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Church History II - Lesson 8

The English Reformation

The English reformation will be studied in terms of its background, structure and the beginning of the expansion of the kingdom by Henry VII.

Gerald Bray
Church History II
Lesson 8
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The English Reformation

The English Reformation

• Social Backgrounds

o England: The most conservative / national unity

o Wales: No national unity

o Scotland: Subdivided by ethnicity

o Ireland: Disorganized tribal society

• Pope’s request to conquer Ireland

• English family divided

• History of the English family

• The Reformation: facilitated by the conquest of Ireland

• Henry VII

o Plan to expand the kingdom


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The life and thought of the Christian church from the Reformation to modern times. Designed as an orientation to the shape of the whole tradition with special focus on the history of Christian doctrine and spirituality.

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Thank you for your papers. That made interesting reading. Actually, they were on the whole really very well done. So that was good. Two things on the good side. The outstanding papers as a group. I mean, I'm not pick out individuals, but as a group, those who did the mission, one sort of country in the third world that has it has sort of become Christian in the last few hundred years or has had a mission. You know, missions have gone. They're writing on Japan and places like that. Those were on the whole very well. You know, as a group, they were they were done better than any of the others. So that was very encouraging because in a way, that's one of the hardest papers to do, you know. So I was very pleased to see that on the other side. I forgot to say I hadn't really say anything about notes and things like that. I mean, I generally regard footnotes, bibliographies, etc. as works of fiction. I don't really believe that anyone reads these books that they put their books unless, well, sometimes I'm wrong. I mean, sometimes people quote from them in ways which show that they actually have read them, and that's fine. And that's basically what I want to say, is that if you should indicate some of you have not indicated your sources and so on, and you should do that. I mean, I do not care whether you have 30 books down there, because I know as well as you do that you have not read 30 books. But I would like to know what you have read and where you get it from and what you're basing it on so that I get some idea of the kind of thing you're reading.

You know? So those of you who didn't do that, I didn't take I didn't say anything this time round because I didn't I realized I haven't said anything about it before in this class. So if you would remember that for next time, it also helps you because then you remember later on where you got it from. You know, it's a sort of two way thing, and that's useful because I do look at them, you know, I'm skeptical, but not you see what I mean? All right, Here you go. No, no, no. Whether you put footnotes and notes, beginning notes upside down, you know, I mean, I really don't mind about that as long as I can find it, you know? Yeah, because the reason I don't mind about it from that point of view is because I write for all kinds of different publications and so on, and I get thoroughly fed up with copy editors, you know, who tell me off because I don't know what their hell style is. And I write back and say, Well, you have it. You have a third magazine or whatever that, you know, has asked for something in the last week. And they all have different styles and things like this. And how on earth do you expect me to know? You know, So I just I should remember because even if I learn, because everybody does things differently, you know, and I mean, my favorite publisher is one which has this weird spelling system. I mean, don't ask me where they got the spelling from, but they insist on things like connection with an x, c, o, and then x i, o n yes, and things like that, you say. And they get very hot under the collar.

You know, they think I'm I'm sort of mentally subnormal because I keep forgetting. And I said, but you are the only people who want it spelt like that. You say, Is there a place in the world where people spell like. Yeah it is a, it is a recognized alternative spelling and it is actually the correct spelling. I mean, I give that to them. I mean, you know, if, if you are thinking of the Latin origin of the word, that is the correct way to spell it. And the fact that nobody does, is it totally irrelevant? You say a British publisher. Oh, you knew that. Yeah, but I have now I have arguments with them all the time. I said, but nobody does this to say, Oh, but the Oxford, apparently it's given first in the Oxford English Dictionary so I haven't got enough money to buy the Oxford English Dictionary. I just read the paper and it's spelt differently, you know. And so this is the sort of thing when, when I was up against. So I'm not going to inflict this on you as long as what you do is, is justifiable, you know, and it's reasonable. I mean occasionally I do correctly. One of the things that is useful to get to know because you you will be corrected on this, things like dating and people put dates in different way but the best the standard. Way of doing this nowadays is today would be it would be written like this, 5th March 1998. And if you look at books, you know, printed books, you will see that that's the way it will be done almost invariably everywhere in a book. So it's useful to get into that because if you ever if you ever do do any writing and of course, the great thing about writing the date like this is that it's actually the most efficient way of doing it because you have no commas and you have no little teachers and you know, things like that.

It is actually the best way of doing it. And as I said, it has become now so standard in academic publications that you might just bear that in mind as something to get used to doing yourself if you're ever going to, you know, have any pretensions of publishing things, little things like that, try and think. But you know, some people invent paragraphs and other people don't. It's very tedious. My publisher that you're referring to you didn't you? You do not indent the first paragraph, but you do all the others and you know about that. You do that to do that, right? Yes, it's a do. But you wouldn't know now. I wouldn't know. And but that's what that's that they stick to that. So that's a recognized way of doing it, I would say. So they're not that weird and wonderful. So that's really. Any other questions like that? Yeah. What about starting a book and I get a DiChristina I refer to it several times. Yeah, you want to cite that they are. It's kind of common knowledge or for you? Yeah, this is very difficult one. If it's common knowledge, you know, you don't have to. I would say yeah, I mean with dates and things like that, you can assume that somebody somewhere can find out. The only time that you would want to cite it is if it is a controversial date, if it's not certain and you are quoting one possibility as opposed to another, that's useful if you come across dates that say in little brackets after the date an S or OS standing for new style or old style according to the calendar, put those in and so that you know because that's that's an actually different day or a different date things like that.

