A portrait of Anne Boleyn comes to life in a gallery and continues to tell her story to the night time security guard. Her marriage to Henry VIII was met with mixed reception. The Pope had banned Henry from the Roman Catholic Church but Anne Boleyn was right behind Henry’s new Church of England and was known as a reformist. Anne gave birth to a daughter who was called Elizabeth, later to be called Queen Elizabeth I. Henry still wanted a son, and despite the fact that there were many more pregnancies, none of the children survived. Henry was not happy and his problem solver, Thomas Cromwell, believed that Henry should get rid of Anne Boleyn, but warned that a second divorce would be unwise. Anne Boleyn had been faithful to King Henry but Cromwell was not going to let the truth get in the way of a good story. In May 1536, Anne was imprisoned in the Tower of London. Five men, including her brother, were accused of being her boyfriends and they were executed. After just three years of marriage, Anne Boleyn was tried and found guilty of adultery. She was given the choice of being burned or beheaded. She chose to be beheaded.

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 to explore the roles of men and women and Kings and Queens during the Tudor period. Pupils could work on creating a guide to being a good Tudor king, queen, man or woman based on the clip and other learning that has taken place previously. This could help pupils to explore some intricacies and noteworthy differences in Tudor times compared with today. 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.