Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Margaret Beaufort and Margaret Pole

Two ladies of royal blood.To quote from Once I Was A Clever Boy:
Both were devout women - examples of the aristocratic piety of the age, which included Cicely Duchess of York, grandmother of Countess Margaret, and later on Queen Catherine of Aragon and Queen Mary I. Both were patrons of the Church and learning. In John Fisher, as Lady Margaret's confessor and counsellor, and Reginald Pole, Countess Margaret's son, they had contact with two of the leading English churchmen of the age, both of whom were to become Cardinals.

As women of high birth they were seen as authoritative on precedence and ceremony in the case of Margaret Beaufort, whilst Margaret Pole was not only a lady-in-waiting to Queen Catherine, but chosen as governess to the Princess Mary when she was seen as heiress apparent in the 1520s.

Margaret Pole was beatified as a martyr in 1886, and it is perhaps surprising that no-one appears to have sought the beatification of Lady Margaret - being Henry VIII's grandmother should not be held against her. I strongly suspect that she would disapprove very strongly of his actions, and given the opportunity in the afterlife to tell him so would not hesitate so to do.

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