Family tree for King Edward VI showing:
King Edward VI was born on 12th October 1537 the only child of King Henry VIII and his third wife, Jane Seymour. Edward’s mother died from puerperal fever 12 days after Edward’s birth on 24th October 1537.
In 1543 he was betrothed to his second cousin, Mary Queen of Scots but the Scots broke the agreement after a few months and allied themselves with France instead of England.
Henry VIII was ever fearful that Edward would succumb to an illness and so the young prince was brought up in his own household and had little contact with his half-siblings, Mary and Elizabeth. When Henry VIII married his sixth wife, Katherine Parr, she took control of Edward’s education and saw that he spent more time with his family.
King of England
King Henry VIII died on 28th January 1547. Edward succeeded to the throne as King Edward VI aged 9 years. Because he was a child, his uncle, Edward Seymour acted as regent and took the title Lord Protector. Seymour also gained the title Duke of Somerset.
King Edward VI was a committed Protestant and introduced a new Book of Common Prayer in 1549. His uncle, Edward Seymour, was overthrown by John Dudley in 1550. Dudley took control of the young king and gave himself the title Duke of Northumberland.
Dudley was keen to advance his family through Edward and when Edward’s health began to fail in 1553, Dudley married his son, Guildford, to Lady Jane Grey, Edward’s second cousin.
Death and Succession
In 1544, King Henry VIII had drawn up a new Act of Succession which stipulated that Edward should succeed to the throne and if he died without issue Mary then Elizabeth would follow. However, neither Edward nor Dudley wanted Edward’s Catholic half-sister, Mary, to succeed.
To get round the proscribed succession, they drew up a document known as the Devise for Succession which named Jane Grey, Protestant granddaughter of Henry VIII’s younger sister Mary, as Edward successor.
King Edward VI died on 6th July 1553. He was succeeded by Jane Grey but after just 9 days as Queen she was overthrown by Mary who took the throne as Queen Mary I.
Published Jun 18, 2020 @ 5:50 pm – Updated –
Harvard Reference for this page:
Heather Y Wheeler. (2020 – 2022). King Edward VI Family Tree 1537-1553 Family Tree. Available: https://www.treesofblue.com/king-edward-vi-1537-1553. Last accessed June 27th, 2022