1646-7: The Search for a Settlement - Timeline (1)
- July - The Newcastle Propositions are presented to Charles I.
- October - Parliament passes the ordinance abolishing episcopacy.
1646-7: The Search for a Settlement - Timeline (2)
- 30 January - The Scots hand over Charles to Parliament.
- 25 May - Parliament orders the army to disband.
- 4 June - The King is kidnapped by the army.
- 14 June - The Declaration of the Army is issued.
- 23 July - The Heads of the Proposals are presented to Charles.
- 26 July - Parliament is invaded by a crowd in support of Presbyterian leaders.
- 6 August - The army occupies London.
- 28 October - The Agreement of the People is issued.
- 28 October-5 November - The Putney Debates on the Agreement of the People are held.
- 11 November - Charles I escapes from Hampton Court to the Isle of Wight.
- 15 November - Cromwell puts down a mutiny at Corkbrush Field.
- 24 December - Parliament presents the Four Bills to Charles I.
- 26 December - Charles I concludes the Engagement with the Scots.
1646-7: The Search for a Settlement
There were 5 phases traceable in the period leading up to Charles' death:
- May 1646 - March 1647: Attempts at a political settlement between King and Parliament.
- April - August 1647: Conflict between Parliament and the army.
- August - Decemeber 1647: Conflict within the army.
- January - August 1648: Rebellion and war (the Second Civil War).
- September 1648 - January 1649: The English Revolution (the process of trial and the execution of the King).
May 1646 - March 1647: Settlement Attempts - King
- The Newcastle Propostions (July 1646).
Charles took his time, still hoping to achieve success in the peace, as there were lots of divisions within his enemy:
- Divisons within opposition:
- Parliament and the Scots
- Parliament and the New Model Army
- Scots and the New Model Army
- Divisons within Parliament:
- Presbyterian group - Peace party
- Independent group - War part
- Divisons with the Scots:
- Anti-Cofenant group
- Royalist Scots
The Newcastle Propositions: July 1646
- Just after the Civil War it was still unthinkable to have a peace settlement without involving the King. This resulted in the Newcastle Propositions.
- The Political Presbyterians drew up these terms (the Peace Party).
- They were a lot more detailed than the Nineteen Propositions and included the following:
- The Triennial Act was to be maintained
- Parliament was to nominate 13 of the King's ministers
- Parliament was to control the militia for 20 years
- Episcopacy was to be abolished + a Presbyterian Church established for 3 years (this to be the state religion)
- 58 Royalists to be excluded from a general pardon
- Charles did not respond quickly. His first response to the Propositions was that he wanted more time to consider such an important + complicated issue.
- Charles thought that he could still achieve success in the peace, by allowing his enemies to become divided.
- This is not an unreasonable expectation in the years 1646-7 as Parliament's alliances and their relationship with the army seemed to be breaking down.
What Were the Divisions Within the King's Oppositi
Three main divisions. Parliament was arguing with the Scots. Relations between the New Model Army and Parliament were poor. Relations between the New Model Army and the Scots were also in trouble. There were also divisions within the Scots + within Parliament.
Parliament and the Scots:
- Problems emerged as early as 1646.
- The main arguments were over who would guard the King + the religion of England.
- The religious argument was more serious.
- The Solemn League and Covenant (wartime alliance between Parliament & the Scots) meant that the Scots expected Parliament to establish a Presbyterian Church in England.
- Parliament realised that this would alienate many English people.
- They established an unhappy compromise instead that seemed to please no one.
What Were the Divisions Within the King's Oppositi
Parliament and the New Model Army:
- There were two main reasons why these two groups argued.
- First - the Soldiers, thinking that they had played a big part in defeating Charles, thought that they would have a say in the peace settlement. They didn't expect the Political Presbyterians to do this without consulting them.
- Second - the Army was worried about the future. Parliament no longer needed a large army + many soldiers would need to be paid off. All soldiers had back pay owing to them.
- These arguments exploded in 1647.
What Were the Divisions Within the King's Oppositi
The Scots and the New Model Army:
- Most of the differences between these two were due to religion.
- Many of the soldiers in the New Model Army thought that they were fighting for a form of religious freedom, then termed 'liberty to tender consciences'.
- The national Presbyterian Church that the Scots wanted would mean religious uniformity, or lack of religious tolerance.
- Cromwell apparently said that he would draw his sword against the Scots as readily as anyone in the King's army.
Divisions Within the Scots
The Scots themselves were split increasingly:
- Those that still supported the Covenant
- Growing anti-Covenant group (neither Covenanters or Royalists)
- Royalist Scots
These would have an important impact on England in 1648.
Divisions Within Parliament
- Like in the Civil War, there existed a Presbyterian (Peace party) group and an Independent group (War party).
- In 1646 the Presbyterians were the largest group in Parliament. They wanted to make a settlement with Charles as soon as possible.
- Charles' prevarication meant that their position became weaker. By-elections (then known as recruiter elections - when MPs died and needed replacing) in 1646-7 saw several Independents become MPs.
- This looked to be reversed when the Scots agreed to leave England in January 1647 for a payment of £400 000 (because they did not agree with Parliament).
- This removed one unsettling force. It also meant that Charles was handed to Parliament.
- He was brought to Holdenby House in Northamptonshire, near Northampton.
- By spring of 1647 the Presbyterians felt strong enough to deal with the New Model Army. This was to significantly alter the whole situation.
April - August 1647: Conflict Between Parliament +
Parliament's Plans for the New Model Army: These plans led to a crisis. They were as follows:
- 12 400 men sent to Ireland (to defeat Irish Rebellion)
- 6400 to stay in England
- Other soldiers dismissed
There was no mention of the following points that were important to the soldiers of the New Model Army:
- Arrears of pay
- Indemnity against prosecution for actions undertaken while in military service
April - August 1647: Conflict Between Parliament +
- First the officers, then the soldiers, began to complain.
