Author Topic: Mary Boleyn's children  (Read 57701 times)

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Offline Prince_Lieven

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Mary Boleyn's children
« on: July 26, 2005, 07:37:45 AM »
Now, we all know Mary Boleyn was Henry VIII's mistress for a time. Afterwards, she married William Carey. Her two children, Catherine Carey and Henry Carey, often have their paternity diputed. Henry never acknowleged them, though that isn't saying much. Opinions on whose children they were, anyone?
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Prince_Christopher

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Re: Mary Boleyn's children
« Reply #1 on: July 26, 2005, 10:20:42 AM »
Didn't she also have a child with William Stafford?

Offline Prince_Lieven

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Re: Mary Boleyn's children
« Reply #2 on: July 26, 2005, 10:45:25 AM »
I got this from Wikipedia:

'Shortly after going back to England, February 4, 1520, Mary married William Carey, a courtier. Henry VIII was a guest at the couple's wedding, and Mary soon became the king's lover. Popular legend states that Mary bore Henry two illegitimate children, but this seems unlikely. One witness did note that Mary's son had a strong resemblance to Henry VIII, but this could have been conjecture. Henry usually acknowledged all male bastards as his own and when he finished with Mary he had not yet fallen for her sister Anne, thus meaning that there was no reason for him to deny paternity of the child if he had been the father.Mary's children both bore the surname of Carey, it could be reasoned however that the knighthood and lands bestowed upon William Carey (noticeable after the birth of Catherine) were rewards for giving the children his name.'

As to the William Stafford marriage, Wikipedia has this to say:

'Her marriage to Sir William Stafford (d. May 5, 1556) resulted in the birth of a son. He is considered to have been born in 1535 and to have died in 1545.'
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ajv123ajv

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Re: Mary Boleyn's children
« Reply #3 on: July 27, 2005, 01:58:03 PM »
Katherine marrried Sir Francis Knollys and they has a daughter Lettice who was the mother of the Earl of Essex who was beheaded by Elizabeth II for treason.

So if Katherine was a haf-sister to Elizabeth that would mean Elizabeth was the Earl of Essex Great Aunt.

Image of Lettice Mary's Grandaughter


Offline Prince_Lieven

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Re: Mary Boleyn's children
« Reply #4 on: July 27, 2005, 01:59:24 PM »
Thanks for that, Great Dude. Lettice looks amazingly like Elizabeth I in that portrait, doesn't she? Does that suggest that she was, in fact, Elizabeth's half-niece?
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Finelly

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Re: Mary Boleyn's children
« Reply #5 on: July 28, 2005, 12:27:48 AM »
Well, Elizabeth looked a lot like her mother, so the fact that Lettice resembled Elizabeth doesn't mean Lettice was related to Henry Tudor........

ajv123ajv

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Re: Mary Boleyn's children
« Reply #6 on: July 28, 2005, 11:05:11 AM »
Quote
Well, Elizabeth looked a lot like her mother, so the fact that Lettice resembled Elizabeth doesn't mean Lettice was related to Henry Tudor........



.......doesn't mean she wasn't either...

Offline Prince_Lieven

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Re: Mary Boleyn's children
« Reply #7 on: July 28, 2005, 04:49:38 PM »
Well most likely never know, but it never hurts to speculate. Some people have said that the reason that Elizabeth I promoted the interests of Catherine and Henry Carey was because she knew them to be her siblings - this doesn't hold water. She may also simply have done it because they were her Boleyn relatives.
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Arianwen

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Re: Mary Boleyn's children
« Reply #8 on: July 28, 2005, 05:55:37 PM »
As for Henry and Catherine Carey, I've heard a few different options:

Option #1 - both children were really Henry's (the most frequent one)

Option #2 - the elder was Will Carey's, the younger was Henry's

Option #3 - both children were Will Carey's

I don't know which I believe, and I don't even know if Mary herself knew. I'm leaning slightly toward the children being Henry's, given descriptions I've heard of their appearances, but who knows?

