Were Thomas Cromwell reforms the most significant development in government? Cromwell made a lot of changes in government during being chief minister for 7 years for the king. One of the main things that helped him stay In power for so long and that got him the trust and support of the king was managing to get the annulment between Henry and Catherine of Argon which Thomas Wolves, earlier failed to do. Cromwell was thought to have modernized the government system to the extent that Elton who is a very well respected historian said it was “revolutionary’.
He reformed what used to be a very medieval style feudal system, where it was easy or one person to dominate, such as Wolves, into a modern government, based on a bureaucracy, organized by capable people following specific rules and procedures. Cromwell was credited with two reforms of major importance. Whereas in the past, individuals who were never systematically audited and bound by procedures had received the king’s income, Cromwell introduced a bureaucratic model.
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In the Thomas Cromwell model, departments received money from pre-speckled sources – there was meant to be no overlapping – and paid out money for reasons that had to be sanctioned first. Each department was rigorously audited. They were run the same way as the Duchy of Lancaster was. This had been set up to administer the lands and rights that had come to the crown from the house of Lancaster. The two most famous departments (the Court of Augmentations and the Court of First Fruits and Tenths) were created to look after Henrys income from the Church following the dissolution of the monasteries.
Because they had legal status to adjudicate over disputes, they were given the title ‘court’. The second major reform introduced by Cromwell was the Privy Council. Previous to this, a council had existed that was made up of up to 100 men to advise the king. However, very few of them ever attended and the system usually ended up with one strong man dominating, such as Wolves. The Privy Council was made up of twenty men who were specifically chosen to have responsibility for the day-to-day running of government.
The ability of these men and the exclusivity of the privy Council meant that, In theory, no Individual could dominate it, as the men in the Council should have been more than able to ‘hold their own’. Elton believed that these reforms swept away the old medieval system of government and introduced a system that survived with few changes for another 300 ears. Those in government after Cromwell were meant to be able men whose sole intention was to do their best for the government as opposed to their own self- advancement.
Wolves was very important in making Cromwell as powerful as he became, this is because one of the first things Cromwell does is get Henrys divorce to Catherine of Argon and because Wolves had failed to do this it made Cromwell look really good to Henry and this was the start of Cromwell revolution in government because It enabled him to do a lot of things because he had the support and trust of Henry and this was mainly Influenced by the Annulment he managed to establish but Wolves must have been doing something right because he managed to stay In the office for 1 5 years which is an achievement in itself.
Some argue that even through already been done, and for example Wolves had reduced the number of people in the Privy Council. It was established sometime in the 1 ass’s and replaced the kings larger councils of the past, which could be as large as 70 with 20 able trusted men. It provided a more efficient bureaucratic government and prevented one or two councilors becoming too powerful like Wolves had. It became the most important part of government and functioned effectively through the Pilgrimage of Grace and Edward VIC’S minority.
It was Cromwell that introduced the Act of Union in 1536 which enabled Wales to have representation in parliament. Local government reform brought localities under the control of central government and Cromwell also gave more power to the council of the north. The church also became under control of the state as a result of the reformation and Henry extended his power by becoming its supreme head. The parliament became England’s law making body, the financial yester was reorganized and the chamber was regulated closely. It was during Henrys reign that perhaps the most important developments of government took place.
Cromwell changed a lot during his reign and even though Nelson had done some of these things, it was Cromwell who had done them better and expanded on them and he changed a lot of things and perhaps the most important thing in helping him make these changes was Henrys support which he Obviously needed otherwise Henry would have Just dismissed him. He established getting all of Henrys support because he made Henry very rich and one of the main wings that Cromwell did that Wolves didn’t manage to do was to get Henry the annulment to Catherine of Argon and this got Henrys support to which enabled Cromwell to make even more changes.
So Cromwell did make the most significant changes in government because he changed a lot, he modernized government, he made it more efficient, bureaucratic and independent and one of the main things that he changed was bringing the church under the state and also the Acts of Union’s Inch allowed Wales to have a say in parliament. And this was seemed to be a ‘Revolution in Government”.