Split with Rome
The Split with Rome in 1534 occurred as a result of
King Henry VIII's desire to divorce and remarry. Henry
had been married to Catherine of Aragon since 1509
and she had borne Henry no male heir. Henry was anxious
to have a son, who would become King upon his death.
In order to secure the succession Henry wanted to
remarry and he had fallen in love with a young courtier
called Anne Boleyn.
remarry Henry would need to get the permission of
the pope who was the head of the catholic church.
The Pope though was warned by King Charles V of Spain
that he would be very unhappy if the divorce went
ahead. Spain were a very powerful Catholic country
and the Pope was reluctant to upset the Spanish King.
Likewise the Pope didn't want to upset Henry as he
too was a very powerful man who had, until now, been
a very useful ally of the churches. The pope put off
1533 Henry forced the issue. Anne Boleyn was pregnant
to Henry and the king knew that he must be married
for the child to be legitimate. He married Anne without
Rome saying that he could. The Pope, in 1534 said
that Henry's marriage to Anne was illegal. Henry's
reaction was to say that as King he had the right
to control the way that the church was run in England
and that the pope had no authority. In November 1534,
parliament passed an act that made King Henry the
head of the church in England. The English government
had now Split with Rome.