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The Church of England

The Church of England

The protestant movement arrived in England after the Pope would not grant King Henry VIII the right to divorce his wife Catherine. Henry VIII wanted to produce a male heir. He feared that without an heir his nation would again be thrown into civil war. His marriage to Catherine had only produced daughters, and she was too old to bear any additional children.

Henry VIII

After being denied the right to divorce, King Henry VIII convinced Parliament to declare the Church in England separate from that of the Catholic Church and to place himself at the head of the Church.

After becoming the head of the newly formed church, King Henry VIII granted his divorce. He then married Anne Boleyn. After she failed to produce a male heir, King Henry VIII had her executed on charges of treason. He would marry four more times and would have only one son who would rule as King Edward VI.

Edward ruled only for a short time and died in 1553 A.D. Following his death, King Henry’s Catholic daughter came to the throne. Her name was Mary. Queen Mary attempted to use fear and death to bring the Catholic Church back into England. After putting many people to death, she became known as Bloody Mary.

Queen Mary was overthrown by her half-sister Elizabeth I. Queen Elizabeth was Protestant, and helped to strengthen the Church of England. She brought all the people together by making the Church of England more like the Catholic Church while still maintaining it as a separate church.