Elizabeth & Instablilty

  • Created by: NHow02
  • Created on: 11-05-19 16:05

Economic (1558-1603)


3. Poor Act of 1597, 1st time offenders where whipped + sent back to Parish of birth (repeat offenders were executed)                                                                             - LAID FOUNDATIONS FOR THE POOR LAW FOR THE NEXT 250 YEARS

Elizabeth ensured a minimum level of subsistence for the deserving poor (a legislative achievement that remained largely intact until 1834)


harvest failures caused food shortages in the mid-1550's & 1590's (Plague also affected London badly in 1563, resulting in the death of 20% of city's population)                                                                                                                                                  1. smallpox epidemic of 1562 almost killed the Queen

- widespread Vagabondage+ Cecil worried its effect on law & order (increased due to trade embargos on wool in 1563-4, 1568-73 & 1580's)

1. Poor Act of 1572, established the principal that local ratepayers were required to pay for poor relief (added branding to the range of punishments)                                          - HARSHEST LAW OF HER REIGN (ear-boring + exectution was not removed until 1593)

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Religious (1558-1603)


- despite being Excommunicated, Elizabeth still vetoed Bishop Sandy's Bill in 1581 to increase penalties against recusants (most favoured loyalty to the Tudor dynasty + landowner's preferred self-preservation)                                                           1. the death penalty for saying Mass in 1571 no longer a 1st Offence

- Mary signed her name on the Bond of Association after the Throckmorton Plot in 1583 (agreeing to her own execution if she attempted to remove Elizabeth)                            1. imprisoned for 19 years before being exectuted in 1587


Archbishop Grindal (appointed 1575) encouraged Prophesysings + lax about enforcing conformity (courtiers stopped Bishop Freke suspending presbyterians)                     1. Leicester Knolleys secured a preaching license for John Field

- triggered the Northern rebellion in 1569, which conspired to marry her to Norfolk (amassed 3,800 foot soldiers + 1600 horsemen & executed 450 rebels + issued penal laws).  1. 1585 Act 'against Jesuits' executed 146 priests

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Political (1558-1603)


During the early stages, the structure of gov. managed to avoid factional rivalry...

- for example, no single minister - not even Cecil - had complete control over patronage (many also had wives or daughters who served in Elizabeth's Privy Chamber)

various influential families at court + council balanced one another (for example, the Parrs & Boleyns were presented - family connections overcame religious differences)    1. John Guy argues 'the keynote of the Elizabethan system was homogeneity'


- a number of ministers died in quick succession during the 1580's leaving only 11 council members by 1597 (death of Dudley in 1588 was a significant blow)              1. replaced with middle-aged sons who often lacked their father's skills

1601 - during the Essex Rebellion many of his factions (Lord Mountjoy, Robert Sidney & Lord Henry Howard) remained loyal to the Queen but Essex executed in 1601

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