Sunday, May 16, 2010

Anne's Faith

What exactly did Anne Boleyn believe? Gareth Russell tackles the question.
During Cromwell’s visit the previous day, he and Kingston had doubtless discussed the Queen’s request that the Sacrament be brought to her Oratory; she had made that request on the day of her arrest, but it had still not been fulfilled and, today being Sunday, this had once again focussed Her Majesty’s attention on the fact that the Sacrament was missing from her rooms. She had also been without spiritual comfort in the form of a priest since the last time she had heard Mass - in her rooms at Greenwich, five days earlier, on the morning of the arrest.

The problem with a priest being allowed to visit her was that Anne was quite specific that she wanted her own confessor, Father John Skip, who at Easter had launched a blistering sermon at Court, in which he likened Cromwell to the biblical villain, the genocidal and duplicitous Haman. Kingston was thus understandably nervous about asking Cromwell to dispatch the fire-breathing padre; when he did finally pass the request along, he diplomatically referred to Father Skip as a man “who she supposeth to be devout”. At least that way, Kingston himself could avoid giving any of his own opinions on the troublesome cleric.

However, whilst a tad awkward, the request for her confessor was not necessarily problematic; Cromwell simply ignored it. It was the Queen’s repeated insistence that the Sacrament be brought to her rooms which posed a plethora of problems for the government. (Read More.)
The Trial of Anne Boleyn, HERE. Share

3 comments:

Matterhorn said...

I used to think of her simply as a villainess, but now I think there was more to her than that. Not that she was a saint by any stretch of the imagination, but she was a complex and nuanced woman with alot of "sides" to her and she merits careful study and consideration.

Gareth Russell said...

Thank you so much for the link - it's a fascinating subject. (And Matterhorn's words were, of course, a soothing balm to my writing soul!) I'm planning to do a profile of "Trianon" when the whole Anne Boleyn saga is behind me, if that's alright? You know I mentioned it in my 2007 thesis for graduating from Oxford? (All good, of course!)

elena maria vidal said...

As usual, Matterhorn has succinctly and beautifully summed up the matter.

My "Trianon"? I would be honored! You mentioned it in your thesis at Oxford?? Really? I am at a loss for words...thank you!! I wish I could get you a copy of the newly revised edition.