The Treaty of Breda — Montrose defeated and executed — Cromwell invades Scotland — Covenanters defeated at the battle of Dunbar


1 Publication of Gerrard Winstanley's A New Yeere's Gift for the Parliament and Armie. Source: ODNB
2 Parliament votes to extend the Oath of Engagement to all adult males. HCP1
9 Sir Henry Vane reports on his committee's recommendations for the regulation of elections to future Parliaments, but plans for new elections are dropped because of increasing concerns over imminent war with Scotland. HCP1
11 The House of Commons requests Cromwell's return from Ireland to deal with the situation in Scotland; Cromwell ignores the request until he has secured Ireland. HCP1
  Charles II writes to the Committee of Estates in Edinburgh proposing a meeting at Breda in Holland to discuss a Royalist-Covenanter alliance. HCP1
12 Charles writes to the Marquis of Montrose, urging him to continue his preparations for an invasion of Scotland despite the negotiations with the Covenanters. HCP1
13 Charles sends Colonel Titus with a message for the English Presbyterians, urging them to support the proposed Scottish alliance. HCP1
14 Oliver Cromwell issues a declaration in response to the assembly of Clacmanoise in which he vehemently denounces the Roman Catholic clergy. HCP1
16 Anthony Ascham appointed Commonwealth ambassador to Madrid; Charles Vane appointed to Lisbon. HCP1
17 Robert Blake receives his commission to sail against Prince Rupert's fleet in Portugal. CWS
29 Cromwell advances from Youghal to Mallow to begin his campaign against Kilkenny and Clonmel. Colonel Reynolds leads the advance guard of the eastern column from Dungarvin to Carrick while Ireton follows with artillery. Lord Broghill secures the western flank around Mallow. TGG, CIR
31 Cromwell captures Kilbeheney Castle in County Limerick. TCG, CIR


1 The House of Commons orders the burning by the public hangman of all copies of A Fiery Flying Roll by the Ranter Abiezer Coppe. Source: ODNB
2 Cromwell captures Rehill Castle in County Tipperary. Source: TCG
3 Cromwell crosses the River Suir at Rochestown and advances to Fethard Castle in County Tipperary, which surrenders without resistance. CIR, TCG
  Colonel Reynolds besieges Callan in County Kilkenny. CIR
4 Cashel Castle surrenders to Cromwell without resistance. TCG
5 The Committee of Estates begins debating whether to send commissioners to treat with Charles. RCRS
8 Surrender of Callan to Colonel Reynolds after the execution of captured soldiers. TCG, CIR
  Ormond appoints Thomas Preston governor of Waterford. HCP1
10 Major-General Ireton storms and captures Ardfinnan Castle. CIR
11 Elections for the second Council of State held in Parliament. Only three of the former councillors are not re-elected: the Earl of Musgrave, who had never attended, the Earl of Portland who had died, and the unpopular Sir John Danvers. New members elected to the Council include the republican Thomas Chaloner. HCP1, TRP
13 Charles II leaves Jersey and sets sail for France. HCP1
21 At a stormy meeting in Edinburgh, the Committee of Estates agrees its terms for negotiations with Charles and appoints commissioners to be sent to Breda. RCRS
  Charles confers with Henrietta Maria at Beauvais in France. She tries to dissuade him from taking the Covenant and urges him not to abandon the English Royalists or his supporters in Ireland in favour of the Presbyterians. HCP1
22 Parliament passes an act for the Propagation of the Gospel in Wales. AOI
24 Cahir Castle in County Tipperary besieged by Cromwell. Its governor, Colonel Matthews, surrenders as soon as Cromwell's artillery opens fire. The capture of Cahir breaks up Royalist lines of communication between Limerick and Clonmel. TCG, CIR
25 Parliament votes houses and property in London to Cromwell in recognition of his services. HCJ
26 Parliament orders all Catholics, Royalists and mercenary soldiers to leave London. HCP1
  Colonel Hewson marches south-west from Dublin into County Kildare with 3,000 men and three siege guns. CIR
27 Kiltinan Castle in County Tipperary bombarded into submission by Cromwell. TCG


