Assess the claim made by the Venetian ambassador in 1519 that Wolsey ruled both the King and the entire Kingdom.
There is a lot of evidence in the form of primary sources supporting the fact that Wolsey was the person who conjured up many ideas that Henry himself had accredited himself for. The majority of this support is from accounts taken directly from the period of Henry and Wolsey making it first-hand evidence however there are factors that could potentially mean that these sources are of a biased view as the writer’s may have begrudged either the King or Wolsey. Recently, there are a lot more historians of the opinion that at the end of the day Henry was in charge over Wolsey as he is King and nothing can take this dominance and power away from him.
In my opinion, despite the fact that Wolsey did most of the groundwork and served Henry extremely well (and it is arguable that without Wolsey, England would be in a much worse state than it is with him as he was that important in the running of the country) Henry is ultimately in charge of the country and Wolsey for a number of reasons.
Firstly, the quote “Had I but served God as diligently as I have served the King, He would not have given me over in my grey hairs" the word ‘served’ is extremely important as it shows the balance of power between Henry and Wolsey. Everyone in England was a servant to the King as he is the most powerful man in the country, Wolsey was no different to any other person in this sense. This quotation also shows the dedication and work Wolsey put into serving the King as he compares the amount he served Henry to how he had served God. Wolsey was Cardinal, which is a massive role in the Catholic Church. Ultimately, his number one objective should be to serve God but clearly, as shown in this quote, Henry was second to none showing the importance of Henry to Wolsey.
Secondly, as well as Wolsey, Henry was also regarded as an intelligent and capable man. Surely, throughout the...