Henry VIII: Power, Propaganda and Personality

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Henry VIII: Power, Propaganda and Personality

June 29 @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm


Henry VIII: Power, Propaganda and Personality

by Dr John Cooper FSA

Henry VIII (pale green background) (1491-1547)

Who was King Henry VIII, and why does he continue to fascinate and to provoke us today?  This lecture marks the five hundredth anniversary since Henry VIII was awarded the title ‘Defender of the Faith’ by the Pope in 1521.  An accompanying online exhibition, drawn from the collections of the Society of Antiquaries, offers a unique perspective on England’s most popular – and controversial – king.

Henry VIII is often depicted as a thoroughly Renaissance ruler, a patron of the latest developments in art and architecture and a determined opponent of traditional religion.  In other respects, however, Henry VIII was deeply connected to the past.  Drawing on objects presented in the exhibition, including portraits, manuscripts and print, this lecture explores some of the paradoxes inherent in a king who reviled Martin Luther and paid for masses to be celebrated for his soul, while also dissolving the monasteries and opening the floodgates to Protestant reform.  Examining the power, the personality and the propaganda of Henry VIII, this lecture also offers some reasons for his enduring fame in our own day.



You can read more about our Henry VIII portrait here.

Please note that due to COVID 19 restrictions this event will be online only. 

Attendance by Live Stream:

  • Registration is essential.
  • Open to anyone to join, Fellows and Non-Fellows.
  • Once you have registered we will be in touch regarding how you can join via Zoom video-calling.
  • The event will also be live-streamed to YouTube here, so you can watch along if you prefer
  • Places through zoom will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • The event will begin at 13.00, BST.
  • You will receive an email with the link to join the day before the lecture.
  • Attendees’ cameras and microphones will be off throughout.

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If you have any questions please contact our Communications Manager on [email protected]

Get tickets online


June 29
1:00 pm - 2:00 pm
Event Category:


United Kingdom