The Forest of Dean.

Bygone Days

   Bygone Days.

Forest of Dean History
Background to the Civil War.

The other major factor was to do with money. For some time English monarchs had had very expensive tastes. As exampled by the "Great Contract" in James I rule whereby government was to grant a one-off lump sum of £600,000 to pay off the the king's debts plus an annual grant to him of £200,000. By how much this "Bailing-Out" failed can be deduced by the fact that on the death of James I in 1625 his son, who became Charles I, inherited along with the throne a debt from his father of £750,000. No wonder he was always 'strapped for cash.'
There were only a half-dozen or so options open to Royalty to raise that sort of sum and, at the same time, the monies to keep court and kingdom functioning:
1. Increase Taxation (for this to work the economy had to be basically healthy).
2. Further exploit existing resources (such as Forestry).
3. Sell-off or lease-out resources (i.e., the rights to the Forest of Dean).
4. Borrow (from rich merchants, landowners, Jews & foreigners).
5. Acquire land and resources peacably from someone else (by marriage or treaty).
6. Invade another country and get wealth that way (raise an army).
Most, if not all, of these options needed the co-operation or consent of Parliament - which was not forthcoming.

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