20 May 1536 – Henry VIII wastes no time…

Posted By on May 20, 2020

If I could go back in time and give Henry VIII a piece of mind, I would… well, perhaps not. It might not be safe to do that!

The speed of events in May 1536 never fails to shock me, and the speed with which Henry VIII moved on to wife number 3 disgusts me. Whatever his involvement in Anne Boleyn’s fall, to get a dispensation to marry wife number 3 on the very day Anne was executed is unseemly, and then to get betrothed the next day… Well, it just leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

I know that I’m looking at it with my 21st century values, but 16th century people were shocked too. Henry VIII had to reassure Jane that he was taking action regarding a pamphlet that had been published deriding their relationship while Anne was still alive and imprisoned in the Tower, and Chapuys wrote of gossip about the king and Jane. It was just as unseemly to Tudor people.

Here’s my video talk on this day in 1536:

And you can read more about the king and Jane’s relationship in my article here.