Mid-Tudor rebellions essay

‘The rebellions which occurred during the reigns of Edward VI and Mary I were mainly political in origin.’
Assess the validity of this view. (45 marks)

Task – write an introduction to this essay question. Remember to focus on defining the issues and providing specific comment on the debate and argument in the question. Aim for between 7-10 sentences.

This has to be blogged before your next lesson (date set Monday 16 September 2013)

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23 Responses to Mid-Tudor rebellions essay

  1. hannahlinaker says:

    The rebellions during the Mid-Tudor period were highly motivated by political changes. Often these reasons stemmed from policies such as Somerset’s decision to debase the coinage, causing inflation. However, there were also other significant reasons for the rebellions, such as religion. This was because the religion of England changed multiple times in a relatively short period of time. Social issues can also be blamed, such as the opposition to enclosure, especially with Kett’s rebellion. Yet overall, the most significant catalyst leading to the Mid-Tudor rebellions was the political instability.

  2. Ruby Steer says:

    During the reigns of Edward VI and Mary I there were three substantial rebellions and further small risings. The main rebellions which were Ketts and Western in 1549 and Wyatt’s in 1554, are of intrinsic interest to historians because politics seems to be the over arching cause. However it is also recognised by some historians that there were other issues in Mid Tudor England. Examples of this are religious uncertainty following Henry VIII’s reign and the concerning decline in the cloth trade in Kent in 1554. These issues certainly contributed to “simmering discontent” (Loades) which was ever-present in England during the Mid Tudor years. This essay will explore whether the rebellions were mainly political in origin, or whether factors such as religious instability and economic panic played a bigger part.

  3. Lucy Simmonds says:

    The rebellions of the ‘Mid-Tudor crisis’ were caused by political unsuitability as a direct result of Somerset and Northumberland’s policies. The rebellions were also an aftermath of religious policies taking their unnecessary toll on the country, such as the conversion. The rebellions, although predominantly politically centred; other factors contributed to the rises, such as the Western rebellion, which was due to ‘economic discontent’ (Fletcher). The economy was in ruins due to foreign policy attempts and Henry VIII’s lust for glory several years before hand, leaving the country hanging by a thread as far as foreign powers are concerned. Mary’s reign was the only one with with a ‘successful’ rebellion since Perkin Warbeck which made Henry VII paranoid about his royal authority. The rebellions in the reigns of Edward VI and Mary I were instigated as a part of an anti-politics/economy coup, and created instability to England.

  4. The Merrittinator (Charles Merritt) says:

    During the Mid-Tudor period, 1547 to 1558, there were three key uprisings; the Kett Rebellion, the Western Rebellion, and the Wyatt Rebellion. Although it could be argued that these were mainly political, it would be foolish to ignore other factors such as social-economic and religious changes. The Mid-Tudor period certainly went through major religious changes from the Anglo-Catholicism of Henry’s era to the more Protestant approach during Edward’s reign and then back to pure Catholicism under Mary’s reign, thus prompting dispute against the changes. However, the political motives for power in England were mostly the underlying motives for these rebellions.

  5. Jake Dalby says:

    During the reigns of Edward VI and Mary I there was three major rebellions, these were the Kett and western rebellion in Edwards reign and the Wyatt rebellion in Marys reign. Along with these there were also several other disturbances including the succession crisis in 1553. It is clear that political reasons were a main cause of the rebellions especially when the country was been governed by someone as arrogant as Somerset. But it is also clear that other factors such as religion or England’s economic status contributed in some form in causing the rebellions if not been the soul cause themselves.

  6. Megan Foster says:

    Throughout the reigns of Mary I and Edward VI there were three rebellions which helped to overthrow Lord Protector Somerset. These Mid-Tudor rebellions are seen as politically motvated, as shown in the Wyatts rebellion of 1553 where the rebels did not want Mary to marry Philip who was seen as a foreigner. Be that as it may, the rebellions also had religious and socio-economic causes. The Western rebellion was mostly religious as it was caused by disputes over the new common prayer book which had little effect on politics. In contrast, the Ketts rebellion was caused as a result of enclosure in Kent. Overall, there were political issues but the rebellions were predominantly due to religious and socio-economic problems.

