Parr, Catherine

Parr, Catherine, 1512–48, sixth queen consort of Henry VIII of England. She was the daughter of Sir Thomas Parr, an officeholder at the court, and had been twice widowed before Henry made her his wife in 1543. She exerted a beneficent influence over the aging king, interceding in behalf of Henry's daughters, Mary and Elizabeth (whom she helped to educate), and served for a time as queen regent (1544). At one point Catherine's Protestant sympathies placed her in danger, but she lived to become queen dowager and to wield considerable power at the start of the reign of Henry's son, Edward VI. She married (1547) Baron Seymour of Sudeley but died in childbirth the next year.

See J. Mueller, ed., Katherine Parr: Complete Works and Correspondence (2011); biographies by A. Martienssen (1974) and L. Porter (2010).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2024, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: British and Irish History: Biographies