Was King Charles I of England a bad man, or just a bad leader?

VHS

Ad Honorem
Dec 2015
4,491
Florania
#31
Whether they are Flunkies or A Students, I agree. Saying it was Laud and not Charles is like saying it was Himmler and not Hitler.

Charles is just another king. He miscalculated and ended up on the losing side. Is that what makes a king "bad?"
Any of them will lie, steal and kill. Does that makes a king a "bad" person?
Charles I lacked what we call "leadership quality", such as diplomatic skills, interpersonal skills, right connections, ability to balance or choose side.
 

Code Blue

Ad Honorem
Feb 2015
3,980
Caribbean
#32
Charles I lacked what we call "leadership quality", such as diplomatic skills, interpersonal skills, right connections, ability to balance or choose side.
It seems so. I wonder how much of that is just endemic to being King, to being told from the time you are born that you were chosen by God to rule over everyone. If not for Cromwell, perhaps Charles would not have his historical distinction and at this point, be just another arrogant King who put down an uprising.
 

betgo

Ad Honorem
Jul 2011
6,212
#33
It is not as much the 30 Years and 80 Years Wars that created fears. It was the reign of Mary I. Her Spanish marriage created fears that England would become a province of Spain. Then there were the executions of "heretics" under her, as well as those of Catholic "traitors" under Elizabeth I. Also the Spanish Armada's attempt to invade England and make it Catholic.

So there were big political issues, trauma, and fears stirred up by Charles' apparent attempt to make England Catholic. There were fears of an absolute monarch imposing Catholicism as in France and Spain.

Charles' high church policies had much more support than the Puritan's approach. Most of the aristocracy and gentry was Roman Catholic and / or high church. The opposition was more about political issues related to religion than strictly religious ones.
 
Jun 2016
1,843
England, 200 yards from Wales
#34
If he had a failing, it was the inability to appreciate the depth of religious feeling of his subjects. A little circumspection in his dealings with the covenanters and puritans would have saved him his crown and his head.
I suspect that both he and the Covenanters (and Puritans) felt that anyone who had different religious opinions from their own deserved no appreciation.
I'd agree with Linschoten, he was not so much evil as stubborn, while being somewhat easily led by those who supported him, maybe a bit stupid, or at least of limited outlook, but if not a ruler his virtues might have shown up more.
 

Code Blue

Ad Honorem
Feb 2015
3,980
Caribbean
#35
It is not as much the 30 Years and 80 Years Wars that created fears. It was the reign of Mary I. Her Spanish marriage created fears that England would become a province of Spain. Then there were the executions of "heretics" under her, as well as those of Catholic "traitors" under Elizabeth I. Also the Spanish Armada's attempt to invade England and make it Catholic.
I think there is false equivalence here.

Why do you put traitor in quotes, like plotting to assassinate the monarch is not treason? Elizabeth was not executing people merely because they were not Protestant or not Anglican. There is no Protestant Council of Trent, no Protestant Inquisition, and no Protestant equivalent of the Edict of 1550.

And this goes back to my question re post 12 and religious extremism? Who are the extremists? Who institutes government that kill en masse for the crime of heretical thought? Not the Puritans.

Charles' high church policies had much more support than the Puritan's approach.
Your posts have made a number of these quantitative assessments. What data?

I am going to suggest that this Puritan seed blossomed. Look what happened to the law of treason. Charles thinks that treason is a crime against a king, not a crime that can be committed by a king. It grows out of a theory that power descends from God to Charles who reigns. The Puritans are, in effect, using a new and antithetical idea of defining just power as something that ascends from the people, and thus treason is a crime against the people, and thus treason is a crime that a King can commit. Hmm, not the king as sovereign, but the people as sovereign. So called "limited government," that there is a limit to a King's right.

Do the Puritans establish government somwehre else where this takes root? Look at the treason clause in the US Constitution. Is it a crime against a President who has invoked (unconstitutional) emergency power to use force against the people, or is it a crime for ANYONE to levy war against the "states," the entities in which the people have organized themselves?

