On this day in Tudor history, 1532 Henry and Anne set sail from Dover bound for Calais. It was to be the first time Anne was presented on the international stage as Henry’s intended bride, despite the fact that he was still married to Catherine of Aragon. In preparation for Anne acting as his consort on this trip, abroad Henry had raised her to the rank of Marquis and presented her with a large collection jewels and new dresses to wear while in France.
The purpose of this trip was multi-faceted; to renew the friendship between England and France as well as to serve as a public showing of King Francis’ approval of Henry’s intended plans for marriage to Anne. Anne and Henry hoped that Francis would agree to meet with the Pope on their behalf to encourage a quick annulment of Henry’s first marriage for the sake of the Church and peace in Europe. Francis assured Henry of his support and in turn Henry, confident that a resolution of his Great Matter was coming soon, began a sexual relationship with Anne. Anne conceived before Francis had a chance to appeal to the Pope resulting in the hasty crowning of Anne as queen of England.