20 Mart 2009 Cuma


Absolutism Challenged:The English Revolution

England in the early 17th century
A society in transformation: old elite (aristocracy) vs. new elite (gentry and professional classes)
A relatively centralized monarchy

Parliament: House of Lords, House of Commons- the former was still the more powerful body, but the latter was also rising in status.

Common Law: the emergence of an ideology of the common law as the basis of the unwritten “constitution” of England.

Religion: Catholics reduced to a minority, Anglican Church established as the moderately Protestant official Church of England, and Puritans, dissenting and more radical Puritans
Causes of conflict under the early Stuart kings, James I and Charles I

Fiscal: Difficulties of financing the rising expenses of warfare without aggravating powerful groups

Religious: Puritan resentment of Anglican dominance and control; suspicions that the Stuart kings were secretly Catholic.

Constitutional: Resentment at the Stuart monarchs’ extensive use of the royal prerogative in fiscal, legal and administrative manners; ideology of the common law counters arguments about the divine right of kings

The Civil War and the Commonwealth

Parliament convened (Short and Long Parliaments): 1640-2

Civil War: 1642-6. Army of Parliament vs. army of king.

The “Puritan Republic”: 1649-1660

Charles I executed, monarchy and House of Lords abolished.

The Cromwellian Protectorate: 1653-1660

Oliver Cromwell rules England with dictatorial powers.

Oliver Cromwell

The Restoration: 1660-1688
Successful policies of Charles II win him many allies in the Parliament, known as Tories; critics known as Whigs.
Tensions arise because of the conversion of Charles II and his son James II to Catholicism and because of their attempts to appoint Catholics to official positions.
The Glorious Revolution: 1688-89.
The Parliament invites James’s Protestant daughter Mary and her husband William of Orange, the stadtholder of Netherlands to England to protect “traditional liberties.”

Mary Stuart & William of Orange

Comparison with France
-Both French and English monarchs try to augment their power and to legitimate their attempts to do so by relying on the arguments about the divine right of kings. But Louis XIV turns out to be the better politician, using the arts of persuasian and cooptation as well as confrontation.
-The insistence of the later Stuart monarchs on their Catholic agenda undermines their standing in the eyes of their Protestant subjects, who had begun to equate Englishness with Protestantism.
-The groups that resisted absolutism in England had a more powerful social and ideological base.
-John Locke as the ideologue of the Glorious Revolution and a source of inspiration for later constitutionalists.