Think about that, and ask at any time which would be more "popular:" government by a ruler who is above the law, the by a ruler who is subject to law? The Vatican model of divine Right or the Puritan (Protestant/Calvinist) model in which even the self-supposed "divine" Kind is subject to the law. Rex Lex or Lex Rex?
 
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Willempie

Ad Honorem
Jul 2015
5,212
Netherlands
#36
What is the difference between being a closeted Catholic and making Anglicism into Catholicism? The latter is coming out of the closet? And the disbanding of Parliament is Romanism itself. Isn't that a proxy for what Julius Caesar did? And didn't ultimately both Charles 1 and Julius Caesar meet the same fate: death at the hands of the legislature? (The Republic Strikes Back).
It wasn't so much as making the CoE/S catholic, but that he wanted it organized similarly. Basically similar to the olden days in which a bishop was appointed by and answerable to the king. He also wanted more "glamor" in church. Hardly a catholic.
Note that in various other countries there were similar fights between puritans and moderates.
In 1625, as the Crown passes from James to Charles, the Thirty's Years War and the Eighty Years War are still raging. And there are sill senior statesmen with living memory of who financed the Armada. Given the scope of the Papal foothold in Ireland, I don't think there is much chance of keeping the war out of Britain. It's just a question of which side one is on or appears to be on.
Which is why he supported the Huguenots in France.
 

Code Blue

Ad Honorem
Feb 2015
3,980
Caribbean
#37
It wasn't so much as making the CoE/S catholic, but that he wanted it organized similarly.
That distinction between form and substance may be significant to you, but I suspect to the Puritan or Calvinist or to a second-generation John Knox - Romanism in form and Romanism in substance are both Romanism. And that it is only a matter of time before one (form or substance) leads to the other.

Basically similar to the olden days in which a bishop was appointed by and answerable to the king. He also wanted more "glamor" in church. Hardly a catholic.
I would not say "hardly." There mere fact that a bishop is answerable to anyone means that the church is not independent of political control, and conscience can be a crime. If by olden days here, you mean the 1300s, a hundred years into the Reformation is a whole new ballgame.

Do you think people were less sensitive to nuance in political indicators in the 1600s than they are today? Look at how easy it is for some politician to get called a Nazi today, and to have one flippant remark put violent people in the streets and cause legislative resolutions in protest. Charles was an object of scrutiny and suspicion and, at best, did nothing to alleviate fear of Romansim.
 

Willempie

Ad Honorem
Jul 2015
5,212
Netherlands
#38
That distinction between form and substance may be significant to you, but I suspect to the Puritan or Calvinist or to a second-generation John Knox - Romanism in form and Romanism in substance are both Romanism. And that it is only a matter of time before one (form or substance) leads to the other.
I am not so sure. After all CoE went in that direction anyway.
When William III (a Calvinist) was crowned he commented on the whole proceedings to his (Dutch) advisor, that it was almost worse than a catholic feast, with all the pomp, decorations and rites.
I would not say "hardly." There mere fact that a bishop is answerable to anyone means that the church is not independent of political control, and conscience can be a crime. If by olden days here, you mean the 1300s, a hundred years into the Reformation is a whole new ballgame.
Obviously for the king that was the whole point. And yeah I meant prior to the investiture argument, when the king could appoint his own bishops.
The whole separation of church and state was a hot issue, but the Catholicism angle wasn't the main driver.
Do you think people were less sensitive to nuance in political indicators in the 1600s than they are today? Look at how easy it is for some politician to get called a Nazi today, and to have one flippant remark put violent people in the streets and cause legislative resolutions in protest. Charles was an object of scrutiny and suspicion and, at best, did nothing to alleviate fear of Romansim.
Yes I do think that. Nowadays you can get people on the streets with pussyhats. In those days you had witch-hunts, big amounts of hangings and no one batted an eye.
 

