Wednesday, December 18, 2019

The Life, Achievements and Atrocities of Oliver Cromwell

From Ancient Origins:
All these grievances eventually led to the outbreak of the First English Civil War in 1642. The issue that directly sparked the war was the disagreement between Charles and Parliament with regards to the handling of the Irish Rebellion, which broke out the previous year. The king and Parliament were not able to set their differences aside and argued over who was to take control of the army that would be sent to fight the rebels. In August 1642, Charles raised his standard at Nottingham and mobilized for the war on his own. This marked the beginning of the English Civil War, which was fought between those loyal to the king (known as the Cavaliers) and those who sided with Parliament (known as the Roundheads).
By the time the First English Civil War broke out, Cromwell was already involved in politics. In 1628, for instance, he was elected as the Member of Parliament (MP) for Huntingdon. Nevertheless, it seems that he did not make a huge impact on national politics, and his tenure as an MP was short, Parliament being suspended in the following year by the king.
In 1640, Cromwell was elected to Parliament once more, this time as MP for Cambridge. As a devout Puritan, Cromwell naturally chose to fight on the Parliamentarian side. Although he had no formal military training prior to the war, Cromwell would distinguish himself in the field of battle over the course of the conflict. Cromwell is regarded to have led one of the earliest military actions of the war, when he led 200 lightly-armed volunteers to stop the king’s men who were carrying away silver plates from the colleges of Cambridge. Cromwell rose through the ranks swiftly. In 1642, he was a captain, in early 1643, a colonel, and by the end of the same year, placed in charge of the cavalry of the Eastern Association army, the second most important of the regional armies. (Read more.)
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