  (Early March) General-at-Sea Robert Blake sails from Portsmouth with a squadron of fifteen ships and orders to destroy Prince Rupert's fleet in Portugal. Source: CN, CWS
1 Surrender of Ballisonan Castle near Carlow to Colonel Hewson. Royalists abandon garrisons at Athy and Maryborough (Portaloise). CIR
3 Colonel Hewson advances to capture Castledermot before returning to Dublin to replenish his supplies. CIR
7 The Scottish Parliament meets in Edinburgh and issues final instructions to the commissioners to King Charles at Breda. RCRS
8 The Marquis of Ormond attempts to rally support against Cromwell at Limerick. Catholic clergy insist upon the power to veto military appointments. HCP1
10 Blake's fleet arrives at Cascaes Bay at the mouth of the River Tagus in Portugal. Blake sends a message to King John of Portugal demanding his co-operation against Prince Rupert's squadron and that the Commonwealth fleet be allowed the use of Lisbon harbour. HCP1, PRA
11 Portuguese forts fire warning shots when Blake attempts to sail up the River Tagus towards Prince Rupert's anchorage in Lisbon harbour. Blake agrees to withdraw pending diplomatic negotiations to persuade Rupert to leave Portugal. CWS, PRA
16 Charles II arrives at Breda in Holland and consults representatives of the English Royalists. HCP1
18 The gentry and nobility of Ulster meet officers of the Ulster army at Belturbet in County Cavan to choose a successor to Owen Roe O'Neill. Under pressure from the clergy, Heber MacMohan, Bishop of Clogher, is elected. HCP1
  Blake's squadron anchors in Oeiras Bay, two miles below Prince Rupert's ships, claiming that bad weather has forced them to seek shelter. HCP1, CWS
19 Colonel Hewson captures the crossing of the River Barrow at Leighlinbridge and advances to Gowran near Kilkenny. CIR
  Charles II appoints Lord Eythin lieutenant-general to Montrose. HCP1
  First meeting between Charles II and the Scottish commissioners at Breda. RCRS
20 Hewson joins forces with Cromwell, Ireton and Reynolds at Gowran. The governor of Gowran Castle refuses Cromwell's summons to surrender. CIR
21 Gowran surrenders to Cromwell when the Parliamentarian artillery opens fire; Royalist officers executed. CIR, TCG
22 Cromwell advances to Kilkenny. CIR
23 Sir Walter Butler rejects Cromwell's summons to surrender Kilkenny. CIR
  The Marquis of Montrose lands at Kirkwall in the Orkneys with a force of German and Danish mercenaries. HCP1
24 An attempt to storm the gates of Kilkenny driven back by the defenders. CIR
25 Opening of negotiation between Charles II and the Scottish commissioners at Breda. HCP1
  Bombardment of Kilkenny begins. CIR
26 A new High Court of Justice set up with powers to condemn to death anyone acting against the interests of the Commonwealth. HCP1
27 Sir Walter Butler surrenders Kilkenny to Cromwell. CIR
  The Council of State issues orders for Cromwell's return to deal with the Royalist threat from Scotland. CIR
  (Late March) Lord Broghill and Henry Cromwell defeat Lord Inchiquin's forces near Mallow in County Cork. Inchiquin withdraws into Connacht. CIR, ODNB


1 The Marquis of Ormond reluctantly signs the commission appointing Bishop MacMahon commander of the Ulster army. Source: HCP1
2 Cromwell transfers his headquarters at Ormond's mansion at Carrick-on-Suir. CIR
8 The Prince of Orange mediates in the negotiations between Charles II and the Scottish commissioners at Breda. He urges the commissioners to modify their demands, but they refuse. HCP1
9 Parliament directs the Council of State to increase security against the threat of a Scottish invasion and Royalist insurrection. HCP1
  Major-General Hurry leads the Marquis of Montrose's advance guard from the Orkney Islands to the Scottish mainland. RCRS, HCP1
12 Montrose crosses the Pentland Firth with his main force and establishes a temporary headquarters at Thurso in Caithness. D1650
13 Claiming retaliation for an alleged assassination attempt, Prince Rupert sends a booby-trapped boat disguised as a fruit-seller out to Blake's squadron at Lisbon, which almost succeeds in blowing up the Leopard. A watering party from the Bonaventure attacked by Rupert's men; one sailor killed and three taken prisoner. HCP1, CWS
16 The Committee of Estates orders General Leslie to march against Montrose. RCRS
17 Major-General Hurry besieges Dunbeath Castle in Caithness. TCG
19 Parliament passes an Act enforcing strict observance of the Lord's day. AOI
  Parson John Platt leads fifty men in an attack on Gerrard Winstanley's Digger community at Cobham in Surrey. The Digger settlement destroyed. ODNB
21 Surrender of Dunbeath Castle to Major-General Hurry. TCG, HCP1
24 At Cashel, Cromwell meets a delegation headed by Dean Michael Boyle and other representatives of the Protestant Royalists fighting in Ireland to negotiate a treaty independently of Ormond and Inchiquin. CIR
25 Montrose joins Major-General Hurry at Carbisdale and takes up a strong defensive position. D1650
  Rendezvous of Covenanter troops marching against Montrose at Brechin. General Leslie sends Lieutenant-Colonel Strachan ahead with an advance guard of cavalry. RCRS
26 A treaty signed at Cashel between Cromwell and representatives of the Protestant Royalists in Ireland. Most Protestants fighting in Leinster and Munster agree to lay down their arms. The treaty is also accepted by the Ulster Scots and the Lagan Army. CIR
27 Battle of Carbisdale: Lieutenant-Colonel Strachan defeats the Marquis of Montrose. Montrose escapes into the mountains. RCRS
  Cromwell joins his forces at the siege of Clonmel in County Tipperary. HCP1
29 Charles II agrees terms with the Scottish commissioners at Breda after all attempts to get help from other European powers have failed. HCP1
30 Montrose reaches Ardvreck Castle on Loch Assynt where he is betrayed to the Covenanters by Neil MacLeod. HCP1
  Lord Willoughby of Parham arrives on Barbados. ODNB