- Parliament's response was to offer 8 weeks' arrears of pay.
- In reality, the infantry were owed 18 weeks' pay, the cavalry 43 weeks', so the offer of 8 weeks' was not satisfactory.
- The offer of 8 weeks' pay was given at the same time as an order for the New Model Army to disband.
- 29 May 1647 - the Army refused to disband. Events then moved very quickly.
- A few days later a force of 500 soldiers (who were angry with Parliament) led by Cornet Joyce rode to Holdenby House and took control of Charles I away from the parliamentary guard. Charles was taken to the army's headquarters at Newmarket.
- The army set up its own General Council of Officers to try and negotiate with the King.
- Parliament looked to London to find forces to challenge what had become a kind of mutiny.
- Meanwhile, the army marched on London (to prevent Parliament finding forces).
April - August 1647: Conflict Between Parliament +
- 14 June 1647 - General Council of the Army issued a Declaration of the Army, in which it was not a 'mere mercenary army'. It called for the Long Parliament to be purged - those who they disapproved of to be removed from Parliament.
- The Army demanded the impeachment of 11 leading Presbyterians (including Denzil Holles, one of the original leaders of Parliament before the Civil War).
- A Civil War among the victors did not happen as the 11 Presbyterians fled London.
- They returned after 26 July 1647 as demonstrators loyal to the Presbyterians invaded Parliament.
- With tension mounting, 60 leading Independent MPs took refuge with the army.
- 10 days later, on 6 August 1647, the army occupied London and reinstated the Independent MPs.
August-December 1647: Conflict Within the Army (1)
Divisions - These had arisen by late summer in 1647:
The Heads of the Proposals: Submitted by grandees in July 1647 to Charles
The Agreement of the People: Proposals drawn up by the Levellers in October 1647.
The Putney Debates: 28 October - 5 November 1647.
What Were the Divisions Within the Army?
- Generals of the Army. 'Grandees' was a scornful term that was used by the Levellers & Agitators when referring to senior army officers (e.g. Cromwell, Fairfax).
- Representatives of the rank-and-file soldiers. They were elected from each regiment in the army in order to present their demands through the officers to Parliament.
- They were not rebels or violent, like the term suggests now.
- They represented ordinary soldiers (spoke on their behalf), although some did support the radical ideas of groups like the Levellers.
Ordinary soldiers wanted different things to the Generals.
The Heads of the Proposals: July 1647
- Proposals that the grandees submitted in July 1647 to Charles I after he became their prisoner.
- This proposal became known as the Heads of the Proposals. Its main aims were:
- Triennial Act to be repealed in favour of biennial (every two years) parliaments.
- Parliament to nominate ministers for 10 years.
- Parliament to control the militia for 10 years.
- Bishops to remain but with limited power. Religious tolerance established.
- 7 Royalists to be excluded from general pardon.
- The Heads of the Proposals were more favourable to the King. He should have approved them, but he didn't because of his stubborn character + ideology.
- Charles also believed that Parliament was divided enough to defeat.
The Agreement of the People: October 1647
- In October 1647 the Levellers, with whom the Agitators were linked, came up with their own set of proposals called the Agreement of the People.
- This was much more radical compared with the other two documents. Below are some of its terms:
- Parliament was sovereign (complete control) in all but 5 areas.
- These included religious matters and the ability to exempt individuals from the law of the land.
- The people were to be sovereign in these cases (ordinary people have the power).
- The Agreement of the People, without explicitly saying so, was arguing for a democratic republic.
- This caused further division within the Army as grandees were never going to agree to this.
- It was discussed by the General Council of Officers in a series of debates held at Putney between 28 October and 5 November 1647. They are known now as the 'Putney Debates'.
The Putney Debates: 28 October - 5 November 1647
- The most heated argument was about suffrage - who would be entitled to vote.
- The Levellers argued for universal male suffrage - every man should have the right to vote + have a say in government.
- The grandees, represented by Henry Ireton (a son-in-law of Cromwell) argued that only those with 'a permanent fixed interest in the kingdom' should be allowed to vote - in other words, only those owning property (excludes a lot of the poor).
- A few weeks later, on 15 November, there was an army rendezvous at Corkbush Field, near Ware in Hertfordshire.
- Some of the soldiers wore in their hats copies of the Agreement of the People to which they added the slogan 'England's Freedom, Soldiers' Rights'. 'Rights' was a significant turning point - wanting a political say.
- Two regiments should not have been there (counted as mutiny). Oliver Cromwell acted quickly. He had the ringleaders arrested + one of them shot.
- Army unity was restored with this quick action - it scared people and it was a very public display of repression.
- For Cromwell, unity of the Army was essential.
Charles I Escapes: 11 November 1647
- Charles reached the Isle of Wight where he became the guest of the governor of the Carisbrooke Castle.
- No one knows why he did this - he left a note saying he feared for his life but it is unknown whether this is the whole truth.
- Whilst on the Isle of Wight Charles was approached by two groups with new peace proposals - Parliament and the Scots.
- Parliament proposed the Four Bills. They would give Parliament control of the militia for 20 years, annul all of the King's proclamations against Parliament, cancel peerages granted since the start of the Civil War + grant Parliament the right to adjourn to whichever place in England they chose.
- They also included elements of the Newcastle Propositions. Charles quickly rejected these proposals.
- 26 December - Charles signed the Engagement with the Scots.
- He agreed to introduce Presbyterianism into England for 3 years in return for the military support of the anti-Covenanting Scots (King trying to raise an army against Parliament).
- A week later Parliament passed the Vote of No Addresses forbidding further negotiations with Parliament.
Why Was There No Negotiated Settlement From 1646 t
- 1) The King's conscience would not allow him to accept the terms. he thought he had made enough concessions in 1641 + thought back constantly to Strafford's death. He stuck to the preservation of his friends, crown & Church. Some of his letters suggest he was already resolved to be a martyr.
