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The Early Modern Period - from 1534 to 1801

By Aouzgul
  • Period: 1509 to 1547

    Reign of Henry VIII

    Henry VIII is famous for multiple marriages and the split from the Catholic Church, establishing the Church of England for a male heir. He was a strong monarch, centralizing power by dissolving monasteries, expanding territory, and engaging in European diplomacy, reshaping English history.
  • 1517

    Luther's Ninety Five Theses

    Luther's Ninety Five Theses
    Martin Luther's 95 Theses were posted in 1517, critiquing Catholic Church practices, leading to the Protestant Reformation and changing the course of Western Christianity.
  • 1526

    Tyndale's Bible

    Tyndale's Bible
    Tyndale's Bible, first published in 1526, revolutionized religious accessibility and language development, laying the groundwork for future English Bible translations and the Protestant Reformation.
  • 1534

    Act of Supremacy

    Act of Supremacy
    The Act of Supremacy of 1534 was an English law that declared King Henry VIII the supreme head of the Church of England, breaking ties with the Catholic Church and establishing the Church of England. This act had a profound impact, leading to the English Reformation, religious separation from the Pope, and significant political and religious changes in England.
  • 1534

    Separation of The Church of England and the Roman Catholic Church

    Separation of The Church of England and the Roman Catholic Church
    The separation of the Church of England from the Roman Catholic Church occurred in 1534 when King Henry VIII's Act of Supremacy established him as the head of the Church of England. This separation, driven by political and personal motives, had profound religious and political consequences, leading to the English Reformation and the formation of the Anglican Church.
  • Period: 1534 to

    Early Modern Period

  • Period: 1536 to 1537

    Pilgrimage of Grace

    The Pilgrimage of Grace was a series of uprisings in Northern England in 1536-1537, protesting Henry VIII's religious changes and demanding the restoration of Catholic practices. It reflected resistance to the English Reformation and led to government crackdowns and widespread consequences for the rebels.
  • Period: 1547 to 1553

    Reign of Edward VI

    Edward VI was the King of England from 1547 to 1553, known for his brief but impactful reign during the English Reformation, which saw England become more firmly Protestant under his rule. He introduced the Book of Common Prayers. His reign ended prematurely with his death at the age of 15.
  • 1549

    Book of Common Prayers

    Book of Common Prayers
    The Book of Common Prayer, introduced in 1549 during Edward VI's reign in England, became a key part of Anglican worship, offering a standard format for religious services and influencing the English Reformation.
  • Period: 1553 to 1558

    Reign of Mary I

    Mary I, England's first Queen regnant, reigned briefly at 37, swiftly restoring Catholicism in 18 months by repealing Protestant laws. She's known as "Bloody Mary" for persecuting and executing over 200 Protestants. Her marriage to Catholic Philip II of Spain, an unpopular alliance, led to the loss of Calais. Her death in 1558 was welcomed, as she had turned the nation against her, including her husband. Protestants fled the country, becoming "Marians exiles."
  • Period: 1558 to

    Reign of Elizabeth I

    Elizabeth I, an unmarried queen at 25, stabilized the Church of England with the "religious settlement" and expanded England's global influence in her impressive 45-year reign. Her rule, marked by independence, is considered a Golden Age. Her Anglican compromise faced opposition from Puritans and Catholics. Repression of Catholics escalated with the 1581 Act imposing the death penalty for conversion. Elizabeth I's reign is celebrated for its exceptional impact.
  • 1570

    Excommunication of Elizabeth I by Pope Pius V

    Excommunication of Elizabeth I by Pope Pius V
    Pope Pius V excommunicated Queen Elizabeth I of England in 1570, effectively severing her from the Roman Catholic Church due to her Protestant beliefs and her refusal to acknowledge the Pope's authority. This move heightened the religious tensions during the Elizabethan era.
  • Execution of Mary Queen of Scots

    Execution of Mary Queen of Scots
    Mary Queen of Scots, a legitimate heir with ties to France and Spain, threatened Elizabeth I. Elizabeth endured 19 years of Catholic plots to replace her with Mary. After the Babington Plot in 1586, Mary was convicted for conspiring to assassinate Elizabeth. She was executed in 1587, wearing a red dress symbolizing Catholic martyrs, eliminating a Catholic figurehead but risking international conflict and setting a regicidal precedent.
  • Defeat of the Spanish Armada

    Defeat of the Spanish Armada
    The defeat of the Spanish Armada in 1588 was a pivotal victory for England. England had a material advantage, boasting a modern fleet of 800 ships and using innovative strategies like the Dutch incendiary ship tactic. They also had a human advantage. This triumph had significant ideological effects, strengthening Elizabeth's legitimacy, fostering national cohesion, emphasizing England's insularity, and reinforcing the belief in divine protection.
  • Millenary Petition

