The Peasant’s Revolt was a series of uprisings that took place from May to November 1831 in various parts of England. It is also called The Wat Tyler Rebellion after one of the leaders of the revolt.
The rebellion was caused by taxes. When royal officials insisted on collecting poll taxes in Brentwood on May 30, 1831 the people there, already under a lot of stress from recent events, resisted violently. People in other areas of the country heard of the revolt and soon decided to join it.
The rebels attacked royal officials, broke into offices and destroyed court and tax records.
Their general demands were to reduce taxes, end serfdom, and remove King Richard II’s senior officials.
Wat Tyler, a leader of the rebellion, was able to organize enough men to march on London, which he entered on June 13, 1831. Richard was forced to meet with them and promise to fulfill their demands.
Two days later, Richard left London to meet with Tyler and the rebels in Smithfield. But Richard’s men killed Tyler after he appeared to approach the kings threateningly. London Mayor William Walworth then dispersed the rest of Tyler’s men with his own city militia.
From then on, Richard would be hunting the rebels down.
Richard fielded around 4,000 soldiers to end the uprising and restore order. By November 1831 around 1,500 rebels had been killed and most of their leaders had been arrested and executed.
Richard also took back all the promises he made to Tyler and his rebel army.
Historians believe the fear of more rebellions led authorities to avoid raising more taxes in England, in turn this influenced the result of the Lancastrian War.
Serfdom was a form of slavery. Under serfdom, peasants who occupied a parcel of land had to work for the owner of the land. Aside from farming, serfs could also be put to work like buildings roads and digging in mines.
King Richard II was only 14 years old at the time of the revolt.
The royal forces were mostly deployed abroad or in northern England at the time.
No. The revolt spread to Eastern England in places like Suffolk, Norfolk, and Cambridgeshire, and also in Northern England and Western England in places like Leicester, Lincolnshire, and Somerset.
While no more poll taxes were imposed by the Parliament, there was also no other change introduced to the English tax system.