The henry VII chapel is the largest chapel that is located at the far eastern end of Westminster abbey, paid for by the will of king henry VII.
In the 13th century, a movement was evolved in England where to show devotion to the Virgin Mary the kings started to build chapels in her honor across Europe. As a part of the trend henry, III’s last chapel was build at Westminster abbey. In the year, 1502 henry VII planned a new chapel. The old one was demolished in the year 1502 and started to build a new chapel from January 24 1503.
The new chapel was build with three motivations. the first was to build a shrine in the honor of henry VI who was expected to be canonized .but finally it was found that henry VI was not canonized and that and ultimately henry VII and his wife Elizabeth of york were interred in the tomb that was build for henry VI. The second point for which the henry VII chapel was come into existence is that henry VII wished to dedicate a more explained and elaborate chapel to the virgin to replace the older and simpler structure. The henry VII wants that people should know about the Virgin Mary in more details and show more respect to Virgin Mary. The motivation of the king was to spread more information about the virgin Mary among the common people of Europe. To make Christianity more popular in the world henry VII chapel give more emphasis to build more chapels and that is considered to be one of the main reason that the henry VII chapel was came into existence. The third reason of constructing the chapel was that the king wants to build a royal mausoleum for him, his family and his heirs at an important religious site that would spread the legitimacy as king and his legacy. The king wanted that people in the world should know each detail about the king, the ruling style of the king and his administrative system all should be scripted in the body of the chapel. The king wanted that people should also know about the royal family the positions of every member of the dynasty were to encrypted in the chapel and the name of all the members should be mentioned their. Each and every achievement of the royal family should be mentioned in the chapel so that the people of Europe can understand the importance of the king and the contribution of the king in the development of the society.
In the eighteenth century, it was found that this chapel was designed as sepulcher in which only the member of the royal family should be interred as per the will of the founder. According to the will of the founder, the chapel should contain all the name of the ancient kings and the list of the royal family should be stated in the chapel. The chapel becomes an important place were all the members of the royal family were buried but later on some other people were also buried in the chapel but there bodies later on disinterred from that place. The henry VII wanted that the chapel should be considered as one of the finest and largest monuments of Europe and it become a popular monument in Europe people from different places should come to see the henry VII chapel and learn more about the royal family. It become a monument from which researchers can gather knowledge about the life style of the ancient kings and at the same time it become a statue from which more elaborated information about the virgin Mary can be obtained from the chapel. The chapel was also constructed to give an idea about the history of ancient Europe and how henry VII used to control the dynasty and the pattern of his ruling.
The chapel was constructed in such a manner so that the researcher can get a idea about the type of sculpture at that time. The chapel was a symbol of wealth and prosperity of the royal family.
The main motive of constructing the henry VII chapel is to promote the achievement of the royal family and to make them popular among the people of the entire world. In addition to the promotion of the king and the royal family, the chapel comes into existence to highlight the importance of the virgin Mary in more elaborated and detailed way.
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