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OXFORD REVISE EDEXCEL GCSE HISTORY: HENRY VIII AND HIS MINISTERS, 1509–40 Glossary

The key vocabulary you need to learn for your EDEXCEL GCSE History: Henry VIII and His Ministers, 1509-40 paper. Find all the terms and definitions you need to understand, from ‘ACT IN RESTRAINT OF APPEALS (1533)’ to ‘UPRISING’.

A (ACT IN RESTRAINT OF APPEALS (1533) to ANNULMENT)

Act in Restraint of Appeals (1533)
The Act in Restraint of Appeals was an Act of Parliament of 1533 that stated that no foreign power – including the papacy – had a right to decide what happened in England; that right belonged only to the English monarch.

Act of Attainder
The Act of Attainder was an Act of Parliament that, under Henry VIII, condemned a prisoner to death without a trial. 

Act of Succession (1534)
The Act of Succession was an Act of Parliament of 1534 that was designed to ensure the English throne passed to Princess Elizabeth, or any future children Henry VIII had with Anne Boleyn, rather than Princess Mary.

Act of Supremacy (1534)
The Act of Supremacy was an Act of Parliament of 1534 that made Henry VIII the Supreme Head of the Church of England and removed the Pope’s authority in England.

Act of Union (1536)
The Act of Union was an Act of Parliament of 1536 that officially made Wales a part of England.

adjourn
Adjourn means put off or postpone an official process for a period of time..

 administrator
An administrator is a person who organises and supervises the running of an organisation.

adultery
Adultery is when a married person has sex with someone who is not their spouse (husband or wife).

Amicable Grant
The Amicable Grant was a deeply unpopular forced loan demanded by Wolsey in 1525; it was abandoned after a rebellion that humiliated Wolsey.

annulment
An annulment is a ruling that a marriage was never valid in the first place; if a marriage is annulled, it never took place.

B - C (BISHOP to COURT OF FIRST FRUITS AND TENTHS)

bishop
A bishop is a senior member of the clergy.

Catholic
A Catholic is a Christian who follows the leadership of the pope in Rome.

civil service
Civil service is the collective name for the professionals who work for the government and aren’t soldiers, judges, or politicians.

clergy
Clergy are people trained to carry out religious duties, such as priests and bishops.

commoner
A person who was not born into the nobility was known as a commoner. 

Council of the North
The Council of the North was an organisation, greatly strengthened by Cromwell, that helped the monarch control the north of England.

Court of Augmentations
The Court of Augmentations was a new department, set up by Cromwell, to deal with income from the dissolution of the monasteries.

Court of First Fruits and Tenths
The Court of First Fruits and Tenths was a new department, set up by Cromwell, to deal with taxes the clergy had paid to Rome before the break with Rome.

D - E (DIPLOMACY to EUCHARIST)

diplomacy
Diplomacy is communicating with other countries in order to achieve foreign policy aims.

dispensation
Dispensation means freeing someone from a rule that normally applies; for example, the Pope freed Henry VIII from the Church’s rule that forbade a man from marrying his brother’s wife so that Henry could marry Catherine of Aragon.

dissolution of the monastery
The dissolution of the monastery was the closing of religious houses after the break with Rome, during the reign of Henry VIII.

divine right of kings
The term divine right of kings refers to the belief that God appointed monarchs, so their power and authority came directly from God.

Eltham Ordinances
Eltham Ordinances is the name given to Wolsey’s proposals to reduce the running costs of the Royal household.

enclosure
When a small strip of land and common land farmed by a community under the open field system were joined together by a landowner to form a bigger field with fences around it, this was known as an enclosure.

Eucharist
The Eucharist is a ceremony commemorating the Last Supper of Jesus, involving bread and wine; it is also known as Mass or Holy Communion

F - H (FIFTEENTH AND TENTH TAX to HERESY)

fifteenth and tenth tax
Fifteenth and tenth was a tax that required people living in rural areas to pay a fifteenth of the value of their moveable goods (everything they owned except money, land, and property) every year, and people in towns to pay a tenth of the value of their moveable goods every year.

foreign policy
A country’s foreign policy is its strategy for dealing with other countries.

gentry
The gentry were the middle group of people in Tudor society, above peasants and below the nobility; they were wealthy and owned land.

