Wilhelm V, Anna of Cleves’ Brother

by Heather R. Darsie Please note that this article originally appeared on Medieval Archives. Wilhelm was born on 28 July 1516, the third living child and only son of Maria of Jülich-Berg and Johann III of Cleves- Mark. He was a mere thirteen months younger than his sister Anna, born 28 June 1515, and over four years younger than Sybylla, born 17 January 1512. As the … Continue reading Wilhelm V, Anna of Cleves’ Brother

Happy 505th Birthday, Anna of Cleves!

by Heather R. Darsie On this day of 28 June in 1515, a little baby girl was born in the Holy Roman Empire whose life would be dramatically shaped by international politics. The baby was christened, “Anna,” after her paternal aunt. “Anna” was a family name on her maternal side, as well. Anna of Cleves’ great-grandmother through Maria of Juelich-Berg was Anna of Saxony. Anna … Continue reading Happy 505th Birthday, Anna of Cleves!

Happy 506th Birthday, Anna of Cleves!

by Heather R. Darsie, J.D. On this day of 28 June in 1515, a little baby girl was born in the Holy Roman Empire whose life would be dramatically shaped by international politics. The baby was christened, “Anna,” after her paternal aunt. “Anna” was a family name on her maternal side, as well. Anna of Cleves’ great-grandmother through Maria of Juelich-Berg was Anna of Saxony. … Continue reading Happy 506th Birthday, Anna of Cleves!

What was the Frauenzimmer?

by Heather R. Darsie Please note that this article originally appeared on Tudors Dynasty. In the 15th century, the word “vrouwenzimmer” slowly entered the German lexicon, becoming a fully-fledged concept by the late 15th to early 16th century. Literally meaning “woman’s room,” the word applied to the secondary court which developed around the women of a noble household. The word “Frau,” now simply meaning a woman … Continue reading What was the Frauenzimmer?

The Habsburg-Valois Wars

by Heather R. Darsie The Habsburg-Valois Wars were part of another series of wars. The Italian Wars took place from 1494 to 1559, where the parties struggled for control of the Italian peninsula. The Italian Wars initially started over a spat between Pope Innocent VIII and Ferdinand I of Naples. Ferdinand I did not pay its dues to the Pope, who turned around and excommunicated … Continue reading The Habsburg-Valois Wars

The First Hint of Trouble: An Early Spat Between the Johann II of Cleves and Elector Frederick of Saxony

by Heather R. Darsie This article first appeared on History, the Interesting Bits . Throughout the late 15th and early 16th century, various disputes over territory sprung up across the German-speaking portions of the Holy Roman Empire. In 1517, a new facet of rebellion against the Empire was introduced in Saxony when Martin Luther’s 95 Theses became known. Maximilian I was still the Holy Roman Emperor in … Continue reading The First Hint of Trouble: An Early Spat Between the Johann II of Cleves and Elector Frederick of Saxony

Anna of Cleves’ Maternal Grandparents: Wilhelm IV and III of Jülich-Berg and Sibylle of Brandenburg

by Heather R. Darsie, J. D. Wilhelm of Jülich-Berg was born 9 January 1455 to Gerhard of Jülich-Berg, from the Heimbach branch of the Dukes of Jülich. Gerhard was the son of Wilhelm of Ravensberg and Adelheid von Tecklenburg. When Gerhard’s uncle Adolf of Ravensberg, who eventually became the Duke of Jülich-Berg-Ravensberg, passed away without male issue in 1437, Gerhard became duke. During the late … Continue reading Anna of Cleves’ Maternal Grandparents: Wilhelm IV and III of Jülich-Berg and Sibylle of Brandenburg

The Curious Case of a Misidentified Portrait of Anne Boleyn

by Heather R. Darsie On 13 April 1929, the Supreme Court of New York heard the curious case of Hahn v. Duveen, in which an art collector  named Mrs. Andree Hahn sued an art dealer named Sir Joseph Duveen for slander. At the heart of the issue was an alleged original painting which Ms. Hahn stated depicted Anne Boleyn and was painted by none other … Continue reading The Curious Case of a Misidentified Portrait of Anne Boleyn

The Tomb of Mary, Queen of Scots

by Heather R. Darsie Mary, Queen of Scots lost her life on 8 February 1587. She was not buried for almost a full five months, finally being laid to rest on 5 August 1587 in Peterborough Cathedral. Peterborough Cathedral already had one queen buried there, namely, Katharine of Aragon, buried in 1536. Peterborough Cathedral has an impressive history beginning in 655 BCE, when the site … Continue reading The Tomb of Mary, Queen of Scots

Amalia of Cleves, Sister of Anna of Cleves

by Heather R. Darsie Unknown Woman by Hans Holbein, c. 1539 After just over six months of marriage, on 9 July 1540, Anna von der Mark, more commonly known as Anne of Cleves, was divorced from Henry VIII of England. As part of her reward for acquiescing so easily to Henry’s request, she would forever after be known in England as the Daughter of Cleves … Continue reading Amalia of Cleves, Sister of Anna of Cleves