  7. Bethan Griffiths says:

    The ‘Mid Tudor Crisis’ was a period of political instability, partially named so due to the rebellions which occurred during the reign of Edward IV and Mary I. There were three main rebellions during these reigns, The Kett’s Rebellion in 1549, the Western Rebellion in 1549 and the Wyatt’s Rebellion in 1554. There has been much historical debate as to whether the predominant cause of these rebellions was social, economic or political, however it seems that the most significant of these were the political factors.

  8. jlittlechild says:

    The rebellions during the Mid-Tudor period were fuelled heavily through political instability within England. Resent for Somerset’s policies such as the debasement of coinage led the country into unrest. However, other factors have to be considered. Religion acted as a Pendulum, changing from Protestant to Catholic multiple times. Social factors should also be considered. The opposition to enclosure sparked the beginning of the Kett’s rebellion of 1549. Despite this, it is clear that the reason for rebellion in Edward VI and Mary I reigns were mainly political in origin.

  9. Shannon Pinder says:

    The three main rebellions during the reigns of Mary I and Edward VI were heavily influenced by the political instability of England. For example Mary’s marriage to Philip of Spain which generated a xenophobic attitude across England. However, it should also be considered that other factors such as religion also sparked the uprisings. The constant change from Catholicism to Protestantism created dispute which solidly led to The Western Rebellion in 1549. Furthermore, socio-economic factors such as the opposition to enclosure also contributed to the rebellions, in particular Kett’s in 1549. Despite this, it is clear that the most significant cause of the rebellions during Mary I and Edward VI’s reigns were from a political origin.

  10. Joe Ellerker says:

    During the reigns of Edward VI and Mary I the Ketts, Western and Wyatt rebellions caused much unrest in England. There is no doubt that these rebellions were to some extent politically motivated, as Somerset’s policies were unfavourable to the nobility, which in itself provoked class antagonism. However Religious instability should also be considered due to a Catholic and Protestant divide, which became clearer leading up to the western rebellion, and the introduction of the act of uniformity. Also social-economical factors sparked controversy due to Somerset’s handling of enclosure leading to small scale riots. Although religious changes and social factors are significant, the reasons for the rebellions were mostly political in origin.

  11. Kerry Fletcher says:

    There were many political changes throughout the years, especially the changes in religion from each monarch (protestant to catholic). It could be argued that each rebellion had a clear motive, for example the Ketts rebellion was mainly due to social reasons like enclosure which is why 16,000 rebels rebelled. In comparison to the Western Rebellion, where 7,000 rebels rebelled due to religion reasons like the introduction of the new prayer book. Where as the Wyatts rebellion was mainly due to political changes, like the foreign marriage between Mary and Phillip which is why 1,500 rebels rebelled. From this you can see that main reasons for why the rebellions began were because of political, religion, social and economic reasons. It can be clearly argued that political instability was the main reasons for why the rebels began.

  12. Ellie Smith says:

    The rebellions during Mary I reign and Edward VI were mainly motivated by political instability due to the change in monarchs and their policies, however there were other factors which contributed to the rebellions. Religion was a significant factor which led to division in the country, the change from Catholicism to Protestantism caused a lot of problems which resulted in citizens becoming angry and upset due to the changes, as well as this socio-economic factors played a part in the rebellions as the issues with enclosure were a target for labourers to rebel. Although all these factors together contributed to the rebellions political issues were the most significant for them occurring as they played more of a key role in causing issues for a wider and larger range of people.

