A Threshold of Genocide: Microgenocide in Mary Tudor’s Revenge on Protestant England and Catherine de Medici’s Massacre of the Huguenots

By Niki Incorvia.

Published by The International Journal of Religion and Spirituality in Society

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Genocidal events, which inflict major loss on a specific population, likely have roots in smaller local conflicts. These seeds of greater devastation can be called micro-genocides, threshold processes that prime the cycles of greater devastation. These local, limited conflicts can predict and, in some cases, seem to legitimize, larger movements of oppression and slaughter that follow. The precedent for Mary Tudor’s reign of terror could arguably be established by her father, Henry VIII, who put to death approximately two hundred individuals from Northern England in an uprising against the dissolution of religious houses and monasteries ordered by his secretary and right hand man, Thomas Cromwell. The uprising was not against the king himself; but regardless Henry had them executed for rebelling and questioning his authority as supreme ruler (Scully 2004). Mary Tudor witnessed this act of aggression by her father as a method of power and control over the people of his realm and implemented similar sanctions against those who did not agree nor conform to her religious beliefs and values. The following is a contextual analysis of those events in the sixteenth century that marked the split between Catholics and Protestants in both England and France. This article will include an analysis of secondary sources on the topic as well as contributions from fellow historians.

Keywords: Genocide, Religion, Tudors, Catherine de’ Medici, France, England

The International Journal of Religion and Spirituality in Society, Volume 5, Issue 3, September 2015, pp.53-60. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 275.853KB).

Dr. Niki Incorvia

Ph.D. Researcher, Department of Conflict Analysis and Resolution, specialization: Historical Analysis, Nova Southeastern University, Astoria, NY, USA