Religious Intolerance In The 17th Century

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Throughout the course of the 17th century major changes were occurring in England. A change in the throne and a clash with the king was causing discontent among the people. This conflict was largely over the issue of religion and the lack of tolerance that the king had for those who believed differently than he did. Religious intolerance in England and other European countries led to the colonization of the New World for various reasons. In breaking free of the persecution, finding a home in America, and establishing their own colonies, the colonists shaped the modern American religious ideology.
Religious intolerance was a widespread problem in 17th century Europe. It was specifically an issue in England. During this time, religion played
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The Church of England had formed in an attempt to improve upon the way of life offered by the Catholic Church. In reality it was no better and “By law everybody was supposed to belong to the Church of England” (Lambert 1). When Charles I took the throne, everything became increasingly worse. Not only were people facing persecution from their peers in matters of religion, but the government was also oppressing these people. A specific example of this were the English Civil Wars. This series of battles “began originally as a dispute over financial matters between the King of England (Charles I) and Parliament, but the underlying issue of this time, concerned the religion of the nation” (Richards 1). The issues over religion led to a split in government creating two groups: the Royalists (those who supported the king and his Anglican ways) and the Roundheads (those who did not). Within the rebellious roundheads, various religious groups surfaced. One of these was the Quakers. Their beliefs raised concern and threatened the King’s Anglican ways. The Quakers were persecuted tremendously. They were tortured and killed, which

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