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How Successfully Did James I Deal with Religious Problems During His Reign?

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Submitted By ambitiousamah
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How successfully did James I deal with religious problems during his reign?
In early stages of his reign James’ focus on progressive negotiation and tolerance was effective in limiting religious divisions. However, after the outbreak of the Thirty Years’ war, such tensions intensified and James’ strategies brought limited success as people’s religious opinions became polarised and people were less inclined to negotiate with him. It can be argued that James was not so successful in resolving religious problems throughout his reign although, I think that he was quite successful in doing just this as he was persistent in keeping his philosophy of peace.
James was more successful in dealing with religious divisions due to his negotiation and emphatic actions towards the problems. For example with the Hampton Court Conference which was developed from the Millenary Petition, James was willing to listen from their standpoint which showed him to be much understanding of the circumstances. Even though little change was brought to the table, James was able to publish the common prayer book in 1611 which pleased many of the Puritans. Furthermore, James’ response to the Gunpowder plot was abstained in juxtaposition (in contrast) with his predecessors. This pursued a balance within the church and illustrated James’ disposition for reconciliation. Moreover, his appointments also portrayed his emphatic ways to solve religious divisions. For instance his appointment of Puritan, George Abbot as Archbishop of Canterbury in 1611 which was the most prestigious positon of the church. His appoints demonstrated a state of orthodoxy within the church.
On the other hand there was a threshold to James’ success in an endeavour to appease everyone as he did displease others. His benevolence with the Catholics after the Gunpowder plot had baffled Parliament as James’ actions were less expected of. Additionally, the marriage negotiations with Charles and the Spanish Infanta would have bamboozled Parliament even more because they were certainly worried about Catholicism becoming much grander and especially domestically. Furthermore, the Puritans felt threatened by the canons of 1604 for instance; “all clergy must subscribe to all thirty-nine articles and everything in the Prayer Book”. However, they felt malcontent with this situation as it went against what they stood for. James emphasis on conciliation with everyone definitely did lead to the alienation of particular groups, predominately those of a more conservative persona. From this approach, James was showing a cumulative nature and how it was ahead of some of his subjects. However, James was still successful. ADD POSITIVES. Therefore, although there were limitations to his success, James was able to still bring out success from them.…...

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