Did Anne Boleyn Cheat on Her Husband? Judge for Yourself
The National Archives has digitized and created an online exhibition of parchments from the reign of Henry VIII. A collection of “top secret” documents, part of the “Bag of Secrets”, tells the story of the beginning of Anne Boleyn’s trial in 1536. Anne had been accused, with her brother George Boleyn, of high treason and incest. Among the allegations against the Boleyns was that they had French kissed each other, and that Anne enticed George to sleep with her by giving him presents and jewels. Historians do not think that the allegations were true because there is evidence that Anne was not at the locations at the times of the alleged incidents. It seems that Henry concocted the evidence against her.
It is not altogether clear why Henry decided to dump Anne. John Guy, Tudor historian, says “One of the main mysteries of Anne Boleyn is why Henry decided to get rid of her at that time. One obvious answer might be that his eye had alighted on Jane Seymour by then. “Anne first had a daughter (Elizabeth I) and then had miscarriages and it was said that there was a male foetus – this fits in psychologically with Henry, that Henry believed that his marriage was doomed. But why would he bring down the whole of Anne’s party and her brother as well? I think the answer is that Anne had crossed Henry by then.”
The collection of documents, seen on-line for the first time, also includes a court document relating to the divorce from Catherine of Aragon and a letter dealing with Henry’s desire to end his marriage with Anne of Cleves, because of their disappointing sex life. There is also a section of the the display about the Valor Ecclesiasticus, a special valuation of church lands before the dissolution of the monasteries.British Royals, Historical Royals
Tagged Anne Boleyn, Henry VIII.
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