Sixteenth-Century Writing Assignment (L20)

What were the causes and consequences of the Spanish revolt that occurred after Charles left to be crowned Holy Roman Emperor?

The Spanish revolt had been a long time in the making, but it all really began when Charles V, whom had been in control of many European states, came to be the King of Spain in 1516. Not only could he not speak Spanish early on in his reign, but under the belief that people from the Low Countries were more advanced, he also had brought comrades from his homeland to serve as government officials in Spain. As one can imagine, many were hesitant to accept Charles V as their King. In 1519, Charles was to be crowned Holy Roman Emperor, and in 1520 he leaves Spain in the hands of a man named Adrian while he is away. The consequences of this being that, during his absence, a relentless revolt breaks out, with the goal of establishing a league of cities to keep an eye on the king. As the citizens rage on however, the Spanish Nobility decides not to support this revolt, due to the growing realization that this could actually turn into what they called a class-war. Not wanting to be subjected to this, they joined the Royal Officials in stopping the revolt. Following such events, Charles V uses the revolt to justify ruling Spain with an absolutist outlook.

What were the causes of the Dutch revolt? What was the “demonstration effect”?

The main causes of the Dutch revolt were Philip’s absolutist methods of ruling, his violent outbursts, and absurdly high tax rates being imposed on the people. More specifically, Philip left neither Protestants or Catholics in his support after a display of strength through a 10,000 man strong army. Following this, the Duke of Alba imposed a ludicrous new 10% sales tax, which devastated the already crumbling economy. Rebellion broke out in full force.
The demonstration effect was the effect of behavior on individuals set into motion by the observation of the actions of others and their following consequences or rewards. This is, in other words, leading by example. The demonstration effect in terms of the Dutch Republic specifically meant no King, secure property rights, rule of law, religious toleration, intellectual freedom, and economic prosperity. The economic decay of Spain, for example, was a negative demonstration effect.

Who were the contenting parties in the French wars of religion? What was the St. Bartholomew’s Day Massacre? What was the Edict of Nantes?

The parties involved in the French wars of religion were the Protestants, the Huguenots, and the Catholics.
The St. Bartholomew’s Day Massacre was the butchering of thousands of Huguenots by mobs in Paris and other provinces. This had been caused by an idea that Catherine had in her head that she and the King were going to be seized by Huguenots. In the midst of her fears, she approved the murder of Huguenot leader Admiral Coligny, and it was coordinated by the Duke of Guise. Things escalated from there and the massacre broke out so strongly against Huguenots that the forces of the people couldn’t be stopped for days.
The Edict of Nantes was issued by Henry IV, which granted freedom of conscience and absolute freedom of worship to the people in order to bring peace.

Describe the religious policy of Elizabeth I.

Elizabeth I’s religious policies were very lenient, and some contemporaries even suspected she claimed no religion whatsoever. Some aspects of Catholicism did appeal to her, but in reality she only cared much for one thing; her power. Elizabeth could not abide subjection to the papacy because she believed there could only be one true ruler. This being said, any persons going over her head to the Pope for anything could be considered treasonous. All in all, Elizabeth would leave one to do as they please as long as her authority was recognized, respected and honored.

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