List of regicides of Charles I

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The death warrant of King Charles I and the wax seals of the 59 Commissioners.

The regicides of Charles I, under the Indemnity and Oblivion Act, 1660, and subsequent trials, were judged to be the 59 Commissioners (judges) who sat in judgement at the trial of King Charles I of England, Scotland, and Ireland and signed his death warrant in 1649, along with other officials who participated in his trial or execution, and Hugh Peters, an influential republican preacher.

The tribunal was composed of three hereditary peers, four aldermen of the City of London, twenty-two baronets and knights, three generals, thirty-four colonels, the twelve judges of the High Court (who all declined to serve), three serjeants-at-law and representative members of various principalities and the House of Commons.[1]

At the English Restoration in 1660, six Commissioners and four others were found guilty of regicide and executed; one was hanged and nine were hanged, drawn and quartered. In 1662 three more regicides were hanged, drawn and quartered. Some others were pardoned, while a further nineteen served life imprisonment and three already dead at the time of the Restoration had their bodies desecrated.[2]

Of those regicides and associates who escaped Charles II, seven fled to Switzerland, four to the Netherlands, and four to Germany.[citation needed] Three Commissioners, John Dixwell, Edward Whalley and William Goffe, reunited in New Haven, Connecticut, in 1661. All died (or were presumed to have died) of natural causes in the 1670s or 1680s (the last being Dixwell in 1689) and are commemorated by three intersecting major avenues in New Haven (Dixwell Avenue, Whalley Avenue, and Goffe Street 41°18′47″N 72°55′59″W / 41.313094°N 72.932920°W / 41.313094; -72.932920 (intersection)), and by place names in other Connecticut towns.

Commissioners[edit]

In the order in which they signed the death warrant, the Commissioners were:

  Name At the Restoration in 1660 Notes
1. John Bradshaw, President of the Court Dead Posthumous execution: disinterred, hanged at Tyburn and beheaded. The body thrown into a pit and the head placed on a spike at the end of Westminster Hall (the building where the trial of Charles I had taken place).[3]
2. Lord Grey of Groby Dead Died in 1657.
3. Oliver Cromwell Dead Posthumous execution: disinterred, hanged at Tyburn and beheaded. The body thrown into a pit and the head placed on a spike at end the of Westminster Hall (the building where the trial of Charles I had taken place).[3]
4. Edward Whalley Alive Fled to North America to avoid trial. Alive but in poor health in 1674, and probably did not live long afterwards.
5. Sir Michael Livesey Alive Fled to the Netherlands.
6. John Okey Alive Fled to Germany, but was arrested by the English ambassador to the Netherlands, Sir George Downing. He was tried, found guilty and hanged, drawn and quartered in 1662.
7. Sir John Danvers Dead Died in 1655.
8. Sir John Bourchier Alive Too ill to be tried and died soon after the Restoration in 1660.
9. Henry Ireton Dead Posthumous execution: disinterred, hanged at Tyburn and beheaded. The body thrown into a pit and the head placed on a spike at end the of Westminster Hall (the building where the trial of Charles I had taken place).[3]
10. Sir Thomas Mauleverer Dead Died 1655.
11. Sir Hardress Waller Alive Fled to France; later returned and was found guilty. Sentenced to death, but the sentence was commuted to life imprisonment. Died 1666 in prison on Jersey.
12. John Blakiston Dead Died 1649.
13. John Hutchinson Alive Imprisoned in Sandown Castle, Kent where he died on 11 September 1664.
14. William Goffe Alive Fled to America and died in 1679.
15. Thomas Pride Dead Posthumous execution ordered but not carried out.
16. Peter Temple Alive Brought to trial, sentenced to death but sentence was commuted to life imprisonment. He died in the Tower of London in 1663.
17. Thomas Harrison Alive First to be found guilty. Was hanged, drawn and quartered at Charing Cross on Saturday 13 October 1660. He was a leader of the Fifth Monarchists who still posed a threat to the restoration.
18. John Hewson Alive Fled to Amsterdam. Died 1662.
19. Henry Smith Alive Brought to trial, sentenced to death but sentence was commuted to life imprisonment. He was held in the Tower of London until 1664 and was transported to Mont Orgueil castle in Jersey. Died 1668.
20. Sir Peregrine Pelham Dead Died in 1650.
21. Richard Deane Dead Died in 1653. Disinterred.
22. Robert Tichborne Alive Brought to trial, sentenced to death but was reprieved. He spent the rest of life imprisoned in the Tower of London Died 1682.
23. Humphrey Edwards Dead Died in 1658.
24. Daniel Blagrave Alive Fled to Aachen, in what is now Germany. Died 1668.
25. Owen Rowe Alive Brought to trial, sentenced to life imprisonment in the Tower of London where he died in December 1661.
26. William Purefoy Dead Died in 1659.
27. Adrian Scroope Alive Tried, found guilty: hanged, drawn and quartered at Charing Cross on Wednesday 17 October 1660.
28. James Temple Alive Brought to trial, sentenced to life imprisonment on Jersey. Died 17 February 1680.[4]
29. Augustine Garland Alive Brought to trial, his death sentence was commuted to life imprisonment.
30. Edmund Ludlow Alive Surrendered to the Speaker of the House of Commons, and then escaped to the Canton of Bern. Died 1692.
31. Henry Marten Alive Tried, found guilty of regicide, and sentenced to life imprisonment in Chepstow Castle. Died 1680.
32. Vincent Potter Alive Brought to trial, he received the death sentence but died before its execution. Died either 1661 or 1662.
33. Sir William Constable Dead Died in 1655 — however his body was exhumed from Westminster Abbey and reburied in a communal burial pit after the Restoration.
34. Richard Ingoldsby Alive Pardoned. Died 1685.
35. William Cawley Alive Escaped to Switzerland. Died 1667.
36. John Barkstead Alive Arrested by the English ambassador to the Netherlands Sir George Downing, extradited and executed in 1662.
37. Isaac Ewer Dead Died in 1650 or 1651.
38. John Dixwell Alive Believed dead in England; fled to America, where he died under an assumed name. Died 1689.
39. Valentine Walton Alive Escaped to Germany after being condemned as a regicide. Died 1661.
40. Simon Mayne Alive Tried and sentenced to death, he died in the Tower of London in 1661 before his appeal could be heard.
41. Thomas Horton Dead Family estates confiscated. Had died 1649.
42. John Jones Maesygarnedd Alive Tried, found guilty: hanged, drawn and quartered at Charing Cross on Wednesday 17 October 1660.
43. John Moore Dead In 1649, fought in Ireland against the Marquess of Ormonde and became Governor of Dublin, dying of a fever there in 1650.
44. Gilbert Millington Alive After Charles's death, remained member of Rump Parliament until Cromwell dissolved it. After the Restoration was himself arraigned and confessed to being "guilty in every way." Tried and sentenced to death, but sentence commuted to life imprisonment. Spent final years in Jersey and died in 1666.
45. George Fleetwood Alive Brought to trial and sentenced to imprisonment in the Tower of London. He may have been transported to Tangier. Died 1672?
46. John Alured Dead Died in 1651.
47. Robert Lilburne Alive Tried Tuesday 16 October 1660, sentenced to death, later commuted to life imprisonment. Died in prison in August 1665.
48. William Say Alive Escaped to Switzerland. Died 1666.
49. Anthony Stapley Dead Died in 1655.
50. Sir Gregory Norton Dead Died 1652.
51. Thomas Challoner Alive Excluded from pardon and escaped to the Continent. In 1661, he died at Middelburg in the Netherlands.
52. Thomas Wogan Alive Held at York Castle until 1664 when he escaped to the Netherlands.
53. John Venn Dead Died in 1650.
54. Gregory Clement Alive Went into hiding, captured, tried, found guilty; and hanged, drawn and quartered at Charing Cross on Wednesday 17 October 1660.
55. John Downes Alive Tried, found guilty of regicide, and sentenced to life imprisonment. Died 1666.
56. Thomas Waite Alive Tried, found guilty of regicide, and sentenced to life imprisonment. Died 1668.
57. Thomas Scot Alive Fled to Brussels, returned to England, was tried, found guilty; and hanged, drawn and quartered at Charing Cross on Wednesday 17 October 1660. Died unrepentant.
58. John Carew Alive Joined Fifth Monarchists. Tried, found guilty; and hanged, drawn and quartered at Charing Cross on Monday 15 October 1660.
59. Miles Corbet Alive Fled to the Netherlands; arrested by the English ambassador to the Netherlands Sir George Downing; extradited; tried; found guilty; and was hanged, drawn and quartered on 19 April 1662.

