Location: Microfiche Cabinet 16, Drawer 9
These are printed transcriptions of the domestic papers of Commonwealth.
"Oliver Cromwell, Puritan leader of the Parliamentary side of the Civil War,
declared England a republic, or the 'Commonwealth', in 1649. As Lord Protector,
(he refused the title, 'King'), from 1653, Cromwell established greater
religious toleration and raised England's prestige in Europe on the basis of an
alliance with France against Spain.
He was quick to curb any opposition, and in 1649, he executed the leaders of
the Levellers, (an influential democratic party in the English Civil War),
following their demand for radical reform. Cromwell also crushed Irish
resistance in 1649-50, and defeated the Scots - who had acknowledged Charles I's
son as king - at Dunbar in 1650, and in Worcester in 1651. The Scottish
parliament was suspended and Scottish representatives attended a united
parliament in Westminster.
Cromwell's response to opposition became increasingly similar to Charles I's:
he tended to expel any member (and dissolve any parliament) which challenged his
views. After a period of military dictatorship, his last parliament offered him
the crown; he refused because he feared the army's republicanism.
When Cromwell died in 1658, he was succeeded as Lord Protector by his son,
Richard. As the Commonwealth collapsed into financial chaos and disputes between
the military and administration increased, parliament was dissolved and Richard
Cromwell was overthrown. (BBC
How to search the collection:
There is an index at the end of each volume. Each entry in the index has a
number (or sometimes several numbers). Use that number to find the page in
the microfiche. The pages are clearly written on the top of the microfiche
card. Sometimes the volumes are divided into parts, so pay careful
attention to what part your document number is in.
There is an explanation of the scope of the collection on the first
For more information about this subject in our Library Catalog, check out
Time Period: 17th Century
Subject keywords: Great Britain - History
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