Read through this factoid about Henry VII, the first Tudor king. Highlight in green all the major changes he introduced. As a group decide which was the most important change he brought to the country. Now draw a sketch of Henry in the centre of your sheet. Around the sketch itemise all the changes you’ve found and at the bottom write what you think was the biggest change. Your teacher will explain what to do next. Before Henry VII came to the throne in 1485, the most powerful families at England had been at war with each other for generations. There were two main families, representing the two rivals to the throne: the House of York and the House of Lancaster. Henry VII defeated Richard III, who was a member of the House of York, at the Battle of Bosworth in 1485, and declared himself king of England. Henry VII was from the House of Lancaster, so in an attempt to unite the two families he married Elizabeth of York, the daughter of a previous Yorkist king Edward VI. The House of Lancaster had a king and the House of York had a queen. Everyone was happy!
When Henry became king he made some important changes to the way the country was run to stop it falling into civil war again. He banned the barons from having their own private armies, that could have threatened the king’s. When Henry visited the Earl of Oxford, the baron had put on a special parade of his servants to welcome the king and had them all kitted out in a specially designed uniform. Henry interpreted this as an attempt to form a private army, and fined the Earl £10,000! Warfare was changing too. Castles were no longer an effective defence against attackers with the invention of gunpowder. So Henry made sure his army and his castles had the latest in military technology – powerful canons that could fire shot for hundreds of metres and destroy enemy castles. Henry also improved the state of the royal treasury. He sent commissioners all around the country forcing people to give the king loans. If they found a large mansion they would demand that the owner paid a large sum of money and if they found an old or small property they would still demand money, because they argued the owner’s were saving money and had cash to spare. Wars with France had always been very costly and expensive. Henry did a deal with the French king, that in return for not sending an army to France, the French would pay the English £150,000. To keep the Spanish quiet and avoid a war with them, Henry offered married his son, Arthur, to the Spanish king’s daughter, Catherine of Aragon. Henry was very good at publicising the new royal family. He had a special new symbol designed, the Tudor rose, showing the roses of York and Lancaster together. The image appeared everywhere, on clothing, buildings and on coins.
Possible problem words: treasury pope
Read through this factoid about Henry VIII, the second Tudor king. Highlight in green all the major changes he introduced. As a group decide which was the most important change he brought to the country. Now draw a sketch of Henry in the centre of your sheet. Around the sketch itemise all the changes you’ve found and at the bottom write what you think was the biggest change. Your teacher will explain what to do next.
Henry’s father Henry VII had been very successful in raising money for the royal treasury, but he hadn’t made himself very popular in the process. What Henry VIII did was to change people’s perception of the king, and see him as a popular and powerful leader of their country. When his brother Arthur died, Henry married his widow Catherine of Aragon. At first Henry and Catherine were a popular couple. When Henry went to France to visit King Francis in 1513, Catherine ran the country for Henry. Her army even managed to defeat the Scots, who had been a constant problem for English kings for hundreds of year. Catherine gave Henry VIII the dead Scottish king’s blood-stained coat as a homecoming present. Henry and Catherine were happily married for nearly 20 years, but by the end of that time she had failed to produce a male heir for him and relations between the two hit a crisis. Henry had fallen in love with a younger woman, Ann Boleyn, who was pregnant with what he thought might be the son he had always dreamed of. The problem was in Tudor times it was difficult to get a divorce and the pope would never allow it. Henry got round this problem by appointing himself head of the English church and marrying Anne. Sadly for Henry Anne gave birth to a daughter who would later become Elizabeth I. Many people in the country opposed what Henry had done. The monks were particularly hostile to the idea of someone who wasn’t a priest being head of the church, so Henry closed down all the monasteries in the country and sold off their wealth and property to raise yet more cash for the royal treasury. Monasteries had been around since St Augustine’s time at the end of the sixth century, and their sudden disappearance was a big loss to the people of England. Henry also made some changes to the way religion was practised in parish churches. In 1538, he ordered that the Bible was to be read in English and a copy of the English bible was to be placed ion every church. For the first time people could hear God’s word spoken in their own language.
Possible problem words: pope Catholic Protestant
Read through this factoid about Edward VI, the third Tudor king. Highlight in green all the major changes he introduced. As a group decide which was the most important change he brought to the country. Now draw a sketch of Edward in the centre of your sheet. Around the sketch itemise all the changes you’ve found and at the bottom write what you think was the biggest change. Your teacher will explain what to do next. Henry VIII, Edward’s father made some important changes to the religious life of England, for example he made himself Head of the Church of England instead of the pope. However, apart from the fact the Bible was now in English (not Latin) few people would have noticed many differences to the way religion was practised. People still thought of themselves as Catholics – a traditional form of Christianity. Edward and his advisers wanted to change all this. They had heard about a modern form of Christianity spreading across Europe led by people like the German monk Martin Luther. They protested against the wealth and power of the traditional Catholic Church and wanted a much simpler religion that ordinary people would feel more in tune with. They called themselves Protestants. Edward became a Protestant. To reflect the change in his religious beliefs, Edward ordered that churches across the country be changed. The old Latin services were changed to new simpler ones in English that everyone could understand. Expensive decorations in churches, like gold ornaments, statues of the virgin and paintings of saints were removed. Beautiful stained glass windows were smashed and replaced with clear glass. Walls were whitewashed so they were plain and simple. There were to be no distractions from the word of God in Edward’s Protestant churches.
