When do we meet?
Starting on Monday 26th Sept.
The Course will then be every 2nd and 4th Monday afternoons thereafter.
There will be six sessions before Christmas, and seven from Jan. to April.
Time: 2.30 – 4.30pm
Open to all members. Please contact Alan now to register your interest.
Assuming the right numbers, 10 to 12, I hope to use Risbygate Sports Club, which has good parking.
What do we do?
The course starts in 1625 with the accession of Charles 1. England in contrast to the ravages of war affecting Europe, appeared to be a haven of calm and unity.
By 1642 not only England, but also Scotland & Ireland, were experiencing civil wars.
Was this due to misguided policies of Charles, the too great a role played by his French Catholic wife Henrietta Maria, or the growth of a militant Protestant opposition, especially in Parliament?
How much political capital did Charles lose because of his love of the Baroque, including Italian works of art?
Between 1642 – 1649 the “three kingdoms” (England, Scotland & Ireland) experienced three civil wars with devastating consequences.
How did the people react?
Many tried to remain neutral, but that is not easy: you must support the first troops to arrive in the area! Some of common people had their own agenda, for example, tearing down enclosures, rather than supporting the king or parliament.
But it was a nasty, bloody and conflict: over the three wars more people were killed relative to the population than were killed in World War I.
After 1645, at the end of the first civil war, the political, social & religious landscape began to change dramatically. This was due in large part to the emergence of a new political force, the New Model Army, who having won the civil war for the parliamentary side against the king, refused to obey parliament’s order to disband.
Under the protection of the Army did England come close to the kind of revolution later seen in France in 1789 or Russia in 1917.
There was one truly revolutionary act in 1649, namely the execution of Charles 1.
In addition, in the latter 1640s into 1650s some of the most radical & fascinating political, and religious groups in English history emerged. Groups such as the Levellers, the Diggers, the Fifth Monarchists, the Ranger, Baptists, and Quakers (latter two much more radical than today). It did appear that the world was “turning upside down”.
Perhaps one man above all stabilised England in the 1650s, a hugely successful military leader, a parliamentarian, and a man of religion, “God’s Englishman “.
A hero to many, a man with blood on his hands to others (especially the Irish) Cromwell is a fascinating and hugely controversial figure. He ruled England, effectively as a monarch though not with the title) between 1653- 658. Within two years of his death however King Charles II was back on the English throne.
I hope that the problems of copyright and use of printers notwithstanding to use a range of sources, including visual material. The period saw an explosion of printed pamphlets, news sheets etc. so hopefully we can get copies of some.