Darrin & Andrea Lythgoe's Genealogy Pages

Catherine Verch Tudor Ap Robert Of Berain

Catherine Verch Tudor Ap Robert Of Berain

Female 1534 - 1591  (57 years)

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  • Name Catherine Verch Tudor Ap Robert Of Berain 
    Born 1534  Berain, Llanefydd, Denbighshire, Wales Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Female 
    Died 27 Aug 1591 
    Buried 1 Sep 1591  Llanefydd, Wales Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Notes 
    • JOHN SALUSBURY, is now the head of the house. In 1542 he had been elected as the first Member to represent his native place in Parliament. He was also Chancellor and Chamberlain for the county of Denbigh. He was the first Sheriff for his county, having filled that office in the years; 1541 and 1542. In 1547, 1553 and again in 1554, he sat in Parliament. Sometimes he is spoken of as "Sir John Salusbury before the death ofhis father; and some critics have endeavoured to shew that there was a link wanting in the records ofhis family. The answer is that as Chancellor he is spoken of by the courtesy title of "Sir," but that in 1547 he was, upon trhe accession of Edward the 6th, created by royal mandate a Knight of the Carpet. This gentleman was a most active character. He interested himself in local and in public affairs, and was the happy sire of a large family of 7 sons and 2 daughters,by Jane Middleton of Chester, whom he had married.©We shall have occasion to refer at length to these children, and for the moment pass them all over except the eldest son, John, who pre-deceased the father. He had married CATHERINE TUDOR, daughter and heiress of Tudor ap Vychan of Berain. She was beautiful, rich, and of a royal race; the ward, companion, friend and relative of Queen Elizabeth;(d)a fitting match for the highest in the land. her history is a romance, and has ben dealt in by many a pen. To us she is known only as the mother of a daughter Elizabeth, who was married to Owen Brereton of Bersham, and of 2 sons, whose lives immediately follow.


      Born:1534
      Place of Birth: Berain
      Biography: Contributor William Williams writes about the woman who became known as the Mother of Wales...
      Catrin of Berain (1534-1591), the daughter of Tudor ap Robert Vychan and Jane Vielville, was a handsome, wealthy and intelligent woman who married four different powerful husbands during the 16th century. Variously named Katherine, Katheryn, Catherine and Catrin, and of the surname of Tewdr, Tudur or Tudor, Catrin Tudor was a descendant of an ancient Welsh patrician family. She was descended from Henry VII, the first ruler of the royal House of Tudor.

      Henry Tudor, Earl of Richmond fought against, and brought the defeat to Richard III that ended the Plantagenet succession near Market Bosworth in 1485. Henry VII subsequently built commercial and personal alliances through marriage to formalise and stabilise the Tudor dynasty. His daughter, Margaret was married in 1503 to James IV of Scotland and his other daughter Mary married Louis XII of France in 1514.

      Catrin Tudor nurtured her wealth and increased her influence in part through strategic marriages. She married four times: first to John Salusbury, aka Salisbury or Salisburie, then to Sir Richard Clough, and then to Morris Wynn of Gwydir. She wed her fourth husband, Edward Thelwall of Plas-y-ward in 1583. Her union with each of her husbands built up her estate and added to her substantial holdings and power.

      John Salusbury of Lleweni, the eldest son of the Chancellor and Sheriff from Denbigh, was Catrin's first husband.

      Sir Richard Clough, Knight of the Holy Sepulchre became her second husband in 1567.

      His 'Bach y Graig House' was the first brick house to be built in Wales that same year. Richard made a pilgrimage to the Holy Land on crusade, and returned to Great Britain where he accumulated a considerable fortune and was knighted for his endeavours. Before he died in 1570, he initiated the London Stock Exchange and he worked as a commercial and political agent in the Queen's interest.

      Her third husband, Morris Wynn of Gwydir was a Prince of Gwynedd, and a descendant of Rhodri Mawr. He was also descended from the Princes of Powys, the Earl of Salisbury and Llewelyn the Great.

      Edward Thelwell, descended from Teutons and Normans who were granted the country of Dyffryn Clwyd by King Edward I, became her fourth husband. These land grants included Ruthin Castle in Wales, which became the ancestral home of the Thelwells.

      All four of Catrin's husbands preceded her in death. The bards of Catrin's day spread tales of her exploits and they produced some tall tales. Catrin was said to have had seven husbands, or to have murdered her first three husbands, or to have killed one husband by pouring deadly molten lead into his ear. These sensational stories regarding her cunning and brutality remain unsubstantiated.

      As her six children had been borne by high profile husbands, and because she had around sixteen step children, about thirty-two grandchildren, and scores of descendants, Catrin has often been labeled "Mam Cymru" which translates into "Mother of Wales". Coincidentally, the Isle of Anglesey is known as "Mon Mam Cymru" or "Mona Mother of Wales" which was able to supply the entire population of Wales with vegetables, grains, herbs and fruit in ancient times.

      Catrin of Berain died on 27 August 1591 and was buried at Llanefydd on 1 September. Tudor rule ended in 1603 with the death of Elizabeth I and this event marked the begining of the Stuart dynasty.

      Her portrait

      Katherine Tudor of Berain (1534-1591) by Lucas de Heere
      Painted in 1568, when she was 34 years old.
    Person ID I14014  Lythgoe-Donaldson
    Last Modified 22 Jul 2007 

    Family John Salusbury,   b. Abt 1534, of Boras, Denbigh, Wales Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Children 
    +1. Elizabeth Salusbury,   b. Boras, Denbigh, Wales Find all individuals with events at this location
     2. Thomas Salusbury,   b. Abt 1565, Llyweni, Denbigh, Wales Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 21 Sep 1587  (Age ~ 22 years)
     3. John Salusbury, Sir,   b. 1561, Llyweni, Denbigh, Wales Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 1613  (Age 52 years)
    Family ID F6640  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBorn - 1534 - Berain, Llanefydd, Denbighshire, Wales Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsBuried - 1 Sep 1591 - Llanefydd, Wales Link to Google Earth
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