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date: 02 June 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This essay begins by examining the establishment of English political systems in the North American colonies in the seventeenth century. It then goes on to look at eighteenth-century developments, and particularly at the conditions that allowed the colonial assemblies to assume increasing importance in colonial government. The final section considers the efforts made by ministers and officials in London to check the power of the assemblies and assert more control from the imperial center. It sheds fresh light on the great constitutional dispute between London and the colonies that formed an important aspect of the American Revolution.

Keywords: Elected assemblies, government, local autonomy, central control, seventeenth century, eighteenth century

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