The Reformation

The Protestant reformation in England during the sixteenth-century led to a break with the Roman Catholic Church, with Henry VIII declaring himself Supreme Head of the Church in England in 1534. For nuns and monks, the dissolution of the monasteries through the Suppression Acts of 1536 and 1539, effectively saw an end to English monastic life - religious orders were prohibited in the Church of England - until the laws controlling Roman Catholic practices were relaxed in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth-centuries.