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Why did Cromwell become Lord Protector In December 1653?

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Introduction

Charlie Hanson Why did Cromwell become Lord Protector In December 1653? After completing the defeat of Scotland Cromwell returned to London and the problems caused by the form of government under which England, and now Scotland as well, was ruled. The Parliament, of course, continued its policy of making the English Church and the English society as narrowly Puritan as possible, restricting the authorization for the election of members of Parliament and maintaining the size of the Rump Parliament itself. It was in no rush to re-establish the broadly based Parliament that had first challenged and successfully subdued King Charles I. The new system of government with its Council of State was proving to be unworkable as far as Cromwell was concerned. His experiences with the Army throughout the Civil Wars, in England, Ireland and Scotland had proven to him the benefits of strong executive power. He could now understand the dead King's point of view in his own frustrating dealings with the Rump Parliament. That wasn't any consolation to the slain King, of course, but it does give us some further insight into Cromwell's views. ...read more.

Middle

he asked, and then answered contemptuously: 'Take it away.' Then he dismissed the Council of State as well. The so-called 'Long Parliament' was finally ended. Yet another coup had taken place in England. Oliver Cromwell was dictator without even a submissive Parliament to which he had to answer. One thing the Rump Parliament had done that must have pleased the rapidly inflating ego of Oliver Cromwell was to grant him an allowance of four thousand pounds per year and the gift of Hampton Court palace as well. Despite his Puritan disregard for flamboyant displays he willingly accepted both and took to wearing the clothes befitting one of such high station. It doesn't take very much to corrupt people, even those who might think of themselves as incorruptible. And Oliver certainly thought of himself in those terms. Apparently there was little or no dissent from Cromwell's latest actions. Some thought that they would eventually lead back to monarchy. Ultimately they were correct. Others, the more deeply religious Puritans, called, 'Fifth Monarchists' those who expected Christ to return and reign over the world would be disappointed when Jesus Christ failed to make his appearance. ...read more.

Conclusion

Cromwell had created another fiend that he couldn't control. This, too, had to be ended. And it was on 12 December 1653 the 'Barebones Parliament', under pressure from the army, voted its own dissolution. The army then presented Oliver Cromwell with a solution to the political problems facing the country. This was a document entitled, 'Instrument of Government', by which he would become the, 'Lord Protector'. It also proposed a new Parliament elected on a strictly property qualification contract, excluding royalists and Catholics, and another Executive Council to advise both the Parliament and the Protector. Cromwell didn't hesitate in accepting the proposal as a 'Constitution' for the Commonwealth of England, Ireland and Scotland. It was England's first and to date its only written Constitution. Of course, it wouldn't have been created without the knowledge and consent of the person who was to be its nominated leader. Cromwell couldn't refuse leadership, so on 16 December 1653; Oliver Cromwell took the oath as Lord Protector. A new era was about to begin in a land still torn by political, social and religious differences and bitterness. ...read more.

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