Magnet pictures British actor, producer and theater manager, Henry Irving (1835-1905), in his role as Cardinal Wolsey in Shakespeare's The Famous History of the Life of King Henry the Eighth (known as Henry VIII after 1623).
Shakespeare's first presentation of the play took place in 1612 at the Globe Theatre. Some scholars believe Shakespeare's successor John Fletcher collaborated or revised the play, and that it may have been written prior to 1603. In the play, Shakespeare played fast and loose with the truth as he deemed suitable for artistic merit and the political climate. The beheading of Anne Boleyn, for example, and the existence of Henry's last 4 wives goes unmentioned.
Two decades into his acting career, Irving began an engagement in the role of Mathias in The Bells at the Lyceum Theatre in Westminster that ran for 150 sold out nights and cemented Irving's relationship with the Batemans and the Lyceum. At Hezekiah Bateman's death, Irving took over management of the Lyceum. With his leading lady Ellen Terry and business manager Bram Stoker, Irving defined Shakespearean theater for 30 years.
Henry Irving is said to have counted his 1892 performance as Cardinal Wolsey as among his best. The cast during an 1893 U.S. tour: