Elizabethan Settlement Essay

1086 words - 4 pages

Elizabethan Settlement

After Elizabeth took the throne and became the ruling monarch of England she wanted to relieve the tension between the Protestants and the Catholics. Elizabeth decided on a compromise between the two religions, one that would have characteristics of both, this new religion was called Anglicanism. The factors that caused Elizabeth to make this decision were her personal religious preferences, the views of the Marian Bishops and the opinions given to her by the parliament. However this compromise did have consequences. These include the dissatisfaction from both Protestants and Catholics, The Vestiarian Controversy and the Catholic opposition the settlement.
After the death of Henry in 1547, a 10 year old Edward came to the throne. The English Church became increasingly Protestant in worship and doctrine under the Protestant Lord Somerset. Mary succeeded the throne after Edward’s death in 1553. Mary was a devout Catholic and saw it her mission to restore Catholicism back to England. She used mainly persecution to do this, by burning Protestants for not renouncing their beliefs, these actions turned many English people against Catholicism.
Elizabeth wanted to create one religion for the entirety of England, one that would hopefully make both religious groups in England happy. One factor which led to the Elizabethan settlement was her own personal religious preferences, she did not favour one religion over the other however she did quote “There is one Christ, Jesus Christ, one faith. All else is a dispute over trifles”. She tried to make the people of England happy by not persecuting a group like Mary before her did, Elizabeth believed that combining aspects of both religions into one would solve the problem. The Anglican religion would translate the once Hebrew Bible to English for the masses to read and had Catholic and Protestant rituals combined.
Another factor causing Elizabeth to create a new religion was the fact that she disliked the tension between the two groups in England; Elizabeth wanted a united country and in turn made Anglicanism one with the throne and monarch. The Marian Bishops who had been appointed by Mary before her had displayed their intolerance for Protestants. They disagreed with Elizabeth’s plan for the settlement and refused to crown her at the coronation ceremony. Bishop White referred to the returning Protestant exiles as “The wolves be coming out of Geneva and have sent their books before, full of pestilential doctrines”.
Elizabeth would not proceed with the settlement without the assistance of a parliament. A completely free election was cast for the creation of a new parliament; Elizabeth wanted to see how people felt about the religious controversy. Many Protestant sympathisers gained the vote along with Protestant refugees who had just returned from exile in Germany and Switzerland. Elizabeth could see through this turnout that the House of Common would support her in her alteration to...

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