Emreis VI (b. 1633 d. 1702) is one of the most controversial (or at least notorious) of Kemr's monarchs. As a young man he was a political radical, even questioning the rationality of having Kings and Queens at all. Yet by the time he assumed the throne at age 35 he was very much a political conservative. At least in so much as he cared about politics anymore. By and large, he allowed his ministers to run the country, while he focussed what was really important to him--women.
He had no less than five Queens. He survived all but one:
- Lady Elizabeth Anderville, who died in childbirth in 1663. They had wed in 1659 upon the insistance of the aging King. She was of no great family in terms of wealth or power (her father was a Viscount) but all agreed she was one of the most beautiful women of the age.
- Josette D'Arveau, niece of a French Marquis. Married to Emreis in 1664 in a ceremony of great pomp and circumstance. She died mysteriously (very likely of cancer in most reputable historians' opinions) in 1670.
- Antoinette D'Arveau, a distant cousin of Josette's with whom it was widely assumed (probably with good reason) Emreis was having an affair. She died in 1671 after a fall from a horse.
- Lady Margaret Howard, daughter of the Duke of Norfolk. Even more than most royal marriages, this one was arranged. It was widely believed by now there was something unlucky about King Emreis' bed. Yet he was a King, and he found this 17-year-old girl quite enticing. Their wedding was in 1680. By all accounts, she enjoyed being Queen and either did not realize or did not mind her royal husband's numerous mistresses. Whether her death was accident, suicide or murder remains unsolved. She certainly seems to have eaten something poisonous in winter of 1684 and died within a day. Losing a fourth Queen in a row made more than a few voices wag, and was the talk all over Europe. Yet nothing was ever proven, nor any formal accusations ever made.
- Caitlyn Armaugh was a handsome, middle-aged woman whose family had become quite wealthy in the past three or four generations. Her brother had even been knighted. It was at the ceremony she likely first laid eyes on Emreis VI and vice versa. That was in 1700. By year's end, she was his wife and Queen. Nine months later, she was a royal widow. Gossip and rumors abounded of course, many believing she had done onto Him before he do onto Her but again no charges were ever laid out in court. The official verdict of "Death by natural causes" went unchallenged.
So was the dashing Emreis a man unlucky in love? Or a murderer? Or both? No one can say for certain, but the question has spawned a mini-industry of Emrein Societies as well as dozens of novels and plays (including one musical), along with five motion pictures to date.
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ill Terruin of Kemr
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