Political and Religious Radical Groups, 1640s and 1650s

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  • Political and Religious Radical Groups, 1640s and 1650s
    • Fifth Monarchists
      • Key Figures
        • Major-General Thomas Harrison
        • Vavasor Powell
        • Morgan Llwyd
        • John Rogers
      • Supporters
        • Army
      • Ideas
        • Belief in the imminent establishment of the kingdom of heaven on earth
        • Wanted a regime run by the 'Saints'
          • Belief derived from millenarianism
        • The Rump prevents the establishment of godly rule
        • Opposed the Protectorate
      • Influence and Level of Threat
        • There were only 12 or 13 Fifth Monarchists in parliament
        • The Nominated Assembly may have been the height of the influence of this group on central government but the influence was limited
        • Cromwell placed some temporarily in prisons
    • Ranters
      • Dates
        • Late 1640s
      • Key Figures
        • Laurence Clarkson
        • Thomas Webb
      • Ideas
        • Believed in predestination - a logical conclusion that they could live life as they wanted
        • Some denied that God existed independently
          • He could be a man or nature
        • Millenarianism seen as a part of Ranter writings
        • Focus on blasphemy and excesses
      • Influence and Level of Threat
        • Feared by the Conservative gentry
        • No Ranter work was printed after 1650
        • There is little evidence of organisations or groups
        • There was a lack of Ranter movement - did they exist?
    • Independents or Congregationalists
      • Key Figures
        • Cromwell
      • Ideas
        • Separatist or Independent Protestant congregations
      • Influence or Level of Threat
        • Extreme sectaries threatened to create religious chaos
    • Baptists
      • Dates
        • before 1640s
      • Key Figures
        • Paul Hobson
        • Charles Fleetwood
        • William Packer
        • Robert Bennet
        • Henry Lawrence
      • Supporters
        • Cromwell (toleration)
      • Ideas
        • Practice of 'believers' - adult baptism
        • Church of England was not a true Church and only true believers should commune together in a separate church
        • Strict Biblicism
        • Equality within a church structure of voluntary members
        • Millenarianism
        • Anti-Catholicism
        • Particular Baptists were more Calvinist
      • Influence and Level of Threat
        • Its development was helped by divisions between Presbyterians and Independents
        • There were some Baptists preaching in regiments of the Neew Model Army
        • Used propaganda
        • By 1660 there were about 25,000 Baptists
    • The Quakers
      • Dates
        • Late 1640s
      • Key Figures
        • Margaret Fell
        • George Fox
        • James Nayler
      • Ideas
        • Rejected formalism of most religions (no ceremony or structure of ministers)
        • Rejected predestination
        • Carried inner light
        • Worship was informal 'meetings'
        • Women seen as equal
        • Literal interpretation of Jesus' teachings
      • Influence and Level of Threat
        • Had support from almost 60,000
        • Revolutionary group
        • After 1660 they became pacifists
    • Seekers
      • Dates
        • 1646
      • Key Figures
        • Thomas Edwards
        • William Erbery
        • John Milton
      • Ideas
        • Producing a negative image of all religious radical groups
        • Rejected the established church
        • Reliance on revelation through the Holy Spirit
        • Antinomianism (those destined to achieve salvation could not sin)
      • Influence and Level of Threat
        • Little influence
    • Muggletonians
      • Dates
        • 1652
      • Key Figures
        • John Robins
        • John Reeve
        • Lodowick Muggleton
      • Ideas
        • Claimed to be the reincarnation of Christ
        • Witnesses of revelation
        • Millenarians
      • Influence and Level of Threat
        • Support bases in London and the South
        • Underground organisation
        • Little political influence - imprisoned 1653

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