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Anne Boleyn in the Tower. On the morning of the 19 th of May, Anne was taken to Tower Green where she was beheaded. Her remains were buried in an unmarked grave in the Chapel of St. Peter ad Vincula, the parish church of the Tower of London. Queen Anne before Decapitation - 16th century. Anne Boleyn. I am a university student doing a BA degree in Archaeology. I believe that intellectual engagement by advocates from both ends of the spectrum would serve to Read More.

The source of the rumor about the mole on her neck and extra finger was Nicholas Sander, a guy who'd never seen Anne in person, and also said she had a third breast and wore a dress with a motif of tongues with nails through them to her coronation. None of it was true. Also the titles of Ormonde and Wiltshire came to the family once the king was dating Anne; they didn't really get anything when he was with her sister.

This article was too general and should have provided more about how Anne influenced the change that would become the Church of England. You have facts that are not proven such as the extra finger and there is only one known image of Anne on a coin. Thank you for pointing out that she wasn't exceptionally beautiful. Most people believe she must have been beautiful to capture the heart of the king. I love reading about the Queens of England. Very annoying being so careless with facts!

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I know it makes for a better story but it's not supported by facts! Ancient Origins has been quoted by:. By bringing together top experts and authors, this archaeology website explores lost civilizations, examines sacred writings, tours ancient places, investigates ancient discoveries and questions mysterious happenings.

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Skip to main content. When Was Anne Boleyn Born? References englishhistory. Login or Register in order to comment. Melissa wrote on 27 January, - Permalink. Lisa May Davidson wrote on 24 January, - Permalink. Related Articles on Ancient-Origins. The White Tower, most commonly known as the Tower of London, is situated on the north bank of the river Thames in central London and is one of the oldest, long-standing edifices in England.

It is Heartless propaganda made people believe that Anne Boleyn was a witch - a woman who manipulated the king and put spells on him to reach her goals. She was obviously a very intelligent woman, but her Top New Stories. This is due to archaeologists uncovering years of artifacts at the Into the Drink! Anahita and Ishtar: Connections to the Planet Venus. Anahita was a goddess associated with water, fertility, wisdom, warfare, and eventually the planet Venus. During the Achaemenid dynasty in Persia, she became incorporated into the Zoroastrian Upon Henry's death, he was succeeded by his son Edward VI.

Since Edward was then only nine years old, he could not rule directly. Instead, Henry's will designated 16 executors to serve on a council of regency until Edward reached the age of If Mary's issue failed, the crown was to go to Elizabeth, Henry's daughter by Anne Boleyn, and her heirs.

Finally, if Elizabeth's line became extinct, the crown was to be inherited by the descendants of Henry VIII's deceased younger sister, Mary, the Greys. Henry cultivated the image of a Renaissance man , and his court was a centre of scholarly and artistic innovation and glamorous excess, epitomised by the Field of the Cloth of Gold. He scouted the country for choirboys, taking some directly from Wolsey's choir, and introduced Renaissance music into court. Henry himself kept a considerable collection of instruments; he was skilled on the lute , could play the organ, and was a talented player of the virginals.

He is often reputed to have written " Greensleeves " but probably did not. He was an avid gambler and dice player, and excelled at sports, especially jousting, hunting, and real tennis.


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He was known for his strong defence of conventional Christian piety. Henry was an intellectual. The first English king with a modern humanist education, he read and wrote English, French and Latin, and was thoroughly at home in his well-stocked library. He personally annotated many books and wrote and published one of his own. To promote the public support for the reformation of the church, Henry had numerous pamphlets and lectures prepared. For example, Richard Sampson's Oratio was an argument for absolute obedience to the monarchy and claimed that the English church had always been independent from Rome.

