Free Essay on Puritanism in North America

Published: 2019-11-04
Free Essay on Puritanism in North America
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  History United States Religion Church
Pages: 3
Wordcount: 627 words
6 min read

Puritanism in northern America originated from a reformist movement in the Church of England in the 17th century. Its aim was to reform and purify the church by establishing a unifying factor (middle passage) between the ideas of Protestant reformists and the Roman Catholicism. They thought that reformation in religion had not done enough in reforming the structure and the doctrines of the church. Those who advocated for puritanism in the North were famously known as the English pilgrims. Throughout the century Puritanism remained to be the dominating religious movement in the area. During the whole period of colonialism, puritanism had an undeviating influence on both the religious philosophies and cultural patterns in the North.

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The half-way covenant

In 1662, the unregenerate majority were easily converted to become church members in the North especially the Massachusetts by the adoption of the Half-Way Covenant. This covenant which was adopted by the New England Congregationalists made it possible for the children of the baptized but unconverted members of the church to be baptized therefore becoming church members possessing full political rights those who were members of the congregation earlier had become church members after they could report conversion experience. Their children received baptism during infancy and allowed to become full church members since they had been baptized. The establishment of this covenant increased the diminishing minority of the members of the church in the colonies. Additionally, the covenant amplified the church discipline over a good number of people which encouraged more people to seek conversion and be resourceful for the sake of the church. Despite the mass acceptance of this solution, the vocal majority opposed it. The covenant was rendered not valid by most churches in the 18th century the era of Jonathan Edwards and other leaders who argued that church membership should only be given to the believers who are convinced.

American uprising

The 13 colonies that became the United States of America were originally the Great Britain colonies. Before the start of the revolutionary movement, the citizens were beginning to get tired of the British colonialism. Rebellion and dissatisfaction were widespread. The main reason why the colonies started to revolt was the issue of taxation. They debated on the legality of the Englands powers to levy a tax on them for a fact that they had no representation in the legislature. The English settlers who headed the uprising revolutions were also very conscious for claiming their rights as Englishmen who were born free. They also tend to incline themselves with the Commonwealth tradition which emphasized freedom for all. This mindset went in line with the puritanism of the majority in America.

Influence of slavery in the society and economy of American colonies

The southern colonies largely depended on slaves for various reasons ranging from economic, social and even for personal reasons. Those who did not have slaves still depended on them indirectly for the fact that all the slaves were below them and made them feel of a better class in the society. The southern economy depended on slaves in their cotton farms and also for slave trade. The wealthy plantation farmers used the slaves for their own benefit; they were able to pay the slaves very little or at times no pay in exchange for the large produce. Therefore, slavery worked very well for the plantation owners. Slavery has had a lot of impact in developing the economic and the societal choices in the colonies especially between the 17th and the 18th centuries. Despite the faults of slavery in the colonies, it had an inevitable effect on the society. Many black Americans came to the United States as slaves and soon became part of the country, therefore, playing a huge role in making who America is today.

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