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CHAPTER 21: ENGLISH AND AMERICAN REVOLUTIONS Class Notes: Chapter 21 /Section 1: Civil War Causes of the English Civil War Elizabeth I was a just leader who died in 1603, leaving no heir. Her rule teased Parliament with some power and when she died, the House of Commons vowed to gain more power. James I, a member of the Stuart family gained the throne in 1603. He agreed with the Divine Right of Kings or the fact that the king got his right to rule from God. Parliament had James in a difficult situation in that they controlled the money raised from taxes. As he asked for more and more, Parliament denied him. He began to sell titles of nobility to raise money. In addition to disliking the king for his spending habits, the Parliament also disliked his religious beliefs. Many of the members of Parliament were Puritans who wanted to “purify” the Church of England from all effects of Catholicism. James was not of the same mindset. James I died in 1625 and his son, Charles I inherits the throne. The conflicts that Charles has with Parliament were similar to his father. In fact, he tried to dissolve the organization and raise money by getting the nobles to “loan” the govt. money. He also forced the people to billet the troops that made them even angrier. Charles finally calls Parliament back into session in 1628. The Petition of Right is passed by Parliament that stated: 1. The king cannot collect taxes for force loans without Parliament’s consent. 2. The king could not imprison anyone without just cause 3. Troops could not be housed against the will of the house’s owner. 4. The king could not declare martial law unless the country was at war. The king ignored the Petition of Right and disbanded the Parliament and vowed never to reinstate them. During this time the King named William Laud as the Arch bishop of Canterbury and persecuted the Puritans, burning their writings and denying their right to preach in public. Many of them left for the American Colonies. This was called The Great Migration and lasted from 1630 to 1643. At which time, as the Scots had invaded England, the King reconvened Parliament. Parliament still refused to grant the king’s wishes and the king disbanded them again. They were known as the Short Parliament, being in session only three weeks. The country was so in need of money the king had to recall Parliament. This time it was known as the Long Parliament and lasted 20 years. The Puritans were so mad at the king they were going to take his power any way possible. They tried, as did Charles and the situation eventually lead to Civil War. The two sides were the Cavaliers or supporters of the king from the North and West versus the Roundheads from the South and East who were supporters of the Parliament. The war went on for 4 years and the Roundheads; lead by Oliver Cromwell eventually won and the Parliament took over control of the Government. The Government was run by the Parliament and the King was executed. Cromwell took over until his death in 1658 when his son took over for only one year. After some time, the Long Parliament was recalled and they, in turn, put Charles I’s son on the throne. This was a different throne than the one previously. Gone was the absolute leader and individual rights rules. Class Notes: Chapter 21/ Section 2: A King Returns to the throne After wandering the various countries of Europe, sometimes received as a hero, sometimes as an outlaw, Charles II was reinstated as the king of England and was more responsive to the population than his father had been. He returned to England in 1660 and restored the House of Stuart to control of England. This period of time is known as the Restoration. The King allowed the Parliament to settle the religious differences of the country. The elections of 1661 elected a Cavalier Parliament that was characterized by many loyalists to the king. They passed the Clarendon Code that made the Church of England the official Church of England and forbade anyone but Anglicans or members of the Church of England, from attending universities, serving in Parliament. This Parliament also limited the power of the King. The king was in power within the Constitution (Constitutional Monarchy) and never fought the Parliament, remembering his father’s fate. As a result of the lack of an heir to King Charles and the rise of his Catholic brother James, the Parliament tried to pass the Exclusion Bill in 1679. This would have kept James from becoming King. As a result of this bill, the Parliament became divided between the Whigs who wanted to exclude James from the throne and the Tories who defended the right of James to the throne. The compromise between the two sides saw the Tories defeat the Exclusion Bill but accepting the principal of habeas corpus which made it illegal for the king or anyone else to hold anyone without just cause or without trial, thereby increasing the rights of the individual and decreasing the rights of the king. James became King and proceeded to do the same thing that his father did which was to fight with the Parliament. He converted to Catholicism and instituted many Catholic into the government and demanded Absolute Power. The members of Parliament were concerned but thought the best course of action would be to wait until James II died as his Protestant daughter, Mary would take the throne. Her Husband was William of Orange who was the ruler of the Netherlands. When James II’s second wife had a boy, James announced the boy would be raised Catholic. Parliament put aside their differences and at this time encourages William of Orange to attack England. James II had little to no support and fled allowing William and Mary to take control of the throne with little effort. This was called the Glorious Revolution. This new rule of William and Mary was different than other rulers. They were willing to allow Parliament to rule the country and would enforce any rules that Parliament passed. The Bill of Rights was modified from its original form (four parts) and added the individual even more rights. Trial by Jury, outlawed cruel and unusual punishment, limitation on the amount of bail, the ability to appeal to the king by ordinary citizens was guaranteed by the new and improved Bill of Right. After James II tried one more time to take the throne, Parliament passed the Act of Settlement that banned Catholics from ever taking the Throne and the Catholics of Ireland were forbidden from governing themselves. These changes in Government made one thing sure, that the King could not rule without the consent of the Parliament. The concept of democracy is raised here. The Parliament is a place that was run by the rich. You had to be a landowner to vote and this was only 4% of the population. The power of Parliament also increased when Mary’s sister Anne took the throne from William in 1702. There was concern that she would pass away and leave the throne of England to someone who was not English. To avoid this, Parliament passed the Act of Union (1707) that brought together Scotland and England into Great Britain in an effort to make a stronger country. Anne’s reign saw an increase in the control of Parliament until she died in 1714. When she died, the child of James I’s granddaughter took the throne. His name was George I who was born and raised in Germany. The way he was able to rule was by appointing a Prime Minister by the name of Robert Walpole who advised him and who ran much of the political affairs. George II succeeds him in 1727. By 1760, the throne is under George III the grandson of George I who greatly expands the empire of Great Britain. Most of the holdings of France fall to the British through war. The expense of this war causes the American Revolution as George attempts to pay for the war with Colonial money. Class Notes: Chapter 21/ Section 3: Road to Revolt America was ripe for revolt for the following reasons: 1. The colonists shared a common language and political background. 