Edward died tragically young, a slow a painful death. He died of tuberculosis which caused his hair and nails to drop off and his fingers and toes to drop away at the joints. He was just 15 and had no children, so his sister Mary inherited the throne.
Possible problem words: pope Catholic Protestant
Read through this factoid about Mary, the fourth Tudor monarch. Highlight in green all the major changes she introduced. As a group decide which was the most important change she brought to the country. Now draw a sketch of Mary in the centre of your sheet. Around the sketch itemise all the changes you’ve found and at the bottom write what you think was the biggest change. Your teacher will explain what to do next.
When Mary Tudor came to the throne she was unmarried and 37 years old. Many were delighted to have Mary as their queen at first, because her father Henry VIII and her brother Edward VI had introduced many changes to the Church. Henry had made the Tudors heads of the Church – a job that was previously reserved for the pope. Edward had destroyed all the beautiful ornaments and decorations in churches so they would be as simple as possible and people would concentrate on the word of God. People who supported these changes were known as Protestants, and those who wanted to worship in the traditional way were called Catholics. Mary was a Catholic. As soon as she became Queen she set about changing things back to the way they had been before. She pope became head of the Church in England again. Many decorations were restored to English churches, including paintings on walls, gold ornaments and stained-glass windows. Church services, which Protestants wanted to hold in English, were now conducted in Latin once again.
Mary is often nicknamed ‘Bloody Mary’. This is because she used torture and a brutal method of execution, burning at the stake, to deal with anyone who opposed the changes she introduced to the Church. In her reign she had over 300 people executed in this way! When she died of cancer in 1558, few mourned her passing. Church bells allegedly rang out in celebration across London!
Possible problem words: propaganda pope Catholic Protestant
Read through this factoid about Elizabeth, the fifth Tudor monarch. Highlight in green all the major changes she introduced. As a group decide which was the most important change she brought to the country. Now draw a sketch of Elizabeth in the centre of your sheet. Around the sketch itemise all the changes you’ve found and at the bottom write what you think was the biggest change. Your teacher will explain what to do next.
Elizabeth was the daughter of Anne Boleyn, Henry VIII’s second wife. She was exceedingly bright – she could speak 5 languages by the time she was 16 – and used her skills to make important decisions about how the country should be run. Like her grandfather Henry VII, she was very clever at using publicity or propaganda to let people know how beautiful and powerful she was. Hundreds of portraits were painted of her in her most beautiful clothes and these were sent around the country to let people know what she looked like – remember there were no TVs or newspapers at this time! Under her sister Mary, Britain’s reputation as a powerful nation had suffered terribly. She had married the Spanish king Philip, who many suspected of stealing English taxes and taking them back to Spain. She had lost important battles abroad, and the last bit of land that England possessed on the continent went when the French took back Calais. Elizabeth changed all that, and defeated the might of Spain when they tried to invade England in 1588, during an event known as the Spanish Armada.
For many years Parliament had been becoming stronger and more assertive, but Elizabeth, because she was so clever wasn’t going to take any nonsense from them. She reasserted the power of the monarch over parliament once again, by refusing to agree to many of their laws. For example, Parliament tried to stop people playing games on a Sunday, but Elizabeth thought people deserved a day of relaxation, and so refused to approve the new law.
Under her brother and sister, the Church had seen many changes. First her brother who was a Protestant, had wanted to destroy all the beautiful decorations in the churches and whitewash the building and then her sister Mary, who was a Catholic, and supported the traditional church, had changed things back to the way they had been. The country was split between those who supported the simpler Protestant religion and those who supported the more elaborate and traditional Catholic one. Elizabeth was a Protestant herself, but she realised that she couldn’t keep changing things backwards and forwards in the English church all the time. She very cleverly struck a middle path between the two religions. She allowed some decorations and ceremonies in churches, but not too many. She made herself the head of the church, not the pope (which pleased the Protestants) but called herself ‘supreme governor’ (which pleased the Catholics). She appointed a moderate archbishop of Canterbury Matthew Parker who would please more people. All these changes were known as ‘The Elizabethan Church Settlement’ and they were very successful in keeping her kingdom happy and prosperous for many years.