Rage of Party

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The Rage of Party is the name often given to the tumultuous period in English politics directly after the Glorious Revolution of 1688 until c. 1715. This period was characterized by political instability brought about by increased partisanship within Parliament and frequent elections. Eleven Parliaments met in this period, partly as a result of the Triennial Act, which meant a general election had to be held every three years. In fact, on average an election was held every two and a half years.[1]

Political Divisions[edit]

There were two main axes of political conflict during this period. The Whigs, who supported the Glorious Revolution and the Protestant succession, opposed the Tories, who, although supporting the new monarchs in a de facto sense, were disturbed by the disruption to the divine succession which the Glorious Revolution entailed. Outside of this division was the Court/Country axis. Court politicians were either in government or sought to be, and were thus supportive of centralized power and the dominance of Parliament by the executive. Country politicians distrusted centralized power and were keen to secure the independence of Parliament.[2]


  1. ^ The Rage of Parliaments: The House of Commons, 1690 –1715, The Historical Journal, 48, 2 (2005), pp. 567–587, http://journals.cambridge.org/action/displayFulltext?type=1&fid=307221&jid=HIS&volumeId=48&issueId=02&aid=307220
  2. ^ O'Gorman, Frank, The Long Eighteenth Century, British Political and Social History, 1689–1832, pp. 42–44'