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  1. Catherine Howard (c. 1521-25 – 13 February 1542), also spelled Katherine Howard, was Queen of England from 1540 until 1541 as the fifth wife of Henry VIII. She was the daughter of Lord Edmund Howard and Joyce Culpeper, cousin to Anne Boleyn (the second wife of Henry VIII), and niece to Thomas Howard, 3rd Duke of Norfolk.

    • Early Life
    • Youthful Indiscretions
    • at Court
    • Marriage
    • Charges
    • Death
    • Legacy
    • Sources

    Catherine Howard was born in London, England, sometime around 1523. Her parents were Lord Edmund Howard and Joyce Culpeper. In 1531, through the influence of his niece Anne Boleyn, Edmund Howard obtained a position as comptroller for Henry VIII in Calais. When her father went to Calais, Catherine Howard was placed in the care of Agnes Tilney, Dowager Duchess of Norfolk, her father's stepmother. Howard lived with Agnes Tilney at Chesworth House and then at Norfolk House. She was one of many young nobles sent to live under Agnes Tilney's supervision—and that supervision was notably loose. Howard's education, which included reading and writing and music, was directed by Tilney.

    About 1536, while living with Tilney at Chesworth House, Howard had a sexual relationship with a music tutor, Henry Manox (Mannox or Mannock). Tilney reportedly struck Howard when she caught the two together. Manox followed her to Norfolk House and tried to continue a relationship. Manox was eventually replaced in young Howard's affections by Frances Dereham, a secretary and relative. Howard shared a bed at the Tilney home with Katherine Tilney, and the two were visited a few times in their bedchamber by Dereham and Edward Malgrave, a cousin of Henry Manox, Howard's former love. Howard and Dereham apparently did consummate their relationship, reportedly calling each other "husband" and "wife" and promising marriage—what to the church amounted to a contract of marriage. Manox heard gossip of the relationship and jealously reported it to Agnes Tilney. When Dereham saw the warning note, he guessed it had been written by Manox, which implies that Dereham knew of Howard's relationship wi...

    Howard was to serve as a lady in waiting to Henry VIII's newest (fourth) queen, Anne of Cleves, soon to arrive in England. This assignment was probably arranged by her uncle, Thomas Howard, Duke of Norfolk and one of Henry's advisors. Anne of Cleves arrived in England in December 1539, and Henry may have first seen Howard at that event. At court, she caught the king's attention, as he was quite quickly unhappy in his new marriage. Henry started courting Howard, and by May was publicly giving her gifts. Anne complained of this attraction to the ambassador from her homeland.

    Henry had his marriage to Anne of Cleves annulled on July 9, 1540. He then married Catherine Howard on July 28, generously bestowing jewelry and other expensive gifts on his much-younger and attractive bride. On their wedding day, Thomas Cromwell, who had arranged the marriage of Henry to Anne of Cleves, was executed. Howard was publicly made queen on August 8. Early the next year, Howard began a flirtation—perhaps more—with one of Henry's favorites, Thomas Culpeper, who was also a distant relative on her mother's side and who had a reputation for lechery. Arranging their clandestine meetings was Howard's lady of the privy chamber, Jane Boleyn, Lady Rochford, widow of George Boleyn who had been executed with his sister Anne Boleyn. Only Lady Rochford and Katherine Tilney were permitted into Howard's rooms when Culpeper was present. Whether Culpeper and Howard were lovers or whether she was pressured by him but did not acquiesce to his sexual advances is unknown. Howard was even more...

    On November 2, 1541, Cranmer confronted Henry with the allegations about Howard's indiscretions. Henry at first did not believe the allegations. Dereham and Culpeper confessed to their part in these relationships after being tortured, and Henry abandoned Howard. Cranmer zealously pursued the case against Howard. She was charged with "unchastity" before her marriage and with concealing her precontract and her indiscretions from the king before their marriage, thereby committing treason. She was also accused of adultery, which for a queen consort was also treason. A number of Howard's relatives were also questioned about her past, and some were charged with treasonous acts for concealing her sexual past. These relatives were all pardoned, though some lost their property. On November 23, Howard's title of queen was stripped from her. Culpeper and Dereham were executed on December 10 and their heads displayed on London Bridge.