2. Many of the radical political ideas had died in Great Britain but remained alive in America. 3. There was no aristocracy and the hardships of life in the frontier blurred class distinctions. 4. Each colony had a representative assembly and they were used to governing themselves. Britain attempted to keep control of the booming trade in the Colonies. Navigation Acts in the 1600’s, the British regulated trade both to and from the Colonies. By passing the Colonies are by definition: a Crown appointed governor who would in turn appoint judges and other officials governed the colonies. Each colony also had an elected assembly that was populated by male landowners, just as in England. Only in America more men owned land. The assembly also had the right to approve taxes requested by the crown or the Governor. The rivalry for land in America between France and Britain led to the French and Indian War in 1754 that ended in a British victory in 1760. France gave up land west of the Appalachian Mountains and Canada. In an effort to keep control, George Grenville, appointed by George III as lord of the Treasury, closed the land to colonist settlement. The Crown also began to pay for the defense of the land recently gained from France through a number of different laws: The Sugar Act to raise money. Molasses. The Stamp Act was the major problem that the Colonists had with the Crown. Every piece of printed material had been stamped to prove the tax had been paid. The colonists refused to purchase any British stamped goods, arguing that they could not be taxed without representation in the British Parliament. The Stamp act was repealed but the movement toward self-control had begun in the colonies. The Declaratory Act of 1766 taxed a variety of items coming into America among which was tea. In 1770 the first of the clashes between colonists and tax collecting British came in Boston. Five died in the Boston Massacre. In an effort to keep the peace, the British took the tax on all but the tea, which resulted in the Boston Tea Party. As a result of this the British passed the Intolerable Acts that required the colonists to pay for the tea, closing the harbor until they did. Class Notes: Chapter 21/ Section 4: A War for Independence The First Continental Congress met in 1774 in Philadelphia and decided that they could make laws and govern themselves instead of working through the Crown. They declare a boycott of British goods and as a result and troops began to assemble in each colony. The first shots are fired at Lexington and Concord-April 19th, 1775. Americans are attempting to gather weapons and ammunition. The British attempt to seize the arms and these once loyal colonist “patriots” resisted and routed them and solidified the Revolutionary War. The Second Continental Congress meets and names George Washington as the commander-inchief of the Continental Army. January 1776- Thomas Paine’s Common Sense came. The people were galvanized. On the Second of July Congress voted to declare independence. On the Fourth of July adopted the Declaration of Independence that was written by Thomas Jefferson. This assured the Colonists that they were going to war and if they lost would be prosecuted as traitors. Benjamin Franklin, “We must all hang together now, or assuredly we shall hang separately.” Fighting the war, the two sides were mismatched: British Well Led Well-trained Well equipped Assisted by 30,000 German mercenaries BUT: Had to wait for supplies and reinforcements To cross the Atlantic Americans Well led by George Washington little battle experience identified by colored ribbon (no uniforms) Assisted by the French arms/ammunition used surprise tactics to avoid large scale conflict The British plan was to divide the Americans in New England from those colonies in the southern part of the country. Most of the early fighting occurred in New Jersey and New York states. And many were British victories. The Americans managed to turn the tide of Battle at Saratoga in New York. The American captured 6,000 British soldiers in 1777. This convinced the French to enter the war against the British. In 1779 Spain declared war on Britain and both Spain and France sent their navies to fight the British in the West Indies. The Netherlands joined the war in 1780 against Britain. By October 1781, the British had been defeated. General Washington accepted the surrender from Lord Charles Cornwallis at Yorktown, Virginia. The end of the Revolutionary War and the recognition of the United States by Britain, forced the need for a system of government in the new nation. The states formed a confederation of states. This was in part because each did not want to give up their power to a central authority, as this had been the way England had worked. A confederation was a league of Independent States held together under an agreement called the Articles of Confederation. This confederation was a weak bond between states and presented several problems. How would national debts be paid? Taxes could not be collected by the central government and as a result debts could not be paid and armies were not funded. States could not be regulated economically. This caused them to compete against each other. As a result of these and other problems, the confederation called a meeting to adopt a new system of government. A Constitutional Convention was called in 1788 and a system of federal government was approved which divided the power between the federal and the local (state) governments. Jefferson followed Montesquieu The Spirit of the Laws (1748) as the power was divided among three branches and a system of checks and balances were approved also. The United States was declared a republic and in 1789, George Washington was elected its first president. On of Congress’ first actions was to add the bill of rights, which guaranteed individual rights and well as the rights of the states which made up the nation.
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