The English Civil War of the mid-17th Century was part of a wider series of conflicts that spanned the entire British Isles, involving Scotland and Ireland as well as England and Wales. Also called "The Great Rebellion", "The English Revolution" and "The Wars of the Three Kingdoms", the British Civil Wars and Commonwealth period witnessed the trial and execution of a king, the formation of a republic in England, a theocracy in Scotland and the subjugation of Ireland. The first attempt was made to unite the three nations under a single government, and the foundations of the modern British constitution were laid.
From the signing of the Scottish National Covenant of 1638 to the Restoration of the Monarchy in 1660, this site explores the turmoil of the Civil Wars and Interregnum, and the constitutional experiments of the Commonwealth and Protectorate period of the 1650s.
- Time Lines: chronological listings of events during the period 1638-60
- Biography: who's who in the Civil Wars, Commonwealth and Protectorate
- Military: military history of the Civil Wars, Commonwealth and Protectorate
- Site Map: easy access to all pages on this site, latest updates and additions
- Search: search this site
- Links: links to websites and online articles relevant to this period
- Bibliography: reference books and articles used in creating this site
The British Civil Wars & Commonwealth website is a perpetual work-in-progress. The site developed out of my personal interest in the Cromwellian era and is not affiliated to any organisation or institution. Every effort is made to ensure that the information presented is accurate and objective.
In 2005, this site was selected for preservation by the British Library. It has been regularly archived since October 2005 as part of the UK Web Archive, where older versions of the site may be viewed.
In February 2011, the British Civil Wars & Commonwealth website celebrated 10 years online.
All articles written by David Plant, 2001-12
With thanks for help and information to:
Richard Archer, Simon Barne, Richard Brzezinski, Susan Chalkley, Steven Culver, Gary Danvers, Tony Davis, John Dillon, John Dobie, John Dorney, Martin Marix Evans, David Fell, Martin Fiennes, James A. Gallaghar, Jan Kellett, John Matthews, Stephanie McEvoy, Tony Millington, Keith Nield, William Owens, Andreas Pechtl, Jason Smith, Phil Widdows, Tim Williams, David Wilson, John Wright
Special thanks to Stu Nicholls whose CSS Play website is a great source of styling inspiration for webmasters.
Site first published: February 2001
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License
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Unless otherwise stated, all historical dates are given according to the Julian calendar, which was used in England until 1752. During the 17th century, the Julian calendar date was 10 days behind the Gregorian calendar, which was used in many European countries. Years are numbered from 1st January, though many 17th century sources number the year from 25th March. See this Wikipedia page for a summary of the problems of historical dating and calendar conventions.
Throughout the site, historical or traditional counties are used for geographical location rather than modern administrative regions, in keeping with 17th century county designations. However, all place-names are given in their modern spelling.