The Elizabethan exclusion crisis and the Elizabethan polity

Patrick Collinson

in This England

Published by Manchester University Press

Published in print September 2011 | ISBN: 9780719084423
Published online July 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781781702031 | DOI:
The Elizabethan exclusion crisis and the Elizabethan polity

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  • Early Modern History (1500 to 1700)


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‘The Elizabethan exclusion crisis’ refers to the sustained concern of much of the ‘political nation’ in the reign of Elizabeth I to forestall the accession to the English crown of Mary Queen of Scots; and, indeed, to prevent any other remedy for the dangerous vacuum of an uncertain succession which would threaten the Protestant religious and political settlement and all that it stood for. It is a question of whether a crisis could endure for as many as twenty-seven years, which was the time it took finally to put paid to Mary Stuart's claim at Fotheringhay. As with the Cold War, the fact that the exclusion crisis ended with less of a bang than a whimper has discouraged the legitimate exercise of counterfactual history.

Keywords: Mary Stuart; Elizabethan exclusion crisis; political nation; accession; succession problem; Cold War

Chapter.  18947 words. 

Subjects: Early Modern History (1500 to 1700)

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