what are the character traits of James I that would lead to problems as king of england
- a firm belief in divine right
4 failed to understand prejudices of his new subjects
why would james’ firm belief in divine right lead to problems as king of england
It was a belief that James would tactlessly lecture parliament on. (elizabeth firmly believed in it too but seldom stated it explicitly)
why would James’ overconfidence lead to problems as king of england
James claimed himself as “an experienced king needing no lessons in kingship”.
he had ruled scotland successfully for over 25 years and believed he would do the same in england.
he failed to understand the totally different conditions he would face
why would James’ extravagance lead to problems as kind of england
he famously believed england to be the land of “milk and honey”.
he never appreciated the need to curb his expenditure and remained insolvent until his death. he once stated “my heart is greater than my rent”
why would james’ failure to understand the prejudice of his new subjects lead to problems as king of england?
james failed to appreciate the ingrained fear his new subjects had for the catholics and spanish. this would arise anger in parliament and lead to many clashes
why would james’ bisexuality lead to problems as king of england
throughout his reign he was dominated by worthless “favourites” who would squander his money and often influence his policies
such favourites were hated by parliament eg duke of buckingham
james once stated “christ had his john and i have my george”
what character traits did james I posses that would greatly aid him in governing england and reduce conflict to a minimum?
2 peace loving
why would James being conciliatory aid him in governing england?
ultimately, james was willing to back down to parliament’s wishes and was careful not to push his prerogatives too far. he ultimately respected the privileges of his new parliament and was able to back down and find a middle way.
why would James being peace loving aid him in governing england?
james wished to be the “arbiter of europe” and end the war with spain - a realistic policy which would result in increased prosperity for a war torn nation that desperately needed peace
why would James being tolerant aid him in governing england?
james had no wish to persecute his loyal roman catholic subjects and was also prepared to listen to the demands of the puritans. he wanted the church of england to be a broad based institution acceptable to the majority of his subjects.
summary / conclusion of james I’s character
while facets of james’ character would cause problems and provoke opposition from his new subjects, his willingness to compromise, tolerance and peace loving nature would ensure that serious conflict was kept to a minimum and his reign was one of relative peace and calm. his success can be easily judged by the disasters that would quickly befall his son.
what problems did James I inherit from Elizabeth
1 an aggressive parliament, led by able men used to getting their own way in elizabeth’s declining years
2 a debt of £400,000 and an archaic financial system in need of reform
3 war with spain that had been waging since 1588
4 two religious minorities that did not conform to the C of E
5 courtiers who experiences rewards after the frugality of Elizabeth
what were the sources of crown revenue in the reign of James I
non parliamentary taxation
what was ordinary revenue and give examples
ordinary revenue was the income that the monarch received each year and came from a number of difference sources
crown lands = inefficiently run and on fixed leases (out of date)
customs revenue/ tonnage + poundage (taxes on imports and exports) = by 1621, customs revenue brought in nearly 3x as much revenue as crown lands but money fluctuated according to the volume of trade
feudal dues = ward ship: the system whereby an estate was managed after the death of its owner until the heir came of age. purveyance: the right of the court to buy provisions at fixed prices which were well below market rates
monopolies = royal grants for the sole right to manufacture, distribute or sell a particular product fines…imposed in the law courts
what was extraordinary revenue and give examples
extraordinary revenue was parliament controlled taxation
parliament tax, based on land = but people lied about how much land they owed to James would never get 100% of the money he was actually owed
in war or other serious events, james could request extra money from parliament (eg in times of war). this took the form of subsidies (the parliamentary grant) which were assessed on land rather than income
give examples of non parliamentary taxation
ship money = a tax levied in “times of danger” for the upkeep isnt of the navy, but the king always declared danger even if there was no danger. but he was only allowed to declare it once a year.
sale or capital assets = jewels, titles, offices
borrowing = elizabeth became increasingly dependent on the london money market
what were crown lands
leased out for rent, but often on long leases and did not keep up with inflation. income had also declined because of sales of land by elizabeth
what was wardship
the king’s right to act as a guardian of the children or tenants who died before the child was old enough the inherit.
what was purveyance
the king’s right to buy food and supplies for court at reduced prices
A-LEVEL questions on james I and finance
- how far were james I’s financial problems of his own making
2 james I extravagance was the main reason he was unable to solve his financial problems. how far do you agree
3 assess the reasons why financial issues caused conflict between james I and his parliaments
4 to what extent was james I’s extravagance the most important cause of his financial problems
5 james I was to blame for the financial disputes during his reign. how far do you agree.
why did James I live and die insolvent as king of england
- the legacy of elizabeth
2 james’ failure to curb his expenditure
3 mitigating circumstances
4 the falling value of subsidies and parliament’s reluctance to grant them
4 the corruption and incompetence of his 4 lord treasurers
who were james’ 4 lord treasurers?
