Social and Economic Consequences of the Henrician Reformation
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The Reformation in England was an act of state. The initiative came from Henry VIII, who wanted to solve his matrimonial problems. The King had the enthusiastic support of an anti-clerical majority in the House of Commons (representing the landed gentry and the merchants) and of the propertied classes in the economically advanced south and east of England. Overt opposition came only from the more feudal north (the Pilgrimage of Grace in 1536). The Reformation was not motivated by theological considerations: Henry VIII burnt Protestants as well as opponents of the royal supremacy. Some supporters of the Reformation were heretics; but the wide expansion of Protestantism in England may have been a consequence, not a cause, of the Reformation.
KeywordsSixteenth Century Social Revolution Enterprising Institution Land Transfer Henry VIII
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