Visit Your Local PBS Station PBS Home PBS Home Programs A-Z TV Schedules Watch Video Donate Shop PBS Search PBS
The Six Wives of Henry VIII
Catherine of Aragon Anne Boleyn Jane Seymour Anne of Cleves Catherine Howard Catherine Parr
Meet the Wives Find a Wife Portrait of a King Tudor Times
Home
About the Series
Classroom
Resources
Feedback
Support PBS


Tudor Times
Power Pageantry God & King Sports Fashion School Days Food & Feasts London, C. 1558

God
Solve the Riddle!
Edward VI and the Pope
Unknown, c. 1570
Credit: National Portrait Gallery

In 1516, Martin Luther nailed 95 theses condemning papal indulgences to the door of a church in Germany. His views would spread across Europe, but in England they met with fierce resistance. In 1521, Henry VIII, with the help of his chancellor Sir Thomas More, wrote an attack on Luther's character and views. As a reward for attacking Lutheran ideas, Pope Leo X granted Henry the title "Defender of the Faith." But when the pope prevented Henry from obtaining a divorce from Catherine of Aragon, Henry broke England's ties with the Catholic Church and named himself "Supreme Head of the Church of England." Nonetheless, the king still did not tolerate reformist views. Staunch Catholics and hard-line reformers alike were persecuted during the rest of his reign. At Henry's death in 1547, the kingdom was still divided over religion. This painting portrays the religious issues of the time as well as the effects of Henry's actions on his heir, Edward VI.
Riddle:
Who succeeded Edward VI?
What's your answer?
Elizabeth I
Mary I
Lady Jane Grey