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Henry or Cromwell the mastermind behind Anne's death?
August 17, 2014
8:12 pm
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Hannele
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Iguazu said Only by exposing Anne as a multiple adulteress and as a traitor could Henry get out of the marriage and the whole affair unscathed. He wanted to be rid of her but could never have divorced her because THIS would have made him a laughing stock indeed and would not have solved his problem – the need to produce an uncontested male heir with another wife. With Anne guilty of horrible crimes Henry could present himself as the poor victim of an evil woman who had deceived him all along. .

But it was not like. In those days, there were many stories and plays about an elderly man being betrayed by a younger wife. The husband who was cuckolded was by no means pitied but laughed at, as it was assumed that he could not satisfy his wife. And if a man could not keep order in his own house, he could be trusted tasks in public sphere.

This was even made crystal clear in Anne’s clear when his brother was claimed to have said that king had neither skill nor vigor to satisfy a woman.

So, Anne’s trial brought great shame not only to her but to Henry as well.

Therefore, it is unlikely that Henry had wanted it, so the scenario that he had ordered the trial even if he knew that Anne was innocent must be left out.

August 18, 2014
2:25 am
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Anyanka
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While I understand your point about Chaucer et al mocking cuckolds , Chapuys made a point of talking about Henry rejoycing in his cuckolds’s horns during and after the trials.

The whole issue of “skill and potency” was’t supposed to be read out in open court, George read it out as a “take that” to Cromwell since he knew he was condemned before he had had any charges laid against him nor been allowed to speak a word in his defence.

It's always bunnies.

August 18, 2014
8:19 am
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Anyanka said

While I understand your point about Chaucer et al mocking cuckolds , Chapuys made a point of talking about Henry rejoycing in his cuckolds’s horns during and after the trials.

Yes, he seemed that he didn’t care, but was it really so? Any other man would have been felt humiliated, even if he didn’t care for his wife at all, knowing people were laughing behind his back. Henry’s sudden marriage was perhaps a means to prove them wrong, besides other things.

August 19, 2014
12:23 am
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Anyanka
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Hannele said

Anyanka said

While I understand your point about Chaucer et al mocking cuckolds , Chapuys made a point of talking about Henry rejoycing in his cuckolds’s horns during and after the trials.

Yes, he seemed that he didn’t care, but was it really so? Any other man would have been felt humiliated, even if he didn’t care for his wife at all, knowing people were laughing behind his back. Henry’s sudden marriage was perhaps a means to prove them wrong, besides other things.

That’s the big thing with Our Henry…how much was real and how much was Henry playing for sympathy..

On the one hand, the reports from Chapuys and the Venetian Calander note that Henry wasn’t bothered about Anne’s lovers, noting that she had been unfaithful to him with up to 100 men , in a court where the queen was constantly surrounded by her attendants who may or may not have had the king’s/queen’s/own family intereasts at heart.

While Anne was arrested, awaiting her show triaL ..
Our Hal was remaining secluded nursing his broken …heart ….
except..
And at the same time ,
Henry was noted to be plying the tides up and down the Thames to visit the houses of noble men who where known to be part of the pro-Jane faction..
where Jane was staying …
in lighted barges..music playing.
to the extent that the only known letter to Jane in Henry’s hand talked about trying to silence the ballard makers who were reporting that Henry was chasing Jane and attempting to discredit Anne unfairly..

Looking the charges…many of them required Anne to be in 2 places at once and/or one or more of her paramours to be gifted with a prehensile male endowment..

It's always bunnies.

August 19, 2014
12:29 pm
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Anyanka said Looking the charges…many of them required Anne to be in 2 places at once and/or one or more of her paramours to be gifted with a prehensile male endowment..

Yes, and Anne wanting sex before being churched, or being pregnant (which in that age meant a danger a baby, and Anne’s whole position depended on her giving birth a healthy son).

I can’t understand why Bernard thinks that he can simply miss the dates as unimportant. Even if a fact of being alone with a man is not a proof of adultery, it is at least the first condition.

