The Reformation 1530-1538

The religious changes in England between the years of 1530-1538.

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  • The Reformation 1530-1538
    • 1530
      • MAY - William Tynedale's vernacular bible burnt
        • An attack on heresy against Catholicism.
      • DEC - Clergy as a whole accused of praemunire
        • This attacked the power of the Catholic Church to exercise through the ecclesiastical courts in England.
    • 1531
      • FEB - Clergy pardoned of praemunire charge
        • Henry was paid a fine of £119,000 in return for his pardon.
      • FEB - Convocation of Canterbury recognised Henry as Head of the Church 'so far as the law of Christ allows.'
        • This marked how far the Church was willing to go in allowing Henry more power. Henry had wanted to be known as 'protector and only supreme head of the English Church'.
    • 1532
      • First Act of Annates
        • This banned payment of annates to Rome. It also threatened that bishops could be consecrated by English authorities. Thus, the chief source of papal revenue in England was removed and one of the Pope's main functions as a leader of the Church was challenged..
      • MAR - Supplication of the Ordinaries
        • Clergy were to enact no Church law without royal permission
        • Existing Church law was to be examined by a royal commission
        • Henry complained that the clergy only gave him 50% loyalty, since they also owed allegiance to the Pope
      • MAY - Submission of the Clergy
        • The clergy accepted the King and not the Pope as their lawmaker. Thomas More resigned the following day.
    • 1533
      • FEB - Act in Restraint of Appeals to Rome
        • Based on the Collectanea Satis Copiosa, this began the work of transferring papal powers to the King:
          • The King was now supreme head of the Church in England
          • Rome had no power to rule over matrimonial cases. Cranmer declared Henry's marriage with Catherine null and void. Henry's marriage to Anne was declared valid.
    • 1534
      • JAN - Second Act of Annates
        • This confirmed the first Act of Annates
        • Abbots and bishops were in future to be appointed by the King, not the Pope
      • JAN - Act to Stop Peter's Pence
        • This abolished the payment of taxation to Rome.
      • MAR - Act for the Submission of ther Clergy
        • Appeals in ecclesiastical matters were now to be handled by the  King's Court of Chancery and not by the Archbishop's court.
      • MAR - First Act of Succession
        • This registered Henry's marriage to Catherine as invalid and replaced it with his marriage to Anne. The Crown was now to pass to Henry and Anne's children. The nation was to take an oath upholding their marriage. It was a treasonable offence to attack or deny the marriage.
      • APR - Execution of Elizabeth Barton ('Holy Maid of Kent')
        • This is evidence of Henry's lack of toleration of religious diversity.
      • NOV - Act of Supremacy (with oath of supremacy administered to all religious houses)
        • Henry 'justly and rightfully is... Supreme Head of the Church of England'. He is also given the right to carry out visitations of monasteries.
      • DEC - Treason Act
        • This listed key treasonable crimes, eg. calling the King or Queen a heretic.
        • Treason could now be defined as intent expressed in word as well as deed.
      • DEC - Act for First Fruits and Tenths
        • These clerical taxes were now to go to the King, not the Pope.
    • 1535
      • JAN - Cromwell made Vice-gerent in Spirituals
        • This is evidence of the swing to reformist influence over Henry.
      • JAN - Valor Ecclesiasticus
        • Cromwell commissioned this survey into the wealth and condition of the Church.
      • JAN - Execution of Carthusian monks, Bishop Fisher (JUN) and Sir Thomas More (JUL).
        • Opposition to break with Rome quashed
    • 1536
      • FEB - Act for Dissolution of Lesser Monasteries
        • The smaller monasteries (those worth under £200) were closed down.
      • MAY - Anne Boleyn beheaded; Henry married Jane Seymour the following day.
      • JUL - Act of Ten Articles
        • The 'Seven Sacraments' of Catholic doctrine were rejected, leaving a belief in only three (baptism, the Eucharist and penance). A clear move towards Protestantism.
      • AUG - Royal Injunctions to the clergy issued by Cromwell
        • These ordered the clergy to:
          • Defend the Royal Supremacy in sermons
          • Abandon pilgrimages
          • Give money for educational purposes to teach children the Lord's Prayer, the Ten Commandments and other scripture
    • 1537
      • JUL - The Institution of a Christian Man, also known as the Bishops' Book
        • The four 'lost' sacraments were rediscovered, though stated to be of lesser value. Other evidence of a drift towards Protestantism includes:
          • There was no discussion of transubstantiation
          • Mass was glossed over
          • The special status of priests was understated
          • Purgatory was present only by implication
      • AUG - Thomas Matthew published the 'Matthew Bible'
        • This was a distinctly Protestant version that had the King's permission.
    • 1538
      • JUL - Truce of Nice signed by Charles V and Francis I
        • This brought a temporary halt to the Habsburg-Valois War and created the real possibility of a joint invasion of England by Catholic powers. This threat lasted until 1540, and prompted Henry to move back to Catholicism in the Act of Six Articles.
      • SEP - Royal Injunctions to the clergy issued by Cromwell
        • The English Bible was to be placed in all parishes within two years
        • All births, marriages and deaths were to be registered in every parish.
        • People were to be actively discouraged from pilgrimages (eg. Thomas Beckett's shrine at Canterbury Cathedral was destroyed)
        • Relics were to be removed from Churches (confirming a rejection of purgatory)
      • NOV - Trial and execution of John Lambert for his rejection of transubstantiation
        • This was a clear symbol of Henry's commitment to the Catholic belief in Christ's real presence in the Eucharist.
      • DEC - Henry excommunicated by Paul III




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