Humanism And Its Effect On Sir Thomas More's Position Regarding Henry Viii's Great Matter, Act Of Succession And Act Of Supremacy
This thesis presents an analysis of humanism as studied and practiced by Sir Thomas More, in the early-sixteenth century. It will examine the effect those beliefs had in his position regarding Henry VIII's Great Matter and the laws that followed. The thesis is divided into five sections including Introduction; Humanism; The Great Matter and the Acts that Followed; More, The Martyr; and Conclusion. The Introduction provides a terse summary of More's life, including his education and career as well as his personal life. In the section on Humanism, the philosophy is defined and the branches of same are discussed. It delves into Thomas More's practice of the philosophy and discusses three of his humanist works: his 1518 Letter to Oxford, Utopia and The History of Richard III. Erasmian Humanism is also discussed. In The Great Matter and the Acts that Followed, background on same is provided so More's position regarding these political decisions are understood. In this section, More's humanism is discussed as it relates to his own piety and understanding of virtue. In More, the Martyr, More's resignation to his impending execution is discussed in terms of his religious writing and how his humanism still was in effect at this time, though practiced now in a contemplative state. This thesis concludes with the breaking down of More's self-written epitaph and includes analysis on why same makes no direct mention of studia humanitatis. It also touches on how More's practices in humanism and Catholicism are viewed today, as are his stances on politics. It also includes opposition to his being considered a martyr.