British History (1517-1801)

  • Period: 1509 to 1547

    King Henry VIII's reign

    King Henry VIII created the Church of England and he paved the way for Protestantism.
  • 1517

    The Ninety-Five Theses

    The Ninety-Five Theses
    Martin Luther wrote The Ninety-Five Theses in 1517 because he was against the Indulgences.
  • 1526

    The Tyndale Bible

    The Tyndale Bible
    The New Testament is translated in English by Wiliam Tyndale in England in 1526.
  • 1534

    Act of Supremacy

    Act of Supremacy
    King Henry VIII abolished the authority of the Pope and was made by himself Supreme Head of the Church of England.
  • Period: 1536 to 1537

    The Pilgrimage of Grace

    The Pilgrimage of Grace is a rebellious movement in Lincolnshire and Yorkshire because they were against protestant changes, the dissolution of the Monastries and they wanted the restoration of the Pope and Mary Tudor as their Queen.
  • 1545

    The Book of Common Prayer

    The Book of Common Prayer
    The Book of Common Prayer was introduced by Edward VI in 1545, and Roman Catholic practices were eradicated including statues and stained glass.
  • Period: 1547 to 1553

    Edward VI's reign

    King Edward VI followed the path of his father King Henry XVIII and allowed Protestantism to grow even more.
  • Period: 1553 to 1558

    Mary I's reign

    Queen Mary I, the first Queen of England, repealed the Protestant Legislation of her father and half-brother. She restored Catholism and perscuted Protestants.
  • Period: 1555 to 1558

    Bloody Mary Massacres

    Under Mary I's reign over 200 protestans were burnt alive at the stake. And that's why she was called "Bloody Mary".
  • Period: 1558 to

    Elizabeth I's reign

    Queen Elizabeth I had to pacify religious divisions. And she introduced the Second Reformation which defined the Church of England.
  • 1559

    Act of Uniformity

    Act of Uniformity
    The Act of Uniformity was passed in 1559 under Elizabeth I's reign. Everyone had to use the Book of Common Prayer and all people who didn't attend an Anglican service were fined.
  • 1559

    Act of Supremacy

    Act of Supremacy
    Queen Elizabeth I restored the Act of Supremacy. She abolished, like her father, the authority of the Pope and she became Supreme Governor of the Church of England.
  • 1569

    The Nothern Rebellion

    The Nothern Rebellion
    A Rebellion led by the Earls Wesrmorland and Nortumberland in order to stop religious reforms made by Elizabeth I. They tried to replace her by Mary Stuart but they failed.
  • 1570

    The Papal Bull

    The Papal Bull
    Pope Pius VI issued the papal bull in which he excommunicated Queen Elizabeth I.
  • 1581

    The 1581 Act

    The 1581 Act
    Queen Elizabeth I introduced the 1581 Act. All people converted to Catholism were provided for the death penalty, it was also forbidden to participate the Catholic Mass. And Anglican services were compulsory: £20 per mouth fine.
  • Mary Stuart's execution

    Mary Stuart's execution
    Elizabeth I ordered the execution of Mary Stuart because she had proofs that Mary betrayed her. She was executed in 1587 in Fotheringham Castle and she was wearing a bright red dress to represent the colour of Catholic martyrs.
  • The Defeat of the Spanish Armada

    The Defeat of the Spanish Armada
    Spain attempted to invad England. However England was victorious thanks to its huge strategies.
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    James I's Reign

    James I was the son of Mary Queen of Scots. He became King of Scotland in 1567 and King of England in 1603. He believed in the divine rights of kings and he held Calvinist views. He didn't really have a good relationship with Parliament because of some financial problems.
  • The Gunpowder Plot

    The Gunpowder Plot
    The Gunpowder Plot was a plot to kill King James I and to blow up Parliament by a small group of Catholics in 1605. However the conspiracy failed.
  • Establishment of Jamestown in Virginia

    Establishment of Jamestown in Virginia
    As the first English colonies were formed in North America, Virginia was the first English permanent settlement and it was named after James I.
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    The Starving Time

