36. Henry VIII

September 8, 2011

In 1509, England's most (in)famous monarch comes to the throne - Henry VIII. Henry dominates the popular imagination even to this day and his reign dramatically altered the course of English history. It all started very pleasantly, with a good-looking and athletic king on the verge of his 18th birthday taking over to great acclaim, but his lack of a male heir led to his annulment of Catherine of Aragon, marriage to Anne Boleyn and the Reformation, where England broke from Rome and the Catholic Church. From 1536, his reign was a succession of dramas, including the Dissolution of the Monasteries and the Pilgrimage of Grace, numerous executions (including some of his six wives) and an ongoing rivalry with France and Spain. He is perhaps England's most famous king, but is he worthy of the Rex Factor?

As ever, lots of characters crop up in the episode, so check out our who's who to keep track of them all: https://rexfactor.wordpress.com/english-monarchs/whos-who/tudors/whos-who-henry-viii/