The Six Wives of Henry VIIIHenry, perpetually in search of a male heir, went through an incredible six wives. These, and the childrenthey bore, were:Catherine of Aragon (m. June 1509 CE) - Mary (b. Feb. 1516 CE)Anne Boleyn (m. Jan. 1533 CE) - Elizabeth (b. Sep. 1533 CE)Jane Seymour (m. May 1536 CE) - Edward (b. Oct. 1537 CE)Anne of Cleves (m. Jan. 1540 CE)Catherine Howard (m. July 1540 CE)Catherine Parr (m. July 1543 CE)The king’s first marriage to Catherine of Aragon produced six children but all except one died in infancy. The sole survivor was Mary, born on 18 February 1516 CE. Henry had an illegitimate son, Henry Fitzroy, Duke of Richmond (b. 1519 CE), with a mistress, one Elizabeth Blount but that was not much use to a king who craved a recognised heir. The king began looking for a new wife and he found his ideal candidate in Anne Boleyn, younger sister of one of the king’s former conquests. Anne insisted on marrying the king before any thoughts could be entertained of raising a family. Henry’s problem, then, was how to relieve himself of Catherine, an issue known as the king’s ‘great matter’.