Editors. "Henry VIII tries to persuade the Pope to hasten his divorce proceedings". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 01 November 2010
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/stopics.php?rec=true&UID=14396, accessed 30 November 2015.]
Henry VIII sends his ministers Stephen Gardiner and Edward Fox to Rome, charged with persuading Pope Clement VII to hasten proceedings in the King's plea for a divorce. However, diplomatic considerations get in the way of this outcome, as the Pope, recently held prisoner by Imperial troops in his own castle, is currently very much under the dominating gaze of Charles V. In this situation, declaring the invalidity of the marriage of Catherine of Aragon, Charles's aunt, would be politically unwise, so the Pope does the opposite of what Henry VIII had hoped, and stalls for time.
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