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Opposition to the Protectorate
First off there was minimal opposition
There was a group of republicans who had opposed Cromwell's removal of the Rump
parliament; they saw the protectorate as a drift towards kingship. The offer of the
crown to Cromwell seemed to confirm this fear. Haseling was the leader of this group.
Originally these republicans were concerned with the instrument because...
1) The authority of the protector
2) The control of the army
3) The power of the protector and council to introduce ordinances
There were very few royalist uprisings, the threat of royalists during the protectorate
was very minimal because...
1) No figurehead for the uprising
2) No clear guidance or leadership from Charles II for the royalists prepared to act.
3) Charles II wasn't very well known in England and what was known was that he
was a womanizer and heavily in debt.
4) Royal court in exile was divided. On one had we had moderated like Hyde and on
the other we had HenriettaMaria who was a radical and had aggressive views
(probably still upset about her dear sweet hubby dying)
There was a group of royalists in opposition to the Protectorate founded in 1653 called
the sealed knot and they wanted to coordinate royalist opposition in England, but they
were cautious in their approach because they wanted to hold onto their estates and
there had already been failed assassination attempts on Cromwell's life.
Penruddock uprising in 1655
Led by royalist who believed it would spark off a more wide resistance, Penruddock led
200400 troops and seized Salisbury , he found there was very support and fled to
Devon but was arrested, tried and executed. This demonstrated that very few royalists
would risk their lives for te royalist cause.
Thurloe (secretary of state for Cromwell) was in charge of running the spy network and
he had a constant stream of reports from agents such as 007 who would inform him
about plots to kill the lord protector.
Plot led by Edward Sexby who was an exleveller and former army officer, he developed
links with the royalists out of practicalism, he recruited a man called Sindercombe to
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Cromwell. Plan to blow up Cromwell when he arrived at Whitehall for the
opening of the 2nd parliament. Only ever a plot because a snitch informed Thurloe, Sexby
fled to Holland and believed Cromwell was a tyrant.
3 colonel petition in 1654 denounced the protectorate, arguing the protectorate has too
much power and Cromwell might use the army to get rid of parliament, petition was
seized and colonels arrested and dismissed. 5th monarchists within the army also
provided opposition.…read more