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Why did The Rump of 1649- 1653 fail?
Didn't meet the expectations placed upon it by others including Cromwell.
More interested in personal gains than sorting out problems.
Didn't take notice of the Report by the Hales Commission on law reform.
Made little progress in the way of religious, legal or financial reform.
Did not unite the country and pushed many Royalists further away from the government.
The Act of Indemnity and Oblivion had too many exceptions.
Showed utter contempt for the Army, wanted it disbanding without pay and the removal
of Cromwell from power.
A seeming move from the reasons why the war had been fought.
Many could not reconcile themselves with this new government because to do so would
legitimise Prides Purge and the execution of the King.
The Rump was too interested in foreign affairs like its war with the Dutch over commerce
to see the problems in front of it.
Was the Rump always likely to fail?
The Rump had the power it had been searching for but now perhaps they had too much
and they didn't know exactly what to do with it. This was all new and unsurprisingly it was
all too much. They had the tools to create the settlement and try and sort out the
country's problems but they did very well to start squandering it all very quickly. It soon
became clear that personal grudges and desires were going to quickly dominate this
Parliament. It didn't have complete legality as it was now much smaller and would always
be known as being the Parliament which had killed the King. If people were unable to
overcome this obstacle then it was likely they weren't going to gain enough support to
survive which quickly became the case. They underestimated their reliance on the army as
would be the case later. Instead of praising Cromwell for his work in defeating the Scots
at Dunbar and Charles Stuart at Worcester they continued in trying to reduce army size
Why did the army have problems with Parliament?
Parliament was eager for reform particularly religious reform, considering the amount of
non conformists in its ranks. But it saw that Parliament were not really interested in the
same idea and turned its focus towards the army for all the wrong reasons. It wanted to
disband it without paying its arrears , remove Cromwell and sell his home; Hampton Court.
The Rump spent too long procrastinating and not solving the problems; the Presbyterian
settlement promised to the Scots during the war had been left by the side and war
widows pensions were no further in being resolved. The Army's concerns were real.
Perhaps most importantly for the Army was that they were looking for elections for a new
Parliament now that this one was no longer complete, nothing had been done to resolve
Why was Cromwell frustrated with them?
Like the Army Cromwell was annoyed with the level of procrastination from the MP's
especially those who were trying to better their own careers. Cromwell had his own
personal grievances as well; he was an MP he had faith in Parliament and felt the need to
serve it but the lack of reform was concerning him. As too was the fact that his own work
in defeating the Scots, the Irish and Charles Stuart had gone unrecognised and ignored by
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Rump who now seemed intent on punishing him rather than rewarding him. He had a
foot in both camps; the Army and Parliament and tried to play the role of intermediate.
When it came to closing down the Rump Cromwell agonised before deciding that "this
house is to be rent now unfurnished".…read more