Elizabeth's Probelms on Ascention

  • Created by: April15
  • Created on: 18-05-19 14:31
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  • Virgin Queen: Legitimacy, Gender and Marriage
    • Legitimacy refers to whether the monarch is legally entitled to rule
      • The pope had refused to accept Henry's marriage to Elizabeth's mother
        • When Anne Boleyn was executed in 1536, Henry VII excluded Elizabeth from the succession
          • He reversed his decision before his death
      • Many Catholics questioned Elizabeth's legitimacy, claiming that she had no right to the throne
        • This created a real risk of rebellion
          • Elizabeth was a Protestant, her predecessor Mary I was a Catholic
    • Elizabeth was unmarried and it was unusual for a woman to rule in her own right - Christian traditions suggested that women should follow men's authority
      • Having a husband would reduce Elizabeth's power, her husband would be expected to govern the country and deal with parliament
        • If she married a Protestant it would anger Catholics
          • If she married a Catholic it would upset Protestants
      • Many people disapproved of the idea of a queen reagent (a queen who actually ruled)
        • Elizabeth needed an heir, if she died without an heir, the vacant throne could cause civil war to arise
      • Marriage would involve England in expensive wars, damaging royal finances and increasing taxation
        • The crown was already in debt £300000 when Elizabeth ascended
        • Elizabeth's government needed money
    • Elizabeth was 21 years old and inexperienced
      • She needed the support and advice of her Privy Council and Secretary of State - Sir William Cecil
    • Elizabeth could issue royal proclamations and had prerogative powers (governing without parliaments consent - especially in forgein policies)


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