Portrait of a King: Likes

Whatever interested him, Great Harry applied himself 120 percent.

From the start, the king's preference for the "pleasures of the age" sparked comment. Dancing, tilting, fencing, riding and fighting were all in a day's work for this action man. Combined with his intensive patronage of the arts and learning, Henry was hailed as a wonder of the age.

The musical never knew what it missed. The king would frequently sing for his courtiers, accompanying himself on virginal or lute. One of his tunes, "Pastime with Good Company," became a popular hit. A highly agile dancer, the king could also "leap like a stag." Sometimes he appeared as Robin Hood, other times a Turk or Hungarian.

But at all times, he was Henry VIII.



Thirteen/WNET PBS