Henry VIII of England

A large well-built athlete over 6 feet [1. More than pastimes, they were political devices that served multiple goals, from enhancing his athletic royal image to impressing foreign emissaries and rulers, to conveying Henry's ability to suppress any rebellion. Thus he arranged a jousting tournament at Greenwich in , where he wore gilded armour, gilded horse trappings, and outfits of velvet, satin and cloth of gold dripping with pearls and jewels. It suitably impressed foreign ambassadors, one of whom wrote home that, "The wealth and civilisation of the world are here, and those who call the English barbarians appear to me to render themselves such".

He then started adding weight and lost the trim, athletic figure that had made him so handsome; Henry's courtiers began dressing in heavily padded clothes to emulate — and flatter — their increasingly stout monarch. Towards the end of his reign his health rapidly declined. The power of Tudor monarchs, including Henry, was 'whole' and 'entire', ruling, as they claimed, by the grace of God alone.

These included acts of diplomacy including royal marriages , declarations of war, management of the coinage, the issue of royal pardons and the power to summon and dissolve parliament as and when required. In practice, Tudor monarchs used patronage to maintain a royal court that included formal institutions such as the Privy Council as well as more informal advisers and confidants. Elton has argued that one such minister, Thomas Cromwell, led a "Tudor revolution in government" quite independent of the king, whom Elton presented as an opportunistic, essentially lazy participant in the nitty-gritty of politics.

Where Henry did intervene personally in the running of the country, Elton argued, he mostly did so to its detriment. From to , Thomas Wolsey — , a cardinal of the established Church, oversaw domestic and foreign policy for the young king from his position as Lord Chancellor. The Star Chamber's overall structure remained unchanged, but Wolsey used it to provide for much-needed reform of the criminal law. The power of the court itself did not outlive Wolsey, however, since no serious administrative reform was undertaken and its role was eventually devolved to the localities.

Thomas Cromwell c. Returning to England from the continent in or , Cromwell soon entered Wolsey's service. He turned to law, also picking up a good knowledge of the Bible, and was admitted to Gray's Inn in He became Wolsey's "man of all work". By , Cromwell and those associated with him were already responsible for the drafting of much legislation.

Cromwell did much work through his many offices to remove the tasks of government from the Royal Household and ideologically from the personal body of the King and into a public state. Henry inherited a vast fortune and a prosperous economy from his father Henry VII, who had been frugal and careful with money. Although he further augmented his royal treasury through the seizure of church lands, Henry's heavy spending and long periods of mismanagement damaged the economy.


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Much of this wealth was spent by Henry on maintaining his court and household, including many of the building works he undertook on royal palaces. Henry hung 2, tapestries in his palaces; by comparison, James V of Scotland hung just This income came from the Crown lands that Henry owned as well as from customs duties like tonnage and poundage , granted by parliament to the king for life. Indeed, war and Henry's dynastic ambitions in Europe exhausted the surplus he had inherited from his father by the mids.

Cromwell debased the currency more significantly, starting in Ireland in The English pound halved in value against the Flemish pound between and as a result. The nominal profit made was significant, helping to bring income and expenditure together, but it had a catastrophic effect on the overall economy of the country.

In part, it helped to bring about a period of very high inflation from onwards. Henry is generally credited with initiating the English Reformation — the process of transforming England from a Catholic country to a Protestant one — though his progress at the elite and mass levels is disputed, [] and the precise narrative not widely agreed.

Pollard has argued, even if Henry had not needed an annulment, Henry may have come to reject papal control over the governance of England purely for political reasons.


  1. The life and reign of King Henry VIII.
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  6. In any case, between and , Henry instituted a number of statutes that dealt with the relationship between king and pope and hence the structure of the nascent Church of England. The Ecclesiastical Appointments Act required the clergy to elect bishops nominated by the Sovereign. The Act of Supremacy in declared that the King was "the only Supreme Head on Earth of the Church of England" and the Treasons Act made it high treason, punishable by death, to refuse the Oath of Supremacy acknowledging the King as such. Similarly, following the passage of the Act of Succession , all adults in the Kingdom were required to acknowledge the Act's provisions declaring Henry's marriage to Anne legitimate and his marriage to Catherine illegitimate by oath; [] those who refused were subject to imprisonment for life, and any publisher or printer of any literature alleging that the marriage to Anne was invalid subject to the death penalty.

