Anne Boleyn


Anne Boleyn
Anne Boleyn (1501 or 1507? ' May 19, 1536) was the second queen consort of Henry VIII of England and the mother of Elizabeth I of England. She was the daughter of Sir Thomas Boleyn and Lady Elizabeth Howard, daughter of the Duke of Norfolk.
Personality and appearance.
Anne was not considered very beautiful. The English idea of beauty was a large figure, blue eyes, and blonde hair. Anne had none of these features. She had dark eyes and black hair, and was very skinny. However, her eyes were considered "black and beautiful" and were very large.
In spite of not being beautiful, Anne was very popular with men. She also was a good dancer and enjoyed gambling. Yet she was also a devout Christian.
Childhood.
Anne was born in either Hever or Blickling in 1501 or 1507. In 1513, Anne was sent to Margaret of Austria's royal court. She stayed there until 1514. She was then sent to France, where she stayed until 1521.
Back to England.
Anne came to the English court in 1522 after she had spent some time in France. Anne fell in love with Sir Henry Percy, who was the eldest son of the Earl of Nothumberland and it is thought that they became engaged to be married to him. Cardinal Wolsey found out about the arrangement and ordered them to be separated. Anne was sent home to Hever and Sir Henry was forced to marry Lady Mary Talbot. Anne blamed Cardinal Wolsey for her lost love and was determined to have her revenge on him, because he had called her a "foolish girl".
Anne's return to court.
Anne returned to the royal court and King Henry soon fell in love with her. He wanted her to become his mistress, but at first she refused. In 1527, Henry decided to divorce his wife, Catherine of Aragon, so that he could marry Anne instead. He said that the marriage was invalid because Catherine had been married to his older brother Arthur before she had married Henry. (Arthur had died at the age of fifteen, when he and Catherine had been married for only a few months, so her marriage to Henry had been allowed by the Pope.) Henry now thought that their marriage should not have been allowed in the first place. He said he was doing what he thought was right, even though he claimed he still loved Catherine. He quoted a verse from the Book of Leviticus in the Bible. This verse says that "a man may not marry his brother's wife". The Bible goes on to say that if a man marries his brother's wife, they will not have any children. Henry and Catherine did have one child, but she was a girl and was therefore not thought suitable to rule the country. The plans for divorce caused a lot of gossip at court, but the King tried to stop Queen Catherine from finding out until it was all settled, so the divorce was referred to as the king's "Secret Matter". A special court was held, with Wolsey leading it, to decide whether the divorce should be allowed. An official from the Pope in Rome was brought over and a trial was held. The official stated that he could not come to a conclusion and the case would have to be decided by the Pope. The Pope was afraid of what would happen if he allowed the divorce, so he did not make a decision. In the meantime, Anne and King Henry were becoming more and more impatient.
Marriage.
Anne agreed to become Henry's mistress by 1532 and she soon became pregnant. This meant that Anne needed to be married quickly to Henry. If the baby had been born when they were not married, it would not be possible for the child to become the heir to the throne. Anne was therefore married to Henry on January 25, 1533, even though the divorce had not come through. Henry's marriage to Catherine of Aragon was declared illegal in the following May by Archbishop Cranmer, and Catherine was sent away from court and treated as though she had never been married to Henry.
It was a disappointment to Henry when Anne gave birth to a daughter, Elizabeth, instead of the son he had hoped for. Later, Anne became pregnant again, but had a miscarriage. Henry started to worry that Anne could not give him a healthy male child. Henry's new secretary, Thomas Cromwell, looked for a way to get rid of Anne so that Henry could marry again. He found people who said that Anne had been the lover of other men while she was married to King Henry. She was put on trial and found guilty of adultery and incest, although she was probably innocent. The men who were accused of being her lovers were Sir Francis Weston, her musician Mark Smeaton, Sir Henry Norris, William Brereton, and her brother Viscount Rochford George Boleyn. All of them were executed.
Death.
Anne was executed on May 19, 1536 in the Tower of London, London, England. She was buried in the Chapel Royal of Saint Peter ad Vincula, within the Tower of London.


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