Well then tomorrow, or today, depending on when you read this, there will be a royal wedding. When I was born King George VI was on the throne. By the time I was three Elizabeth II was on the throne. For many years after, the Royal family continued in an almost Victorian manner but then Diana Spencer appeared on the scene. She changed everything and her children have dragged the royal institution into the 21st century.
Having agreed that things have changed for the better, and even though I am a royalist, I will not be tied to the TV tomorrow. Even so God Bless to Harry and Meghan.
Now with the advent of William and Kate's third child, Louis, Harry has dropped to 7th in line of succession and is therefore unlikely to become King Harry.
His name sake Henry VIII was of course famous for his number of wives and the dissolution of the monasteries, which was ultimately to facilitate divorce. Henry's favourite queen was reputedly to be Jane Seymour even though their marriage only lasted 18 months. Let us hope Prince Harry has better luck.
Alison Weir has written a book about Jane Seymour's life and comments that 'Jane had the courage to stand up for what she cared about'. For example she reunited Henry with his daughter Mary but almost came unstuck when she tried to dissuade the king from dissolving the monasteries.
Jane was married to Henry in 1536 the year in which the king's previous wife, Anne Boleyn, was executed. She saw the beginning of the dissolution of the monasteries, then an outbreak of plague in London which terrified the royal couple. In the autumn the Pilgrimage of Grace - a major rebellion against the religious upheavals that Henry had instigated - began in the catholic north. Henry suppressed it with great ruthlessness.
By the time they married Henry had become an embittered and frustrated man. Many of his actions over the years had been involved in producing a male heir which Jane then produced. However, 12 days after the birth of their son, Jane died and the cause of death is a puzzle but is thought to have been a pulmonary embolism. If their son Edward VI had lived longer then Jane may have been more famed for her short-lived influence over the English monarchy.
Enjoy the wedding tomorrow if it is your thing.