    Millenary Petition
    In 1603, the Puritans gave King James I the Millenary Petition, asking to make the Church of England more pure by getting rid of Catholic traditions. It had signatures from a thousand ministers. Even though the Puritans thought James, being from Scotland, might be sympathetic, he said no and kept things the way they were.
  • Period: to

    Reign of James I

    James I (1603-1625), son of Mary, Queen of Scots, a catholic, faced religious conflicts and financial, and parliamentary struggles. Despite asserting divine right, tensions persisted. His reign saw the King James Bible's creation in 1611, a literary and religious landmark. Involvement in the Thirty Years' War and attempts to align with Protestants and Catholics strained relations. His legacy set the stage for the English Civil War under Charles I.
  • The Gunpowder Plot

    The Gunpowder Plot
    The Gunpowder Plot of 1605 was a failed Catholic conspiracy against King James I and the English Parliament. Orchestrated by a small group, the plot aimed to blow up the House of Lords during the State Opening of Parliament on November 5th, with the goal of assassinating James I.The plot's failure resulted in the arrest, torture, and execution of the conspirators notably Guy Fawkes, whose capture is commemorated on November 5th (he was discovered in the cellar with barrels of gunpowder).
  • Jamestown established

    Jamestown established
    Jamestown, the first permanent English settlement in North America, was established in Virginia. Named after James I, it faced the Starving Time (1609-1610) when only 60 of the 500 colonists survived due to factors like water shortages and conflicts with the Powhatan tribe. The discovery of tobacco by John Rolfe in 1614 helped Jamestown's economic success.
  • The Great Contract

    The Great Contract
    James I's "Great Contract" aimed at resolving financial issues. The proposal involved Parliament granting the king a fixed sum, but fears arose that this could lead to royal financial independence, bypassing the need for future parliamentary approval. The House of Commons rejected the contract, and James I, frustrated by Parliament's resistance, ultimately dismissed it. This rejection contributed to the crown's increasing debt, a significant factor in the challenges faced during James I's reign.
  • the King James' Bible

    the King James' Bible
    Commissioned by James I, the King James Bible, completed in 1611, stands as a landmark in English literature. The Millenary Petition of 1603, presented by Puritans, influenced James to authorize the translation, seeking to address their concerns and promote religious unity. The impact of the King James Bible is profound, shaping language and culture, and its translation altered the landscape of religious texts, becoming a pivotal work in Christianity.
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    The Thirty Years' War

    The Thirty Years' War was a conflict sparked by religious and political tensions. James I's involvement in seeking Protestant alliances, symbolized by his daughter's marriage to the Elector Palatine, contributed to the war's origins. Despite his attempt to secure parliamentary support in 1621, Parliament favored naval warfare. James's death in 1625 made Charles I King, his reign intensified conflicts. Financial strains, distrust in Charles's rule, and tensions with Parliament impacted history.
  • Arrival of First African Slaves

    Arrival of First African Slaves
    The arrival of the first African slaves in Jamestown marked the beginning of institutionalized slavery in English colonies. This event laid the foundation for the transatlantic slave trade, which became a crucial part of the colonial economy, especially in the Southern colonies.
  • Petition of Rights

    Petition of Rights
    Facing Charles I's demands and distrust in Buckingham, his advisor. Parliament's petition sought redress for abuses, aiming to curb arbitrary taxation, prevent unjust imprisonment, and address martial law grievances. Though Charles signed, he dissolved Parliament, highlighting the ongoing monarchy-Parliament struggle over authority limits.
  • The 3 Resolutions

    The 3 Resolutions
    Growing suspicions of Charles I's support for Arminians and his Parliament stance led MPs to resist adjournment (complaints were pronounced in January 1629 when Charles adjourned the Parliaments without notice). They passed three resolutions against "popery or Arminianism," altering Church forms, and unauthorized duty collection. This defiance marked a turning point, leading to the "Personal Rule" as Charles imprisoned MPs, dissolved Parliament, and declared no future sessions.
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    The Personal Rule of Charles I

    During the 11-year Personal Rule, or "the Eleven Years Tyranny," Charles I ruled without Parliament. Laud's Arminian policies, emphasizing sacraments and Catholic practices, fueled discontent. The Scottish Crisis (1637-1640) erupted over the New Prayer Book, leading to rebellion and Bishops' Wars. Charles convened the Short Parliament in 1640 but swiftly dissolved it. The Scottish invasion forced him to summon the Long Parliament, ending the extended rule.
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    The Scottish Crisis