- 2) In England there was a growing resentment at what as seen to be Parliament's tyranny. Resentment was caused especially by the continued levy of the excise + assessment taxes and the heavy-handed actions of the county committees. They had been set up by both sides to deal with the peace - what to do with military matters, taxation + sequestration (taking land off those who supported the losing side - Royalists were treated very badly).
- 3) The winning coalition was fragile and there was little agreement about what they wanted from the peace. It was hard to get terms that all agreed on, making negotiation very difficult.
Aims and Actions of the Different Groups (1)
- Aim: Military victory, control of the army.
- Action: Occupy London (6 August 1647), Cromwell puts down mutiny at Corkbrush Field (15 November 1647).
- Aim: Triennial Act, abolish bishops, Presbyterianism, get rid of the army - ordered it to disband (25 May 1646), peace, political settlement with Charles.
- Action: Newcastle Propositions (July 1646), tried to disband army, mob in support of Presbyterians invaded Parliament (26 July 1646), Four Bills (24 December 1647).
- Aim: Peace, with him in charge.
- Action: Rejecting negotiations, delaying.
Aims and Actions of the Different Groups (2)
- The Army officers:
- Aim: Have a say in the peace settlement, clear up the future of their force, purge the Long Parliament + impeach 11 leading Presbyterians, establish religious tolerance, control of their soldiers.
- Action: Heads of the Proposals (+ abducting Charles), Declaration of the Army, occupying London (6 August 1647) + reinstating Independents, refusal to disband (29 May 1647), Putney Debates (28 October - 5 November 1647).
- The rank and file:
- Aim: Clear up arrears of pay, indemnity against prosecution, religious freedom.
- Action: Refused to disband (29 May 1647), army rendezvous at Corkbush Field (15 November 1647).
Aims and Actions of the Different Groups (3)
- Aim: Universal male suffrage, more power to the people, democratic republic.
- Action: Agreement of the People (October 1647), army rendezvous at Corkbush Field (15 November 1647).
- Aim: Presbyterian Church in England
- Action: Left England for £400 000 (January 1647), Engagement with the Scots (26 December 1647).
What Factors Affected the Outcome of the First Civ
- Resources + territory
- Building armies (recruitment)
- Making alliances
- Political struggles (internal divisions)
- Military strength (winning battles)
- Propaganda and ideology
Resources and Territory (1)
- The King had lost London, but everything else was up for graps.
- Neither side had an army to grab it - it was left to local communities to decide whether to declare their allegiance, and who to.
- The King controlled areas such as the North (apart from Newcastle), York, Wales, Oxford and the very south-west.
- Parliament controlled London, Norwich, the East, Newcastle, Hull, Bristol, Gloucester, Tenby, Plymouth, Exeter.
Resources and Territory (2)
- Parliament controlled some of the main population centres, such as London, Norwich and Bristol. Therefore it had greater manpower than the King.
- For producing cannon and other weapons.
- Both sides had access to iron works.
Arms, armour and gunpowder:
- Militias had their own supplies.
- Two major stores of weapons - Hull and London, both under Parliament's control.
- For uniforms; Parliament had the best access to cloth supplies.
Resources and Territory (3)
- The larger the population under political control, the greater the income.
- This meant that Parliament had a much larger tax base, so could get more money.
- For making bullets.
- Both sides had even access to this.
- To supply saddles, shoes, leather buff coats, etc.
- Both sides had access to leather.
- Parliament had control of this - prevented the enemy importing weapons + to support armies. Hindered Irish troops travelling to help the King.
Resources and Territory (4)
- Parliament had much greater resources than the King - it was important for the King to win the war quickly. The longer it lasted, the more Parliament's greater resources would come into play.
Building Armies (Recruitment)
- Both sides during the Civil War faced the same problem - how to build an efficient army out of chaos.
- Parliament + the KIng had very different conceptions of how the country should be organised for war.
- Charles - Turned instinctively to tradition + personal contacts, building his war effort around local aristocrats with regional power.
- Parliament - More impersonal + arbitrary, using its legislative powers to create a tax-collecting bureaucracy supporting, eventually, a professional standing army.
Building Armies - The Royalists (1)
- The King's war effort began with the Commissions of Array issued from York in June 1642, ordering wealthy local gentlemen to raise their counties' forces for the King.
- System the Stuarts had inherited from the Tudors, a joining together of local defence forces.
- From the middle of 1642 loyal subjects were fortifying their castles & manor houses + trying to seize control of disputed towns.
- 1643 - More systematic organisation emerged. County committees of the wealthier gentry were formed to raise money + recruit soldiers.
- Their task was to liaise with the commanders of local garrisons so their needs could be supplied out of local taxation.
- They could also confiscate the estates of local Parliamentarians, though the King was reluctant to seize personal property.
- At this stage the Royalist war effort was still based on the county + its traditional office-holders.
- During 1643 King grouped counties into military districts + placed them under the command of regional aristocratic governors (grandees).
Building Armies - The Royalists (2)
- Country was divided into 6 military zones, each commanded by a royalist grandee. This could only be done in those parts of the kingdom that were not under firm Parliamentary control.
- At the beginning of the war, the business of raising money + troops was in the hands of local gentry & wealthy lords such as the Earl of Newcastle, who raised an equipped a regiment of infantry - 'the Whitecoats' out of his own pocket.
- Summer 1642 - Loans and gifts poured in to the King's treasury as gentlemen pledged their loyalty.
- By 1643 county committees began to create a more orderly system for collecting taxes.
- King relied upon local men to raise local taxes - several disadvantages to this. They expected local money to be spent on local defence; proper accounting for the money raised was almost unheard of; and, being local men, they were prepared to let their friends + neighbours off.
- Problems which had undermined Charles' military system throughout his reign therefore re-surfaced, made worse by the fact that Parliament disputed his control of these localities.