    The Starving Time was a difficult period of starvation in Jamestown in Virginia and only 60 of the 500 colonists survived. It was caused by: shortage of drinkable water, insufficient growing of crops, and conflicts with the Native Powhatan tribe.
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    The Thirsty Years' War

    The Elector Palatine (James I's son-in-law) was invited to take the throne of protestant Bohemia in place of the Emperor Ferdinand Habsburg who was supported by Catholic Spain. So James I, as a protestant king, wanted to help his son-in-law however this was rather a war for his son Charles I since James I died in 1625.
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    Charles I's Reign

    Charles I was the son of King James I. Like his father he firmly believed in the divine right of Kings. He also interpreted criticism as a challenge to his authority. And he was an arminian which is a minority wing of Anglicans. Like his father he had some problems with Parliament which led to many crisis within the country.
  • Petition of Rights

    Petition of Rights
    Members of Parliament requested to King Charles I to recognise the illegality of extra-parliamentary taxation, billeting, martial law, and imprisonment with trail. They wanted to get Charles I to recognise that they were limits to his powers.
  • The Three Resolutions

    The Three Resolutions
    Members of Parliament declared that whoever tried to bring in "Poppery or Arminiasm" or to alter the protestant forms of the Church of England was an enemy of the Kingdom, as well as anyone advising the King to collect custom duties without Parliament's consent.
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    The Personal Rule

    During 11 years, King Charles I ruled without calling a parliament after the Three Resolutions in 1629. It was also called " The Eleven Years Tyranny".
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    The Scottish crisis

    When Charles I introduced the New Prayer Book in 1637 in Scotland, Scotland was very angry and they decided to create a rebellion against the King. It also led to the Bishops Wars.
  • The Militia Act

    During the Irish Rebellion it was necessary for England to raise an army. So Parliament passed the Militia Act in 1641, the army should be placed under the control of a general appointed by Parliament so it took away the King’s ability to appoint whoever he wanted.
  • The Grand Remonstrance

    The Grand Remonstrance
    The Grand Remonstrance was an important document voted by Parliament in 1641. This text summarized all the wrong doings of Charles I and concluded on “revolutionary” demands: the right of the House of commons to choose the King’s ministers, the right for Parliament to control any army sent to Ireland, and the right for Parliament to reform the Church. However this document was a little bit controversial and it separated Parliament into 2 groups: The Parliamentarians and The Royalists.
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    The Irish Rebellion

    James I had implemented a plantation policy sending English and Scottish protestant colonists to Ireland, taking the lands of Irish Catholics. However it didn't please the
    Irish Catholics who decided to rise up against Protestant
    settlers. It was a massacre of 3 000/4 000 protestants.
  • Charles I marched into the House of Commons

    Charles I marched into the House of Commons
    Charles I marched into the House of Commons with troops and attempted to arrest 5 members of Parliament. This moment proved that there could be no peace between King Charles I and Parliament. After that King Charles I feared for his life so he left London to flee to York.
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    The First English Civil War

    The First english civil war cost the lives of 190 000 Englishmen (in combat and from diseases) and last for four years. It was basically the Parliamentarians against the Royalists. However the Parliamentarians won because financially and in term of alliances and army they were better than the Royalists.
  • King Charles II formally declared war on Parliament

    Charles formally declared war on Parliament in 1642, and this led to the First Civil War.
  • The New Model Army seized King Charles I

    As the House of Common decided to disband the New Model Army (created by the Parliamentarians in 1644) without paying them, this provoked a mutiny and the new army decided to seize King Charles I who had surrendered himself to the Scots (who handed him to Parliament in 1646).
  • The Agreement of the People

    The New Model Army issued the Agreement of the People in November 1647 which basically said that there is no authority above Parliament.
  • The Pride’s Purge

    The Pride’s Purge
    The New Model Army wanted the King to be tried, however the members of Parliament who were conservative wanted to negotiate with the King. And Colonel Pride entered the House of Commons, stopped the vote and arrested the 45 conservative leaders of Parliament. And the King was put on trial for high treason.
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    The Second English Civil War

    In November 1647 Charles I escaped from army custody and allied himself with the Scots and it horrified Parliament that the King was using a foreign army to wage war on his own people. And so it led to the Second Civil War and unlike the first civil war, the second was short.
  • England become a Commonwealth

