The Glorious Revolution took place in 1688 and is sometimes referred to as the 1688 Revolution. The revolt ended the rule of James II, ushering in the sovereignty of William III and Mary II. It occurred after James II declared his intentions to reinstall Roman Catholicism as the national religion. Many people remember the constant dislocation of the English Civil War owing to the stability of Charles II at the time. During this time, most people were not willing to see the country in unstable state of turmoil and endless military conflict.
Because of James II policies and leadership style, there was enough discontent in the Tory and Whig parties. This displeasure forced main politicians to invite William of Orange, a Protestant to come and take the leadership of the country by dethroning James II. Important to note, William’s wife, Mary was the daughter of James II and granddaughter of Charles I. Following the invitation by leading politicians, William arrived in Devon in November of 1688, forcing James to fly to France on December 23, 1688. James’ departure left a leadership vacuum and in January 1689, William convened parliament, which passed necessary laws to recognize the success of the revolution. Most politicians who were against the leadership of James II saw him as a source of instability for the country. They believed that by ousting James II, they would take back the society where it belonged in the days of status quo and when Protestant faith was guaranteed without political interference.
In a bid to acknowledge his rule, parliament passed the December 1688 Bill of Rights, which decaled that James had resigned and the crown passed to William and his heirs. However, this unity to overthrow James and install William and Mary was not to last forever. There was disagreement on the procedure to run the monarch, leading to the splitting of politicians who were previously united under James II. One faction of the divide recognized Mary as the only legal heir to the throne since she was of the same lineage. Even though many years had elapsed after the rule of Charles I, there are people who held him with high regard as the monarch even though this was not as an individual. On the other hand, strict legitimists opined that William was the only recognized family member as he was ruling in the absence of the monarch.
William from Holland was a staunch and respected Protestant leader. He was also unhappy with the discontent and threatened to go back to Holland if he was denied full royal powers. Because of the turmoil and the fear of experiencing military rule in England, no one welcome the idea as it would have created a political vacuum, which no one supported. However, a few leaders from the Whig party argued that it was necessary to give the people a chance to choose who to become the monarch, without dividing the nation along political ideologies and leadership inclination. However, the Bill of Right, which empowered William in December 1688, forbade the monarch from being a Catholic and from marrying a Catholic too. The legislation further handed excess power to power, a turning point that historians view as the origin of constitutional monarchy. For instance, prerogative courts like the Ecclesiastical Commission were abolished. The law further recognized parliament as the only authority allowed to raise taxes.
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