    On January 21, 1542, Parliament passed a bill of attainder making Howard's actions an executable offense. She was taken to the Tower of Londonon February 10, Henry signed the bill of attainder, and she was executed on the morning of February 13. Like her cousin Anne Boleyn, also beheaded for treason, Howard was buried without any marker in the chapel of St Peter ad Vincula. During Queen Victoria's reign in the 19th century, both bodies were exhumed and identified, and their resting places were marked. Jane Boleyn, Lady Rochford, was also beheaded. She was buried with Howard.

    Historians and scholars have struggled to reach a consensus about Howard, with some describing her as a deliberate troublemaker and others characterizing her as an innocent victim of King Henry's rages. Howardhas been depicted in a variety of plays, films, and television series, including "The Private Life of Henry VIII" and "The Tudors." Ford Madox Ford wrote a fictionalized version of her life in the novel "The Fifth Queen."

    Crawford, Anne. "Letters of the Queens of England, 1100-1547." Alan Sutton, 1994.
    Fraser, Antonia. "The Wives of Henry VIII." 1993.
    Weir, Alison. "The Six Wives of Henry VIII." Grove Weidenfeld, 1991.
    • Jone Johnson Lewis
    • Women's History Writer
  2. 20/07/2020 · Facts about Catherine (aka Katherine) Howard, the fifth wife of Henry VIII, who married the Tudor king on 28 July 1540, just three weeks after his six-month marriage to Anne of Cleves was annulled, and was charged with treason and executed at the Tower of London on 13 February 1542.

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    Catherine Howard was a cousin of Henry VIIIs ill-fated second queen, Anne Boleyn; and like Anne, Catherine would die on the scaffold at Tower Green. Her birthdate is unknown, but her father was the younger brother of the duke of Norfolk. Though personally impoverished, Catherine had a powerful family name and thus secured an appointment as lady-in-waiting to Henrys fourth queen, Anne of Cleves. While at court, she caught the eye of the middle-aged king and became a political pawn of her family and its Catholic allies. Catherines greatest crime was her silliness. Raised in the far too permissive household of her grandmother, she was a flirtatious and emotional girl who rarely understood the consequences of her actions. She made the mistake of continuing her girlish indiscretions as queen. Henry was besotted with her, calling her his Rose without a Thorn and showering her with gifts and public affection. Catherine was understandably more attracted to men her own age and, after just seventeen months of marriage to the king, she was arrested for adultery. The distraught king at first refused to believe the evidence but it was persuasive. Unlike Anne Boleyn, Catherine had betrayed the king. She was beheaded on 13 February 1542, only nineteen or twenty years old. The drama of her execution lends gravity to a brief life which would otherwise pass unnoticed.

    Catherine Howards short life is one of the great cautionary tales of Henry VIIIs reign; there is about it something strangely pathetic and small, but also powerful and moving. Catherine was neither particularly beautiful or intelligent, but she was a charming, flirtatious girl who rose, virtually overnight, from obscurity to become queen of England. It is important to remember that Henrys previous English queens, Anne Boleyn and Jane Seymour, had spent years in royal service before marrying their king. They were veterans of the English court and knew the intricacies and dangers of their position. Catherine was a mere child by contrast, barely literate, and born in a later generation. But for the conservative faction at Henrys court, those dedicated to the restoration of the Catholic faith as practiced before the Reformation, she was their last, best hope. Unlike Anne Boleyn, Catherines personal and political success was not tied to the Protestant faith. She had been raised Catholic by her Norfolk grandmother and, despite her personal lapses, she represented the conservative faith to others. And the king was ignorant for a surprisingly long time. For his part, Culpeper was using Catherines infatuation to further his own ambitions. He was not a particularly gentlemanly gentleman. In fact, he had brutally raped a park-keepers wife, ordering three of his servants to hold her down during the attack; he also murdered a villager who tried to save her. He had been pardoned by the king, but it is one of the few facts we know about Culpeper and not a pleasant one. His ambitions regarding Catherine undoubtedly stemmed from Henry VIIIs ill health. If the king died, then the queen dowager would maintain some influence and power at court. Before that inevitable day, she could give him as many expensive gifts as he desired. Did Catherine love Culpeper? She undoubtedly did, at least as much as her immature view of love allowed. He was handsome, very charming, if only in a superficial manner, and he complemented and cajoled her. She became increasingly open in her affection, enough to worry Culpeper himself. As a gentleman of the privy chamber, he knew the kings moods better than anyone and had no desire to risk much for Catherine. Catherine Howard did not have an impact upon English history. She is perhaps the most inconsequential of Henry VIIIs six wives, her reign as queen a very brief eighteen months. She bore no children and made no lasting impression upon those who knew her. But it should be remembered that she was thirty years younger than her husband, a silly young girl who never understood the dangers of royal regard. Her life was over before it had truly begun; we can only wonder how it might have ended differently.

