Henry VIII’s divorce from Catherine of Aragon is one of the iconic events of English history. At the start of the negotiations, no-one would have predicted it would end in a break with Rome. It took six years of cajoling, bribing, spying and lying before the Henry and his ministers made that final move. This is the story as told by those on the inside: the diplomats and agents trying their best to satisfy a determined king.
Catherine Fletcher is Professor of History at Manchester Metropolitan University and head of the Manchester Centre for Public History & Heritage.
She is the author of several books bringing sixteenth-century history to broad audiences including Our Man in Rome: Henry VIII and his Italian Ambassador (Bodley Head, 2012), The Black Prince of Florence: The Spectacular Life and Treacherous World of Alessandro de’ Medici (Bodley Head, 2016) and The Beauty and the Terror: An Alternative History of the Italian Renaissance (Bodley Head, 2020).