Antonia Fraser

Language: English

Pages: 576

ISBN: 0802137660

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

In Cromwell, award-winning biographer Antonia Fraser tells of one of England's most celebrated and controversial figures, often misunderstood and demonized as a puritanical zealot. Oliver Cromwell rose from humble beginnings to spearhead the rebellion against King Charles I, who was beheaded in 1649, and led his soldiers into the last battle against the Royalists and King Charles II at Worcester, ending the civil war in 1651. Fraser shows how England's prestige and prosperity grew under Cromwell, reversing the decline it had suffered since Queen Elizabeth I's death.

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meantime Parliament bore the full brunt of the wrath of the returning Army leaders: all ordinances passed in the Speaker’s absence by the Presbyterian minority were to be repealed, in which work the Generals were assisted not only by the committed Independents, but by the many MPs who belonged more to the “middle group”, as it has been termed. This shifting but important body of MPs, whatever their views on military rule, were as one with the Army leaders in believing there should be no

been. Like Bridget, the subject of his marriage was touched upon, although introduced with slightly more tact in deference to Richard’s masculinity: “You will think (perhaps) I need not advise you to love your wife. The Lord teach you how to do it, or else it will be done ill-favouredly. Though marriage be no instituted Sacrament, yet here the undefiled bed is, and love, this union aptly resembles Christ and His Church. If you can truly love your wife, what [love] doth Christ bear to His Church

of John More, a London apprentice, brought the total of Cromwell’s titles to a sinister six hundred and sixty-six - the number of the Beast.4 Since any denunciation of the Government constituted treason, inevitably such burning-tongued declaimers ended up in prison. But once incarcerated, Oliver refused to have them tried. The reason was simple. A trial would not fail to result in the imposition of the heavy treason penalties. Imprisonment without trial, for all its seeming tyranny, saved them

humanity. It seemed from the tone of these appeals that as in some scene of a melancholy parable the lame, the halt and the blind were being cast out into highways and by-ways - and so indeed they were, except that they had to face in addition to their Biblical fate, the mournful rigours of an Irish winter. For as the greedy new owners started to arrive at the properties, it was hardly likely that they would listen sympathetically to pleas of injustice which, if heard, would deny them the

Lord [for] the issue of things, and a close dependence upon him for light and guidance in things of doubtfulness is most safe”.30 It was advice which Oliver Cromwell, finally offered the kingship on 31 March by the Speaker of the House of Commons at the Banqueting House in Whitehall, seemed inclined to take. The Humble Petition and Advice, as it had now become, was presented by the Speaker in a long speech whose object was “to commend the title and office of a King in this nation; as that a King

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