• Commonwealth and Restoration

    Setting the Scene
    -1640 The Puritans (Roundheads) and the king’s followers (Cavaliers) went to war against each other.
    -1649 Execution of King Charles I. Oliver Cromwell Became the leader of the Commonwealth
    -1658 Death of Oliver Cromwell
    -1660 Parliament invited Charles I’s son to return from France. He was made king as Charles II.
    -1685 Death of Charles II, his brother King James II became king
    -1688 Glorious or Blood Revolution, and no Catholic monarch has reigned since then
    It was also time of war in Europe, the War of the Spain Succession lasting from 1701 until Treaty of Utrecht in 1713. The United Kingdom was finally united when the Union of the Parliaments of England and Scotland took place in 1707.
    The main concern of the time was to avoid another revolution. The spirit of the Restoration was one of the reason; society did not want to see again the king of problems of the first half of the century.
    1662-3 The Royal Society was begun
    1694 another important institution, the Bank of England , was begun
    The main philosophical text behind the thinking of the century was Leviathan by Thomas Hobbes,written in  exile in France in 1651.
    It was also a time of war in Europe, the war of the Spanish Succession lasting from 1701 until the Treaty of Utrecht in 1713 The United Kingdom was finally untied when the Union of the Parliaments of England and Scotland took place in 1707.
    Poetry, Politics and John Milton
    The period between the execution of King Charles I in 1649 and the Restoration of the monarchy with his son Charles II in 1660 is called the Commonwealth. Oliver Cromwell, leader of the Roundheads, was named Lord Protector oh the nation, One of the main texts of the Commonwealth is poem by Andrew Marvell, ‘An Horatian Ode upon Cromwell’s Return from Ireland’(1650), it was called ‘the greatest political poem in English’
    John Bunyan
    The Pilgrim's Progress published in 1678, and second part in 1684                    
                                        There’s no discouragement
                                        Shall make him once relent
                                        His first avowed intent
                                        To be a pilgrim.
    Augustans and Satires
    Set against John Bunyan religious kind of writing is the poetry of John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester, whom his wife became a kind of symbol of the Restoration.
    The long satirical poem Hudibras by Samuel Butler, published in three parts between 1663 and 1678, was one of the such poems.
    John Dryden was a master of satire in poetry after the Restoration
    Plots, true or false , are necessary things,
    To raise up commonwealths and ruin kings   
    Restoration Drama
    -Dryden wrote more then twenty plays, and was especially successful in the new genre of tragicomedy, of which the best-known example is Marriage-a-la-Mode(1672)
    -His famous tragedy is All for Love(1678)
    -After the Restoration, drama and theater were quite different from
    -What they had been during the Renaissance.
    -There were now only two public licensed theatres.
    Tragedy and Serious Drama
    -Both Dryden and his rival Shadwell wrote new version of the plays of Shakespeare.
    -Dryden wrote a successful version of the Tempest (1667) and another of Troilus and Cressida (1679)
    -Thomas Otway,he died in the age of 33. His famous play was Venice Preserv’d (1682)