"Who would rid me of this troublesome wife?"

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by ranichi17, May 21, 2018.

  1. ranichi17 Unabashed Targaryen Critic

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    Yes, I know, I still have another timeline but hear me out. What if after Henry VIII finds out that the Legatine Court ruled in favor of Catherine, he utters the fatal words "Who would rid me of this troublesome wife?" and some ambitious knight overhears the King's half-meant words, jumps at the chance, and assassinates Catherine in broad daylight expecting a reward? What would have been the repercussions of Catherine's assassination in England and the continent?
     
  2. Southern pride Well-Known Member

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    Well that poor knight gets executed for treason Henry marries Anne while Spain will most likely start gathering strength for a war against England.
     
  3. Clandango Disestablishmentarianist

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  4. ranichi17 Unabashed Targaryen Critic

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    That's exactly what I was thinking of, lmao.

    Do you think Henry would get excommunicated for sanctioning the murder?
     
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  5. Clandango Disestablishmentarianist

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    I wasn't questioning that, I was putting the link and such more to point to how interpretations change, though I probably wasn't clear. In retrospect, it was more like I was giving a piece of trivia on a bubblegum wrapper.
     
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  6. Kellan Sullivan Well-Known Member

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    Henry II owed the pope a crusade/pilgrimage to Jerusalem for the murder of St. Thomas, but be never paid up. Imposing such a sentence on Henry VIII will make our Tudor king think he died and went to heaven with Christmas come early.

    Henry got excommunicated anyway but no one really DID anythig about it (i.e. there were threats of invasion but nothing REALLY warlike), since Europe had bigger fish to fry (François vs Karl's cock measuring contest; the Turks in Hungary; the Reformation etc).

    How does the pope react? Clement VII's probably privately relieved that this issue's no longer on the table. Publically he'd urge the arrest and execution of the people who did it - which Henrycan use to get rid of some people at court that are troubling him at the time, and slap a fine on Henry. Henry's reaction might be Anne-who? Since he's now free to shop for new brides abroad (as long as he can be washed squeaky clean). But I'm guessing he still marries Annie
     
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  7. Clandango Disestablishmentarianist

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    Ahhh yes, we come to the fn part. We need to find exactly who the people killing Anne is. Afterwards we can go Stalinist with purges or something, though I imagine it mostly gets down to finding a couple of scape goats. As the knight is stupid enough to kill the queen and hope for a reward, I doubt he will already have a big patron. I expect people might try tieing it in to Anne. And of course whoever failed to protect Catherine will face problems. And this thing needs to be really public, if we don't want Henry being accused of having her killed while under house arrest. People will still say he tried having her killed, and I expect there will be conspiracy theories for centuries.
     
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  8. alexmilman Well-Known Member

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    The assassin, if he is as stupid as stipulated, would be definitely executed as a traitor but there is no reason for "Spain" (actually, Spain and HRE) to do anything excessively drastic after assassin's execution.

    BTW, what "gathering strength" is supposed to mean? After all, Charles V was the most powerful ruler in Europe and England of Henry VIII was not quite in his league. Depending upon a precise timing he could already be at war with England (for example, if the timing is in 1526 - 30 bracket) but England was too much down the list of his opponents in the terms of importance for Charles to pay any serious attention.

    The main lesson from the whole situation (and his future marriage to Anne of Cleves) was obvious: never marry a woman of whom you can't easily get rid of. In other words, marry your subjects. Contemporary of his daughter, Ivan the Terrible (Husband) also had 6 wives but did not have any problems whatsoever, no even need for the public executions which, while providing public entertainment, were of a bad taste: why to make a public spectacle out of a purely domestic issue? A king (or Tsar) with the horns on his head is a pathetic figure while death from the natural causes is a commonplace and, as an option, you can always accuse the people you don't like in being poisoners and kill two birds with one stone. ;)
     
  9. ranichi17 Unabashed Targaryen Critic

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    Wait, I just remembered. What happens to Mary in this scenario. She was in Ludlow during the Legatine proceedings, where she's presumably easier to sneak out of the country from than if she was at court during the murder.
     
