Tudors: Chapter 1- Political and social role of the church


A-Level History (Tudors ) Mind Map on Tudors: Chapter 1- Political and social role of the church, created by Amy Le Grys on 29/12/2015.
Amy Le Grys
Mind Map by Amy Le Grys, updated more than 1 year ago
Amy Le Grys
Created by Amy Le Grys over 8 years ago

Resource summary

Tudors: Chapter 1- Political and social role of the church
  1. Royal Advisors
    1. Henry VII looked to the pope to secure his authority in England. English kings were keen to show their loyalty to the pope and the Catholic Church, Henry VII built the Lady Chapel at Westminster to secure the Tudor dynasty in the eyes of the Church and the people.
      1. Abbots and bishops sat in the house of lords alongside the nobility. They were instrumental in deciding new legislation and advising the king.
        1. Cardinal Wolsey: PRINCIPLE ADVISER to the king, As CHANCELLOR he had complete control over the legal system, ARCHBISHOP OF YORK, As LEGATUS A LATERE he could act on behalf of the pope.
    2. Church's teachings on monarchical authority
      1. Church law was known as cannon law and it covered the beliefs and practices of the church. The church also taught obedience to the monarch but the pope could excommunicate the king if he was a heretic or tyrant. The cannon law was based on the interpretation of the Archbishops of Canterbury and York.
        1. The church had control over the whole population as everyone went to Church. Henry was dependent on the church to hold social control over the population. The king was personally unknown outside a small circle of the nobility. However the church was the center of the community in many towns and villages and everyone would know the priest.
          1. Many parishioners could not read or write but to enforce the law the Church used wall paintings called Doom Paintings which showed what would happen if you defied the 10 Commandments. Social tensions too were eased by the giving of alms and the importance of giving to the poor was stressed. The poor were often supported during the times of hardship by gifts from the rich.
      2. Wealth of the church
        1. The church in England was responsible for collecting church taxes. Priests gained an income from their parish and some owned more than one while some of the money went to Rome and the king. Rome recived about £4500 per year and Henry VIII got £12,500.
          1. Every household paid a penny to Rome each year called peters pence. Another tax was the tithe, where everyone gave 10% of what they made that year to the church. This included crops, wool and eggs.The tithe was stored in a barn and was supposed to be used for the good of the community but was often sold.
            1. Most parishes were only 4 miles away from a monastery or priory. They had great economic as well as political power. The nobility would give monasteries gifts of gold or silver making them rich institutions. The poor might become lay brothers and work at the monasteries.
        2. Church courts
          1. They could fine someone for not attending church and breaking the 10 commandments. Cases of slander and adultery were also brought before a church court. Church courts could only execute you if you were found guilty of heresy. The Church could also excommunicate you if you were a heretic, this meant that you could not attend services and you wouldn't be forgiven for your sins.
            1. The church was also responsible for reading out wills. It was common for people to leave gifts to the church as well as unpaid tithes or taxes. People also paid for the priest to pray for their soul so that they would spend less time in purgatory.
          2. Parish Churches
            1. Would have been the most magnificent building most people would have entered. This was were masses were held. The high alter was used for masses on Sunday and where the sacrament was held. During the week side alters would be used in chantry chapels, sometimes chantry chapels were of the sole benefit for a person or family. Masses were said for the dead as well with some people joining guilds so that prayers would be said for them at key times.
              1. The church was the physical center of the parish. There were no pews so if you were old or unwell then you would go to the wall.The open space mean that it could be used for other things than just services. It would hold people and animals during bad weather and hold markets as well as social activities.
                1. The rich used the church as a way of showing off their wealth, Churches always excepted gifts of gold and silver, vestments, alter cloths, service books and processional banners. All would be given in the name of the donor and recorded as indication of their generosity. Large gifts meant that the donor had their name recorded in stone.
            2. Monasteries
              1. When Henry became king there were over 850 monasteries in England. Large rural houses were known as Abbeys. Settlements in towns were priories. The function of the institution was largely due to its location. Abbeys werr places of praying and learning with large land holdings while priories worked within the community, helping the poor and sick.Monks were also used to leach the sons of the gentry.
                1. The land that the church had was incredibly important to the local communities. Monasteries gained land when sons of the gentry joined their order or as a form of payment for prayers for the dead. Farms on this land produced food not just for the monastery but for market too and it provided employment.
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