1 Nostra Historia Issue #1 April 1, 2013 The Bloodless Revolution The Aristocratic Insurgence Before the French Revolution Stosunki między stanami i rządem podczas późnych czasów Średniowiecza w Państwie Krzyżackim Aurifera S.A.
2 THE BLOODLESS REVOLUTION Countdown to Invasion: April 23, 1685, to November 4, 1688, in England Revolutions are precious jewels that are produced dialectically through the progression and compounding of history. The Bloodless Revolution was an occurrence that was created because of a series of events that stretched over one hundred and fifty years. One can argue the Bloodless Revolution s seeds were procreated with the inception of the Anglican Church and then nourished by events that imperiled the existence of Britain and the Anglican Church, like the civil war, Cromwell s dictatorship, the popish plot, and the exclusion crisis. To discover the initial reasons for William of Orange s invasion on November 5 th, 1688, the immediate causes for the countdown to the invasion need to be examined by using the accession of James II as a starting point. After Charles II s death on February 6, 1685, James II, an open Catholic, ascended to the throne on April 23 rd, and immediately announced to the council that he wanted to uphold the Anglican Church and the kingdom. James II avowed he would not radically change the structure of England s laws by allowing Catholics and Dissenters to be elevated to municipal positions, contrary to his concealed motives of introducing Catholicism. James II converted to Catholicism in 1673 because passive Anglicanism did not stir his heart. James II s Catholic religion was a problem in England because Catholics had a heavy yoke placed on them because of the penal laws that made them second-class citizens. The laws against the Catholics were put in place to secure the preservation of Anglicanism; resultantly, Catholics were ridiculed and openly persecuted. James II s dogma made him believe the kingship was divine and sanctioned by God; he thought the king was placed on earth to be the representation of God s will, as expressed through the unlimited powers of absolutism. James II deemed power to make laws and legislation within the king s prerogative only, and because Parliament bilked that power, James II felt the power ordained by God to the king was jeopardized. James believed Parliament should be powerless and granted advisory powers only because kings only answer to God, not to the people. When James II was made king, he believed he was bestowed a sacred duty to promote Catholicism because he survived the exclusion crisis. 1 He believed God restored a Catholic king in Anglican England to erode Anglicanism and reinstate Catholicism, not by force but by consented conversion. James II believed within a few years the populace would convert to Catholicism because Anglicanism was not filled with the warmth of God and as appealing as Catholicism. James II did not want persecution of Anglicans to convert to Catholicism, but rather the establishment of Catholicism as a legal religion that would not be censured in law. James II believed Catholicism would overcome Anglicanism if repealing the Test Act ended the barring of Catholics from public life. 2 Other than the presumption of a sacred duty placed on himself to make Catholicism in England, James also felt the impulsion of Catholicism in England was necessary because his successor to the throne was his Protestant daughter, which was a problem because the possibility of a Catholic king mounting the throne in the future was slim. 3 Upon James II s accession, riots developed in Scotland and the West Country. In addition, Anglican priests who did 1 John Miller, James II (London: Metheun London, 2000), 125. The exclusion crisis ( ) was an attempt by Anglicans to exclude James, the Duke of York, from becoming king. 2 The Test Act (1673) forced all who held a government office to take an oath to the Anglican Church, Anglican rites, and subscribe to the declaration that denounced transubstantiation. In effect, the Test Act disqualified Catholics from holding office. 3 James II s wife, Queen Mary Beatrice, had many miscarriages in the past; she was believed to be incapable of producing additional children. 1
3 Additionally, James II eliminated the tenures of members in Parliament who did not agree with his politics. All of these highhanded acts made Anglicans look upon James II as a promoter of absolutism akin to Louis XIV s autocracy in France; as a consequence, Anglicans thought the manipulation of Parliament was an aggressive step to make absolutism and Catholicism prevail. In addition to recalling Parliament upon accession, James II declared he would continue to collect arrears that were due to Charles II from Louis XIV; Louis XIV paid the arrears and also gave an additional amount, to the dismay of Anglicans who surmised Louis XIV was in an alliance with James II. In March of 1685, the Anglican clergy deplored James II, Catholicism, and his politics because they endangered the Anglican Church. James II s Parliament in 1685 appropriated money to produce an expanded standing army; in reaction to