Anne Boleyn

As anyone interested in history will know, as it is all over history groups today, it is the 480th anniversary of the execution of Anne Boleyn.

She must be one of the most famous Queens of England, though she only held that position for three short years.

The question of whether she was guilty of the crimes for which she was executed is still asked among historians to this day.  Some of the dates used in her indictment can be proved as lies, as she can be placed elsewhere on those dates.  One of the dates used, she was still in confinement following the birth of her daughter, Elizabeth !!

Personally I think she was innocent, at least to a degree.  Most agree that she was a flirt, that was how she caught the King’s eye in the first place.  Many women use flirting as a way to get what they want, even today, I am sure things were not that different back then.  Perhaps she was guilty of flirting with her courtiers, though I doubt she would be guilty of sleeping with everyone that she was blamed for.

Mark Smeaton was, by all accounts, tortured until he admitted to an affair with the Queen.  Under torture, many men would amdit to anything to make it stop!  None of the other men who were blamed and killed admitted to any relationship with her, though they were nobles and unable to be tortured.

My feeling is simply that the King had tired of her and moved on with his love.  Why he wanted her dead and not just locked away somewhere in a nunnery or something is a little deeper question.

I think it stems from the way his relationship with Catherine, his first wife ended.  He sent her away and disowned her, thinking that would be the end of it, but she still held many followers at court until the day she died.  In my opinion, he did not want Anne to hang around and garner support as Catherine had done.  Catherine was older than Anne, she was coming to the end of her life when Henry dumped her, Anne was young enough to live for many years yet, Henry could not risk that.

He had to get rid of her fully, and if that meant her death, then that is what he wanted.  He did not have to do it so publicly.  Yet you have to think that it would maybe have been easier to simply poison her and be done with her.  Perhaps he wanted to prove something, maybe that he had the right to kill someone if they fell out of his favour?

As it goes, she is one of the best remembered people in history, mostly thanks to the way he got rid of her.  I am sure that is not what he intended.  He probably thought she would be killed and everyone would forget about her and move on, as he wanted to do.

So in death, she got one up on her murderous husband.  Go girl !!


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