Thursday, December 16, 2010

Lord Protector

'He started at first, rousing himself with the sensation of one who awakes in a place unknown to him; but the localities instantly forced themselves on his recollection. The lamp burning dimly in the socket, the wood fire almost extinguished in its own white embers, the gloomy picture over the chimney-piece, the sealed packet on the table--all reminded him of the events of yesterday, and his deliberations of the succeeding night. "There is no help for it," he said; "it must be Cromwell or anarchy. And probably the sense that his title, as head of the Executive Government, is derived merely from popular consent, may check the too natural proneness of power to render itself arbitrary. If he govern by Parliaments, and with regard to the privileges of the subject, wherefore not Oliver as well as Charles? But I must take measures for having this conveyed safely to the hands of this future sovereign prince. It will be well to take the first word of influence with him, since there must be many who will not hesitate to recommend counsels more violent and precipitate."...'

The text above is from Walter Scott's "Woodstock", which is set in 1651; the English Civil War.  Oliver Cromwell figures prominently in this novel.  Cromwell became Lord Protector of England, Scotland and Ireland on December 16, 1653.

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