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Cardinal Wolsey (Hardback)

For King and Country

British History P&S History Tudors & Stuarts 16th Century 15th Century Royal History

By Phil Roberts
Imprint: Pen & Sword History
Pages: 216
Illustrations: 20 mono
ISBN: 9781399089029
Published: 30th August 2022

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The Wolseys of Suffolk date to Anglo-Saxon times. The earliest notice of a Wolsey as inhabitant of Ipswich is Thomas Wolsey’s father, Robert. He was a successful small businessman and married a Joan Daundy. Thomas was probably born in 1471 in an inn, and was almost certainly baptised in St Mary at the Elms church, Ipswich.

Wolsey graduated from university and then his climb to power was extremely fast. He entered the royal household as the chaplain to King Henry VII. When Henry VIII ascended to the throne, Wolsey became his almoner, which gave him access to the king’s council. Henry was very impressed with Wolsey’s work, and Thomas gained many important clerical positions. In 1515, Wolsey became Lord Chancellor of England. Thomas Wolsey’s most famous peace treaty was signed between Henry VIII and Francis I of France at the glorious Field of Cloth of Gold in 1520.

Henry had not produced a male heir. A woman called Anne Boleyn came on the scene. Henry began to think that she could mother him a son. The king asked Wolsey to seek a divorce from his first wife. He tried his outmost, as always, but the Pope kept delaying the matter. Wolsey failed and fell out of favour with Henry. He was charged with treason and escorted to the Tower of London. On his way, Thomas became very frail and sadly, on 29 November 1530 he died at Leicester Abbey.

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About Phil Roberts

Philip Roberts is a Tudor historian and has worked for the Mary Rose Trust for twenty years. He is a lecturer and has appeared frequently on BBC Radio talking about the Tudor Age and the British Royal Family. He is the Sacristan at St. Mary at the Elms Church in Ipswich and has gained a first class degree. He lives in Suffolk.

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