England did not begin to face a crisis during Edward VIs reign To what extent to do you agree?

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Dan Seamarks 6.6

“England did not begin to face a crisis during Edward VI’s reign” – To what extent to do you agree?

England during Edward VI’s reign was, at times, very weak and unstable. However, its fortunes were turned around sharply. Although England could be seen as being saved from crisis during Edward’s latter years it did, nonetheless, begin to face a crisis.

The foreign affairs of Edward’s early reign weighed down heavily on England and only added to the crisis it faced. Somerset’s initial ideas towards Scotland seemed to be idealistic yet possible, securing a royal marriage. However, the attacks on France, where the English had been since the end of Henry VIII’s, were likely to end any hope of a relationship as the Scottish were loyal French supporters. Somerset’s blindness in this situation certainly pointed toward crisis because it appeared as though the English were clutching at any possible hope of securing a victory in Scotland, almost attempting to finish Henry’s left overs. The foreign policy of England only through it further into crisis when Somerset failed to estimate the cost of fortifying castles after defeating the Scottish as the battle of Pinkie in September 1547. This only extenuated the problems England faced because Somerset was using his attention and the countries money, which they didn’t have, on something that most people knew probably wouldn’t work. However, after Northumberland takes over, foreign policy is once again used effectively. After facing so many dire situations at home he used his influence to make relationships neutral once again. He finally ended the fortification of Boulogne, where the English had been since Henry VII invaded in 1544, by cleverly selling it back to the French. This could, in contrast, show that England did not begin to face a crisis in Edward’s reign because the countries sour relationships with other countries were quickly being repaired. Furthermore Northumberland was able to create a more stable relationship with Scotland by leaving the garrisons. By agreeing to leave, though stating they’d return if provoked, it shows that Edward’s reign faced little crisis because relationships broken over many years were able to be at least repaired to a point where countries could be amicable.  Overall foreign policies seem to strongly suggest that, actually, England did begin to face a crisis during Edward’s reign because most dealings were rushed and developed with little intelligence.

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Furthermore England certainly seemed to have begun to face a crisis during the reign of Edward VI. Religion in England was really a mess at this time, starting with the dissolution of Chantry Chapels in 1547 and finishing with protestant England. Many common people felt jittery in the mid-1500s because religious change was constant and radical. Somerset’s ‘Book of Common Prayer’ in 1549, a strong protestant document, led to religious rebellions, such as the Western Rebellion, as well as a wholly negative reaction from the commoners. This feeling was only amplified by ‘The Act of Uniformity’ in 1549 which banned ...

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