Tudors, A2 History Help needed. (Elizabeth's Triumph)

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Adamk_14
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Here is my essay; Could someone give me some pointers, maybe even mark it. Please and thanks.

'The rebellions which occurred during the reigns of Edward VI and Mary I were mainly political in origin' (45 marks).

Political factors are those that involve changes in law and policies, changes in monarch or changes in enforcing new ideals such as the use of new prayer books. An example of a political reason for a rebellion would be introduction of act's like the vagrancy act by Somerset which fueled a rebellion. Even rebellions which seem to not have been political still have political underlying tones, i.e. the 'prayer book rebellion', which is also known as the western rebellion was mainly religious but had political involvement and may have ultimately been caused by Somerset's religious policies. Through the synopsis I gave I will endeavor to explain whether the rebellions across Edward and Mary's reigns were due to political Origin. I will discuss three rebellions (Kett's,Western and Wyatt's) and political they're in origin.

Somerset (1549-1553) was known amongst the government (Including privy council and parliament) to be a key minister of Edward. As Edward wasn't old enough to make decisions and needed help making them, Somerset was appointed, however; along with this he gained the power of a regent unofficially. Williams states that he had: “Virtually the power of a king”. Furthermore, instead of a regency council like Henry wanted for Edward, Somerset gained full power. With this power he had a title naming him “Lord Protector”; this made him to be viewed as autocratic amongst the public eye and within the government. Adding to this he ruled in a autocratic style; he used a the power of patronage amongst his gentry friends which allowed him to place them into the privy council and allow him to make proclamations easier as their would be more people to vote with him to pass proclamations he wanted. As a result of this he was viewed as autocratic amongst many people, this gave both the public reason to rebel against him. They disliked this autocratic behavior and so believed he was unfit to make such changes, this is evident as they outwardly spoke out that they wanted him to stop making religious changes and wait for Edward to become old enough to make them. This suggests that the western rebellion is not entirely political in origin, rather it suggests that it is due to social reasons. A reason why the western rebellion can be considered political in origin is because of the vagrancy act. The vagrancy act could be a suggested cause of the western rebellion as it didn't benefit anyone rather it branded vagrants and essentially enslaved them. Therefore it would make sense that people would oppose this oppressing policy made by Somerset by joining in the western rebellion. However, other factors suggested that the western rebellion wasn't entirely political in origin. Factors like religion suggest otherwise. People disagreed with his changes i.e. the prayer book and uniformity act of 1549. People were against this the fact that this act made changes to the religion conservative religion they were use too and so they joined a rebellion as they didn't agree with these changes as they wanted the religion to be conservative once again. It is evident that they didn't agree as 80% of London and East-Anglia were catholic. Haigh supports this by stating: “Nothing but a theological and liturgical compromise...which pleased no one but Gardiner”. Adding to this, if religion wasn't the main factor of the western rebellion then the rebels would not have included it in their main demands which suggest that the western rebellion was mainly religious in origin rather than political. However, evidence also suggests that class antagonism was also present during this period and therefore it meaning that the western rebellion also could've occurred due to social tensions amongst the ruling class and the ones below them rather then it being due to politics. However, overall it seems that the western rebellion was “principally religious” (Fletcher) but also involved other factors such as social-economic reasons.

Kett's rebellion can be considered as socio-economic in origin rather then political. One reason why it is economic in origin because the rebels demanded that the rents across England be change back to the way it was in the 1400's because they were very against rent racking, they also included in their list of demands that inflation should be tackled. These reasons suggest that Kett's rebellion was somewhat due to the economic position the country was in and thus suggest that Kett's rebellion was economic in origin. Furthermore, evidence also suggests that it was also social in origin as the rebels complained in their main list of demands about not being able to fish in certain areas. These reasons suggest that the rebellion was social in origin. However, some evidence shows that Kett's rebellion was political in origin. The fact that the rebels rioted and continued to tear down fences in the belief that the 'good duke' will pass a policy on enclosure suggests that his lack of political enforcement led to Kett's rebellion, however this didn't happen which made them more furious/ As a result they rebelled because they believed that Somerset was being prevented by the other Nobel’s and such and so a rebellion was formed to try force action. This suggests that the rebellion is political in origin as they rebelled because a policy on the removal of enclosure wasn't being passed. However, it can also be thought that Kett's rebellion wasn't political in origin as the rebels didn't include the removal of enclosure in their list of demands; this suggests that this wasn't a major factor for causing a rebellion. From all this I can gather that Kett's rebellion was mainly due to social reasons rather then being completely political, however still it's to be noted that their were political factors that did play a role in the rebellion.

