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New: Article on the Medieval minsters of Beverley, Rippon and York, submitted by Stuart Sharp.

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An Examination of the significance for the Reformation in England of Anne Boleyn

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Pauline Croft adopts a similar stress on accidents to that of Haigh, but is less willing to see Anne as a mere cipher for powerful relatives. She stressed the importance of court politics without diminishing Anne's importance. "The course of religious change during the Reformation and Counter-Reformation was often crucially shaped by the accidents of court politics. In her years as the leading lady at court, Anne Boleyn played a vital role as the patron and protector of evangelical reformers"

Paul Zahl also argued that Anne Boleyn, Katharine Parr, Jane Grey, Anne Askew, and Catherine Willoughby) were all powerful theologians, who paid the cost of their convictions with imprisonment, exile or death. Anne Pointer similarly saw Anne as deep-thinking and influential theologian. The evidence seems rather scant for her theological expertise but Anne was certainly very interested in the religious debates of her time and may have been responsible for introducing the new ideas to Henry and bringing him to see them in a more positive light than Wolsey had done. (

She was certainly a consummate politician. Her ascent to the throne and her speech on the gallows are evidence of this. ("...I pray God save the king and send him long to reign over you, for a gentler nor a more merciful prince was there never: and to me he was ever a good, a gentle and sovereign lord...") She failed to bear a male heir for Henry but she gave birth to another remarkable queen who ensured Protestant succession and continued the project that her mother had largely set in motion.


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