The elizabethan view of the world
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The Elizabethan View of the World. The Order of Things. Elizabethans viewed the world as a hierarchy “chain of command” Everybody knew their place Society functioned well Based on religion. Hierarchy. Hierarchy. God was at the top Things happened because that’s how God wanted them

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The Order of Things

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The elizabethan view of the world

The Elizabethan View of the World

The Order of Things


Hierarchy

  • Elizabethans viewed the world as a hierarchy

  • “chain of command”

  • Everybody knew their place

  • Society functioned well

  • Based on religion

Hierarchy


Hierarchy1

Hierarchy


The order of things

  • God was at the top

  • Things happened because that’s how God wanted them

  • God’s will was Divine and unfathomable

God


Angels spirits

  • God’s messengers

  • They were the link between Heaven and Earth

  • They could communicate with men

  • The spirit world is often used by Shakespeare

  • Spirits (especially in romances) intervene in the affairs of humans

Angels/Spirits


The king

  • God’s chosen representative on Earth

  • To go against the will of the king was to go against the will of God

  • To disobey the king was to upset the entire social order

  • To murder a king would be to the worst crime

The King


Nobleman

  • Nobleman were above common men

  • Their families were prominent politically

  • Hierarchy of nobles in Scotland:

    • Duke

    • Marquis

    • Thane (Earl)

    • Viscount

    • Baron

    • Knight (not an inherited title)

Nobleman


Townsfolk

  • During the Renaissance, merchants were acquiring new power

  • Acquired a lot of wealth, thus started to have some political influence

  • However, looked down on by nobles

Townsfolk


Country folk

  • Mainly agricultural labourers and peasants

  • Seen as the lowest

Country Folk


Women

  • Women were considered the property of men

  • Their sphere of influence was the home

  • They controlled the family, children, servants

  • Sometimes controlled finances

  • They were not politically active, with the exception of the queens regnant

Women


Animals

  • Animals were put on Earth to serve people

  • God’s gift to assist humanity

Animals


Plants

  • Put on the Earth to feed animals and people

  • No concept of environmental stewardship

  • Humans had complete control over animals and plants

Plants


Witches

  • Witches were perceived as a very real threat

  • Challenged God’s authority, thus the entire social order

  • Led humans into temptation

  • Seen as agents of the devil on Earth

Witches


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