1604-1608 lord dorset
1608-1612 robert cecil, earl of salisbury
1612-1618 thomas howard earl of suffolk
1618-1624 lionel car field earl of middlesex
only one of these men made a concerted effort to reduce james’ expenditure and for this lionel was impeached by parliament and sent to the tower of london
evidence of the impact elizabeth’s legacy had on James I and finance
- james inherited a debt of £100,000 and an antiquated financial system badly in need of reform
- elizabeth had sold nearly half the crown lands to finance the war with spain. those that she retained were mainly on fixed leases that had not kept up with inflation
- parliamentary subsidies had dramatically fallen in value. in 1558 elizabeth had received about £137,000 and this had fallen to £72,000 by 1621
evidence of the impact james’ extravagance had on James I and finance
- james was expected to be and indeed was generous. “my heart is greater than my rent”. james hay commented “spend and god will send”
- by 1610 james was giving away £80,000 to friends and courtiers, whereas elizabeth had given on average £30,000
- james hay received gifts totalling £400,000 (a years royal revenue)
- the cost of the royal wardrobe quadrupled
- ante supper was invented by james hay
- lavish entertainments were put on eg tournaments and masques
- elizabeth had spent less than £300,000 in peacetime whereas james’ expenditure reached a peak of £522,000 in 1614
evidence of the impact mitigating circumstances has on James I and finances
- james did have one justification for spending more money unlike elizabeth eg he had a wife and family to support
- his wife and sons both had their own households
- the funeral of henry in 1612 and marriage of elizabeth in 1613 cost £116,000
what did the first lord treasurer Lord Dorset (1604-1608) do in an attempt to achieve solvency for James
1604 = the “great farms” of the customs leased out for a period of 7 years which made it difficult for crown to benefit from any increase in trade
1606 = John Bates case: king won the right to adjust the customs duties but this angered merchants in parliament
what did the second lord treasurer Earl of Salisbury (1608-1612) robert cecil do in an attempt to achieve solvency for James
1610 = the Great Contract proposals were rejected. the only real attempt to solve the crown’s financial problems but it failed due to mistrust and suspicion on both sides.
1611 = the selling of titles began. a new title invented: the baronet and this simply devalued titles in general
what did the third lord treasurer earl of suffolk (1614-1618) thomas howard do in an attempt to achieve solvency for James
- crown debt actually almost doubled in this period from £500,000 to £900,000
- 1618: thomas howard and robert cecil built hatfield house and audley end which was “too good for a king, but good enough for a lord treasurer”. but suffolk dismissed and convicted of embezzlement.
what did the last lord treasurer earl of middlesex (1621-1624) lionel cranfield do in an attempt to achieve solvency for james
- followed a two proned attack of increasing crown revenue but also decreasing crown expenditure
- obtained from james a promise that no more grants would be made without approval from the treasury
- cranfield opposed war with spain and turned duke of buckingham into an implacable enemy
- 1624 was impeached and imprisoned in the tower of london
FOREIGN POLICY 1603-1624: why did James I want to end the war with spain
james prided himself on his diplomacy and hoped to form an alliance with spain, to mediate between protestant and catholics and ensure peace. this, combined with his lack of money, prompted james to put an immediate end to the war with spain.
what did the 1604 treaty of london allow for england
it allowed england to trade with Spain’s European territories, but not with the New world. overall it was generally accepted but a small minority of privateers resented being unable to attack Spain and the Indies.
trade quickly expanded and many merchants made their fortune
but henceforth James pinned his hopes on an entente with spain (understanding) - a policy hated by englishmen and the merchants in parliament
james made an alliance with spain, but what was the other catholic country he formed an alliance with? (despite james following a mildly protestant foreign policy during the early part of his reign)
james remained on fairly good terms with catholic france. years of peace helped develop anglo-french trade and in august 1610 England and France concluded a mutually defensive alliance
give examples of James following a mildly protestant foreign policy (during the early part of his reign)
1608 - england became a member of the German Protestant Union
1612- James made a defensive alliance with the princes of the Protestant Union, thereby appearing to many as the leader of the anti-hasburg powers . due to this, it now became difficult for james to reconcile attempts to mediate between the two opposing sides with his role as leader of one of them
what happened in february 1613 that James hoped would keep the peace
Princess elizabeth (nicknamed winter queen) married Frederick Elector Palatine of the Rhine.
he also hoped to marry Prince Henry to a spanish princess (to relate to both RC and protestant royalty) however prince Henry died in 1613
second period of foreign policy 1612-1618
what was the influence of Gondomar
1613 count gondomar, the new spanish ambassador arrived in England and began to exercise great influence over James. He tried to pull away from the continental protestants
gondomar dangled the alluring bait of marriage between Prince Charles and the spanish infanta, carrying a large dowry
james’s failure to conclude a french marriage and worsening relations with the dutch further strengthened James’ feeling towards Spain
what was raleigh’s expedition to Guiana (south america) and what happened
james, desperate for money, released Raleigh from the tower and sent him to find El Dorado, the mythical golden city
the expedition was greatly hated by the spanish who loathed raleigh.
james promised if raleigh attacked the spanish he would be executed. the expedition failed, the spanish were attacked and raleigh was executed (mainly due to james’ anxiety for securing a spanish marriage) and parliament now became increasingly suspicious of james’ loyalty to protestantism
third period of foreign policy 1618-1623 (palatinate crisis, protestation, spanish marriage)
what was the palatinate crisis
1618 - bohemian princes rebelled against their catholic king. james’ son in law the elector palatine, was offered and accepted the crown by the bohemian princes. the catholic’s joined together to drive him out
october 1620 - battle of white mountain = frederick was routed and driven out of the palatinate and bohemia. there was a grave danger of the rapid extension of roman catholicism in germany