Scotch-Irish-L ArchivesArchiver > Scotch-Irish > 1998-10 > 0909106048
Subject: Re: Lords of the Congregation
Date: Thu, 22 Oct 1998 18:27:28 PDT
The report sounds as if it was written by a Scotsman
sympathetic to Catholicism, the Stuart succession and
the Auld Alliance or perhaps he was simply an Irish
Jacobite. In Ireland political events which are complex
get simplified into black and white.
What is truthful is that John Knox was the bitter enemy
of Mary and the Stuarts because she was a Catholic and
a rather poor ruler and the leader of his political
When the Catholic church was disbanded in Scotland and
England and Ireland it owned huge amounts of property.
It was siezed, often enriching Henry VIII, one
of his friends, in Scotland the Protestant nobility,
and ditto for Ireland. Even when the Irish lords set
up a government in Kilkenny in the 1640's they made
no plans to restore the property to the church --
they lusted after it as well. In France as in the
countries who left the Church of Rome there was a bitter
struggle over who was in control the king or the Pope
and the king wanted the church wealth. It resulted in the
"Babylonian Exile". This was a period of history in
which church and state were struggling to determine
who was in control. The secular state won in all cases.
Once the English Reformation occured, the Auld Alliance
with France, which remained Catholic, was not so
interesting to the Scottish nobility and the political
situation with England began to change. The Scots needed
to find a new Protestant alliance. It is this
that led to the union of the two crowns. Scotland,
unlike Ireland, was never conquored by England. Parts
of the Highlands were forcibly (and brutally)
suppressed by Scottish kings (acting to consolidate
control of all Scotland against free lance clans whose
notions of law were more akin to American Indians and
"wild Irish" clans than to the Kings of Scotland's)
and then by kings who ruled both England and Scotland
as well as Scottish nobility.
The other side would have equally vile things to say,
in other words. And foul deeds have been committed
in the name of John Knox, the Stuarts, Jesus, the
Pope, etc, as well as wonderful deeds. Everyone says
nasty things about their enemies, especially the ones
that beat you. Even nasty acts are made to look worse.
Anyone who wasn't a fanatic must have felt horror
at the destruction of culture and tradition that occured
in the Reformation.
We look with horror at the Chinese "cultural revolution"
without realizing our own ancestors have done the same.