The failure to compromise, 1640 - 49



Division and the drift towards civil war

  • 1640 - MPs hated the abuses of Charle' Personal Rule 
  • They agreed to abolish Ship Money and passed a Triennal Act 
  • Triennal Act: the monarch would have to call parliament at least every three years. Therefore he couldnt have another extended personal rule. 
  • However, divisions among MPs occured. 

Reasons for divisions:

1. Root and Branch Petition ( December 1640 ) 

  • Petition from 15,000 London Puritians, supported by radical MP John Pym 
  • Wanted Bishops removed from the church. 
  • Conservatives viewed this as a threat to established order. 

2. Bill of Attainder (May 1641) 

  • Used in parliament by Pym to justify the execution of Thomas Wentworth, Earl of Stafford. (Charles' principal minister) 
  • The Bill needed less evidence to convict someone is they were viewed as a threat to the state. 
  • Conservatives worried that this was bending the law in a way that would cause just a big as a threat to the constituion as Charles' actions did. 

3. Militia Bill ( November 1641 ) 

  • Proposed that parliament should control any army used to crush the Irish Rebellion (began October 1641) 
  • Conservatives saw this as a threat to the most important royal prerogative…


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