Acts of the "Reformation Parliament" 1529-34

Summary Revision Cards on each of the Act of the "Reformation Parlaiment" 1529-34.

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Charge of Praemunire against the clergy (1530-31)

A charge on 15 clergymen who recognised Wolsey as Papal Legate

(essentially the Pope)

Therefore acknowledged Wolsey as above the Crown.

A pardon and withdrawal issued by a convocation after
£100,000 compensation was issued on Henry's demand.

It was Henry's first shot in challenging papal authority;

 - Asserting Royal rights over the Eglish clergy

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Submission of the Clergy (1532)

Group of MPs (possibly prompted by Cromwell) petitioned to Henry the Submission of the Clergy - essentially an attack on the abuses of the clergy

  • Abuses included:
    • Immunity from prosecution in common law
    • Cannon law often less severe
    • Cannon law corrupt with favourable judgments
    • Often canon law was used to extract exaggerated fines from the laity
    • Cannon law abused to maintain power and status (Richard Hunne case 1511-1514)
  • Therefore Henry presented convocation with a series of demands including:
    • Clergy must surrender the right to pass new canon law
    • Changes to canon law must be approved by a committee of 16 clergymen and 16 laity (committee chosen and headed by the king).

The clergy had lost their century-old authority and independence

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Act in Restraint of Annates (1532)



Senior clergy were required to pay 1/3 of their income to Rome in their first year of office.

This Act banned all but 5% of the 1/3 from going to Rome

However, clearly a bargaining tool in the King's divorce as the Act was not to be passed as law without Henry's signature.

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Act in Restraint of Appeals (1533)

kjhgGave formal separation from Rome as well as legally

allowed Henry to marry Anne Boleyn.

  • This act ended the Papacy's right to act as a final court of appeal for English court cases.
  • It became illegal and treasonous to appeal to any authority outside of England.


Power of appeal was transferred to the Archbishop of Canterbury...

...2 months later Cranmer used this to declare the orginal dispensation for Henry's marriage to Catherine of Aragon invalid.

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Act of Succession (1534)



Officially declared Henry and Catherine of Aragon's marriage invalid,

Therefore making Mary illegitimate,

securing the succession to Henry and Anne's children.

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Act of First Fruit & Tenths (1534)


This law increased Royal revenue by 40%

All senior clergy paid

'First Fruits' - 1/3 of the income in their first year of office.


As well as:

 'Tenths' - 10% of parish income (tithes, heresy charges, church service charges etc)

This Act redirected all these payments to the Crown of England.

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The Dispensations Act (1534)

Stopped the clergy from ignoring or departing from canon law.


Pluracy - holding more than one bishopric 

Non-residence - Foreigners buying bishoprics in England and not living in the country or area.

Also to be no more...

Appeals to the Papacy for legal cases (Act in Restraint of Appeals)

Peter's Pence - one penny annual tax to Rome


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Act of Supremacy & Oath of Supremacy (1534)


Wasn't fully recognised as law until 1535,

Acknowledged Henry as:

'justly and rightly' the Supreme Head of the Church of England.

All clergy had to sign their formal obedience to Henry and not the Pope.

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Act of Treason (1534)


Essentially - what you said could land you in as much trouble as what you did.

Made simply voicing criticisms of the King/ Queen a treasonable offence, 

- worthy of the death penalty.

(invoked to arrest and execute John Fisher and Thomas More in 1535)

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