Do you agree with the view that in the years 1515-1525 Henry VIII wholly surrendered power in government to Cardinal Wolsey?
To a certain extent within
Source 4 (by J.J. Scarisbrick 1968) supports the idea that possibly Henry VIII actually did surrender power over to Wolsey. The evidence within the source that suggests this possibly for being the truth is ‘a self-indulgent King had wholly surrendered the cares of the state into the Cardinals hands’. To further support this case, it is clear that Wolsey was extremely powerful, he had vast amounts of bishoprics (Archbishop of Canterbury, Tournai, Durham just to name a few) and was the head of things such as the Star Chamber where Wolsey got himself heavily involved with. This is shown when you compared the number of cases Wolsey took on (120) compared to that of Henry VII who dealt with only 12. Also Wolsey had control of all of the state finances and could make large changes to things such as the taxation system he was able to introduce a new form of tax known as the ‘Subsidy’ which was more popular since it meant the poor payed far less tax than previously than with the old 15’s and 10’s taxation method. This new taxation method allowed Wolsey to pay for king’s foreign affairs. As well as this ‘subsidy’, since Wolsey had such significant power he was able to also raise considerable amounts of capital through other means, such as through ‘benevolences’ and enforced loans from the nobility, which raised £200,000 in 1522. This shows that Wolsey was especially powerful as ‘benevolences’ was money disguised as a gift and was only ever done by monarchs, possibly suggesting that Wolsey could be classed as an Alter Rex. Despite the positivity and great power J.J. Scarisbrick gives to Wolsey within the source we also learn that George Cavendish influences this source significantly even right from the beginning ‘Cavendish...tells us’. Cavendish was Wolsey’s friend and servant, meaning he would be more than likely...
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