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Old December 9th, 2012, 10:15 AM   #21
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@viking:

Thanks for the information on the Privy Council's role as a political intermediary during Parliamentary sessions. The Privy Council has usually impressed me as the "national governmental mechanism" of Elizabethan England. Local government being, well, local, it was essential to obtain and keep the support of elite interests who could serve the Monarch's interests and profit from that at the same time.

AFAIK, Lords Lieutenant had been appointed under Henry viij to relieve sheriffs of some military obligations (not sure; not sure exactly when). The L.L.s communicated the Monarch's will in the localities, presumably for access to some material benefit, or to be exempted from some onerous obligation.

Justices of the Peace it appears were charged with collection of certain taxes locally...a poor tax, taxes on movable goods, etc., issuing certain licenses and collecting the fees, and with keeping order locally (assisted by the sheriff, constables?). I recall that county surveyors were also responsible to the JoP.

The local government structure was complex, and included community worthies in "commissions" including muster commissions to feed the conscription of later Elizabethan wars. Of course the worthy gentry ran the affairs of their own manors/estates themselves, and made certain as far as possible that their own best tenants and retainers were not conscripted.

I don't know much about the towns, town councils and mayors...and I don't know much at all about the courts except that "Quarter Sessions" met four times a year, and there was a Court of Assizes for the county. AFAIK there were also Admiralty Courts dealing with maritime issues. All that is a blank for me.

There is much more here than Good Queen Bess and her "guys." Another PhD dissertaion!
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Old December 9th, 2012, 10:33 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Louise C View Post
In Daily Life in Elizabethan England, Jeffrey L. Singman writes:

The government of England centered on the figure of the monarch, who relied heavily on her Privy Council for the day-to-day running of the country. The monarch, and the Council acting in the monarch's name, had some power to issue decress enforceable at law, but the exact extent of these powers was ill-defined. This constitutional ambiguity led to bloody results in the 1640s when King Charles and his Parliament came to civil war over the issue of the king's authority.

The most comprehensively powerful organ of government was the monarch sitting in Parliament: a bill passed by Parliament and assented to by the monarch was the highest legal authority in the land. Parliament was divided into two hourses; the House of Lords, consisting of approximately 65 lay peers, 22 bishops, and the country's 2 archbishops (Canterbury and York); and the House of Commons, consisting of 2 representatives chosen from each of England's 39 shires, 2 from each of about 65 English cities and towns (with some exceptions, including London, which sent 4) as well as a single representative from each of 12 Welsh shires and 1 each from 12 Welsh towns, for a total of about 450 representatives. The exact means by which the representatives were chosen depended on the shire or town, but in the shires any holder of lands worth 40 shillings a year was entitled to vote.

In general, the institutions of Elizabethan government seem haphazard by modern standards. The basic unit of governmental organization in both town and country was the parish. Each parish had its own officials, such as a constable who was responsible for basic law enforcement, ale-conners who ensured that the laws regulating the quality of ale were observed, and churchwardens who were responsible for the state of the parish church. In towns there were also scavengers who oversaw public sanitation.

The actual bureaucracy was small and woefully underfunded. This meant that the governmental apparatus required extensive participation by the citizenry. Great lords might serve in the Privy Council or in major offices of the state, army, or navy; local gentlemen were vital in administrating the individual shires; and even ordinary craftsmen, yeomen, and husbandmen might be called upon to serve in minor local offices of the village, town, or parish. At the same time, this kind of unpaid work was a cause of governmental corruption; men who had to spend considerable time and money on an unsalaried government office would frequnetlyu find other ways to make the post profitable.
Hello, Louise,

I just read your post AFTER reading viking's last.

You already mentioned some of the things I had in mind in response to viking. Thanks.
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Old December 9th, 2012, 03:56 PM   #23

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Pikeshot, please understand my complaints in these comments are not addressed to you.
When I stated this thread it was not, as I have been accused, an attempt to derail the Charles 1 thread but to complement it. To give an in depth analysis of Elizabeth's control of Parliament as opposed to the blunders of Charles.
I am quite happy to delve deeper into structure if there is interest. Here I will digress. Too often I find interest short lived and once the flurry of unsubstantiated opinion has been fired, interest wanes. Am I a grumpy old man? Yes.
I will explain Central Government, i.e the court system; patronage and monopolies and try to move in an orderly progression to cover things like local government including the duties of Sheriffs and Lord Lieutenants. By the breadth of the subject I will be brief to the point of being sketchy but am willing to amplify any point as required.
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Old December 9th, 2012, 04:13 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by viking View Post
Pikeshot, please understand my complaints in these comments are not addressed to you.
When I stated this thread it was not, as I have been accused, an attempt to derail the Charles 1 thread but to complement it. To give an in depth analysis of Elizabeth's control of Parliament as opposed to the blunders of Charles.
I am quite happy to delve deeper into structure if there is interest. Here I will digress. Too often I find interest short lived and once the flurry of unsubstantiated opinion has been fired, interest wanes. Am I a grumpy old man? Yes.
I will explain Central Government, i.e the court system; patronage and monopolies and try to move in an orderly progression to cover things like local government including the duties of Sheriffs and Lord Lieutenants. By the breadth of the subject I will be brief to the point of being sketchy but am willing to amplify any point as required.
Any information you can provide will be appreciated.

