How different was the Cromwell of the Protectorate from the Cromwell of the Civil Wars?

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From the English Civil Wars to the end of Cromwell’s Protectorate in 1658, the character of Cromwell was influenced by a number of factors. It is through his early career, that the blend of intense Puritanism and a political demagoguery nature created the authoritative, bold and disciplined Cromwell that was present during the Protectorate years. It is understandable to see how the choices in his life and social events shaped his character into becoming the first and only proletariat to become Lord Protector over England. The Historian Morill limns that ‘the first forty of his fifty-eight years, Oliver Cromwell lived in obscurity’1 only demonstrates the tremendous change Cromwell underwent during his life. However some characteristics …show more content…
own work concludes that it is impossible to define Cromwell as any single previous definition as he carried a characteristic for each description.

The transformation that Cromwell underwent in his career can be explained in his differing policies during the Civil Wars and the years of the Protectorate. When the English Civil War erupted in 1642, Cromwell instantaneously became a significant player in the success of the battles. His natural talent of leadership and his gift of inspirational speeches provided him with the opportunity to perfect his directorship skills that he would demonstrate and employ in his later career as Lord Protector. The Historian Roger Howell identified Cromwell as ‘a leader associated with national vigour, pride and prosperity.’5 Although, there is a clear distinction growth between the inconsequential man present at the turn of the English Civil War to the domineering, authoritative, disciplinary man who emerged during the Protectorate years, the popular patriotic, reformist, religiously radical nature of Cromwell remained constant from the beginning of the Civil Wars to his death in 1658.

The progression of Cromwell character can also be examined in his change of perspective. During the civil war, Cromwell’s sole goal was to

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