How far do these sources suggest that young Henry VIII was an impressive figure as a king? In the 16th century an impressive figure of a king would mean that he demonstrated power both physically and economically and a good education. However as source two suggests, Henry might be considered less than impressive as he shows insecurities. A stronger argument though is that Henry did demonstrate the features of an impressive king as he had all the attributes listed above which is clear from all three sources.
It might be inferred that Henry was less than impressive as he was clearly insecure. Source two shows Henry seeking to compare favourability with his rival king Francis I of France. He persistently asks the Venetian ambassador whether he is more physically impressive than Francis e.g. Henry asks ‘what sort of legs has he got?’ Such insecurity might encourage challenges as Henry could be seen as unconfident about his own authority. This argument could gain weight from the fact that the ambassador would be seeking to provide accurate information to the government of Venice. It could however be seen as the only one incident by a king who had only been on the throne for six years. Also it is not sustained in the other two sources.
The strongest argument suggests that Henry VIII was an impressive figure as king. From source two it might be inferred that Henry is very well educated as it shows Henry addressing the Venetian ambassador in French, ”His majesty addressing me in French”. During his time on the throne only rich, well educated people could speak more than their native language. His good education also shows that he has an attribute of an impressive figure of king. The strongest argument which suggests that Henry was an impressive king gains weight from the Venetian ambassador being a reliable source. Source two is a written article so it is more likely to be reliable than a painting. The Venetian ambassador is also likely to be speaking the truth...
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