Building Armies - The Royalists (3)
- Late in the war the Royalists learned that a more harsh, less traditional system was needed.
- King's army began pressing men into service to replace losses due to desertion, disease + casualties of war.
- 1644 - Oxford Parliament passed a bill legalising conscription, along with an excise tax on basic commodities.
- By this time Parliament had been collecting its own excise for a whole year.
- Creating a national Royalist war effort was almost impossible.
- 1643 - Looked like the King had a national strategy for a '3-pronged attack' on London, but no hard evidence for this. Probably simply the result of the geographical isolation of the King's armies + temporary success gained in the 3 areas by the Royalists' methods.
- Royalists should have enjoyed an immediate advantage of a clear command structure.
- Instead Charles' armies were riddled with personal rivalries, confused command structures + wounded pride.
Building Armies - The Royalists (4)
- Evening before Battle of Edgehill, King gave Rupert independent command of the cavalry, out of the hands of its Lord General, Lindsey. Lindsey was so upset that he quit his post + fought with the infantry.
- King learned by hard experience that his original notion of fighting the war by traditional means was fatally flawed.
- Gradually a more ruthless system emerged, in which strangers squeezed taxes from the counties with brutal objectivity.
- By this time Parliament was ahead of the game.
Building Armies - The Parliamentarians (1)
- War effort began with Militia Ordinance in March 1642. In the race to gain control of the county militias, Parliament was first.
- July 1642 - Parliament appointed a Committee of Safety to oversee conduct of the war + voted to raise an army.
- August - Officers were sent from London to co-ordinate county defences, and soon county committees were formed. Initially, therefore, it appeared that Parliament was following the same traditional path as the King.
- Parliament quickly introduced innovations - 1643 it passed a series of ordinances aimed mainly at securing funding as the basis for future victory, assuming that it could survive long enough for the ordinances to take effect.
- Alongside this fiscal revolution was a bureaucratic one: county committees were authorised to enforce these ordinances, reporting to central committees, in London.
- These measures laid the foundations for the 'military-fiscal state', a government raising taxes based more closely on the actual wealth of individuals, supported by an administrative system that did not depend on the goodwill of local men.
Building Armies - The Parliamentarians (2)
Parliamentary Ordinances, 1643:
- February 1643: Assessment Ordinance - Weekly assessments imposing a specific sum of tax from each county. Unlike the old parliamentary subsidy, the assessments were based on the Ship Money returns of the 1630s, and therefore reflected more accurately the country's actual wealth.
- March 1643: Sequestration Ordinance - Confiscated the property of Royalists. Their estates were managed by local commissioners, who used the profits to support Parliament's war efforts.
- May 1643: Compulsory Loans Ordinance - Everyone worth £10 a year from land or £100 a year in goods to lend 1/5 of the revenue of their estate or half of their value in other forms of property to Parliament.
- July 1643: Excise Ordinance - A sales tax on a wide range of essential commodities & foodstuffs, including beer & salt.
- August 1643: Impressment Ordinance - Introduced conscription, thus ending Parliament's reliance on volunteers. This helped to counteract the effects of desertion + enabled Parliament to build larger armies.
Building Armies - The Parliamentarians (3)
- Parliament's armies continued to evolve in response to changing circumstances.
- Most deeply-rooted problem was the regional bias of its first armies - soldiers were reluctant to leave their counties vulnerable by embarking on national campaigns.
- By grouping its county militias into association armies, Parliament made strategic sense of its forces, e.g. East Anglican counties formed the Eastern Association.
- Superficially this was similar to the Royalists' grouping into military districts, but Parliament took the process a step further.
- August 1643 - Eastern Association reorganised, giving its commander, Earl of Manchester, power to impress a further 20 000 men.
- January 1644 - Parliament gave Manchester direct control of the tax assessments raised in the eastern counties.
- Army of the Eastern Association became Parliament's most effective force.
Building Armies - The Parliamentarians (4)
- Eastern Association became Parliament's 'engine of victory' - Royalists never managed to invade East Anglia.
- Consequently, Parliament enjoyed an advantage denied to the King - a populous, wealthy + sizeable geographical base where taxes could be raised + arrears of tax collected without impediment.
The Evolution of Royalist Military Organisation 16
Commissions of Array issued county by county
County committees formed by wealthy county gentry
6 military districts formed by grouping counties together under regional aristocratic 'grandees'
Regional aristocratic 'grandees' replaced by ruthless professional soldiers with no local ties
The Evolution of Parliament's Military Organisatio
Militia Ordinance claims control of county militias
County committees formed under officers sent from London
MILITARY CHANGES ADMINISTRATIVE AND FISCAL CHANGES
Parliament's Military Organisation - Military Chan
Association armies formed by grouping counties together under aristocratic officers.
Self-Denying Ordinance takes military commands away from aristocrats and gives them to professional soldiers.
New Model Army formed by grouping Association armies and other forces.
Parliament's Military Organisation - Administrativ
County committees enforce series of Ordinances - Assessment, Excise, Sequestration, Compulsory Loans and Impressment.
County committees answerable to central committees based in London.
Leadership for Parliament - Sir Thomas Fairfax
- Was given command of the New Model Army in 1645 in order to heal the political divisions in Parliament.
- Experience general who had commanded the Yorkshire cavalry since 1642, Fairfax was neither an MP or a Lord.
- Came from a wealthy + respected Yorkshire family. His father, Lord Fairfax, commanded a regiment of foot.
- Married to a Presbyterian, he was well placed to maintain good relations between the New Model Army and the Scots.
- Widely respected for his ability, his modesty + his humanity.
The New Model Army
- February 1645 - Parliament passed the New Model Ordinance, bringing together the armies of the Earls of Essex, Manchester + Sir William Waller into a national army under professional officers.
