Catherine of Aragon born only child ?

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by Mina-van-Mako, Dec 3, 2019.

  1. Mina-van-Mako Marquise of Excess

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    What if Catherine of Aragon (who became wife to Henry VIII OTL) was born only child ? OTL, her sister Jane the Mad became queen of Spain, but the consequences should go further :

    First, because Catherine was considered by her peers as brilliant and many people thought "what a shame she wasn't born a boy she would've been a great sovereign" among her hsuband's court.

    Second because Jane of Spain is the ancestor of Charles V and many Hapsburg sovereigns, meaning many sovereigns in general, changing the entire royal family tree of Europe.

    Thirdly, because Henry VIII would've had another wife, maybe one that would've granted him annulement, or would've had a surviving son with him.


    So, how massive would the butterflies be ? Any direct ideas ? Who would she marry ?
     
  2. Jan Olbracht Well-Known Member

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    Only child, born 16 years after her parents married? New La Beltraneja.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2019
  3. Tyler96 Well-Known Member

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    Not having an heir until so late in their marriage could have a destabilising effect on Isabella and Ferdinand's regime.
     
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  4. Mina-van-Mako Marquise of Excess

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    So La Beltraneja and her husband the King of Portugal could wage a war against Castille and Aragon, except if her husband dies before. But her son could still support her, and some noblemen too. The instability caused by La Beltraneja and the lack of a heir could force the royal couple to find Catherine a fiancé as soon as she's born ... was that even legal at that time ?
     
  5. FalconHonour Well-Known Member

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    Oh yes, it was most definitely legal. Several Princesses of France of the period were engaged from birth, if memory serves. It was just the consummation of the marriage that was forbidden until the girl was at least 12.

    But I wonder whether Katherine's status as an only child might have an effect on her parents' Reconquista as well. Without an heir to stabilise their Kingdoms, I doubt they'll have the strength to kick the Moors out of Southern Spain either.

    Not to mention that a girl can't inherit Aragon, so they're going to split off from each other after Ferdinand and Isabella's deaths anyway, which means Katherine, although she will be a good match on the marriage market, won't be quite as desirable as she would be if she'd been born a boy and undisputed heir to both thrones...
     
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  6. kasumigenx Well-Known Member

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    Actually, for this to work is that this catherine of aragon is instead the daughter of La Beltraneja and the eldest son of Isabella of Castile(a Male Isabella of Aragon) born in 1486.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2019
  7. Mina-van-Mako Marquise of Excess

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    Having La beltraneja have a daughter similar to Catherine is interesting but is a different topic ...

    @FalconHonour however Jane the Mad was female too and inherited Aragon as co-queen as far as I know
     
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  8. isabella Well-Known Member

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    Ferdinand and Isabella being childless would likely hurt a lot the early part of their reign... If Catalina’s sibling are born but died unmarried then things will go more or less as OTL and Catalina will be likely married to Manuel of Portugal.

    @Mina-van-Mako: why you are calling Queen Juana of Spain as Jane? Her name in English is always translated as Joanna not Jane or Joan
     
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  9. Mina-van-Mako Marquise of Excess

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    Which would make a Castille-Portugal personal union, even if Catherine can't receive Aragon.

    I'm calling her Jane because her French name is Jeanne, so I was expecting Jane ... I do my best to communicate but it's not always perfect or even good
     
  10. Ivan Lupo Well-Known Member

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    I think the end goal for your scenario is to see Catalina of Aragon as the only child left to Fernando and Isabel once all is said and done, with the assumption that the union of Castile and Aragon is strong and secure, and that Granada has been conquered on schedule. It really wouldn't be that difficult to see her sisters all die prematurely, but as far as the Catholic Monarchs were concerned, so long as their son Juan was still alive, all was good. At least, until he died in 1497 and threw all their plans into disarray.

    Well, let's say it's 1497, and the younger Isabel, Juan, Juana, and Maria have all died, leaving Catalina as the only one left. Honestly, the most likely thing that happens is that she ends up marrying Manuel of Portugal. There is no way that Fernando would let Philip of Burgundy anywhere back near their family and England is still too detached from Spanish interests at this time. If Queen Isabel wants to see her dream of full unification of all the Spanish kingdoms, this is the most prudent, expedient way to have that happen. Their heir inherits all three crowns and it would probably be only a matter of time before Navarre is finally conquered. The births of OTL's Charles V, Mary I, and arguably even Elizabeth I are all butterflied away and the future of Europe is nearly unrecognizable.
     
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  11. Mina-van-Mako Marquise of Excess

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    Do you think in this situation Iberia could become some tri-headed monarchy ?

    Castille already had trouble absorbing one kingdom, but two would be even harder ...
     
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  12. BlueFlowwer Well-Known Member

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    All rise up for Queen Catherine The Magnificent I of Castile and her husband and consort Manuel The Fortunate I of Portugal

    Issue:

    John III of Spain-Portugal b 1504

    Infanta Isabella of Spain-Portugal b 1506

    Infante Ferdinand of Spain-Portugal 1509

    Infanta Beatrice of Spain Portugal 1510

    Infante Manuel of Spain-Portugal 1512
     
  13. The Professor Pontifex Collegii Vexillographiariorum

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    Wouldn't the whole thing be Spain? Spain being the contemporary term for all Iberia until more generations of Castile-Leon-Aragon stole it for good.
     
  14. Ivan Lupo Well-Known Member

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    So long as the individual Corts of each kingdom are maintained and their laws kept in place, it could last. However, the fact of the matter is that over the course of time, Castile with the much larger territory and population, would slowly begin to dominate the union, though in this scenario, it would technically be a Portuguese house ruling all three. Check out Una Diferente Plus Ultra by @Torbald to get an idea as to how a unified Spain/Iberia would be ruled. It's a similar scenario, except Torbald has the son of Manuel and the younger Isabel, Miguel da Paz, survive childhood and inherit all three crowns.

    This particular timeline we have going here would be dramatically different in that Philip the Fair wouldn't have gotten the chance to sire Charles and Ferdinand. I have no idea who else this dude could even marry if Juana has already died. Anne of Brittany would be the most attractive bride after her husband Charles VIII dies the following year, but there would be a lot of legal finagling and skulduggery to be done in order to both pry her out of the existing contract for her to marry Louis XII and to also get the dispensation from the Pope to be allowed to marry his father's second wife, even if that marriage was never consummated and eventually annulled. If Juana had died before before 1495, there would still be a short window for him to marry his previous fiancee Anne of York or her sister Catherine, two daughters of Edward IV.
     
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  15. Ivan Lupo Well-Known Member

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    The crazy thing about this scenario is that provided everyone lives long enough and also subsequently outlive both Fernando and Isabel, you could wind up with a family union that sees Manuel as King of Portugal, Catalina as Queen of Castile, and their son (going with your suggestion of Juan) as King of Aragon and heir to the other two crowns.
     
  16. isabella Well-Known Member

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    You will do better to check on Wikipedia if you do not know the right spelling... Catalina can receive Aragon if Fernando want and push for it: in OTL the younger Isabella was recognized as Princess of Girona and not only of Asturias... Sure Aragon would like better being ruled by her son so...
    That only if the Cortes of Aragon do not leave any other chance to Fernando and Catalina
     
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