    The Scottish Crisis began when Charles I's changes to the Church of Scotland triggered the Bishops' Wars. The New Prayer Book in 1637 led to rebellion and "The Scottish National Covenant" in 1638 removed bishops, escalating tensions. In 1640, after 11 years, Charles called the Short Parliament, but it dissolved swiftly. The Scots invaded, winning the Bishops' Wars, forcing Charles to summon the Long Parliament in 1640, concluding the 11-year Personal Rule.
  • The Short Parliament

    The Short Parliament
    The Short Parliament, convened by Charles I after 11 years without one, lasted only three weeks. MPs demanded the King address grievances before granting funds to deal with the Scottish crisis. Charles dissolved it in May 1640, leading to the Bishops' Wars.
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    The Long Parliament

    The Long Parliament, summoned by Charles I lasted for 20 years. It was initiated due to financial needs arising from the Scottish crisis. The Parliament addressed grievances against the King's policies, leading to pivotal events such as the Grand Remonstrance and the outbreak of the English Civil War in 1642.
  • The Irish Rebellion

    The Irish Rebellion
    The Irish Rebellion erupted due to grievances over James I's plantation policy in Ireland. The massacre of Protestants fueled tensions. Parliament's Militia Act (1641) aimed to control the army independently of the King. This conflict set the stage for the Grand Remonstrance of 1641, dividing Parliamentarians advocating reform from Royalists seeking negotiation. The Irish Rebellion played a pivotal role in the lead-up to the English Civil War.
  • The grand Remonstrance

    The grand Remonstrance
    The Grand Remonstrance was a significant parliamentary document that outlined grievances against Charles I. It detailed demands, including Parliament's rights to choose ministers, control the Irish army, and reform churches. This revolutionary document divided Parliament into Parliamentarians, supporting reforms, and Royalists, favoring negotiated settlements. The Remonstrance played a pivotal role in polarizing political factions and ultimately led to the first Civil War.
  • 19 Propositions & Beginning of the First Civil War

    19 Propositions & Beginning of the First Civil War
    In a pivotal event, Charles I, suspecting a plot against the Queen, attempted to arrest five MPs in the House of Commons in January 1642(John Pym notably), breaching parliamentary privilege. Fearing for his safety, Charles left London for York. As tensions escalated, Parliament presented the text of the 19 propositions which considered making Charles a Constitutional monarch, pushing Charles to formally declare war on Parliament on August 22, 1642, marking the start of the English Civil War.
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    The First Civil War

    The First Civil War arose from tensions between King Charles I and Parliament over religion, finances, and governance. Cavaliers (Royalists) supported the king's divine right, while Roundheads (Parliamentarians) advocated for parliamentary authority. The Battle of Naseby in 1645 favored Parliament, leading to Charles I's surrender in 1646. This marked the onset of political and religious upheavals, culminating in the regicide of 1649.
  • Charles I surrenders to Scots who hand him to Parliament

    Charles I surrenders to Scots who hand him to Parliament
  • Mutiny of the New Model Army

    Mutiny of the New Model Army
    The New Model Army, created in 1644 by Parliamentarians, was a centralized force of 22,000 armed men. Known as the "praying army," its soldiers carried Bibles, driven by religion and belief in acting on God's behalf. In June 1647, facing unpaid wages, the army mutinied, seized control. This event, the "Seizure of the Kingdoms," occurred in June 1647 and helped fostering radical ideas, including religious and political radicalism influenced by groups like the Levellers.
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    The Second Civil War

    In November 1647, Charles I allied with Scots, sparking the Second Civil War. Cromwell quickly defeated the Royalists, concluding the conflict in January. In December 1648, Pride's Purge saw the Army purge conservative MPs, leading to Charles I's trial for high treason. On January 30, 1649, Charles I was executed, abolishing the monarchy and House of Lords, establishing the Commonwealth, and declaring England a republic.
  • Charles I Execution

    Charles I Execution
    Following a trial accusing the King of high treason: he is convicted and executed. This regicide is still remembered until this day as it altered British history and marked the abolition of the monarchy and House of Lords, establishing the Commonwealth, and declaring England a republic.
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    The Interregnum

    In this era, England adopted a "commonwealth" between kings, opting for governance without a monarch.
    The attempt at republican governance faced challenges, leading to the establishment of the Cromwellian Protectorate.
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    The Commonwealth

    1649 witnessed the abolition of monarchy and the House of Lords, marking England's declaration as a republic.
    Royalist revolts in Ireland and Scotland were brutally suppressed by Cromwell during this period.
    Internal dissenters, including the Levellers, faced repression, culminating in the dissolution of the Rump Parliament in 1653.
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    The Protectorate

