she was apprehended and taken to the Tower. One Mark Smeton, Groom of the Chamber, had been arrested and examined beforehand, and afterwards her brother George, Lord Rochford, and three other courtiers were likewise placed in the Tower. Anne was charged with acts of adultery with them all. She protested her innocence, though she acknowledged some familiarities. On the 15th she and her brother were condemned, and the latter suffered two days later with the four other supposed paramours. On the 17th a secret enquiry was conducted by persons learned in the canon law, after which Cranmer pronounced her marriage with the King invalid. On the 19th she was beheaded on Tower Green.
For some time before her arrest the King had been secretly talking of matrimony with Jane, daughter of Sir John Seymour, of Wolfhall, Wiltshire. On the very day of Anne's execution Cranmer gave the King a dispensation for this new match, and on the next day the couple were secretly betrothed. On Ascension Day, however (May 25), the King wore white as a widower in mourning; and it was not till Whitsunday, June 4, that Jane was openly produced as Queen, having been married the week before.
Parliament had been dissolved not long before Anne Boleyn's arrest. It was the same Parliament which had been summoned at Wolsey's fall, and it had lasted for six years and a half. A new Parliament was called, and met on June 8, to pass, among other things, a new Act of Succession in favour of Jane Seymour's issue, disinheriting that of both the two former Queens. The Princess Mary, though her chief enemy was now dead, was not restored to favour until, to make life bearable, she had signed without reading an abject submission, acknowledging the King's laws by which she herself was a bastard. Shortly afterwards died the Duke of Richmond, the King's natural son, who was believed to have been destined by Henry to succeed him on the throne in case of failure of issue by Jane Seymour; for he had procured a clause in the Succession Act enabling him in that contingency to dispose of the Crown by will. Another Act passed was for the attainder of Lord Thomas Howard, brother of the Duke of Norfolk, who had presumed to contract marriage with the King's niece, Lady Margaret Douglas. He died in the Tower next year. At this time also the office of Lord Privy Seal was taken from Anne Boleyn's father, the Earl of Wiltshire, and given to Cromwell.
In July there was a meeting of Convocation, over which Dr Petre presided as deputy to Cromwell, the King's Vicar-General. Since Cranmer had been raised to the Primacy several other Bishops favourable to the new principle of Royal Supremacy had been appointed, including Latimer of Worcester; and, as the King was hoping to strengthen his position by an alliance with the German Protestants, it was important to set forth by authority a formulary of the faith as acknowledged