Life in the British Empire at this time was very difficult. Over all, everyday life varied according to social class/status, during the renaissance especially. It was rather normal for families to be very large and to have many children even though marriages were arranged. In the eyes of men women were powerless and it was their job to cook, clean, and make the life for the men was an easy, comfortable one. The system in a typical home was like a circle of serving, the children would serve the women/adults, and the women would serve the men. Children were beaten at every behavior fault and only the daughters of very wealthy families were educated, most females didn’t know how to read or write. Most serfs or peasants worked in the fields and tended to their crops and aminals. Serfs were not weathy at all. They typically lived in one story homes with two rooms, a kitchen and a bedroom were the whole family slept. Serfs also lived in close quarters with the livestock they raised. A typical peasant would wake up at dawn, get dressed and head to the fields to plow, plant, water and harvest. Then headed off to bed to repeat the never-ending cycle the next day. Then came middle class citizens, they were just like any other working person. Middle classmen usually worked as shop owners or emploies.

Everyone has heard of Queen Elizabeth. But which Elizabeth are you referring to? The first Elizabeth is the one to really focus on. Queen Elizabeth I reined during the Elizabethan era from 1558 to 1603, the year she died. The government in the British Empire during this time was mainly a personal monarchy with ministries. The queen was considered the best monarch. Personal monarchy means that the queen was the one who chose the ministers and she defined life for her people. The queen was the more than just a figurehead for the British Empire, she was the ruler. The queen was considered a demi-god by her people but even demi-gods had limits. The queen was not above the law and could not pass laws by herself, she had to write a bill and go through her counselors but she could pass royal proclamations and she had final say on all laws. She had a privy council full of members she selected. The parliament was also a big part of British Empire government. The parliament was made up of the House of Lords that consisted of aristocrats and bishops and also the House of Commons. The parliament dealt with financial issues like taxes and they also passed laws. There was government everywhere in the British Empire and they even had a few courts.
Queen Elizabeth I
The British Empire consisted of many diseases and “vaccines”. But truth be told, what people of this time thought were cures for plague and illnesses really weren’t. This time in renaissance history was known for the Black Death or the bubonic plague. People of this time believed that this plague came from China to the British Empire on boats. This disease started when sick and or dead rats were infested fleas. From here, the fleas fed on the bad rat blood. Then the fleas’ traveled to human homes and so did sick rats. The fleas landed on humans and took their clean blood and deposited the bad rat blood, this is how a person got the Black Death. How was this disease spread? Well, there wasn’t a plumbing system or a sewer or very much clean you get the point? Many people also got sick from eating poorly prepared cows and pigs and drinking water from rivers contaminated with animal squander. Unfortunately, the modern medicine we have today wasn’t accessible then. Instead doctors used plants and herbs, tobacco, lily root, arsenic, dried toad, mint, wormwood, balm, rose petals, sage, bay, lavender, and vinegar. It was also thought that if leaches were applied to the body, or id the body was cut open, the bad blood would come out. But since leaches aren’t selective, more than just the bad blood was lost and instead of dying of bad blood, you died from loss of blood.
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In the British Empire all the people were put into a social class and social classes had sub groups to them. There were six different social classes and lots of sub groups in each class. At the top of the pyramid was the Queen. The next class was the gentlemen. The gentlemen consisted of nobility, knights, esquires and clergy. The clergy used to have their own class but then they became a sub group of the gentlemen. Life for the people that were in the gentlemen class was very nice. They were the richest of the people and had the most say in the community. Next in the pyramid were the landholders, lease holders and yeomen. The people in these classes had land that was passed down through generations, but they had to pay taxes to the gentlemen and could be evicted at any time. In the third social class were the husbandmen, townsfolk, yeomen, people, in the middle class and their lives were nothing special but the farmers were important because they grew the food that people ate. Next there were the laborers, cottagers and servants. They had a little bit more difficult way of life. The last social classes were the poor and the unemployed. Those classes usually consisted of children, widows, abandoned wives, elderly people and men who just got back from war. The social pyramid is a very important part of history because a person’s social class tells historians how that person lived their life.
A famer in the Elizabethan Era
Religion in the Elizabethan era was a very part of life. Without religion in the Elizabethan times there would be a lot of chaos from the rulers after the queen. Religion was also important to the queen because it affected her reign and her mother’s marriage. Her mother was also being threatened by Catholics which helped the queen lean towards Protestantism. The queen cut off ties with the Roman Catholic Church through the reformatory. She wanted to pass a bill but the parliament did not want her to govern the church. The Act of Supremacy, the bill that gave the power of the church to the monarch, overpowering the Roman pope. All of the people in the church office were mandated to pledge allegiance to the queen. The Act of uniformity declared that everyone had to go to church every Sunday and every holiday. If you failed to do so then you had to pay a fine. There was a book of common prayer that everyone was expected to read. The act had a vague text to accommodate both Catholics and Protestants. The queen received a lot of criticism over the bill. Some hard core Catholics and Protestants were very distressed about this new bill because it adjusted both parties. The queen was scrutinized and criticized by her subjects because of this bill. While some people were angry, others were confused. Some people converted to being neutral or even became pagans. The queen was considered indifferent in her religion. Most people think that she accepted Catholicism in order to maintain peace across the land. After parliament was dismissed, the queen came up with a list of fundamentals for religion. The fundaments are that, you need to bow when Jesus’s name is spoken, to kneel during prayer, you had to dress moderately, wafer instead of bread was served at communion and the spouse of the preacher was interviewed and approved by a board of directors and two supreme justices. In the end, the queen officially established the religion of Protestantism in the church of England. Religion was a huge part of Elizabethan culture, one that was always changing.
Church From the Elizabethan Era
The area in the British Empire during the Elizabethan era was ruled by Queen Elizabeth I. The queen reigned over all the land and had assistants in other parts of the land, like mayors, to make sure that laws were enforced and that all was well. Around the late 1580’s, people started to migrate from England to the new world. Britain had a greater desire to colonize in the West Indies than North America. This would eventually become the thirteen colonies. The reason people migrated from England to America was mostly because of disagreement of religion. Ireland was the first colony of the island of Great Britain. In 1577 an explorer landed at Frobisher Bay on Baffin Island and claimed it in the queens name. Another British explorer traveled to Newfoundland and took possession of the harbor of St. Johns and all the land within 200 leagues to the north or south. The queen sent her explorers over to America where they claimed Virginia and named it in her honor. Others claimed the Roanoke Colony. The Elizabethan era included all of these places and a few remote places in Europe. Most of the reason people migrated was because there was better land in the new country, more food, less people and they could practice whatever religion they wanted. There were many British explorers going around the world in ships during the Elizabethan Era and they conquered and claimed a lot of land. Without the queen to send them on their quests, the people would have never known about all the wonderful places in the world and would have been a lot more susceptible to attack from other countries, but with all the new land they were very big, so they were not attacked very much
Map of British Empire