Century Of Revolution Term Paper

Length: 3 pages Sources: 1 Subject: Mythology - Religion Type: Term Paper Paper: #60013701 Related Topics: French Revolution, Catholic Church, American Revolution, Church
Excerpt from Term Paper :

¶ … Revolution

Christopher Hill's The Century of Revolution 1603-1714 details the transformations in English economic, political, ideological, and religious life. The author states in his introductory chapter, "The years between 1603 and 1714 were perhaps the most decisive in English history" because those years signified the dawn of the modern age and the rise of the English empire (13). Hill divides the various changes in English society, which would come to transform American society as well, into issues related to economic theory, political philosophy, and the realm of religion and ideas. The Century of Revolution is broken up into three chronological sections: 1603-40; 1640-60; 1660-88; and 1688-1714. The realm of religion and ideas encapsulates the realms of economics and politics because of the widespread influence of religion on culture. Therefore, the theme of transformation can best be illustrated through Hill's depiction of the changes occurring in religion and ideology in seventeenth century England.

From 1603 to 1640, the local parish served as a "real social unit," according to Hill (73). The community rallied around its local church in matters of finance and in matters of state as well as in matters of spirituality. As a public forum, the church enabled assemblies...


The Church was a wealthy and powerful symbol in each community. Therefore, during the early half of the seventeenth century, the Church was a powerful local political force; state and church were closely linked. Reflective of the state as a whole, the Church was expressly hierarchical and non-democratic.

Puritanism represented a wholesale detachment from Church hierarchy, as the Puritan ideal was one of social equity and egalitarianism as well as personal asceticism. Hill notes that the English Civil War was essentially a Puritan revolution. Religion transformed politics and social life as well. For example, one of the ways the Puritans transformed the nature of worship during these decades was via the advent of the preaching tradition, which became one of the hallmarks of American religious society. Puritanism sparked the American Revolution and gave rise to the unique character of American society. Hill states that although the Puritan revolution ultimately failed to take root in England, it closely paralleled the political philosophies that underlie the American and French Revolutions: usurping monarchic authority and spawning governments by and for the people.

Between 1660 and 1688, the political authority of the Church waned in England, as Parliamentary power over local parishes increased. At the same time, a rise in interest and acceptance of science and other matters foreign to Church doctrine…

Sources Used in Documents:

Works Cited

Hill, Christopher. The Century of Revolution 1603-1714. London: Cardinal, 1974.

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