  [Early May] The bombardment of Clonmel begins. Cromwell's field guns are not powerful enough to breach the walls so he orders up heavy artillery. Source: CIR
1 Charles II signs the draft of the Treaty of Breda, agreeing that he will come to Scotland and promising to impose Presbyterianism in England and to repudiate his arrangements with Ormond and Montrose. HCP1
4 Major-General Holborn fetches Montrose from Ardvreck Castle. HCP1
8 Montrose delivered to General Leslie at Tain then sent south. HCP1
  Former Royalist journalist Marchamont Nedham publishes The Case of the Commonwealth of England Stated, in which he describes his political conversion to the Parliamentarian cause. ODNB
10 Lord Broghill defeats an Irish relief force marching for Clonmel at Macroom in County Cork. CIR
  Parliament passes the Adultery Act: the death penalty imposed for adultery, incest and fornication (never applied in practice). AOI
11 Carrigadrohid Castle near Macroom surrenders to Broghill after he hangs the Bishop of Ross in view of the garrison. CIR
13(?) General-at-Sea Edward Popham sails with a squadron of eight ships to reinforce Blake at Lisbon. Popham's orders from the Council of State authorise the generals to attack French ships and also to attack Portuguese trade if the Portuguese obstruct the Commonwealth by continuing to assist Prince Rupert. RN2
15 Parliament orders the raising of two regiments of foot and one of horse in western England as a safeguard against possible Royalist insurrections. Colonel Barkstead's regiment guarding Westminster to be increased to 2,000 men. Royalist lands to be sold to finance these measures. HCP1
16 Heavy siege artillery breaches the walls of Clonmel. CIR
17 Cromwell's assault on Clonmel repulsed with severe losses. Hugh O'Neill's garrison evacuates the town under cover of night. CIR
18 The Mayor of Clonmel surrenders to Cromwell. CIR
  Montrose arrives in Edinburgh as a prisoner. RCRS
  The Scottish Parliament resolves to insist that Charles abandons the Irish treaty, outlaws the Catholic faith and signs the Covenant immediately. HCP1
20 Bishop MacMahon assembles 4,000 foot and 600 horse of the Ulster Confederate army at Loughgall in County Armagh and advances into northern Ulster. CIR
21 General-at-Sea Robert Blake seizes ten English merchant ships chartered to an outbound Portuguese fleet sailing for Brazil. When Blake undertakes to release the Portuguese ships only when King John hands over Prince Rupert's ships, the King orders the arrest of all English subjects in Lisbon who are known to be sympathetic to the Commonwealth and forbids Blake from entering the Tagus or to collect water from the mainland. CWS, PRA
21 The Marquis of Montrose hanged in Edinburgh. RCRS
26 Popham's squadron joins Blake's fleet. HCP1
27 Murder of Anthony Ascham, the Commonwealth's representative in Madrid, by six English Royalists. HCP1
  Cromwell sets sail from Youghal for England, leaving Henry Ireton in command of the army in Ireland. CIR
29 Execution of Montrose's followers, including Sir John Hurry. RCRS
  Cromwell lands at Bristol. CIR
31 Parliament votes a grant of land to Cromwell in recognition of his services. HCJ
  (End of May) English forces under Colonel Reynolds besiege Tecroghan Castle near Trim, but are weakened when Colonel Hewson is forced to return to Dublin with his regiment to deal with tory raids. CIR


