TO WHAT EXTENT WAS THERE A “MID TUDOR CRISIS” DURING THE REIGNS OF EDWARD VI AND MARY I?

2006 WordsSep 17, 20019 Pages
TO WHAT EXTENT WAS THERE A "MID TUDOR CRISIS" DURING THE REIGNS OF EDWARD VI AND MARY I? "The mid-Tudor crisis" is a term often used by historians to describe the reigns of Edward VI (1547-1553) and Mary I (1553-1558). This period can be seen as a crisis, due to the fact that there were so many problems financially, socially, religiously and constitutionally, which led to rebellions, and placed the country in a very unstable position. It is clear that many of the origins of this 'crisis' have their roots in the reign of Henry VIII. He left a very difficult legacy to his successors, but it must be remembered that Somerset provoked the problems already in existence and Northumberland and Mary I then had the difficult task of resolving them.…show more content…
Northumberland also established the Privy Coffer to provide contingency funds. Mary herself reformed the customs and introduced the book of rates in 1558. There was also, as Guy perceives a shift towards 'national finance'. Although the period 1552-8 is still described as a crisis, it must be remembered that there were some productive reforms and that the situation did not decline. Historians such as Pollard who see government as "sterile, impotent and unproductive" at this time do not seem to have taken into account these positive financial developments. It is evident that Henry was at the root of the financial problems and that Somerset exacerbated them. However the positive achievements of Northumberland and Mary must not be forgotten. Somerset lacked charm and made enemies easily. His arrogance and pride created resentment. He was a weak administrator who refused to listen to the experts. The crisis came for Somerset, in 1559 when he failed to deal decisively with rebellions in the west and in Norfolk (which had been partly caused by his own policies). As Dale Hoak points out "his colleagues decided to get rid of him at this point not because he supported the poor but because he was incompetent". When Northumberland came into power, even though his reforms were far more extreme, with no possibility of alternative

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