Starting of the Civil War

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Why was there a war?
The arrest of the five members - showed the King to be untrustworthy breaching
Arguments over the control of the militia - who should put down Irish rebellion?
The Irish Rebellion of 1641 - claims that they were acting in the King's name.
The reforms of Archbishop Laud.
The implementation of the prayer book in Scotland - the Covenanters
The First Bishops War, The Second Bishops War
The Increasing power of Parliament - looked on by some as too powerful.
Charles' financial policies - Extension of Ship money
Charles's personality - easily persuaded, introverted, arrogant, fiercely loyal
Charles's belief in the Divine Right of Kings.
Personal rule - dismissing Parliament in 1629
Army plot
Execution of Strafford - Charles's true sin, he won't let himself be put down by Parliament
When did war become inevitable?
War was never really inevitable, there was no call for war from the people nor was there
much support for it when it came. This is clearly shown by the level of neutrality that
existed at the start of the war particularly in Cheshire. Negotiations continued virtually up
to the point where Charles raised his standard at Nottingham. Perhaps the escape of
Charles from London shows that war may be more likely because the mob is now in
control and Charles is desperate to regain control. Ultimately though negotiations
continue unsuccessfully for months, many believe it will never come to war or if it does it
will be one battle and that will be it. At no point at the start did anyone really predict what
sort of war was coming. So in my opinion its Charles raising his standard at Nottingham in
August 1644 when everything becomes inevitable because; it symbolises that Charles is
ready to fight, that he will not continue negotiations and gives Parliament an excuse to
fight. The King has now declared war on his own people.
What negotiations were going on and were they likely to succeed?
Parliament's final negotiations with the King were the 19 Propositions in June 1642 , they
were seen as Parliament's final offer towards the King. They were effectively a
declaration of the war aims of Parliament. The King considered then carefully rejected the
proposal. Was it ever going to succeed? Probably not as it took too much control over
the King's private life and the life of his children. It asked too much of the King and so it's
not exactly surprising that he rejected them. Negotiations continued but then on July 12th
Parliament decided to create an army and the King raised his.
Who was to blame for the slide to war?
Both sides had their blames both historically and in the more recent times; Parliament had
always had trust issues right from day one when they didn't grant him tonnage and
poundage for life. They had pushed the King perhaps too far in their demands for power
and in doing so had alienated many of their own. It can be argued as war came closer that
they were looking for an excuse to start it; they can be considered naive if they thought
that Charles would consider the 19 propositions realistically. But Charles is not

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Parliament an people. He was out of touch , he didn't understand the problems that
existed in his country. His calls for uniformity in everything for local government to religion
seemed misplaced or at least naive if he ever thought they would help him claim absolute
power. His henpecked, malleable nature meant he was too easily influenced by others,
especially the Queen. They made them take rash decisions that weren't well placed like
the arrest of the five members.…read more


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