Thank you, Ms. Middleton for reintroducing the wonder of the name Kate to British royalty. It seems that one monarch in particular was especially partial to the name. Of Henry VIII’s six wives, three were Kates. The king had the great taste to not only begin, but also end his life of abundant matrimony with the oh-so-kissable kind, in order of vows: Catherine of Aragon (1st), Kathryn Howard (5th), and Katherine Parr (6th).
The only one to escape the fickle foisting from the bridal bed was Parr, a religious author of repute. Although born a commoner, Par was appointed regent by her less than trusting husband after only a year of marriage, and ruled England for three months while Henry was away on campaign in France. By all accounts—and by the continuance of her head on her shoulders—Parr acted well in the king’s steed.
Religious differences momentarily caused a snag in their relationship (sympathies to the Protestant reformation movement were definitely hazardous to the Catholic’s health), but the evidence of Kate’s loyalty quickly won out. She outlived Henry, whose gout and ulcer ridden body she had tended for three (apparently long and puss-filled) years. For her devoutness to both faith and family, Henry VIII specified that upon his death Par was to be given an unheard of annual allowance of £7,000 and the continuing respect of Queen of England.
All Hail, Queen Kate!