impact of Economic, social & Religious Change

  • Created by: cieran32
  • Created on: 08-11-18 22:51

Impact of Socioeconomic Change During Elizabeth I'

Socioeconomic changes had been accelerating throughout the 1500s. The impact of these changes was considerable for ordinary people under Elizabeth I.

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  • Elizabeth I inherited the problem of inflation from her predecessors.
  • Elizabeth I tried to tackle this. She did this by seizing revenue from the Church to Rome, which Mary I had reintroduced
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Poor Law

  • Attempts had been made to reduce poverty by Edward VI in 1552. For example, beggars had to register to be allowed to beg.
  • In 1563, Elizabeth I's government tried to reduce the number of roaming paupers. It passed the Statute of Artificers which intended to make apprentices stay for seven years.
  • The Poor Law was rudimentary and many people did not believe there was much of a difference between the impotent poor (those unable to work) and idle poor (those able to work).
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  • Most commoners were subsistence farmers. This meant that they produced enough food to look after their own family, but little more.
  • Small-scale farmers were still being threatened by enclosure. The government was trying to limit enclosure.
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  • Taxation had been a major grievance which triggered rebellion during the reigns of Elizabeth I's predecessors.
  • To avoid such conflict, Elizabeth I avoided reforming the taxation system.
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Impact of Religious Change During Elizabeth I's Re

Elizabeth I tried to find a middle ground between Catholicism and radical Protestantism. Inevitably, not everyone would be happy with her settlement

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Protestant opponents

  • Many hardline Protestants were dissatisfied with the Elizabethan settlement and wanted her to pursue further reform.
  • Protestant reformers tried to pressure Elizabeth I.
    • Margaret Aston has analysed a painting called 'Edward VI and the Pope' which used Edward VI's reputation as a strong Protestant to pressure Elizabeth I to further her own reforms.
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A successful settlement

  • But the opposition to Elizabeth's settlement was relatively minimal and non-violent.
  • Elizabeth's settlement was also accepted internationally. Arguably, this is because figures such as the Pope and King Philip II believed Elizabeth I could be eventually persuaded back to Catholicism.
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A compromise

  • Elizabeth was trying to find a compromise between Catholicism and radical Protestantism.
  • Through the Act of Supremacy, Elizabeth was the head of the Church.
  • But many aspects of religious worship contained the traditional rituals of the Catholic Church
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Catholic opponents

  • Almost all the Catholic bishops that were installed by Mary refused to accept Elizabeth's settlement and were dismissed from their positions.
  • Some ministers refused to use the new Prayer Book and continued to use the Catholic Prayer Book
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