puritans Essay examples

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Their opponents ridiculed them as "Puritans," but these radical reformers, the English followers of John Calvin, came to embrace that name as an emblem of honor. At the beginning of the seventeenth century, England faced a gathering storm in religious life - the Puritan movement. Before the storm abated, the Puritans had founded the first permanent European settlements in a region that came to be known as New England.
The Puritans believed that God had commanded the reform of both church and society. They condemned drunkenness, gambling, theatergoing, and Sabbath-breaking and denounced popular practices rooted in pagan custom, like the celebration of Christmas. They deplored the "corruptions" of Roman Catholicism that
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By the 1620s, Charles I, James's son and successor, had undertaken even more stringent measures for suppressing dissent. Compounding the religious crisis were mounting political tensions between the king and Parliament and continuing economic problems of recession and unemployment.
Many Puritans concluded that England was slipping toward the Apocalypse. Some, from the ranks of the Congregationalists, became interested in colonization, and in 1629, a group of merchants, landed gentlemen, and lawyers organized the Massachusetts Bay Company. Unlike the Separatists, these Puritans were imbued with a strong sense of mission; they claimed that they were neither separating from the church nor abandoning the cause of reform but, rather, regrouping for another assault on corruption on the other side of the Atlantic.
The Massachusetts Bay Company procured a royal charter confirming its title to most of present-day Massachusetts and New Hampshire and securing its rights to govern the region. Then the stockholders voted to transfer the company itself to Massachusetts Bay and elected as their first governor John Winthrop, a pious, tough-minded Puritan lawyer and landed gentleman. Winthrop sailed from England in 1630, declaring to his fellow passengers that "we shall be as a city on a hill." Once settled, Winthrop and the other stockholders transformed their royal charter for a trading company into the framework of

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