No Other Will Than His
“Divorced, Beheaded, Died, Divorced, Beheaded, Survived”
Born: Katherine’s date of birth is unknown. Alison Weir believes that a birthdate c. 1525 is probable, although other historians believe c. 1521.
Father: Lord Edmund Howard, a younger brother of Thomas Howard, Duke of Norfolk. (Katherine Howard and Anne Boleyn were first cousins)
Mother: Joyce Culpeper
Married Henry VIII on 28 July 1540 at Oatlands Palace in Surrey.
The ceremony was conducted in private by Bishop Bonner and kept secret for approximately ten days.
Reign: 28 July 1540 – 22 November 1541
Confined to her apartments at Hampton Court Palace: On 30 October 1541, Cranmer informed Henry, via a letter, that his new Queen was accused of ‘dissolute living before her marriage with Francis Dereham’. The King ordered Cranmer to thoroughly investigate the claims and confined Katherine to her apartments with only one attendant, Lady Rochford.
Henry and Katherine did not see each other again after this day.
Imprisonment: On or just after 13 November 1541, Katherine Howard was moved to Syon Abbey.
Stripped of the title of Queen: On the 22 November, a proclamation was made at Hampton Court Palace that Katherine had ‘forfeited her honour’ and was no longer Queen.
Bill of Attainder: Passed on 7 February 1542
Moved to the Tower of London: 10 February 1542
The Act of Attainder still lacked the King’s signature. To save Henry any further distress his Council signified Henry’s royal assent by attaching the Great Seal and writing on the top of the Act, ‘Le Roy le veut’ – ‘The King wills it.’
Royal Assent Proclaimed: 11 February 1542
The Act was read in parliament to the assembled members of both Houses, stating the King’s assent, signalling that Katherine’s execution could now take place.
Executed: 13 February 1542
Private execution, Tower of London
Beheaded with an axe
Buried: 13 February 1542
Chapel of St. Peter ad. Vincula at the Tower of London.
Reversal of the Act of Attainder: In 1553, Queen Mary reversed the Act of Attainder against Katherine Howard on the basis that it did not bear the royal signature and such acts were no longer legal.
Link to The Ghost of Katherine Howard
Baldwin-Smith. L, E. Catherine Howard: The Queen Whose Adulteries Made a Fool of Henry VIII, 2009.
Weir, A. The Six Wives of Henry VIII, 2007.
More books about Katherine Howard at On the Tudor Trail’s Bookstore