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Cromwell's Failed State and the Monarchy (Hardback)

British History Military Royal History

By Timothy Venning
Imprint: Pen & Sword Military
Pages: 368
Illustrations: 8 black and white illustrations
ISBN: 9781526764218
Published: 18th May 2020


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Regicide, military dictatorship, war and rumours of war, opposition from all sides and collapse of a 'failed state': such is the story of Oliver Cromwell's unique experiment in the governance of Britain, following the English-British Civil Wars. The British state of the Three Kingdoms of England, Scotland and Ireland were united in the Protectorate, with Cromwell as Lord Protector, 1649 to 1660, but collapsed under the weight of huge turbulence and problems from all sides - political and religious, constitutional, foreign military and naval threat, even from the Dutch, the Protectorate's natural ally. Finally, with Cromwell's death in 1658 - the 'heroic' Cromwell - and succession of the hapless Richard Cromwell, the 'failed state' collapsed with the restoration of the Stuart dynasty, in 1660 and royal, aristocratic and gentry rule.

This is a really interesting book for me - I'm familiar with Cromwell from such historians as Lady Antonia Fraser, and have always held him in the highest regard. I am aware of his various faults, but despite these, I have always thought that he was the best thing to happen to this country at that particular time. Timothy Venning doesn't change my mind about him, but it does give me pause for thought.

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Royal Reviewer
 Timothy Venning

About Timothy Venning

Timothy Venning obtained his BA and PhD from King's College, University of London, specialising in Cromwell's foreign policy and is a gifted historian, deep and critical researcher and attractive writer with a wide range of historical interests. He can slip easily from and effectively into early history, the middle ages, the early modern period including Britain and Europe. He combines academic rigour with accessibility for general readers and specialists. Publications include: Dictionary of National Biography (OUP - contributions); Cromwellian Foreign Policy (Palgrave); A Compendium of British Office-Holders (Palgarve); A Chronology of Byzantine Empire (Palgrave); A Chronology of the Roman Empire (Continuum); A Chronology of the Crusades (Routledge); A Chronology of Early Medieval Britain and Europe Ad 450-1066 (Routledge; Anglo-Saxon Kings and Queens; The Kings and Queens of Wales; The Kings and Queens of Scotland; Lords of the Isles: Rulers of the Highlands, Hebrides, and Man; King-Makers: Lords of the Welsh Marches (Amberley); If Rome Had Survived; An Alternative History of Britain; The Anglo-Saxon Age; The Hundred Years War; Norman and Plantagenets; The Tudors; The English Civil War (all Pen and Sword); plus 8 titles forthcoming including academic titles: Cromwell's Failed State and the Monarchy; The Fall of the British Republic and the Return of the King: From Cromwell's Commonwealth to Stuart Monarchy, 1657-1670: plus more Royal Mysteries as above and the pipeline. (All Pen and Sword).

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