University of Oulu

Nevalainen, Esko (2020) The Quest for a British Reformed and Covenanted Union – An Unrealized Ideal of the Scottish Covenanters’ Collective Identity. Faravid 49, pp. 5-26,

The quest for a British reformed and covenanted union : an unrealized ideal of the Scottish Covenanters’ collective identity

Saved in:
Author: Nevalainen, Esko
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 0.4 MB)
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Pohjois-Suomen historiallinen yhdistys, 2020
Publish Date: 2021-02-18


This article concentrates on the British dimension of the collective identity of the Scottish Covenanting elite, from 1637 to 1647. The main arguments are that the Scottish Covenanters were defending first and foremost the Protestant reformation and liberty they perceived to be under threat. To defend these fundamentals, a reformed and covenanted British union was needed. For the Covenanting identity, the ideas of solidarity and interdependency between Scotland and England were displayed in a quest for unity in religion, but also desire to conserve a lasting peace. These ideas, and particularly their providentially inspired aspirations, interrelated with the international reformation scheme and also tried to communicate a strong sense of British identity. A Protestant reformed Britain was seen as an ideal that penetrated a sense of national identity.

It is obvious that the ideology of the winners dominates the historical view of those time periods, and the Scottish aspirations were, in the end, on the losing side. Yet, the Scottish Covenanters’ ideals stimulated and triggered a process that was a revolutionary and English-driven one, not the British one that the Scottish were striving to have. In this sense the importance of the Scottish unrealized ideal union is essential to study as the English did have to deal with and respond to the Covenanters’ aspirations and challenge.

see all

Series: Faravid. Historian ja arkeologian tutkimuksen aikakauskirja
ISSN: 0356-5629
ISSN-L: 0356-5629
Volume: 49
Pages: 5 - 26
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 615 History and archaeology
Copyright information: © 2020 Esko Nevalainen ja Pohjois-Suomen Historiallinen Yhdistys ry. Tämä työ on lisensoitu Creative Commons Nimeä 4.0 Kansainvälinen Julkinen -lisenssillä.