Elizabeth Parliament

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Mind Map by holliemontague, updated more than 1 year ago
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Created by holliemontague almost 6 years ago
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Mind Map on Elizabeth Parliament, created by holliemontague on 05/01/2014.

Resource summary

Elizabeth Parliament
1 1558-71
1.1 Heath announced Mary's death and proclaimed Elizabeth's succession - he should've dissolved parliament - showed Elizabeth had support of elites. She appointed Cecil Principal Secretary to the Council and was assured the support of 9 of Mary's councillors. Elizabeth wanted to preserve the prerogative powers of the Crown: right o call and suspend parliament, declare war, appoint ministers, name a successor etc... Other key figures in council were Bacon, Russel and Knollys.
1.2 Cecil was seen as more radical in religious terms and this led to divisions between him and more moderate council members - the Privy council had no chief minister so decisions were made collectively.
1.3 Parliament sat for less than 3 years in her whole reign. It's functions were law making (438 acts passed), granting taxtation (11/13 sessions asked to grant revenue) and advice - however Elizabeth was not interested in MPs advice, especially when she felt it came under the royal prerogative.
1.4 Mps rushed to get home and Elizabeth thought of herself as superior to MPs.
1.5 Parliament was managed by the Privy Council and Cecil was important in the deliberations of the Commons - he prepared the Crown's legislative programme.
1.6 1559 parliament - religious settlement. 1563 and 1566-7 parliaments - Elizabeth wanted money but MPs wanted to debate marriage and succession. 1566 saw further religious reform. 1571- wanted to strengthen treason law and laws against Catholics after the Pope's excommunication and she wanted a subsidy - all of these were granted.
2 1571-88
2.1 Cecil was the most influential minister and in 1572 became Lord Treasurer and Baron Burghley. He co-ordinated the privy Council, managed parliament and supervised the Exchequer. He was strict on royal expenditure however failed to reform the Crowns system of raising revenue.
2.2 There was a reshaping of the council in the 1970s. The number of Catholic aristocracy fell and many firmly Protestant councillors were appointed. This didn't improve its effectiveness. They refused to endorse the French marriage and were debating intervention in the Netherlands. There was a breakdown in relations after the execution of MQS in 1587. It has been argued that the council offered cohesive decision making.
2.3 1579 Elizabeth contemplated marriage with the French Duke of Anjou but people were worried about a French infant succession. negotiations failed.
2.4 1572 - MPs called for execution of Norfolk and MQS after Ridolfi plot. Norfolk was executed but Elizabeth refused to declare MQS a traitor and remove her from succession. 1576 - recall of 1572, Queen was voted a subsidy and Wentworth imprisoned for breeching royal prerogative. 1581 - recall of 1572, she strengthened anti-catholic laws and was granted a subsidy. 1584 - anti-catholic legislation, gave legal basis to Bond of Association, act deemed Jesuits and Catholic priests as traitors.
2.5 1570s and 80s there were good parliamentary management. In 1584 she allowed MPs home for christmas, MPs generally obeyed, it was the House of Commons that imprisoned Wentworth and Elizabeth arrested Cope and others in 1587 for discussing his Bill and Book.
2.6 Regional gov and border admin: Council of Wales and the Marches - answerable to Privy Council, counties angered that they had limited political influence. Anglo-Scottish Border - divided into east, middle and west march - important to protect the border from French/Scottish invasion. Elizabeth appointed leading locals to lead them - there was dissatisfaction with border admin due to corrupt northern practices and factional rivalry. Northern Counties had legal and admin duties but it failed to deal with Northern Rebellion. Earl of Huntingdon used the council to attack Catholicism.
2.7 Assize judges - there were 6 assize circuits. Twice a year judges tried both criminal and civil cases in each county. They bought royal justice and were important in communication between Crown and leaders of county government.
2.8 Lords Lieutenant - responsible for military organisation of county. Made permanent in 1585, effective structure for protecting foreign invasion.There were deputy lieutenants, muster captains and muster masters.
2.9 County Government. Sheriffs collected royal revenue, held county courts, trained soldiers and executed criminals. Their power declined under Elizabeth. Justices of Peace - exercised criminal jurisdiction in cases not passed onto assize judges. They dealt with social and economic regulations.
2.10 Church Courts - under authority of bishop. Consistory court ran by Chancellor of Diocese (appointed by bishop) and lower court ran by archdeacon - dealt with less important matters. they had legal responsibilities over moral offences.
2.11 Local and parish government - The high constable could arrest and execute criminals sent my sheriffs an JPs. They trained village military. Elected yearly and were genuine representatives of the community.
2.12 Boroughs - self governing towns. Power in the hands of the mayor and senior members. They could establish own laws but were subject to instructions from the Privy Council.
3 1588-1603
3.1 Many able ministers died in the 80s and 90s (Leicster, Walshingham...). By 1597 the council only had 11 members. Elizabeth didn't allow Burghley to retire. Burghley appointed his son Cecil to the council who took on an important role. Replacements tended to lack skills.
3.2 Financial trouble due to war with Spain and declining yield from taxation. However, financial admin was well controlled and systems worked.
3.3 Factional rivalry. The main access to patronage was through Burghley, Liecster and Hatton. The system became unbalanced in the 90s as some sources of patronage were dead and Cecil was less inclined to keep a balanced system. essex felt he should be a patronage broker. Essex disagreed with cecil's takeover of the council as he used bureaucracy. The two disagreed on the war with Spain - Burghley wanted to end it, Essex wanted continuation.
3.3.1 Essex tried to advance Bacon to Attorney General but Elizabeth refused. Cecil recommended the less prestigious post of Solicitor General. Cecil was appointed Secretary of State. The failure of Essex's 1597 expedition to make financial gains worsened his relations with Elizabeth.
3.3.1.1 Elizabeth took Cecil's advice on who to appoint Lord Deputy in 1598 - this angered Essex, leading to Elizabeth slapping him and him withdrawing from court. He took 3 months to apologise and failed as Lord Lieutenant in Ireland.
3.4 1589 parliament aimed at raising revenue - the Queen got a double subsidy over 4 years. 1593 - aimed at recusancy legislation, there was some opposition to the bill. Wentworth imprisoned for mentioning succession. 1597-8 - Elizabeth needed money, introduction of poor law and controversy over monopolies. 1601 - controversy over monopolies but Elizabeth praised MPs in 'Golden Speech'.
3.5 Management of parliament became more difficult in 90s due to: deaths of councillors, financial difficulty and resentment over monopolies. Coke (elected speaker) successfully ensured the Crown's bills were given priority. Differences in dealing with religion - Crown wanted a punitive act against sectaries but MPs opposed this.
3.6 Monopolies issue. The Crown sold patents of monopoly at a time when real incomes were declining (making it hard to finance war with Spain). Many saw this as being inflationary and anti-competitive. The Crown later promised to scrutinise existing patents not prevent the suing of patentees. However, the Crown continued to grant patents leading to controversy in 1601 parliament. In the 1601 session critics of the Crown secured control over parliament. They produced evidence of the negative effects of monopolies and this led the Crown to revoke the most unpopular ones. The Commons showed political control over monopolies and administrative success by refining the poor law in 1597 which lasted until 1834.
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