But otherwise you know I mean Columbus discovered America in 1492 is not something you need to footnote because apart from the kind of people who who think the world is flat, I mean, you know, and I don't bother about them too much. I mean, everybody else agrees with this, you know, except Columbus himself, who thought he'd found India. But that's another matter, you know. And the other question. No. Right. Okay, Let's pray together and we can begin. Father, thank you for all the many things that you give us. And Lord bless us. We pray this day as we work and as we study together. Help us in all that we do to grow closer to here, to love you better and to serve you more faithfully and more diligently. For Jesus precious namesake, we ask it. All right. Today, then I want to move on slightly to look at something else, which I have. Oh. Oh, yeah, sure. Yeah. You know, you're talking about three, right? Yeah. Talking about. You've got three, right? But it had to be exegesis. Doctrine and application. Right. And I had put under here the commentaries, the institutes and the sermons. Right. Okay. Now, where do I go from there? Now you're just saying. Um. Yes, right. The lack of doctrine in our in the churches today. Right. For instance, Because I remember. Oh, well, yes. I mean, all you need to do is, you know, go to church and listen to a sermon. Yes. Yeah, right. You don't do that. Okay. Well, no, The lack of doctrine is that people don't think in doctrinal categories. You see what tends to happen today if people are going to prepare a sermon, this happens all the time. Probably most people here are like this that you get.

You get your books out and what you do, you get your exegetical studies out. You know, you're going to preach on Ezekiel 37 or something. The Valley of the Dry Bones. You dig out every commentary you can find on Ezekiel and go through that and kind of work out your sermon from there. And then on that basis, you find something to preach about, you say is one way of doing it, or the other way is you've got something you want to say and you find somewhere in Scripture that you know is vaguely connected to what you want to say, you know what I mean? Right. And well, I take Ezekiel 37, a very good example. A few years ago, I went to a well-known church and heard this man who's a very well-known speaker, you know, speaking on Ezekiel 37. And his message was that God wanted everyone in that room that night to sing in towns. This was the message of Ezekiel 37. And obviously he wanted us all to sing in tongues, you know, And I wasn't sure whether he was working for one of these funny television programs, you know, like Candid Camera or something. We catch people in a silly moment or, oh, what? You know, But of course, he wasn't. He was serious, which was very sad. But, um, you know, certainly not. No. And I was very kind because I was there with a couple of friends and we said, well, one of two things is either we sit here and keep the because it wasn't to let people go home until everyone starts saying in tongues. That's a it's a social responsibility. We've got to leave, you know, quickly, because if we stay, I mean, we'll be here for the rest of our lives here now.

I mean, this is no good. So, you know. No, no, no, definitely not. Come on. And I have nothing against singing in tongues, by the way, but I just don't think it should be forced in that sort of way. You know what I mean? On that kind of basis. But that's an example of, you know, you've got something to say and you find a biblical passage that, you know, could very easily be interpreted in that direction. But I think what we don't do as a rule is we don't sit down and think, how does this fit into the wider biblical message? They say, what is the actual teaching of this? What is it saying about God? Who God is, what God does, who is Christ, What does Christ do? Who is man? What you know, what about the fall? What about salvation? What about these Does this doctrine, you know, and where does it come in this verse? Where does it come in this passage? What did we learn in this passage about that? And because people don't ask those questions, you see, you can often get some very, you know, very entertaining and perfectly true sermons. And I was suggesting that people stand up on the pulpit and lie or anything like that. You know, I mean, they could say some very interesting things that we never forget. Going to hear a sermon on the church is a revelation. You know, one, it was Philadelphia. And we've got this marvelous sort of geographical exposition of where Philadelphia was and, you know, how many people live there and what they did for a living and and all this kind of thing. It all came out of some commentary, you know, all about Philadelphia, and that's fine.

And everybody said, go away. And it was very informative. It was a nice lecture, but it wasn't a sermon because you ask yourself, what is God saying to me about this? And so nothing, you know. This is the problem. And time and time again, I mean, when I go and evaluate sermons, which I don't do very much anymore because people have learned not to invite me. I have certain basic rules. Like the first minute somebody says, and the Greek says such and such. That's it. I switch off. And the reason I switch off is because everybody else has switched off at that point. You say. And what happens is people go out and make their say. One of several. They say, well, he's just arrived from the seminary. That's obvious. Or he's very well-educated and we're lucky to have such an educated pastor, you know, because he can quote Greek in the pulpit. Wow. You know, we're getting our money's worth here and then move on like this, but nobody's actually learning anything. You know, all you're really doing is showing off what you don't know because nine times out of ten people who quote Greek from the pulpit get it wrong. And the reason nobody picks up on this is because nobody knows what they're saying. You know, and I'm in this terrible position. I do know what they're saying. And I sit there and I want to scream at them and say, no, you're wrong, wrong, wrong. You know, and but this is not etiquette, isn't it? You can't do that. And maybe if I did it in tongues, it would be all right. You know, saying it would be great, you know, and but you see what I mean? And the reason they're wrong is not because, you know, they're particularly stupid or so on, but because they really don't know any Greek.

