The ordered empire of Charles I, 1625-1642
in Revolution and empire
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Throughout English America, the contractualism of Charles I's empire helped colonial governments to resist the threatening disorder of their new environment. Charles's most enduring contribution to the politics of empire took place at the start of his reign when he endorsed his father's solution to the Virginia problem. The economic uses of power were more starkly illustrated in the plantation colonies than in New England, but the Puritans were no strangers either to the virtues of servitude and subordination or to the dangers of liberty. In 1622, Bermudans seized the opportunity presented by the Virginia Company's troubles to protest against their own Somers Islands Company. Autonomous local governments, much like that set up under the Virginia Company's Great Charter, would be part of Charles I's royal empire' in America. Both the Maryland and Massachusetts charters granted the context of developing plans for conciliar direction of American ventures.

Revolution and empire

English Politics and the American Colonies in the Seventeenth Century

Editor: Robert M. Bliss

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