M. M. Kovalevskyi as a Historian of English Political Thought of the Seventeenth Century Cover Image

М. М. Ковалевський Як Історик Політичної Думки Англії XVII Ст.
M. M. Kovalevskyi as a Historian of English Political Thought of the Seventeenth Century

Author(s): Iryna V. Nemchenko
Subject(s): Epistemology, Political Philosophy, Political Theory, Early Modern Philosophy
Published by: Видавництво «Одеський національний університет І. І. Мечникова»
Keywords: M. M. Kovalevskyi; English political thought of the 17th century; «mixed monarchy»; constitutionalism; democracy; English revolution; Independents; Levellers;

Summary/Abstract: The article is devoted to the contribution of M. M. Kovalevskyi in the study of English political thought of the 17th century. Being one of the first European scholars who turned to this issue, M. M. Kovalevskyi built his three-volume work «From the direct people’s power to the representative one and from the patriarchal monarchy to parliamentarism» (1906) on a solid source base of political treatises, pamphlet literature, program documents of the political «parties» of the English Revolution, etc. In his work, M. M. Kovalevskyi turns both to political theory, its long-term traditions and transformations in the 17th century, and to the «lower» layer of English political thought, which was closely connected with the realities of social confrontation. The article traces one of the most important lines of M. M. Kovalevskyi’s studies: a stable presence of the concept of a «mixed monarchy», the reign of the king in parliament, in English political thought of the 17th century. Linking the origins of this concept with the political ideas of John Fortescue and with the historical features of English state, M. M. Kovalevskyi shows that not only «constitutionalists» like Henry Parker, John Pym and William Prinn were adherents of this idea, but also the upholders of the «party» of Independents, those political writers who supported the English Republic – John Milton, M. Nedham, Henry Hammond, James Harrington and others. The disposition to the «mixed» government M. M. Kovalevskyi discovers both in the speeches of Cromwell during the Protectorate, and in the works of political thinkers of Restoration period, primarily Algernon Sidney. At the same time, M. M. Kovalevskyi emphasizes that the ideal of mixed government does not necessarily provide democracy. In his opinion, ideas of democracy in the middle of the 17th century were put forward only by the «party» of Levellers, who abandoned the reign of king in parliament.

  • Issue Year: 2017
  • Issue No: 28
  • Page Range: 396-409
  • Page Count: 14
  • Language: Ukrainian