I mean, they've done a year at seminary and that's it. And so, you know, they've got this and they probably read it in a book with somebody who is equally wrong. And, you know, they're being perfectly sincere. I mean, I'm not questioning that. You know, the sincerity is there and the willingness and all, but. But really, they're blinding you with their erudition rather than actually bringing you closer to God. Now, you don't have to be all sort of, you know, airy fairy, intellectual, but you have to have a solid content of what you're saying. You have to say, Well, now what is God saying in this space and what is what is he saying to Ezekiel? What's he saying to you and me? You know, because it's the same God who basically wants the same thing from us, obedience, closer relationship to him, you know, and so on. And but you've got to think in terms of doctrine, in terms of sin and salvation, you know, and and this kind of thing in order to ask those questions of the text. I mean, otherwise you're spending your whole time, you know, on archeological details or things like that, which, I mean, maybe perfectly fascinating, but they're not actually getting you any closer to the message for what you want to get across is preliminary stuff that you need to know. I'm not saying I'm not trying to at, you know, pooh pooh any of this or downgraded or anything like that. Don't get me wrong, it's important, but it's preliminary. It's probably gonna be I can use a Greek word, you know, to add to the to the to the text and what is appropriate for the classroom. I mean what I can say to you here, you know, in within these four walls, you know, between consenting adults and so on, I mean, it's not something you want to communicate to the wider public simply because it doesn't connect with where they are.

You know, I mean, my mother goes to church and our minister always has a children's talk and she comes when she comes away. If I ask what you know, what what happened, she always tells the talks about the children's talk, never the sermon. She doesn't understand the sermon, you know, because it's one of these sort of intellectuals. And that the children's talk is when he sort of says what he thinks because, you know, he's trying to download it to the children. And that's what communicates to her. And it's such a pity, you know, because she ought to be listening to the sermon, but it's just above her. And she's not stupid. I mean, it's not a stupid person, but she just doesn't, you know, like, I mean, all this man said this and Colbert said that and so on, you know, And I mean, these aren't her neighbors. What's her name like? It doesn't fit. So in a sense, you've got to you have to kind of relate to who you're talking to and not feel bad about it. I you know, that's the thing. People are made to feel stupid when they do this kind of thing, but actually they're communicating. And that's the main thing. I mean, content is vitally important, but you need to get it across. If you're not getting it across, you're really wasting your time. And you're not only wasting your time, you're doing harm to your your calling because what you're doing is convincing people that they don't want another one of you, you know, and next time they'll get an entertainer. You know, next time they'll get Tammy Faye. Yeah. And the church's mascara bill will sort of soar. But. But there won't be any more commentaries on the shelf.

You know what I mean? It sure is. Yeah. Is there a common place for. Talking about the city itself. Yes, I think this is what this is what Sunday school is for, it seems to me, and sort of midweek things and things like that, because that's teaching. It's the difference between teaching and preaching. Now, the trouble with the modern church is because people have never been taught you can't really preach properly because there's no point really going on and on and on about Abraham making all kinds of assumptions about Abraham, you know, based on the thing that everybody's supposed to know about Abraham, when half the congregation sitting there thinking, Who is Abraham and what is he talking about? You know what I mean? It doesn't work because you haven't got the background knowledge for you to be able to build on that. So there is definitely, of course, that there's a there's a place for teaching, but you've got to have it clear in your mind that preaching is more than teaching because preaching is really exhorting people to take the teaching to heart, you know, and to actually sort of make something of it in their lives. It's not adding more information. The information should be there already. And I admit that is a big problem in our churches today. You say you can see it in the New Testament, you see, because when the Apostle Paul went to, you know, Corinth or someone like that, I mean, he went to a synagogue and taught them and he could teach them properly in the synagogue because those people were well taught, you know, they'd read their Bibles and they knew what was going on. And they might disagree with what Paul had to say, but they were all in the same, you know, the same level.

