Consider the role of religion in seventeenth-century English politics.
Religion played an important role in seventeenth-century politics, as an increasingly Anglican British monarchy clashed sharply with a growing Puritan movement in the nation.
King James I moved the country toward a form of Anglicanism considered more "popish" than the Protestantism of Elizabeth I. Charles I accelerated this process by appointing William Laud as the Archbishop of Canterbury, a moved that enraged Puritans, who believed Laud would reintroduce Roman Catholicism. Laud jailed Puritans who spoke out against him and also fined Puritans who did not attend Anglican Church services. All of this fanned tensions at a time when much of the country was becoming disgusted with the excesses of the royal court.
Puritans sided against the king in the English Civil War and were instrumental in having Charles I beheaded. They abolished the monarchy for a period—a radical change at that time.
check Approved by eNotes Editorial