Portrait of Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey (1517-1547), an English nobleman and one of the founders of English Renaissance poetry. He was a first cousin of both Queen Anne Boleyn and Queen Catherine Howard, second and fifth wives of King Henry VIII. The Howards had many enemies at court. such as Thomas Cromwell and the Seymours. Henry VIII, consumed by paranoia became convinced that Howard planned to usurp the crown from his son - the future King Edward VI. In consequence, the King ordered Surrey's imprisonment and that of his father, sentencing them to death on 13 January 1547. Howard was beheaded on 19 January 1547 but his father survived execution as the king died the day before that appointed for the beheading.