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  10. Kellan Sullivan Well-Known Member

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    Why would they want to sneak her out? Depending when this is, Mary will probably have a better relationship with daddy dearest. Katherine (much as I like her) might've felt God never called her to a nunnery but her stubbornness caused a souring of Henry's relationship with Mary. Of course, Mary didn't help matters when she refused to acknowledge Anne as queen etc, but there her mom was still alive. Here she isn't. Henry might have Mary brought back to court and while Anne might WANT to have Mary as lady-in-waiting, Henry isn't going to back her as he did OTL.
     
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  11. ranichi17 Unabashed Targaryen Critic

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    I might be misremembering, but wasn't there a plot to replace Henry with Mary after he's been excommunicated and thus lost his divine right to rule?
     
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  12. alexmilman Well-Known Member

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    He was publicly flogged at Canterbury: allowed each bishop present, including Foliot, to give him five blows from a rod, then each of the 80 monks of Canterbury Cathedral gave the king three blows. Admittedly, unpleasant (if they had been doing this seriously) on a personal level but much more cheaper (even with the cost of the gifts to Becket's shrine) than all that crusading nonsense.

    "Yes, sure, as soon as I have spare time...." Not to mention that neither crusade nor pilgrimage to Jerusalem were realistic by that time (Charles V had been planning crusade - a seaborne attack on Istanbul but this was pretty much a theory).

    Exactly. England was not important enough even to consider implementation of the allied obligations to her: when after Pavia Henry started making the noises ("And what about me? You promised to give me a cookie!"), the response was that he contributed nothing to the victory and does not deserve any reward.


    Fine for what? Henry did nothing wrong and immediately executed the assassin and everybody remotely related to him (and a bunch of people who he disliked at this specific moment or who, in his opinion, had a reasonably attractive piece of a real estate, or whatever).


    Why bother with the foreign brides after such an annoying experience when you have enough of the willing local candidates whom you can later kill without any repercussions?
     
  13. ranichi17 Unabashed Targaryen Critic

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    Henry does need an ally after the fallout of Catherine's death. And before Anne was executed, the trial and execution of an anointed queen is unprecedented in England. Besides, the rest of Europe thought her a witch and a concubine, so no one was particularly outraged about Henry killing her. A queen thought lawfully wedded on the other hand, would be much more serious.
     
  14. alexmilman Well-Known Member

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    I'd say that Henry was thinking that he needs an ally because he had an over-inflated opinion of himself and of England's place in contemporary world. In a reality, he could probably exist without any allies if he did not mess in the affairs on a continent. IIRC, none of his alliances proved to be too beneficial for him.

    As for the executions, I'm afraid that you missed my point: as long as he was selecting wives among his subjects, he could execute or divorce them at will and nobody abroad would care even if they were properly crowned. But selection of a foreign princes required a gentler approach (as long as he was intended to remain an "international figure").
     
  15. BlueFlowwer Well-Known Member

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    Well Catherine gets martyred to a insane degree, she was already very beloved by her subjects.
     
  16. Joseph890 Well-Known Member

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    You know I know this is a little bit off topic but why did Henry not poison his first wife when she could not have anymore children that would’ve been a lot less time-consuming than trying to get an annulment from the pope.
     
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  17. ranichi17 Unabashed Targaryen Critic

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    It's going to be too convenient that it's suspicious.
     
  18. Kellan Sullivan Well-Known Member

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    Cause at the time he still loved her? Katherine only hit the point where she couldn't have more kids (at least they gave up of there being more kids) in 1521/22 IIRC. Mistress Boleyn arrived on the scene in 1525. And it was only then that the three ring circus that was the divorce proceedings started.
     
  19. WillVictoria Hasn't happened yet though

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    This, plus the fact that Henry probably learned from history that mysterious deaths often play poorly at court, especially when the deceased party is as popular as Katherine was. There's a reason Anne Boleyn went down in a show trial and not mysteriously falling down a flight of stairs. This way Henry could make an argument which absolved himself of guilt, both to win public approval and ease his conscious. The last major case of "people politically inconvenient for the King mysteriously disappearing/dying" was Richard III and the Princes in the Tower. If Katherine randomly drops dead Henry is the first suspect, and unlike the deaths of Anne and Kathryn Howard IOTL there's no way for Henry to use the legal system to explain away any hurt feelings (which will be much greater here due to Katherine's popularity and connections).
     
  20. darthfanta Offline

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    Initially,I thought it was going to be about Henry II asking someone to kill Eleanor instead of Thomas Beckett.