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The Politics of Counsel in England and Scotland, 1286-1707$
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Jacqueline Rose

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780197266038

Published to University Press Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.5871/bacad/9780197266038.001.0001

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date: 20 November 2017

The Problem of Political Counsel in Medieval and Early Modern England and Scotland

The Problem of Political Counsel in Medieval and Early Modern England and Scotland

Chapter:
(p.1) 1 The Problem of Political Counsel in Medieval and Early Modern England and Scotland*
Source:
The Politics of Counsel in England and Scotland, 1286-1707
Author(s):

Jacqueline Rose

Publisher:
British Academy
DOI:10.5871/bacad/9780197266038.003.0001

This introduction examines both the problems involved in studying political counsel and those which counsel posed for its medieval and early modern practitioners. It first outlines different approaches scholars of counsel and councils have adopted, before highlighting the importance of moving from councils to counsel, considering the problems of evidence involved in studying each. It sketches the fairly constant framework of good rule and counsel’s central place therein from c.1286 to c.1707 and identifies phases of change. A new taxonomy of counsel’s various functions then considers both the positive roles that it played in supporting rule and lubricating political relationships, and the no less important, if somewhat less benign, uses of it to manipulate and manage government. Different groups of advisers and the political languages which they used to legitimate their roles as counsellors are briefly surveyed, before the criteria for evaluating ‘successful’ and ‘failed’ counsel are established.

Keywords:   councils, counsel, sovereignty, monarchy, kingship, tyranny, flattery, lordship, rebellion, oaths

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