Anne of Cleves the German Step mother to Mary Queen of France

Anne of Cleves was King Henry VIII of England’s fourth wife in the 1500’s. He thought she was ugly and had the marriage annulled after marrying her to avoid a war with Germany or Duke William of CLeves in Germany. Anne got a great annulment settlement from the King the Castle that belonged to Ann Boelyn and two other great homes plus 3,000 crowns a month allowance.

She asked the King to allow his daughter Elizabeth to visit her in her castle often and he agreed. She was 24 and a year older than Mary the oldest daughter of King Henry by Katherine of Aragon the King’s first wife.


History shows that Anne had a considerable influence on both Elizabeth who was to become Elizabeth I the Queen and Mary I also the Queen when the King’s son Arthur died at the age of 15.

What exactly she taught Princesses Mary and Elizabeth proves a mystery.  Anne adopted the English catholic ways to please the King although in Germany she was not a catholic however.

Anne outlived the King and lived to see her friend and step-daughter Mary I become Queen in the coronation.

After King henry VIII died the allowance was reduced and the young King under the influence of his uncle the Duke, gave away some of Anne’s homes leaving her in financial straits. She even asked her brother the Duke of Cleves to loan her money. Fortunately the young King Arthur died at age 15 and Mary the eldest daughter claimed the throne. Anne was in favor once more and Mary restored Anne’s properties and allowance so she could live like an ex-Queen again.

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