    Henry, to Thomas Cromwell's annoyance, insisted on parliamentary time to discuss questions of faith, which he achieved through the Duke of Norfolk. This led to the passing of the Act of Six Articles , whereby six major questions were all answered by asserting the religious orthodoxy, thus restraining the reform movement in England. Henry established a new political theology of obedience to the crown that was continued for the next decade.

    It reflected Martin Luther 's new interpretation of the fourth commandment "Honour thy father and mother" , brought to England by William Tyndale. The founding of royal authority on the Ten Commandments was another important shift: reformers within the Church used the Commandments' emphasis on faith and the word of God, while conservatives emphasised the need for dedication to God and doing good.

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    The reformers' efforts lay behind the publication of the Great Bible in in English. Many fled abroad, including the influential Tyndale, [] who was eventually executed and his body burned at Henry's behest. When taxes once payable to Rome were transferred to the Crown, Cromwell saw the need to assess the taxable value of the Church's extensive holdings as they stood in The result was an extensive compendium, the Valor Ecclesiasticus.

    The visitation focussed almost exclusively on the country's religious houses, with largely negative conclusions. The result was to encourage self-dissolution.

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    By January no such houses remained: some had been dissolved. The programme was designed primarily to create a landed gentry beholden to the crown, which would use the lands much more efficiently. Response to the reforms was mixed. The religious houses had been the only support of the impoverished, [] and the reforms alienated much of the population outside London, helping to provoke the great northern rising of —, known as the Pilgrimage of Grace.

    They would re-emerge during the reign of Henry's daughter Mary — Apart from permanent garrisons at Berwick , Calais, and Carlisle , England's standing army numbered only a few hundred men. This was increased only slightly by Henry. The difference in capability was at this stage not significant, however, and Henry's forces had new armour and weaponry.

    They were also supported by battlefield artillery and the war wagon , [] relatively new innovations, and several large and expensive siege guns. Henry's break with Rome incurred the threat of a large-scale French or Spanish invasion. He also strengthened existing coastal defence fortresses such as Dover Castle and, at Dover, Moat Bulwark and Archcliffe Fort, which he personally visited for a few months to supervise.

    Henry is traditionally cited as one of the founders of the Royal Navy. At the beginning of Henry's reign, Ireland was effectively divided into three zones: the Pale , where English rule was unchallenged; Leinster and Munster , the so-called "obedient land" of Anglo-Irish peers; and the Gaelic Connaught and Ulster , with merely nominal English rule. Butler proved unable to control opposition, including that of Kildare. Kildare was appointed chief governor in , resuming his dispute with Butler, which had before been in a lull.

    Meanwhile, the Earl of Desmond , an Anglo-Irish peer, had turned his support to Richard de la Pole as pretender to the English throne; when in Kildare failed to take suitable actions against him, Kildare was once again removed from his post. The Desmond situation was resolved on his death in , which was followed by a period of uncertainty. This was effectively ended with the appointment of Henry FitzRoy, Duke of Richmond and the king's son, as lord lieutenant. Richmond had never before visited Ireland, his appointment a break with past policy.

    Kildare, on the other hand, was summoned to London; after some hesitation, he departed for London in , where he would face charges of treason. Offaly had the Archbishop of Dublin murdered, and besieged Dublin. Offaly led a mixture of Pale gentry and Irish tribes, although he failed to secure the support of Lord Darcy , a sympathiser, or Charles V. What was effectively a civil war was ended with the intervention of 2, English troops — a large army by Irish standards — and the execution of Offaly his father was already dead and his uncles. Although the Offaly revolt was followed by a determination to rule Ireland more closely, Henry was wary of drawn-out conflict with the tribes, and a royal commission recommended that the only relationship with the tribes was to be promises of peace, their land protected from English expansion.

