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Henry VIII of England and Ireland, who reigned from 1509 until his death in 1547, was from the House of Tudor. He was the second son of Henry VII and Elizabeth of York. See below for more fascinating facts about Henry VIII and his reign or download the comprehensive worksheet pack which can be utilized within the classroom or home environment.
KEY FACTS & INFORMATION
EARLY AND PERSONAL LIFE
- Born on June 28, 1491, in Greenwich, Henry VIII was the second son of Henry VII and Elizabeth of York. In 1502, his elder brother Prince Arthur died, which officially made him the next heir to the throne.
- Young Henry was intelligent and could speak fluent French, Latin, and Spanish. He was also athletic and enjoyed hunting and tennis. He was fond of music, the arts, theology, and especially debate.
- In 1509, Henry VIII became the king after the death of his father.
- To ensure the alliance with Spain, the new king married his brother’s widow, Catherine of Aragon, with whom he had one surviving child, Mary. Mary I would later rule England and became known as Bloody Mary for her persecution of Protestants.
- As a result of early modern tradition, a female ruler was not accepted, which resulted in Henry’s radical actions to secure a male heir.
- While married to Catherine, Henry developed a fascination with Anne Boleyn, the sister of one of his mistresses at court. Henry requested Pope Clement VII grant him a divorce from Catherine arguing that marrying his brother’s widow, Catherine, was a crime in God’s eyes.
- The Pope refused to grant Henry’s request because it might offend the Holy Roman Emperor who was Catherine’s nephew.
- In January 1532, Henry VIII married Anne after he broke away from Rome and made himself the head of the new Church of England. In response, the Pope excommunicated Henry.
- Unable to produce a male heir with Anne, only a daughter who would go on to be Queen Elizabeth I, Anne was falsely accused of incest, witchcraft, adultery, and conspiracy against the king, and executed.
- Henry then married Jane Seymour who successfully gave birth to a son, the future Edward VI. As Seymour died shortly after childbirth, Henry then married Anne of Cleves, who he also divorced.
- After a few years, he married Catherine Howard who, like Anne, he had executed of alleged adultery. At the time of Henry’s death, his sixth wife was Catherine Parr.
HENRY AS KING OF ENGLAND
- Upon ascending the throne, Henry VIII organized England’s military and international affairs, specifically its war against France.
- By 1515, Wolsey was Henry’s Archbishop, Cardinal, and Chief Minister, who was known as one of the most powerful ministers in English history.
- From 1524, Wolsey became unpopular as a result of the failing English-Netherlands cloth trade, opposition to special tax, and the inability to negotiate with the Pope.
- By 1532, Thomas Cromwell rose to power and took control of the royal council replacing Wolsey.
- With Cromwell’s maneuvering, England further broke from Rome and the English Reformation began. Ministers who opposed the introduction of Protestantism were executed, including Thomas More, Wolsey’s successor.
- As a result of the Reformation, monasteries were dissolved and all the monasteries’ wealth and land went to the crown.
- During his rule, King Henry VIII invested in the navy to increase England’s number of ships to protect the island nation.
- In 1534, the Act of Supremacy made Henry VIII the supreme head of the Church of England, also known as Anglicana Ecclesia.
LEGACY & DEATH
- On January 28, 1546, 55-year-old Henry VIII died in London and was succeeded by his only son, Edward. He suffered from health problems related to obesity and diabetes.
- Much of Henry VIII’s reign was characterized by intrigue around his six wives and how he executed and divorced them.
- He was also known for the establishment of the Church of England and improvement of the navy.
- His introduction of Protestantism created a rift between England and Catholic nations as well as between English Catholic nobility and Protestants.
- Moreover, many saw the king as a ruthless ruler, executing political opponents, for example, the execution of leaders associated with the Pilgrimage of Grace.
- Henry’s first Act of Succession in 1533 made Princess Elizabeth the rightful heir to the throne, declaring Mary illegitimate. However, this was followed by the Second and Third Acts of Succession, stripping Elizabeth and Mary of their legitimacy.
- Upon Henry VIII’s death, Edward VI took the throne but, as he was only nine years old, the country was ruled by a Council of Regency.
Henry VIII Worksheets
This bundle contains 11 ready-to-use worksheets on English monarch Henry VIII that are perfect for students who want to learn more about Henry VIII of England (1491-1547) who was the successor to the throne from the House of Tudor.
Download includes the following worksheets:
- Henry VIII Facts
- Rule of Intrigues
- The Controversial King
- King’s Heir
- Henry’s Six Wives
- The Tudor Dynasty
- Rome and England
- Henry’s Proclamations
- English Reformation
- English Naval Power
- Monarch or Monster?
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Link will appear as Henry VIII Facts & Worksheets: https://kidskonnect.com - KidsKonnect, April 9, 2017
Use With Any Curriculum
These worksheets have been specifically designed for use with any international curriculum. You can use these worksheets as-is, or edit them using Google Slides to make them more specific to your own student ability levels and curriculum standards.