Apart from Smeaton’s confession, the dates could have only come from the Queen’s ladies who were constantly with her. While it is true that one can usually not remember what happened, say, in 19th October 2011, that is, one cannot remember if it was a quite usual day, but one certainly remembers if something unusual happened. Or, if one does not remember an exact date, then one at least remembers “it was a day after we played cards and I for once won”. Before all, at least somebody of the Queen’s ladies would have known even more because without her help, having an affair, still less having many affairs, would simply have not been possible to Anne.

August 21, 2014
8:27 am
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Aud
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I will lay the blame solely at Henry’s feet, the removal of a Queen would require his approval and there is no doubt in my mind that he approved of what happened to Anne. Starkey said it best that Henry believed the lies about Anne Boleyn because it was convenient, he was tired of her and desired an heir and he knew those charges would allow him to move on and marry against, so be convinced himself that they were true. Cromwell was his servant.

August 23, 2014
4:56 am
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Hannele said

Anyanka said Looking the charges…many of them required Anne to be in 2 places at once and/or one or more of her paramours to be gifted with a prehensile male endowment..

Yes, and Anne wanting sex before being churched, or being pregnant (which in that age meant a danger a baby, and Anne’s whole position depended on her giving birth a healthy son).

Honesty as a 21st C mother, those few weeks after giving birth were lifesavers. There was no way I wanted sex in those few weeks. recovering from the birth and doing basic household chores was all I was good for….

I can’t understand why Bernard thinks that he can simply miss the dates as unimportant. Even if a fact of being alone with a man is not a proof of adultery, it is at least the first condition.

Sounds like it ties into the belife that men and women only ever see the opposite sex as potential bed-mates and not as people..

Apart from Smeaton’s confession, the dates could have only come from the Queen’s ladies who were constantly with her. While it is true that one can usually not remember what happened, say, in 19th October 2011, that is, one cannot remember if it was a quite usual day, but one certainly remembers if something unusual happened. Or, if one does not remember an exact date, then one at least remembers “it was a day after we played cards and I for once won”. Before all, at least somebody of the Queen’s ladies would have known even more because without her help, having an affair, still less having many affairs, would simply have not been possible to Anne.

True..I used to commute along the M25 twice a day for however many working days/weeks of a year for 6 years..I can barely remember a handful of journeys during that time.

I remember what I was doing the day Diana, Princess of Wales died…(being bored by all the news reports),,though I can’t remember anything other than it was a Sunday in August in the late 1990’s..

It's always bunnies.

August 23, 2014
5:25 pm
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Personally I think it was 6 of 1 and half a dozen of the same thing. Cromwell’s venom against Anne was fueled by the fact she had directly attacked him over his useage of Church money and properties. She felt that it should have gone towards good causes such as Schools and Hospitals and helping the poor etc. Cromwell who was under Henry’s thumb although Cromwell thought he was the one in control, had better ideas for the money and used it to feather Henry’s well feathered nest, as well as seeing to it that his nest was also well feathered.
Henry’s venom against Anne was fueled by greif for K.O.A and rage that once again Anne had failed in her promise to him about giving him a longed for son. In Henry’s tiny (well micro really) mind, Anne had betrayed him, so therefore she was of no further use to him, once he felt like that nothing anyone said or did could have changed that, and had to be got rid of by any means possible.
It was just a lucky coincidence that both Henry and Cromwell at that time were pissed off at Anne for the 2 different reason, and between them concocted a story of sexual perversion, infidelity, incest and witchcraft (a charge that was never brought against her by the way. But due to the rumours they spread about her, i.e 6 fingers and 3 nipples it was wholely believed that she was indeed a witch) Those crimes (Ha Ha Ha) she was charged with were enough to warrant her death.

