King Charles the Martyr, 1643-1649

By Esmé Wingfield-Stratford | Go to book overview

amiable Mr Hopkins, and there appears every reason to believe that he was eventually subjected to a course of his own tests, and that having failed to prove his innocence by drowning when thrown, bussed up, into the water, he was pulled out and eventually hanged for a wizard, according to his own prescription.

It is only by forcing ourselves to look at such cases in the concrete, that we can form some faint idea of the state of mind generated by the time the civil war had entered on its fourth campaigning year, and what the attempt to uproot the country from its political and spiritual foundations had actually come to signify for ordinary people. Creatures like Blue Dick and William Dowsing and Witch-finder Hopkins did actually walk abroad, and were able to work their crazy will with the full support and approval of the revolutionary authorities. We shall then begin to realize against what it was that on behalf of his people King Charles had taken his stand and why, from his point of view, there could be no question of surrender on the main issue, even to save his own life.


3
"THREE THINGS I WILL NOT PART WITH"

Now that the business of active campaigning was partially suspended, the craving for peace--peace at almost any pricebecame more than ever rife among the King's followers. For to even the most loyal Cavaliers it was becoming apparent that unless His Majesty could come to terms with the Westminster Parliament, while he still had an army in the field to back him, he would before long find himself at their mercy. With the North gone and the area under his control continually shrinking, with the estates of the loyal gentry bled white in his cause and their rents unpaid, where was he to find means to grapple with the immensely superior resources in wealth and manpower at the enemy's disposal? Quite apart from the weaker spirits who were sneaking off in increasing numbers to make their own terms, the feeling was almost unanimous among the King's supporters that the time had come for him to end a hopeless situation in the only way possible.

But was there a way possible that would not also have been a

-81-

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King Charles the Martyr, 1643-1649
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Introduction v
  • Contents ix
  • Illustrations xiii
  • I - The Clinch 1
  • I - The Court at Oxford 3
  • 3 - Newark and Cheriton 7
  • 4 - A Desperate Situation 11
  • 5 - Adieu! 16
  • 6 - The King's Strategy 19
  • 7 - A Night March 21
  • 8 - Rupert's Flank March Through Lancashire 25
  • 9 - The Relief of York and Cropredy Bridge 30
  • 10 - Marston Moor--The Challenge 33
  • II - Marston Moor--The Decision 36
  • 12 - The Escape of the Queen 50
  • 14 - Second Newbury and the Cavalier Recovery 54
  • 15 - Artist as General 58
  • II - Defeat 71
  • I - Tertium Quid 73
  • 3 - "Three Things I Will Not Part With" 76
  • 4 - The Liquidation of the Primate 81
  • 5 - A Foredoomed Negotiation 88
  • 6 - An Irish Imbroglio 92
  • 9 - Prelude to Naseby 97
  • 10 - Naseby 102
  • 12 - The King's Cabinet Rifled 112
  • 13 - The King Takes His Stand 116
  • 15 - Meeting and Reconciliation 124
  • 16 - Last Days at Oxford 130
  • 17 - Hobson's Choice 141
  • III - Captivity 149
  • I - Confidence Trick 151
  • 2 - Third Degree at Newcastle 155
  • 4 - "Barbarously Baited" 159
  • 5 - Foreshadowing Martyrdom 162
  • 6 - A King for Cash 168
  • 7 - Holdenby Backwater 171
  • 8 - The Mutiny of the New Model 173
  • 9 - The Commission of Cornet Joyce 178
  • 10 - The King at Newmarket 189
  • 15 - The Fall of London 203
  • 16 - Cromwell on the Turn 208
  • 17 - A Darkening Prospect 219
  • 18 - Escape from Prison 224
  • 21 - The Engagement with the Scots 232
  • 22 - The Trap Shuts 244
  • 24 - Escape Barred 247
  • 26 - Jane Whorwood 256
  • IV - Martyrdom 285
  • I - The Train is Laid 287
  • 3 - Hurst Castle and Pride's Purge 295
  • 4 - Journey to Windsor 299
  • 6 - Conspiracy to Murder 301
  • 7 - High Court of Justice 308
  • 8 - By What Authority? 313
  • 13 - Cromwell Takes Charge 344
  • 14 - Preparation for Death 348
  • 16 - "Cruel Necessity" 354
  • Appendices 369
  • Index 381
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