Short term causes of the civil war

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Divine Right of Kings

  • Charles belief of the Divine Right of King; monarchs weer God's appointed rulers on earth, and therefore noone was above them. 
  • Charles introduced unpopular taxes, such as Ship Money, which was collected from the whole country, even at peace times.
  • Charles personal rule was mostly influenced and dominated by the personalities of William Laud and Thomas Stafford. 
  • He conflicted with parliament, as he believed he had the right to subsidies and money from parliament when he wanted without consenting any grievances or addressing the propositions and the Grand Remonstrance. 
  • Charles way of rule was seen to be outdated.
  • Parliament wanted a constitutional monarch; in other words rule in conjuction with Parliament.
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Charles' advisers - Laud and Stafford

  • Long parliament's aims were to get rid of evil and corrupt ministers influencing the king
  • The successes of the Long Parliament was the imprisonment of Laud, and the execution of Stafford. 
  • Laud was disliked due to his religious reforms
  • Stafford was disliked for trying to undermine parliament, and always trying to find ways to avoid calling parliament. 
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The Bishops War

  • Charles and Laud tried to impose religious reforms on Scotland, for example they imposed the English Prayer Book in Scottish churches in 1636. 
  • This caused an uproar against Charles and Laud 
  • Laud was already highly unpopular in England, so when there was rebellion happened in Scotland, Charles responded by raising forces against Scotland. 
  • Many in England were against fighting against Protestants. 
  • Charles was defeated, and had to call Long Parliament back as he needed the funds to pay compensation to Scotland and the upkeep of the army. 
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The Long and Short Parliament

The Short Parliament:

  • Failed to grant Charles the money he needed 
  • They demanded that Charles would meet the grievances before any financial settlements
  • Haggling and negotiations went against the belief of Divine Right, and Charles dissolved parliament 
  • The short parliament lasted only 3 weeks, and was a back log of moans from MPs about the lack of parliament for 11 years, additionally, the dissolution of parliament had worsened the relationship between King and Parliament.

The Long Parliament: 

  • No choice in dissolving, Charles needed the money
  • John Pym leaded parliament, and made ship money illegal, abolished the machinery of the Kings prerogative government, including the Star Chamber and the Court of High Commission. Laud was arrested and Stafford executed. The Triennal Act was passed. Demands were made - the Ten propositions and Nineteen propositions.
  • Money was granted but not enough
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The Long and Short Parliament

The Short Parliament:

  • Failed to grant Charles the money he needed 
  • They demanded that Charles would meet the grievances before any financial settlements
  • Haggling and negotiations went against the belief of Divine Right, and Charles dissolved parliament 
  • The short parliament lasted only 3 weeks, and was a back log of moans from MPs about the lack of parliament for 11 years, additionally, the dissolution of parliament had worsened the relationship between King and Parliament.

The Long Parliament: 

  • No choice in dissolving, Charles needed the money
  • John Pym leaded parliament, and made ship money illegal, abolished the machinery of the Kings prerogative government, including the Star Chamber and the Court of High Commission. Laud was arrested and Stafford executed. The Triennal Act was passed. Demands were made - the Ten propositions and Nineteen propositions.
  • Money was granted but not enough
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The Irish Rebellion - October 1641

  • The absence of the Earl of Stafford who had ruled Ireland with an iron fist 
  • Catholics and native Irish rebellions rebelled against the new English Protestants in Ireland 
  • 4000 protestants were massacred
  • This was encouraged by events in Scotland, when rebellions were against the King's religious reforms 
  • This increased the fear in London that Charles were part of a Catholic/Popish plot
  • Parliament demanded that they choose the king's ministers.
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The Five Members Coup

  • The failed arrest of 5 MPs on the 3rd January 1642
  • Charles suspected MPs of plotting against Henrietta Maria and accused his bishops of High Treason. 
  • Charles marched an army in to the House of Commons illegally, demanding the arrest of Pym, Hampden, Strode, Haselrige and Holles of the House of Commons. 
  • They had been tipped off and already left. 
  • Charles showed he was dangerous, irritated and at the same time highlighted weakeness by the fact he had failed what he had planned to do. 
  • This event increased support of many other MPs back to PYM, at a crucial time as he was losing support to Charles due to irrational behaviours such as the Grand Remonstrance 
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Charles Leaving London - Post the 5 members coup

  • Charles left London for the last time
  • This made a distinctive physical split between the two sides
  • It also ensured on of the Charle's underlying weakness in the civil war to come - the fact that Parliament held their position and maintained London. 
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The Militia Ordinance and The Commissions of Array

Militia Ordinance: 

  • Meant to be used for the king 
  • The Parliament used it to raise troops for their own army against the King
  • Parliamend ordred the appointment of officers to recruit militias.
  • The King responded with the Commissions of Array

The Commissions of Array: 

  • Charles asks for volunteers to fight for him
  • Out dated way of recruiting
  • Both methods were dubious and questioned in legality.
  • Charles had the upper hand as the Militia Ordinance was going directly against the orders of the King. 
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Comments

craig dingwall


Slide 3 - Canons imposed 1636, Prayer Book imposed 1637

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