How did the Glorious Revolution limit royal power in England?


Quick Answer

Due to the successful outcome of the Glorious Revolution, the British parliament gained vastly superior authority over taxation, a power long enjoyed by the king. Additionally, Parliament firmly established control over a number of aspects of the royal succession and over the deployment of the British military.

Continue Reading

Full Answer

In addition to ending the royal privilege of levying taxes, the Glorious Revolution also ended the king's prerogative to suspend laws at will and to make his own royal appointments. Some of the most important of the new limitations involved the army, with the king no longer allowed to muster and keep a standing force during peacetime without the express permission of Parliament. This sweeping change ultimately resulted in the armed forces being redubbed the British Army, as opposed to the Royal, a moniker that has continued throughout the modern era. Furthermore, the crown was no longer allowed to wage war independent of the support of Parliament or its willful funding of the enterprise.

Because much of the distress leading to the Glorious Revolution stemmed from over a century of post-Reformation struggle, the king was no longer allowed to be Catholic, to marry a Catholic or to choose a Catholic heir, a mandate made explicitly clear in the Bill of Rights passed in 1689. It would not be until 2013 that British royals could once again marry a Catholic.

The ultimate result of the Glorious Revolution was a steering away of the British system from absolute monarchy, a political feature that had prevailed in a number of other European states, such as France and Russia. It is with the Glorious Revolution that most historians consider the British constitutional monarchy to have truly coming into being, a model that would further inspire many nations' development in the ensuing centuries, including that of the United States.

Learn more about Modern Europe

Related Questions