Whereas when he went to Athens, you remember that and he stood up on the abacus in Athens and started going on. I mean, all these philosopher types were sort of sitting there. Was he talking about resurrection? Well, who's that? You know? And so he didn't get anywhere in Athens. I mean, a couple of people were converted, but there was no church started. Why? Because the people had no background. They weren't taught. They didn't know what he was saying. And that's brought out very clearly. And Act 17, you know, So I think that we have to learn this lesson and say, well, yes, there is definitely there's a time for teaching. Oh, yes. And I'm pleased. I mean, don't anyone misunderstand me. I think it's all terribly important and that we should know these things and have a very clear background. But don't confuse this with good preaching, you know, because the preaching is putting it in the heart and as challenging people should be challenging people. If you're just lecturing in the pulpit, you're not you're not going to convict anybody. You know, I mean, I sit here and I talk for an hour and I lecture, but I mean, I'm not fooling myself into thinking that I'm persuading anybody to change their opinions or anything. I'm not trying to say what I mean. I'm not I'm not sort of making and trying to make you change your life and sort of go out of here and, you know, start reading books or, you know, doing sort of weird things like that. You know? I mean, I've just basically been paid to sit here and entertain you for an hour. But fundamentally, this is teaching and it's not the same thing as preaching. And I don't confuse the two.

You ever think about taking a class? Yeah. Yeah. Have you ever. Have you ever heard of things like, you know, sort of keeping good relations with colleagues? Do you have any awareness of the rest of the world? This is my preaching class now. Well, of course, I have thought about it several times, but I mean, people have everyone has their own sort of style and so on. But what I'm saying is it's basically a matter of of principle. You say it's not a question of style. I mean, I don't really care whether you thump or pulpit or whatever you do, as long as what you do is what you do is what comes naturally to you. And preaching class, as it seems to me. I'm mainly concerned with that kind of thing, I guess. I mean, you know, whereas the theological principle of what preaching is, what it's about, what it means and what you should be aiming for, I think that's something you kind of got to put together first before you start learning the techniques. Because anyway, I mean, obviously you can be a very convincing speaker. I mean, Adolf Hitler was a very convincing speaker. But the content was a little weird, you know? You know what I mean? So I think that's what preaching classes do, isn't it? I mean, isn't that basically what you're doing? You're learning how to do it? Does it? Or do you spend a whole lot of. I don't know, what do they spend a whole lot of time going over? Like what goes into it content. How do they say, I haven't taken a preaching class here, so I don't know. Sorry. Or any of idea. The fact that these are former can't really give you an opportunity to.

It was then basically that the biplanes. You're seeing the good work, you know, in those way. No, but the doubt I mean, this is the one thing that people probably do not emphasize today very much. That is a very key thing. And you just need to think, you know, like, what is this? What is the message? What's what's you know, what's God trying to say to us in this in this verse? And you don't have to be, you know, sort of mechanical about it. You may, in fact, in a sermon, have only one thing that you really trying to say, and you're going to say it in 20 different ways because you've got 20 different types of people there, you know, and all of whom will hear it in their own way. And the only thing I can any advice I can give you is never aim anything in a sermon that anybody in the congregation in particular for two reasons. One, because either they're that they don't come that Sunday, so you've wasted your time or because they don't hear it, you know, that's a waste of time. And then the other thing is be prepared for people to react in their own way. That has nothing to do with what you actually said. This is very common. I mean, I've had people come up to me and they say, oh, I want you to come. And I remember one very, one occasion very well. I want to come and talk to you, to come and talk to a friend of mine about death. And I said, Oh, we're so happy to do that. And said, yes, it was just your sermon this morning, sort of, you know, made me think about that. And I said, I wasn't talking about death, you know.

And and she said, Well, no, she said, but I just got the impression that you're the sort of person who would know what to say. So but, you know, I respect her for that because you see her her whole sort of life, that was where she was at. And you're never going to get a congregation where everybody's in the same place and everybody's thinking the same thing. And you're always going to get people who think like that. You know, that's where they are. And the worst thing you can say is your stupid person. You know, you weren't listening to a word I said, and I wasn't talking about that at all. And next week, you know, for goodness sake, take the cotton wool out of your ears. And, you know, I mean, that's a disaster. And it's also wrong because God, you know, speaks to people in different ways. I mean, this often happens to me. I mean, I go and listen to people speak and I haven't a clue what they're saying. And all I sort of feel in my heart is we don't want this. No, he's not coming again. You know, I get that feeling very strongly. But I couldn't actually tell you what was being said. Afterwards, you know, So I sometimes have this gut reaction to. You know, know that sometimes the other way is anywhere. That. All right. For now. Okay. Right. Okay. Today I want to move on next stage. I then I'm going to come back. But I just want to sort of, you know, feed you with different things as we go along. And I want today to grow a little bit. We've looked already at Luther and the Reformation in Germany, in Northern Europe a bit.

And we looked at singly in the anabaptists in Switzerland. And then I looked at just briefly at Calvin. I mean, I will come back to say some more about this in France and so on. But I want today to just begin to talk a little bit about the English Reformation. The difference between the English Reformation and the other countries is that the English Reformation is far more interesting to the average person. I mean, if you're interested, if you're into things like justification by faith and, you know, baptism and stuff like that, I mean, obviously Luther and Zwingli and Calvin and the Anabaptists and what have you are going to attract your attention. However, you are also a very small minority of the population. I would say if you're interested in sex, divorce, murder, etc. then of course the English Reformation is made for you. And doubly so because doctrine is not really part of it very much. You know, you don't have to exercise your your abstract intellectual thoughts. All you have to do really is, you know, think that this is you're watching Dallas or Dynasty or something and you connect to it. Now, we laugh about this, but let's face it, the English Reformation is really the only one that Hollywood makes movies about. You know, so you have to think about this. And there's a reason because it has that side to it. All right. Well, I don't to be sound too cynical or anything, but, you know, we'll get into this. The British Isles as a as a unit, as, you know, divided into four nations today, despite what people say, there really isn't a great deal to choose among them. I mean, if you go to Scotland or Ireland or Wales or England, it's all pretty much the same sort of thing.