AND...you are not as grumpy as I am.
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Old December 10th, 2012, 08:41 PM   #25

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Unfortunately my health is not as robust as I would like. Occasionally, for reasons explained in the leaving /absence thread, I am ordered to bed for total rest. Sorry I will be out of action for a few days
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Old December 11th, 2012, 07:02 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by Black Dog View Post
Elizabeth killed just as many Catholics as Mary killed Protestants
Elizabeth did not persecute Catholics.

You failed to mention that the difference between Elizabeth and her bloodthirsty elder sister is that Elizabeth tolerated Catholicism whereas Mary did not tolerate Protestantism.

Elizabeth allowed Catholics to practise their religion as long as they did it churches. What she did not approve of were Catholics who were practising their religion in privacy, such as in houses. She did not approve of this because she thought, not unjustifiably, that such secret Catholic prayer meetings took place so that they could plot against Elizabeth. The only Catholics that Elizabeth ordered to be executed were those who partook in such secret services. Elizabeth did not execute Catholics for being Catholics.

Bloody Mary, on the other hand, was not so accommodating and tolerating of Protestantism. No Protestant was allowed to practise their religion no matter what and any Protestants caught practising their religion, even in church, were burnt at the stake - unless they converted to the "one true" religion of Catholicism.

And you are wrong that Elizabeth killed as many Catholics as Mary killed Protestant, Approximately 300 Catholics were executed between the time that Elizabeth was a baby and the time of Charles II, who died 82 years after Elizabeth. Bloody Mary killed 300 Protestants in a mere five years.

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and her actions in Ireland should put paid any notion that she was intrinsically more humane that other monarchs of her time
Elizabeth had to put down rebellions in Ireland to stop that country, of which she was Queen, becoming a base for Catholic Spain to attack England.

Last edited by Brunel; December 11th, 2012 at 07:13 AM.
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Old December 11th, 2012, 07:23 AM   #27
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Religon,religon. religon. I am no expert but Black Dog has a point. Under catholic Mary Spain was Englands friend, under protestant Elizabeth, Englands enemy. Philip even secured papal blessing for the Armada. It would seem that both foreign and domestic policy was indeed governed by religon.
It wasn't Elizabeth's fault that Spain suddenly became England's enemy under Elizabeth I. The blame lies fairly with the intolerant Phillip II of Spain.

And if anyone's foreign policy was governed by religion it was that of the Spanish king.

The Spanish king, Phillip II of Spain, who had been Bloody Mary's husband until her death in 1558, was a devout Catholic who viewed Protestant Elizabeth as a heretic and therefore an illegitimate ruler of England. Elizabeth's view of him wasn't helped when he supported the nefarious attempt by Catholic Mary Queen of Scots to overthrow Elizabeth and place herself on the English throne.

It's hardly suprising then that Elizabeth was hardly going to be enamelled with Spain.
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Old December 11th, 2012, 08:50 AM   #28

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brunel View Post
Elizabeth did not persecute Catholics.

You failed to mention that the difference between Elizabeth and her bloodthirsty elder sister is that Elizabeth tolerated Catholicism whereas Mary did not tolerate Protestantism.

Elizabeth allowed Catholics to practise their religion as long as they did it churches. What she did not approve of were Catholics who were practising their religion in privacy, such as in houses. She did not approve of this because she thought, not unjustifiably, that such secret Catholic prayer meetings took place so that they could plot against Elizabeth. The only Catholics that Elizabeth ordered to be executed were those who partook in such secret services. Elizabeth did not execute Catholics for being Catholics.

Bloody Mary, on the other hand, was not so accommodating and tolerating of Protestantism. No Protestant was allowed to practise their religion no matter what and any Protestants caught practising their religion, even in church, were burnt at the stake - unless they converted to the "one true" religion of Catholicism.

And you are wrong that Elizabeth killed as many Catholics as Mary killed Protestant, Approximately 300 Catholics were executed between the time that Elizabeth was a baby and the time of Charles II, who died 82 years after Elizabeth. Bloody Mary killed 300 Protestants in a mere five years.