- Regional association armies were replaced by an army that would seek out + fight the King's forces wherever they were.
- House of Lords gave up its powers of command and control. Not an easy decision, but one that emerged from the unimpressive performance of Parliament's forces after their success at Marston Moor in 1644.
- 4 months after it was created, the New Model Army destroyd the King's main field army at Naseby.
- Sometimes seen as main reason for Parliament's victory, but was part of an ongoing process of military reform.
- 22 000 men - 14 400 foot, 6600 horse + 1000 dragoons.
- Paid for by a fixed allocation of £53 000 from the monthly assessments.
- Never quite achieved its theoretica size or pay.
- Other Parliamentary armies continued to exist: separate commands in the West Country + in the North had around 10 000 men each + the Scots' army numbered around 22 000.
Making Alliances - The Royalists
- September 1643 - King signed a Cessation Treaty with the Irish Catholics.
- Was a ceasefire, offering no immediate political settlement but enabling the King (in theory) to bring back the English soldiers from Ireland.
- Many Irish troops brought into England were captured or killed at Nantwich, Cheshire, in January 1644.
- Irish troops helped to secure the Welsh border country for a time.
- Parliament's control of the Navy prevented large numbers of Irish forces from being transferred into England, and the numbers of English + Irish troops available for such service were smaller than was generally believed.
- February 1642 - Henrietta Maria departed for Europe in search of assistance, returning a year later with weapons & money. None of the continental powers had any intention, however, of intervening in England's troubles. They had troubles of their own.
Propaganda Against the King
- The Cessation Treaty meant that rumours spread that the King was planning to introduce Irish Catholic soldiers into the war in England. If Charles won the war, he would be beholden to Catholic forces.
- Treaty raised the old Protestant fears of a Catholic plot + led some Royalists to defect to the Parliamentarian cause.
- Battle of Naseby handed Parliament a major propaganda victory. Parliament captured the correspondence between the King, the Catholic Earl of Digby + the Irish Confederation.
- It was clear that Charles was seeking support from the Confederation's Catholic forces. In exchange, he was promising to govern Ireland with a Catholic Lord Lieutenant, to introduce Catholic bishops into the Irish House of Lords + to make Catholicism the official religion of Ireland.
- Parliament published this correspondence + even those men in Parliament who defended the King's integrity were appalled.
Making Alliances - Parliamentarians (1)
- August 1643 - Parliament formed an alliance with the Scots called the 'Solemn League and Covenant'. The Scots would send an army of 22 000 men into England to help defeat the King.
- In return, the English Parliament had to take the Solemn League and Covenant, meaning that Parliament's MPs and officers were expected to swear an oath to uphold the treaty or alliance. This committed England to a Presbyterian settlement.
- Cementing the alliance was the Committee of Both Kingdoms, creating a joint command over the Scottish + Parliamentary armies.
- Alliance quickly proved its worth. January 1644 - Scottish army, commanded by Alexander Leslie, Earl of Leven, crossed the border into England, forcing the Earl of Newcastle to shift his army northwards from the Midlands to meet the new threat.
- By June - Newcastle's army besieged at York by a combination of Scottish & parliamentary forces.
- Prince Rupert's army forced its way through to York, only to be destroyed at the Battle of Marston Moor (1644).
Making Alliances - Parliamentarians (2)
- Marston Moor was Parliament's first great victory. Enabled Parliament to redeploy its armies to the Midlands + south, boosted Parliament's morale + enhanced the reputations of Leslie and Cromwell.
- Rupert's reputation as the King's ablest general was damaged, and the Earl of Newcastle went into exile.
- Cromwell was critical of the Scots' performance at Marston Moor, but the battle would never have been fought if they hadn't threatened York.
- Victory at Marston Moor placed the terms of the Solemn League and Covenant at the centre of a growing controversy over the Scots' contribution to Parliament's war effort.
Earl of Montrose
- Royalist leader in Scotland, despite being a Covenanter in the 1630s.
- Chose to support the King because he believed the opposition was encroaching too far on the royal prerogative.
- Personal rivalry with the Marquess of Argyll also played a part in his decision.
- Most of his support came from the Highlands, which were largely Catholic.
- After a brilliant campaign that forced the Covenanters to divert forces from England, he was finally defeated at Philiphaugh in September 1645 and went into exile.
Marquess of Argyll
- Leading Covenanter in the 1630s.
- When civil war broke out in England, he pressed for the alliance with the English Parliament which led to the Solemn League and Covenant.
- He believed that only a Parliamentary victory in England could secure the Presbyterian faith in Scotland; if the King won, he would then have overwhelming military force with which to crush the Covenanters in Scotland.
- Both sides faced the problem of internal divisions + political arguments.
- Both sides had men of widely differing views, held together with great difficult by their political leaders.
- King was obviously political leader of the Royalists + had the final say when choices had to be made.
- Parliament - task was more complicated, because no single person could claim the right to make decisions.
- Political coalition covered a spectrum of thought ranging from moderates, who wanted peace at almost any price, to hard-liners, who wanted complete military victory.
Political Struggles - The Royalists (1)
- Charles tended to side with the Cavaliers against the moderate Royalists.
- Moderates certainly noticed this tendency in their King - may have contributed to Lord Falkland's suicide at the First Battle of Newbury + Clarendon wrote despairingly of it.
- However there were times when moderate Royalism prevailed - the King's replies to both the Grand Remonstrance & the Nineteen Propositions were masterpieces of moderation, designed to split the opposition + isolate Pym & his supporters.
- 1643 - King pronounced that Parliament was an illegal assembly.
- 1644 - Clarendon persuaded the King to open the 'Oxford Parliament', a Royalist alternative to the rebel Parliament at Westminster.
- The idea was to show that Charles intended to work hand in hand with a loyal Parliament once the war was over. This might persuade Parliamentarians to change sides + join the King in Oxford.
