Originally Posted by realitykeeper
That must have been quite a feat given that a monogamy was practically akin to celibacy for monarchs of that time.
James was unuusual in that he married "beneath him" (he married a commoner), and he married for love, against the opposition of his family (and also of hers). His marriage to Ann Hyde lasted 11 years, endin with her death from breast cancer. It produced 8 children, of whom only 2 survived to adulthood. By all accounts the marriage was a close one; the couple were affectionate, and were very good friends as well as being husband and wife, something not taken for granted at the time. Ann became a Catholic early on in their marriage, and it is generally taken to be her example and her influence which led James to convert some years later. James was fond of his children and his role as a father which, again, was not something to be taken for granted at that time, and in that class.
And yet James had a string of infatuations with other women, and a string of mistresses, and was a famous letch and ogler at court. He had at least 7 illegitimate children by two of his mistresses (although some of these were born after Ann's death). Ann was deeply hurt by all this, but James seems to have seen no contradiction in his commitment to his marriage and his dalliances elsewhere.