12 Comments

  1. Janice P Robinson

    You are wrong on all counts.

    If Henry VIII had had at least one legitimate son by Catherine of Aragon, no matter how much he had loved Anne Boleyn, he would not have wanted an annulment. She either would have had to become his mistress, which she well may have done if it hadn’t been that he wanted an annulment, or he would have had to forget about her. And if had never met Anne Boleyn, but still had no legitimate son by Catherine of Aragon, he would still have wanted an annulment to get a legitimate son. He would have instead sought the hand of a foreign princess.

    Henry knew that even if he legitimized or attempted to legitimize Henry Fitzroy and then made him his heir, there would always have been a taint on him and that would have weakened his hold on the throne.

    There was no precedent for leaving the throne to a son born illegitimate and then legitimized. In the fourteenth century, John of Gaunt’s illegitimate children by his mistress Katherine Swynford, the Beauforts, were legitimized, but there were crucial differences. None of John of Gaunt’s children were born to inherit the throne. His legitimate son by his first marriage overthrew the existing monarch to become Henry IV. Also, Gaunt’s children by Katherine Swynford were legitimized only on the condition that he marry her, which he did. And even then, their half-brother Henry IV declared that neither they nor their descendants could inherit the throne.

    Although Henry VII’s sole descent from Edward III *was* through the Beauforts, nobody could have foreseen the Wars of the Roses and the day that Henry Tudor would be the only male Lancastrian left. And even then, Henry VII’s hold was shaky at first—he had to defeat several rebellions. And one thing that helped him enormously was marrying Elizabeth of York, who was descended from Edward III with no illegitimately born ancestors.

    Henry VIII knew from The Wars of the Roses what can happen when kings inherit shaky thrones, and he was determined that nobody would be able to question his son’s right to inherit. He never would have left his throne to a son that was born illegitimate.

    The quest for a legitimate son was the driving force behind his break with The Catholic Church, and his love for Anne Boleyn just happened to coincide with that. It’s romantic to think “He did it for her”, and that erroneous information is often stated as fact. but the fact actually is that he didn’t.

    Also, if Anne Boleyn had produced a son, Henry never ever would have killed her. Never. True, he made Elizabeth his heir when he thought that it was likely that he and Anne would still have a son, because to fail to do that at the time would cast doubt on any son they might have in the future. And true, after it became obvious that he was not going to have more than one legitimate son, he reinstated both Mary and Elizabeth in the line of succession, after Edward. I mean, why not at that point? That does not mean that Anne’s failure to produce a son was not the reason she met her demise. It was.

  2. france

    Totally infatuated for over 8 years before things turned really nasty between them and NO HE DID NOT DIVORCE FOR A SON BUT FOR HER , he could legitimied his bastard son Henry Fitzroy with the pope blessing and Anne was 32 when she finally married him !!! He could have got any 14 year old for sons. This false rumour and defamation towards Henry VIII continues to be popular.
    Let it be clear.
    Although Henry VIII craved for a male heir as the whole kingdom did ( few believed a female could rule, they remembered Mathilda ) and Anne Boleyn had promised him one, Henry DID NOT get rid of Anne for failing to produce a male heir .
    In Truth, once Anne Boleyn had given birth to Princess Elisabeth, Henry made the princess his legitimate heir to the throne and validated his marriage to Anne calling her his beloved queen and the union as perfect and valid for ever !
    On 23 March, 1534, Parliament passed the Act of Succession, vesting the succession of the English Crown in the children of King Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn. This act, effectively, set Princess Elizabeth first in line for the throne,
    This is the act of parliament ‘
    “that the lawful matrimony had and solemnized between your highness and your most dear and entirely beloved wife Queen Anne, shall be established, and taken for undoubtful, true, sincere, and perfect ever hereafter, according to the just judgment of the 1534.” To not forget that he will later on reinstate Mary to the succession after she will have signed the agreement to the illegitimacy of the marriage between her mother Catherine of Aragon and Henry and he will reinstate Elisabeth too to the succession after coming to terms with the fact that she was his child and her accepting his marriage to her mother Anne Boleyn void on the grounds of her affinity with Mary Boleyn, her sister, also known carnally by the king. All in all, Henry would have much preferred male heirs but it was not his reason to kill or even leave Anne nor did he refuse to have female heirs, he placed both Mary and Elisabeth as heirs.

  3. Peg

    He wanted his way with everything. She thrilled him for a while but was ready to move on when desire for a son was not met. Not love, just a thrill.

  4. Lori Jones

    I think he enjoyed the thrill of the chase. Henry was a hunter, she presented a challenge. He obtained her(Annr Bolyn), she couldn’t produce a.male child, to be King. Off with her head, on to the next hunt and capture.

  5. Cate

    The letters start out more in the chase of her the pursuit of getting a woman who is reluctant to be with him. She was a challenge. The first 9 letters are more about Henry’s wants and desires.

    Once Anne became ill with the sweating sickness there is a change in the tone of the letters. Letters 13, 14 and 15 is where he calls her by sweet names it becomes more about the two of them.

    As we ultimately see once a woman, his woman, did not produce a male heir she was cast aside or in Anne’s case beheaded.

    He would stop at nothing to see if he could have a son. He divorced Kathryn of Aragon, broke with the Catholic church and killed his closest friends who did not see Anne as queen. Nor he as the head of the Church of England.

    Did Henry love her deeply spiritually? In my opinion no.

    Overall the pursuit, the illicit courtship ending with marriage, breaking with the church, divorcing Kathryn, it is still about one thing. A male heir and a fertile woman who could produce a son.

  6. Kelly

    If you are truly in love, you don’t have someone beheaded even if you think they cheated on you with your brother…..

    • france

      he was no more in love when he did that , he hated her then….. Reminder that he courted her 7 years before she became queen.

    • france

      9 years since he pursued her for 7 years before she became queen, I don t know anyone who has been infatuated that long …………………

  7. Annette G

    How wonderful and truly special to be able to share his feelings for Ann Boleyn.
    He truly was in love and spent what seemed to be a very long time apart before they were in each others company.

    Thank you for sharing these miraculous letters between the King and his love Ann Boleyn.

    Annette G
    Canada.

  8. Marcia

    I think Henry was in love with being in love. The person on the other end did not really matter. Kind of creepy that he associates the exhilaration of hunting and killing animals with thoughts of his mistress of the day. He was just an adrenaline junkie from the sound of it.

    • Kimberly Riley

      I agree with you and Anne was a very clever woman! She knew if she kept him at arms length it would be better for her. He was in love with love and remembering this was the 16th century, men were most virile hunting and fighting. So it goes hand in hand with him wanting her. Another conquest.

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