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- "I am glad Anne has refused to do that. It would be dreadful for Queen Catherine. Mark laughed when I said this. "Anne has no sympathy for the Queen," he said. "She is refusing to be the King's mistress for just one reason. She wants to be his wife, and she will settle for nothing less.""
- —Elinor Valjean
Anne Boleyn (c. 1501 – May 19, 1536) was Henry VIII's second wife and the Queen of England. Before becoming Queen, Anne was a lady-in-waiting to Catherine of Aragon, Henry's first wife. Anne married the King in 1533 and gave birth to their daughter, Elizabeth, later that year.
Anne was possibly born as early as 1501, or as late as 1507. Her family consisted of her parents, Elizabeth Howard and Thomas Boleyn, and siblings, Mary and George Boleyn. Her mother was the daughter of the Earl of Surrey with royal connections, while her father was an "undistinguished" tradesman.
Anne served as a court lady to Margaret of Austria in 1513. She became a maid-of-honor to Mary Tudor and accompanied her to France the following year. Anne and her sister, Mary, returned to the English court in 1522. King Henry VIII took an interest in her, despite her already having a betrothed, Henry Percy. Cardinal Wolsey was ordered to send Percy away. Anne protested and was also sent away to her parent's home, Hever Castle.
1525 – 1536
By 1525, Anne had returned to court after staying at Hever Castle for nearly two years. At court, Anne worked as a lady-in-waiting to Catherine of Aragon, King Henry's wife. Henry had fallen in love with Anne, but she declined his offer to become his mistress, refusing anything less than to be his wife. Anne was sent away for a brief period, before being given her own house in 1528.
Henry proposed to Anne and sought permission from Pope Clement to annul his marriage to Catherine. After a decision was not reached for almost five years, Henry decided to separate the Church of England from the Catholic Church in Italy. Henry separated from Catherine and granted Anne the title of Marquess of Pembroke.
Anne began to show signs of pregnancy by early 1533, leading Anne and Henry to marry in a private ceremony. The following June, she was crowned Queen of England. She gave birth to her only child, Elizabeth on September 7, 1533. In 1536, Anne was falsely accused of committing adultery with Henry Norris, Francis Weston, William Brereton, Mark Smeaton, and George Boleyn. She was beheaded on May 19, 1536.
Personality and traits
Anne was depicted as a stubborn and headstrong woman, who was determined to become Henry's wife not his mistress. She often argued with Henry, which many at court thought was uncouth. Anne was also unable to hold her tongue, yelling at Henry whenever she found out about his latest infidelity. This was one of many factors that caused a rift in their marriage.
Behind the scenes
- Anne Boleyn is a major character in the My Story book, Anne Boleyn and Me.
- Besides My Tudor Queen, Anne is mentioned in every book in My Story and The Royal Diaries featuring the Tudor family.
- My Tudor Queen (Mentioned in the Historical Notes)
- Anne Boleyn and Me
- Henry VIII's Wives (Mentioned only)
- Elizabeth I: Red Rose of the House of Tudor (Mentioned only)
- The Royal Diaries: Elizabeth I - Red Rose of the House of Tudor (Mentioned only)
- Lady Jane Grey (Mentioned only)
- Bloody Tower (Mentioned only)
- Mary, Queen of Scots: Queen Without a Country (Mentioned only)
- The Queen's Spies (Mentioned only)
- Anne Boleyn at Biography
- Anne Boleyn at English History
- Anne Boleyn at Tudor History
- Anne Boleyn at BBC History
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