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The Restoration Era

What is the English Restoration Era or  Restoration Period?


The period during which the monarchs of three countries came together and also the period of many years after which new political reforms were developed and created is the English Restoration period.

The period covers the long reign of Charles II from 1660-1685 and short reign of his brother James II from 1685 to 1688. The restoration era also covers up the whole period of the later Stuart monarchs from the death of Queen Anne to the succession of the Hanoverian George I in the year 1714.

When did the Restoration Period Begin?

The English Restoration Era began in the year 1660  when King Charles II restored himself to the English Throne.

Restoration of Charles II
Restoration of Charles II

When did the Restoration Period End?

The Restoration era came to an end in the year 1688.

Why the Restoration Period is called Restoration?

The restoration period marks the restoration of monarchy back to England after the Interregnum period. Hence it is called the Restoration Period.

What was the Importance of the Restoration Period?

  • The monarchs of England, Scotland and Whales restored themselves under the ACT of 1707 and united as Great Britain.
  • The global trade and commercial prosperity increased for Britain during the restoration period.
  • The rate of literacy was increased to the middle class and some of the poor also.
  • Along with monarchical restoration, re-opening of theatres also began.
  • The restoration of the Church of England began as the National Church.

What is the Era before the Restoration Era?

The Puritan Era was before the restoration era which was from 1649 to 1660. The restoration Era was followed by the 11 year period of Commonwealth during which the parliament was governed under the direction of Puritan General Oliver Cromwell.

Following are the periods of the Interregnum

  • Commonwealth of England – From 1649 to 1653
  • The Protectorate – From 1653 to 1658
  • Second Protectorate – From 1658 to 1659

What is the Era After the Restoration Era?

The Augustan Age from 1690  to 1744  came after the restoration period. It was the period that began by the death of Alexander Pope. It was regarded as the golden age period as it achieved political power and stability with flourishing art.

What are the Fundamental Ideologies of the Restoration Period?

Following are the ideologies of the restoration period

  • Rise of Neoclassicism
  • Imitation of the Ancient Masters
  • Imitations of French Masters
  • Correctness and Appropriateness
  • Realism and Formalism

    Restoration Period
    Restoration Period

What are the Other Names for the Restoration Period?

The other names of the restoration period are

Age of reason or Enlightenment– During this era, the emphasis was placed on the importance of human reasons and empirical philosophy. Both of them held knowledge about the world through senses and then applying reasons on that.

Reason came out to serve as a guide for men which were unchanging and unique human characteristics. So the restoration era was also called the Age of reason or enlightenment.

Neoclassical Period– The writers of the restoration era placed more emphasis on the original writings that were produced by Roman and Greek literature.

The basic ideologies of the Neoclassical age such as logic, ideals of order, accuracy, decorum, restraint, and correctness enables the practitioners of another art form to reproduce the Greek and Roman structures. Hence the period is also called a Neoclassical period.

Age of Satire – Advancement of knowledge during this era was mainly through literature. A popular literature tool known as satire was developed during the restoration era. It helped writers to educate the common public via literature.

The main aim of satire literature was to find out a problem that society faces and then make efforts to reform it in a comical manner while educating society.

Why the Restoration Period is called the Age of Dryden?

The restoration period from  1660 to 1700  is also called as the Age of Dryden because monarchy restored in England during this period and the main writer of this period was Dryden.

He wrote every form of writing that was important during that time such as occasional verse, tragedy, comedy, odes, heroic plays, satires and translation of classical works.

What Colony was Founded During the Restoration Period?

King Charles II of England rewarded his supporters by making restoration colonies that basically gave them land grants in North America during the restoration period. The grant marked the reopening of the colonies of English after 30 years.

The major two colonies that began during the restoration era are

  • Province of Pennsylvania
  • Province of Carolina

Apart from that other English colonies are

  • From Netherland to New York
  • New Jersey
  • Delaware
  • Georgia

What did Americans Eat During the Restoration Period?

The economic and political affair that took place in the restoration period influenced the evolution of the diet of the Americans. The trends and tradition of the American meal were changed by the local food crop, local food crop, agricultural advancement, and social needs. The rules imposed by the government on brewing, spice trading and bread baking determined the display of meal tables.

Most Americans ate three meals every day that included breakfast, dinner, and supper.

– Breakfast included cornmeal mush or breakfast with either milk or tea.

-Dinner was the largest meal of the day taken during mid-day or mid-afternoon and that consisted of vegetables, one or two meat and some sort of dessert.

-Supper, a small meal was taken in the evening that included cheese and bread, hasty or mushy pudding and some leftover food from dinner. For aristocrats, it is usually a sociable meal that included hot foods like shellfish, meat or oysters occasionally.

