Tudor period

The Tudor period usually refers to the period between 1485 and 1603, specifically in relation to the history of England. This coincides with the rule of the Tudor dynasty in England whose first monarch was Henry VII (1457ndash 1509). The term is often used more broadly to include Elizabeth I's reign (1558ndash 1603), although this is often treated separately as the Elizabethan era.

ocial and economic revolution

Following the Black Death plagues and the agricultural depression of the late 14th century population growth began to increase. The export of woolen products resulted in economic upturn with products exported to mainland Europe. Henry VII negotiated the favourable Intercursus Magnus treaty in 1496. ["United Kingdom."Encyclopædia Britannica from Encyclopædia Britannica 2006 Ultimate Reference Suite DVD . [Accessed May 1, 2008] . ]

The high wages and land plenty seen in the late 14th century and early 15th century were replaced with low wages and land shortage. Various Inflationary pressures, perhaps due to influx of New World gold and rising population, set the stage for social upheaval with the gap between the rich and poor widening. ["United Kingdom."Encyclopædia Britannica from Encyclopædia Britannica 2006 Ultimate Reference Suite DVD . [Accessed May 1, 2008] .] . This was a period of significant change for the majority of the rural population with manorial lords beginning the process of enclosure.Following the Black Death plagues and the agricultural depression of the late 14th century population growth began to increase. The export of woolen products resulted in economic upturn with products exported to mainland Europe. Henry VII negotiated the favourable Intercursus Magnus treaty in 1496. ["United Kingdom."Encyclopædia Britannica from Encyclopædia Britannica 2006 Ultimate Reference Suite DVD . [Accessed May 1, 2008] . ]

The high wages and land plenty seen in the late 14th century and early 15th century were replaced with low wages and land shortage. Various Inflationary pressures, perhaps due to influx of New World gold and rising population, set the stage for social upheaval with the gap between the rich and poor widening. ["United Kingdom."Encyclopædia Britannica from Encyclopædia Britannica 2006 Ultimate Reference Suite DVD . [Accessed May 1, 2008] .] . This was a period of significant change for the majority of the rural population with manorial lords beginning the process of enclosure.

ignificant events of the period

Battle of Stoke (1487)

In 1487 Henry VII's enemies from the House of York had crowned a pretender and landed a small army off the coast of Cumbria with the intention of stealing the crown. Henry VII defeated them at East Stoke.cite web
url=http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/launch_tl_british.shtml
title=BBC Interactive Timeline
accessdate=2008-05-02
publisher=BBC Corp.
pages=
] This was perhaps the last battle in the War of the Roses.

English Reformation

This was perhaps the most significant series of events which took place during the Tudor period. It began as a result of Henry VIII's grievance at Pope Clement VII regarding his refusal to grant a divorce. ["Reformation."Encyclopædia Britannica from Encyclopædia Britannica 2006 Ultimate Reference Suite DVD . [Accessed May 2, 2008] .] It ended with the Church of England breaking away from the Roman Catholic Church and perhaps contributed to the Civil War.Fact|date=May 2008

Norfolk Rebellion (1549)

Beginning in 1549, this was to be the largest popular uprising during the Tudor period. It was at first intended as a demonstration against enclosures of common land. The instigator, Robert Kett, was hanged for treason.cite web
url=http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/launch_tl_british.shtml
title=BBC Interactive Timeline
accessdate=2008-05-02
publisher=BBC Corp.
pages=
] ["Ket, Robert."Encyclopædia Britannica from Encyclopædia Britannica 2006 Ultimate Reference Suite DVD . [Accessed May 2, 2008] .]

Daily Life in the period

Poverty

About a third of the population lived in poverty with the wealthy expected to give alms to assist the impotent poor. Tudor law was harsh on the able bodied poor i.e, those unable to find work. Those who left their parishes in order to locate work were termed vagabonds and could be subjected to punishments including whipping. [ [http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/TUDpoverty.htm Poverty in Tudor Times ] ]

The idea of the workhouse for the able bodied poor was first suggested in 1576. Facts|date=May 2008

Health

:"See also: Health and diet in Elizabethan England"

Average life span was 35. High rates of childhood mortality saw only 33-50% of the population reaching the age of 16.

Although home to only a small part of the population the Tudor municipalities were overcrowded and unhygenic. Most municipalities were unpaved although this differed in larger towns and cities.

There were no sewers or drains and rubbish was simply abandoned in the street. Animals such as rats thrived in these conditions. In larger towns and cities, such as London, common diseases arising from lack of sanitation included smallpox, measles, malaria, typhus, diphtheria, Scarlet fever, and chickenpox. [ [http://www.localhistories.org/tudor.html Life In Tudor Times ] ]

Outbreaks of the Black Death pandemic occurred in 1498, 1535, 1543, 1563, 1589 and 1603. [ [http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/history/voices/voices_salisbury.shtml Spread of the Plague] ]

Food and diet

The food consumed by the very rich in this period consisted largely of venison, and often of blackbirds and larks. However, potatoes had not reached the table to any great extent, because farmers had only just begun growing them, although explorers such as Sir Walter Raleigh had brought them to Britain. Honey was normally used to sweeten food; sugar was only rarely available, but when they did have it, they put it on all their food, including meat. The poor never had sugar or potatoes and seldom ate meat. They would occasionally catch rabbits and fish but most of the time they ate bread and vegetables such as cabbage and turnips.Facts|date=May 2008

Homes and dwellings

The majority of the population lived in small villages. Their homes comprised, as in earlier centuries, of thatched huts with one or two rooms. Furniture was basic with stools being commonplace rather than chairs . [ [http://www.localhistories.org/tudor.html Life In Tudor Times ] ]

The very rich usually lived in large mansions in the countryside, with up to 150 servants. The mansions had many chimneys for the many fireplaces required to keep the vast rooms warm. These fires were also the only way of cooking food.

Education

Poorer children never went to school. Children from better-off families had tutors to teach them reading and French. However, boys were often sent to schools which belonged to the monasteries and there they would learn mainly Latin in classes of up to 60 boys.Facts|date=May 2008

Pastimes

The rich used to go hunting to kill deer and wild boar for their feasts. They also enjoyed fencing and jousting contests. Most rich people watched bear fighting and the poor played a kind of football where the posts were about a mile apart, they jumped on each other, often breaking their necks and backs. There were some theatres and people enjoyed watching plays, particularly those of the young playwright William Shakespeare.Facts|date=May 2008

Monarchs

The House of Tudor produced five English monarchs who ruled during this period.

*Henry VII (1485 to 1509)
*Henry VIII (1509 to 1547)
*Edward VI (1547 to 1553)
*Mary I (1553 to 1558)
*Elizabeth I (1558 to 1603)

References

Harrington, Peter. The Castles of Henry VIII. Oxford, Osprey, 2007.

ee also

*Tudor style
*Tudor rose
*Tudorbethan architecture
*
*Early Modern Britain
*English Reformation

External links

* [http://www.bl.uk/learning/langlit/booksforcooks/1500s/1500sfood.html Tudor food] - learning resources from the British Library
* [http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/tudors/| BBC History - Tudor Period]

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