1 Cromwell arrives in London to a warm reception from MPs and members of the Council of State. Fairfax congratulates him on his victories in Ireland. Source: HCP1
2 Charles II sets sail for Scotland without having agreed to the Covenanters' new demands. HCP1
  Bishop MacMahon's Confederates skirmish with Sir Charles Coote's forces at Lifford in County Donegal. Heavily outnumbered, Coote retreats towards Londonderry. CIR
4 The Scottish Parliament banishes sixteen leading Royalists and Engagers from Scotland. HCP1
  Cromwell receives the official thanks of Parliament for his Irish campaign. HCP1
5 General-at-Sea Robert Blake sends an ultimatum to King John of Portugal demanding that Prince Rupert's ships be handed over to Commonwealth forces. CWS
11 Charles yields to the Covenanters' additional demands and signs the Treaty of Heligoland. HCP1
  Cromwell reports to Parliament on the situation in Ireland. HCP1
  King John of Portugal rejects Blake's ultimatum. CWS
12 Parliament votes that Fairfax and Cromwell should be sent north to counter the threat of a Scottish invasion. HCP1
13 Marchamont Nedham publishes the first issue of Mercurius Politicus, Parliament's answer to scurrilous Royalist journals. HCP1
18 Reinforced by regiments of the New Model Army, Sir Charles Coote advances to attack the Ulster Confederates. CIR
  The Marquis of Clanricarde and Earl of Castlehaven muster 4,000 Confederates at Tyrrelspass in Westmeath and prepare to relieve the siege of Tecroghan. CIR
19 Most of the relief force advancing to Tecroghan driven back by Colonel Reynolds; a few hundred Irish succeed in reinforcing the garrison. CIR
20 The Council of State resolves to mount a pre-emptive invasion of Scotland. HCP1
21 Battle of Scarriffhollis: Sir Charles Coote defeats the last Confederate field army, under the command of Heber MacMohan, Bishop of Clogher. TCW
  Lieutenant-General David Leslie requests the Scottish Parliament that new levies be raised to reinforce depleted regiments of the Army of the Covenant. D1650
  Commissioners appointed by the Scottish Parliament to purge all former Engagers from the army and to counter potential Royalist support among the new levies. HCP1, D1650
  The Westminster Parliament commissions Thomas Harrison commander of forces left in England during the invasion of Scotland. HCJ
22 Fairfax objects to the plans for an invasion of Scotland and refuses to lead an invading army. HCP1
23 Charles II arrives at Speymouth in Scotland and signs the Covenant before disembarking. RCRS
  The Earl of Leven tenders his resignation as Lord General of the Scottish army on the grounds of age and infirmity, but the government refuses to accept it. D1650
  Clanricarde and Castlehaven abandon their attempts to relieve the siege of Tecroghan. CIR
24 A committee comprising Cromwell, St John, Whitelocke, Lambert and Harrison tries to persuade Fairfax to accept command of the army for Scotland, but is unsuccessful. HCP1
25 The Scottish Parliament orders the raising of levies to strengthen the Army of the Covenant. RCRS
  Sir Robert Talbot and Lady Fitzgerald surrender Tecroghan Castle to Colonel Reynolds. HCP2, CIR
26 Sir Thomas Fairfax resigns as commander-in-chief of the Commonwealth army. Oliver Cromwell appointed in his place. HCP1
27 Charles at Aberdeen. HCP1
28 Cromwell marches for Scotland with 16,000 men. Charles Fleetwood appointed Lieutenant-General, John Lambert appointed Major-General. HCP1
  Parliament passes an act imposing fines for profane swearing. AOI
  (End of June) Under increasing pressure from the Commonwealth and from his own advisers, King John of Portugal offers the use of the Portuguese navy to shield Prince Rupert's escape from Lisbon. PRA


