Execution by Henry VIII
George's sister, Anne Boleyn (c1501-1536) and George, were executed on charges of treason, adultery and incest by Anne's husband, Henry VIII of England (1491-1547). Anne's two chief biographers, Eric Ives and Retha Warnicke, both concluded that these charges were fabricated. They also agree that the King wanted to marry Jane Seymour. Beyond this obvious fact, the sequence of events is unclear and historians are divided about whether the key motivation for Anne's downfall was her husband's hatred of her or her political ambitions. Despite the claims of several recent novels, academic historians agree that Anne was innocent and faithful to her husband. Nonetheless, the judges obeyed the King, condemning Anne, George Boleyn and four others to death. Their father, Thomas Boleyn and uncle Thomas Howard, 3rd Duke of Norfolk provided no help to the condemned. The accused men were beheaded by the axe on 17 May 1536 and Anne was executed by a French swordsman two days later.