“Assess the Significance of the Role of Parliament in the Causes of the English Civil War.”

“Assess the significance of the role of Parliament in the causes of the English Civil War.”
The causes of the English Civil war, which lasted nine years from 1642 to 1651, has been attributed to a variety of complex causes. The war was fought between the royalists, who supported Charles as a monarch, and the parliamentarians who supported a republic state, without a monarch. The overall outcome of the war was parliamentarian victory and the execution of Charles I. Factors which contributed towards the outbreak of the civil war included Charles’ attitude towards parliament. Indeed, he was largely against parliamentary intervention due to his belief in the Divine right of kingship, so dissolved it several times during his reign, once even leading to an eleven year period of personal rule. Religion also took a role in adding to the strain between parliament, and the monarch and his supporters. During this time Christianity was becoming splintered with no clear direction, so factions started to emerge, ultimately leading to conflict. Furthermore, economic issues were also emerging – without parliament Charles could not gather taxation, so had to resort to more traditional, often medieval methods, leading to widespread discontent. A large amount of foreign policy including warfare meant that taxation was soon becoming an issue.
There is extensive evidence to point towards parliamentary blame in the causes of the civil war. Firstly, Charles’ dissolution of parliament meant that many views aside his own became alienated, and people could not put forward their opinions against the king. Parliament was initially dissolved parliament in 1625, and by 1625, it had been dissolved twice more. Charles’ eleven year period of personal rule led to extensive political rifts between parliament and the monarch. There has been debate as to Charles’ intentions during this period, if he sought to create an absolutist state, or if he simply found parliament to be a hindrance. During...