Was Oliver Cromwell A Hero Or A Villain Essay

Was Oliver Cromwell A Hero Or A Villain Essay-66
Oliver Cromwell famously instructed his portrait painter Sir Peter Lely not to flatter him, but rather to note “all these roughnesses, pimples, warts and everything as you see me.” It is the sort of no-nonsense remark you might expect from the Puritan ‘Roundhead’ who ruled as Lord Protector from 1653 to 1658, after he had helped to crush the ‘dashing Cavaliers’ of King Charles I.History has taken Cromwell at his word ever since, scrutinising his deeds and motives, ‘warts and all’, with an unforgiving gaze. Decried on the one hand as an ambitious schemer and hypocrite corrupted by power, Cromwell has been acclaimed on the other as a political visionary inspired by God to reform government, law and society.

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From April 1616 he studied at Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge, leaving suddenly after a year due to the death of his father.

Charles I’s death warrant was signed by 59 of his judges, with Cromwell the third to inscribe his name.

On 30 January 1649 the King stepped from a window of London’s Banqueting House onto the scaffold and was beheaded before an incredulous crowd.

Monarchy was abolished along with the House of Lords, and a Commonwealth was established.

But unfortunately the so-called Rump Parliament dithered, failing to press ahead with radical social and constitutional reform, all the while locked in mutual hatred with the Army.


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