    She was the daughter of the 2d duke of Norfolks youngest son, Edmund, and his wife, Jocasta (Joyce) Culpeper. She was one of too many children for her impoverished parents and the date of her birth was not recorded; most historians believe it was 1521. Edmund was not an auspicious individual and, like most younger sons, spent most of his life in constant need of money. He complained to the kings chief minister Thomas Cromwell that he wished to be a poor mans son for at least then he could work without shame. But he was an aristocrat, a member of one of the greatest noble families of England, and he could do little but beg for help from one relation to another. He sent his daughter to live with her grandmother, the dowager duchess of Norfolk, and thus avoided responsibility for Catherines upbringing. This should not reflect badly upon him since it was typical of the times; and though Catherines grandmother complained ceaselessly about the expense of supporting numerous grandchildren, she did provide a comfortable home. She did not, however, provide strict supervision a fact which would have dire consequences for the entire Norfolk family after Catherine became queen.

    Catherine later swore the relationship was not consummated. At the flattering and fair persuasions of Mannox being but a young girl I suffered him at sundry times to handle and touch the secret parts of my body which neither became me with honesty to permit nor him to require, she later told interrogators. Mannox admitted the same. Since Catherine later confessed to more serious transgressions, there was no reason for her to lie in this instance. And one can certainly condemn Mannox for taking advantage of his young student. Catherine was demoted from her position as Queen on 22 November and formally indicted two days later for leading an abominable, base, carnal, voluptuous and vicious life. She remained at Syon House for the next two months. On 10 December, Dereham paid a horrific penalty for his crimes; he was hung, drawn, and quartered (disemboweled and castrated while still conscious) as a traitor. Culpeper was also executed that day, though he suffered a more merciful beheading; this was ordered by the king, perhaps because of Culpepers higher rank and personal service in his household. Their heads were fixed on spears atop London Bridge and remained there as late as 1546. Catherine, meanwhile, continued in a state of suspended hysteria. Her various relatives were sent to the Tower, including the elderly dowager duchess. Only the duke survived, having sufficiently humbled himself before Henry. Perhaps the executions of Dereham and Culpeper had brought a newfound maturity to Catherine. She was content to remain quietly at Syon House, though it was clear the king could not allow it. On 21 January the House of Lords passed an Act of Attainder and it received the kings approval on 11 February. It was intended to answer the question vexing them all of what exactly was Catherine Howard guilty? If she had been precontracted to Dereham, then she was never married to the king and thus not guilty of adultery. But in a speech on 6 February, Henry made it clear that the new Act could punish those who intended to commit treason (or adultery, since adultery in a queen was treason.) It was this intent which sealed Catherines fate.

