The Evolution of Anglicanism Essay

The Evolution of Anglicanism Essay

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I. Introduction

The History of Anglicanism is a very fascinating part of English history, and often a misunderstood part as well. Many believe erroneously that Anglicanism came about purely as a result of King Henry VIII desiring a new wife, and creating a new religion was the only way to do so. The truth is a good deal more complicated. There is also the fascinating shift from Anglicanism being essentially Catholic, just with a different head of church, to be being one of Catholicism’s greatest opponents in European politics.
II. The Pride of King Henry
King Henry VIII was a prideful man, full of fire and vigor, and despite being a devoted catholic in his early life, soon began to chafe at the notion of anyone other than God having power over him, which began his troubles with the Pope. Many people took Henry VIII’s break with Rome as complete proof of his status as a heretic, and in their defense, Henry VIII most certainly was a heretic from the point of view of a Roman Catholic or a Romanist. Many laymen were of course unaware of Henry VIII’s pathological need for control and the fact that the King hated having any authority above his own in any and all matters, both spiritual and secular, and so of course they just assumed his break with Rome and the Pope to be a purely spiritual matter. There are numerous examples of people accusing Henry VIII of heresy such as a layman named Henry Kylbrae in a discussion with the proprietor of the White Horse Inn in Cambridge, which was a hotbed of religious discussion. Kylbrae is known to have remarked that the King and all who held the King as the head of the Church were strong heretics indeed. The common people were not alone in this assertion. Several noblemen and noblewomen s...

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... evolution and change in a relatively short period of time, perhaps owing this fact to the relatively rapid changes in leadership in its formative years. Regardless, Anglicanism remains a fascinating field of study.

Works Cited

"Trouble brews over gay issue: province of Central Africa 'could' split." Anglican Journal Oct. 2007: 8. Academic OneFile. Web. 7 Apr. 2014.

"Sexual orientation no barrier to church leadership." Anglican Journal Oct. 2009: 10. Academic OneFile. Web. 7 Apr. 2014.
Braddick, Michael. God’s Fury, England’s Fire: A History of the English Civil Wars. New York: Penguin Press, 2009
Lake,Peter Conflict in Early Stuart England. London: Longman Group,1989.
Shagan, Ethan. Popular Politics and the English Reformation Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2003

Walsham, Alexandra, The Fatall Vesper London: Oxford University Press, 1995.

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