Dynasty, Territory & Religion in England

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13 Dec 2010
Early Modern Europe Thurs Nov. 18th
Dynasty, Territory & Religion in England
1) 15 crises - wars of roses
Need to understand the dynastic crises that came before the Tudor's. Serious splits
between different families claiming the throne.
100 years war - England had claims to French territory, and they thus went to war.
English holdings in France are reduced by about 1453. English allies with the
duchy of Burgundy.
Eventually return home, but now a great deal of civil wars.
Split between two houses, the house of Lancaster (red rose) and house of York (white
rose) both descend from a single king.
1485 the wars between the two cumulate in a battle, from which Henry of Lancaster
wins, marrying Elizabeth and forming a new dynasty - the Tudor dynasty.
This will be important in explaining how obsessed Henry the VIII will be in
solidifying his families place on the throne.
2) Tudor Dynasty
Henry VIII (1509-47)
was never supposed to come to the throne, has an older brother who dies
and put him in the place - however because he was no meant for the throne
he was educated much more than a crown prince would have been.
He was especially sharp in matters of theology, which is important
because it will play into latter issues of succession.
six wives in total.
After his brother dies there is a certain amount of pressure for him to
marry his brothers widow, Catherine of Aragon, and it is important because
she is a Spanish princess and it is importance politically to solidify the
She is fairly older than he is, and her children are not surviving - 5
stillborns, once surviving daughter who will eventually come to the throne
(Mary Tudor).
He is desperate to have a male heir, and thus needs a way to get rid of
this wife. While he daughter can inherit the throne, it is understand who will
really inherit the throne is whoever marries her. Things are still tense in
terms of the war of the roses.
However he cannot divorce, because in the Catholic faith one who is
divorced cannot be remarried, thus he needs an annulment. (Important to
remember here his theological training).
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