- Fourth wife King Henry VIII & Stepmother to Queen Elizabeth I
- Lifespan: 1515 - 1557
- Born: 1515 in Dusseldorf, Cleves in Germany
- Married: 6 January 1540
- Divorced: July 1540
- Died: 16 July 1557
- Family connections: Her father was John III of Cleves and her mother was Marie of Julich. Her brother, William, was the Duke of Cleves
- Religion: Protestant
- Character of Anne of Cleves : Good humored, intelligent, sensible and kind
- Appearance of Anne of Cleves: She wore German fashions when she met Henry which were deemed to be unsophisticated. The small pox scars which she bore were not included in her flattering portrait painted by Hans Holbein. King Henry VIII is reputed to have described Anne of Cleves as 'a fat Flanders Mare'
Information, Facts & History about the life of Anne of Cleves - Fourth wife King Henry VIII & Stepmother to Queen Elizabeth I
The following are additional facts about the life and history of Anne of Cleves - Fourth wife King Henry VIII & Stepmother to Queen Elizabeth I:
Tudor Timeline of Anne of Cleves
- Anne of Cleves was a Protestant German Princess who was born in Dusseldorf, Cleves in Germany.
- The education of Anne of Cleves was quite basic and she was not well tutored in music, literature or languages
- There were three sisters in the family of Cleves and Hans Holbein, a famous Tudor court painter, was sent to paint the pictures of Sybilla, Amelia and Anne
- King Henry VIII chose Princess Anne of Cleves
- The marriage treaty with Cleves was finalized
- Anne of Cleves travelled to England and Henry rushed to meet his young bride. The portrait was over-complimentary to Anne - Holbein had reflected her sweet nature in the portrait but Anne of Cleves was not what Henry expected. "I like her not." he told all and sundry
- But King Henry could not get out of the marriage contract and the marriage ceremony went ahead - he protested all the way.
- The marriage was not consummated. Poor, innocent 19 year old Anne believed that all was well. She barely spoke English and was not wise in the ways of the world or of relationships between husband and wife
- She then learnt that her husband wanted the marriage annulled and a divorce. Anne of Cleves cooperated completely with Henry's wishes - she was a clever woman and shrewd enough to take account of the demise of his previous wives. And Henry was not a great catch. He was 48 years old, fat, bloated and well past his prime. The good looks of his youth had faded. Henry of course still believed he was the handsome prince and that Anne would be difficult
- Henry VIII was so pleased with Ann of Cleves agreeing to a divorce that he granted her money and estates and treated her with the deference that would be afforded to his Royal 'Sister'
- King Henry VIII and Anne of Cleves were divorced in July 1540
- Anne of Cleves had emerged from the marriage to King Henry VIII far happier than when she had entered it.
- The divorce settlement was highly favorable. Anne of Cleves was given various properties , including Hever Castle the home of Anne Boleyn
- She lived in England for the rest of her life and attended various functions at court. She became one of the wealthiest and most powerful women in England. She was a kind stepmother to all of the children of King Henry VIII
The Anne of Cleves timeline details the key dates and events in her life story.
1515 September 22: Anne of Cleves was born in Dusseldorf, Cleves in Germany
1537 October 24: Queen Jane Seymour died and King Henry VIII went into a period of mourning
1538: Thomas Cromwell, began searching for foreign bride for Henry. He favored a political alliance providing an ally for England in the event of potential ally in the event of Catholic France and the Holy Roman Empire moving against Protestant England
1539 Spring: Hans Holbein a famous Tudor court painter, was sent to paint the pictures of the princess sister of Cleves - Sybilla, Amelia and Anne
1539 August: Hans Holbein returned to England and King Henry VIII chose the portrait of Anne as the most favorable
1539 October 6: The marriage treaty with Cleves was finalized
1539 December 11: Anne arrived at Calais
1539 December 27: Anne of Cleves landed at Deal and then travelled to Rochester
1540: January 1: King Henry VIII met his bride in person - the Hans Holbein painting did not match Ann of Cleves in person
1540 January 6: The wedding between Henry VIII and Anne of Cleves took place on January 6th
1540 July 9: English Parliament declared the marriage between Henry and Anne as null and void because Anne had once been engaged to the son of the Duke of Lorraine
1540 - 1557: Anne of Cleves became one of the wealthiest women in Tudor England. She lived a happy and honored life and was extremely kind to the children of Henry VIII
1557 October 24: Anne of Cleves died at Chelsea Old Palace, England and was buried in Westminster Abbey
Influence of Anne of Cleves - Fourth wife King Henry VIII & Stepmother to Queen Elizabeth I on the life of Queen Elizabeth?
Anne of Cleves was an extremely kind step mother to Elizabeth with whom she had frequent contact.