2 Parliament confirms the Council of State's nomination of Henry Ireton to continue as Lord-Deputy of Ireland. Two commissioners appointed to assist him: Edmund Ludlow and John Jones. Ludlow also appointed Lieutenant-General of the army in Ireland. Sources: HCP1, HCJ
3 The Scottish Parliament orders the raising of more levies. RCRS
4 The Scottish Parliament unanimously ratifies the treaty with Charles. RCRS
6 Charles arrives at the palace at Falkland where he is informed that the Scottish Parliament has ordered the banishment of all but nine of his followers. HCP1
10 Cromwell reaches Newcastle. TCG
11 Parliament passes a new Militia Act. Property holders to contribute proportionately to defence costs. Lords-lieutenant of counties to be replaced by commissioners appointed by Parliament or the Council of State. AOI
13 Lord Inchiquin's forces in County Kerry defeated by Colonel Robert Phayre's cavalry. CIR
15 The Marquis of Ormond appoints Hugh Dubh O'Neill governor of Limerick. HCP2
19 Cromwell musters his troops at Berwick-on-Tweed. Messengers sent into Scotland to proclaim the righteousness of the Parliamentarian cause. ATKA, HCP1
22 Cromwell crosses the border into Scotland. The Scottish army adopts a defensive posture. RCRS
24 Surrender of Carlow Castle to Sir Hardress Waller. TCW, HCP2
26 Prince Rupert's fleet, supported by Portuguese and French ships, attempts to escape from the River Tagus. HCP1, PRA
  Cromwell's forces occupy Dunbar. CG
28 Cromwell's army at Musselburgh near Edinburgh. RCRS
29 Cromwell advances towards the defensive lines around Edinburgh but cannot draw the Scots out into the open. HCP1, D1650
  Charles II joins the Earl of Eglinton at Leith near Edinburgh. He hopes to win the support of Scottish nobles and army officers against the Kirk Party. HCP1
  Commonwealth warships bombard Leith. CG
  After extensive manoeuvres at the mouth of the River Tagus, Prince Rupert's fleet is forced back into Lisbon harbour under attack by Blake. PRA
30 Unable to penetrate the Scottish defences, Cromwell begins a withdrawal to Musselburgh. Scottish lancers attack the English rearguard. Major-General Lambert wounded and briefly taken prisoner. HCP1, D1650
  A Committee of War dominated by Archibald Johnston of Wariston appointed to advise senior Scottish officers on strategy and tactics. RCRS
31 Scottish lancers under Colonel Montgomery attack Cromwell's camp at Musselburgh. HCP1, D1650
  [End of July] General Ireton marches to reinforce the siege of Waterford. CIR
  [End of July] Sir Charles Coote and Colonel Venables bring heavy artillery to besiege Charlemont Fort in Ulster. CIR


2 At the urging of the Committee of Estates, Charles withdraws across the Firth of Forth to Dunfermline. Source: HCP1
3 Alarmed at Charles' personal popularity with the Scottish army, Covenanter leaders order a purge of Engagers and "Malignants". Eighty officers dismissed. HCP1
  Cromwell appeals to the Scottish Kirk, arguing that Charles is not a fitting king for a godly people. HCP1
6 Cromwell withdraws to Dunbar to keep in contact with his supply fleet. HCP1
  The Catholic clergy of Ireland hold a synod at Jamestown in County Leitrim. The Marquis of Ormond is invited to send a representative but not to attend in person. CIR
  Thomas Preston surrenders Waterford to Henry Ireton. CIR
8 Sir Charles Coote and Colonel Venables mount a major assault on Charlemont Fort in Ulster. The attack is repulsed with up to 800 casualties, but the defenders are left exhausted and short of ammunition. CIR
9 Parliament passes the Blasphemy Act, aimed at suppressing radical religious sects. AOI
10 In response to Cromwell's appeal, the Scottish Kirk urges Charles to sign a Declaration disavowing his parents' religion and affirming his own fidelity to the Covenant. Charles refuses to sign. HCP1
  The Irish clergy reject the authority of the Marquis of Ormond and urge him to appoint the Marquis of Clanricarde to serve as Lord-Deputy. CIR
11 Cromwell returns to Musselburgh. HCP1
12 In an attempt to bring Leslie to battle, Cromwell sets out to march around Edinburgh to Queensferry. English control of the sea would also enable him to operate on both sides of the Forth. HCP1
  Duncannon Fort near Waterford surrenders to Ireton. CIR
13 Commissioners of the Kirk resolve that until Charles has signed the Declaration, they are not bound to defend his cause. RCRS
  The Irish clergy write to Ormond ordering him to leave Ireland. CIR
  Cromwell occupies Braid Hill, to the south of Edinburgh, where he waits to see the outcome of the dispute over the Kirk's Declaration. HCP1
14 Sir Phelim O'Neill surrenders Charlemont Fort in Ulster to Sir Charles Coote. HCP2, CIR
16 Rather than lose the support of the Covenanters, Charles signs the Kirk's Declaration. He then leaves Dunfermline for Perth. RCRS, HCP1
  Further extensive purge of the Scottish army ordered by the Kirk Party. Up to 3,000 officers and men dismissed. RCRS
  General Ireton divides his army, sending Sir Hardress Waller against Limerick while he marches for Athlone via County Wicklow. CIR
18 Cromwell occupies Colinton House trying to provoke a battle with Leslie. HCP1
20 Interview between Major-General Lambert and Colonel Strachan of the Covenanters. English officers hope for a split in the Scottish leadership, but it comes to nothing. HCP1
21 Leslie occupies a strong position at Corstorphine, blocking the approach to Queensferry. HCP1
24 Cromwell storms and captures Red Hall, a fortified house commanding the crossing of the Water of Leith. HCP1
26 The Marquis of Ormond meets representatives of the Irish clergy at Loughrea in County Galway. He refuses to surrender his offices or leave Ireland without the King's permission. CIR
28 Cromwell's attempt to reach Queensferry finally halted at the village of Gogar. The English army withdraws to Musselburgh where 500 soldiers sick with dysentery are shipped out. D1650, CG
31 Cromwell withdraws to Haddington. HCP1
  The Marquis of Ormond announces that he is seeking the King's permission to leave Ireland. HCP2