You know, the taste the same and. Well, all right, All right. You know what I mean? And, you know, the heating doesn't work in the same way, and you have just as much trouble flushing the toilets in Scotland as you do in, you know, Cornwall or whatever. So there's kind of greater unity than there used to be. But when you get back to the 16th century, these four nations were really quite different. And this is what we need to look at, because the Reformation happened in a very different way in these different places. To start then with England. England by itself. Not counting Scotland, Wales or Ireland is almost exactly the same size as Alabama. In the 16th century. It also had the same population as Alabama has now. The difference is that 16th century England produced Shakespeare, Marlowe, Sir Francis Drake and so on, you know, and Alabama produces what's right. Bear Bryant basketball players who strangle their coaches and get away with it and so on. Well, anyhow, you see, you can't always have everything. But that's that's what you need to remember to see that sort of size. Now, in wider, longer historical terms, England was unique in Europe in the 16th century in having been a nation state. That is to say, a nation with its own language, its own sort of social organization and so on, and a state with an administrative structure, a centralized government and an effective tax collection system and all that kind of thing far longer than anywhere else. In fact, England, as a nation state, was already more than 500 years old. In 1500. I mean, the government, the government organization, the division of England in two counties took place in the 10th century. So around 930, 940, it's over a thousand years.

Now, you say and there has been a tremendously long continuity of government, administration and general sense of where you are. Now, this is not true of most other European countries. I mean, to give you an example, just a few years ago when Germany reunited, there was a big argument in Germany about where to cite the capital, you know, whether they should go back to Berlin or whether they should stay in Bonn or maybe even find a third place. Well, imagine, you know, I said this to a German friend at the time. I said, imagine if we had this kind of debate in England, you know, where should we put the capital? And you said, well, how about Liverpool, you know? I mean, I'm sure everybody would think, well, this was you know, you had quite a good sense of humor. And, you know, you might even people might even vote for it, but it would never happen because it's just inconceivable. I mean, even if you did it, it would still never happen because, you know, the government could go off somewhere and people would just think, oh, well, goodbye, good riddance, and we won't hear any more of them because London will still always be the capital. You see what I mean? It's so deeply rooted in the in the national consciousness that you cannot do that. You can't change that any more. You can say what you like, but it will never change. Now, one of the the results of this is that in some ways England is is the most conservative European country. In some ways it has a it is the only country with a medieval style monarchy left. Other countries have monarchies, but not on the same scale, not of the same type.

It has all sorts of funny things, you know, holdovers from previous eras that you wouldn't imagine. It was still functioning, but they are, and everybody's very proud of it. You know, we've been doing this for the last thousand years and that kind of carry on and so on. And occasionally it annoys people, you know, who think that perhaps it's time to change. But basically things go on as they always have. That's one side. But the other side, which also has to be borne in mind, is that the country is very stable. It's very peaceful. It is a very safe place to live. And in its own funny little way, it can be very progressive. You may not believe that, but it's true in its own in terms of social development, for instance, social welfare, that kind of thing. I mean, a lot of the ideas, inventions and so on that we have, you know, have come out of this over the years because of this long stability I see over many centuries. So there's a good side as well as the other side. I mean, I don't want to pretend that it's all roses because it's not. But, you know, you have to understand this. This is very important for the Reformation, because the Reformation had to deal with this kind of thing, you know, with a country which was not going to have a revolution. It was just not going to have that. And so, you know, if there was going to be a reformation in England, it would have to happen in a way which was compatible with what was already there. You see, you couldn't just hive off, you know, somewhere like Manchester and call it Geneva, you know, and just pretend that it was its own little independent country.

You could do that in France because France had no fixed borders. I mean, it had a very kind of, you know, exactly where the frontier with Germany or even Spain ran was not altogether clear. And so, you know, there was room for these funny little places like in Nevada, like Ohio's, like Geneva, you know, where you could have Protestant experiments growing up and so on. And they were kind of fringy on the edges of France. This was possible in France, in England, this was not possible because there was nowhere to hide. There was no little fringe place on the edge. And you say there was just England and that was that. All right. I'll come back to this in a moment for Wales, for those who are interested. It was a completely different thing. Wales had no national unity other of the modern kind. It had been conquered by England in the 13th century, in 1283. And at the time of the Reformation, it was under military rule. It was ruled in as a as a kind of military outpost from London. And one of the things that Henry the Eighth did shortly after breaking with the Roman church was Integrate Wales into England. In 1536, Wales became part of England officially. Of course, it kept its own language, its own culture and so on, and it remained its own country. But legally, officially it was part of England after 1536. Scotland was a completely different thing again. Scotland had never been a truly united country. It was divided. It was subdivided along ethnic lines. And that is to say that in the south and east around Edinburgh here, most of the people were in fact English or Anglo-Saxon. I should say, You know, in other words, the language they spoke was a dialect called Scots.