    The Monarchy and the House of Lords were abolished and England became a Commonwealth (a republic) in 1649 after King Charles I's execution.
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    The Interregnum

    England was declared a “Commonwealth” in 1649, it means that the people governed without a King. However it was a failure to reach stability and they created a military protectorate ruled by Cromwell. And so the Interregnum means between 2 reigns and between 2 kings.
  • King Charles I's execution

    King Charles I's execution
    King Charles I was executed on January 30, 1649.
  • The Instrument of Government

    The Instrument of Government
    The Instrument of Government was England’s first and only written constitution. In this constitution it is said that 460 members of Paliament had to be elected every 3 years and only men who owned £200 of personal property could vote. Besides there was a Council of State composed of 13 to 21 members who would serve for life.
  • End of the Commonwealth and start of the Protectorate

    On December 16th, 1653 it was the end of the Commonwealth and the start of the Protectorate (which was a Military Dictatorship ruled by Cromwell) in England.
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    The Cromwellian Protectorate

    England became a Protectorate ruled by Cromwell who was appointed "Lord Protector".
  • The Declaration of Breda

    The Declaration of Breda
    The Declaration of Breda was issued by Charles II (Charles I's son) after the end of the Protectorate where he promised many things: a general amnesty, to continue religious toleration, and to share power with Parliament. All this in return for the restoration of monarchy. And it worked, King Charles II was restored on May 29th, 1660. However as expected he didn't keep his promises.
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    The Early Restoration (1660-1671)

    King Charles II was restored on the English throne in 1660 however it was a little bit complicated. First he didn't keep his three promises: he killed the 100 people who had signed Charles I’s death warrant and he gave to himself discretionary powers that placed the monarch above the law of the land. Besides he was challenged by Plague in 1665 and by the Great Fire of London in 1666. All this created hostility towards Charles II and his court, he was named the "Merry Monarch".
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    King Charles II's Reign

  • The Popish Plot

    The Popish Plot
    There was a rumour of a plot organised by the French to murder Charles II and replace him by his Catholic brother James II. And it created fear in the kingdom because James as king could implement pro-Catholic politics and he might try to restore absolute monarchy.
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    The Exclusion crisis

    Parliament attempted to debar James II from the succession to the English throne, and so this means trying to modify the rules of succession. It didn't please Charles II who dissolved the Parliament.
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    King James II's Reign

  • The Glorious Revolution

    The Glorious Revolution
    In 1688, Parliament invited William of Orange (King James II’s son in law) to invade England and seize the crown. He landed with an army of 15 000 men and there was no resistance because people were supporting him (nobody wanted a Catholic king). James II's army was disintegrated and James II fled to France. And so William became King William III of England. It was called the Glorious Revolution because no blood was shed.
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    King William III's Reign

  • The Bill of Rights

    The Bill of Rights
    The Bill of Rights was an essential document of the uncodified British constitution presented by King William III and his wife Mary II in 1689. Many things were written in this text: lists King James II's misdeeds, fixed limitations on the sovereign’s powers, set out the rights of Parliament, and set out basic civil rights.
  • The Act of Settlement

    The Act of Settlement
    As King William III and Mary II had no surviving children and all the potential Stuart successors were Catholic, the 1701 Act of Settlement resolved the problem: it settled the order of succession and ensured a Protestant succession. The next successors to the throne where the Hanoverians who were descendants of James I. This text played an important role in the formation of the Kingdom of Great Britain.
  • The Act of Union between England and Scotland

    The Act of Union between England and Scotland
    Under Queen Anne (the last Stuart monarch) was passed the Act of Union between England and Scotland, they became a single kingdom realising the dream of James I. It was also the creation of the United Kingdom of Great Britain: England (and Wales) and Scotland.
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    King George I's Reign

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    King George II's Reign

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    King George III's Reign

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    The American War of Independence

    The American War of Independence was a turning point for the British Empire because they lost a huge part of its empire. In fact it marked the end of the “First British Empire”.
  • The Acts of Union

    The Acts of Union of 1801 created the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. It also merged the Parliament of Ireland into the Parliament of the UK.