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AragornElessar
03-22-2011, 11:14 PM
Anorexic?

I was reading my copy of Royalty Magazine last night that commemorates William and Kate's Engagement and there's quite the interesting tidbit mini article in there about Katherine of Aragorn.

Apparently, researchers have found letters sent by Pope Julius II to the Prince of Wales (Whether this is Arthur or Henry isn't clear) to let his concerns about the religious fervour of the Princess of Wales and her health be known. Apparently, Katherine was going overboard, in his eyes, when it came to her fasting ritiuals. To the point she was ignoring his orders when it came to not going through w/fasts so often.

Here's the *really* interesting thing...

They're wondering this. If Katherine was fasting so often and not eating as well as she should have been eating due to the restraints of whatever fasting ritual she was following at the time...Could this actually have been a form of Anorexia/Bulimia and *this* was the real cause of the fertitlity problems Katherine and Henry had?

It makes sense when you think of it. If Katherine wasn't eating due to doing a fast, *and* she was pregnant, the baby wouldn't be getting that vital nutrition it needed and in turn...A still born baby.

Dad turned to me when I let out a "Oh my GOSH!!!" after I'd read that wondering if I hadn't lost it. :D After I had him read the little tidbit article, he looked at me w/that same realization of shock and says to me, "That could explain everything right there!!"

It could too. Just putting that out there for discussion.

genevieve
03-22-2011, 11:16 PM
what exactly would be changed if it turns out she was anorexic?

IceAlisa
03-22-2011, 11:21 PM
what exactly would be changed if it turns out she was anorexic?

It would be of interest to both Tudor and medical historians, I would imagine.

I am not aware of cases of anorexia going so far back in history but who knows. It would certainly be interesting if confirmed.

BigB08822
03-22-2011, 11:28 PM
Would it be anorexia as we know it today? If she was just so completely fervent in her religious beliefs, it certainly wouldn't fit the idea of anorexia that we have today. She wasn't doing it because of fear of gaining weight. I find that hard to believe because wasn't it seen as a good thing to be a little plump because it meant you had the money to afford to eat more than needed? Something like that. I just doubt she was doing it for physical reasons but more for spiritual and to me that is a different issue than anorexia. However, it could very well explain her child bearing issues.

IceAlisa
03-22-2011, 11:31 PM
Well, anorexia really only means lack of appetite. While in modern setting it is associated with preoccupation with one's weight and body dysmorphic disorder, it doesn't have to.

Anorexia nervosa is a more specific name for the weight-related eating disorder.

victoriajh
03-23-2011, 12:07 AM
interesting for sure- but Henry was believed to be the one with the challenges in the fertility department!! lol I was watching the Tudors last night- man i wish they had also done Elizabeth and Mary's reigns as well- that show was epic!

IceAlisa
03-23-2011, 12:11 AM
interesting for sure- but Henry was believed to be the one with the challenges in the fertility department!!

That is unlikely since he did have children by other wives and mistresses. Also, Anne Boleyn does fit the profile of the Rh factor problem. I don't think we will ever know for sure.

attyfan
03-23-2011, 12:12 AM
Also, I doubt that Katherine would have been fasting while pregnant. Furthermore, considering that Anne Boleyn also had several miscarriages, I doubt that the problem was Katherine's.

oleada
03-23-2011, 12:19 AM
Anne Boleyn is speculated to have been RH-, and Henry VIII to have been RH+, hence the complications in the pregnancies following Elizabeth's birth. I doubt that had anything to do with Henry, nor did it have anything to do with Katherine.

Later in life when he was obese and ill, yes, I believe that had to do with him, but not with his first wives. Jane Seymour and possibly the deaths of the early children with Katherine of Aragon are attributed to the lack of hygienic conditions at the time.

IceAlisa
03-23-2011, 12:23 AM
Later in life when he was obese and ill, yes, I believe that had to do with him, but not with his first wives. Jane Seymour and possibly the deaths of the early children with Katherine of Aragon are attributed to the lack of hygienic conditions at the time.

Infant and maternal perinatal mortality was generally high at the time due to various reasons.

oleada
03-23-2011, 12:26 AM
Infant and maternal perinatal mortality was generally high at the time due to various reasons.

Yeah, you're right. I was referring to the fact that Janey Seymour was speculated to have died from an infected perineum, and I think there were some hygenic corners re: the first son too.

dbell1
03-23-2011, 12:28 AM
I read that she was quite fat near the end. But, if she was thin in the beginning, remember that Henry VII kept her dowry (from the Arthur debacle), left her to pawn her own plate for household money while looking around for better offers for Henry. Only when VII died, did her lot in life improve (or not, considering what VIII did to her). Must suck to be a princess by birth and then marry a philandering jackass. Of course, 3 of the next 4 didn't make it out of the marriage alive. :yikes:

attyfan
03-23-2011, 12:47 AM
Anne Boleyn is speculated to have been RH-, and Henry VIII to have been RH+, hence the complications in the pregnancies following Elizabeth's birth. I doubt that had anything to do with Henry, nor did it have anything to do with Katherine.

Later in life when he was obese and ill, yes, I believe that had to do with him, but not with his first wives. Jane Seymour and possibly the deaths of the early children with Katherine of Aragon are attributed to the lack of hygienic conditions at the time.

Henry set down a lot of hygenic rules and restrictions (including frequent cleanings of everything) when households were set up, for his three surviving children ... so I am sure he did the same for the children that did not live as long.

You are right, that the Rh issue is unique to Anne, just as the (possibility) of anorexia would be unique to Katherine. However, often times a common result (lots of miscarriages), indicates a common cause (something about Henry)

However, a lot of the evidence indicating fertility troubles on Henry's part is debateable. For example, historians disagree as to when Henry had his affair with Mary Boleyn ... and if so, whether he was the father of her two children (one of whom was a son, BTW). Certainly, the number of illegitimate children he may have had bears on whether or not he had fertility problems.

oleada
03-23-2011, 12:50 AM
Henry had one illegitimate son that I can remember - Henry Fitzroy. Personally, I don't think Mary Boleyn's kids are his, but that's my non-historian opinion. It's been a while since I re-read or read anything new on that era.

Japanfan
03-23-2011, 01:49 AM
One thing I've always wondered about - how difficult it must have been for women to use the toilet in the days prior to plumbing, especially given the types and layers of clothing they had to deal with. Maybe there were hooks on the walls of outhouses for skirts. I've also heard that women used the bathroom in pairs.

I would think it would be natural to become very controlled with eating and drinking habits if you faced that difficulty. It's not the same thing as an eating disorder, but could certainly lead to an eating disorder.