it, the Committee of Religion issued a petition on May 26 to persecute Catholics so Catholics would not subvert the army. In conjunction with the Committee on Religion, the House of Commons made a bill that said Catholicism must be made powerless to sustain the Anglican Church, but James II did not allow the bill to be authorized. not accept James II as king preached anti-catholic sermons. The commotion was made because Anglicans believed Catholic monarchs were domineering and malicious men who were ambivalent to civil rights and liberties; Anglicans believed Catholics would convert them by the sword. When James called on Parliament later that year, James attempted to coax the heavily Anglican group to end the Test Act, but the Anglicans in Parliament vehemently opposed it because they felt the repeal of the Test Act would endanger the existence of Anglicanism. Subsequently, James II suspended the penal laws that excluded Dissenters and Catholics from holding office and worshipping, with his suspending power, in an attempt to pack Parliament with non-anglicans to end the Test Act and penal laws through a Parliamentary decree. 4 When James II was elevated to the position of king, William of Orange warmed relations with the James II because his claim to the throne could be endangered, along with Mary s claim, if James II instigated radical Catholic measures that produced a revolt. When James made demands to William of extinguishing military regiments that were under the Dutch Republic s power, which William of Orange wholly did not approve of, he was forced to comply to secure his claim to the throne and appear amicable to James II. Moreover, as an expression of submission and deference, William of Orange promised James II to confer with him on all foreign policy issues. Tension arose in the relationship in the spring of 1685 when Monmouth slipped through the Dutch Republic s trade barriers with four ships of arms and issued a declaration in England that stated he was king; William tried to stop the act by bypassing the legal steps in the Dutch Republic s constitu- 4 The suspending power engendered a law that was suspended inefficacious until reinstated. The suspending power and the dispensing power a power that allowed the king to nullify a law indefinitely were used since the Middle Ages by the earliest of the Tudors. The House of Commons pronounced the suspending power illegal in
4 tion, but was unable. 5 William of Orange offered three English regiments to stop Monmouth s rebellion, but the Dutch Republic s States General intervened contrarily because they sympathized with Monmouth. Of course, William offered the three ships to secure his future entitlement of kingship. The rebellion was put down with James II s royal army, and, as a result of the rebellion, James II was engendered conscious of the vulnerability of his military in case of a war. Accordingly, James II doubled his standing army to 19,000 men. 6 James II tried to make Parliament appropriate more money for the militia, but was turned down. Moreover, James II dispensed with the Test Act, and employed over a hundred Catholics in the military. When Louis made the Edict of Fontainebleau on October 8, and Anglicans wrote of the stories of the terrible persecution of Protestants in France, the first utterances of collusion between Louis XIV and James II were made that connected James II s military build up and Louis XIV s Edict of Fontainebleau to designs to conclude Protestantism. 7 Furthermore, the Edict of Fontainebleau had disastrous effects on the Dutch Republic s economy, especially the cloth and fishing industries. Dutch Protestants invested heavily into the French market, and because the Edict of Fontainebleau did not allow Protestants to own businesses, the Dutch economy was paralyzed. William of Orange felt war should be made on France because he felt the Edict of Fontainebleau because was an attempt to starve the Dutch into prostration and submission. In the autumn of 1685, James II wanted to call on Parliament again to revoke the Test Act and the penal laws, but the dissatisfaction seen in public from James II s policies of expanding the standing army and dispensing the Test Act were thought to be implicit in the outcome of recalling of Parliament, a denial of James II s goals. So, James II made an informal declaration that stated the members of Parliament who did not promote the end of the Test Act would be dismissed. When Parliament convened on November 9, grievances were promulgated that extrapolated peace was destroyed by standing armies, but James II retaliated by projecting the example of how the military was caught unprepared by Monmouth s rebellion as corroboration for maintaining a standing army. Then, on November 14 th, the House of Commons retorted against James II by rendering the appointment of Catholics to the military felonious, and on the 19 th members of Parliament reasserted the right to resuscitate the suspended penal laws to stabilize the encroachment of Catholics on Anglican powers. In disgust at Parliament s actions, James reciprocated against Parliament s incompliance by allowing toleration