But it's a dialect of English, in actual fact. And, you know, it was spoken in the lowlands of Scotland, the flat of the reasonably flat area. Coast in the Highlands was full of Irish immigrants, basically people who had gone there from Ireland originally and they were the Scots people we call the Scots. The Scots came from Ireland in the first place and they emigrated across there in the fourth, fifth, sixth centuries. They spoke a completely different language, the Gaelic language, which was not anything like English, and their whole culture and way of life was tribal. And this is what you think of when you think of Scotland today, you know, kilts and all that kind of thing. It's the highland culture that you're thinking of. Not the lowland culture, but for most people who are who are actually Scottish themselves, I mean real Scottish people. I mean, the Highland culture is about as close to them as you know. I don't know, maybe Cajun culture is to you. You know what I mean? Like, it's something you recognize. You've come across and you've seen it before somewhere, but it's not really part of your daily life. And this is something you need to remember because you can go to Scotland looking for Bonnie, Prince, Charlie and all that kind of thing, you know, And people will just direct you to a psychiatric hospital and think, what is this? You know? So you have to be very careful about this. That's the sort of highland now in the middle in the Middle Ages with a third group which has disappeared. Fortunately, these were the so-called Picts. I see T. S and nobody knows anything about them, so I'm not going to go on about them. But they were there.

Yeah, well, that's right. Well, they got you know, they got, they got sort of absorbed by the others and then on the fringes up in Shetland, Orkney and Caithness up this way and a little bit round the Hebrides and so on. We're Vikings, Normans, a fourth group. Now these groups of course, had very little in common with each other, but in the Middle Ages I think it was the year 843. So in the top of my mind that they came together on paper to form a United Kingdom of Scotland. This was, of course, more in theory than in reality, because the different groups carried on the way they did before. I think it was the year 843, I believe that's right around then anyway. So Scotland existed notionally as a kingdom, but it was, as I say, internally, very deeply divided. And because of these different cultures, different languages, I mean completely different ways of life, you see. And the Kings of England had a claim to the throne of Scotland. You know, they've, they've, they've tried to pretend that they should be the kings of Scotland. And in the Middle Ages, in about 1200 or so after that, they tried to enforce this claim. And for a while they nearly succeeded. But in 1314 there was the great Battle of Bannockburn when the Scots beat the English, and the English went home and more or less left Scotland to its own devices. So after that, Scotland was in effect, an independent country. But it was very weak, as I say, very small in terms of population, very internally divided. So it wasn't a major player on the European stage or anything like that, but it was independent. And this is important because when the Reformation came, the Scottish Reformation was totally different from the English one, and that's the main reason why, because Scotland was a different country at that time.

All right. So we need to bear that in mind. Ireland. Well, basically, for most of the Middle Ages, Ireland, like the highlands of Scotland, was a tribal society. Gaelic speaking, Irish speaking Irish language, completely different, as I say, from English crime. But this tribal society was disorganized. Well, like any tribe, you know, it was they fought each other and so on. And as Christianity spread in Ireland, the church like this, because the church found political instability very difficult to live with. And so eventually in the year 1155, the Pope asked the King of England, Henry the second to invade Ireland and conquer it in order to give peace and quiet to the church so that they could get on with their evangelistic mission. And, you know, without having hordes of tribesmen, you know, coming down and sort of looting the monastery every once in a while. Now, the king of England, Henry, the second, who incidentally, did not speak English, I mean, he wasn't English and he was Norman as far as that went. But nevertheless, he was king of England, didn't invade Ireland immediately, but he did eventually get there. He landed in 1169 in Dublin, and within a couple of years had subdued the country and the Irish church and all the Irish chiefs swore allegiance to him. Henry thereupon went home thinking he had conquered Ireland. In fact, of course, all that had really happened was that he had managed to establish a foothold on the east coast of Ireland, and gradually this foothold became more and more securely planted there. But most of the country remained in its tribal state that it had always been in before tribal Ireland. We can't really say very much about because nobody really knows very much about it.

I mean, you know, it was a tribal society and that was that. English Ireland, though, I mean, the the part of Ireland that was under the control of the English king gradually developed social institutions similar to those of England. And although it was not directly under the control of England, the Irish, these people in the eastern part of the country around Dublin recognized the English king as their overlord and great and basically were very proud of being English. I mean, they you know, they thought that was a good thing and they developed their own sort of Anglo Irish type culture in this particular part of the country at that time. The area around Dublin where they settled was known as the Pale Ale. And of course, this has given us an expression in English. If you live beyond the pale meaning mean you live your uncivilized, you see, or outside this area. And this is where this expression came from. Now, this is the way things had developed over the Middle Ages, and this might have gone on happily ever after, except that in the 15th century, 100 years before the Reformation, the English crown, the English royal family fell apart because of internal squabbling. Now, I know this never happens in your family, but it did happen in the royal family at that time. And to make a very long story short, they fought it out for the better part of a hundred years between different branches of the royal family as to who was going to be king. And this gradually. Well, there were two factions, as we know, the one, the house of Lancaster, the fjords. And again, I'm compressing this because it was a very complicated business. But in 1461. Henry the sixth, who was of the Lancastrian branch, was deposed by Edward, the Fourth of York.

