A Catalogue of the Severall Sects and Opinions in England and failure to perform duties for the upbringing of children Nations: With a briefe Rehearsall of their false and dangerous Tenents, a propaganda broadsheet denouncing English dissenters from 1647. Puritanism in this sense was founded as an activist movement within the Church of England.
The founders, clergy exiled under Mary I, returned to England shortly after the accession of Elizabeth I of England in 1558. Puritanism played a significant role in English history during the first half of the 17th century. One of the most effective stokers of anti-Catholic feeling was John Pym, whose movement succeeded in taking control of the government of London at the time of the Grand Remonstrance of 1641. Puritans were blocked from changing the established church from within and were severely restricted in England by laws controlling the practice of religion. The Puritans were in alliance with the growing commercial world, with the parliamentary opposition to the royal prerogative, and with the Scottish Presbyterians in the late 1630s with whom they had much in common. Puritans by definition were dissatisfied with the limited extent of the English Reformation and with the Church of England’s tolerance of practices which they associated with the Catholic Church.