Henry VIII of England

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Henry VIII of England
Henry VIII was the King of England. He was born in Greenwich Palace in June 1491 and was the second son of Henry VII of England and Elizabeth of York. He had one brother, who was called Arthur, and two sisters, who were called Margaret and Mary. Arthur should have been the king instead of Henry, but Arthur died before this could happen. Henry ended up marrying Arthur's widow.

Henry is most famous because he had six wives:

  • Catherine of Aragon (mother of Mary)

  • Anne Boleyn (mother of Elizabeth, Henry execute her)

  • Jane Seymour (mother of prince Edward, she dies from an infection during childbirth)

  • Anne of Cleves

  • Catherine Howard

  • Catherine Parr

His wives had a lot of miscarriages. He wanted to have son, that’s why he married so many times.

Another important event that happened in England when Henry was the king was the country's change in religion from Roman Catholic to Protestant. Because Catherine of Aragon didn't give him sons, Henry asked the Pope to give them a divorce. The Pope refused, because Catherine's nephew was Charles V, Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire. Also, Catherine's family ruled Spain, and Spain was the largest Catholic country. So Henry asked the Thomas Cranmer of Canterbury to give him a divorce. The Pope was so angry that he excommunicated Henry, meaning Henry was thrown out of the church. Henry fought back. In 1534, he passed the Act of Supremacy, which meant the king, not the pope, was the head of the church. He then forced all priests and bishops to accept him as the new leader. Anyone who refused was executed.

Protestants thought that monasteries, in which Roman Catholic monks and nuns lived, had more money and land than the monks and nuns needed. Henry forced the monks and nuns to move out of the monasteries. Then Henry gave the money and land of the monasteries to men who supported him. Most of the men who received money and land from the closed monasteries were Protestants.

Henry died in January 1547. He was buried in Windsor Castle next to his third wife Jane Seymour. Henry was the father of two queens and one king. They were Mary I of England, Elizabeth I of England and Edward VI of England. None of them had any children.

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