    As a mere music teacher, Mannox was too far below her in social status for a serious relationship to develop. Though he followed the duchesss household to London in 1538, Catherines attentions soon turned elsewhere. She fell in love with a gentleman-pensioner in her grandmothers household named Francis Dereham. This relationship was far more serious and undoubtedly consummated. There is much evidence on this point, including Catherines own confession: Francis Dereham by many persuasions procured me to his vicious purpose and obtained first to lie upon my bed with his doublet and hose and after within the bed and finally he lay with me naked and used me in such sort as a man doth his wife many and sundry times but how often I know not. Their affair continued throughout 1538. They addressed one another as husband and wife and when Dereham was sent to Ireland on business, he left 100 pds in Catherines keeping. But Mannox, still with the household, was infuriated; his attraction to Catherine continued while she spurned his company for Derehams. In revenge, he sent an anonymous note to the dowager duchess. She then discovered Catherine and Dereham together and there was a frightful scene. But a physical relationship between a betrothed couple was not uncommon by sixteenth-century standards and Catherine and Dereham parted with some understanding of marriage when he returned from Ireland. But, unluckily for Dereham, Catherines heart cooled towards him while he was away. And in 1539, having moved closer to court and staying at her uncles house, she met Thomas Culpeper. A gentleman of the kings Privy Chamber and cousin of Catherines mother Joyce Culpeper, he was a handsome and charming young man; his position in court was considered important since it allowed personal access to the king. Catherine fell in love with him, though Culpepers own feelings are not known. Catherines family was powerful and she was an attractive girl. It is likely that he was at least interested in her, if not immediately infatuated. But then the great event occurred which was to change Catherines life forever. She arrived at court in late 1539 or early 1540 as a lady-in-waiting to Anne of Cleves and Henry VIII fell in love with her. Catherines relatives questioned her maturity, but they were not willing to risk the kings wrath by pointing it out. Henry VIII was mercurial and dangerous, and his latest marriage was a bitter disappointment. Woe to the courtier who spoke ill of his latest attraction! It was left to the Norfolk clan to coach Catherine as best they could and hope their triumph would last. The king soon publicly favored young Mistress Howard. On 24 April she was given lands seized from a felon; a few weeks later, she received an expensive gift of quilted sarcanet. It is possible their relationship was consummated around this time for there was a sudden urgency to annul the ill-fated marriage to Anne of Cleves. The kings advisors soon found a valid impediment to the fourth marriage and, on 13 July 1540, it was officially ended by Parliament. Meanwhile, the French ambassador reported rumors that Catherine was pregnant. The king had one son and heir but the vagaries of life in the 16th century made another heir necessary. Henry had just turned forty-nine years old and half his subjects were eighteen or younger. The security of his realm was his greatest concern and it could only be guaranteed by legitimate heirs; as a second son himself, he knew the life of young Prince Edward was a slender thread upon which to balance a dynasty. Henry married Catherine on 28 July 1540 at Oatlands Palace in Surrey. The ceremony was a success, albeit lacking in the usual pomp and display of royal unions. Catherine was never crowned queen of England. Henry VIII simply couldnt afford the ceremony; perhaps, too, he wished to wait until the marriage proved successful in the most important way and Catherine bore him a son. The king consulted his council on creating a new succession should the blessed event occur, pushing his daughters Mary and Elizabeth even further from the throne. Catherine was not pregnant in the summer of 1540, nor did she become so. But the king was so physically affectionate with her in public that none doubted the happy event would occur. Still, warning signs about this hasty marriage had already begun. Catherines relationship with Dereham had never been kept secret, though Henry was perhaps unaware of it. His courtiers gossiped and wondered. Joan Bulmer, a young woman who had lived with Catherine at Lambeth, requested that Catherine bring her to court to share in her great destiny; it was a subtle blackmail. In August 1541, Dereham was made her secretary, perhaps as a bribe to keep quiet about their former relationship. So even as she collected rich gifts of gowns, jewels, fur cloaks, and golden clocks, Catherine knew her indecorous past lurked in the background. Was she worried? As her later behavior showed, she was not. But he was not immune to illness and in the spring of 1541, the king fell low with a serious fever and Catherine was sent away for her own safety. It was around this time that she began her affair with Culpeper, the handsome young man who had caught her fancy two years before; as evidence, we need only read her only surviving letter, written to Culpeper in April 1541. When the king recovered, he took Catherine on a royal progress through the north of England and again the French ambassador reported rumors of her pregnancy. It was even suggested that, should the condition be confirmed, Catherine would be crowned at York Minster. These rumors prove that Henry still made love to his wife on a somewhat regular basis. And for her part, Catherine was confident she could meddle with a man without pregnancy, which made her relationship with Culpeper safe. He and Dereham both traveled in the progress as members of the royal household. In Catherines rather simple view of marriage, as long as she and the king were happy, nothing else mattered. And since the king would be happy as long as he was ignorant, all would be well.

    It is clear from Catherines life before meeting the king that she was a flirtatious and emotional girl. It is also clear that she possessed the charm and sexual allure to attract men. These were to be her greatest strengths and weaknesses, for while they attracted the king, they also led her into increasingly reckless behavior. If she had married Dereham or Culpeper, or any other social-climber, she would have remained a gossip and flirt, perhaps she would have succumbed to adultery. But behavior that could be tolerated in a poor niece of a duke was treason in a queen of England.

    Catherines family was torn between elation and trepidation with regard to Henrys infatuation. The Norfolk name was one of the oldest in England. They had supported Richard III against the first Tudor king, Henry VII, but managed to win favor with their military prowess and servile devotion to the new dynasty. But Henry VIII never fully trusted Thomas Howard, the 3d duke of Norfolk, though he wed two of Norfolks nieces. Their grand name, then, was both blessing and curse. As an old family in a court of upstarts and fond of feudal prerogative, Catherines relatives had made wary friends and bitter enemies at court. And the divisive reign of Anne Boleyn, herself no friend of her Norfolk relations (the duke presided over her trial), had taught them all to tread carefully about the king. And Catherines personality worried them. Could she sustain the kings attraction? And, if so, could she become a mature and successful queen?

