Henry Viii 's Influence On The Development Of Anglicanism Essay

2463 Words Nov 16th, 2014 10 Pages
Henry VIII was a critical figure in the development of Anglicanism. However, Anglicanism in England was, to an extent, in existence prior to his time. There were several contributing factors to the creation of Anglicanism as a religion, and despite his role, Henry VIII should not be regarded as the founder of Anglicanism. The term ‘Anglican’ derives from the Latin word, ‘anglicanus,’ which means ‘English;’ it was used to distinguish a faith from Roman Catholicism . The origins of Anglicanism as a faith are not entirely clear. The fifteenth and sixteenth century were periods of religious transition and development. There were several religious reformations taking place throughout Europe, such as the Protestant Reformation and Lollardism . The English reformation was partially influenced by the religious development throughout Europe. While the European reformations are not directly linked to Anglicanism, they serve as evidence of religious radicalism that Henry VIII could take as an opportunity to convert to Anglicanism. However, Henry VIII’s reformation was solely a political reformation, and much less a religious action, deriving from his need for an heir and consequent desire for a divorce from Catherine of Aragon. His divorce necessitated that the authority of the Papacy over the English Church be terminated, and resulted with that authority being transferred to the crown. As Henry VIII’s motivation in establishing this state religion was based on a narrow personal…

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