That was 1461. Nine years later, Henry made a comeback because Edward was either too human or too stupid to do what he should have done, which was, you know, put paid to Henry. So Henry was able to make a comeback nine years later, very unusually for the Middle Ages. So this is what you get if you're kind to your enemies. Anyway, Henry came back and tried to take over the government again, whereupon eight or this time there really was a battle and Henry was executed. Or what happened? Starve to death or something. Anyway, he didn't come back a third time, that's for sure. And so it looked as if the House of York had won and Edward carried on. I mean, he was king until he died in 1483. And he was succeeded by his son, Edward the fifth in 1483, who was a boy of nine, ten, something like that. Anyhow, he couldn't rule by himself, obviously. So who took over? But Edward, the fourth younger brother. Richard. Richard wasn't too happy about ruling on behalf of his young nephew. And so he put his nephew and his nephews, younger brother in the Tower of London, and they were never seen again. These are the princes in the tower. And of course, they have given, you know, food for novelists, etc., ever since. I mean, what happened to them? I don't know. But they're not alive now that we can be fairly certain about anyhow. Richard then became king as Richard the third, to the great consternation of a large part of the nobility, which was convinced that Richard had murdered them. And this, of course, is what the argument is all about. Did Richard the third murder the boys in the tower? And people still argue this.

I mean, this whole societies, you can join the Richard the Third society and, you know, and run around in shining armor and all sorts of things, pretending that Richard was innocent. And, you know, it's amazing. But anyway, this was the signal for revolt among the nobility. Who were they going to get as a plausible candidate to, you know, contest the throne? Well, there did happen to be a man who's not a descendant of Henry the sixth, but I believe Henry's sister or something like that. Henry Tudor, who was the only surviving adult male from the Lancastrian branch. And people rallied round him. And in 1485, Henry Tudor defeated and killed Richard the third. And became King himself as Henry the seventh inaugurating the Tudor Dynasty, a new dynasty on the throne of England at that time. Henry The seventh was more or less accepted by most people as king, but not by everybody. There were still people around who thought that Edward the Fifth was alive. And in the years after 1485, when this great battle took place, various pretenders to the throne appeared. This commonly happens if you kill a king or somebody. The royal family, they turn up a few years later, you know, like the Grand Duchess Anastasia and all this. You know, there's always somebody going to pretend that they're the real ones. Well, there were various people pretending to be Edward the fifth, one of whom, when managed to get to Ireland and managed to persuade the Irish parliament, that's to say the English parliament in Dublin, that he was genuine. And raised an army and so on. And Henry the seventh had to go go over there and, you know, show them what was what. And it was all a very difficult situation.

After that happened, Henry realized that Ireland was a potential danger because anybody could do this. You see, someone could go there, you know, spin a yarn in the Irish parliament, raise an army there, and then contest his power in England. And so in 1494, he sent one of his deputies, a man called Sir Edward Twinings, to Ireland and told him to get a law passed in the Irish Parliament, which said that in future the Irish Parliament could not make any laws unless they had been previously approved by the King in England and his council. So in other words, the Irish Parliament could debate, but if they wanted to make laws or decisions of any kind, they had to refer them to London first, send them to the king and get his approval. And then it was all right. This findings law was in force until 1782. A long time. And it's extremely important that you realize this because the course of the Reformation in Ireland, which was very different from that in England, was largely determined by this rather peculiar constitutional situation. Now, a lot of Irish people today, Catholics, of course, will tell you that the Reformation was an it was an attempt by English Protestants, you know, to exterminate Irish Catholics or something like this. You said, I'll give you some tale of this kind. This is not true. The subjection of Ireland to England had nothing whatsoever to do with the Reformation. That's my point. It happened a generation earlier. No doubt it made introducing the Reformation in Ireland easier than it might otherwise have been. That is altogether possible. That, however, is not the same thing as saying that Protestantism enslaved the Irish, which is what most Irish Catholics seem to think say.

