King James I- Originally King James IV of Scotland, inherits the throne of England. He commissions a version of the Bible, later called The King James Bible
King Charles I- The son of James I, who is beheaded by Parliament led by Oliver Cromwell, his death technically marks the end of the English Civil war.
Oliver Cromwell- Lord Protector of the English Commonwealth. His Parliament accused Charles I with tyranny and thus began the English Civil war. Cromwell becomes the head of state after the execution of Charles I.
King Charles II- The son of Charles I. He is banished from the English Commonwealth after the death of his father. He returns to London after the death and resignation of the Cromwells and restores the monarchy to England.
King James II- The second son of Charles I. He assumes the throne after the death of his brother. He is Roman Catholic and pushes pro-Catholic legislation.
Queen Mary I and King William III- Mary I was the daughter of James II. She and her husband William III were invited to take the throne from her father after his pro-catholic leanings were proving problematic to the Church of England and Parliament.
Death of Queen Elizabeth I and the ascension of King James I 1603
English Reformation- The English Reformation is marked by struggles over religion. At this point many English Subjects. The struggle was over how much like the Catholic Church the Church of England was perceived to be.
Continuation of the European Colonial Age- Began as a search for trade routes to the “Far East.” As well as the beginning of English Colonization of America. Jamestown is founded in 1607.
The first English Newspaper begins in 1621.
James I dies and his son Charles I inherits the throne in 1625.
Charles I and Scotland in conflict over the Church of England pushing its way into Scotland. This is called the Bishops’ War in 1639.
The English Civil War begins in 1642. It is between supporters of the Crown and supporters of Parliament. Those in support of Parliament have issued grievances against the King for abuses of power. In 1649 Parliament executes Charles I and the ends the Monarchy. Oliver Cromwell is voted the head of the English Commonwealth state. The fighting continues. In 1658 Cromwell dies and passes the Lord Protectorship to his son Richard, who does not hold the title long. Charles II, the son of the previous King returns to London and the monarchy is restored in 1660.
Charles II dies and his brother James II inherits the throne in 1685.
Due to James II’s pro-Catholic views, the bishops of the Church of England ask for Mary, the daughter of James II and her husband William III to take the throne in 1688. William III marches on London as James II retreats to Ireland where he is crowned King of Ireland in 1689. Mary I dies in 1694, leaving William III as monarch in England.
Art and Authors:
Shakespeare- The famous playwright, a member of the Lord Chamberlain’s men who were the leading company in London until Queen Elizabeth died. Later he was a part of the King’s Men, whose patron was King James I.
Marlowe- A contemporary of Shakespeare, a playwright. He was a part of the University Wits, a group of playwrights and writers who were college educated and became popular playwrights.
Ben Jonson- A famous masque writer to King James I. He had previously written for the Lord Chamberlain’s men along with Shakespeare. His life was rife with religious turmoil and persecution because of it. He was forced to spend time with Church of England Scholars to change his Catholic beliefs.
Molière- A French playwright. Known for his comedy of manners and criticism of social structure. His more famous plays are, Tartuffe and The Imaginary Invalid.
Diego Velazquez- The Spanish court painter, he is called one of the most influential painters of the century. He painted in realistic style and was praised for his observant eye.
Rembrandt van Rijn- A Dutch painter who is known for his self-portraits, allegorical subjects, use of shadow and realistic stylings.
The Baroque and the French Neoclassic are the main artistic movements of the century. The baroque movement is characterized by “by use of complex forms, bold ornamentation, and the juxtaposition of contrasting elements often conveying a sense of drama, movement, and tension” according to Merriam-Webster. The French Neoclassic movement is characterized by a return to classical Greek and Roman styles.
Religious /Social Movements:
The Majority of England at the time was some form of protestant Christian. People either fell under the header of the Church of England or were Puritans. The Church of England believed that the monarch was the head of the church, much like a Pope. Puritans wanted to purify the Church of England of any parts they believed to be left from the Catholic Church that they believed to be corrupt and not befitting the gospel. This included having a figure head at the head of the church.
The Enlightenment begins, this was the search for a “universal truth” (Hudson 23) This was the search for the truth of the universe, the truth of humans, the search was for an explanation of everything. It was a more philosophic movement.
The Scientific Revolution began this century as well. It run concurrently with the Enlightenment period, and though similar in looking for truth, the scientific revolution was focused on finding empirical evidence of the truths, not philosophy. Newton, Decarte and Locke are credited with being involved in this movement. One of the greatest contributions of this movement is the scientific method, a series of steps and checks used in scientific fields to prove a theory.
Deism begins in this century which is the idea that God made the world and then left. This comes as a religious philosophy during the Enlightenment period.