of Dissenters who served in the civil war. 8 The allowance of toleration to Dissenters was a step toward the dissolution of the political and religious demarcations of toleration, in that it caused the lines drawn out for persecution to be diluted. It also allowed the populace be drawn into religious toleration piecemeal. Thereupon, James II dismissed several members of Parliament in an attempt to make Parliament attuned to his political program. During this time, James II surfaced the proposition of consenting to reprieves for Catholics in the Scots Parliament, but the proposals were abrogated. James II went further with his Catholic policy in September by creating diplomatic relations with Rome, and by openly greeting Ferinando D Adda in November, the first envoy of the Pope. 9 Both acts were highly controversial, and stirred many to believe there was a plot to impose Catholicism in England. On January 1 st, 1686, James II met with the Jesuits and Catholic clergy of England, and told them of the necessity to spread Catholicism through missionary works. James II funded Jesuit schools and chapels throughout Britain to spread the faith, and rich Catholics became benefactors to the missionary cause. Old Anglican chapels were converted, and Catholics proliferated their faith enthusiastically. Feeling the dire need to spread Catholicism, Catholic priests offered mass in schoolhouses and town halls to spread their faith. Moreover, the missionary effort included producing pamphlets on Catholic doctrine and reasons why Charles II and James II converted. The missionary effort s goals were to vanquish all propaganda made against Catholicism, produce an amiable and honorable image of Catholicism, and make a Catholic chapel in every town of England, so Catholicism would be on an equal footing with Anglicanism. 5 Louis XIV and the French ministry believed the rebellion was William s product. Tension was made, and Louis XIV began to tell James II to build up his army in case of another rebellion. 6 Miller, James II, The Edict of Fontainebleau ended the Edict of Nantes (1598), which allowed Protestants in France to be tolerated. This may seem like a valid inference, but, in historicity, James II was against Louis XIV s persecution of Protestants and offended by the allegations of acceptance of the harassment of Protestants. 8 Catholics who served in the civil war were permitted amnesty beforehand. 3
5 William of Orange is greeted after invasion In late winter William of Orange wrote a letter pleading James II to reverse Louis XIV s annexation of the principality of Orange. 10 James II tried to persuade Louis XIV because William was a family member, but Louis refused to overturn his annexation. 11 On January 26, 1686, James wrote a letter to William detailing his inability to force Louis XIV to free the principality of Orange. William was angry and scapegoated James II s inability to recover the principality of Orange as a hoax, in which James II was in partnership with Louis XIV to retain the principality. William also looked at events that happened hitherto as proof of a pact between Louis XIV and James II-e.g., a secret meeting in 1685 between English and French diplomats that was aimed to end skirmishes between the English and French in North America, was engendered a conference to rekindle war with his Dutch Republic. Likewise, William also thought Louis XIV s rapid naval rearmament in early 1686 was an indication of a future war. Fearing the survival of the Dutch Republic, William made an alliance with fellow Protestant countries Brandenburg and Sweden to balance power in Europe. Moreover, Germans princes also made an alliance because of the fear of French onslaught. Rightly so, James II felt geopolitics shifted against him; James II felt William and the German princes made the new alliance systems to disturb international relations and endanger the existence of both England and France. 12 In due course, James II felt an obligation to be in closer proximity to Louis XIV. During this time, James II s advisers divulged the need to make relations with Louis XIV strong in case William manifested hostilities that fomented a war, but the advisers also tempered their guidance with caution by not advising to declare an open alliance with France so as to not disconcert William by providing a crescendo event to base ignition of war flames. Louis XIV then spoke of the necessity of an open alliance between England and France because of William s supposed gravitation to war and because of the restructuring of power internationally from the various alliances. Although the alliance was not declared openly, proof of the alliance can be seen when France had a conflict over territory with Spain and when a French fleet clashed with a Dutch fleet in the summer of 1686, in which James told the Spanish to concede the territory and ignored the Dutch imploration for help against Louis. William was flummoxed by these incidents that tacitly proved an alliance between James II and Louis XIV, and he was further riled when a rumor floated out of France revealing a build up of the fleet and formulation of plans for a war on the Dutch by Louis XIV. Louis XVI was seen as an imperious figure who provoked the Dutch War in 1672 to conquer Europe. At the con- 10 The principality of Orange was first occupied in 1680, and was annexed in the summer of William of Orange was James II s son-in-law. 12 The League of Augsburg. 4