As there was no facility of refrigeration and even hunting in winters was difficult for them, Americans preserved their food by smoking, salting, drying, pickling and making some preservatives like marmalades, syrups, and jams. For flavouring, they used herbs like basils, mint, lovage, mint, sage, parsley and dill.

What Ended the Restoration Period?

In the year 1688, James II, son of James was born which alerted the county as they were against the ruling of another catholic. So they made secret plans to bring in the Protestant rulers.

In the same year, William of Orange and his wife arrived England along with the small army. Then began the seizing power with an event called “The Glorious /Bloodless Revolution”. James II flew away to France and hence came an end to the restoration period.

Restoration Period
Restoration Period Stock Photos

What Kinds of Things were Invented During the Restoration Period?

Following are the major inventions of the Restoration Era

  • 1668- A reflecting Telescope by Issac Newton
  • 1670- Champagne by Dom Perignon
  • 1671- A calculating Machine by Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz
  • 1674- Visualizing Bacteria in the microscope by Anton Van Leeuwenhoek
  • 1675- The Pocket Watch by Christian Huygens
  • 1676- Universal Joint by Robert Hooke
  • 1679- Pressure cooker by Denis Papin
  • 1684- Gravity calculations by Newton

What was a Rake in the Restoration Period?

During the restoration period, the word rake was usually used in a glamorous sense. The rake is a wealthy aristocrat who is witty, sexually irresistible and very carefree. The Rake defines the stock character in the novels who are indulged in drinking, singing, gambling and womanizing.

The rake in the restoration era was represented by the Earl of Rochester, Charles II’s Merry gang of Courtiers and The Earl of Dorset. They all combined the intellectual pursuits and the patronage of art with riotous living.

The rake was celebrated in the Restoration Comedy after the reign of Charles II and especially after the Glorious Revolution. This resulted to dive the cultural perspective of the rake into squalor.

Some of the famous rakes included Francis Dashwood, John Wikes, Colonel Charteris, Lord Byron, Cagliostro, Giacomo Casanova, 4th Baron Mohun, and Robert Fielding

When was the Restoration Period started or built-in Italy?

Restoration Period in Italy began in the year 1815 and ended in the year 1835 which led to famous uprising throughout the Peninsula and shaped the Italian Wars of Independence. The Restoration Period of Italy eventually led to the Italian Unification and Kingdom of Italy.

When Napoleon returned to France after his defeat, he revived the support of Murat but they were unable to convince the Italians to fight for Napoleon against the Proclamation of Rimini. Napoleon was beaten and brutally killed.

After his death, the kingdom of Italy fell and then started the restoration period of Italy in the year 1815 with many pre-Napoleonic sovereigns back to the throne.

Who are William and Mary in the Restoration Period?

William was the son of William II of Orange born at Hague in November 1650. Mary was the eldest daughter of King James II born at St. James Palace in April 1622. They both got married on November 1677 in London, despite being the first cousin.

They were among the main reason for the Glorious Revolution or the Bloodless revolution that took place in England from 1688 to 1689. This Glorious revolution ended the restoration period.

Catholic King James II took the throne of England in 1685. He also had a deep relation with France that bothered the English people. The rightful heir of the throne after him was her protestant daughter Mary until his son James Stuart was born in 1688. King James declared his son as Catholic that tensed the supporters of Protestants.

The elevation of Catholicism, relationship with France and conflict with Parliament of King James led to revolt and resulted in the failure of King James II. He then allied with King William of Orange.

Now William and Mary were the king and Queen of Scotland, Ireland, and England together. William died in 1702 after ruling England for 13 years and Mary died in 1694 after reigning only for 5 years. They both died childless.

Who were the Three Prophets of the Restoration Period?

The last three prophets of the restoration era were Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi.

  • Haggai– A man with single ambition who preached poor, frightened and discourage people was Haggai. He was the main prophet who pleaded people in an authoritative and bold manner to rebuild the temple.
  • Zechariah– He was born and brought up in Babylon. He also among the one who preached the people to rebuild temple by encouraging them and showing them their brighter future. He made a great deal to visualize apocalyptic symbolism.
  • Malachi – He was the last prophet who served God under the law of Moses. He had an intense love for God and so Malachi spoke with urgency in the markets and street places to preach people. He used the question-answer method while preaching and helped people restore their faith in God during their difficult times.

What was Culture like Before the Restoration Period Began?

Before the Restoration Period, there was the Puritan Age. The literature was of the prime importance of in the Puritan Age. The main genres of writing in the Puritan Age consisted of historical narrative, religious sermons, poetry, and personal journals.

The writing style of the writers of the Puritan Age was very simple and plain language and sentences. They highly used symbols to depict fictional elements.

Restoration Age
Restoration Age

In the Puritan Age, poets used sonnets influenced by the Elizabethan age and Shakespeare’s work.

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