Conflict in Seventeenth Century Britain - HI613

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Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2020 to 2021
Autumn 5 30 (15) PROF K Fincham checkmark-circle


Seventeenth-century Britain experienced considerable division and tension, most obviously in the Civil Wars in mid-century between the countries which comprised the multiple kingdom of Britain. The aim is to examine the reasons for, and the attempted resolution of, major political and religious problems, with a clear sense of the European context in which these events were played out. Topics to be studied will include the ideological clashes between crown and parliament in England; the political and cultural divisions of `court' and `country'; religious disunity across the three kingdoms; the expansion of a `public sphere' of politics and religion; the failure of republican government in the 1650s; the instability of Restoration politics and the coming of the Glorious Revolution; and Britain's changing role in Europe across the century.


This module appears in the following module collections.

Contact hours

Total contact hours: 30
Private study hours: 270
Total study hours: 300

Method of assessment

Essay 1 (3,000-words) - 16%
Essay 2 (3,000 words) - 16%
Oral Contribution - 8%
Exam (2 hours) - 60%

Indicative reading

B Bradshaw & J Morrill (eds.) The British Problem, c.1534-1707: State Formation in the Atlantic Archipelago, 1996
R Cust & A Hughes Conflict in Early Stuart England, 1996
D Hirst Authority and Conflict: England, 1603-58, 1986
G Holmes The Making of a Great Power: Late Stuart and Early Georgian Britain, 1660-1722, 1993
C Russell The Causes of the English Civil War, 1990
J Scott Algernon Sidney and the Restoration Crisis, 1991
W Speck Reluctant Revolutionaries: Englishmen and the Revolution of 1688, 1988
D Underdown Revel, Riot and Rebellion: Popular Politics and Government in England, 1603-1660, 1987

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)


  1. Credit level 5. Intermediate level module usually taken in Stage 2 of an undergraduate degree.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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