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Peasant's Revolt (1381).

Led by Wat Tyler and a priest named John Ball, the revolt spread from Kent to London. The immediate cause of the rebellion was the heavy and unequal burden of poll taxes and the cruel conduct of the tax collectors. Also, the crowds were somewhat swayed by the equalitarian moral teachings of poor clergymen and perhaps also by the teaching and radical interpretation of the Gospels by John Wycliff, a radical theologian of Oxford. Records of the period indicate that quotations from Langland's The Vision of Piers Plowman were used in the revolution. With the help of urban rebels, the crowds ransacked London, murdering the archbishop of Sudbury and the treasurer. Young Richard II and the mayor of London negotiated with the rebels, granting their demands. Walford killed Wat Tyler while defending Richard. Richard calmed the rebels, who then dispersed peacefully.

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Author:McCoy, Kathleen; Harland, Judith A.V.
Publication:English Literature to 1785
Article Type:Reference Source
Date:Jan 1, 1992
Previous Article:Caxton, William (c. 1422-1491).
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