Why Was Henry VIII so Important?
Henry VIII was important because of the role he played in the Reformation when he separated the Church of England from the Roman Catholic Church that refused his petition for divorce. The move to separate the English church from Rome resulted in the king’s excommunication from the church, but Henry still held to core Catholic beliefs and theology despite the separation. Henry was named the Supreme Head of the Church of England, giving him the final say in anything related to the church.
The developments with the Church and the change of power lead to numerous other historical events. The changes to the English Constitution and the Dissolution of the Monasteries were two other major changes during Henry’s reign. The changes to the Constitution gave Henry and future rulers the divine right of kings. The monasteries were dissolved because of their loyalty to Rome. Henry did his best to make it appear that he was using the law to shut down these establishments. Many times this was accomplished by tricking the monks into breaking their vows or stating the monks were not doing their duty to the community. The monasteries held large amounts of money and land, which Henry confiscated as they were shut down. The majority of the money taken from the monks was added to the Exchequer.