Code Blue

Ad Honorem
Feb 2015
3,980
Caribbean
#39
I am not so sure. After all CoE went in that direction anyway.
When William III (a Calvinist) was crowned he commented on the whole proceedings to his (Dutch) advisor, that it was almost worse than a catholic feast, with all the pomp, decorations and rites.
That doesn't surprise me. The rise of Protestantism in the Dutch states preceded that of Britain by about....50 years? .

All in all, one coronation ceremony is kind of a piddling detail. I am talking of the entire system of government, of how the religion that a people have determine what type of government they will tolerate or demand. As a sufficient number of people would got their hands on the Bible, the less they would tolerate Romanism. That's why the Vatican spent so many years keeping the book out of people's hands. Similarly, James I did not advocate that Britain simply adopt the Calvin Bible (a good translation of the right texts, but containing margin notes about getting rid of wicked Kings). How do you rule people who think it is better to die than to bend their knees to a wicked man? With the "consent of the governed?" Isn't that the exact problem the Romans had which caused Constantine to figure out - if we can't beat them, better we join them. It took until Marin Luther for the Bible to make a comeback.

The beheading of Charles is an important historical benchmark, the other end of which is James II and Glorious Revolution. It is a changing of the guard, and freedom of thought surely brought along some technological advancement lacking in Europe the preceding thousand years.

Yes I do think that. Nowadays you can get people on the streets with pussyhats. In those days you had witch-hunts, big amounts of hangings and no one batted an eye.
Well, first you jumped 300 years in one direction. Now you jump 400 years in the other. If you are arguing that the Reformation has petered out. It surely has. Men with the Bible in one hand and sword of just defense in the other, who cannot be enslaved have indeed been replaced by genetically-altered pussyhats. lol
 
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Willempie

Ad Honorem
Jul 2015
5,212
Netherlands
#40
That doesn't surprise me. The rise of Protestantism in the Dutch states preceded that of Britain by about....50 years? .
Depends on how you look at it. Henry 8 was way before Protestantism made big inroads here.
All in all, one coronation ceremony is kind of a piddling detail. I am talking of the entire system of government, of how the religion that a people have determine what type of government they will tolerate or demand. As a sufficient number of people would got their hands on the Bible, the less they would tolerate Romanism. That's why the Vatican spent so many years keeping the book out of people's hands. Similarly, James I did not advocate that Britain simply adopt the Calvin Bible (a good translation of the right texts, but containing margin notes about getting rid of wicked Kings). How do you rule people who think it is better to die than to bend their knees to a wicked man? With the "consent of the governed?" Isn't that the exact problem the Romans had which caused Constantine to figure out - if we can't beat them, better we join them. It took until Marin Luther for the Bible to make a comeback.
Look the period from 1500 to 1650 was religious mayhem in western Europe. The whole problem for an area that was protestant (anything other than catholic) for rulers was how to get/keep control. You wouldn't want some raving lunatics claiming some new Jerusalem (like Anabaptists in Munster) or have nobles be disobedient because they are from another religion (France). So the king wanted to use the CoE/S to avoid both those things. He went into a direction that had the most appeal to him. His opponents in the beginning claimed catholic sympathies, but when he supported the Huguenots that argument was mainly for the puritans.
The beheading of Charles is an important historical benchmark, the other end of which is James II and Glorious Revolution. It is a changing of the guard, and freedom of thought surely brought along some technological advancement lacking in Europe the preceding thousand years.
Agree with the first part, less so with the last. It is not like Britain was the sole supplier of science and freedom of thought was big elsewhere as well, like Italy and Holland.
Well, first you jumped 300 years in one direction. Now you jump 400 years in the other. If you are arguing that the Reformation has petered out. It surely has. Men with the Bible in one hand and sword of just defense in the other, who cannot be enslaved have indeed been replaced by pussyhats. lol
Uhm you asked if people nowadays were more or less politically sensitive, not me.