Commissioners who did not sign[edit]

Name At the Restoration in 1660 Notes
Sir Thomas Andrewes (or Andrews) Dead Attended 3 sessions, including 27 January when the sentence was agreed upon. His name was one of 24 dead regicides who were excepted from the Indemnity and Oblivion Act on 9 June 1660 (see section XXXVIII of the act).
Francis Allen Dead Attended several session including the 27 January when the sentence was agreed upon. His name was one of 24 dead regicides who were excepted from the Indemnity and Oblivion Act on 9 June 1660 (see section XXXVIII of the act).
James Challoner (or Chaloner) Alive Brother of Thomas Challoner. He died in July 1660 from an illness caught after being imprisoned the previous year for supporting General Monck.[5]
John Dove Alive He took no part in the trial other than being present when the sentence was agreed on. At the Restoration he was contrite and, after making an abject submission to Parliament, he was allowed to depart unpunished.[6] Died 1664 or 1665.
John Fry Dead He was debarred from sitting on the High Court for heterodoxy on 26 January 1649, one day before the sentence was pronounced. His name was one of 20 dead regicides who were excepted from the Indemnity and Oblivion Act on 9 June 1660.[7] Died 1657.
Thomas Hammond Dead Attended 14 sessions. He was excepted from the Indemnity and Oblivion Act, allowing the state to confiscate the property that had belonged to him.[8]
Sir James Harrington, 3rd Baronet Alive Escaped and died in exile on the European mainland in 1680. Due to an oversight in the Indemnity and Oblivion Act, although he lost his title, the baronetcy passed to the next in line on his death.
Edmond Harvey Alive Attended the King's trial and sat on the committee to prepare the final charge, but did not sign the death warrant. After the Restoration he was held in the Tower of London after being attainted for high treason[9][10] He was tried on 16 October 1660, and sentenced to life imprisonment. He died in Pendennis Castle, Cornwall, in June 1673.[11]
William Heveningham Alive Found guilty of treason but successfully petitioned for mercy and was thereafter imprisoned in Windsor Castle until his death in 1678.
Francis Lassells Alive Not excluded from the general pardon under the Indemnity and Oblivion Act, but he was ordered to pay one year's rent on his estate to Charles II and along with John Hutchinson forbidden to hold any public office. Died 1667.
John Lisle Alive Escaped to Lausanne in Switzerland but was shot or stabbed by Irish Royalist James Cotter (using the alias Thomas Macdonnell) in August 1664.
Thomas Lister Alive He petitioned Parliament successfully that he was not present when the King was tried and sentenced, and although he was excluded from the Indemnity and Oblivion Act, he was merely banned for life from holding any office.[12] Died 1668.
Nicholas Love Alive Escaped to Hamburg. Died in Vevey, Switzerland in 1682.
Sir Henry Mildmay Alive Tried, stripped of his knighthood and sentenced to life imprisonment. He died before he was due to be transported to Tangier in 1664.
William Mounson, 1st Viscount Monson Alive Tried, stripped of his titles and property and imprisoned for life in the Fleet Prison where he died in 1673.
Isaac Penington Alive Sentenced to life imprisonment and died in the Tower of London in 1661.
Sir Gilbert Pickering Alive He only attended two sittings at the trial and he did not sign Charles's death warrant, so he was able to use the influence of his brother-in-law Earl of Sandwich, to secure his pardon, although he was banned for life from holding any office.[13]
Robert Wallop Alive Sentenced to life imprisonment and died in the Tower of London in 1667.
Sir Thomas Fairfax Alive He refused to sign and was later given a royal pardon and was allowed to keep his titles despite his involvement as Lord General of the Parliamentarian Forces.

