What were the effects of the English Revolution?

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pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The event that is most commonly called the “English Revolution” is the one that happened in 1688 and is better known as the Glorious Revolution.  The main effect of this revolution was that the English monarchy came to have much less power than previously while Parliament came to be more powerful.

At least since the signing of Magna Charta in 1215, the English had been trying to reduce the powers of the crown.  This was not a constant process, but it recurred from time to time.  By the late 1600s, people had become more likely to challenge royal authority.  This was partly because of religion as King James II was a Catholic who tried to further the interests of his church while Parliament was largely Protestant.  It was also due to the ideas of the Enlightenment, which held that rulers existed to care for and protect their people and that government should exist by the consent of the people.  For these reasons, Parliament overthrew the monarchy and offered the crown to William of Orange, but only on a number of conditions.

With this, the Glorious Revolution had occurred and the crown had been weakened.  The monarch no longer ruled “by the grace of God.”  Instead, the monarch ruled because Parliament had invited him to rule.  This vastly increased the power of Parliament and greatly reduced the power of the monarch. 

thetall eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The Glorious Revolution of 1688 and the English Civil Wars (1640-1660) are both referred to as the English Revolution despite the fact that they were separate events with different outcomes. For the purposes of answering the question, both outcomes will be discussed.

The Glorious Revolution was an event that finalized the changes in the English administration. King James II was replaced by William III and Mary II, which also marked the end of absolute monarchy and the start of a constitutional monarchy.  The monarchy ceased to be the center of political power through the establishment of a parliamentary system and a constitution.

The English Civil Wars marked the shift from feudalism to capitalism, which was spearheaded by the bourgeois class. In feudalism, land holdings were offered to the people in exchange for their service. Capitalism, on the other hand, emphasized private ownership of land and other resources.

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