Though he was not the first son of Henry VII, Henry VIII became the heir to the throne when his elder brother Arthur died in 1507. Henry VII died in 1509, and the crown passed to his 17-year-old son, Henry VIII.
During his long reign, Henry VIII made many important changes in English society. He began to steer the Church of England on an independent course, throwing off the authority of the pope and confiscating land belonging to the monasteries. He also began to build up the navy, setting the stage for English naval dominance over the next few centuries. When he died, his son Edward VI succeeded him.Learn more about Renaissance & Reformation