1 Cromwell falls back to Dunbar. David Leslie occupies Doon Hill, overlooking the English position. Source: HCP1
2 David Leslie moves his forces down from Doon Hill. HCP1
3 Battle of Dunbar. Cromwell routs the Scots. Leslie retreats to Stirling; the Committee of Estates abandons Edinburgh for Stirling. HCP1
  General-at-Sea Popham returns to England with eight ships from the Commonwealth fleet, leaving Blake with nine ships to watch Prince Rupert at Lisbon. HCP1, PRA
4 Major-General Lambert occupies the city of Edinburgh with seven regiments of horse and one of foot. Sir Walter Dundas refuses to surrender Edinburgh Castle. CG
5 The Committee of Estates orders Colonels Strachan and Ker to form their regiments into a Western Association and to raise new levies in south-western Scotland. RCRS
7 Supported by Portuguese and French warships, Prince Rupert again attempts to escape from the River Tagus. After an exchange of fire with Blake's fleet, Rupert is forced back into port. HCP1
  Cromwell and the main body of the English army occupies Edinburgh. CG
9 Sir Hardress Waller summons Limerick. HCP2
10 Parliament commissions the creation of the Dunbar Medal, to be awarded to all soldiers who took part in Cromwell's victory. HCP2
14 General-at-Sea Robert Blake captures the Portuguese Brazil fleet on its return voyage to Lisbon. The loss of the Brazil fleet finally persuades King John to insist that Prince Rupert should leave Portuguese waters. HCP1, CWS
  Cromwell marches for Stirling, leaving Colonel Lilburne with four regiments to guard Edinburgh. HCP1, CG
15 Catholic bishops issue a proclamation threatening to excommunicate any Catholic who continues to support Ormond. CIR
16 Henry Ireton joins Sir Charles Coote before Athlone. HCP2
17 Cromwell advances to within one mile of Stirling, but Leslie's position is unassailable. RCRS
19 Cromwell withdraws to Edinburgh. HCP1
21 Archibald Johnston of Wariston denounces the House of Stuart and blames all Scotland's misfortunes on the late King's opposition to the reformation of the church. HCP1
24 Charles promises the Marquis of Argyll a dukedom in exchange for his support against the Kirk Party. RCRS
  Charles involved with the Duke of Hamilton and Marquis of Huntly in a plot to lead an uprising of Royalists and Engagers against the Covenanters. RCRS
27 Parliament passes the Toleration Act: compulsory attendance at parish churches abolished, the anti-Catholic Recusancy Acts repealed. HCP2, AOI
  Blake returns to Cadiz to replenish supplies and arrange for the disposal of his prizes. CWS
30 Ireton leaves Sir Charles Coote at Athlone and marches to join Sir Hardress Waller at Limerick. CIR