    In 1654, Cromwell assumed the role of Lord Protector, establishing a military dictatorship.
    Despite success in wars against Spain, Cromwell's death in 1658 led to a brief period of anarchy.
  • English Invasion of Jamaica

    English Invasion of Jamaica
    The English invaded Jamaica, a former Spanish colony, establishing control over the island. This marked a significant expansion of British influence in the Caribbean. The production of sugar, reliant on enslaved labor, became a driving force in the British West Indies, shaping the region's economic landscape.
  • The Restoration Of Monarchy By Charles II with the Declaration of Breda

    The Restoration Of Monarchy By Charles II with the Declaration of Breda
    Charles II's Declaration of Breda in 1660 promised amnesty and religious toleration.
    Monarchy was formally restored on May 29, 1660, putting an end to the Interregnum.
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    The Early Restoration

    Challenges faced Charles II, including the Anglo-Dutch War, the 1665 Plague outbreak, and the Great Fire of London in 1666. This increased hostility towards Charles II and his court (drunkenness, mistresses...).
    The political crises of 1678, such as the Popish Plot, heightened tensions between Parliament and the monarchy.
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    Charles II's reign

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    The Exclusion Crisis

    Parliament sought to exclude James II from the English throne due to fears of Catholic absolutism.
    Charles II dissolved Parliament in response to attempts to modify the rules of succession.
    Charles II died in 1685, and his brother James II succeeded him, deepening concerns about Catholic influence.
  • The Glorious Revolution

    The Glorious Revolution
    Fears of James II's Catholic absolutism intensified, leading to tensions in 1688.
    In the same year, William of Orange's invasion prompted James II to flee, establishing William and Mary as joint rulers.
    The Glorious Revolution marked a shift to constitutional monarchy, imposing limits on royal powers.
  • The Bill of Rights:

    The Bill of Rights:
    The Bill of Rights listed King James' misdeeds, imposing limitations on royal powers.
    Restrictions included the King's inability to raise taxes without Parliament's consent and the prohibition of a Catholic inheriting the throne.
    The Bill outlined parliamentary rights, emphasizing regular sessions, free elections, and freedom of speech.
  • The Act of Settlement

    The Act of Settlement
    The Act settled the order of succession, ensuring a Protestant line, bypassing numerous Catholic heirs.
    The successor was to be from the Hanoverian descendants of James I, contributing to the formation of the Kingdom of Great Britain.
    The Act marked the end of the 16th and 17th-century quarrels between the King and Parliament.
  • Act of Union between England and Scotland:

    Act of Union between England and Scotland:
    The Act of Union created the United Kingdom of Great Britain, realizing an old dream of James.
    Scotland lost its parliament but gained representation in the House of Commons and the House of Lords.
    The act maintained Scotland's Presbyterian church and distinct laws under the rule of Queen Anne.
  • Robert Walpole Becomes Prime Minister

    Robert Walpole Becomes Prime Minister
    Robert Walpole, a Whig, becomes Britain's first Prime Minister, residing at 10 Downing Street. This marks the rise of party politics, the birth of modern offices like the Cabinet and Prime Minister, and the dominance of the Whigs in British politics until the 1780s.
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    Seven's Years War

    The Seven Years' War, a global conflict, resulted in Britain gaining Florida from the Spanish and (most of) Canada from the French. This war reshaped the geopolitical landscape and contributed to the growth of the British Empire, solidifying its presence in North America.
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    American War of Independence

    The American War of Independence was a turning point as Britain lost its American colonies. This marked the end of the 'First British Empire.' The defeat led to the recognition of the United States as an independent nation, altering the dynamics of the British Empire and influencing future imperial policies.
  • Declaration of Independence

    Declaration of Independence
    The American Revolution begins with the Declaration of Independence, highlighting grievances against George III. The war (1775-1783) concludes with the Treaty of Paris in 1783, formally recognizing the independence of the United States.
  • Outbreak of the French Revolution

    Outbreak of the French Revolution
    The French Revolution begins, influencing British radicals who advocate for democratic reforms. The subsequent French Revolutionary Wars (1793-1802) and Napoleonic Wars (1803-1815) shape British foreign policy and lead to internal repression of radicalism.
  • Irish Rebellion

    Irish Rebellion
    The Irish Rebellion of 1798, influenced by American and French revolutionary ideas, results in uprisings against British rule. The rebellion is quelled, and in 1801, the Acts of Union create the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.
  • Acte d'Union

    Acte d'Union