6 clusion of the Dutch War in 1678, the Peace of Nimeguen ceded the fortress of Luxemburg and other territories to France. William of Orange believed war needed to be revived against the French because of the unprovoked Dutch War, and because the existence of Protestantism and the Netherlands was in danger if the belligerent Louis XIV was alive. 13 William felt a preemptive attack by the Netherlands would be ideal because Louis XIV would be caught off guard, but the Dutch Republic was fearful of making a war because the States General alleged William was a warmonger who was trying to surreptitiously end the Dutch Republic by raising a powerful military to impose monarchy and ravage the constitution. In February of 1686 anti-catholic sentiment was produced in sermons because of the disapproval of James II s friendship with France and disregard for the Protestant Dutch Republic. The anti-catholic sermons led to James II appointing Anglican bishops who were not as outspoken as the previous dissidents. That same month Catholic devotional works were seized by Anglicans, and ordered to be returned by James II. James II s command was thought to be ineffectual, and the devotional works were not returned. In March, James used his suspending powers to end criminal charges against Quakers. In May, Burnet made a deluge of pamphlets deprecating James II s dispensing power that led to James II prosecuting him, but Burnet sought refuge under the aegis of the Dutch Republic. The Dutch Republic was vehemently against this unjust suit that was made as a corollary of a despotic king, and so they repudiated James II s demand of immediate return of Burnet. The Dutch Republic was further incensed when an exile from England, who was a citizen of the Dutch Republic, was kidnapped by English military officers in the Netherlands; the Dutch Republic s army officers rejoindered by deporting the English army officers. Both of the preceding incidents enflamed relations between England and the Dutch Republic, and led to an escalation of animosity. In May, James II nominated a Catholic to be the head of the British regiment that was to be stationed near the Dutch Republic, but William of Orange refused to honor James II s nominee because of fear of an Anglo-French attack. From this incident James II believed in Louis XIV s assertion that William funded Monmouth s rebellion and had designs to topple him. On June 16, 1686 members of Parliament retaliated against James II s practice of dispensing the Test Act and appointing Catholics in municipal offices by prosecuting Sir Edward Hales for being an office holding Catholic in the legal case Godden v. Hales. 14 The judges who handled the case ruled the king had the legal right to use the powers of dispensation and suspension in regard to law and legislation, but only in the cases which law fell under the guise of things made by man, not God. 15 Essentially, the case allowed James II to have more power by reducing the Parliament s role in legislation. 16 The case was very important because it empowered James II to believe God gave him the right to administer law on earth, and if someone was violating God s designs by disagreeing with him, then he asserted they were upsetting God s designs and should be expatriated. After Godden v. Hales, James II inundated the military and government offices with a slew of Catholics. The populace was outraged and felt law was compromised by an arbitrary king who was trying to set ablaze the stitches that were so terribly difficult to sow the Anglican Church and England together. On July 8 th, James II made an ecclesiastical commission that executed the king s executive powers in churches and other institutions because of his failure to dismiss a rector in May whose sermons were incendiary vis-à-vis Catholicism. 17 Following this event, James II criticized Anglicanism and the Anglican Church s persecution of Catholics and dissenters for the first time. In August of 1686, James II allowed Dissenters to worship freely with fairly good success. 18 In November, James prorogued Parliament and allowed over seventy Catholics to become commissioned in the military. On August 6, William of Orange received the Remonstrance to the King of England from his Privy Council, which stated war should be made on the Dutch as soon as possible and James II had the right to alter the succession to the crown in England by excluding William from inheriting it. James II claimed the document was a canard, but William of Orange believed in the authenticity of the document, especially when James II secured a large loan of 400,000 sterling to build up his armada. 19 More rumors were then made about James II and Louis XIV planning to destroy the Dutch Republic so as to bring them to submission and impose Catholicism on them. William, as well as the States General 13 The Peace of Nimeguen is also known as the Treaty of Nijeman. 