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   Act of Uniformity
 • Reestablished the Book of Common Prayer, which provided religious instructions while avoiding criticism of Catholicism or the Pope
• Noted the need for subjects to attend church services once a week
  Thirty-Nine Articles
   • Reestablished English as the language of the Church of England
 Many people of the time believed that a woman could not rule a country effectively. In a rousing speech to her troops, Elizabeth I said, “I know I have the body but of a weak and feeble woman; but I have the heart and stomach of a king, and of a king of England, too.”
The Emergence of New Monarchies
Some states emerged during the early modern period that featured greater royal control and centralization and were known as new monarchies. They laid the groundwork for the centralized modern state. These monarchies established bureaucratic methods of tax collection, created strong military forces, implemented systems of justice, and even determined their subjects’ religion. Especially in Spain, France, and England, monarchs controlled nearly every aspect of people’s lives.
Spain For most of the 15th century, the Spanish region of Aragon, home to King Ferdinand, was one of the most important areas of Europe. It was the main maritime power of the western Mediterranean, with an impressive fleet of ships. The Castile region of Spain, home to Queen Isabella, was the other great power on the Iberian Peninsula. The marriage of Ferdinand and Isabella in 1469 began the process of unification and consolidation of power in Spain.
Using national taxes such as the alcabala (a tax on the sale or exchange of property), Ferdinand and Isabella began to centralize power. To limit the power of nobles in Castile, they used coreregidores (magistrates who worked to strengthen royal authority) to carry out justice in the name of the monarch.
The king and queen also used the Inquisition, a Catholic judicial body established to root out heresy, as a tool to consolidate their power. Spain’s Jewish population, one of the largest in Europe and relatively prosperous, was targeted as a threat to the expanding kingdom’s religious unity. Antisemitic (anti-Jewish) persecution forced Chrisian conversion upon many Jews (known as conversos), but some (known as marranos) continued to secretly practice Judaism. Both groups were among the principal targets of the Spanish Inquisition, which routinely used torture as a means of gaining confession. As many as 2,000 individuals were burned at the stake at the height of the Inquisition, and 3,000 to 5,000 were executed over the course of the Inquisition.
Ferdinand’s forces defeated Muslim Granada in 1492, which completed the Reconquista, or the driving of Muslims from Spain. Jews who had not converted to Christianity (estimated at as many as 250,000) were expelled at the same time, creating a uniformly Christian population.

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