  13. Emma Marlein says:

    During the years of Edward VI and Mary I reigns between 1547 and 1558 there were three main rebellions which caused instability in England. These rebellions were the Kett, Western and Wyatt rebellion. It can be argued to some extent that these rebellions were caused by political motives due to the changes in monarch and Lord Protector’s unfavourable policies which were aimed against the monarchy. However there were also other factors that contributed to the Mid-Tudor rebellions. These factors include religious motives due to the change from Protestantism to Catholicism arising and this caused many English citizens to become frustrated which led them to rebel. Another factor can also be socio-economic instability due to enclosure which again led to people becoming angry and rebelling. Although other factors like religion and socio-economic are important, the main reason for the rebellions were down to political motives.

  14. Jordan Green says:

    The rebellions during the reigns of Edward VI and Mary I where the consequences of a cocktail of factors. In particular the Kett rebellion was the result of socio-economic problems such as the coinage debasement which had caused an inflation that put economic pressure on everyone, but especially peasants like Kett himself. Also, to use the term of Andy Wood, ‘class antagonism’ was also a factor. Enclosure meant that landowners had a dictorial grip over their tennants and the gentry’s use of fould course simply fanned the flames of the rebels’ outrage. However, the smaller, Western rebellion of 7,000, which preceded Kett’s had more religious motivations. As the rebels demands in this case were nothing less than the restoration of the Henrician Six Articles, the council saw the rebellion as religious in origin. Though again socio-economic factors were also evident as the rebels demanded the remitting of sheep tax. On this basis it seems evident that of all the factors in both rebellions socio-economic driveswere the most prevalent.

  15. Jack Rowson says:

    Throughout the reigns of Edward VI and Mary I, the Kett, Wyatt and Western rebellion sparked much civil unrest in England. There is no questioning the fact that all these rebellions to some extent had some political motive. With sommersets policies, and the lack of a clear political structure, all three rebellions emerged as a result of a divide in political opinions. However the religious instability within England was a key factor, divided between Catholicism and Protestantism. Religion became a clear motive for the Western rebellion, for example with the introduction of the Act of Uniformity causing much unrest. Also social-economic factors had a small influence as class division was at the heart of all rebellions. Even though religious and socio-economic factors were significant, the reasons for the rebellions, were mainly of political origin

  16. Lucy Norton says:

    During the reigns of Edward VI and Mary I there were a number of major uprisings; Ketts, Western, and Wyatt’s of which were motivated by political instability due to the change of protectors, monarchs, and policies. Religion was also a significant factor due to the isolation of the south west, the heart of each rebellion and the frequent change of religious policy, as well as socio-economic issues due to the debasement of coinage causing inflation. Although each of these factors contributed to each rebellion political issues were the most significant as they had a larger impact, where as other issues simply fuelled the uprisings.

  17. Katie Nadine C. says:

    From 1547 – 1558 the rebellions which consumed the reigns of the two most politically unstable monarchs in the Tudor era are undoubtedly political in origin where all three have additional underpinning causes such as religious, ideological and social/economic factors. Wyatt’s rebellion (1554) for example, contested the dynastic marriage between Phillip II of Spain and Mary I which saw a revolt based on considerable political discontent where religious objectives functioned as a secondary component. Kett’s rebellion (1549) can be extensively understood as an uprising based purely on socio-economic grievances; however it may be considered that Kett’s rebellion featured an attack on the over–zealous aristocracy rather than simple dissent towards Somerset’s policy of enclosure. The Western Rebellion (1549) or ‘Prayer-Book Rebellion’ was unquestionably a result of the English reformation following the introduction of the ‘Book of Common Prayer’, coupled with the rise of inflation and a growing population , the Western Rebellion sought to re-establish the Henrician ‘Six Articles’ in addition to undermining the autocratic rule of Lord Somerset. Overall, the rebellions of 1547 – 1558 featured vast political disputes as either the most dominant or the underlying cause.

