Robert Bolt's play A Man for All Seasons presents a "hero of the self" whose unwavering integrity collides with King Henry VIII's egoistic drive to wrench personal salvation and political permanence for the Tudor line from an unwilling, because politically cornered, Pope. The Pope refuses to condone an annulment for Henry's marriage to Catherine of Aragon (of Spain) having already dispensed with biblical law to permit him to marry her in the first place. Sir Thomas More ignores Henry's pleading demands, throws off the Duke of Norfolk's friendly advice, and places his family in jeopardy, because he cannot in good conscience submit his immortal soul to the commands of a mortal king. Neither does the political powder-keg that Henry's enemies may see More's obstinence as a signal for revolt convince him to submit. This crucible of moral standards takes place in the early sixteenth century, but Bolt contemporizes the drama by inserting an audience go-between, the Common Man, whose asides remind the viewer of More's relevance to twentieth-century heroism. The Common Man makes all too clear that the likes of a Sir Thomas More are as rare today as they were in Henry's VIII's kingdom.