A portrait of Anne Boleyn comes to life in a gallery and talks to the night time security guard about her life. Anne Boleyn was the daughter of the Earl of Wiltshire. She was born in Kent but her father sent her to the French court to learn the ways of royalty. Anne was feisty and as a result of her time in France she became musical, a wonderful dancer and very popular. During the winter of 1521, Anne joined Henry’s court. Henry fell in love with her but he was a married man and the Roman Catholic Church would not give him a divorce. Henry wanted a new wife so that she could give him a son and heir to the throne. Anne Boleyn was lady-in-waiting to Catherine of Aragon. She knew it would take some time for Henry to secure a divorce, so she kept Henry interested with her love letters. Anne Boleyn waited six years for Henry to work out how to divorce Catherine. The Roman Catholic Church had refused to let him divorce, so Henry set up his own church which said he could be divorced. Finally he was free to marry Anne Boleyn.

This clip is from:
Primary History, Anne Boleyn
First broadcast:
28 September 2007

When learning about the Tudors, this clip helps tell history from the perspective of Anne Boleyn. Can be used as part of an activity based around writing a journal from the perspective of a Tudor character, be it Anne Boleyn, Henry VIII, or an ordinary onlooker or servant. This would help pupils to get into the mind-set of various Tudors, thinking about their values, ideas and the issues they faced. It would be great to support and stimulate cross-curricular learning such as characterisation in written English and in drama. Good links could be made between art and historical portraits and what they can tell us about history.