1 June 1533 – Anne Boleyn is crowned queen

Posted By on June 1, 2017

On 1st June 1533, Whitsun, Henry VIII’s second wife, Anne Boleyn, was crowned queen at Westminster Abbey by her good friend Archbishop Thomas Cranmer.

Anne Boleyn was about six months pregnant and had been married to the king since their official, but secret, ceremony on 25th January 1533. Their marriage had been proclaimed valid just four days before the coronation and this coronation ceremony was the couple’s moment of triumph after the years of waiting and legal wranglings.

Anne must have been so tired after the procession the previous day, but she still managed to make it through the long coronation service and banquet of around 80 dishes.

Click here to read more about Anne’s special day.

12 thoughts on “1 June 1533 – Anne Boleyn is crowned queen”

  1. Ellen Habbershaw says:

    Great article Claire. Superb as always.

  2. Christine says:

    A singular honour indeed for Anne to have the crown of St. Edward on her head, as noted it was reserved for the reigning monarch, how proud her and her family must have been as they made their way into the grand ancient hall of Westminster and she sat on King Edwards chair, she was late in pregnancy and had already endured the coronation celebrations the previous day, I bet London looked absolutely beautiful, we no it was a dirty city with no sanitation and the stinking Thames with ragged beggars, but I bet on that day it looked lovely with the brightly coloured pennants flying and the gorgeously apparelled men and women in all their finery, and Anne herself looking as stylish as ever dripping in jewels and purple velvet and ermine, her lustrous hair flowing behind her, there was wine in the fountains and fresh fruits and cream and music and fanfare, us British have always been good at pomp and ceremony and I bet Anne Boleyns coronation was as good as Elizabeth 11’s or any other queens or Kings, how tired she must have been but she endured it remarkably well, she had women with her to see to her every comfort yet the day must have seemed endless, how grateful she must have been when it was all over and she could lie on her bed, kick her shoes off and just close her eyes, she had done it, she was queen at last but the battle was not yet over now she had to bear a healthy son.

  3. Globerose says:

    Umm- Henry VIII wore The Tudor Crown at his Coronation and Katharine wore “the smaller crown of the Queen Consorts of England.” But then, here we find Anne Boleyn, Henry’s second queen, crowned by Cranmer in “an unprecedented way for a queen consort” with no less than the crown of a king, that of Edward the Confessor. What are we thinking Henry meant by this?

    1. A says:

      Henry was thinking of a golden beginning, a new age, a glorious future in which Anne gave birth to a son and proved that he was entirely justified in putting aside Katherine and breaking with Rome. He viewed this marriage as a true marriage, a divinely sanctioned marriage, a marriage blessed by the Almighty, whereas the Aragon marriage was doomed and fruitless. Henry was making a grandiose statement, he was declaring that the Reformation and his second marriage went hand in hand. Anne would provide the heir and England would enjoy a golden future.

    2. Christine says:

      Who knows Globerose, we have to remember he loved her truly and maybe he just wanted to afford her this singular honour.

    3. Claire says:

      There are two main theories:
      1) That he was making sure that everyone knew that Anne was his rightful queen – good old propaganda!
      2) That he thought that Anne was carrying a boy and so was crowning the prince she was carrying as the heir to the throne.

      Great propaganda whichever is true.

  4. Banditqueen says:

    Anne must have been hot and tired, but very excited and upbeat. She would need the small breaks and it must have been a sense of triumph. After all she was carrying what was hoped to be the expectant heir to the throne. I think Henry chose to honour Anne with the Sovereign ‘s crown of Saint Edward to make the point that she was a true Queen. It was a singular honour and a real political statement. Remember the majority of the ordinary people and even some of his own nobles still begrudged Anne her title as Queen and supported Queen Katherine. By having Anne crowned with the sacred crown of Kings Henry was symbolically raising her status above any other women, including his first wife. For those who had any doubts her position would now be unassailable.

    1. Christine says:

      Yes I think that must have been the case.

  5. Bonnie says:

    I agree- he was making a statement to the country and the rest of Europe about the validity of the marriage and the legitimacy of the son about to be born. He didn’t truly love Anne-three years from now he was ordering her death and had her replacement waiting in the wings. I doubt Henry truly loved anyone except himself

    1. Gail Marion says:

      I believe he did love Anne initially, evidenced by how much he sacrificed to keep her, but the love wore thin over time and but for her pregnancy and expected deliverance of a son she would have been discarded. The deliverance of a daughter sounded her death knell.

