What might have happened in England and her North American colonies had the Glorious Revolution not taken place?

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jameadows eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The Glorious Revolution of 1688 took place when the British Parliament invited the Protestant William of Orange and his wife, Mary, to take over Britain and depose the Catholic king, James II. In return, William and Mary agreed to give up some of the king's prerogatives or rights in favor of more power for the Parliament. This ended the period of instability in the monarchy and resulted in increased freedom for the American colonies. While the British monarchs strengthened their control over Ireland, they basically allowed the American colonies a greater degree of freedom that has been termed "salutary neglect." As a result, the colonies were accustomed to this freedom and reacted negatively when increased debt after the French and Indian War of 1754-1763 caused the British king, George III, to try to tighten his grip on the colonies and control their trade.

If the Glorious Revolution had not occurred, England might have continued to wrestle with religious strife related to the monarchy (as the Glorious Revolution resulted in a decree that the English monarch could not be Catholic). The Parliament might not have become as powerful as it did in Britain. In addition, if the Glorious Revolution had not occurred, the colonies may not have started the American Revolution, as they would not have been used to such a great degree of political and economic freedom.