A2 June Edexcel Ocr History 2010 Essay

287 WordsFeb 20, 20152 Pages
However, on the other hand, it can be counter argued that the decision to take sides during the civil war was based primarily on class and determined by socio-economic status, wealth and ultimately the class structure of the 1640’s. As Antony Fletcher states, ‘popular support was crucial to the parliamentarians’ strength.’ (Source 8) The word ‘popular’ highlights the important emphasis on the masses and that class was a deciding factor. It was the middle sort who made up the mass of the population and therefore to say their support is crucial is also to say that stereotypically, the middle sort were those who fought for and supported the ideology of, parliament. The ‘spontaneous enthusiasm of the yeoman families’(source 8) to fight in battle for the Puritan oligarchy reiterates how the middle sect were fighting on behalf of parliament because of their status in society. Source 8 agrees with the fact that those who fought for Parliament did so, because of class as a determining factor; men like ‘tradesman Nehemiah Wallington… clothier Samuel Priestley… and townsman John Coulton, sustained the parliamentarian cause in the field.’(Source 8) These entrepreneurial men, were independent from the kind and could survive without inherited wealth. They had generated their own background of wealth through hard work and innovative ideas, and fought for parliament because they did not need to rely on the king for their continued success. Their class – as the middle sect, fought for parliament because the hierarchical structure was something they regarded as unimportant to their success and in some ways, even hindered their development and progress. Clarendon argues that Leeds, Halifax and Bradford fought for Parliament because they were wholly dependent upon these places on

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