King Henry: Desire For A Male Heir (Personal Factor?
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1. King Henry: Desire for a male heir (Personal Factor)
King Henry had married his brother's widow, Catherine of Aragon, in 1509. Catherine had produced only one surviving child - a girl, Princess Mary, born in 1516. By the end of the 1520s, Catherine was in her forties and he was desperate for a son.
The Tudor dynasty had been established by conquest in 1485 and King Henry was only its second monarch. England had not so far had a ruling queen, and the dynasty was not secure enough to run the risk of handing the Crown on to a woman, risking disputed succession or domination of a foreign power through marriage.
In the meantime, King Henry had anyway fallen in love with Anne Boleyn, the sister of one of his many mistresses, and tried to persuade the Pope to grant him an annulment of his marriage on the grounds that it had never been legal.
Royal divorces had happened before: Louis IX had been granted a divorce in 1499, and in 1528 James IV's widow Margaret (Henry's sister) had also been granted one. However, a previous Pope had specifically granted Henry a license to marry his brother's widow in 1509.
Apart from the ideological reasons for the pope’s refusal, there…show more content… One of the clear biases involved was over short-term emotion. The decision to leave the Roman Catholic Church was majorly due to the Pope’s rejection of the request to divorce Catherine. Further, King Henry recognized the church’s diminishing state and took this time to because Supreme Head of the Catholic Church through an Act of Supremacy in 1534. This put the Pope out of work, but King Henry saw this act as an act of justice for the people. The Church became independent. Accordingly, there are signs of confirmation bias and overconfidence bias in King Henry’s decision process. Overall, this decision made King Henry very popular in England and favorable among his