Gulliver

Only available on StudyMode
  • Download(s) : 47
  • Published : February 24, 2013
Open Document
Text Preview
HISTORICAL AND POLITICAL CONTEXT OF “GULLIVER’S TRAVELS” In general, from the very beginning, we can say that during Jonathan Swift’s lifetime (from 1667 to 1745) England was a powerful and rich empire, though there were internal political problems arising now and then during the 17-18th centuries. To start with, during the Elizabethan period, the English fleet defeated the Spanish Armada. Continuing the competition with Spain, the English went to Americas where their first colony was founded by Walter Raleigh in 1585 and called Virginia. In the East England was competing with the Dutch and French. With the East India Company, which was formed initially to trade with the East Indies, England ended up trading mainly with China and the Indian subcontinent. Later on, England will continue the process of colonization and expansion throughout the world. In 1642-1646 the Civil War broke out between the supporters of the king Charles I and those of the Parliament, with an interwoven part of a wider war of the Three Kingdoms that included Scotland and Ireland. As the result Charles I was captured and beheaded in 1649. The kingdom was replaces with the Commonwealth with Oliver Cromwell as Lord Protector ruling the country. In 1658 Cromwell died and after his son’s resignation the period of Restoration followed with Charles II returning from France to take the throne as a new monarch. According to the new constitution, the king and the Parliament should rule together, though it was not fully put into practice until the next century. The court was holding power. At that time the Royal Society (a learned society for science) was founded that led to the encouragement of arts and sciences. In Parliament two factions appeared: the Tories and the Whigs, the former being royalists and the latter – liberals. In 1685 Charles died, and his brother James II (a Roman Catholic) mounted the throne. Despite his promise to maintain the political and religious status quo and protect the...
tracking img