King Henry IV, (1936). Creator: Unknown
King Henry IV, (1936). 'Kaiser Heinrich IV'. Henry IV of Germany outside the gates of Canossa, Italy, in 1077. "Barefoot, clad in a hair shirt, Henry appeared before the gates, begging for admission". Henry IV (1050-1106) was King of Germany from 1056 and Holy Roman Emperor from 1084. In 1077, he performed penance outside the gates of Canossa Castle in order to persuade Pope Gregory VII to reverse his excommunication. The incident occurred during the Investiture Controversy, a conflict between church and state that broke out in 1075 and led to Germany being embroiled in civil war for almost half a century. From "Bilder Deutscher Geschichte", (Pictures of German History), No.12, cigarette card album. [Cigaretten-Bilderdienst, Altona-Bahrenfeld, Hamburg, Germany, 1936]
© The Print Collector/Heritage Images
Penance of Henry before the shrine of Thomas a Becket. Artist: Unknown
King Henry II (1133-1189) doing penance before the shrine of Thomas a Becket. Henry ruled as King of England from 1154 to 1189. He was the first Plantagenet (or Angevin) King. St Thomas Becket (c1118-1170) was Archbishop of Canterbury from 1162 to 1170. He is venerated as a saint and martyr by both the Roman Catholic Church and the Anglican Church. He engaged in a conflict with King Henry II over the rights and privileges of the Church and was assassinated by followers of the king in Canterbury Cathedral. He is also commonly known as Thomas a Becket, although this form may not have been contemporary. From an ancient painting on glass, engraved in Carter's Specimens of Ancient Sculpture and Painting.
© The Print Collector / Heritage-Images