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Henry VIII's key reason for the reformation.

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  • Essay length: 4250 words
  • Submitted: 01/01/2004
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AS and A Level British History: Monarchy & Politics

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Henry VIII's key reason for the reformation

The break from Rome was the ending of Papal rule in England. Up until 1534 the Head of the Church in Catholic Europe (including England) was the Pope in Rome. However for several reasons which I shall discuss in this study, Henry VIII of England in 1534 decided to replace the Pope as Head of the Church in England and appointed himself as the Supreme Head of the Church of England and consequently ruling England as a Catholic country without the Pope. The points needed to be looked at in this study are the state of the pre-reformation church, power and money, and the divorce from Catherine of Aragon.

State of the pre-reformation church

It has been argued that the pre-reformation church was a corrupt and failing institution and therefore Henry had to totally overthrow the running of the church and appoint himself as the Supreme Head in order to reform church practice. Traditionally many historians have argued that the people of the early 16th century agreed with Henry in his decision because the church in England was a deeply unpopular institution. Anti-clericalism according to this line of argument

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