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How well did James and Charles deal with religious affairs in England, relationships with Parliament and factions in the period 1603-1629?

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How well did James and Charles deal with religious affairs in England, relationships with Parliament and factions in the period 1603-1629? Between 1603 and 1629, English government was generally well run and certainly James was a great success in terms of religion. After 1625, Charles showed less confidence in handling politics and government and this is shown by the beginning of his Personal Rule in 1629. James had a mixed record with Parliament, Charles had a disastrous one. Faction was not a strong point for either King: both Kings failed to live up to Elizabeth's highly successful approach. Within four years of James death, Charles had quickly managed to undo all of his father's good work with regards religion. Religion became a political matter again as Charles pushed towards Arminianism causing the elite to fear a return to Catholicism. James on the other hand had been tolerant with both faiths and upon his arrival from Scotland, Puritan ministers were optimistic in presenting him with the Millinery Petition in 1603. ...read more.


He was a hugely influential figure with regards to Charles religious policies and consequently also caused much of the dispute with Parliament, as they feared he was dangerously close to restoring Catholicism. The appeal of Arminianism to Charles is understandable because of his fastidious nature and love of beauty and his position regarding religion was made even more unstable by the influence of his Catholic wife, Henrietta Maria of France and her permission to worship openly at Court. Leading Armenians contributed to the unstable parliamentary relations by defending his behaviour over the forced loan and argued that his subjects must obey even an unjust King. The promotion of Armenians to positions of power was rapid and Calvinists were progressively excluded from important matters and the elite's fears were confirmed when he began to assemble an army to impose the new prayer book in Scotland. Unfortunately, James relationships with Parliament were not nearly so stable as his religious affairs. His inconsistent yet strong relations with Parliament, even if they were not always good ones often carried wise decisions, such as in his first decision to keep Robert Cecil. ...read more.


Both Kings were not brilliantly successful when it came to faction, although admittedly Charles was slightly better. James' favouritism began with Robert Carr, Earl of Somerset who was a considerable influence but lacked the means to handle it. When he married into the Howard faction however, Parliament tried to entice the King's favour away from Carr towards George Villiers, a decision they would come to regret in the future. Villiers did not result in the immediate fall of Carr and it took the Overbury scandal to remove him from Court. James court was raucous and undignified and came undre much criticism in contrast to the majestic one of Elizabeth's and the English elite often felt alienated by the strong presence of Scottish factions. The bawdiness and catamites of James' court was replaced by Charles' formal dignified and elegant one but his major downfall was Buckinghams continued dominance to the point where he was assassinated. After this the court was kept at arms length and Henrietta Maria became a closer influence to the King, so Parliament had unintentionally caused their own problems again. James was indulgent with factions but C's major flaw was to allow B to continue to dominate. ...read more.

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