14 Godden v. Hales established the dispensing power legal because it was used since the earliest of the Tudors. The judges also ruled the laws of the kingdom were the king s and he was the sole arbiter and creator of law. 15 A law made by man (mala prohibita) was a law that was enacted through Parliament, like the Test Act. On the other hand, a law by God (mala in se) could never be tampered with-viz., divine right. 16 Stuart E. Prall, The Bloodless Revolution: England 1688 (Madison: The University of Wisconsin Press, 1985), The establishment of the ecclesiastical commission allowed for propaganda made in Churches and Universities against Catholicism be ceased. 18 Pockets of resistance to toleration of Dissenters existed until the first few months Miller, James II,
7 feared for their subsistence, and so when William proposed the idea of expanding the fleet in the fall of 1686, the States General actively complied; it was a important event because William s previous attempts to expand the fleet and military were rendered fruitless because the States General felt William would accumulate power, annul the constitution, and make a powerful monarchy. Summarily, the States General sacrificed their power because of trepidation over alleged English and French war itineraries. In October of 1686, James II appointed Catholics to Cambridge in very high positions, and exempted Catholics from taking oaths and attending prayers in universities. Also in October, James II dismissed Parliament because the men in the House of Commons were not conforming to his plans. To prevent it from happening in the future, James II went on the offensive in December by dismissing Clarendon from his position of lord lieutenant in the House of Commons, and Rochester, a politician who coordinated activates of the Parliament and court to the hindrance of James II s machinations. In December, James II continued his attack by questioning members of the House of Commons about their attitude toward disestablishing the Test Act and penal laws; if they disagreed to end the two statutes, James dismissed them. James II felt he had the right to expunge the two decrees without Parliament, but he felt active obedience by the Parliament to his program was essential to preventing a rebellion. In February of 1687, James dismissed two judges who were against his dispensing power, and then four more judges in April in the same manner, endeavoring to make a court of judges who would make the dispensing power legal. Also in April, James bribed members of Parliament to mitigate the Test Act and penal laws, and continued his inquisition into the political leanings of the members of Parliament. James II also elongated his power by writing a charter that enabled him to appoint and dismiss town councilors. Furthermore, he forced corporations to comply with toleration, and if they rebelled, he revoked their charter. James II also imposed censorship upon the press by not permitting anti-catholic polemics to be printed. Feeling powerless and deducing the futility of his power over Parliament, James II used his suspending power on April 4, 1687, to eliminate the Test Act and penal laws with the Declaration of Indulgence. The Declaration of Indulgence ended all Anglican oaths and rites administered in municipal offices so as to allow Catholics and Dissenters in office without compromising their religion. The rescinding of the Test Act and the penal laws made a constitutional crisis in which law was subject to the caprices of the king; a struggle for sovereignty was made in which the previous laws passed before James II s accession to solidify the nation were melted by the aura from James II s crown. The Declaration of Indulgence was seen as a declaration of war on the Anglican Church because the Test Act was seen as a weir to protect Anglicanism from being destroyed. The Anglican laity requited to the Declaration of Indulgence in repugnance by not honoring it and by producing more anti-catholic sermons. James II commanded the clergy to make an address to him to thank him for the Declaration of Indulgence, but an address was made that simply thanked him for things other than allowing toleration, to the dismay of James II. Various Catholic groups made pamphlets that defended the Declaration of Indulgence and religious toleration, but to no avail. On April 5 th, the president of Magdalen College in Oxford died and James II commissioned a Catholic in place of him, but the fellows of the college declared their own president on April 15 th because the king s candidate was enunciated ineligible. James II demanded the reinstatement of his candidate, but the fellows did not conform; James replied with inflammatory invective that reduced their power to nil. James II seized the fellowships of the fractious, committing a legal problem because the title of fellowship was property. The confiscation of private property, doubled with the appointment of a Catholic president in Magdalen College, made the populace very irritated. Withal, when the heavily Catholic constituted Parliament met following the appointment of a Catholic to the position of president of Magdalen College, Anglicans believed the rumors about James II s conspiracy to enjoin obligatory conversion to Catholicism. Fearing imminent upheaval, James II spoke to William in confidential conversations about his opinion on the circumvention of the Test Act and penal laws because James II knew William s advisers in the States General and followers in England wanted to incite a holy war against him. To James II s consternation, William replied to James II s inquiry by stating persecution was wrong, but a necessary safeguard to protect Anglicanism. 6
