Tracy Borman paints the portrait of England’s most famous king and the enablers, the fools, the teachers and the men at arms who knew him best and shaped his outlook on the world.
Henry VIII was taught by some of the most famous scholars of his time and developed a reflective and intelligent manner we seldom hear about. Raised to be great prince, he enjoyed being the centre of attention, but as the second born had few of the pressures of his older brother.
He could enjoy court life and by all accounts he thrived in the companionship of men, revelled in jousts and loved hunting. Even after the death of his elder brother, after he became the Crown Prince, he maintained a careless joie de vivre.
He could also be naïve and was often too trusting of those around him, often to his detriment. And despite his lascivious reputation…he could be prude.
Finally, in his elder years he became the paranoid tyrant we have come to know.