Cromwell's downfall

Died 1540

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Reforming Credentials

Had great influence over spiritual affairs at this time

He drove the reformation forward, a good example of this being his task in the dissolution of the monasteries

He created lots of enemies

Cromwell was Protestant, possible conflict of ideas with Henry but probably not because he is not a terribly religious person

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Foreign Situation

France and empire were now persecuting protestants fiercely and both had agreed not to make an alliance with England

Henry felt isolated in Europe and vulnerable

Breaking down of Franco-spanish relations meant Cromwell’s marriage with Henry and Anne was useless

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Henry's Position

Henry was eager to make an outward show of doctrinal conservatism, which in some ways explains the execution of John Lambert in 1538 and the Act of 6 Articles

Cromwell was intent on forging diplomatic relations with German Protestant princes

Since Jane Seymour’s death Cromwell had been intent on a Protestant alliance to end isolation of Europe

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Anne of Cleves

Disaster of Cromwell’s

Had a large figure and Henry preferred slimmer women

Marriage for diplomatic and dynastic reasons

Cromwell therefore became out of favour almost immediately

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Enemies at Court

Gardiner, Howard, Bishop Tunstall, Lord Sandes and Sir Anthony Browne had been gathering information on Cromwell

Among the material was:

  • Cromwell had protected Protestants in Calais
  • He was unwilling to enforce Six Articles

Duke of Norfolk introduced his neice, Catherine Howard, to Henry

Cromwell’s final act was to provide the necessary evidence for the unconsummated Cleves marriage so it was annulled.

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Cromwell's end

Arrest in June 1540 execution in July

Norfolk-Gardiner faction had won

Cromwell’s downfall signalled the downfall of the evangelical cause

Cranmer survived to carry on the fight but a conservative backlash was on the cards

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