•Charles River Editors’ original biography of King Henry VIII
•A biography of Henry VIII by David Hume, from The History of England
•Henry VIII and the Church of England by Israel Smith Clare
•Henry VIII’s Act of Supremacy
"We are, by the sufferance of God, King of England; and the Kings of England in times past never had any superior but God." – King Henry VIII
Over 450 years after his reign, Henry VIII is still the most famous and recognizable King of England, but it’s for all the wrong reasons. Though well regarded by contemporaries as a learned king and "one of the most charismatic rulers to sit on the English throne", he is best remembered today for his gluttony and multiple marriages, particularly the gruesome way in which he was widowed on more than one occasion. Naturally, that was the focus of the popular Show Time drama series centered around his life, The Tudors.
Henry VIII will probably continue to be best known for beheading some of his wives, most notably Anne Boleyn, so it is somewhat fitting that his most decisive act came as a result of a marital mishap. Sharply at odds with the Catholic Church over his attempt to dissolve his marriage with Catherine of Aragon, Henry VIII ultimately broke with the Church and established the Church of England, which forever both the religious history of England and the social hierarchy of the nation and its empire.
Though the popular perception of his reign has taken hold, King Henry VIII did not start life in any of those ways. In fact, he did not even start life as heir to the English throne. And when he did come to the throne at the age of 18, King Henry VIII’s earliest monarchical years showed his promise as a quintessential renaissance, polymath Prince. Even on the religious front, Henry VIII started out believing in the essential Catholic theology, even after the Pope and the Vatican excommunicated Henry from the Catholic Church (until then, the undisputed political as well as theological leader of Christendom, from which monarchs often needed various forms of legitimacy). For all these reasons, the manner in which his life and legacy diverge makes him an even more fascinating topic, one that clearly continues to captivate audiences around the world today.
The Ultimate King Henry VIII Collection chronicles Henry VIII’s life and reign with an original biography, as well as biographies by David Hume and Israel Clare. It also includes Henry’s historic Act of Supremacy, pictures, and a table of Contents.