Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Cromwell...Lord Protector...Beheaded...


Saying the name “Oliver Cromwell” elicits two reactions, depending where it is said.  In England, Cromwell is viewed as the savior of a ragged nation, a poor nation, after the monarchy made some unwise decisions.

His own decisions did not always work out well for him, as he was beheaded in 1540. The English regretted this decision a few decades later, deciding to exhume him and re-bury him in a place with more dignity.   

However, in Ireland (Drogheda and Wexford, in particular), Cromwell is known as the slaughterer of 500,000 Irishmen.  As he marched through the land, he killed the Catholics and some Protestants did not fare all that well (especially the Presbyterians).

During a 1984 visit, we inadvertently walked in Cromwell's path and when we said “Oliver Cromwell”, an Irishman would repeat the name, cough up some phlegm, and spit on the ground.  No more needed to be said.


Here are the two views:

1485-1540
plaque marking burial place of Cromwell's head WKPD
The English revered Oliver Cromwell
for a while, anyway
















But then there were the Irish:

Massacre at Drogheda
Slaughter at Drogheda, Ireland

Now, here is a condensed historical version by Monty Python.



Gotta love
Monty Python
and their
excellent view
of history.



p.s. Have you ever seen "The Holy Grail"?  Worthwhile.

28 comments:

  1. How you see him all depends on where you live.
    Yes, God Bless Monty Python!

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    1. One country's savior is another's tyrant. In England Cromwell is seen as a righteous man. In Ireland, he was seen as a devil monster.

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  2. History is always different from the view of the "winners" and the "losers".

    Gotta love, Monty!

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  3. Everything depends on what side one was on

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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    2. It did then and it still is now.

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  4. It is all the perspective of each side

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  5. Great history lessons, nice of you to share.

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  6. History will always remember the name, Oliver Cromwell.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I sure hope so, at least for another generation.

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  7. Through the ages, the only thing different in how mankind treats each other is their choice of weapons. .

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Words are sometimes a better choice of least destruction.

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  8. Man, the Irish couldn't catch a break!

    Love Python, as you know.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They really couldn't! Once Henry 8th landed, it all went "to hell in a handbasket."

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    2. Memories are long in that part of the world, too. Resentments are likely to linger for generations to come.

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  9. Perspective is everything.
    True then, true now.
    And yes, even my non-movie going self knows that one. And loves it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Monty Python never ceases to put a new slant on history or anything for that matter.

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  10. Ah yes, it always depends on which viewpoint you look through.

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    Replies
    1. Fortunately, history captures it all, maybe just maybe, it will be written down correctly.

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  11. How often is it true that one nation's hero is another nation's nightmare? I'm Native American and have Italian friends. We simply don't discuss Columbus.

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  12. The video isn't available in my country :(
    I didn't learn much about Oliver Cromwell in school, so all I know is the name.
    I LOVE The Holy Grail, I must watch it again some time soon.

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    Replies
    1. I must watch it again soon as well. *shrubbery*

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  13. I couldn't hear the video on my little notebook computer, but Monty Python is a lot of intellectual fun. I'm sure most who are heroes to some are also disdained by others. When all can agree then it might be suspicious.

    Lee
    Wrote By Rote

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    1. With the Iran-America Nuclear treaty on the verge of being signed, I cannot help but wonder the same thing.
      I hope you can find the video on a larger format--it would be worthwhile.

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Go ahead...it won' t hurt...I'd love to hear what you think!