By in Parenting

Off with HIS Head - King Henry VIII

Why especially was the murder by King Henry VIII Ann Boleyn, his second wife, not only a heinous crime, but guilt misplaced?

Henry wanted -- no, expected, even demanded - a male heir to succeed him on the throne. A female child was unacceptable. Now a male child results when an X chromosome combines with a Y chromosome, whereas a female results when two X chromosomes unite, one from the father, one from the mother. Thus,

X+Y → X-Y, a male.
X+X → X-X, a female.

Females cannot provide a Y chromosome. It is impossible.
A male can provide either an X chromosome OR a Y chromosome.

Thus, what gender a child will prove to be is completely, 100%, determined by the father. His not having a male heir was the fault, not of Ann Boleyn, but of the King, himself!

Source Material: The Y Chromosome: In Danger?

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MegL wrote on April 16, 2022, 6:11 PM

In those days (and even some these days) people always thought gender could be determined by the woman and even that infertility was always the woman's "fault". It's useful to have someone to blame, so you don't have to take the responsibility for problems. Of course, even now, not all these problems and wants can be fixed, even though modern science would like us to think they know and can "fix" everything. Even the King could not overcome everything. It's said that Henry VIII died of a "surfeit of lampreys", ie he stuffed himself with too much fish!