In Our Time – The Interregnum

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The Interregnum is the name given by historians to the period between the execution of Charles I in 1649 and the return of Charles II in 1660. In this May 2021 edition of the outstanding BBC radio programme, In Our Time, Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the unstable rule in England during this period and the impact in Scotland and, infamously, Ireland.

It provides an excellent account of the context of the King’s escape. Specific mention is made soon after 20.00.

Oliver Cromwell (1599 – 1658), later to become the Lord Protector of England, pictured before the Interregnum, dismissing the Long Parliament, on 6 December 1648


  • Clare Jackson of University of Cambridge
  • Miche√°l √ď Siochr√ļ of Trinity College Dublin
  • Laura Stewart of University of York

Reading list

  • Toby Barnard, Cromwellian Ireland: English government and reform in Ireland, 1649-1660 (Clarendon Press, 2000)
  • Caroline Boswell, Disaffection and Everyday Life in Interregnum England (Melton, 2017)
  • Michael J. Braddick (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of the English Revolution (Oxford University Press, 2015)
  • David Brown, Empire and Enterprise: Money, Power and the Adventurers for Irish Land during the British Civil Wars (Manchester University Press, 2020)
  • Aidan Clarke, Prelude to Restoration in Ireland: The End of the Commonwealth, 1659-60 (Cambridge University Press, 1999)
  • Barry Coward, The Cromwellian Protectorate (Manchester University Press, 2002)
  • David Horspool, Cromwell: The Protector (Allen Lane, 2017)
  • Patrick Little (ed.), Oliver Cromwell: New Perspectives (Springer, 2009)
  • Patrick Little (ed.), Ireland in Crisis: War, Politics and Religion, 1641-50 (Manchester University Press, 2020)
  • Kirsteen M. MacKenzie, The Solemn League and Covenant of the Three Kingdoms and the Cromwellian Union, 1643-1663 (Routledge, 2017)
  • Jane A. Mills (ed.), Cromwell’s Legacy (Manchester University Press, 2012)
  • Miche√°l √ď Siochr√ļ, God‚Äôs Executioner: Oliver Cromwell and the Conquest of Ireland (Faber & Faber, 2009)
  • Miche√°l √ď Siochr√ļ and Jane Ohlmeyer (eds), Ireland, 1641: Contexts and Reactions (Manchester University Press, 2013)
  • Scott Spurlock, Cromwell and Scotland: Conquest and Religion, 1650-1660 (John Donald Short Run Press, 2007)
  • Timothy Venning, Cromwellian Foreign Policy (Palgrave Macmillan, 1995)
  • Austin Woolrych, Britain in Revolution, 1625-1660 (Oxford University Press, 2002)

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