Historical Events of the Restoration Period

  • Political Breakdown

    Political Breakdown
    From 1625 - 40, the British parliament began to lose faith in the royal monarchy. After the disastrous rule of King James, which lasted from 1603 to 1625, Charles I gained power. He promptly tired of the political disagreements that had been consuming parliament, and so he decided to rule without them for the next eleven years. From this point onward, Charles became known as a tyrannical king.
  • Charles I's Rule

    Charles I's Rule
    By this time, Charles I was well-known to be a king who actively suppressed the rights of the people. He levied taxes without the consent of the people, interfered with the actions of the church, and ruled with autocratic power.
  • English Civil War

    English Civil War
    Charles I's Army is pitted against that of Oliver Cromwell in the First English Civil War. On this date, the fighting officially started on a small scale. Fighting did not end until the Battle of Worcester in 1646, in which King Charles was defeated.
  • Second English Civil War

    Second English Civil War
    After continued disputes with parliament, Charles I fleed to Scotland and summoned an army, with which he invaded England and started yet another Civil War. However, he was again defeated by the forces of Oliver Cromwell.
  • Execution of Charles I

    Execution of Charles I
    King Charles I was convicted of high treason by a parliamentary court, and was decapitated. All who remained of the 59 men who signed his death warrant would be persecuted and killed during the reign of Charles II eleven years later.
  • Interregnum Period & Oliver Cromwell

    Interregnum Period & Oliver Cromwell
    Oliver Cromwell, the commander of the Parliamentarians during the Second English Civil War, is made Lord Protector of Britain. He establishes what came to be known as the Commonwealth of England. Oliver Cromwell is remembered as one of the most noble and honorable leaders in British History. He was a strong, assertive leader on the battlefield and very successful with foreign policy. As a Puritan, he established a very socially conservative society.
  • Really Cool Guy, Mediocre King

    Really Cool Guy, Mediocre King
    On this day, Charles II took the throne. He was a very likeable man, but he had no particular political skills. He was known as the "Merry Monarch" because he loved fun, games, and smut. He was well-known for frequent debauchery, and he fathered 13 children with various mistresses. The arts and literature of the Restoration period were heavily influenced by the shenanigans of Charles II.
  • Desecration of Cromwell's remains

    Desecration of Cromwell's remains
    Oliver Cromwell's remains were dug up and publicly torn apart during a protest. This was a significant event because it represented the popular backlash against a Puritan-dominated culture. It was as though all of a sudden, the people had forgotten about the disastrous reign of Charles I - Barely a decade after his death, his son was now the new king.
  • Second Anglo-Dutch War

    Second Anglo-Dutch War
    England entered a second naval war with the Dutch as a result of a trade dispute between the two competing powers. The war was a failure for the British navy, and the blame for the defeat was placed largely on the king. The commander of the British Navy repeatedly complained that the king's inability to attend to important affairs of war was a major contributing factor in England's defeat.
  • Death of Charles II/Coronation of King James II

    Death of Charles II/Coronation of King James II
    After the death of Charles II, his brother James was made king. However, his reign only lasted until 1688. He was the last Roman Catholic king to rule England.
  • Glorious Revolution and Bill of Rights - End of Restoration Period

    Glorious Revolution and Bill of Rights - End of Restoration Period
    The English Bill of Rights was signed, which gave individuals a vast increase in liberties. Additionally, the Catholic church lost a lot of power in England. King James II lived out the remainder of his days in France, and it was now illegal for a Catholic to become king of England. The Glorious Revolution - A relatively peaceful transfer of power - resulted in the replacement of King James II with William and Mary, thus marking the end of the Restoration Period.