  [Early October] The Marquis of Clanricarde gathers an army of 3,000 men and crosses the River Shannon into English-held territory in Leinster, capturing a number of garrisons. Source: CIR
1 The Ranter Abiezer Coppe examined by a parliamentary committee for alleged blasphemy. Feigning madness, be is returned to Newgate gaol and not brought to trial. ODNB
2 Charles II reveals details of the plot against the Covenanters to Lords Wimot and Buckingham. They persuade him to abandon it. Charles tries to cancel the rising. Source: RCRS
  The Western Association issues a Remonstrance criticising Charles for his ungodliness and calling for Scottish unity. RCRS
3 Parliament passes an Act prohibiting trade with the Royalist colonies Virginia, Bermuda, Barbados and Antigua. General-at-Sea Ayscue to be sent to recover Barbados for the Commonwealth. AOI, HCP1
  The Committee of Estates orders another purge of Charles' household and attendants; Charles appeals to the Estates to modify the order. HCP1
4 "The Start": The Committee of Estates insists on purging Charles' household. The King rides furiously from Perth intending to resurrect the uprising against the Kirk Party. Colonel Montgomery sent in pursuit. HCP1
5 Colonel Montgomery finds Charles taking refuge in a shepherd's hut in the mountains. The King agrees to accompany him back to Perth. HCP1
6 General Ireton joins Sir Hardress Waller at Limerick. CIR
10 First meeting of the Committee of Estates to be held in the King's presence. Charles dismisses the courtiers implicated in the recent plot and orders his supporters in the Highlands to disarm. HCP1
11-13 Cromwell visits Glasgow and continues his attempts to reach an understanding with the Scottish clergy. HCP1
12 Prince Rupert escapes from Lisbon harbour with six ships while Blake's fleet is replenishing at Cadiz. HCP1
13 The Marquis of Ormond receives the King's permission to leave Ireland. HCP2
14 Prince Rupert captures two English merchantmen in the Atlantic; the Second Charles from the Royalist squadron sets off in pursuit of a third merchantman. PRA
17 A second Remonstrance issued from Dumfries critical of the King's malignancy and of the Committee of Estates for supporting him. Remonstrant officers of the Western Association refuse to fight against the English until the King has proved himself worthy of their support. RCRS
18 ? Prince Rupert's squadron passes through the Straits of Gibraltar and into the Mediterranean. PRA
19 Ireton abandons the siege of Limerick and disperses his forces into winter quarters. CIR
  Captain Marshall of the Second Charles almost captured by Blake's ships as he approaches the Straits of Gibraltar. The Jules, a 36-gun French ship in company with Marshall is taken by Blake, who returns to Cadiz with his prize. Marshall passes through the Straits and takes an English prize, the William and John. PRA, CWS
21 Royalist Sir David Ogilvy's cavalry attacks a Covenanter regiment at Newtyle in the Highlands. RCRS
  Reinforcements from Wexford and Kilkenny join Colonel Axtell at Roscrea in County Tipperary. Axtell advances against the Marquis of Clanricarde's army. CIR
  Prince Rupert at Malaga, where his attempt to capture English merchantmen in the harbour is thwarted when they are warned by disaffected members of the Royalist squadron. PRA
23 The Marquis of Ormond writes to the Confederate commissioners urging them to make the Catholic clergy rescind the edict of excommunication issued against Ormond's supporters (15 September). CIR
24 General Leslie at Perth with 3,000 cavalry on his way to subdue the Royalist insurgents in the Highlands. RCRS
  Prince Rupert at Velez-Malaga where he sends in a fireship to burn two English merchantmen when the Spanish governor refuses to hand them over to him. PRA, CWS
25 Parliament resolves that all proceedings in courts of law are to be conducted in English. A committee chaired by Henry Marten is appointed to discuss reform of the law. HCJ, TRP
  Colonel Axtell defeats the Marquis of Clanricarde's forces at Meelick Island on the River Shannon. Axtell is later court-martialled for killing prisoners taken at Meelick after promise of quarter. CIR, ODNB
26 Charles and the Committee of Estates issue an Act of Pardon, offering indemnity to the Highland insurgents. HCP1
  Prince Rupert destroys three English merchant ships in Motril harbour where he comes under fire from the Spanish defences. PRA, CWS
27 Death of Prince William of Orange. Hopes raised for an alliance between the English Commonwealth and the Dutch republic. HCP1
30 Blake at Malaga in pursuit of Prince Rupert. HCP1
31 Parliament passes an Act increasing customs duties by 15 per cent. The extra revenue to be used to pay for warships to convoy merchant vessels following losses to privateers. HCP1, AOI
  (End of October) Prince Rupert captures a large merchantman, the Marmaduke, off the coast of north Africa. The Royalist squadron now fragmented in pursuit of different prizes. PRA


