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Henry VIII

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Henry VIII belonged to the House of Tudor. Born in 1491, he ascended to the throne in 1509 and died in 1547. He was preceded as monarch by Henry VII and was succeeded by Edward VI.

Henry was born at Greenwich, the second son of Henry VII. His older brother Arthur having died, he became king in 1509 and married Catherine of Aragon, Arthur's widow. In 1514, at Wolsey's suggestion, he made peace with France, and his sister married Louis XII. Wolsey and the pope were regarded by the king as responsible for his failure to obtain a divorce from Catherine, so Wolsey was exiled to his diocese of York. In 1529, the famous Reformation Parliament met. At this time, Thomas Cranmer became Henry's principal minister and in 1533 declared Henry's marriage to Catherine invalid. The king at once married Anne Boleyn. In 1535, Henry was made head of the Church of England.

Henry had Anne Boleyn executed in 1536, and ultimately had six wives.

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