Causa Anglica

Henry VIII’s tormented marriage case

At 11 o’clock on Tuesday, June 23, 2009, in the splendid setting of the Palazzo della Cancelleria’s Sala dei Cento Giorni, in Rome, the Vatican Secret Archives and Scrinium presented to the international gathering the fourth monumental enterprise undertaken in the context of the Exemplaria Praetiosa Project, namely the work titled “CAUSA ANGLICA - Henry VIII’s problematic matrimonial case.” It contains the first exclusive replica and critical edition of the historic Letter of the Peers of England to pope Clement VII, petitioning him to adjudicate the king’s case by granting him the annulment of his to Catherine of Aragon: the impressive parchment, dated 1530 and bearing numerous seals, that precipitated to the Anglican Schism.

At the press conference, the speakers described the results of the studies made of Henry VIII’s Petition by the Vatican Secret Archives’ experts and specialists. The Vatican Secret Archives chose to give this publication a special editorial form and to release it in a very small number of certified copies, thanks to the collaboration of the fiduciary company Scrinium.
The speakers included Msgr. Jean Luis Bruguès, Vice Prefect of the Vatican Secret Archives; Dr. Marco Maiorino and Dr. Luca Becchetti, Supervisors of the papal archives; Valerio Massimo Mandredi, writer and archeologist; and Ferdinando Santoro, president of Scrinium.

During the presentation, the attendees were able to admire the sumptuous and imposing document (which, including the pendant seals, measures about 2x1 m), complete with the 82 signatories’ seals displayed in a special glass case created by the Venini Glassworks of Murano.