Following the posts of The Things History Lost and The Things History Found, I’m going to continue, but combine them together got the final third post of the series. Instead of looking at actual objects or artefacts that one tends to lose, such as treasures and possessions, I like to look at actual events that became – or fell out of being – part of history, such as architecture, laws, and royalty. There have been many. The one aspect I can definitely think of that history lost and found is the British Monarchy.
Since the middle of the Middle Ages, we had a steady throng of Kings and Queens. During the early Stuart period, this began to change. The King, Charles I, was not a very successful monarch. Much of what he did led to controversy, such as marrying a French Catholic, imposing new prayer books in church, and banishing Parliament.
In 1642, the English Civil War broke out. The whole of Britain decided into two: the Royalists (aka Cavaliers) for the King, and the Parliamentarians (aka Roundheads) for, erm, Parliament. The latter was led by Oliver Cromwell. It was a massive dispute over who should rule the country: the King or the Parliament? It was a bloody war that went on for nine years…
When the Roundheads won the Civil War (technically, there were two Civil Wars), he declared the King a traitor. Charles had surrendered himself to the Scots, who handed him over the Parliament. He was charged with ‘high treason’, despite being a king, and executed on 27 January 1649.
It was end of an era. The monarchy was over. No more Kings and Queens were to be had.
In 1642, the English Civil War broke out. Britain was divided into two: Cavaliers vs the Roundheads.
Britain went into a Republic – or more accurately, Puritan – State. Cromwell appointed himself dictator. Being the strict Puritan he was, he banned Christmas, football, and anything fun. When Cromwell died in 1658, his son came to take over, but he quit eight months later. He was not fit, nor up, for the job.
As a result, the Republic was falling apart, and the British people were fed up of not bring able to have any fun.
The son of the executed King – Charles II, in exile in France – was welcomed back to England with open arms. Consenquently, in 1660, the Monarchy was restored. And ever since then, we’ve had another string of Kings and Queens in Britain, which I hope continues for many hundreds of years from now.
I always thought that England never had a revolution (albeit not a people one), and we never went into Republic like how France has. Clearly, we did, although it was for a short time. I was wrong, and I stand corrected.
Long live the King!
In response to Writing 101: Third Time's a Charm.