THOMAS MORE

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          Thomas More began his adult life as a lawyer. During the reign of Henry VII he became a Member of Parliament. He was an active-minded man and kept a keen eye on the events of his time. He was the first great writer on social and political sub­jects in England.

          After Henry VIII came to the throne, More was made the Speaker of the House of Commons. The Tudor monarchy was an absolute monarchy, and Parliament had very little power to resist the king. There was, however, one matter, which Par­liament could determine. That was the right to vote or to refuse to vote for the money. Once when the King wanted money and asked Parliament to vote him 800.000, the members sat silent. Twice the King’s messengers called, and twice they had to leave without an answer. When Parliament was called together again, Thomas More spoke up and urged that the request be refused. After a long discussion, a sum less than half the amount requested by the King was voted, and that sum was to be spread over a period of four years.

          Thomas More was an earnest Catholic, but he was not liked by the priests and the Pope on account of his writings and the ideas he taught. After Henry VIH quarreled with the Pope he gathered around himself all the enemies of the Pope, and so in 1529 More was made Lord Chancellor (the highest judge of the House of Lords). He had not wanted the post because he was as much against the king’s absolute power in England as he was against the Pope. More soon fell a victim to the King’s anger;. He refused to swear that he would obey Henry as the head of the English Church, and was thrown into the Tower. Parlia­ment, to please the King, declared More guilty of treason, and he was beheaded in the Tower in 1535.

          Thomas More wrote in English and in Latin.

 

 

QUESTIONS:

1. What was Thomas More by profession?

2. When did Thomas More become a Member of Parliament?

3. Who was the first great writer on social and political subjects in England?

4. When did Thomas More become the Speaker of the House of Commons?

5. Was Thomas More a peculiar person?

6. Why did not priests and the Pope like Thomas More?

7. When did Thomas More become the highest judge of the House of Lords?

8. Did Thomas More want the position of Lord Chancellor?

9. What happened to Thomas More in 1535?

 

 

VOCABULARY:

reign — правление, царствование, верховная власть

active-minded — прогрессивно-мыслящий

keen — проницательный, острый (ум, взгляд)

throne — трон, престол

the Speaker of the House of Commons — спикер Палаты общин

Tudor monarchy— монархия Тюдоров (английская ко­ролевская династия 15-17 вв.)

absolute monarchy — абсолютная монархия

to resist — сопротивляться, противиться; препятство­вать; противодействовать

to determine — определять, устанавливать; регулировать

to vote — голосовать

to refuse — отвергать, отказывать; отклонять

to urge — подгонять, подстегивать; убеждать, советовать

to spread (past spread, p.p. spread) over — зд. распределить на; откладывать

earnest — убежденный; серьезный

priest — священник (особ, католический)

to quarrel — ссориться; оспаривать (что-л.)

the Pope — римский папа; священник

Lord Chancellor — лорд-канцлер (глава судебного ведом­ства и верховный судья Англии, председатель Палаты лор­дов и одного из отделений Верховного суда)

the House of Lords — Палата лордов (верхняя палата бри­танского парламента)

to fall (past fell, p.p. fallen) a victim — пасть жертвой

anger — гнев

to swear— заставлять поклясться (to — в чем-л.); дать клятву

to obey — послушание

to throw (past threw, p.p. thrown) into — бросать, кидать в

to declare guilty of treason — объявить / признать виновным в измене

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