Did Anne’s family push her into the marriage?

Was it Anne Boleyn's ambition or her family pushing her that led to her marriage with Henry? Such a tough question. In my opinion it was a combination of the two. I don't believe that Thomas Boleyn was as manipulative as "The Tudors" and "Other Boleyn Girl" make out but I don't think he was the angel that Joanna Denny portrays either, who tried to protect his daughter from Henry. I think Thomas saw an opportunity and made sure that his daughter took it.
As far as Anne is concerned, I do not believe that she was ruthless, cunning or had her eye on the crown. In my opinion, she was attracted to the King but did not want to end up just a notch on his bedpost and used and abused like her sister. Anne did not tangle her virtue as bait to ensnare the King but refused to give it up to him and was strong enough to say "no". Henry was infatuated with her and so proposed and then Anne acted on this and did all in her power to become his wife and Queen. Her family obviously supported her in this and "rallied the troops".
Perhaps I am alone in thinking that Anne was not ruthless and ambitious, but I just can't see it. Tempting the King and plotting could have so easily backfired and it was not as if the King had to look very hard for a mistress, and there was no precedent, Anne was the first "mistress" to be raised in such a way by Henry.


3 thoughts on “Did Anne’s family push her into the marriage?”

  1. Lady says:

    I think that her uncle the Duke of Norfolk had a major part in that. He wanted to put away Wolsey and saw in Anne a great tool to doom the Cardinal. Years later he used Catherine Howard as a way to destroy Cromwell. You can see Norfolk’s hand in all this.

  2. LadyinWaiting says:

    I agree with you. I think Anne truely was in love with the King, and that Thomas Boleyn simply gave her a push in the right direction. Her family supported her because it would bring them up in the world, and possibly becausae they wanted the best for their youngest. Anne knew what being a mistress had done to Mary and like many girls would’ve done when seeing someone they love go through something like Mary did with Henry, the French King they make a vow to never let that happen to them.

    I also agree that Thomas Howard had a hand in the play as well, and when she lost her usefulness to him the Duke of Norfolk handed her to the wolves.

    Thats my humble opinion

  3. Anne says:

    Of course her family pushed her into it. Women of that time didn’t have a choice, you were a daughter, then a wife. And your family chose for you.

    You didn’t say no to your family and especially to the King. If the King wanted you, you were his. People forget that Anne wanted to marry Henry Percy and was denied.

    She didn’t have her eye on the crown.

    She was forced into it by Henry, who was petulant and spoiled, and further forced by her family as families of that era were perfectly content to make their daughters the king’s mistress in exchange for wealth and titles.

    People forget that Anne did not have choices that women today have. Think of how she must have felt. She watched her sister be used and discarded by the King.
    She wanted to marry elsewhere and the King put an end to it, along with Wolsey.
    She even tried to deny Henry, which was unheard of at the time. I believe she truly thought that he would get tired of chasing her and just pursue some other women of the court. I truly don’t believe she had any idea that Henry would discard Catherine.

    I think when the writing was on the wall, she knew her fate and had no choice but to go along with it. I think she made the best of it at first, and I do think she eventually fell in love with him. I think Anne was a complicated woman, with both good and bad qualities. But I truly believe she was a pawn of her family and of the Times.

    RIP Dearest Anne.

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