Rebellions in Tudor England

An outline of own knowledge for the 5 rebellions we could be asked about on the controversy question for the edexcel history paper.

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Pilgrimage of Grace events

  • 3 separate risings.
  • Began in Lincolnshire 1536 where royal commissioners were looking at dissolving smaller monasteries, collecting tax and inspecting the clergy.
  • Captin Cobbler helped seize a commissioner, burn his folders and then march to Louth.
  • Violence esculated as Dr Raynes was beaten to death.
  • Gentry made grievances and marched to Lincoln.
  • 10th October, the King sent them a letter promising harsh punishment, so the gentry fled and the remaining rebels dispersed by the time the King's men reached them.
  • 4th October- Aske visited the rebels, read their grievances, took their Oath and took charge of the rebellion.
  • He got support from Beverley and Howdenshire and marched to York.
  • They kept everything peaceful and asked monasteries in York to resist dissolution.
  • Genry took control and didnt take Carlisle so marched towards Pontefract.
  • Darcey at Pontefract Castle claimed he didnt have enough resources to hold out against the rebels so submitted to them.
  • Darcey joined the rebellion and 30,000 men met at Pontefract Castle (it became the focal point of the rebellion)
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Pilgrimage of Grace events continued

  • Government began to react- Shrewesbury advanced with 8000 men and Norfolk met with the rebels.
  • He got them to abandon the rebellion whilst he gave the king the petition.
  • Norfolk promised they'd get a free pardon and parliament to discuss their grievances.
  • By January they had still heard nothing.
  • Bigod tried to make a rising in January but failed to caputre Carlisle and Scarborough and Hull.
  • This gave Henry the opportunity to seek retribution and hang the ringleaders.
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Causes of the Pilgrimage of Grace

  • Poor harvest.
  • Religious causes- they worried that their local parishes would be targetted next
  • Intervention of the gentry shows the concerns were from whole communities, not just rich or just the poor.
  • 1536 policies caused resentment.
  • Could be spontaneous but Gentry leadership and knowing York wasn't ready to rise suggests otherwise.
  • Gentry took control of leadership and wrote out the grievances. 
  • They claimed they joined the rebellion to control it, yet their grievances were also implemented.
  • Cobbler claimed he never trusted them.
  • Some historians say there was a political conspiracy- the Aragonese faction joined as they wanted Mary back in the succession.
  • Hussey, one of the leaders had served in Mary's household
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How serious was the rebellion

  • Over 30,000 people rebelled.
  • The rebels didnt march south so had no interest in capturing London- shows they didnt threaten Henry's position as monarch.
  • Threatened goverment as the rebels wanted to change Henry's policies and remove Cromwell.
  • Serious as the nobility, who were good leaders, joined in.
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Western Rebellion 1549 events

  • 1547- riots began in Penryn after William Body got Archdeacon of Cornwall and exploited reform for his own gain.
  • 1548 he was murdered.
  • Rebellion began after the Prayer Book was enforced and to be used on Whit Sunday.
  • Arundell drew up grievances and marched to Devon where a rising in Sampford Courtenay was occuring.
  • A local priest was forced to ignore the Prayer Book and return to a traditional mass.
  • Gentry didnt interfere after a JP was murdered.
  • Carew inflamed the situation.
  • The rebels moved to Clyd St Mary where the Denys and Pollards sympathised and didnt want reform until Edward was of age.
  • Russell reacted but only had a small inadequate force compared to the rebels.
  • Russell wasnt successful in recruiting more men.
  • 28th July Russell attacked on the River Otter.
  • Rebels dispersed into the West Country.
  • 16th August the rebels were defeated at Sampford Courtenay.
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Causes of the Western Rebellion

  • The rebels made 3 sets of grievances. 
  • All 3 wanted the church to return to how it was at the end of Henry's reign.
  • They didnt want changes until Edward was old enough.
  • Arundell may have joined as his family lost influence under Somerset- his brother lost his position of JP and their disgrace gave the Carew family control of the area.
  • There wasnt an attack on the monarch.
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Kett's Rebellion events

