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Causes of the Glorious Revolution 1688-1689 (Religion? Politics?)

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Causes of the Glorious Revolution 1688-1689 (Religion? Politics?)

Page 1 of 5
In English history, the events of 1688 to 1689 lead to the deposition of James II and the ascension of William III and Mary II to the English throne. Those events are known as the Glorious Revolution. In the origins and outcome of the Glorious Revolution, religion plays a significant role, however; politics also had a key role to play. In 17th Century England, religion and politics came close to being a single entity. Religion played a major role in the decisions made in the courts and parliament, and politics decided which religion would be dominant. Religion was not the sole cause for the Glorious Revolution; it needed the spice of politics to heat things up.

The origins of the Glorious Revolution have they’re roots back when Charles II was placed on the throne. People already had their misgivings about Charles II as the Stuarts were suspected of favoring Roman Catholicism and wanting to restore an absolute monarchy. Also adding to the quiet discord running through parliament and the populace, Charles II usually favored alliances with Catholic Powers, i.e. France, and was also unresponsive to parliament. When Charles II was on his deathbed, a parliamentary group, called the Whigs, tried to ensure a protestant successor by excluding the Duke of York, later James II, from the throne. As James openly practiced his own religion, Catholicism, it is surprising that he was widely accepted as being the next in line and thus the Whigs lost their bid to keep James II off the throne.

When James ascended the thrown, in 1685, the ruling classes welcomed him, as he was a quiet, sober, hard-working man, unlike his brother. It was considered quite natural for James to practice his own religion and some people even commended him for doing so. It was only when James started making politically inappropriate moves that trouble started stirring. One move James II made was to push parliament into getting rid of the penal laws that prevented Roman Catholics from worshipping...

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