Author Topic: Henry VIII's wives and their physical attributes  (Read 57550 times)

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Offline ilyala

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Re: Henry VIII's wives and their physical attribut
« Reply #15 on: December 15, 2005, 03:05:21 AM »
catherine of aragon:

young:



old:



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Offline ilyala

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Re: Henry VIII's wives and their physical attribut
« Reply #16 on: December 15, 2005, 03:07:04 AM »
...and finally....

anne boleyn.



drop dead gorgeous if you ask me :P
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Offline umigon

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Re: Henry VIII's wives and their physical attribut
« Reply #17 on: December 15, 2005, 03:09:38 AM »
Well, in Catherine of Aragon's portraits there is something that happens to me with every one of them: I would love to protect her. I don't know, maybe I have a special sympathy for her because she was Spanish, as I am, but still I think she was a good woman and all of her portraits inspire protective feelings in me. Specially the Michael Sittow portrait.


About Anne Boleyn, I must recognise, although I don't think very kindly of her, that she must have been the most attractive of Henry's wives. Even now, when I see her portraits (except for those in which she appears really ugly) I feel her attraction.


Jane Seymour, well, I think that in her portraits she doesn't seem kind and quiet, but simply boring. However, I have much sympathy for her because of her treatment of Mary Tudor (you know I'm committed to the Catherine and Mary fanlisting club!).

Anne of Cleves: I don't think she is beautiful, in that, I am with Henry, although he thought the painting of Holbein was attractive, I can't see a real beauty there. She has like a faraway look. But I must admit that I think she was much more attractive and intelligent as many think. I don't think her marriage to Henry wasn't consummated... Henry knew how to get things done, why was he going to be sincere this time.


Catherine Howard: Is the Holbein portrait, identified as her, still identified as being hers? If it is, then Catherine Howard is not so ugly. If we can just judge by the famous miniature, then I wouldn't have liked her as a wife! ;)


Catherine Parr: She must have been attractive, with so much knowledge and such a good character. Her portrait, and those identified as hers, show us a woman that held to her attributes (both mental and physical) until the end.
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ferngully

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Re: Henry VIII's wives and their physical attribut
« Reply #18 on: December 15, 2005, 04:16:46 AM »
well henry liked a change i suppose ;)
katherine of aragon was married to his brother first so i wouldn't expect much attraction there. she does seem to be pretty when she was young, but as she was disposed of in some cold draughty house when she died, i guess her health wavered quite bit.
anne boleyn relied too much on her unusual good looks i think.
jane seymour was just a dutiful wife, nothing more, not pretty or intelligent, just a carrier for the son as far as i know.
anne of cleves must have had something abou her but i think henry was very disapointed that she wasn't what he expected, he ignored her.
i think catherine howard was just young, nothing more.
catherine parr would have been more intelligent than pretty, but it served its purpose.
thats what i've gathered.
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Offline Prince_Lieven

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Re: Henry VIII's wives and their physical attribut
« Reply #19 on: December 15, 2005, 06:55:18 AM »
Does anyone else think Jane looks somehow very 'puritan'? Those pursed lips . . . she looks pretty shrewd to me.

I think Catherine of Aragon was very pretty when young. As she got older, years of childbearing affected her figure - always damning for a short person. Of course, we must remember she was 6 years Henry's senior.
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Offline bell_the_cat

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Re: Henry VIII's wives and their physical attribut
« Reply #20 on: December 15, 2005, 07:54:03 AM »
Quote
Does anyone else think Jane looks somehow very 'puritan'? Those pursed lips . . . she looks pretty shrewd to me.

I think Catherine of Aragon was very pretty when young. As she got older, years of childbearing affected her figure - always damning for a short person. Of course, we must remember she was 6 years Henry's senior.


I didn't know C of A was short.

Does anyone know which of the wives was the tallest?
How tall was Henry?
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Offline Prince_Lieven

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Re: Henry VIII's wives and their physical attribut
« Reply #21 on: December 15, 2005, 07:56:05 AM »
I think Henry was about 6 foot. Fraser states definitely that Catherine was a tiny women - not a dwarf, but short, and this made people surprised to here her quite deep voice. I think Catherine Parr was tall, but I can't remember why I think that.  ::)

Notice how the high hairline seemed to be fashionable back then. All the wives except AB and KH had it.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by Prince_Lieven »
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ferngully

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Re: Henry VIII's wives and their physical attribut
« Reply #22 on: December 15, 2005, 08:05:55 AM »
Quote
Does anyone else think Jane looks somehow very 'puritan'? Those pursed lips . . . she looks pretty shrewd to me.



i think she was catholic and disaproved of henry's protestant ohase. i actually thought she was protestant at first becuase of that expression on her face :P
selina                    xxxxxxx

Offline ilyala

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Re: Henry VIII's wives and their physical attribut
« Reply #23 on: December 15, 2005, 08:20:32 AM »
what we must remember is that catherine of aragon and henry were married for a very long time and that there was some attachment there. lots of it actually, before anne boleyn came up. after anne boleyn it was much easier for him to change a wife, i think it was more of a mood thing.  catherine howard was a pawn in the hands of her family who simply placed her in henry's face and let him do the rest.
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Offline Lady_Murasaki

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Re: Henry VIII's wives and their physical attribut
« Reply #24 on: December 15, 2005, 08:30:53 AM »
Quote

I didn't know C of A was short.

Does anyone know which of the wives was the tallest?
How tall was Henry?


I'm not sure. I thought Ann Boleyn was small as well as Catherine of Aragon.

Somewhere in my spotty memory, I seem to recall something about Anne of Cleves being considered big or ungainly. Was she tall? Does anyone know?

