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Charles I and the Aristocracy, 1625–1642

£65.00

  • Date Published: June 2013
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781107009905

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  • This is a major study of Charles I's relationship with the English aristocracy. Rejecting the traditional emphasis on the 'Crisis of the Aristocracy', Professor Richard Cust highlights instead the effectiveness of the King and the Earl of Arundel's policies to promote and strengthen the nobility. He reveals how the peers reasserted themselves as the natural leaders of the political nation during the Great Council of Peers in 1640 and the Long Parliament. He also demonstrates how Charles deliberately set out to cultivate his aristocracy as the main bulwark of royal authority, enabling him to go to war against the Scots in 1639 and then build the royalist party which provided the means to fight parliament in 1642. The analysis is framed throughout within a broader study of aristocratic honour and the efforts of the heralds to stabilise the social order.

    • Reveals how and why most peers supported the King at the outbreak of civil war, moving away from a traditional focus on the dissident element amongst the aristocracy
    • Demonstrates how after years of decline the aristocracy reasserted itself as the natural leader of the political nation
    • Shows how the activities of heralds and antiquarians played a central role in the Crown's efforts to stabilise the social order
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'A work of superb archival research - painstaking and original.' Literary Review

    'This powerful new book is a landmark in the historiography of the English Civil War … Cust's brilliant analysis turns [Laurence] Stone's work on its head. The book is the most formidable contribution to the debate on the origins of the Civil War in years.' Anthony Fletcher, History Today

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    Product details

    • Date Published: June 2013
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781107009905
    • length: 368 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 24 mm
    • weight: 0.71kg
    • contains: 6 b/w illus. 2 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction
    1. The honours system in late Tudor and early Stuart England
    2. Charles I and the defence of aristocracy, 1625–39
    3. The Court of Chivalry and the defence of honour
    4. The aristocracy and the Bishops' Wars, 1639–40
    5. The aristocracy and the outbreak of civil war, 1640–2
    Bibliography
    Appendices.

  • Author

    Richard Cust, University of Birmingham
    Richard Cust is Professor of Early Modern History at the University of Birmingham. He is the author of Charles I: A Political Life (2005), and he is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society.

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