Why Famous: Queen of England from 1533 to 1536, Anne Boleyn was the second wife of King Henry VIII of England.
Anne Boleyn was a key figure in the political and religious upheaval that became the start of the English Reformation. Educated at the French court, Anne was an accomplished lady-in-waiting first in France and then at the English court to Catherine of Aragon, where by 1526 she had attracted the attention of Henry VIII.
Henry's deep attraction to Anne, along with a desire to produce a male heir led to his attempt to get his first marriage annulled by the Pope. Pope Clement VII refused, anxious not to anger the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V, a nephew of Catherine of Aragon.
However, by 1531 Catherine of Aragon had been banished from court, with Anne replacing her at Henry's side.
Henry VIII and Anne married first in secret in 1531 then officially at the end of 1532. By this time with Anne pregnant Henry set in place a number of acts to establish himself the new head of the English Church. In 1533 Anne gave birth to the future monarch Elizabeth I.
The royal couple's marriage did not remain happy for long. Anne's forthright lively manner was not that of a typical queen and she was unpopular. She also miscarried and bore a stillborn child. By 1536 Henry had courted and moved Jane of Seymour into Anne's royal quarters.
Trumped up charges of adultery and incest were levelled at Anne and her supporters and Anne was imprisoned in the Tower of London. Her marriage was then declared null and void. Anne was executed on the 19th May in the grounds of the Tower of London.
- 1532-11-14 King Henry VII of England secretly marries Anne Boleyn (officially married 25th January 1533)
- 1533-01-25 England's King Henry VIII marries Anne Boleyn, his 2nd wife
- 1533-05-28 The Archbishop of Canterbury voids the marriage of King Henry VIII of England & Anne Boleyn
- 1522-03-04 Anne Boleyn makes her debut at the English court at the Green Castle pageant
- 1533-06-01 Anne Boleyn crowned Queen of England
- 1536-04-21 Thomas Cromwell begins to plot Anne Boleyn's downfall while feigning illness
- 1536-05-02 Anne Boleyn is arrested and taken to the Tower of London
- 1536-05-15 Anne Boleyn and her brother George, Lord Rochford, accused of adultery and incest
- 1536-05-17 Anne Boleyn's 4 "lovers" executed
- 1536-05-19 Anne Boleyn, second wife of English King Henry VIII, is beheaded at the Tower of London on charges of adultery, incest and treason