8 During the last few months of 1687 William was alerted by James II s Catholic and absolutist policies because his claim to the throne could be imperiled by a revolt. When rumors came from England about James II s attempts to change the succession to disable William s claim to come to fruition, William was enraged and loathed James II. William s abhorrence of James II climaxed in October, when James II s wife was announced pregnant. He was further alarmed on January 17 th, 1688, when James II demanded the English troops under Dutch control in the Netherlands tangent to France be returned to England. William felt it was a step to make war, and so he did not allow the regiments to return to England. From this point on, William openly criticized James II s actions and proclaimed James II a tyrannical papist. Surprisingly, James II continued to try to get support from William by sending letters pleading him to support the repeal of the Test Act and penal laws, but William did not comply. In an act of desperation, James II went to his Protestant daughter Mary, and tried to convince her to convert to Catholicism to get a notable person to support him because he felt a revolt was coming. As the year progressed, William became more defiant and spat more incendiary invective at James. James threatened to make war on William, and William also claimed he would make war too. Also in January, A Letter by Mign Heer Fagel to Mr. James Stewart was written, in which the author says William wants to rescind the penal laws, but not the Test Acts. The letter was an attempt to make support for William in England. In February, a Catholic chapel was in the process of being constructed in London, but the lord mayor commanded the decommission of the chapel, making James II intervene and mitigate the lord mayor s decision. The first two Sundays mass was held, protests materialized; James II was forced to commission the army to break the dispute, and henceforth James II used the army to protect all Catholic masses that were held in public places. Following the fiasco in February, William of Orange and Mary Stuart circulated a letter that avowed toleration of non-anglicans, and the perpetuation of the Test Act to rally support for William s intervention in England. 20 James II then felt a civil war could be started by William s supporters in England, and so he decided to call upon Parliament again; he asked all members of Parliament if they would repeal the Test Act and penal laws, but many refused to answer him. The ones who refused to answer the questions and who did not fall in line with James II s politics were dismissed. By the early months of 1688, Parliament was composed of Dissenters and Baptists who did not want to advance Catholicism. James II proposed ending the Test Act to Parliament, but they refused. It was followed by preacher and citizen alike in England and the Netherlands encouraging William to have greater powers in the Dutch Republic to end the Anglo-French power vacuum. As a result, the States General allowed William to expand the army and fleet, as well fortify the frontiers. In April, James II balanced power with the Dutch by making twenty ships and fortifying Chatham and Portsmouth. On April 27 th, James reissued the Declaration of Indulgence, but with a new preamble and postscript that stated he wanted to call a Parliament to make religious toleration. Then at the outset of May, Louis made a public offer to James of sixteen vessels; the public offer added tension to international relations and made William fear for his life. After the public offer of ships, William s mind was set upon invading England. William again appealed to the States General to make a military build up, and so the States General allowed William to Coronation of William of Orange expand the army further. William then made an alliance with various German princes to deter an attack by Louis. William also feared for the preservation of Protestantism, and so he wrote a letter to high-ranking Anglicans in England, claiming he would save England from Catholicism if he were invited. On May 4 th, James II decreed the Order in Council, which forced the Declaration of Indulgence to be read by Anglican clergy in their parishes. The clergy repudiated James II s command, and seven bishops from St. Asaph made a petition on May 17 th, stating the Declaration of Indulgence and 20 James II counterbalanced William and Mary s letter by issuing pamphlets that extolled religious toleration and the annulment of the Test Act. 7