- The Oxford Parliament also aimed at giving legitimacy to the emergency measures being introduced to raise money + troops for the war.
Political Struggles - The Royalists (2)
- King promised that there would be no return to Personal Rule + that the extraordinary taxes being raised during wartime would not be continued when the war ended, nor would they be regarded as having established any kind of legal peacetime precedent.
- Oxford Parliament drew the support of around 175 MPs and 82 peers.
- In public, the strategy appeared to achieve some success at a time when many Parliamentarians were having second thoughts about the war.
- In private, the King wrote disparagingly of the initiative as the 'mongrel Parliament'.
Political Struggles - The Parliamentarians
- The crisis of 1643-44
- Independents vs. Presbyterians, 1644
- The Self-Denying Ordinance, April 1645
The Crisis of 1643-44 (1)
- Those MPs and Lords who stayed at Westminster in 1642 were 'Parliamentarians' but there were always differences of opinion about what they were fighting for + what would constitute victory.
- Royalist party was created during the year before the outbreak of war as more people began supporting the King.
- This process continued after war was declared, gathered momentum during winter 1642-3 + threatened to undermine Parliament's war effort. It took great skill to keep Parliament focused on the task of winning the war.
- From 1642 to 1644, politics were polarised between the 'war' and 'peace' parties at Westminster. The problem facing Pym + his allies was how to maintain Parliament's resolve to finish what it had started.
- Also a smaller but highly influential third group of radicals, led by republican Henry Marten. Argued for permanent changes to the English constitution, including the possibility of abolishing the monarchy.
- Their existence contributed to a sense of unease among many MPs + Lords, notably Parliament's two most important generals - Essex and Manchester.
The Crisis of 1643-44 (2)
To win the war, the leaders of the 'war party' had to:
- Convince moderates that the radicals would not drive the country into revolution.
- Prevent the 'peace party' from persuading Parliament to conclude a dishonourable peace with the King.
- Prevent substantial numbers of Lords + MPs from defecting to the Royalists.
And they had to do all this while forcing through Parliament the radical legislation needed to achieve victory.
The Crisis of 1643-44 (3)
- Summer 1643 - Parliament faced its greatest test during the siege of Gloucester.
- Parliament was losing the war + as a result the performance of Essex as Lord General was being questioned.
- While Pym defended Essex's reputation, he pushed through Parliament the measures that ultimately gave it victory.
- Essex's march to the relief of Gloucester (September 1643), followed by his success at the first Battle of Newbury (September 1643), marked a turning point in the politics of Parliament's war effort.
Independents vs. Presbyterians: 1644 (1)
- John Pym + John Hampden both died in 1643. Their deaths robbed the House of Commons of two of its most important political managers.
- 1644 - Parliament polarised into 2 new factions: Independents and the Presbyterians. These groups could trace their origins back to the old 'war' and 'peace' parties, but were also driven by new pressures.
- Chief of these was the alliance with Scotland. Parliament had agreed to impose a Presbyterian church settlement on England when the war ended.
- But many English officers were not happy about this.
- In the long run, the impact of the Scottish alliance on Parliament's policies was greater even than its impact on the war against the King.
- The coming of the Scots led to a complete change in the way the 'war' and 'peace' parties viewed the alliance.
- Peace party - Had objected to the alliance on the grounds that it would prolong the war, but now saw in Scottish Presbyterianism a way of bringing the war to a rapid end, preventing further social upheaval.
- War party - Originally supported Scottish intervention believing it was necessary to victory but now was coming to regret it, seeing it as a threat to religious liberty + to an acceptable settlement with the king.
Independents vs. Presbyterians: 1644 (2)
- Trouble was already brewing over relations between Scottish officers serving in the Eastern Association under Manchester + Cromwell. The Scots accused Cromwell of promoting Independents in preference to Presbyterians.
- At first Manchester agreed with Cromwell that the religious beliefs of their soldiers were secondary to their willingness to serve.
- Early in 1644 Cromwell argued with Crawford, a Scottish officer serving with the Eastern Association, for punishing two soldiers for their radical religious beliefs.
- Manchester's overriding concern was to maintain good relations with the Scots.
- Marston Moor confirmed his opinion that the Scottish alliance was central to Parliament's war effort.
- Cromwell drew a different conclusion - the Scots' performance on the battlefield that day was disappointed. He ascribed victory to the godly soldiers under his command.
- Many of these soldiers were motivated by religious beliefs incompatible with the Presbyterian faith.
Independents vs. Presbyterians: 1644 (3)
- Cromwell's reputation as a fighting general was enhanced enormously at Marston Moor + he became more critical both of the Scottish army + its intolerance and of Parliament's willingness to sacrifice his soldiers' religious freedom to please the Scots.
- His outspokenness brought him into conflict with Manchester.
- Tension between Manchester + Cromwell exploded into open argument after the Second Battle of Newbury, where the combined armies of Manchester + Waller failed to defeat a Royalist army half their size.
- Cromwell angry that the King had escaped when Manchester failed to press home his attack.
The Self-Denying Ordinance: April 1645 (1)
- The political crisis of 1644 was resolved by the Self-Denying Ordinance, propsed in the House of Lords by Lord Saye and Sele + in the Commons by Oliver Cromwell.
- 9 Decembe 1644 - Cromwell suggested that all members of both Houses of Parliament resign their commissions, handing over military command of Parliament's armies to professional soldiers.
- The idea of self-denial, like fasting and prayer, appealed to the godly as a way of regaining God's favour, which had shone so brightly at Marston Moor.
- The practical benefits were just as important: at a stroke the Ordinance would sweep away the group of aristocratic commanders who had led the armies since 1642.
- It would also pave the way for the New Model Army by placing the private regiments raised by wealthy politicians under centralised command.
The Self-Denying Ordinance: April 1645 (2)
- One major problem stood in the way of the Self-Denying Ordinance. Marston Moor had turned Cromwell into a national figure - at last, parliament had a general who could win battles. But Cromwell would have to resign his commission under the terms of the Ordinance.