    The next year was an Indian summer in the kings life. Catherine chose as her motto Non autre volonte que la sienne (No other wish but his or No other will than his) and did her best to amuse and distract him. The waste of lives and exorbitant money fighting France had depressed the English treasury and the kings spirits. And the Reformation had cost him the love of the common people. Henry also increasingly suffered from the ailments which would kill him a few years later. He had severe headaches and pains throughout his body; he found it difficult to sleep and was often impotent.

    English politics had become another headache for the king. His great advisor and friend, Thomas Cromwell, had championed the Protestant cause and the union with Anne of Cleves. The kings disappointment and the endless conniving of Cromwells enemies led to his arrest and execution on the very day Henry and Catherine married. Within a few months, the king openly lamented the loss of his most faithful servant.

    She was not merely collecting personal finery, but also lands and manors that had once belonged to Jane Seymour and even Thomas Cromwell. And she began to explore the traditional role of the queen as patroness. She also took great care to ensure her aged husbands happiness. Many biographers have speculated on Catherines true feelings for Henry VIII. She probably did not love him in the most romantic sense of the word, but she did love him for the affection and generosity he showed her. And she also approached him with something of an awed reverence, for he was the king and thus a quasi-mystical figure, all-knowing and all-powerful.

    On 2 November, while Henry attended a Mass for All Souls Day, Cranmer passed him a letter with the charges. The king was immediately perplexed and believed the letter was a forgery. This was his first and thoroughly honest reaction; Catherine had deceived him well. He ordered Cranmer to keep the matter private and began an investigation. It took but a few days for Catherines house of cards to come tumbling down.

    An assortment of female servants were arrested and sent to the Tower, as was Dereham. He was tortured; he confessed his earlier relationship and named Culpeper as the queens current lover. Culpeper was then arrested, tortured, and confessed.

    Cranmer was given the distasteful task of interrogating the terrified girl. She was hysterical, convinced she would be executed like her cousin; even the archbishop felt pity for her condition. Perhaps he suggested an option to Henry VIII that he had first proposed for Anne Boleyn let Catherine admit her sins, annul the marriage, and send her away. The Dereham precontract was the perfect excuse. Catherine need only admit its existence and her life would be spared. It was the kings most gracious mercy and her only possible chance for survival. But Catherine, frightened and lacking any counsel, did not realize that the precontract would save her life. Instead, she was convinced it would be used to condemn her. And so, even as she admitted to carnal copulation with Dereham, she stressed his importune forcement and violence. She and Cranmer wanted the same end but talked at odds. And it was possible, too, that Henry VIII had never intended to spare her life.

    Indeed, with each day that passed, the king was less inclined to show mercy. The floodgates had opened and ever more scurrilous rumors were heard about his Rose without a thorn.

    On Friday, 10 February 1542, the duke of Suffolk arrived to take Catherine to the Tower of London. The hysterical frenzy returned; she struggled and had to be forced aboard the barge. She was dressed in black velvet and lodged in the Queens Apartments, though no longer queen. On Sunday night, she was informed that she would be executed the next day. Her only request was that the block be brought to her for she wished to know how to place herself. It was to be her last act on a grand stage; she would die with all the dignity and composure possible. Around seven oclock on Monday, 13 February, several privy councilors arrived as escort. Her uncle Norfolk was not among them, having wisely withdrawn to his country estates. Catherine was weak and frightened and had to be helped up the steps to the scaffold. But once there, she made a small, quiet speech regarding her worthy and just punishment; she prayed for the kings preservation and for Gods forgiveness. The actual execution was over quickly. Catherines body was interred at the nearby chapel of St Peter ad Vincula.

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  3. Catherine Marie "Cat" Howard (October 28, 1995-September 25, 2020) was an American TikTok personality who alongside with her sister Kristi were known as the Howard sisters. She tragically died from an overdose of drugs.

  4. Catalina Howard (hacia 1523-13 de febrero de 1542) fue reina consorte de Inglaterra desde 1540 hasta 1541 como esposa de Enrique VIII.. Catalina era hija de Lord Edmund Howard y Joyce Culpeper, además de prima de Ana Bolena (segunda esposa de Enrique VIII) y sobrina de Thomas Howard, III duque de Norfolk, quien era un político prominente en la corte del rey, asegurando a Catalina un lugar en ...

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