Monday, January 4, 2010

Five to be Arrested in Parliament

" I am convinced the spirit of Pym or Hampden has transmigrated into the rogue, and continues to demonstrate his hatred against royalty and all its adherents."

The above is from Scott's Woodstock.

An act which was a prelude to the English Civil War occurred on this day (January 4) in 1642.  Parliamentarians Pym, Hampden, Hollis, Haselrig and Strode were on Charles I's short list of enemies after the king was served by the Long Parliament with the Grand Remonstrance - a list of grievances against Charles.  In addition to being critical of Charles' actions, Parliament's complaints were strongly anti-Catholic.  Charles' wife was the French Catholic Henrietta Maria.

Charles may have feared that Parliament was considering impeaching his Queen, when he entered the Parliament with an eye toward arresting five of its members.  But the intended prey escaped before Charles reached Parliament.  It was a terrible miscalculation on the King's part, turning some of his existing supporters against him.  The English Civil War ensued, beginning on October 26, 1642 (Battle of Edgehill).

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