• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How important was Roman Catholicism in plots against Queen Elizabeth I and the Gunpowder Plot, compared to other factors?

Extracts from this document...


How important was Roman Catholicism in plots against Queen Elizabeth I and the Gunpowder Plot, compared to other factors? There were many plots against Queen Elizabeth I and James I, including the Ridolfi Plot (1570), the Babington Plot (1586), and the Gunpowder Plot (1605). English Catholics where mainly responsible for these plots. Why did the plots take place? On the 5th November 1605 there was an attempt by a small group of Catholics to blow up the Houses of Parliament using barrels of gunpowder hidden in a cellar underneath that building. Included in this group were Robert Catesby, Thomas Percy, Thomas Wintour and Guy Fawkes. The plotters were not only trying to destroy the English Government, but kill the king, James I. The reasons for this went back 80 years, to when Henry had broken away from the Catholic Church, and became the head of the Church of England, and in effect had declared himself to have no allegiance to the Pope. The Catholics where then oppressed savagely during the reign of Elizabeth I, who was a strong protestant, and punished Catholics severely, which led to the Ridolfi and Babington plots. ...read more.


This became impossible after 1587, as Elizabeth had Mary executed. The next in line was Mary's son, James VI of Scotland. The fact that that he was a protestant was a cause of concern to English Catholics. But he promised to be more tolerant of Catholics and acceded the English Throne in 1603. This, however cause false hope for the Catholics, as following the Hampton Court Conference in 1604 James reintroduced harsh penalties for Catholicism THE QUESTION OF WHO WANTED POWER AND WHY When James I arrived in England from Scotland, he soon discovered that his income would not be enough for his needs and obligations. Before James, English monarchs had grown used to asking the members of Parliament to grant them money. James disliked this idea, but it was the only option. As the Parliament was mainly made up of Puritans (a stricter form of protestant), it was hard for his to keep his promise to the Catholics, as the Parliament would have been less than happy to grant money while he was tolerant of Catholics, and he had to try to stay on their side. ...read more.


How was the gunpowder moved across London from the Tower of London to Westminster (at least two miles distant) without anyone noticing? The River Thames could not have been used because the gunpowder could have become damp and useless, and thirty-six barrels would have been a substantial amount to move without any suspicion. Why were men who were known to be Catholics allowed to rent out a house so close to the Houses of Parliament? 36 barrels of Gunpowder would not have been easy to hide, so how did they get it all into the cellar of the Houses of Parliament, they were sure to have some security. Also, when the Monteagle letter was discovered, why did everybody claim to not understand the message, until James saw it, and he understood immediately? Could it have been so that they could save the Government day (and the King) at the last moment? We must consider whether the Goverment set up the whole plot, giving them a reason to crack down even harder on Catholics, as well as proving their worthiness to the King. The Foreign Policy of the Papacy Therefore, I believe that Roman Catholicism was very important in the Gunpowder Plot, as it ties in with each of the separate factors. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE History Projects section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE History Projects essays

  1. The Gunpowder Plot

    Soon others joined the group, such as Robert Wintour, Christopher Wright, Robert Keyes and Thomas Bates. Later on more people joined: John Grant, Ambrose Rookwood, Francis Tresham and Everard Digby. These were the 13 conspirators in the Gunpowder Plot. The Conspirators would plant a bomb in the cellar beneath the

  2. From where did Elizabeth face the greatest challenge to her aims in the framing ...

    Elton argues that particularly significant on a document that is supposed to represent the unity of a radically protestant group of MPs is the presence of five figures closely connected with conservatism and even Catholicism including Henry Goodere who was to be an ardent supporter of Mary Queen of Scots.5


    Source two suggests that Guy Had to be forced into "confessing" this is suggested because the degree of torture had to increase. However it also indicates that the king did not know about the treason so had to force it out of Guy.

  2. How useful is a visit to the Tudor parts of Hampton Court to find ...

    The weaved tapestries were hung covering all the walls in the Great Hall. These tapestries are still in place and although faded are just how Henry had seen them. As you enter the great hall you come through screens made of wood panelling with the letters A and B carved upon them standing for Anne Boleyn, Henry's second wife.

  1. Was Elizabeth I a Good Queen

    King Philip asked to marry her which shows that he must have appreciated her actions as a queen (even if it simply was a ploy to gain him power over England). Privateers like Drake started intercepting Spanish treasure ships from the Americas and the economy and lifestyle of many English people got better.

  2. What Factors Led to a Roman Emperor

    The emperor himself played a substantial role in the cult of the living emperor; however there had long been something divine about the ability to succeed. Many of the celebrations on behalf of the emperor were the result of the provinces' own local initiative9.

  1. Elizabeth I: How successfully did she tackle the problems of her reign?

    She was next in line for the throne if Elizabeth did not provide an heir. Mary was a devout Catholic, and many Catholics saw her as the rightful queen. Protestants and Puritans in England did not like this. After the Battle of Langside, Mary fled to England to seek refuge from Elizabeth.

  2. French and American Revolutions Compared

    About 50000 Americans died and about 1240 British sailors died in battle, and 18500 sailors died of a disease known as scurvy. Also 7554 Germans died, and no reliable statistics exist for the number of casualties among other groups, including Loyalists, British regulars, Native Americans, French and Spanish troops, and civilians.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work