Elizabeth had to put down rebellions in Ireland to stop that country, of which she was Queen, becoming a base for Catholic Spain to attack England.
We've had this conversation before, and not just I, but others have given you plenty of evidence to the contrary on many levels of almost all of what you have said. http://www.historum.com/european-his...history-3.html

Mary didn't like Protestants, but she didn't start the persecutions until 2 years after her reign and when her life was threatened in a rebellion, she had more cause then just "intolerance". She took too far, yes, but it didn't spring from nothing. And to label her as "bloodthirsty" only continues to show your ignorance about her.

"Not unjustifiably", funny you allow Elizabeth the same excuse to persecute Catholics that you abhor Mary for. Surely when a monarchs life is threaten they see right to act as they see fit?

And once again, persecution does not equal death, it is the suppression and targeting of people of certain race and/or belief, and Elizabeth did just that to Catholics. And no, they were not only ones plotting against her, they're were plenty who just wished to practice Catholicism without all of Elizabeth's rules, and for that, they lost their lives. Not to the extent that Mary did, but it well enough happened during Elizabeth's reign.

This all comes back to your gross bias against Catholics and anything non Angelican-English that you cannot even once look at Mary objectively and always white-wash Elizabeth to high heaven.

Last edited by Kiki19; December 11th, 2012 at 09:12 AM.
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Old December 11th, 2012, 08:56 PM   #29

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It's not easy to simplify the Central Administration of Elizabethan government but I will do my best. This means I will leave some points that some might want amplified.
I'll start with three. The King's Bench which administered criminal justice, The Court of Common Pleas which settled suits between subjects and The Exchequer which dealt with revenue claims. So far, so good. However, soon, The Exchequer and King's Bench moved in to handle cases normally settled by Court of Common Pleas because cases in civil matters tended to deprive plaintiff of a remedy.
Next to be set up was the Court of Star Chamber which had members of the Privy Council in sitting. Although the Star Chamber and Privy Council were separate, the personnel was the same, except justices of King's Bench and Court of Common Pleas also sat.Star Chamber had no rights over life or felony, nor breaches of public order.
Chancery possessed common law jurisdiction and was the secretariat which wrote, sealed and recorded everything dispatched under The Great Seal. It was the largest department of the state.
Add now the Courts of Requests which impinged on and was challenged by lawyers of he Court of Common Pleas.
Now to Councils of the North and the Marches of Wales who were regional equivalents lof the Central Administration.
Then there was Principal Secretary whose job was to control the rest of the realm's affairs especially security--the spy master.
Almost forgot Treasury which was responsible for the navy.Told you it was complex
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Old December 12th, 2012, 05:28 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by Kiki19 View Post
We've had this conversation before, and not just I, but others have given you plenty of evidence to the contrary on many levels of almost all of what you have said. http://www.historum.com/european-his...history-3.html
Most historians will disagree with you.

Quote:
Mary didn't like Protestants, but she didn't start the persecutions until 2 years after her reign
She murdered her first Protestants in 1555 but Mary's persecution of Protestants started the moment she took to the Throne in 1553. She made it plain right from the start that she wouldn't tolerate those who practised Protestantism.

Quote:
and when her life was threatened in a rebellion, she had more cause then just "intolerance".
If you are talking about Wyatt's Rebellion then I have to tell you that I'm siding with the rebels on this one.

The rebellion started when Mary unwisely decided to marry the Catholic Philip II of Spain, a decision which was VERY unpopular with the English people. To put it simply, Mary had it coming to her. It was sheer provocation against the English people.

Quote:
And to label her as "bloodthirsty" only continues to show your ignorance about her.
She murdered 300 people because of their faith in just five years. She was a bloodthirsty bigot who deserves to have gone down in history as a tyrant and England's worst queen.

Quote:
"Not unjustifiably", funny you allow Elizabeth the same excuse to persecute Catholics that you abhor Mary for.
As I've said time and time again - and as I've said just a few posts ago - Elizabeth did NOT persecute Catholics. Unlike Bloody Mary who didn't tolerate Protestantism one bit, Elizabeth tolerated Catholics and Catholicism and allowed them to worship in churches. The only Catholics she had executed were those who broke the law by worhipping in private as she was rightly concerned that such private "prayer meetings" were actually plots against her. Try studying this period of English history.


Quote:
And once again, persecution does not equal death, it is the suppression and targeting of people of certain race and/or belief, and Elizabeth did just that to Catholics.
Elizabeth did not target Catholics because of their religious beliefs. She targeted those who broke the law by worhipping in private.

And, even if she had targeted Catholics because of their beliefs, I wouldn't blame her. Catholicism was an unpopular religion in England at the time, a religion which was viewed with suspicion by most Englishmen.

Quote:
This all comes back to your gross bias against Catholics and anything non Angelican-English that you cannot even once look at Mary objectively and always white-wash Elizabeth to high heaven.
You need to ask yourself WHY there is a history of anti-Catholicism in England. It certainly didn't spring up for no reason.
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