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Author Topic: The English Civil War - A People's History  (Read 1423 times)

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Offline Bilgerat

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Re: The English Civil War - A People's History
« Reply #3 on: February 17, 2017, 18:03:21 »
Kent wasn't really involved in the First Civil War (1642 - 1646) as most of the fighting in that war occurred in the midlands and the west country. The Second Civil War (1647 - 1649) was more a series of co-ordinated uprisings for the King, one of which occurred in Kent. The fleet at the Downs declared for the King and the Royalists took control of the castles at Deal, Walmer and Sandown and attempted to take control of Dover Castle. Lord Fairfax, the Commander-in-Chief of the Parliament Army marched into Kent and stormed Maidstone in the battle of the same name on 1st June 1648, with the surviving Royalists fleeing into Essex via Sheerness. After that, Fairfax delegated command of the Army in Kent to Colonel Nathaniel Rich with orders to mop up remaining Royalist resistance in Kent. Rich marched east and prevented the Royalists from taking control of Dover Castle while taking Walmer Castle from the Royalists. Colonel Rich's force wasn't strong enough to beseige both Deal and Sandown Castles and at Deal, the fleet came to the Royalists' assistance. Eventually, Cromwell's victory over the Royalists at the Battle of Preston on the 19th August 1648 convinced the Royalists in Kent that all hope was lost and they eventually surrendered both Deal and Sandown Castles to the Parliament Army. The Royalist uprising in Kent is considered to have ended with the surrender of Sandown Castle on 5th September 1648.

The uprising in Kent, together with the other uprisings convinced Parliament that King Charles I was not to be trusted. He was brought from Carisbrooke Castle on the Isle of Wight, where he had been held after the First Civil War had ended and a controversial show trial was held at Westminster Hall. Convicted of high treason, King Charles I was executed in front of the Banqueting House at Whitehall Palace on 30th January 1649.

Kent played no part in the Third Civil War (1649 - 1651), which was an attempt by the Prince of Wales (the future King Charles II) to invade England from Scotland, which was finally ended by his defeat at the Battle of Worcester on 3rd September 1651. Charles was forced to flee back to France, at one point famously hiding in an oak tree while Parliament soldiers searched for him (hence the legend of the 'Royal Oak').
"I did not say that the French will not come, I said they will not come by sea" - Lord St Vincent

Offline davpott

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Re: The English Civil War - A People's History
« Reply #2 on: February 14, 2017, 22:18:43 »
Fortunately Kent was largely unaffected by the fighting. At one point a militia raised in Kent got as far as the border between Kent and Surrey/Sussex then refused to go any further announcing they would fight in Kent but not beyond.   

Offline Bilgerat

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The English Civil War - A People's History
« Reply #1 on: June 15, 2016, 17:48:13 »
Religious extremism, radical hate preachers wandering the land whipping people up into a frenzy, farms and fields laid waste, cities and towns reduced to ruins, corpses rotting in fields by the hundred. All sounds depressingly familiar doesn't it? Only this is not some dusty corner of the Middle East, or some far-off country few have even heard of, this is England's green and pleasant land in the 1640's and 1650's.

Although far more people were killed and wounded in the World Wars of the 20th Century, in terms of the proportion of the population who were casualties, the English Civil War was the bloodiest in our history. It took almost a century for our nation to recover from a decade-long orgy of violence and destruction which tore families apart, set fathers against sons and brothers against each other, with unspeakable atrocities committed by both sides. This fascinating book by Diane Purkiss, our leading Civil War historian, tells the story of how it came to happen, in the words of the people who were there. Using letters and diaries as well as official records, it tells the story of the wars which gave birth to our nation as we know it.

Fascinating stuff and well recommended.
"I did not say that the French will not come, I said they will not come by sea" - Lord St Vincent

 

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