Killers of the King

Killers of the King

The Men Who Dared to Execute Charles I

Book - 2014
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Spencer profiles the Parliamentarians who tried, convicted, and executed Charles I after his Loyalist army was defeated in the English Civil War 1642-44. He recounts what happened to the major players who signed Charles I's death warrant or attended his trial, examining how their actions influenced 17th century England. Copious chapter notes and a bibliography are included. Annotation ©2016 Ringgold, Inc., Portland, OR (

McMillan Palgrave
A unique chronicle of Stuart England--the dramatic stories and fascinating fates of the men who signed Charles I’s death warrant.

On August 18, 1648, with no relief from the siege in sight, the royalist garrison holding Colchester Castle surrendered and Oliver Cromwell's army firmly ended the rule of Charles I of England. To send a clear message to the fallen monarch, the rebels executed four of the senior officers captured at the castle. Yet still, the king refused to accept he had lost the war. As France and other allies mobilized in support of Charles, a tribunal was hastily gathered and a death sentence was passed. On January 30, 1649, the King of England was executed. This is the account of the fifty-nine regicides, the men who signed Charles I's death warrant.

Recounting a little-known corner of British history, Charles Spencer explores what happened when the Restoration arrived. From George Downing, the chief plotter, to Richard Ingoldsby, who claimed he was forced to sign his name by his cousin Oliver Cromwell, and from those who returned to the monarchist cause and betrayed their fellow regicides to those that fled the country in an attempt to escape their punishment, Spencer examines the long-lasting, far-reaching consequences not only for those who signed the warrant, but also for those who were present at the trial and for England itself.

A powerful tale of revenge from the dark heart of England's past, and a unique contribution to seventeenth-century history, Killers of the King tells the incredible story of the men who dared to assassinate a monarch.

& Taylor

A unique contribution to 17th-century British history examines the lives of the 59 men who signed Charles I's death warrant and the far-reaching consequences for them as well as for those who were present at the trial and for England itself.

Publisher: New York : Bloomsbury, 2014
New York : Bloomsbury, 2014
Edition: First U.S. edition
ISBN: 9781620409121
Branch Call Number: 941.06 SPE 2014
Characteristics: 339 pages : illustrations (some color) ; 25 cm


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May 09, 2016

And did Charles II give the "proctors" a fair trial?

Did any English monarch ever give a victim a fair trial?

Right up to last 200y or so, English monarchs were just like murderous warlords.

(and I am not quoting from Donald Trump!)

Jan 26, 2016

From the brother of Princess Diana comes this gruesome tale of what happened when the men who signed Charles I's death warrant - all 59 of them - had the tables turned on them when the British monarchy was restored after an 11 year experiment with a republic form of government. Most were hanged, drawn and quartered, others had their fortunes forfeited, while the rest were forced to flee to places as far as Switzerland and even colonial America. Charles Spencer pulls together one of the most fascinating and untold stories of the Middle Ages and presents it in a form that can be absorbed by the masses. One thing for certain is that the doomed king never got the benefit of a fair trial - the "jury" was more a posse of proctors who weren't interested in Charles' protestations of innocence or executive immunity.


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