Where history happened: the Wars of the Three Kingdoms part 2

In the second of two features on the Wars of the Three Kingdoms, Charlotte Hodgman talks to Professor John Morrill about what lay at the heart of the conflicts: the struggle for political and religious liberty

The ruined site of Clonmacnoise in County Offaly, Ireland. (Getty Images)

This article was first published in the April 2011 issue of BBC History Magazine 

The Wars of the Three Kingdoms were a series of bloody battles and rebellions that engulfed the kingdoms of England, Scotland and Ireland between 1638 and 1651. During these clashes, both the crown and parliament fought to exert their religious and political ideologies across all three territories – the culmination of which eventually led to the outbreak of civil war within and between the kingdoms. Charles I’s belief in his divine right as king, and his marriage to a Catholic princess, caused a great deal of friction between crown and parliament; his decision to dissolve parliament in 1629 strengthened many people’s belief that he wished for an absolutist monarchy.

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