    This change did, however, also allow a policy of peaceful reconciliation and expansion: the Lords of Ireland would grant their lands to the King, before being returned as fiefdoms. The incentive to comply with Henry's request was an accompanying barony, and thus a right to sit in the Irish House of Lords, which was to run in parallel with England's. The complexities and sheer scale of Henry's legacy ensured that, in the words of Betteridge and Freeman, "throughout the centuries, Henry has been praised and reviled, but he has never been ignored". Mackie sums up Henry's personality and its impact on his achievements and popularity:.

    The respect, nay even the popularity, which he had from his people was not unmerited He kept the development of England in line with some of the most vigorous, though not the noblest forces of the day. His high courage — highest when things went ill — his commanding intellect, his appreciation of fact, and his instinct for rule carried his country through a perilous time of change, and his very arrogance saved his people from the wars which afflicted other lands. Dimly remembering the wars of the Roses, vaguely informed as to the slaughters and sufferings in Europe, the people of England knew that in Henry they had a great king.

    A particular focus of modern historiography has been the extent to which the events of Henry's life including his marriages, foreign policy and religious changes were the result of his own initiative and, if they were, whether they were the result of opportunism or of a principled undertaking by Henry. Pollard , who in presented his own, largely positive, view of the king, lauding him, "as the king and statesman who, whatever his personal failings, led England down the road to parliamentary democracy and empire". Elton in Elton's book on The Tudor Revolution in Government , maintained Pollard's positive interpretation of the Henrician period as a whole, but reinterpreted Henry himself as a follower rather than a leader.

    For Elton, it was Cromwell and not Henry who undertook the changes in government — Henry was shrewd, but lacked the vision to follow a complex plan through. Although the central tenets of Elton's thesis have since been questioned, it has consistently provided the starting point for much later work, including that of J. Scarisbrick , his student. Scarisbrick largely kept Elton's regard for Cromwell's abilities, but returned agency to Henry, who Scarisbrick considered to have ultimately directed and shaped policy.

    This lack of clarity about Henry's control over events has contributed to the variation in the qualities ascribed to him: religious conservative or dangerous radical; lover of beauty or brutal destroyer of priceless artefacts; friend and patron or betrayer of those around him; chivalry incarnate or ruthless chauvinist. Many changes were made to the royal style during his reign. Following Henry's excommunication, Pope Paul III rescinded the grant of the title "Defender of the Faith", but an Act of Parliament 35 Hen 8 c 3 declared that it remained valid; and it continues in royal usage to the present day.

    Henry's motto was "Coeur Loyal" "true heart" , and he had this embroidered on his clothes in the form of a heart symbol and with the word "loyal". His emblem was the Tudor rose and the Beaufort portcullis. In , the phrase "of the Church of England" changed to "of the Church of England and also of Ireland ". In , Henry had the Irish Parliament change the title "Lord of Ireland" to "King of Ireland" with the Crown of Ireland Act , after being advised that many Irish people regarded the Pope as the true head of their country, with the Lord acting as a mere representative.

    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Catherine of Aragon m. Anne Boleyn m.

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    Jane Seymour m. Anne of Cleves m. Catherine Howard m. Catherine Parr m. Jane Seymour left became Henry's third wife, pictured at right with Henry and the young Prince Edward , c. At the time that this was painted, Henry was married to his sixth wife, Catherine Parr. Main article: Dissolution of the Monasteries. Main article: Rough Wooing. See also: Third Succession Act. Main article: English Reformation. Henry's armorial during his early reign left and later reign right.

    Owen Tudor 4. Edmund Tudor, 1st Earl of Richmond 9. Catherine of Valois 2. Henry VII of England John Beaufort, 1st Duke of Somerset 5. Margaret Beaufort Margaret Beauchamp 1. Richard of York, 3rd Duke of York 6. Edward IV of England Cecily Neville 3. Elizabeth of York Richard Woodville, 1st Earl Rivers 7. Elizabeth Woodville Jacquetta of Luxembourg. Biography portal Monarchy portal England portal Anglicanism portal. Grene growith the holy Anne Boleyn: Fatal Attractions. Elton puts the date the bull was made official as November St Catherine's Press. Under Duke of Cornwall, which was his title when he succeeded his brother as Prince of Wales.