Cromwell was rubbing his hands together, because he had got rid of a rival when Anne was murdered, he certainly picked his moment well to put the poison down about Anne. Henry’s greif and I do believe he did greive K.O.A’s death was a great blow to him. I agree that he said “We are free from all threat of war” and yes he and Anne gave a banquet to supposedly celebrate her death and dressing in bright yellow etc…however Yellow was the mourning colour for Spanish royalty, and the celebrations given were perhaps not so much to do with her death, but more of a celebration of her life. Yes again Henry’s treatment of her after 1527 was diabolical, but perhaps with this banquet he had hoped the world would see that he did still have some respect for her, even if he didn’t feel that way personally.
Anne I think perhaps rocked the boat a little when it came to this banquet, due to her elation at being the undisputed Queen at last. She was perhaps a little OTT in her celebration of the fact that K.O.A was finally dead. I can understand her high spirits, for she had lived under a K.O.A shaped cloud for 9 years (if we take 1527 as the marker point for Henry’s ardent pursuit of Anne) now that cloud had be lifted, she was no longer the pretended Queen of England she really was the Queen of England. Coupled with the fact that she was pregnant, and that her child (if it was boy) would at last be seen as the only true and lawful heir to England. She knew that Elizabeth would always be seen as the bastard brat no matter how many decrees or laws were passed through parliament to state otherwise.
Mary would always come first in the line of succession, and indeed if Jane’s son Edward had died either at birth or in infancy Mary was always destined to be Queen no matter what.
Anyway I digress, the point is that up until that banquet Henry was in a kind of limbo land, stunned disbelief that the woman he had shared a largest part of his life with was dead, the penny dropped at that banquet and he realised that despite his treatment of her, that she really had been a good wife to him. She had put up with a lot of his crap and still smiled about it, and what was more she had helped him a great deal when dealing with matters of state.

Semper Fidelis, quod sum quod

August 31, 2014
10:57 am
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I think Ives makes a strong case for Cromwell’s “coup”, but the evidence is by no means unambiguous.

Why did Henry insist on Anne’s recognition as Queen in late April? To conceal his aim to put her aside? But he also made himself a laughingstock by trusting a adulterous wife in the letters to his ambassadors only days before the scandal broke up. Was he really so dubious, as Mantel’s Cromwell thinks, that he wanted both being right (in divorcing KOA and marrying) and get rid of Anne?

If Henry simply wanted to get rid of Anne, I find it hard to believe that she could not have persuaded to accept divorce (at least if she had put before her a choice of death and Elizabeth as a bastard), or that Henry had voluntarily chosen the trial which would show him with horns. An older husband betrayed with a younger wife with five lovers is certainly a laughingstock much, much more than a man who twists grounds for divorce after his current needs.

Then, if the case of adultery was chosen, and Smeaton confessed, why was that not enough? A Queen’s adultery was not at that tine a crime, so she could be put in the nunnery. Norris was obviously needed to make adultery to treason, plotting the king’s death. And more “lovers” was selected to blacken Anne’s reputation for good. But again, this also smeared Henry’s honor.

But there is also a strong feeling that it was a question of political “putsch” of Boleyn faction: Anne could not simply left a title of Marquess and and those close to her (especially her brother George and Norris) could not hold their positions, for if the king would again change his mind, those who had made the “putsch” or benefited because of it, would be in danger. That is the strongest case for Cromwell’s guilt as well the speed all was done (compared with Catherine Howard who was interrogated several times) so that Henry had not time to think over.

Of course if could also be Henry who, if he was like Machiavelli’s Prince, realizing the popular mood of discontent, presented the public the Queen and her lovers as a scapegoat in the usual way of the rulers: the king is good by nature, he has only given bad advice, so remove those who are responsible for it and all would be good.

The most puzzling matter is Henry’s (at least seemingly) indifferent behavior, self-pity and joyous feasting with Jane and ladies, when Anne was in the Tower whereas he broke down hearing the testimony against Katherine Howard. Did he at that time care of Anne so little that her betrayal meant him nothing at all? Or was he indifferent because he wanted to get rid of her although he knew that she was innocent? Did he act otherwise than he really felt because he could not admit that his honor has been damaged in front of all the world? Did he even hasten to marry Jane in haste, not because he was in love with her but in order to repair his honor and she was the next woman who was available?