3 Blake's fleet captures the Henry from Prince Rupert's squadron. Other Royalist ships escape to Cartagena. Source: PRA
4 Leaders of the insurgents in Scotland accept Charles' Act of Indemnity. Sir David Ogilvy agrees to disband his men after a meeting with Leslie at Strathbogie. RCRS
  The crew of the Black Prince beach and burn their ship near Cartagena to avoid capture by Blake's fleet. PRA
  Prince Rupert and Prince Maurice arrive with three ships at Formentera in the Balearic Islands hoping to rendezvous with the rest of the Royalist squadron. PRA
5 General-at-Sea Robert Blake sails into Cartagena harbour and anchors near the four Royalist ships. Blake warned that the Royalist ships are under the protection of the King of Spain. PRA
6 The Royalist ships at Cartagena attempt to escape from Blake under cover of darkness but are caught in a sudden squall, run aground and wrecked. PRA, CWS
9 Blake sails from Cartagena in pursuit of the three remaining ships in Prince Rupert's squadron. PRA
14 The Committee of Estates and the Commission of the Kirk begins debating the western Remonstrance. RCRS
15 The Marquis of Ormond convenes a meeting of the Confederate General Assembly at Loughrea in County Galway. CIR
19 Ormond insists that the delegates to the Confederate Assembly re-affirm their loyalty to the King before he appoints anyone to govern Ireland in his place. CIR
22 Parliament passes an act for holding legal proceedings in English rather than Latin. PP
23 King Philip of Spain orders the official recognition of the Commonwealth. HCP1
25 Blake ordered to return to England with most of his ships. Vice-Admiral William Penn appointed to continue the pursuit of Rupert. ODNB
  Prince Maurice arrives at Toulon with the Swallow and Marmaduke. Prince Rupert at Messina in Sicily with the Constant Reformation, having become separated from Maurice in a storm. PRA
  The Committee of Estates and the Commission of the Kirk reject the western Remonstrance. RCRS
26 The Scottish Parliament meets at Perth. Colonel Montgomery ordered to take over command of the Western Association from Colonel Ker. HCP1
27 Cromwell and Lambert lead eight cavalry regiments from Edinburgh against the Western Association. CW
  Parliament orders the dismissal of clergymen who refuse to take the Oath of Engagement. HCP2
30 Vice-Admiral Penn sails from Portsmouth in the Centurion and seven other ships with orders to pursue Prince Rupert and authority to intercept Portuguese treasure ships. ODNB


1 Major-General Lambert defeats Colonel Ker and the Western Association army at Hamilton. Source: RCRS
2 Colonel Strachan defects to the English. ODNB
6 The Marquis of Ormond names the Marquis of Clanricarde lord-deputy of Ireland in his place. CIR
11 Ormond leaves Ireland for France. TCW
  Captain Hall appointed commander of a squadron to convoy English merchant ships trading in the Mediterranean. HCP1
12 Heavy siege guns brought up from England open fire on Edinburgh Castle. HCP1
13 German mercenary Captain Augustine Hoffman breaks through the English siege lines to re-supply the garrison in Edinburgh Castle. ATKA
14 The Commission of the Kirk resolves to relax the qualifications for service in the Scottish army, opening the way for the re-admission of Royalists and Engagers. RCRS
  (Mid-December) Prince Rupert rejoins Prince Maurice at Toulon. PRA
20 The Scottish Parliament commissions officers for a new army to be levied in the north; many Royalists and Engagers appointed. RCRS
22 The Kirk holds a national Day of Fasting and Humiliation in preparation for the coronation of King Charles. HCP1
23 The Confederate General Assembly meeting at Loughrea in County Galway proclaims its allegiance to Charles II and to the Marquis of Clanricarde as his deputy. CIR
24 Sir Walter Dundas surrenders Edinburgh Castle to Cromwell. RCRS
26 Charles undergoes a day of public repentance of his sins. HCP1
  The Spanish ambassador Alonso de Cardenas presents his credentials in London. HCP1
27 The Council of State complains about the continuing observance of Christmas festivities. HCP2


AOI: Acts and Ordinances of the Interregnum C.H. Firth and R.S. Raitt (eds), 1911

ATKA: All the King's Armies, Stuart Reid (Staplehurst 1998)

CIR: Cromwell in Ireland, James Scott Wheeler (New York 1999)

CN: Cromwell's Navy, Bernard Capp (Oxford 1989)

CG: Cromwell's Generals, Maurice Ashley (Oxford 1954)

CW: Civil War, Wars of the Three Kingdoms 1638-60, Trevor Royle (London 2004)

CWS: Cromwell's Wars at Sea, John Barratt (Barnsley 2006)

D1650: Dunbar 1650: Cromwell's most famous victory, Stuart Reid (Osprey 2004)

HCJ: House of Commons Journal

HCP1: History of the Commonwealth and Protectorate vol. i, S.R. Gardiner (London 1903)

HCP2: History of the Commonwealth and Protectorate vol. ii, S.R. Gardiner (London 1903)

ODNB: Oxford Dictionary of National Biography

PP: Pride's Purge, David Underdown (Oxford 1971)

PRA: Prince Rupert, admiral and general-at-sea, Frank Kitson (London 1998)

RCRS: Revolution and Counter-Revolution in Scotland 1644-1651, David Stevenson (Newton Abbott 1977)

RN2: The Royal Navy: a history from the earliest times to the present, vol.ii Sir William Laird Clowes (London 1898)

TCG: The Cromwellian Gazetteer, Peter Gaunt (Stroud 1987)

TCW: The Civil Wars, a military history of England, Scotland & Ireland 1638-60, Kenyon and Ohlmeyer eds) (Oxford 1998)

TRP: The Rump Parliament, Blair Worden (Cambridge 1974)

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