    Reviews in History. Retrieved 5 April Tudor and Stuart Britain: — Retrieved 13 July The King had no further use for Wolsey, who had failed to procure the annulment of his marriage, and he summoned Parliament in order that an act of attainder should be passed against the cardinal. The act was not needed, however, for Wolsey had also been commanded to appear before the common-law judges and answer the charge that by publishing his bulls of appointment as papal legate he had infringed the Statute of Praemunire.

    Eerdmans Publishing. Henry decided to turn to the archbishop of Canterbury for the annulment, but Wolsey, recognizing that it was too late, opposed this move. Henry discharged him and appointed his friend Sir Thomas More as chancellor, confident that More would support him. More refused to make any statement for or against the annulment. When pressed to do so he resigned as the chancellor and retired to private life.

    He had such a reputation for integrity that his endorsement would have engendered huge support for the annulment among Parliament and the people, who loved Catherine. More's silence so angered Henry that he tried to force his hand by having him imprisoned and tried. The perfidy of the king's secretary, Thomas Cromwell, however, and the perjury of a petty bureaucrat, Richard Rich, brought about More's conviction and execution for treason in Meanwhile, a respected Cambridge scholar priest, Tomas Cranmer, supported Henry and sought support for him from the European universities.

    Institute of Historical Research. Retrieved 9 November A Brief History of the English Reformation. Cromwell, with his usual single-minded and ruthless efficiency, organised the interrogation of the accused, their trials and their executions. Cranmer was absolutely shattered by the 'revelation' of the queen's misdeeds. He wrote to the king expressing his difficulty in believing her guilt. But he fell into line and pronounced the annulment of Henry's second marriage on the grounds of Anne's pre-contract to another.

    The Independent. Retrieved 25 August Retrieved 25 March Young and Damned and Fair. Los Angeles Times. Windsor Castle: College of St George. Archived from the original PDF on 2 May Retrieved 12 March Archived from the original on 15 June Retrieved 14 April Mackie The Earlier Tudors, — London: Vintage Books. Arnold, Thomas The Renaissance at War. Ashley, Mike Running Press. Ashrafian, Hutan Archived from the original on 2 January Bernard, G.

    Betteridge, Thomas Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies. Betteridge, Thomas; Freeman, Thomas S. Ashgate Publishing, Ltd. Brigden, Susan New Worlds, Lost Worlds. Chibi, Andrew A. Journal of Church and State. Churchill, Winston The New World. History of the English Speaking Peoples. Cassell and Company. Crofton, Ian The Kings and Queens of England. Quercus Books. Cruz, Anne J. University of Illinois Press. Davies, Jonathan Journal of the Society for Army Historical Research. Elton, G. Cambridge University Press. Reform and Reformation: England, — Edward Arnold. Farquhar, Michael A Treasure of Royal Scandals.

    Penguin Books. Fraser, Antonia Vintage Books. Guicciardini, Francesco Alexander, Sidney ed. The History of Italy. Princeton University Press. Gunn, Steven History Today. Guy, John The Tudor monarchy. Arnold Publishers. Guy, John A. The Tudors: a Very Short Introduction. Harrison, William; Edelen, Georges []. Dover Publications Inc. Hays, J. Rutgers University Press. Hart, Kelly The History Press. Hall, Edward Haigh, Christopher Clarendon Press.

    The London Encyclopaedia 3 ed. Hutchinson, Robert Ives, Eric Oxford: Blackwell Publishing. Lehmberg, Stanford E. The Reformation Parliament, — Lipscomb, Suzannah Who was Henry? Loades, David The National Archives. Meyer, G. Presidio Press. Morris, T. Tudor Government. Retrieved 20 March Pollard, A. Henry VIII. Rex, Richard The Historical Journal. Scarisbrick, J. University of California Press.

    Henry VIII 2 ed. Yale University Press.