Northumberland was also a key minister and had roughly the same power as Somerset and also played the same role (unofficial regent). The rebellion against Northumberland can be considered political in origin as Northumberland tried to usurp Mary via the Lady Jane Grey affair. Before Edwards death (1553 Edward died) both Edward and Northumberland tried to pass an accession act which would prevent Mary from being crowned by titling her as illegitimate and thus forcing Lady Jane Grey to the throne. However Mary gathered troops and the support of the privy council and over threw Northumberland and therefore this rebellion can be considered mainly political in origin as Mary wanted to be crowned but Northumberland tried to prevent this via an act.

Wyatt's rebellion was gentry led rebellion to replace Mary I (Gentry's wanted Elizabeth, and commoners wanted for Elizabeth not to marry Philip II). There are many political reasons which point to a political origin for the rebellion. The gentry wanted Elizabeth removed from the throne and replaced. There are a number of reasons why they wanted to replace Mary. Politically speaking many gentry couldn't accept her as queen and believed that she as she was illegitimate they couldn't accept her as queen this added to the reasons why they wanted to rebel and replace her. More evidence shows that the rebellion was political in origin, evidence such as the fact that the Privy council was in fear of having foreign members being introduced into a already large council, they feared this as they believed that if Spaniards were to join this council their changes would be less likely to be made and they also feared of being replaced. Adding to this they also feared that Philips marriage would give him more control over England and this would mean that England would be forced to do whatever he suggests i.e. go to war. And so they were against this, this gave more gentry and nobles reason to join the rebellion in effort to replace her. Lastly, Mary had also ignored the privy council a number of times and disregarded the opinions of many gentry and nobles making them feel incompetent and thus annoying them which gave them more reason to join in a rebellion. All these reasons point towards the rebellion being heavily influenced by political origins as there are a large number of reasons present which suggest the rebellion is mainly political in origin.

However some factors suggest the rebellion was due to Economic reasons rather then being political in origin. Economic reasons for the rebellion include that people feared their jobs would be overtaken by the Spaniards and therefore were for opposing it. “because you be our friends and because you be Englishmen”. This in turn added even more opposition and induced rebellion. Further economic reasons is that many commoners and gentry feared that taxes may increase as England may be dragged in to war as an ally if Spain ever decided to go to war with anyone. Therefore to prevent all this commoners and Gentry wanted to rebel even more.

There are also religious explanations which indicate that religion also influenced the rebellions somewhat. Religious reasons for Wyatt's rebellion include that Kent was a Protestant area and Philip was Catholic; they didn't want more Catholicism to be introduced in to the country as they would be outlawed and considered as heretics even more therefore out of fear they may have wanted to rebel to prevent this.

Considering all these factors, I can conclude each of the rebellions had other reasons than mainly politics, however it varies from rebellion to rebellion. Not all the rebellions were mainly political in origin in fact, Kett's rebellion was heavily influenced by economic origins rather then political and the western rebellion can be considered mainly due to religious reasons, however it can be thought that all the religious reasons were an offspring of the law he passed thus ultimately suggesting it was political in origin. And finally Wyatt's rebellion should be considered as mainly political in origin considering there are more political reasons for it being politically in origin than not therefore I can conclude that all the rebellions were affected by politics to an extent, however not all of them have political origins.
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Adamk_14
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thewhoviannerd
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I'm afraid I haven't got time to fully read through it (damn English coursework) but the first thing I'd say is it's probably too long. I did this question in a mock, and with timed conditions (45 mins) I only had time to write 4 pages.
The introduction can be cut down all that really needs to be said is:
-The three rebellions
-Where and when they took place, also whose reign it was in
-The different causes you'll be looking at (so political, economic etc. )

In general though it's very well written, with good historical interpretations (you don't loose marks without these, but you can gain them). Also good referring to question throughout
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Adamk_14
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I'm so glad someone replied to this thank you very much also thanks for the advice. Could you if you have free time read through it later. Also, if you need help on history work PM me, we could exchange work and maybe learn something new.
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thewhoviannerd
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No problem Right I've had a read through it now...