  18. Oliver Harrison says:

    Under the reign of both Edward VI and Mary I, England saw protest towards the monarchy in the form of the Kett’s, Western and Wyatt rebellions. A possible cause of these rebellions is the religious instability England encountered at this time due to the Catholic and Protestant divide. It is also clear that there was political motivation behind the rebellions due to Mary’s plans to marry Phillip of Spain, which generated fear that the government would be taken over by Spain’s new influence through the marriage. Also, with issues such as Somerset’s policy on enclosure, social-economic factors provided a reason for the rebellions. Despite the role religious and social-economic issues had on the rebellions, it is most likely that the main cause is politically based.

  19. Hoss Runter says:

    The rebellions during Edward VI and Mary I’s were largely politically motivated, however they stimulated from a variety of political, religious, socio-economic events. The Kett (1549) Western (1549) and Wyatt (1554) rebellions were all directed towards the monarchy due to antaganism in one of these areas, beit the indefinate policies of Somerset, such as the 1547 Chantries Act or the contraversy of Mary, throught her marrage to Philip II. However, due to the regional origins of each rebellion, and the fact that each were organised by sub-noble class leaders, personal interest cannot be discounted as a defining factor. Therefore, the origins of rebellion lies in the political inexperience of the monarchy, which was utilised by regional leaders to satisfy their own ends.

  20. Emily Howe says:

    The rebellions, Ket, Western and Wyatt, which occurred during the reigns of Edward VI and Mary I had strong a political motivation behind them; the announcement of Mary’s marriage treaty with Phillip of Spain had the public worried that their interest would be overlooked. However economic and religious causes played an important role in the rebellions. With the Ket rebellion (1549) economic issues such as the problems with enclosures and high rent were a driving force for them. Whereas withy he Western rebellion religious reasons were a main factor, the worry of returning to Catholicism, the New Prayer Book and the Act of Uniformity.

  21. Daniel Fletcher says:

    During Edward VI and Mary’s reigns there were 3 major rebellions: Kett’s, the Western and Wyatt’s rebellion. The primary cause for all these rebellions was of a political origin and a strong resentment towards the government’s polices. The Kett’s and Western rebellions were sparked due to the predominant hatred against Somerset’s reign. Especially against enclosure combined with Somerset’s personal constant struggle against the Scottish, where he continually employed debasement and ignored the countries true needs. The Wyatt’s rebellion escalated due to some of Mary’s misjudged polices such as her intentness to marry Philip of Spain, and that she did not understand that her popularity came from a disliking of Northumberland. The unpopular political choices by Somerset and Mary angered a nation that was already troubled due to economic unrest.

  22. G Furneezey says:

    During the reign of Edward VI and Mary I, there were a series of rebellions within Tudor England, these include, the Western Rebellion, the Kett rebellion, and the Wyatt rebellion, these three could easily be summed to up entirely politically motivated, due to the main causes thought to have caused these rebellions; these causes would include Somerset’s’ debasing policy which helped fuel the war in Scotland, while making farmers and peasants suffer due to the inflation. However to limit the causes to politics would be unwise, with things such as Religious issues also causing conflict within England, this was between the protestant and Catholic church, with New acts of uniformity being enforced, places such as Cornwall were the first to react; killing William Body, a protestant.; thus leading to further dispute in the Western rebellion. Further causes include the socio-economic issues, with enclosure causing peasants to roam rural England, destroying enclosed farmland. While both religious and socio-economic policies played large roles in the Key rebellions, Politics plays the largest role.

  23. olivia says:

    The Ketts, Western and Wyatt rebellion were largely caused by political instability during the reigns of Edward VI and Mary I. During Edwards reign many people didnt agree with Somerset and his policys. This may have been one of the strongest causes of the Ketts and Western rebellions. It can also be suggested that the Wyatts rebellion was stoked by Marys marriage to Philip this made many people feel insecure about what would happen to their jobs and the country on a whole. However there are other factors which contributed such as changes in religion and economic problems such as the problem of Debasement and the governments reliance on it to pay for things and the changes made in religion from Catholicism to Protestantism in Edwards reign and the return of Catholicism in Marys reign. Whilst both of these factors are key and played a large part in causing the uprisings they were not the most significant. The most significant was political issues and policies.

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