Mary Tudor and Charles Brandon were officially married on 13th May 1515 after Mary was widowed following her marriage to King Louis XII of France.
It is believed that Mary and Charles were already in love when her marriage to the King of France was arranged by her brother Henry VIII. Mary was originally betrothed to the future Holy Roman Emperor, Charles in 1507 but following a change in allegiance Henry broke off the arrangement and began negotiating with France with the aid of Cardinal Wolsey. At the age of 18 Mary was sent to France to marry the 52 year old King, with a deal in place that Mary would do her duty by marrying Louis but when he dies Mary would be able to choose her next husband.
When the elderly King died in January 1515 negotiations began to bring Mary back to England. Henry had charged his closest friend with escorting his sister home under the promise that he would not propose to the Dowager Queen of France. One reason for this is that Henry was keen to see Mary return to England with the jewels and gold plate that the old King had promised his wife along with her substantial dowry.
Mary would confide her feelings in the new King of France, Francis I, about Brandon and he set about arranging the first meeting when Brandon landed on French soil. Francis saw that if Mary and Brandon married then Henry would not be able to use her as a political pawn by marrying her to the future Holy Roman Emperor, as she was originally suppose to.
On 5th March 1515 in a small chapel in Palais de Cluny, Mary Tudor and Charles Brandon married in secret, essentially Brandon had committed treason as they did not have the permission of the King to marry a Princess. The Privy Council called for Brandon to be imprisoned or even executed and it was only when Cardinal Wolsey intervened did Henry begin to calm down. Henry was close to both his sister and Brandon and so let the couple of with a heavy fine. The fine was £24,000, paid in yearly instalments of £1,000, along with Mary’s dowry from Louis of £200,000 and the gold plate and jewels that were given to her by her late husband.
The couple were officially married on 13th May 1515 at Greenwich Hall with Henry VIII and Katherine of Aragon in attendance, a feast and celebration followed but it was deemed a family affair. They would go on to have four children, two daughters and two sons.