- Much research has focused on the question of whether some premeditated plan existed for excluding Cromwell from the provisions of the Self-Denying Ordinance, but the outcome is not disputed.
- When Parliament appointed Sir Thomas Fairfax as Lord General of the New Model Army + Philip Skippon as Major-General of the infantry, the post of Lieutenant-General of Horse was left vacant.
- This was Cromwell's particular skill, and after twice extending the deadline for his resignation, Parliament approved a request from Fairfax that Cromwell be given command of the New Model cavalry.
- Parliament therefore survived two major political crisis between 1642 and 1645.
- The success of the 'war party' in 1644-45 was something of a compromise: Fairfax had a Presbyterian wife + may have sympathised with the Scots. Nevertheless, Parliament could now focus on the task of winning the war.
- All the effort by both sides would come to nothing unless they could achieve victory on the battlefield.
- Months of careful preparation raising money, recruiting + training soldiers, buying weapons, organising supplies + marshalling armies could be thrown away in a day on the battlefield.
- Many civil war battles were relatively small, and sieges consumed many of the armies' resources.
- Nevertheless, on several occasions the kingdom's fate rested in the hands of the officers commanding the main field armies of the King and Parliament.
Learning From Experience
- The Battle of Edgehill was a panic-stricken, amateur business, which both sides deserved to lose.
- Royalists and Parliamentarians both assumed that the other side would give in after the first sight of blood, but this didn't happen.
- Looking back on Edgehill, both sides drew their conclusions about what had gone wrong.
- Future battles would depend on whether they were willing + able to learn from their mistakes.
- Eyewitnesses on both sides concluded that the performance of their cavalry was crucial, though for different reasons.
- The plan of the Battle of Naseby suggests that armies were arranged before battle in a disciplined + organised way.
- Once battle was joined, however, order could quickly collapse.
- When this happened a great deal depended on the discipline of the soldiers, and the qualities of leadership of their officers.
- The most instructive battle is Marston Moor, where order quickly collapsed, and where either side could have won.
The Battle of Marston Moor: July 1644 (1)
- 7pm of 2 July 1644 - Royalist army of 18 000 men commanded by Prince Rupert faced a Parliamentary and Scottish army of 27 000 men on Marston Moor, 10 miles west of York.
- The two armies adopted the standard deployment of the time, with the infantry in the centre + the cavalry on the wings.
- They were unusually close, the front lines standing only 400 yars apart.
- Separating them was a narrow road running the length of the battlefield between Long Marston and Tockwith, with a ditch + broken hedge on the Royalist side to the north.
- Rupert, whose army was deployed on the flat moor, was relying on the ditch to slow down Parliament's cavalry if it charged.
- Parliament's army was drawn up in a position chosen by Cromwell, on a long ridge + rolling farmland to the south of the road.
- It was a strong position: not only did the army have the advantage of height, but seen from the Royalist lines much of Parliament's army was invisible, tucked away between folds in the hills.
- The road and ditch offered protection from Rupert's famous cavalry. Cromwell had chosen his ground well.
The Battle of Marston Moor: July 1644 (2)
- Rupert was outnumbered, facing the largest Parliamentary army ever assembled, serving under veteran commanders - Alexander Leslie, the Earl of Manchester, Oliver Cromwell + Sir Thomas Fairfax.
- With the evening sun low in the sky under storm clouds, dazzling the Royalists as they peered into the gathering gloom at the indistinct host across the road, Prince Rupert did an extraordinary thing - he went back to his tent to have dinner.
- Taking its cue from its commanding officer, the Royalist army began to relax, preparing psychologically to stand before dawn for battle the following morning.
The Battle of Marston Moor: July 1644 (3)
Why did Rupert go to dinner?
- Thought it was too late to begin a large battle + that the enemy would think so too. In the morning the sun would be in the enemies' eyes.
- After a day of heavy rain another storm was about to sweep across the moor. Wet weather made the musketeers' job almost impossible, trying to keep their powder dry + their matches lit.
- Newcastle's soldiers were still arriving from York and needed time to move into position + rest. Newcastle was urging delay.
- Lord Eythin, Earl of Newcastle's Chief of Staff, was criticising Rupert's dispositions.
The Battle of Marston Moor: July 1644 (4)
- On the hilltop overlooking the battlefield, General Leslie saw the enemy relaxing and seized his opportunity.
- Quoting an old legend that 'a summer's night is as long as a winter's day', he ordered an attack along the entire front.
- On Parliament's left wing, Cromwell's cavalry swept down the hillside, crossed the road + ditch, and attacked the Royalist right wing.
- Lord Byron's Royalist cavalry counter-attacked, but in doing so they blocked the line of fire of their own musketeers.
- Rupert led his own reserve of horse to support Byron, and soon a large cavalry battle was being fought on the outskirts of Tockwith.
- On Parliament's right wing, Sir Thomas Fairfax also led his cavalry down the slope, but ran into trouble.
- The ground was covered with gorse, and narrow lanes + hedges lined with Royalist dragoons stopped his charge.
- He was counter-attacked by Lord Goring's cavalry, and after a fierce battle Fairfax's men were broken, some fleeing from the field while others fell back into their own infantry, creating panic + confusion.
The Battle of Marston Moor: July 1644 (5)
- The crisis of the battle was at hand.
- On the left of Parliament's centre, Crawford's infantry stormed across the ditch + attacked the right wing of the Royalist infantry, which was driven slowly backwards.
- Behind Eythin's infantry were Newcastle's 'Whitecoats', the finest infantry in Rupert's army, ready to take up the battle.
- On Parliament's right wing, the collapse of Fairfax's cavalry had exposed the flank of the Scottish infantry, who were also falling back.
- The battle was twisting clockwise.