Regards,
Arianwen

ilyala

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Re: Mary Boleyn's children
« Reply #9 on: August 10, 2005, 03:33:46 PM »
why is the option 2 with the younger being henry's? wasn't the affair before the marriage?

i read somewhere that that's one of the reasons anne refused henry sexual favors. because she had seen her sister accept them and then married off to some small courtier and she wanted more than a small courtier...

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Re: Mary Boleyn's children
« Reply #10 on: August 10, 2005, 03:37:34 PM »
Maybe people think that Henry Carey was Henry's son because he was named Henry . . . I agree with you though. It seems more likely that if either were Henry's, Catherine was.
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umigon

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Re: Mary Boleyn's children
« Reply #11 on: August 10, 2005, 06:10:39 PM »
The affair started after Mary's marriage, in about 1521 or 22. But Mary moved constantly to her father's or her husband's family home, that is why many think Catherine Carey really was William's daughter.

The fact that many state Henry Carey was the King's son is that in July 1525 the relationship between Henry and Mary finally ended and some jewels were given to her. Then, in March 1526, Henry Carey was born. Sum up the months, Mary was like a month pregnant or so.

It is true that we will probably  never know, but Carey was reported to be some kind of Henry VIII's human photocopy. Whether he was the King's son or not, Elizabeth was very fond of him, and Carey was always a loyal subject to the Queen.



Henry Carey (1526-1596), First Baron Hunsdon: You can't really appreciate because the portrait is in black and white, but Carey's hair was like the typical reddish Tudor hair!
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by umigon »

Arianwen

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Re: Mary Boleyn's children
« Reply #12 on: August 10, 2005, 08:17:24 PM »
Quote
why is the option 2 with the younger being henry's? wasn't the affair before the marriage?


I've heard at different times that the affair continued through her marriage, or started after, as well as reading that it started before the marriage. I haven't researched this bit of it in a while.

Quote
i read somewhere that that's one of the reasons anne refused henry sexual favors. because she had seen her sister accept them and then married off to some small courtier and she wanted more than a small courtier...


Perhaps Anne even thought that if she held out long enough, Mary Talbot may have been granted a divorce from Harry Percy, and Henry would have let her marry him. Who knows?

Regards,
Arianwen

Lady_Aurora

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possible reason Anne refused Henry favors
« Reply #13 on: January 21, 2006, 03:15:03 PM »
About Anne's refusial of the King before marraige...

Anne was not married and was known to still be a maid (tho i have read that that's questionable...not completely sure) and if the king were to use her the same way he had used her sister (who was married and believe to no longer be a maid) then drop her there would be no way Anne could make a suitable marraige.  the fact that she had been thrown away by the king would have ruined her, and her family couldn't take that chance. mary however could just go back to her husband, William Carey.

Lorelei_Lee

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Re: Mary Boleyn's children
« Reply #14 on: January 21, 2006, 06:19:57 PM »
Hi Lady Aurora!

In general I think you make a very good point; however, I think the rules might have been a little different for a king's castoff mistress.  Bessie Blount, for instance, was unmarried when she began her affair with the King in 1518.   Then, in 1519, she married Sir Gilbert Tailboys (may have spelled that wrong).  Henry Fitzroy was born in 1519 also, but I'm not sure whether it was before or after the wedding.  In any case, Bessie had no trouble finding someone to marry her.

I think it's more likely that Anne simply wasn't interested in being anyone's mistress, King or otherwise.  Mary apparently slept around while she was at the French court, and even supposedly had an affair with Francois I, but Anne, while equally as admired, had a reputation at the court for being chaste.  I believe that if she did have sexual experience before she married Henry it probably was with Henry Percy, to whom she considered herself betrothed.  

Interesting bit of trivia about Lettice:  she was the Earl of Leicester's second wife.  Elizabeth eventually forgave her "sweet Robin" for his secret marriage to her cousin, but she never did forgive Lettice.  It was through the Earl that Essex came to Elizabeth's notice; apparently he was fond enough of his stepson to want to promote his career at court.