I believe Henry was six feet tall. I remember seeing a suit of armor that belonged to him at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by Lady_Murasaki »

Offline ilyala

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Re: Henry VIII's wives and their physical attribut
« Reply #25 on: December 15, 2005, 08:33:53 AM »
henry was indeed huge, from the start, as far as height was concerned. and he got huge in the other aspects too when he got old :P

for some reason (i can't back this up, it's just an impression) i thought that anne boleyn was tall. catherine howard and jane seymour were small, and so was catherine of aragon...
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Offline Kimberly

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Re: Henry VIII's wives and their physical attribut
« Reply #26 on: December 15, 2005, 03:43:16 PM »

I can't back this up Ilyala, but I have read somewhere that the wives were all less than 5'5" except Anne of Cleves who was taller :-/
Also that portrait of catherine Howard is not her is it? It is disputed now I thought?
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by Kimberly »
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Offline stacey

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Re: Henry VIII's wives and their physical attribut
« Reply #27 on: December 21, 2005, 04:27:35 AM »
I'm not sure about the heights of most of them. I do recall hearing that Katherine of Aragon was short, and that Anne Boleyn was of "middling" height, I guess meaning "average"--whatever the average height was for women back then--probably not much!!

Henry on the other hand was very tall for a man of his time--at least six feet, possibly more.

About their looks:
I think Katherine of Aragon was very pretty as a young girl. Childbearing and stress and age didn't do her any favor as far as her looks and figure went, over the years. She's still someone I admire a lot, while she may not have kept her youthful looks I think she had great spiritual beauty and strength. And Henry went and broke her heart.

Anne Boleyn--I agree, the beauty of the whole crowd. True, her brunette coloring was unpopular then, but she was very attractive and clearly had an enormous sexual allure and great personal charm and grace. She had a definite "movie star" quality.

Jane Seymour--What can I say?? If Henry couldn't bring himself to sleep with Anne of Cleves (supposedly due to her looks or rather the lack thereof) how in the WORLD did he manage to sire a child with this woman?? Homely doesn't BEGIN to describe Jane--and yes, she does look like she just bit down on something particularly sour! That face could curdle milk. Sheesh!!

Anne of Cleves--I think it's a shame she couldn't sue Henry for defamation of character--or rather, looks. I see a very pretty young woman in her portrait. I never understood this song-and-dance about poor Henry being forced to marry this "great Flanders mare". I think she was pretty, if not very accomplished, and if we're gonna compare people to Flanders mares, see Jane Seymour above.

Katherine Howard--If that IS a portrait of her, then I'm stunned. Henry found Anne of Cleves ugly and thought that THIS was a perfect English rose?? English, yes, but--I hope that at least she had a luscious figure and lovely youthful complexion, as has been mentioned. Because otherwise--how would you ever get past that NOSE, never mind the rest?!?

Katherine Parr--Agreed, not a stunning beauty, but I find her quite pretty. She also had apparently an appealing manner and was a kind and gentle person. Altogether I think a very attractive lady.

So there you have it---my opinions, for what they're worth!! ;D
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PssMarieAmelie

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Re: Henry VIII's wives and their physical attribut
« Reply #28 on: December 21, 2005, 04:29:21 AM »
Quote
I'm not sure about the heights of most of them. I do recall hearing that Katherine of Aragon was short, and that Anne Boleyn was of "middling" height, I guess meaning "average"--whatever the average height was for women back then--probably not much!!

Henry on the other hand was very tall for a man of his time--at least six feet, possibly more.

About their looks:
I think Katherine of Aragon was very pretty as a young girl. Childbearing and stress and age didn't do her any favor as far as her looks and figure went, over the years. She's still someone I admire a lot, while she may not have kept her youthful looks I think she had great spiritual beauty and strength. And Henry went and broke her heart.

Anne Boleyn--I agree, the beauty of the whole crowd. True, her brunette coloring was unpopular then, but she was very attractive and clearly had an enormous sexual allure and great personal charm and grace. She had a definite "movie star" quality.

Jane Seymour--What can I say?? If Henry couldn't bring himself to sleep with Anne of Cleves (supposedly due to her looks or rather the lack thereof) how in the WORLD did he manage to sire a child with this woman?? Homely doesn't BEGIN to describe Jane--and yes, she does look like she just bit down on something particularly sour! That face could curdle milk. Sheesh!!

Anne of Cleves--I think it's a shame she couldn't sue Henry for defamation of character--or rather, looks. I see a very pretty young woman in her portrait. I never understood this song-and-dance about poor Henry being forced to marry this "great Flanders mare". I think she was pretty, if not very accomplished, and if we're gonna compare people to Flanders mares, see Jane Seymour above.

Katherine Howard--If that IS a portrait of her, then I'm stunned. Henry found Anne of Cleves ugly and thought that THIS was a perfect English rose?? English, yes, but--I hope that at least she had a luscious figure and lovely youthful complexion, as has been mentioned. Because otherwise--how would you ever get past that NOSE, never mind the rest?!?

Katherine Parr--Agreed, not a stunning beauty, but I find her quite pretty. She also had apparently an appealing manner and was a kind and gentle person. Altogether I think a very attractive lady.

So there you have it---my opinions, for what they're worth!! ;D



Ouch! But I agree with most of it, though. ;D

Offline Prince_Lieven

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Re: Henry VIII's wives and their physical attribut
« Reply #29 on: December 21, 2005, 04:34:45 AM »
Just to nip in with something here - I think a BIG part of Jane Seymour's attraction was the 'very modest behaviour' that Henry praised. In both looks and her behaviour, she was a complete and total contrast to Anne Boleyn. Henry didn't want a women who reminded him of Anne. Jane, with her obvious lack of 'sex appeal' and her fair colouring, combined with her 'Bound to obey and serve' creed, was the ideal choice.
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