Constitutional Royalism and the Search for Settlement, C.1640-1649

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Cambridge University Press, May 2, 2002 - History - 392 pages
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'Constitutional royalism' is one of the most familiar yet least often examined of all the political labels found in the historiography of the English Revolution. This book fills a gap by investigating the leading Constitutional royalists who rallied to King Charles I in 1642 while consistently urging him to reach an 'accommodation'ith Parliament. These royalists' early careers reveal that a commitment to the rule of law and a relative lack of 'godly' zeal were the characteristic predictors of Constitutional royalism in the Civil War. Such attitudes explain why many of them criticised the policies of the King's personal rule, but also why they joined the King in 1642 and tried to achieve a negotiated settlement thereafter. The central chapters examine their role in the peace talks of the 1640s and assess why those talks broke down. The final part of the book traces the Constitutional royalists through the Interregnum--during which they consciously withdrew from public life--to the Restoration, when many of them returned to prominence and saw their ideas vindicated. A concluding chapter reviews the long-term legacy of Constitutional royalism and its specific contribution to the politics of the English Revolution. Throughout, the story of the Constitutional royalists is set within the wider context of seventeenth-century English political history and thought.

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themes debates sources
the early Stuarts and the early Stuart constitution
Early careers of the main exponents
Formation and convergence 16401642
negotiations formal and informal
Issues and stickingpoints
The theory of Constitutional Royalism
Constitutional Royalism from Regicide
an ideology vindicated?
assessment and evaluation

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