Back to earlier happenings: what Henry’s aim when he gave Jane Cromwell’s room, to make her his mistress or his wife? Or was it Jane who, by refusing money after accepting earlier gifts and even sitting on the kings knee, changed her aim couched by her relatives?

It is a pity we don’t know whether Henry visited Anne’s bed after her miscarriage in January. If he did, it would clear that he thought that a son by her was still possible and, therefore, he had not decided to end his marriage with her.

As it was, all ultimately depends on Henry’s character: was he easily duped? Was he capable in cold blood to let innocent persons close to him to die? Was he capable of love at all?

As it is.

August 31, 2014
12:23 pm
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Hannele said

I think Ives makes a strong case for Cromwell’s “coup”, but the evidence is by no means unambiguous.

Why did Henry insist on Anne’s recognition as Queen in late April? To conceal his aim to put her aside? But he also made himself a laughingstock by trusting a adulterous wife in the letters to his ambassadors only days before the scandal broke up. Was he really so dubious, as Mantel’s Cromwell thinks, that he wanted both being right (in divorcing KOA and marrying) and get rid of Anne?

If Henry simply wanted to get rid of Anne, I find it hard to believe that she could not have persuaded to accept divorce (at least if she had put before her a choice of death and Elizabeth as a bastard), or that Henry had voluntarily chosen the trial which would show him with horns. An older husband betrayed with a younger wife with five lovers is certainly a laughingstock much, much more than a man who twists grounds for divorce after his current needs.

Then, if the case of adultery was chosen, and Smeaton confessed, why was that not enough? A Queen’s adultery was not at that tine a crime, so she could be put in the nunnery. Norris was obviously needed to make adultery to treason, plotting the king’s death. And more “lovers” was selected to blacken Anne’s reputation for good. But again, this also smeared Henry’s honor.

But there is also a strong feeling that it was a question of political “putsch” of Boleyn faction: Anne could not simply left a title of Marquess and and those close to her (especially her brother George and Norris) could not hold their positions, for if the king would again change his mind, those who had made the “putsch” or benefited because of it, would be in danger. That is the strongest case for Cromwell’s guilt as well the speed all was done (compared with Catherine Howard who was interrogated several times) so that Henry had not time to think over.

Of course if could also be Henry who, if he was like Machiavelli’s Prince, realizing the popular mood of discontent, presented the public the Queen and her lovers as a scapegoat in the usual way of the rulers: the king is good by nature, he has only given bad advice, so remove those who are responsible for it and all would be good.

The most puzzling matter is Henry’s (at least seemingly) indifferent behavior, self-pity and joyous feasting with Jane and ladies, when Anne was in the Tower whereas he broke down hearing the testimony against Katherine Howard. Did he at that time care of Anne so little that her betrayal meant him nothing at all? Or was he indifferent because he wanted to get rid of her although he knew that she was innocent? Did he act otherwise than he really felt because he could not admit that his honor has been damaged in front of all the world? Did he even hasten to marry Jane in haste, not because he was in love with her but in order to repair his honor and she was the next woman who was available?

Back to earlier happenings: what Henry’s aim when he gave Jane Cromwell’s room, to make her his mistress or his wife? Or was it Jane who, by refusing money after accepting earlier gifts and even sitting on the kings knee, changed her aim couched by her relatives?

It is a pity we don’t know whether Henry visited Anne’s bed after her miscarriage in January. If he did, it would clear that he thought that a son by her was still possible and, therefore, he had not decided to end his marriage with her.

As it was, all ultimately depends on Henry’s character: was he easily duped? Was he capable in cold blood to let innocent persons close to him to die? Was he capable of love at all?

As it is.

Is Henry capable of something like this? Well yes, absolutely, and frankly I find it hard to believe that Cromwell would move against the King’s wife without knowing the King wanted to get rid of her. It was too dangerous and risky a move for him to make. Why would Henry do such a thing? Because he didn’t want another wife in the background while he went into another marriage. He didn’t want anyone questioning his children with Jane, like they did with Anne. Knowing Anne’s temperament, he probably thought that she would be raging and fighting against the annulment, especially when it affected Elizabeth. Personally, I really don’t make too much of Henry and the whole Chapuys/Anne incident. He was duplicitous like this. Against Starkey said it best: “the best liars are the ones that convince themselves” and this was in reference to Henry and what happened to Anne Boleyn’s execution.