Associates[edit]

Name Office At the Restoration in 1660 Notes
Daniel Axtell Officer of the Guard Alive Tried, found guilty of participating in the regicide; hanged, drawn and quartered at Tyburn on Thursday 19 October 1660.
Andrew Broughton Clerk of the Court Alive Escaped to Switzerland in 1663.[14] Died 1687.
John Cooke Solicitor-General Alive Tried, found guilty of regicide; hanged, drawn and quartered at Charing Cross on Tuesday 16 October 1660.
Edward Dendy Serjeant-at-Arms Alive Escaped to Switzerland in 1663.[14]
Dr Isaac Dorislaus Assistant to the Solicitor-General Dead A distinguished scholar from the Netherlands, he was murdered in the Hague in 1649 by royalist refugees.
Francis Hacker Officer of the Guard Alive Tried, found guilty of signing the execution order; hanged at Tyburn on 19 October 1660.[15]
William Hewlett Captain in the Guard Alive Found guilty of regicide at the same trial as Daniel Axtel, but not executed with him.
Cornelius Holland Member of Council of State Alive Escaped to Lausanne, Switzerland at Restoration. Died 1671.
Hercules Huncks Officer of the Guard Alive Refused to sign the order to the executioners, which Hacker did instead. He testified against Axtel and Hacker, and was pardoned. Died 1660.
Robert Phayre Officer of the Guard Alive Refused to sign the order to the executioners. Not tried, released in 1662. Died 1682.
Hugh Peters Preacher Alive Tried, found guilty of inciting regicide; hanged, drawn and quartered at Charing Cross on Tuesday 16 October 1660.
John Phelps Clerk of the Court Alive Escaped to Switzerland. Died 1666.
Matthew Thomlinson Officer of the Guard Alive Pardoned for showing courtesy to the King and for testifying against Axtell and Hacker. Died 1681.

Others[edit]

  • John Lambert was not in London for the trial of Charles I. At the Restoration, he was found guilty of high treason and remained in custody in Guernsey for the rest of his life.
  • Sir Henry Vane the Younger served on the Council of State during the Interregnum even though he refused to take the oath which expressed approbation (approval) of the King's execution. At the Restoration, after much debate in Parliament, he was exempted from the Indemnity and Oblivion Act. In 1662 he was tried for high treason, found guilty and beheaded on Tower Hill on 14 June 1662.

Shortly after the Restoration in Scotland the Scottish Parliament passed an Act of indemnity and oblivion. It was similar to the English Indemnity and Oblivion Act, but there were many more exceptions under the Scottish act than there were under the English act. However most of the Scottish exceptions were pecuniary, only four men were executed (all for treason but none for regicide) of whom the Marquess of Argyll was the most prominent. He was found to be guilty of collaboration with Cromwell's government, and beheaded on 27 May 1661.

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Kirby footnote 14: J de Morgan, "The Most Notable Trial in Modern History" in H W Fuller (ed) The Green Bag, vol xi, 1899, Boston, 307 at 308.
  2. ^ Kirby, M The Trial of King Charles I - Defining moment for our constitutional liberties Address to the Anglo-Australasian Lawyers' Association, 22 January 1999.
  3. ^ a b c Bradshaw 2010, pp. 379–381
  4. ^ Balleine's History Of Jersey, page 148
  5. ^ Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Chaloner, James.
  6. ^ Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Dove, John (d. 1664/5)
  7. ^ Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Fry, John (c.1609–1656/7)
  8. ^ Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Hammond, Thomas (c.1600–1658)
  9. ^ House of Lords Journal Volume 11 7 February 1662 Attainted Persons brought to the Bar
  10. ^ House of Commons Journal Volume 8: Executing Regicides 27 January 1662
  11. ^ Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Harvey, Edmund (c.1601–1673)
  12. ^ Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Lister, Thomas (1597–1668)
  13. ^ Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Pickering, Sir Gilbert
  14. ^ a b James Alexander Manning (1851). The Lives of the Speakers of the House of Commons, from the Time of King Edward III to Queen Victoria. 
  15. ^ Extracts from the transcript of the October 1660 trial and execution of 10 regicides At the end of the article there is a description of the executions. They were all hanged, drawn and quartered except for Francis Hacker who was hanged.

References[edit]

Further reading[edit]