In my opinion, Henry wanted Anne Boleyn out of the way for good. Catherine of Aragon had been offered the chance to go into a nunnery but had refused and had caused Henry problems for many years as she fought for her marriage and the rights of her daughter, Henry probably thought that Anne, being a strong character too, would cause him just the same type of problems if he allowed her to live. She had to go, permanently.


1 thought on “I just love your website & am so grateful to you for creating & maintaining it! My question is…given the fact that Henry annulled his marriage to Anne anyway, why didn’t he just banish her to a nunnery instead of the horrible way in which she was treated?”

  1. Joanne says:

    Hello, I agree that Henry wanted a quick and permanent solution to the removal of Anne….divorce would take far too long, and then she would still be around somewhere at the end of it. I also think that emotion played a large part too – he was angry, and jealous, and desperate – and all-powerful…none of which boded well for Anne.
    Even though I don’t think that Henry truly believed all the stories about Anne and the other men, I think that she pushed him too far ( either being too quick-witted, having an answer for everything, failing to be the subservient, quiet wife he wanted) and he couldn’t retract his decision without looking foolish. Having the marriage annulled, and then executing her anyway was sheer spite, or jealousy run mad – if she was never truly his wife, then she can’t have committed treason, then there was no valid reason to execute her. It also smacks of viciousness – if I can’t have her, then neither can anyone else.

    Love your site – Anne is a fascinating subject, one which will keep the debate raging for many years more yet…just like the Richard 111 / Princes in the Tower murder, and the Shakespeare / Earl of Oxford conundrum.

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