Off With Her Head
This week my boss tried to tell me that what no one realizes about Henry VIII is that he was a hopeless romantic.
"He didn't want to have a mistress," he told me proudly, having just read this in a bit of historical fiction. As if killing his wives because they didn't bear boys was just a footnote in dashing Hal's romantic history.
"He wanted to be in love!" So crowed my boss.
I did not point out that historical sources say Henry was shtupping Anne Boleyn's sister while married to first wife Katherine, and would have gladly bedded Anne on the side as well, had she not wisely (or unwisely, hindsight being what it is) refused him. I didn't point this out because I was busy edging toward the door.
And on that subject: "He was betrothed to Katherine when he was only 15, and by the time they were married, she was over 30 and very cold." "Uh huh," even though Henry got a papal dispensation to marry his brother's widow, technically his sister, which he conveniently remembered and repented when time came to ask popey for a divorce. "He put up with her until he met Anne Boleyn, of course..."
As if I would sympathize with a man who abused his power to manipulate those weaker than he. As if I would sympathize with Henry VIII, either.