English Conservatism

Topics: Conservatism, England, Liberalism Pages: 2 (454 words) Published: March 17, 2013
English conservatism, which was called Toryism, emerged during the Restoration (1660–1688). It supported a hierarchical society with a monarch who ruled by divine right. However the Glorious Revolution (1688 , which established constitutional government, led to a reformulation of Toryism which now considered sovereignty vested in the three estates of Crown, Lords, and Commons.[7]),

Conservatism developed in Restoration England from royalism. Royalists supported absolute monarchy, arguing that the sovereign governed by divine right. They opposed the theory that sovereignty derived from the people, the authority of parliament and freedom of religion. Robert Filmer’s Patriarcha: or the Natural Power of Kings, which had been written before the English Civil War, became accepted as the statement of their doctrine. Following the Glorious Revolutionof 1688, the conservatives, known as Tories, accepted that the three estates of Crown, Lords, and Commons held sovereignty jointly.[9] However Toryism became marginalized during the long period of Whig ascendency.[10] The party, which was renamed the Conservative Party in the 1830s, returned as a major political force after becoming home to both paternalistic aristocrats and free market capitalists in an uneasy alliance.[11]

In the 19th century, conflict between wealthy businessmen and the aristocracy split the British conservative movement, with the aristocracy calling for a return to medieval ideas while the business classes called for laissez-faire capitalism.[19]

Although conservatives opposed attempts to allow greater representation of the middle class in parliament, in 1834 they conceded that electoral reform could not be reversed and promised to support further reforms so long as they did not erode the institutions of church and state. These new principles were presented in the Tamworth Manifesto which is considered by historians to be the basic statement of the beliefs of the new Conservative...
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