Sunday, March 22, 2009
Question from Elizabeth M - Inheritability of Rh negative factor
Alison Weir mentions a theory in her book THE SIX WIVES OF HENRY VIII, that one of the reasons Anne Boleyn had miscarriages after the healthy birth of Elizabeth might have been because Anne suffered a blood condition that made her Rhesus negative. A woman would have a healthy first child, but then not be able to have healthy births afterwards. My question is, would a Rhesus negative condition be an inherited ailment? Looking at the childbearing records of Anne's close female relatives, I wonder. Her mother, Elizabeth Howard Boleyn, gave birth to at least five children; her grandmother, Elizabeth Tilney Howard, gave birth to twelve by her two husbands. Her paternal grandmother, Margaret Butler Boleyn, had ten children. Her sister Mary Boleyn had two healthy children, and Mary Boleyn's daughter, Catherine Carey Knollys, had no less than fifteen children. And Margaret Wentworth Seymour, the first cousin of Elizabeth Howard Boleyn, gave birth to ten children, including Jane Seymour.