As for Cromwell, he was working on behalf of the King and took the time to take out some political “rivals/nuisances” as well. For instance, Brereton and the Welch Marshes was what got him included as one of the “guilty” men.

The Boleyn faction? They were unpopular and hated by the majority though they did have their supporters. I really don’t see an instance of Henry changing his mind, because if he had let Anne live, he would doubtless marry once more and probably have another child. Anne was 35/34 by the time of her death, and that was middle aged by Tudor standards, so when was Henry going to change his mind in regards to her? Henry definitely had a cruel streak in him and was utterly ruthless. Look what he did to KOA and Princess Mary, his first child. The threats that he made against Mary. People were disposable to Henry and that is what Anne had become to him in 1536 after the miscarriage.

As for why would Henry consent to adultery charges, well I would say he was well aware of his reputation, and he couldn’t afford to appear to be doing the same thing over and over again. He didn’t want to look like the aggressor, but like the victim.

And I am going to find that direct quote where Henry warns Jane about how Anne died and he didn’t mention anything to do with adultery. Very chilling when you think about him saying something like that.

September 1, 2014
9:40 pm
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Aud said As for why would Henry consent to adultery charges, well I would say he was well aware of his reputation, and he couldn’t afford to appear to be doing the same thing over and over again. He didn’t want to look like the aggressor, but like the victim.

Maybe a man nowadays would like to be seen rather a victim but at that time it was the worst possible fate. A victim was powerless, and the worst was to be a victim of a woman.

A betrayed husband was not pitied but only laughed and despised. Most of all, he was regarded less a man. Why would any man *want* that?

It is another matter if Henry believed in Anne’s guilt. If Henry had indeed potency problems and he believed that Anne had ridiculed him behind his back, he would have been insecure enough to believe the charges of adultery.

September 2, 2014
3:03 am
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Hannele said

Aud said As for why would Henry consent to adultery charges, well I would say he was well aware of his reputation, and he couldn’t afford to appear to be doing the same thing over and over again. He didn’t want to look like the aggressor, but like the victim.

Maybe a man nowadays would like to be seen rather a victim but at that time it was the worst possible fate. A victim was powerless, and the worst was to be a victim of a woman.

A betrayed husband was not pitied but only laughed and despised. Most of all, he was regarded less a man. Why would any man *want* that?

It is another matter if Henry believed in Anne’s guilt. If Henry had indeed potency problems and he believed that Anne had ridiculed him behind his back, he would have been insecure enough to believe the charges of adultery.

And what would Henry look like if people of England and Europe thought once more he was ridding himself of his wife on false and convenient charges just like the first one? He is already alienated from Rome, the Catholic countries, etc. Henry VIII loved being the victim, and by that I don’t mean some weak defenseless man, but for him victim was about being wronged. He would never take responsibility, it would always be someone else’s fault. The “cuckholded” husband, the betrayed king, etc, remember everything was always someone else’s fault and there was no way that the situation with Anne was going to be different. And a cuckholded husband may have been mocked, but in those times, it was never acceptable for a wife to betray her husband.

Except, that I don’t believe that Henry believed those charges, it’s not a stretch to believe that he would tell lies for his own benefit. For comparison look at his situation with Anne of Cleves, and how he admitted that he could not consummate his marriage with Anne of Cleves. He wanted Anne dead, and what he wanted, he almost always got.

