Cardinal Wolsey: A Life in Renaissance Europe

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Bloomsbury Academic, Jun 6, 2009 - History - 240 pages
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The accession of Henry VIII provided the catalyst for cardinal Wolsey's dramatic rise to power. a month after his receipt of the coveted cardinal's hat in 1515, Wolsey became lord chancellor, making him the king's principal minister and England's senior judge, despite having no formal education in the law. Wolsey's pan-European vision ensured that he was well aware of the threat posed by Martin Luther's theological revolution and campaign against clerical abuses. He therefore sought to nip English heresy in the bud by taking decisive action against known religious radicals and by founding Cardinal College (now Christ Church), Oxford, with a view to forming well-educated priests who would combat heresy and institute ecclesiastical reform from within the hierarchy. Among England's senior churchmen, only Wolsey might have executed such a strategy, but circumstances were combining to thwart his plans. Wolsey was frustrated and ultimately disgraced by the essentially domestic problem of the king's determination that Anne Boleyn should be his wife and the mother of his legitimate heir. This book is an engaging and dramatic biography of this colossus of the Tudor age.

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Grand Chancellor 151520
Papal Pretensions 15203
Heretics and Rebels 15247

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About the author (2009)

Dr Stella Fletcher has taught for the Continuing Education departments of the universities of Bath, Birmingham, Liverpool and Manchester. She is currently Associate Fellow of the University of Warwick's Centre for the Study of the Renaissance. Her publications include the Longman Companion to Renaissance Europe and a history of the archbishops of Canterbury, The Mitre and the Crown (with Dominic Aidan Bellenger).

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