  • Cavendish was about to enclose common land.
  • The commons responded by blowing up rabbit warrens.
  • Attacks on enclosures were carried out in other parts of Norfolk.
  • In Norfolk, Flowerdew enclosed old monastic land and claimed ownership of it.
  • The residents said it belonged to the parish and wanted to use it but Flowerdew wanted to knock it down.
  • Flowerdew's fences were attacked and he tried to impliment Kett's enclosures so he sympathised and took control of the rebellion
  • They were denied into Norwich so they set up camp at Mousehold Heath with 16000 men.
  • They created the Norfolk articles and sent them to Somerset as a petition.
  • More camps were made in Suffolk, Kent and Cambridge
  • Gentry and government weren't attacked and none of them were attempted to be recruited.
  • 22nd July- took Norwich but treated authorities with respect.
  • Imprisoned Aldermen in comfort.
  • Northampton offered a full pardon to rebels that dispersed.
  • Rebels refused and attacked the city, causing Lord Sheffield. 
  • Kett recurited in Yarmouth but Warwick's force trapped the rebels.
  • Warwick and Kett negociated everyone but Kett would get a free pardon but his men created a squirmish so they couldnt get a peaceful outcome.
  • More mercenaries joined Warwick, 300 rebels died and Kett was executed.
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Kett Rebellion causes and grievances

  • Many of the poor residents were too poor yet forced to pay tax.
  • There was an increase in foreigners and beggars.
  • Norfolk articles- religious nature, each grievance began with 'we pray that'.
  • Some spoke about quality of the clergy.
  • Others spoke about tax.
  • Some spoke about royal officials and their abuse of powers.
  • Many spoke about economic rights and justice.
  •          The fact they sent petitions to higher government shows they thought their local leaders were responsible and weren’t threatening central government or Tudor state.

  •        Somerset sympathised with the governments neglect of the rebels’ villages, may have caused the rebellion.

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Wyatt's Rebellion events

  • Wyatt wanted to appeal to religious fears due to Mary's succession.
  • Councillors feared losing influence if Mary married Philip of Spain.
  • The plan was to marry Mary to Courtenay due to his Aragonese links but she insisted on the Spanish marriage which worried the French ambassador.
  • Wyatt co-ordinated risings in Hertfordshire under Croft, Devon under Carew, Leicester under Suffolk and Kent under Wyatt
  • Plans of the rebellion leaked so only Wyatt got an adequate force and raised 3000 men.
  • Closeness to London made them try and take the capital.
  • He wanted to seize the Queen and change her intentions, if this failed he would replace her with Elizabeth.
  • Mary considered leaving but appealed to London.
  • Pembrooke's forces let them pass.
  • They found opposition at Ludgate and were trapped.
  • Wyatt surrendered and the leaders were executed.
  • Lady Jane Grey and her husband were executed so no more rebellions could be made trying to replace Mary with her.
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Cause of the Wyatt Rebellion

  • Mary's marriage to Philip of Spain.
  • Wyatt appealed to patriotism saying Spain would dominate England and subject them to their methods.
  • Many of the rebels were Protestant but Wyatt disclaimed religious motives.
  • Courtenay was easily manipulated, as shown when he easily confessed to Gardiner.
  • Carew had the necessary contacts to plan all the risings.
  • Being anti-spanish may have been the easiest way to get support.
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Northern Rebellion 1569 events

  • A plan to marry Mary Queen of Scots to Norfolk after she arrived in England.
  • Elizabeth found out and was furious, causing Norfolk to flee.
  • Norfolk wanted to take action with Neville and Percy as they didnt like the church settlement and lost the positions Mary gave them on the council.
  • They planned to force Elizabeth to proclaim Mary as her heir.
  • After Norfolk's men refused to act he threw himself on Elizabeth's mercy.
  • Catholic allies kept urging Neville and Percy to act.
  • They met with the Council of the North and didnt show up at parliament after Elizabeth called them.
  • They raised forces after Lady Westmorland called them cowards.
  • they raised 5,500 troops and expected help from Lancashire and Spain but it never showed.
  • They hesitated when they heard Mary was being moved south and heard Warwick was making a force against them.
  • They retreated and captured Bernard Castle.
  • They got no help from Scotland.
  • They gave up hope and fled to Scotland.
  • Northumberland was given up and executed for treason.
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Seriousness of Northen Rebellion

  • lacked widespread support.
  • threatened Elizabeth's position.
  • Chance of foreign interference. 
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