Great Chain of Being
The Great Chain of Being was the hierarchy of life on Earth, upon which the structure of Tudor society was based.

heir
The person who will inherit the throne is known as an heir.

heresy
Holding religious beliefs that differed to the official religious beliefs of the time was known as heresy.

I - L (ILLEGITIMATE to LINE OF SUCCESSION)

illegitimate
A child is illegitimate if their parents are not married when they are born; in the sixteenth century, having children outside of marriage was frowned upon.

Justice of the Peace
A Justice of the Peace member was someone of the nobility and gentry who was responsible for law and order in their local area.

King’s Chamber
The King’s Chamber was the department that, before the break with Rome, kept a record of the government’s income and expenditure.

‘King’s Great Matter’
The phrase ‘King’s Great Matter’ referred to Henry VIII’s desire to secure an annulment of his marriage to Catherine of Aragon.

line of succession
The line of succession is the order in which people will inherit the throne.

M - O (MASS to OATH OF SUCCESSION)

Mass
Mass is the central act of worship for Catholics; another name for mass is the Eucharist.

monarch
The monarch is the king or queen who rules a country.

monastery
Monastery is a collective term used to describe different types of religious houses, including abbeys, priories, nunneries, and friaries.

nobility
The nobility were the highest group of people in Tudor society, above the gentry and below the monarch; they were very wealthy and owned a lot of land.

Oath of Succession
The Oath of Succession was part of the Act of Succession of 1534; it required everybody to take an oath recognising Anne Boleyn as Henry’s lawful wife and queen.

P (PAPACY to PROTESTANT)

papacy
The papacy is the office or authority of the Pope, who is Head of the Catholic Church.

parliament
Parliament is an assembly of representatives; it consists of the House of Lords (made up of the nobility and clergy in the sixteenth century) and the House of Commons (made up of wealthy and educated gentry and merchants in the sixteenth century).

pilgrimage
A pilgrimage is a journey to a religious or holy place.

Pilgrimage of Grace
The Pilgrimage of Grace was an uprising that began in the north of England in 1536; thousands revolted against Henry VIII’s rule, mainly because of the break from Rome. 

praemunire
Praemunire is working in the interests of the papacy and not the monarch; it was considered a serious crime, similar to treason.

Privy Chamber
The Privy Chamber was a group of Henry VIII’s most trusted advisors and closest friends who were allowed to enter his private rooms, so it had extra access to him.

Privy Council
The Privy Council was a group of around 20 of Henry VIII’s closest advisors; it replaced the Royal Council.

Protestant
The term Protestant originally referred to Christians who protested against the Catholic Church; there are now many different Protestant Churches, including the Church of England and the Quakers.

R (REBELLION to ROYAL SUPREMACY)

rebellion
Rebellion is violent resistance against the rulers or government of a country.

Reformation
The Reformation was the sixteenth-century religious movement that saw the Church in Western Europe divided into Catholicism and Protestantism.

relic
A relic is an object that is believed to have belonged to a holy person.

Renaissance
The term Renaissance describes the ‘rebirth’ or revival of European culture during the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, when artists and writers rediscovered ideas from ancient Greek and Roman civilisations.

Royal Council
The Royal Council was a large group of around 100 of Henry VIII’s advisors from the nobility and the clergy.

royal supremacy
Royal supremacy refers to the monarch being Supreme Head of the Church of England and the Pope having no authority in England.

S (SACRAMENT to SUBSIDY)

sacrament
A sacrament is an important Christian ceremony; Catholics believe in seven sacraments, whereas most Protestants recognise only two.

shrine
A shrine is a place that is believed to be holy because of its association with holy people, relics, and/or miracles; pilgrims often visit shrines.

Star Chamber
The Star Chamber was a court of law that dispensed justice on the monarch’s behalf.

subsidy
The subsidy was a new tax based on people’s income from land and wages; it was introduced by Wolsey and collected in 1513 and 1523.

T - U (TRANSUBSTANTIATION to UPRISING)

transubstantiation
Transubstantiation is the Catholic belief that the bread and wine consumed during the Eucharist become the physical body and blood of Jesus.

treason
Treason is the crime of betraying a country, especially by trying to kill its leader or overthrow its government.

Treason Act (1534)
The Treason Act was an Act of Parliament of 1534 that made it treason to call the king or queen a heretic.

uprising
An uprising is an act of resistance against those in power; it often involves violence.

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