Lust Greed Power or Religion? Why Did Henry Break with Rome in 1634?

Published: 2021-07-29 10:05:05
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Category: Greed, Christianity

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Henry broke with Rome for many different reasons, to begin with was that the Pope wouldn’t let him annul his marriage with Catherine. He only wanted this because he was in love with Anne Boleyn. Another reason was that he was greedy for money because he had lead an extravagant lifestyle and didn’t want to give that up. He was convinced that if he were head of the church he would get incomes from tithes and taxes. He also broke with Rome because he didn’t like the thought of anyone being above him, he wanted to be the one and only king.
To solve this he made himself head of the church so he would have power over the church. Lust was an important factor in the Act of Supremacy because Henry had was no longer in love with Catherine of Aragon and was now lusting after Anne Boleyn. Henry was only going after Anne because Catherine could not produce him a boy, as well as the fact that she was getting old and not so pretty. Anne refused to sleep with Henry until she was married to him; consequently Henry tried to annul his marriage with Catherine but the Pope refused.
The Pope wouldn’t let Henry annul his marriage since Emperor Charles V was Catherine’s nephew. Henry thought if he made himself supreme head of the church, he could allow himself to pronounce his marriage with Catherine of Aragon sinful in the eyes of God and his child with Anne Boleyn would be legitimate. For Anne had fallen pregnant with Henry’s child after being persuaded into a love affair with Henry VIII. Greed may have affected Henrys decision to overpower the church as Henry was slowly, but surely running out of money,.



If Henry controlled the church he would control the amount of taxes and tithes people had to pay, and if he controlled the church Henry could shut down all the monasteries (which he did in a period called `The Dissolution of the Monasteries 1535’) and take all the money and goods from them. Greed was very important because if he did it right he could control everyone in England. The act of first fruits and tenths was a form of tax on clergy taking up church living. To live like this they had to pay a portion of their first years income and a tenth of their profits annually from then on. Originally the money was paid to the apacy, but Henry VIII's Annates Act 1532 diverted the money to the Crown as part of his campaign to pressure the pope into granting him a divorce. Thomas Cromwell set up a special financial administration for these revenues and they later passed under the control of the Exchequer. During the 18th century, these payments formed the basis of Queen Anne's Bounty. Power affected Henrys decision to overrule the church because Henry already had the power to kill people if he felt they were threatening him, you can see this with his response to Luther and Tyndale, but if he controlled the church he could be like an idol to regular folk.
Henry obviously got angry when the Pope refused to annul his marriage with Catherine just because Emperor Charles V made him. Power was the main reason he was the kind of King who felt that he should have total power over his subjects but the power of the Catholic church in the 16th century outweighed that of even the most powerful King. Henry saw a way to end that power in England and use it for his own purposes he grabbed this opportunity and thus the reformation begins.
Religion most likely affected Henry’s decision to carry out the Act of Supremacy because he wanted England to be a good place with proper religion and a good understanding of the bible. Maybe Henry didn’t do everything for selfish reasons and he could have done it for the greater good. Henry didn’t want to change the Catholic Church at first but after falling in love with Anne he saw the light and saw how much better religion would have been if he changed the church. The Dissolution of the Monasteries was not only to get money it may have been for religious purposes as well.
Cromwell found that almost all the monks were breaking their vows and some of them had kids with nuns from the nearby convent. Uncovering all this showed that the Catholic Church was a disgrace and it was time for a new start. Henry saw this and began the Church of England or Protestantism. In conclusion I think that Lust was the most important factor for it seemed to trigger all the different emotions and seemed like it was most affective. I think that religion was the least important because I don’t think he even cared about it and he just cared about having a son.

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