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By Steven G. Ellis

The heritage of the British Isles is the tale of 4 peoples associated jointly via a strategy of nation development that was once as a lot approximately far-sighted making plans and imaginative and prescient as accident, twist of fate and failure. it's a background of revolts and reversal, familial bonds and enmity, the research of which does a lot to provide an explanation for the underlying stress among the international locations of recent day Britain.  

The Making of the British Isles recounts the advance of the countries of britain, Scotland, Wales and eire from the time of the Anglo-French twin monarchy lower than Henry VI during the Wars of the Roses, the Reformation main issue, the reigns of Henry VIII and Elizabeth I, the Anglo-Scottish dynastic union, the British a number of monarchy and the Cromwellian Republic, finishing with the acts of British Union and the recovery of the Monarchy.

 

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Extra info for The Making of the British Isles: The State of Britain and Ireland, 1450-1660

Sample text

In much of the Welsh marches, for instance, English settlement in the more fertile Lowlands (again, generally below the 400-foot contour line) had only partially displaced the native Welsh who had clung on stubbornly to their estates in the neighbouring uplands. Thus, for instance, the lordships of Pembroke and Glamorgan were divided into Welshries and Englishries, and the region exhibited a similar coincidence of geographical, cultural and administrative frontiers. 10 Patterns of settlement and social structures also reflected these divisions between highland and Lowland zones.

In other respects, however, it was possible to glimpse the beginnings of a greater Britain. 1300 had seen a comparatively uniform system of administration, law and feudalism extended from England to gain a secure hold in parts of Ireland, Scotland and Wales. Until 1603 this area of ‘writ culture’ was divided politically between the English and Scottish monarchies, but the basic governmental structures for a centralised British state already existed and might serve as a focus for greater unity. And for all its political rivalries, the British Isles was by 1450 increasingly under the control of native dynasties.

Although the first reference to surnames does not appear until 1498, they clearly developed in response to the endemic insecurity of the AngloScottish Marches from 1296 onwards; the period between 1333 and 1502 being marked by periodic truces and temporary abstinences of war, with no formal peace. In the west march the leading English border lineages were the Routledges and Nixons of Bewcastle, with Storeys and Forsters in Eskdale; in north Tynedale in the middle march the Charltons predominated, followed by Robsons, Dodds and Milburns; and in Redesdale the Halls were the leading clan, with Hedleys, Redes and Potts.

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