1st paragraph:i don't think the bit from 'somerset (1549-1553)' to 'naming him lord protector' is necessary. probably here all that needs to be said is the Henry VIII died while edward was 9, so was too young to rule, the his uncle the duke of somerset was named as his protector.
probably when you talk about 'autocratic power', that is political reason, and when you talk of the vagrancy act, that's a social reason.
split up that paragraph into factors, rather than just putting it all together.
good histiographical debate with numerous historians.

2nd paragraph: fishing in certain areas is probably more economic than social.

wyatt religious paragraph: you don't need to list that many factors as to why the gentry wanted to remove mary: it was mainly the protestant gentry that rebelled (eg sir thomas wyatt, sir james croft, sir peter carew), so in a catholic privy council, it was aruably just a rebellion of the disaffected nobility trying to gain more power. As i said, in an exam situation you really wouldn't have time to write all you did.
when talking about spanish influence, call it xenophobia. makes it sounds snazzier
also could talk protestant fear that philip II would bring over spanish inquisition (incredibly harsh)

good conclusion, made much better by the fact that there was consistent judgement throughout.

overall, a very good essay that looks at all the factors that you need to, and makes reference to the question throughout.

Hope this helps! and yes, that would be great ^.^ what're you studying at the moment?

(ps be aware that i am just a student, so if someone else says differently to my comments than they're more likely to be right )




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Adamk_14
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Thank you for the reply and the advice. I'm glad you read through it. I'll take into consideration the thing's you have mentioned. Currently i'm studying; Psychology (AQA),History (AQA) and Geography (Edexcel). How about you?
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thewhoviannerd
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It's no problem, happy to help

I have to say, Elizabeth's Truimph history people are in a minority. How's your coursework going?

I'm doing History, English lang/lit, and Politics
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Adamk_14
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(Original post by thewhoviannerd)
It's no problem, happy to help

I have to say, Elizabeth's Truimph history people are in a minority. How's your coursework going?

I'm doing History, English lang/lit, and Politics
Been hating the coursework so much. It's so long what about you?


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js15398
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I did this essay about 2 months ago in class and one thing I noticed is that, whilst its written very well, you need to be very cautious with your structure.
My teacher always goes on about splitting paragraphs thematically not chronologically as you have done.
If you do that it will not only read better, but it will give you a synoptic perspective where you can really delve into the debates involved in this topic

Hope that helps!
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thewhoviannerd
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(Original post by Adamk_14)
Been hating the coursework so much. It's so long what about you?


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i know, and its also that you have to do so much wider reading (which with two other subjects i dont have time for) in order to be able to write it.

some perspective: its taken me 3 weeks to write 2400 words of english coursework. since september ive only managed 2700 words of history.
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Adamk_14
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(Original post by thewhoviannerd)
i know, and its also that you have to do so much wider reading (which with two other subjects i dont have time for) in order to be able to write it.

some perspective: its taken me 3 weeks to write 2400 words of english coursework. since september ive only managed 2700 words of history.
I completed my coursework. How about you?


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thewhoviannerd
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(Original post by Adamk_14)
I completed my coursework. How about you?


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yeah, managed to complete it a couple of weeks ago- absolutely hated doing it though :P how did you find it?

also, how is your revision going?
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Adamk_14
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(Original post by thewhoviannerd)
yeah, managed to complete it a couple of weeks ago- absolutely hated doing it though :P how did you find it?

also, how is your revision going?
Was an absolute biaatch to do. Took forever. And my revision is okay. I'm still really worried. :/ how about you?


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