better connected.

    Your November date is also a bit problematic he sailed for France in September 1536 and returned the following year with his new French wife Madeleine.

    Give him a fatal injury in August and let him marry Margaret on his deathbed and you might get the result you want.

    Under strict law the Stuart/Stewart succession in 1536 was as follows
    1) Legitimate issue of James V
    2) John Stuart Duke of Albany (who had died without legitimate issue in 1536)
    3) James Hamilton, 2nd Earl of Arran

    The Scots might be willing to go for one of the King's bastards who were legitimised but Hamilton will have significant support though he has an interesting rival who has spent much of his childhood in England - Matthew Stewart, 4th Earl of Lennox (who would in OTL marry Lady Margaret Douglas daughter of Queen Margaret Tudor and her second husband).
    Loads of options for you.
  18. Kynan Well-Known Member

    Oct 7, 2013
    He's been mentioned, but I still think that Henry VIII would want a legitiment namesake.
  19. Kynan Well-Known Member

    Oct 7, 2013

    First official Portait of Princess Anne Tudor (1537)


    Sketch of Lady Mary Tudor (1538)


    Painting of the Tudor Princesses (1537)


    Portrait of the Lady Jane Seymour (1537)
  20. Kynan Well-Known Member

    Oct 7, 2013
    1537: The year began with the birth of another English princess, named Margaret after her aunt and great grandmother. This came as a disappointment to Henry VIII, as he wanted a second son to secure the succession further. But, in spite of this the christening was massive affair, with guest noting that the King spared no expense. Within a month of her birth, there was talks of marriage. The Tudor princesses continues to be the most sought after matches for the time being.

    Next, we turn to Scotland. In the aftermath of the death of James V, there was a rush to see who could procure the throne. While James had pushed for his illegitimate son James Stewart to be the next King, but another, older candidate for the throne was pushing also in the running. James Hamilton, 2nd Earl of Arran, was the next in line before James V’s strange move and also had about 15 years on the young James Stewart. The tangles mess was even further complicated by the pregnancy of Lady Margaret Erskine, which was obvious by late December. The in fights and intrigue went on until late April, when an uneasy truce was put in place, at least temporarily. With the support of Henry VIII, James Hamilton would take the throne, with James Stewart as his primary heir, then the child that was currently unborn. To cement his alliance with the English King, he proposed a marriage to either Margaret Douglas or Mary Tudor. The answer to his proposal was yet to be answered by the end of the year.
    The day finally came in late May, with everyone intently watching for the issue that came from James V and Lady Margaret Erskine’s marriage. So, when she entered the birthing chambers in late April, there was a sense that whatever happened, it would have an effect on the truce that was currently taking place. Later, in mid-May, she emerged with a son, named James in honour of his father. The child was sickly, but seemed to hold on, at least through the year. There was talk that the child was not quite ‘right’, with ‘deathly pale skin’ and ‘colourless eyes’. But still, in late November, Queen Dowager Margaret (as she titled herself) arrived with her two sons in tow. Welcomed warmly, there was a sense that the court was trying to hold it together, at least for the time being. Scotland was unstable, but still together for the time being.

    The year also brought an interesting development. Henry VIII, who had been relatively faithful (key word: relatively) to his Queen, took a mistress and put her in apartments adjoining his. The woman’s name was Lady Jane Seymour, and she was a noblewoman who had previously refused the position of mistress during Anne Boleyn’s previous pregnancy. There was a definite interest in this woman, who seemed to be the polar opposite to the Queen, while only a year younger than her. Eustace Chapuys, ever the windbag, had this to say to Charles V:

    “…and on the new whore, she is at least a Catholic…”


    There was talks that they might be able to get her to convince the King to drop Anne and marry her, but that seemed to a moot point. She had formed a friendship with the queen (admittedly one-sided) and would not encroach on their relationship, no matter how unholy it was. This came as a disappointment, but she did agree to try and move Henry towards Catholicism again.

    In late October, Queen Anne Boleyn announced her latest pregnancy and also the building of 4 new schools across England and 2 in Ireland. This was all funded through the monasteries, with Anne finally having convinced Henry of the importance of education, which would increase his popularity with his subjects as well as her popularity with them.

    Finally, Mary Tudor was officially betrothed to William of Jülich-Cleves-Berge. This development didn’t surprise many, as the discussions had been going well, with the ambassadors coming to good compromises and Mary actually seeming excited about the match, as the seemingly mending relationship between her and the Queen was again cooling and she wanted to escape the scheming of the English court. The dowry was really undecided at this point, but there was hope of land and/or an English title. All looked good for the match.