- On the western side of the battlefield, Cromwell was knocked from his horse, stunned by a sword blow to the neck.
- David Leslie took control until Cromwell regained his senses + re-entered the battle.
- Cromwell's cavalry now regrouped + charged again, driving their enemies from the field before turning onto the exposed flank of the Royalist infantry. Rupert was forced to take refuge in a field of beans.
The Battle of Marston Moor: July 1644 (6)
- Sir Thomas Fairfax gathered his remaining cavalry and, riding around the back of the Royalist army, attacked their infantry from the rear.
- As darkness fell, the desperate struggle on Parliament's right wing gave way to chaos as the Royalist army disintegrated.
- Last to fall were Newcastle's 'Whitecoats', who refused to surrender and were slaughtered where they stood. The Royalist army had been annihilated.
The Second Civil War: 1648-9
What was the nature of the conflict?
- There were two different strands to the Second Civil War.
- The first was the conflict between proper armies (The Scots vs. the New Model Army).
- The second consisted of uprisings by normal people against their economic and political circumstances.
Economic and Political Uprisings
- In Kent, Essex, south-west England + south Wales, people protested against their economic circumstances.
- Bad harvests had hugely incrased food prices, taxation remained at wartime levels + central government was intervening to manage people's lives as if it were still wartime.
- People wanted the traditional order back and the King to be released. This is not to say that people were for all the ideas + events of the old order, just that they did not like the new order.
- Many people had supported Parliament in the First Civil War.
- These revolts in some of the counties of England & Wales did not succeed - mostly because they were not coordinated.
- The army picked each one off, one by one.
The Scots vs. the New Model Army (1)
- A Scottish Royalist army allied with the King in the Engagement since 26 December 1647. This marched on England.
- Unfortunately for Charles the Scottish army was beaten easily by the New Model Army at Preston in between 17th and 19th August 1648.
- The victory was not just due to the battle-hardened experience + prowess of the New Model Army, but other factors too:
- Lack of support for Charles in the English counties.
- The Engagement proved highly divisive in Scotland - hard-line Covenanters were unable to support an agreement that established a Presbyterian Church for only 3 years. This weakened the Scottish military effort before it reached England.
- James Hamilton, the leading Engager, was militarily inept. He raised and led the force into England that was so easily defeated (poor discipline, etc.).
- Many of the soldiers in the New Model Army, influenced by radical preachers, now believed that Charles was going against the word of God by trying to overturn his defeat in the English Civil War.
The Scots vs. the New Model Army (2)
- As early as April 1648 the army had, in a prayer meeting at Windsor, resolved to call 'Charles Stuart, that man of blood, to an account for that blood he had shed, and mischief he had done'.
- Parliament made one final attempt to settle with Charles. On 24 August 1648 MPs repealed the Vote of No Addresses and reopened negotiations with Charles at Newport.
- Charles continued to prevaricate, believing this tactic would work once more, and the army grandees formulated their position.
- They presented a Remonstrance to Parliament on 20 November. It described Charles as, 'the capital and grand author of all our troubles' and demanded he be brought to justice.
- The army was not prepared to accept continued talks with 'that man of blood' - the army moved towards London.
- This time, the Political Presbyterians did not have the London crowd to help them.
- Parliament made no attempt to appease the army + instead inflamed the situation by ignoring the Remonstrance and voting, on 5 December 1648, that Charles' answers at Newport were enough to continue negotiations.
The English Revolution? - Pride's Purge: 6 Decembe
- On 6 December 1648, with Colonel Pride standing at the entrance to the Commons, the army decided which MPs should be allowed into the chamber.
- Of a total of 507 MPs, 45 were arrested and 186 were secluded.
- 86 MPs withdrew in protest and another 80 stayed away in December and January but returned in February.
- Parliament had been 'cleansed' in what is now known as Pride's Purge.
Did This Make Charles' Execution Inevitable? (1)
- Not necessarily. Some historians believed that army leaders wanted to shut down Parliament rather than cleanse it - the Independent MPs persuaded them otherwise.
Pride's Purge asserted the power of the army, in this case to deal with Charles.
- They debated what would be done with Charles for several weeks. There were several options:
- Depose Charles and send him into exile
- Then abolish the monarchy or:
- Make one of his sons King, like Charles' third son Henry. He was just under 10 years old, so MPs believed he would be young enough to be manipulated into doing what the army & Parliament wanted
- Charles could be tried and imprisoned
- He could have been kept prisoner without trial
- The monarchy could have been abolished without killing Charles
Did This Make Charles' Execution Inevitable? (2)
- In the end the army leaders decided on a public trial in order to make a public, legal case for getting rid of the King - they wanted to legitimise executing him.
- They had decided to execute him because as long as he was alive Charles would be a focus for opposition to the new order.
- In their terms, they were killing Charles to end the bloodshed of the Civil War.
The Trial of King Charles: 1 January 1649 (1)
- The remaining 70 MPs established a High Court of Justice in which to try Charles.
- The House of Lords refused to support the move.
- The House of Commons claimed the authority to speak for the English people.
- To try the case, 135 commissioners were appointed, including 29 army officers. Oliver Cromwell was one of these. On the first day of the trial only 68 turned up.
- Charles refused to recognise the court.
- After a week of deliberations the court pronounced Charles to be guilty of 'divers high crimes and treasons'.
- Charles' death warrant was signed by 59 commissioners.
- He was publicly executed outside the Banqueting House of the Whitehall Palace on 30 January 1649.
- In order to do this, the crime of treason had to be redefined.
The Trial of King Charles: 1 January 1649 (2)
- There was no popular demand for Charles' execution, although radical groups + the army were very much in favour.
- After Charles had been executed, some of the crowd rushed forward to grab handfuls of the soil from below the scaffold and others dipped their handkerchiefs in the royal blood.
- He had won much support due to his dignified approach during the trial + his execution.