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The Tudor Society

22 March – Catherine Brandon (Catherine Willoughby), Duchess of Suffolk, a woman with spirit!

Today is the anniversary of the traditional birthdate of Catherine Willoughby (married names: Brandon and Bertie), Duchess of Suffolk, the woman who married the king's best friend, Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk, when she was just fourteen.

Catherine is known for her patronage of the Reformed faith and Reformers, but in today's video, I share some facts about this fascinating woman, including a story about her little dog.

Also on this day in history:

  • 1459 – Birth of Maximilian I, Holy Roman Emperor, at Wiener Neustadt. He was the son of Frederick III, Holy Roman Emperor, and Eleanor of Portugal, and became Holy Roman Emperor in 1493. He was married to Mary of Burgundy, and was the father of Margaret of Austria and Philip I of Castile (Philip the Handsome).
  • 1515 – Death of James Stanley, Bishop of Ely and son of Thomas Stanley, 1st Earl of Derby, at Manchester. He was buried in the Ely Chapel of the collegiate church, which is now Manchester Cathedral. Stanley owed his rise in the Church to his father and his stepmother, Lady Margaret Beaufort, mother of Henry VII.
  • 1580 – Burial of Henry Fitzalan, 12th Earl of Arundel, at Arundel's collegiate chapel.
  • 1582 – Burial of William Bourne, gunner, mathematician and writer, at Gravesend. His works included “Almanacke and Prognostication for iii Yeres”, “A Regiment for the Sea”, “Treasure for Traveilers”, “The Arte of Shooting in Great Ordnance” and “Inventions, or, Devises”.
  • 1599 – Birth of Sir Anthony Van Dyck, painter and etcher, in Antwerp.

There are 4 comments Go To Comment

  1. M /

    Oh, I agree! I have been fascinated by Catherine Brandon since the Tudors! (I know, I know it’s all false. Haha). And through her, re-ignites my interest in Charles Brandon). I do find her courageous, I really do. To walk around court with this dog following her and saying “heel, Gardiner”, is totally hilarious, yet there’s an element of danger there. Bishop Gardiner was not a nice man. Anyway, thanks for sharing. Michelle t

  2. R /

    I love Catherine Willoughby, she is such a radical character and her adventures fascinating. Love the dog, which is the most famous story about her. She was also very fiery.

    1. R /

      Catherine was also proposed to by the King of Poland.

    2. < / Post Author

      She is one of those Tudor characters who really intrigues me.

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22 March – Catherine Brandon (Catherine Willoughby), Duchess of Suffolk, a woman with spirit!