Defender of the Faith

Defender of the Faith (fidei defensor), a title belonging to the sovereign of England, as Catholicus does to the king of Spain, and Christianissimus to the king of France. It was originally conferred by Leo X on Henry VIII for his work against Martin Luther; and the bull for it bears date quinto idus Octob. 1521. It was afterwards confirmed by Clement VII. On Henry's suppression of the monasteries, the pope of Rome deprived him of this title, and deposed him from his throne. The English Parliament (35 Henry VIII, ch. 3) confirmed the title, and it has ever since been used by English monarchs.

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