The year is 1642 and the bond that has exisisted between the King and his Parliament since the signing of the Magna Carta in 1215 has been shattered. War has now decended upon the realm with brother fighting brother, fathers fighting sons, nephews fighting uncles and the King fighting Parliament. The future looks grim and uncertain for the people of the British isles as their countries have decended into the chaos of Civil War. However one thing is certain, the victor will either be King Charles Stewart and his Royalist supporters or the men of Parliament with their supporters.
Parliament and the country has suffered for too long under the tyrannical reign on King Charles. He has not only married a French Catholic but he has also dissolved parliament out of his own frustration, caused the Scots to rebel two years earlier in 1640 and worst of all, in January of this year he marched with 400 soldiers into our sacred House of Commons and demended the arrest of five of our members charged with treason. We now have little choice but to use military force in order to persuade Charles to listen to and respect the will of the common people through Parliament. He will not be an easy enemy to fight. The King holds support in much of the north, Wales, the west-country and Cornwall. However we hold London, the midlands and much of the east and I am confident of a swift victory for Parliament! May the Lord God bless us with victory and may he give the King enough sense to listen in the coming months, before too many of our fellow countrymen are killed.
The origins of the English Civil war was born out of a series of disputes between King Charles I and his Parliament dating back to his coronation in 1625. Parliament was first concerned about Charles's marriage to the French Catholic princess Henrietta-Marie de Bourbon meaning that any heir could rule as a Catholic. Charles had also become infuriated with Parliament after they had refused him tax to pay for Charles's foreign policy ambitions, especially his military ambitions to sent English armies to the 30 years war. The initial spark for civil war came in 1637 when Scotland effectively rebelled in what became known as the Bishops War. Charles was forced to accept Scotland's rights to keep their religious traditions only after his army was defeated by the Covenanters at the battle of Newburn and Newcastle was captured in 1640. Parliament and the King eventually came to blows in January 1642 when Carles attempted to arrest five members of parliament on the charge of treason. When Charles failed he fled with his supporters and family to Oxford and between January and August of that year the towns and communities of England announced who they supported, with much of the west, Wales and the north declaring loyalty to the King. The first pitched battle was at Edgehill in October 1642 which resulted in both sides claiming a victory.
The war would drag on untill 1651 claiming nearly one million lives, many of those dying from disease, famine and particularly in Ireland from religious genocide. On the 30th January 1649 King Charles I was lead out from Whitehall Palace onto a scaffold. He was then beheaded for high treason against the realm and people. His son (the future Charles II) would continue the war untill 1651 untill he was defeated at Worcester and fled to France. Charles II returned to London in 1660 with popular support. He was crowned in May 1661 and sentenced to death the surviving men who had voted to execute his father. However never again in British history would a monarch dare to confront Parliament, the face of Britain would be changed for ever.
It is now up to you to match Parliaments victory and lead the roundheads to victory over the Royalists and King Charles.