James I and the Catholics

Brief outline to James I and Catholics - AS level History AQA

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  • Created by: Clodagh
  • Created on: 21-04-13 14:52
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  • James I and Catholics
    • James' views towards Catholics
      • In the late 16th century, persecution of Catholics was quite severe following the outbreak of war with Spain in the late 1580's
        • They were seen as traitors and so fines for recusants were increased
          • 146 Catholics were executed for being or for sheltering priests
      • Catholics hoped they would be able to practise their faith in private, unmolested by the law and its recusancy fines after James' accession to the throne
      • Initially, James didn't mind Catholics and would not "persecute any that will be quiet and give an outward obedience to the law"
      • By 1604, James had been forced to adapt his policies towards Catholics because of the adverse reaction toleration provoked amongst James' Protestant subjects
        • He didn't want to antagonise parliament when he was trying to promote a union between England and Scotland
    • The Gunpowder Plot, 1605
      • The impact upon Catholics after a settled peace with Spain in 1604 was that it deprived them of the hope of foreign intervention to promote their cause
      • The plot was a rebellion from Catholics after they hoped for more toleration
        • The main plotters were from the gentry as they were mainly affected by recusancy fines
          • They hired a cellar and dug a tunnel under the Houses of Parliament and filled it with gunpowder
            • Guy Fawkes would be the one to set it alight when James entered the building
      • The plot was revealed when one conspirator sent a warning to a relative to keep away from Parliament
      • James would only be surrounded by Scotsmen after the incident
        • He wouldn't even appear in public
      • After it's discovery, recusancy fines increased and Catholics were no longer allowed to live in or near London
      • Catholics were made to take an 'oath of allegiance' to James. It stated that the pope had no right to depose the king
      • The plot had been going on for 18 months
      • Robert Catesby was the main man behind it
    • Treatment of Catholics, 1613-25
      • The impact of negotiations for a Spanish marriage from 1613 onwards on James' policy towards Catholics softened
        • There were no executions and recusancy fines became more relaxed
      • The impact of the Thirty Years War was Catholicism became a major political issue and fears about popery increased as well as the crown's commitment to true religion
        • There was a growth in anti-Catholicism and penal laws were relaxed


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