      1. Banditqueen says:

        I believe Henry began by desiring Anne, as men do, taking a fancy to her if you wish, but as she wasn’t taken by his fancy and rejected him, Henry became more interested. As time went on he became more enamoured and interested in spending time with Anne for himself. His letters testify to ardent love and although we don’t have her replies we know she replied, because Henry said she did. Anne went away from him to Hever, but his heart followed and he found common ground with her. By 1527 the couple were spending more time together and were a proper couple. In fact, a tease of evidence, in a letter to ask for the divorce to marry Anne, sent to Rome, allows us to argue that they had agreed to marry sometime by the end of that Summer. There was a growing partnership which developed as Henry appreciated her charm and brains, intellect, interests in reform and her talents as a dancer and music as well as a sexy, foxy lady. They had a lot in common. Henry was still in love with Anne for the first two years of their marriage, even with all the difficulties. I don’t agree that having a daughter was the start of her downfall and she wasn’t executed because she didn’t have a son. Henry was still attracted to Anne during her second pregnancy in 1534 and he only began to show some disappointment later that year after she lost her child. There is evidence of some difficulty getting pregnant again and political movements were blamed on Anne, causing a brief break between them. Anne showed definate signs of strain and it is in this period that she is credited as making obscure but noteworthy threats against Mary and Katherine. However, it is most definitely the case that Anne and Henry had reconciled by the Summer and Autumn 1535 and they went on a triumphant progress, at the end of which, Anne was again pregnant. What we do know now with history and hindsight is that this was Anne’s last pregnancy and when Henry learned that she had miscarried a son, his reaction was recorded in detail and more terrible than any other times. We don’t know for certain how many pregnancies Anne had, but three is about right. It is possible that Anne was on notice or at least believed this was her last chance, but Henry changed after this and Anne was left more vulnerable.

        Anne also had a moment of great triumph, merely three weeks before she lost her baby boy. Katherine of Aragon died on 7th January, leaving Anne as undisputed Queen. Henry and Anne are both reported as being happy and had a party. Elizabeth was paraded around the Court and jousting followed. Anne suffered a miscarriage between 24th and 29th January, after Henry’s fall from his jousting horse and may have been unconscious for two hours (evidence is contradictory)and Anne is believed to have found Henry with Jane Seymour soon afterwards. The joint shock caused a miscarriage of a male foetus aged about four months old and Henry is recorded as being very upset and doubting he would now have sons. Anne was also upset and retorted that her heart broke to see Henry loved others. Things were not the same afterwards.

        Nobody can be certain, but most historians agree that this left Anne more vulnerable and open to attack. Henry, if he did think about his marriage now, didn’t do anything until April about it. Henry and Cromwell both consulted an expert on canon law, so we have evidence that Henry was thinking of an annulment before his fatal decision to try and execute his wife for adultery and treason. There are signs that it is in this five months prior to her final fall that Henry was looking elsewhere, that he did fall out of love with Anne. He acted, however, to show he was committed to Anne, causing confusion or perhaps misdirection. The rumours about Anne, the incident with Herny Norris, innocent though it was, the invention of evidence of guilt with five men, turned any last bits of love into hate. Ironically, that Henry hated Anne with such a passion to want her dead and out of his life can be further seen as evidence that he had for a long time loved her. I really don’t think it’s a fair thing to say that Henry Viii didn’t ever love anyone but himself. For one thing, the younger Henry showed himself very capable of real love. For another, we can’t see into the heart or soul of another human being, so we don’t know how he loved or didn’t love. I would say that as time passed into the last 10 years of his life that he became more selfish and more paranoid, plus with this an ability to strike out at those he professed to love with increasing violence. His capacity to love may have diminished. His heart could have turned colder. Whatever Henry’s feelings by the end of their relationship, I do believe that on these days in June 1533 Henry and Anne were very much in love and had no reason to believe it would all go wrong.

  6. Globerose says:

    Anyone else drifting along the long and winding road towards the conclusion suggesting Henry VIII was all about this evidentiary obsession with a male heir, and only an heir male, and that everything he did at that time was pursuant to that one goal, and that nothing else mattered: his one ruling idee fixe? Oh he was undoubtedly infatuated with Anne, and many other exceptional men were too, in the beginning, but Katharine, dear Katharine, made war upon his obsession and I can’t help but feel this, as much as any emotional desires that Henry had for Anne, fuelled his passion for ‘the kill’ (in hunting parlance). He seems to have needed to win, and when Katharine died, and Anne lost her baby, everything changed: and all that remained was this primary raging obsession.

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