So that's a completely different picture. And that's you need to know that because if you do any study of Ireland or Irish history or something, if you don't realize these things, you might just fall for the propaganda you see, which is which is very bad. Okay. This is Henry the seventh. Henry the seventh was a very clever man. I mean, we have to hand it to him. He really was. And he realized that the best hope for the future was to secure diplomatic alliances with the other countries of Europe, which would create stability in the region and enable him to consolidate his rule. So what did he do? Well, he decided he would marry his children off to neighboring kings, princes and what have you, and thereby cement alliances with them. And, you know, he was remarkably successful at doing this because he had a daughter, Margaret, whom he married to the king of Scotland, James, the fourth Church of Scotland. And although this had no significance at the time, because Scotland, as I say, was small, weak and everything else, it did, you know, at least create some kind of connection with Scotland and in the long run of history. It was to prove very, very important because the present queen is descended from this marriage. She is not a descendant of Henry the Eighth or Queen Elizabeth the first or any of them. She is a descendant of this marriage of Margaret, the daughter of Henry, the seventh to the king of Scotland. Because they produced their son, James, the first person who produced a daughter, Mary, the famous Mary Queen of Scots, who produced a son, James the sixth, who in 1603 became king of England as James the first and is the James of the King James Bible, you see.

So that's the connection there, that sort of generation descent. Mary, Queen of Scots is, of course, the most famous of this family, most notorious and so on. But actually, the least important, you know, this is how Hollywood distorts everything. You know, she really doesn't matter very much in terms of actual history, but she's more romantic than than the rest. However, we'll look at this in due course, but that's one of the marriage alliances that Henry the seventh made. Another one was that he married his daughter, Mary, after the King of France. Louis the 12th? Yeah. You still talking about that? Henry the seventh. Yeah, there's a Henry the seventh in his kids. So Margaret got married off to James, the fourth of Scotland. And as I say, that was the long term result of that. Mary got married to Louis the 12th, but Louis the 12th died shortly after, so that was a bit of a disaster. But nevertheless, to marry your daughter to the king of France was quite a coup, really, you know, because France was a big, important country and a long term enemy of England. And for Henry the seventh, to have been able to pull that one off, you know, showed he was quite a quite a guy. His eldest son, who was Prince Arthur, he decided to marry off to Catherine, whom we call Catherine of Aragon, the youngest daughter of Ferdinand and Isabella. Of Spain. This was the great success of Henry the seventh diplomacy, because, of course, Spain was now the richest country in the world thanks to the discovery of America. And see which happened while Henry the seventh was on the throne. You see, this was all sort of living history as far as he was concerned.

So he thought this was a great thing. You know, Catherine of Aragon is going to become queen of England, and this will give us lots of money apart from anything else. And Catherine, because she was a younger daughter, didn't have tremendous prospects in some ways. And so her parents did, in fact, give her an enormously huge dowry, which came in very handy indeed for Henry. I think it paid the the national budget for two or three years. You know, it was quite successful anyhow. The trouble was Arthur was not very well. And when by the time Catherine arrived in England and was going to marry Arthur, Arthur was on his deathbed and in fact he was only 18. Poor guy. But he suffered from two. Tuberculosis. And I think what disease It was, tuberculosis. It was. And anyhow, they married. But six months later, Arthur was dead. And this caused tremendous problem for Henry. Because where was he going to find the money to pay back the dowry and see if Catherine went back to Spain? Well, my you know, this was going to cost England an awful lot of money. So that was ruled out. But fortunately, Henry had a second son, also called Henry, and he thought, well, we can palm Catherine off on him. The trouble was this was against the law of the church because you were not allowed to marry your brother in law. Even if your husband was dead. All right. This meant proving. That in fact, the marriage between Arthur and Katherine had never really happened. In other words, it was never consummated. I mean, it obviously happened as a ceremony, but, you know, it hadn't gone any further than that. And the argument was that Arthur was too ill for them actually to live together.

Now, this is probably true. Katharine swore that it was true. Everybody believed that it was true and so on. And in the end, the pope granted a dispensation allowing Henry the eighth, as he was to become to marry Catherine of Aragon. They married. They did not have time to get married before Henry the seventh died. So Henry the eighth actually married when he was already king. He became king at 18, in 1509. And he married Catherine of Aragon a few months later. It was a very happy and very successful marriage for a long time. And there was every prospect that Catherine would produce lots of wonderful children, and that would solve the whole problem because, of course, Henry needed to have children. He needed to have sons, a son in particular, who would inherit the throne after him because there were still people running around claiming to be Edward the Fifth. You see, I mean, it was not an entirely secure position. Well, Catherine had one miscarriage after another. Eventually, in 1516, she managed to produce a daughter, Mary, who grew up to grew to adulthood. But that was the only child of Kathryn's who survived. And as she got older, Henry got more and more desperate. And in 1526. When Katherine turned 40, which was generally reckoned to be the end of her childbearing years, Henry came to the conclusion that if he didn't do something and didn't do it fast, he wasn't going to have a credible successor. And that is where the English Reformation begins. But I'm going to have to leave it there for now. I have to leave a little bit earlier today. We'll come back on Tuesday. Tell all your friends that this course is now getting interesting. And so if they'd like to come along on Tuesday, you know, we'll get into the the marital life of Henry, the A's, etc..

Okay. And I shall do my best to explain the ins and outs of it, not just because I want to keep you amused, but because you really need to understand it, because you can understand the Reformation unless you do. All right. Okay. We'll come back on Tuesday. Have a good weekend.