September 2, 2014
6:59 pm
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Excellent posts ladies.
Henry did look bad to the European courts. His desire to marry again immediately was going to fix that. In order to stop the rumors brought out in the trials, he was going to marry Jane immediately and prove he could have relations and sons with another wife. And Henry believed the shame was to fall on Anne. She was the evil woman. She was the whore. That is why Mark Smeaton was accused. Anne would bed anyone including a lowly musician. Poor Henry didn’t know what she was like when he married her. She fooled him completely. (despite the 7 previous years before he married her. Rolling eyes to heaven) Nothing was ever Henry’s fault.
Henry did not act like the cuckhold at all. He partied from the day Anne was arrested. He also was very involved in the decisions about Anne’s execution. He planned it right down to how high the scaffold should be, and he also sent for the swordsman in France. That was his choice and the order could only have come from him. (Which somewhere on these pages there is a discussion on how long that took and he would have been sent for before Anne’s trial. He arrived 9 days after he was sent for.) This wasn’t a man who was worried about what was said about him.
Henry did not want to go through another messy annulment like he did with Katherine. We don’t know whether Anne would have accepted Henry’s terms and walked away. Henry must not have thought she would. He never gave her the option. His choice was to eliminate her.
It is my opinion that Henry knew right from the beginning what was going on and he condoned it. He walked away and allowed Anne to be humiliated and then he put her to death. He was beyond cruel.

September 3, 2014
12:25 am
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Sharon said

Excellent posts ladies.
Henry did look bad to the European courts. His desire to marry again immediately was going to fix that. In order to stop the rumors brought out in the trials, he was going to marry Jane immediately and prove he could have relations and sons with another wife. And Henry believed the shame was to fall on Anne. She was the evil woman. She was the whore. That is why Mark Smeaton was accused. Anne would bed anyone including a lowly musician. Poor Henry didn’t know what she was like when he married her. She fooled him completely. (despite the 7 previous years before he married her. Rolling eyes to heaven) Nothing was ever Henry’s fault.
Henry did not act like the cuckhold at all. He partied from the day Anne was arrested. He also was very involved in the decisions about Anne’s execution. He planned it right down to how high the scaffold should be, and he also sent for the swordsman in France. That was his choice and the order could only have come from him. (Which somewhere on these pages there is a discussion on how long that took and he would have been sent for before Anne’s trial. He arrived 9 days after he was sent for.) This wasn’t a man who was worried about what was said about him.
Henry did not want to go through another messy annulment like he did with Katherine. We don’t know whether Anne would have accepted Henry’s terms and walked away. Henry must not have thought she would. He never gave her the option. His choice was to eliminate her.
It is my opinion that Henry knew right from the beginning what was going on and he condoned it. He walked away and allowed Anne to be humiliated and then he put her to death. He was beyond cruel.

I absolutely agree, great post Sharon! The man probably thought that with Anne being so unpopular, that people would readily believe the charges against her, and in some instances this was true, but in others, there was skepticism. I mean come on, you know something is wrong if Chapuys is calling out what is wrong with the trial of a woman he absolutely loathed. And I agree, Henry probably thought that with Anne’s fiery nature that she wouldn’t accept an annulment. And I also like to point out that Henry was a reader of Machiavelli’s The Prince, a book where it speaks of the “virtue of inhuman cruelty” or “where a prince must appear to keep his word”, etc. I think some Machiavellinism was applied here in that he killed Anne to avoid the process of an annulment.

September 3, 2014
5:51 am
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We mustn’t also forget that Henry had his marriage to Anne annulled on grounds of her ‘pre-contract’ to Henry Percy before her execution. Thus, according to him, she was never his wife in the first place, so how could she commit adultery against Henry?

Talk about having your cake………

September 3, 2014
4:28 pm
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Jasmine said

We mustn’t also forget that Henry had his marriage to Anne annulled on grounds of her ‘pre-contract’ to Henry Percy before her execution. Thus, according to him, she was never his wife in the first place, so how could she commit adultery against Henry?

Talk about having your cake………

With Henry the issue is, that when he wants someone dead, that person is not going to get out of it, even when you have legal issue arising from the fact, such as Anne not being guilty of adultery if she was his wife. Remember when Jane Parker went insane and was thus not going to be executed because it was against the law to execute an insane person, Henry changed the law so he could have her executed. And I mention the example of Robert Aske who pleaded not to suffer the penalty of hanging, drawing, and quartering and Henry then had him hung in chains which prolonged his death apparently to days.

