28th June, 1491
28th January, 1547
Henry VIII, son and successor of his father, Henry VII of England was the second Tudor king of England and Templar affiliate. Upon his brother, Arthur's death in 1502, Henry was made heir apparent to the throne of England and in 1509, seven years later, was crowned defender of the faith and lord of Ireland.
Introduction to the Templars
During his divorce from Catherine of Aragon, Henry was inevitably swayed to ally with the Templars for support financially and physically, though he had previously been a member beforehand, having joined in late 1516. The Templar, Cardinal Wolsey, a close friend and advisor to the king convinced him to re-join forces with the 1st Duke of Suffolk, Charles Brandon, who promised to shorten the divorce proceedings and speed up the process of forming the Church of England.
After creating the Church of England, Henry and his Templar allies evicted monks and desecrated their monasteries, selling or destroying every last trace of Catholicism in Britain. It was during this period that the Assassins decided to intervene. The English branch of assassins deployed numerous apprentices to halt the reformation and save the innocent monks. Frustrated with this impediment, Henry called upon the Templars once more to rid the land of assassins. The purge was almost successful, if not for a handful of assassins who survived and escaped, spread across the kingdom. Following the Templar mass slaughter of assassins, Henry came to realise he could fully rely on their services, and soon became a knight of the order too, eventually rising through the ranks of the faction to some of the most senior and respected positions.
Field of the Cloth of Gold
In the summer of 1520, Henry met with assassin rival, King Francis of France, whom he fought in a wrestling match. He was defeated, and negotiations took a turbulent turn following this. It was decided that Mary I of England would wed the Frenchman's son, the Dauphin. The engagement fell through and during her early life, Henry promised his daughter to many other European princes and dignitaries.
Order of the Garter
A vital part of Henry's reign was marked by his reliance on his elite council of advisors, the knights of the garter. Several of his nearest and dearest were appointed members of the supreme committee over the years and the few who crossed him were often sent to the chopping block. As his relationship with the Templar order progressed, he invited many of the Garter Knights to join the Templars, and the two were almost merged completely by the end of the 1530's.
Grandmaster of the Templar Order
His ascension to the post of Grandmaster was a slow but steady one, taking over twenty-seven years of dedication and experience to complete. He was inaugurated as grandmaster in 1543, an old and crooked man just a few years from his death. He led the Templars no matter, and made several shake-ups to the traditional manners of Templar conduct. In his final days, he ordered that the Templars take a step back from his children, thus implying he didn't approve of the order's principles after all. He died on January 28th, 1547 on what would have been his father's ninetieth birthday. His son, Edward VI succeeded him, and as promised, the Templars did not meddle nor did they interfere with Edward's short reign.