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

Why Did The Leveller Movement Fail To Achieve Its Political And Religious Objectives In The Search For Settlement After The Civil War?

Extracts from this document...


Why Did The Leveller Movement Fail To Achieve Its Political And Religious Objectives In The Search For Settlement After The Civil War? As the Civil War drew to an end, the emergence of many radical groups became noticeable. The collapse of authority meant that they could now come of hiding, debate in public and develop their ideas. One of the radical groups that emerged were, as named by their opponents, the 'Levellers', as they wished to level out society. They had many ideas on how they thought society should be won and these political and religious objectives were put forward to Parliament in 'The Agreement of the People' in 1647. This document was much more radical than those before it. In terms of political aims, the Levellers wanted to extend the franchise and achieve manhood suffrage, as they believed that everyone had equal rights to vote. They wanted to reform the legal system to give equality to everyone before the law and achieve recognition of people's fundamental rights and liberties. ...read more.


Also, they were neither numerous nor aggressive enough. A combination of these factors meant that they could easily be defeated and that their policies were not implemented. The Levellers also failed to capture the army, another key factor that contributed to the end of the Levellers. Although some of the rank and file support them, as they too would benefit from some of their objectives, a lot of the army were more interested in pay and conditions than in theoretical schemes of government. They also had no support from the officers, the so-called 'Grandees', like Cromwell and Ireton as their power could be curbed by the Levellers ideas. This meant they had little support in Parliament. Another reason that the Levellers had little support in Parliament was because the rich and wealthy landowners felt threatened by the Levellers. If the Levellers achieved their objectives they felt that they would lose power, money and land and there would be a major destruction of social order. ...read more.


The Levellers emerged at a time when there was severe economic hardship and this made their policies attractive to the working class people, who would benefit from their reforms, but as the economic situation improved support for the Levellers started to decline. This was a major factor in their failure, once again, due to lack of support. In the words of Brailsford 'it [the Leveller Movement] was neither defeated nor suppressed. It faded out because it had nothing to do'. This is still an idea argued by historians today. In any case, the Levellers failed to achieve their political and religious aims in search for a settlement after the war. This was due to a combination of factors, but mainly because of the lack of support, either due to opposition to their objectives or due to improvement in economic conditions. Either way, if there had been more support for the Levellers throughout the country they may have been able to achieve what they had set out to do. ...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 Politics 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 Politics essays

  1. The colonial factor in the Nigerian civil war (1967-1970)

    of that part of the country they could trust, that is, the north. The military power being necessary to ensure a stable government of a large country the size of Nigeria made up as it is of diverse and heterogeneous elements.

  2. The British Suffragette movement.

    replaced men in traditionally male occupations during World War I that ultimately led to the granting of the vote to women. These views are now being challenged by some feminist historians who argue that the suffragette movement in Edwardian Britain helped to harness a spirit of revolt among women against their secondary status in society.

  1. personal exercis programme

    I also applied the 'Time' principle to the circuit training. I exercised for forty seconds, in each station, with only twenty five seconds recovery time. I also kept the frequency the same; circuit training twice in the week. Fitness Testing After completing my six week PEP I re-tested my muscular endurance and cardiovascular fitness.

  2. What was Chartism and why did it fail

    He himself was a sympathiser of the movement but was also called to be a special constable this produced a quandary within himself with the way Chartism progressed and ultimately fell short of its goals. In the 21st century it is difficult to understand why their demands were not met as we take such rights for granted.

  1. Devolution is not a "constitutional settlement" but a dynamic (and potentially destabilising) process. ...

    This will change now we have our own Parliament devoted to getting the best deal for Scotland and giving us a real say in the running of our country."4 He went on to comment, "The independent Parliament that I seek would put even more power in Scotland's hands.

  2. The development of political thought - John Locke

    "Whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these Ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it, and to institute new Government..." Revolution, however, is an extreme way in which to deal with bad government.

  1. WWI, The Twenty-One Demands and The May Fourth Movement

    By controlling this province, Japan was provided with a base from which to launch a total subjugation on the Chinese nation. Furthermore, Yuan Shikai offered no resistance to the Japanese, paving the way for the formal control of China by means of the so called 'Twenty-One Demands"5.

  2. Russia - political past, present and future

    It was a time for Russia, now an independent country, to form a democracy. Russia now was faced with a difficult dilemma of democracy formation. Would it be possible to apply democratic principles to the nation that over centuries developed an autocratic mentality?

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