September 3, 2014
6:20 pm
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Whatever the grounds were for the annulment, in the end adultery was not what condemned Anne. True, the annulment meant she was never married to Henry.
Even though she was accused of adultery, it was not a crime at this time. If Anne consented to sleep with 100 men, that was not a criminal offence. If she had not consented, that would be treason, but not against her. The queen was not treasonably violated according to the charges. She consented. That was a sideshow to ruin Anne’s reputation. There was to be no sympathy for her.
Rumors that Anne was going to poison Henry and the stories that Mary and Katherine were to be poisoned were brought in, but Anne wasn’t charged with any poisoning charges. They were rumors and were brought in to ruin Anne.
The fact that she danced with the men, and that George had lead Anne into the dance,which was not a crime, was brought up. Her writing to George to tell him she was pregnant, was brought in.
Every piece of information they could think of, that meant very little in respect to the charges, was brought up at the trial to vilify Anne.
The crime was talking about the king’s death, which she was charged with, along with Norris when she said ‘you look for dead man’s shoes.’ Then there is the incest charge.

September 3, 2014
6:40 pm
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Sharon said

Whatever the grounds were for the annulment, in the end adultery was not what condemned Anne. True, the annulment meant she was never married to Henry.
Even though she was accused of adultery, it was not a crime at this time. If Anne consented to sleep with 100 men, that was not a criminal offence. If she had not consented, that would be treason, but not against her. The queen was not treasonably violated according to the charges. She consented. That was a sideshow to ruin Anne’s reputation. There was to be no sympathy for her.
Rumors that Anne was going to poison Henry and the stories that Mary and Katherine were to be poisoned were brought in, but Anne wasn’t charged with any poisoning charges. They were rumors and were brought in to ruin Anne.
The fact that she danced with the men, and that George had lead Anne into the dance,which was not a crime, was brought up. Her writing to George to tell him she was pregnant, was brought in.
Every piece of information they could think of, that meant very little in respect to the charges, was brought up at the trial to vilify Anne.
The crime was talking about the king’s death, which she was charged with, along with Norris when she said ‘you look for dead man’s shoes.’ Then there is the incest charge.

Yes, I believe it was the Treason Act of 1534 that Anne Boleyn would have been condemned under. However, I know that it was at one time treason to commit adulator with the King’s wife. There was a Treason Act of 1351 that included this crime. From what I understand, just because several other Treasons act were followed, doesn’t mean that the previous ones were invalid. The case is, was it still considered treason for a Queen to commit adultery?

September 3, 2014
7:12 pm
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Sharon
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In The Life and Death of Anne Boleyn, by Eric Ives, he seems to think adultery was not a crime during this time. He calls the adultery charges immaterial. “to have intercourse with a queen who consented was no crime at common law—ill advised to be sure, but punishable only by the Church courts as an affront to morality.” Page 344. He explains “the indictment referred to Anne’s adultery as treasonous but the fact that the Treasons Act of 1352 did not cover adultery by a queen is indicated by inclusion of the offence in subsequent legislation: 33 Henry VIII c. 21” It became a crime after the fact.

September 3, 2014
7:37 pm
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Hannele
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Sharon said

In The Life and Death of Anne Boleyn, by Eric Ives, he seems to think adultery was not a crime during this time. He calls the adultery charges immaterial. “to have intercourse with a queen who consented was no crime at common law—ill advised to be sure, but punishable only by the Church courts as an affront to morality.” Page 344. He explains “the indictment referred to Anne’s adultery as treasonous but the fact that the Treasons Act of 1352 did not cover adultery by a queen is indicated by inclusion of the offence in subsequent legislation: 33 Henry VIII c. 21” It became a crime after the fact.

True enough, but there was such a crime as “violation of the Queen” and that could be defined more broadly than rape, in the same way as any resistance against the king’s authorities was crime.

In any case, laying with the Queen put the lawful succession in danger, so it could be defined a crime against Henry’s new Succession Act.

However, usually an adulterous Queen was put in the nunnery. It was therefore that “plotting the King’s death” was needed.

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