King Henry VIII was both a literal and a historical giant but his reputation of brutality and malevolence has few equals. He took power at the start of the English renaissance and was responsible for the English reformation. He had inroads into public health and regulated medical practitioners but also oversaw the enactment of vicious traitorous laws where could be jailed or executed for actions (including speaking out) against the crown.
Henry’s was touted as being a tall and striking young man who was gifted in athletic sports. However, his health deteriorated during his mid-30s apparently as a result of a significant accident in a jousting event. At the age of 55, he died. Legend had it that after his death, he was so large that his coffin exploded. Is this true?