Causes of the divorce

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  • Why did Henry want a divorce?
    • Legitimate heir
      • If Henry's marriage to Catherine wasn't legitimate then Mary was illegitimate
      • It was questionable whether a female could inherit the throne
      • A female on the throne raised possibilities of unrest as there were still descendants of Edward III alive
      • Catherine was over 40 and had last been pregnant in 1518
      • He made Henry Fitzroy the Duke of Richmond in 1525 and sent him to run the Council of the North
        • Possible successor?
    • Love for Anne Boleyn
      • In February 1529, Campeggio reported Henry was intensely in love with her
      • 5 and a half year campaign required sustaining
      • He was a reluctant writer but wrote her love letters
        • Demonstrated his infatuation
      • Anne refused to become Henry's mistress until she was sure she would become queen
      • She had grown up in France so was very different from English women
    • A matter of conscience
      • In order to marry Catherine, Henry had needed to obtain papal dispensation
        • Henry doubted the Pope had the ability to issue this, especially if the marriage was consumated
      • Henry was very religious
      • The Bible in the original Hebrew specifically mentioned having no sons
      • He saw the lack of a son from the marriage as God's punishment


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