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Transcript of The Tudors
What do you know about Tudor Britain?
- Political Field > Liberation from continental dominion; the King became the head of the Church.
- Social Field > Critical attitude
- Economic Field > Breaking away with Rome meant stop paying taxes to Rome. The dissolution of the monasteries contributed to the consolidation of the Higher Middle Classes.
- Religious Field > There were no important changes in dogma or rituals but the most important change was the Royal Supremacy of the Church.
Consequences of the REFORMATION
Implications of the REFORMATION
In the national field:
- The conversion of England to Protestantism. The development of the National Church strengthened the growth of the Modern National State.
- Feeling of Nationalism.
- Feeling of individualism because private judgement, enterprise and personal initiative were fostered by the government.
In the international field:
- The division of Western Christendom into Protestant and Catholic areas.
- The desire to cultivate literacy and to spread the regard for the vernacular.
- The expansion of the Church of England following the routes of British exploration and colonization.
Steps leading to Reformation
In times of Henry VIII:
Many acts were passed by Parliament to check the political and economic power of the church and to break away with Roman Catholicism:
- Annates Act: It reduced the commission fees to be paid to Rome when new bishops were appointed.
- Act against Appeals: It stated that no appeals could be made to the Pope against decisions made by the English Courts.
- Act of Succession: It declared the dissolution of Henry VIII first marriage and stated the legitimacy of his second one.
- Act of Supremacy: It marked the breach with Rome. The monarch and not the Pope was the head of the Church of England.
- Act of Monasteries: The lands owned by the monasteries were confiscated and nationalized. The monarch sold those lands to the higher middle classes.
In times of Edward VI:
The Church of England was made even more Protestant by a number of measures that, in many cases, meant an offense to the Catholic population:
- Statutes and pictures were to be removed from churches.
- Book of Protestant sermons was printed and had to be read in all churches.
- Prayer Book with new services for all churches was introduced. The changes included moving the altar to the centre of the church, plain clothes for the priest and an end to parts of the service that just English translations of the old Catholic services.
In times of Elizabeth I:
She established a compromise between the extreme measures taken by Edward VI and the Catholic spirit of much of the English population.
- The Act of Supremacy: The monarch was made Supreme Governor of the Church of England (not the Supreme Head as stated by Henry VIII).
- The Act of Uniformity: It made attendance to the church and the use of the Book of Common Prayer compulsory.
* The Rise of the National Monarchy: In this system, the ruling power is not checked by any other agency, be it judicial, legislative, religious, economic or electoral.
* The Relationship between the Monarch and Parliament:
There was a community of interests between Parliament and the Monarchy. Though Parliament didn't gain any right, different events in the country gave it the opportunity to consolidate its position as a governing body. During the struggle between Henry VIII and the Church of Rome, for example, it played a decisive part in supporting the king.
- The Black Death and the decay of the Feudal System had consequences upon the population and the economy of the country.
- Landowners started renting their lands. They ceased to be farmers and became "squires" living on his rents.
- Two forms of land utilization: arable lands (small tenant farmers would work the land) and pastures (big landowners used the lands for sheep raising)
- Agriculture, the main activity of the country in earlier times, was now affected by new economic activities:
# The expansion of the markets
# The Discovery of new sea routes
# The growth of trade
The Emergence of England as a Sea Power
Consequences of the defeat of the Spanish Armada:
- Protestantism was established as a permanent part of the English culture and civilization.
- The victory gave the English a new sense of pride and self-confidence.
- Strong feeling towards the Great Queen who personified the Nation.
- England rose herself as a sea- power by having the monopoly of trade.
- It was a protectionist system that intended to foster production in order for the country to become self- sufficient.
- It consisted in the protection of agriculture, industry and navigation:
# The Corn Acts put heavy taxes on the import of corns as a way of protecting the national production. BUT, in times of famine this Act meant great damage to the population.
# The Patent System protected new inventions and industries. BUT this resulted in many monopolies.
# The Navigation Acts established that imported goods coming from other countries or the colonies should be transported by English ships.
- This system lasted one century in Home Industry and three centuries in International Trade.
The Defeat of the Spanish Armada
The Consolidation of the Higher Middle Classes (HMCs) started with the dissolution of the Monasteries (by Henry VIII):
- Merchants and traders acquired lands at a very low price and became big landowners.
- Because having lands was a pre-requisite for being a member of Parliament, the HMCs acquired political power. They became part of the House of Commons.
- The decline of the power of the nobility due to their loss of lands, gave way to the consolidation of the power of the HMCs.
It put emphasis on individualism (this feeling started growing in England due to the renewed self confidence resulting from the rise of the HMCs, the defeat of the Spanish Armada and the Reformation).
- It was a reaction against the medieval theological and philosophical teaching based on the authority of the church.
- It put an end to the monopoly of the Church as the only source of education.
The Rise of Science
- What distinguishes the Modern period from the Middle Ages is Science, which achieves its triumph in the 17th C, the Age of Reason.
- The rise of science in the Modern world meant a change in man's attitude: for the first time, man began to question whether the things he thought to be true were really so.
- Some of the most important names in this movement were:
The founder of Modern Philosophy:
"I think, therefore, I am"
The father of Modern Science:
He developed the telescope and observed and supported the Copernican heliocentric theory
The creator of empiricism:
He established and popularized the scientific method.
He formulated the heliocentric model of the universe, which situated the sun rather than the Earth at the centre.
Entertainment in Elizabethan England
- His legacy was important not only in the literary field but also in the linguistic field since he made a creative use of the language and coined many new words.
- He is regarded as the English greater poet and playwright.
- He wrote 38 plays, 154 sonnets, 2 long narrative poems. The most widely known are: Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet, The Tempest, Othello and Macbeth.
1485 - 1603