Anne Boleyn is perhaps the most engaging of Henry VIII’s Queens. For her he would divorce his wife of some 20 years standing, he would take on the might of the Roman Church and the Holy Roman Empire; he would even alienate his own people in order to win her favour and, eventually, her hand.
Mary Boleyn, ‘the infamous other Boleyn girl’, began her court career as the mistress of the king of France. François I of France would later call her ‘The Great Prostitute’ and the slur stuck. Mary would emerge the sole survivor of a family torn apart by lust and ambition, and it is in Mary and her progeny that the Boleyn legacy rests.