Domestic Policy under Henry VIII

Catherine Dilnot
Mind Map by Catherine Dilnot, updated 11 months ago
Catherine Dilnot
Created by Catherine Dilnot almost 5 years ago


A-Level History (Tudors) Mind Map on Domestic Policy under Henry VIII, created by Catherine Dilnot on 04/10/2015.

Resource summary

Domestic Policy under Henry VIII
1 Justice
1.1 John Guy argued that Wolsey did achieve greater justice and presided over many individual cases in person
1.2 After he was appointed as Lord Chancellor in 1515 Wolsey was the head of the country's secular legal system
1.3 Wolsey put much time into the legal system
1.4 He heard many cases individually and anyone, regardless of their wealth was able to bring their case before him at the Star Chamber
1.4.1 The Star Chamber dealt with 120 cases per year under Wolsey compared with only 12 under Henry VII He left an enormous backlog of cases to be heard in the Star Chamber by 1529, and the administration was chaotic
1.5 Wolsey was often seen to be using the law as a personal vendetta against those who he had a grudge against
1.5.1 Sir Amya Paulet- was sumonded to appear before Wolsey and was kept waiting in daily attendance for five years under the threat of confiscation of all property This was because when Wolsey joined the church Apulet put him in the stocks to teach him a lesson about humility, grave and arrogance
1.6 Wolsey caused resentment through his work in the Star Chamber, especially amongst nobles and gentlemen who were responsible for administering jutsice in their localities and should not see themselves as above the law
1.6.1 In 1515 he sent the Earl of Northumberland to Fleet Prison for contempt of the counci's jurisdiction
1.7 Wolsey was essentially far less determined in the pursuit of justice than he was in furthering his own interest
1.7.1 He championed the poor as part of his vendetta against the rich because he had been so often treated with contempt as a commoner
2 Enclosures
2.1 Peter Gwyn focuses on the action Wolsey took against nobles that enclosed land illegally- arguing it shows Wolsey's dedication to the plight of the poor
2.2 Enclosures involved fencing off common land for profitable sheep shearing and this was thought to be responsible for rural depopulation and poverty
2.3 In 1517 Wolsey launched a national enquiry into enclosed land
2.3.1 Many brought to court were ordered to rebuild houses that had been destroyed and allow the land to be free for arable farming
2.4 In reality enclosures continued to take place and reform was piecemeal
2.5 Wolsey did not show determination to tackle the whole issue
2.6 Wolsey's actions made him more unpopular with the ruling classes- in a parliamentary session of 1525, Wolsey was forced to accept all existing enclosures thus demonstrating he could not exert total authority over the nobility
3 Finances
3.1 Historians have debated whether Wolsey really brought effective reform of the financial system to make it more fair and eficient
3.2 Wolsey's greatest achievement was to replace the system of 'fifteenths and tenths' which was the standard form of taxation in England paid by towns and boroughs to the crown with a more flexible and realistic 'Tudor subsidy' based on the ability to pay
3.3 Wolsey organised a national survey called the 'General Proscrioption' to assess the population's taxable wealth
3.4 The Tudor Subsidy was favoured by Wolsey because it was more progessive
3.4.1 Between 1513 and 1516 it raised £170,000 while the old system only raised £90,000 For the first time since 1334, the crown was taxing realistically
3.5 In 1523 Wolsey demanded over £800,000 from Parliament in taxation on top of loans which already amounted to £260,000
3.5.1 His manner was abrupt and forthright and in reality he only raised £300,000
3.6 Wolsey's fiscal policies were causing resentment from the ruling classes
3.6.1 Late payments became increasingly common and Wolsey was having to anticipate money from taxpayers in advance, thug accounting for money he did not yet have
3.7 The Amicable Grants Crisis in 1525 was when matters came to a head
3.7.1 Henry wanted to invade France especially as the French King was held captive by Charles V A Parliamentary tax called the Amicable Grant was ta parliamentary tax It was met by 10,000 men across Suffolk and East Anglia, who marched on Lavenham (an important cloth making centre in Suffolk) The Grant was scrapped and some say this was the beginning of the end for Wolsey
4 Parliament
4.1 Many historians have criticised Wolsey's attitude towards Parliament. He is accused of deliberately monopolising power and attempting to get rid of Parliament altogether. This is essentially accurate as Parliament only met twice during the whole period
4.2 Parliament only met twice during the whole period
4.2.1 Wolsey believed that Parliament was a potential source of trouble for the government and therefore himself
4.3 Wolsey only met parliament when he had to (e.g 1523)
4.4 Members of Parliament were reluctant to give him what he needed
4.5 The main institution at the heart of Tudor Government was the Privy Chamber and it was made up on the King's trusted friends and saw to his intimate needs
5 The Church
5.1 Historians debate over the issue of whether Wolsey created any meaningful reform of the Catholic Church
5.2 By 1515 the Hunne Affair had increased anti-clerical feeling and Parliament were frequently accusing of the unfairness of the Benefit of the Clergy.
5.3 Wolsey continued extravagance and his appointment as Legate a Latere enhanced his ecclesiastical position and allowed him to establish his own Probate Courts (religious courts that dealt with the wills left by the laity and included monetary donations to the Church)
5.4 Some historians argue that Wolsey was guilty of pluralism, nepotism and absenteeism
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