In 1521 Henry VIII received the title Defender of the Faith - Fidei Defensor - from Pope Leo X. This was a new title that would belong to the English monarch the same way that the French had a title called Most Christian.
It was a reward for Henry’s pamphlet, Assertio septem sacramentorum adversus Martinum Lutherum (“Declaration of the Seven Sacraments Against Martin Luther”), written against Luther. When Henry broke away from the papacy, Pope Paul III deprived him of his designation, but the title was restored to the king by Parliament in 1544 and is still used by his successors on the English throne. The abbreviation Fid. Def. or the letters F.D. have been regularly on the coinage from the time of George I.
That’s your Tudor Minute for today. Remember you can dive deeper into life in 16th century England through the Renaissance English History Podcast at englandcast.com.
Episode Link: October 2017 Reformation Month Episodes https://www.englandcast.com/2017/10/october-reformation-month/