1799: Dun Mikiel Xerri, Maltese patriot 1676: Joshua Tefft, drawn and quartered in Rhode Island

Themed Set: Resistance and Rebellion in the Restoration

January 18th, 2010 Headsman

It was a world turned upside down.

The Stuart line was (for now) restored to the throne, and the regicides of its late king horribly if not voluminously punished.

Not so easy, though, to undo the violent social changes that had produced (and fermented in) the Interregnum.

Feudal property relations had been overthrown, religion cast into dispute; uncharted lands were discovered and conquered, the laws of nature unveiled; great lords were put to death. Danger and possibility and portent must have felt omnipresent. Even London burned down.

Marx, endlessly fascinated by the English bourgeoisie’s rise over the centuries, wrote that it “has pitilessly torn asunder the motley of ties that bound man to his ‘natural superiors.'” Into this disorder stepped a bewildering welter of ideas and models of life to contend at the frequent expense of their adherents’ lives.

From affairs of state to affairs of the heart, from the remote wildernesses of the New World to the highways of Albion, the Stuarts’ subjects risked life and limb seeking their places in this upside-down world.

On this day..

Entry Filed under: Themed Sets




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