|“||I desire not to keep my place in this government an hour longer than I may preserve England in its just rights, and may protect the people of God in such a just liberty of their consciences.||„|
|~ Cromwell as he dissolves the First Protectorate Parliament.|
Oliver Cromwell (April 25th, 1599 - September 3rd, 1658) was a military leader and later Lord Protector of England. After the execution of Charles I in the aftermath of the English Civil War, Cromwell ruled England under religious rule and banned several things including:
- Make up
- Hot food on a Sunday
- All music, including church hymns (although he secretly enjoyed listening to music in private)
- Bear bating and other forms of entertainment
- Public kissing
- Going to church on Christmas day
Cromwell used his army to police the country and enforce these laws, with harsh punishments being administered to anyone who dared to violate said laws. He also sought to destroy Catholic influence in England, hence the reason he outlawed Christmas. Upon his invasion of Ireland to prevent the future King Charles II gaining an army there, he went on a near genocidal campaign to exterminate the Irish Catholics in what's known as the Cromwellian Conquest of Ireland, wiping out unto one quarter of the population through warfare, extermination and famine caused by burning their crops. To this day, mentioning Cromwell's name in Ireland is likely to provoke a violent reaction despite this Cromwell protected Irish Protestants and some Irish who surrendered to his rule such as Clonmel where he made his troops treat the townspeople and Irish property with respect , he saw the massacre of the Irish Catholics as revenge or judgement for what the Irish Catholics did to Protestants during the Irish Rebellion Of 1641.
Cromwell however did do some good things, such as removing much of the feudal influence from the country. Although he did not make it democratic as some have claimed, he quickly got rid of Parliament when the disagreed with him (the exact same thing that King Charles I had done to start the civil war). He was also a skilled General and is considered one of the best English Millitary leaders ever, as such he is often held by the scholars to be ranked with likes of Malborough and Wellington. He also invited the Jews back to England, following them being kicked out almost 400 years earlier by King Edward I.
Cromwell died on September 3rd, 1658 at the age of 59 in Whitehall, likely due to malaria.
After his death, he was buried. However, when King Charles II came back to power his body was dug up, hung in chains and beheaded.