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The quarrel between the Earl of Manchester and Oliver Cromwell: an episode of the English Civil War online

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accordingly ordered under the command of Coll. Wermonden, and
uppon theire march another order came from the Committee of
both Kingdomes commanding my Lord of Manchester to march with
his army into the west, which presently was done; and if the highe a
of mutinie by Cromwell and his juncto who endevoured the
hindring of the army by perswading them to a mutiny would have
bine sooner and more able to putt things in execution then was
done. However, my Lord of Manchester to testifie his willingness
did march by 12 or 14 miles a day, no less. At that tyme my Lord
of Manchester had enough to doe to keepe the army from mutining,
being put on by Cromwell and his juncto, who absolutely refused
orders from Major-Generall Craufurd, especially Coll. Pickering's
and Mountagrie , s regiments? These heavy distractions invented by
Cromwell hee went on in a most high way, and, to shew his power
in the army against those who weare the refusers to under-
write the scandalous petition, he outed Cap. Arminger, who
was sent, and by leave of his Collonell, to London, and his
troope given away to a notorious Independent, who uppon the
receiveing of it into his charge the said Cromwell command-

* Something seems to have been omitted here.

b Underlined to note that they were partizans of Cromwell. — G.C.



ing the said Fleetwood to cashire the whole troope and putt
in none but Independents, that theire pernitious endes might the
better bee accomplished, which accordingly was done. All this tyme
the said Cromwell endevoured to worke Major-Generall Craufurd's
ruine by diswading the Earle of Manchester's army not to obey him,
and, gi veing his charge away to others, makeing them to doe the duty,
did in the most notorious manner traduce and callumneate the said
Craufurd to make him odious to the army and to discontent him,
that so hee the said Cromwell the better might advance his wicked
endes, uttering many speeches highly to his disadvantage and utter
ruine, and for drawing of factions in the army, which highly dis-
tracted the publique good in Lincolne, who still sate at theire con-
sultations how to insult over my Lord of Manchester and his army,
and still continuing uppon theire mischeivous actions in fomenting
of mischeife all the way betweene Lincolne and Huntington; the
said Cromwell attributing a all the praise to himself e of other men's
actions, whose only reason icas to cloud those who desiered to doe
good servise. The pressing defers the Earle of Manchester had to
putt in execution the Committee of both Kingdomes there com-
mands for the joyneing with my Lord of Essex, and his releife of
Abington at his first coming to Eeading, was cleerely demonstrated
by his willingness in sending necessaries which they stood in neede
of at Abington, and way ting uppon Cromwell's returne from Banbury,
which action there deserves notice to bee taken of it. Uppon his
Excellence's first letter from Portsmouth to the Earle of Man-
chester for a conjunction, my Lord of Manchester marched away
to Baseing with his foote and a fewe troopes of horse, send-
ing all the most parte of the horse to joyne with Sir William
Waller at Salisbury, who weare repulsed b and forsed to retire to
Basing, my Lord of Manchester's resolution there beeing so bent

a By means of the Press. Military reputations were much helped by the Diurnals.
It is probable that Cromwell did not reject the overtures of special correspondents as
Colonel Hutchinson did. His name is often mentioned. — G.C.

b At Andover— G.C.

((tnt\ I


for fighting that hee himselfe, my Lord Wareston, Sir William
Balfore, Major-Generall Skippon, with diverse others, went to looke
uppon the fields, that, if the enemie advanced, to sett out the place
every army should stand uppon, which was seconded by his
Excellencie the Earle of Essex at his coming to Basing ; and for the
subsistence of the armies at Basing-Stoke it was concluded to march
to Eedding and so to come uppon the other side of the Kennet upon
the enemy, and to forse the King to fight, notwithstanding the
enemy beeing in theire strength, my Lord of Essex beeing in
Eedding leaft sicke. As it was concluded so it was performed,
that in the latter ende of October; the result of the first debate
beeing that Major-Generall Craufurd should march about with the
Earle of Manchester's foote and all the cavalry, saveing 1 ,000, a which
should stay by the foote uppon the hills neere Dolman's howse ; and
after Major-Generall Craufurd had orders to march the first result
was alltered, and the seacond was that Major-Generall Skippon and
the citisens should march about to Spen Hill, b and Craufurd to
stay uppon the hill neere Dollman's howse ; so that night the enemy
not beeing so much as allarumed, the next day both horse and
foote as is mentioned marched where they came about 3 of the
clock in the afternoone, where both our armies and the enemy
began to play uppon one another with greate canon and about 4
a clock began to play with musquetts. Uppon the right wing was
Sir William Balford (i.e. Balfour) and upon the leaft wing
Lieftenant-Generall Cromwell with my Lord of Manchester's horse,
the bodies of foote advanceing engaged with the enemy, that by
the report of the best there, if Cromwell had played the parte that
became him, the enemie had bine totally routed; all the horse
under his command stood still when Coll. Bartklett c brigade
teas charged three tyms. Notwithstanding all that they stood still,
Cromwell himselfe not beeing uppon the head of them d Generall

* Under Ludlow. — G.C. b Making a wide circuit of Donnington Castle. — G.C.

c i.e. Berkeley,— G.C.

d See the Earl of Manchester's statement as given by Rush wood. — G. C.


Leiftenant Middleton came seeing so greate absurdities and over-
sights, and desired the said Cromwell's horse to charge, who refused
him till hee went with one of the squadrons and charged the
enemy, who was routed and lefte on seconded to fly for his life,
beeing in the middle of his enemies, so that day there was no
servise performed att all by Cromwell. Night came on, the enemy
marched away in the night in great disorder, in so much that the
van was at Wallingforde when the reare was at Dunnington.
Notwithstanding of Cromwell's knowledge of the enemies running,
there was no course taken for the preventing of theire running away,
which by Cromwell's horse should have bine performed. Both Major-
Generall Skippon, Coll. Barklett, and Coll. Dawies intimateing
theire running unto the head of the horse, and nothing done till the
next day at nyne a clock in the morneing, where they had not so much
as a scout out to know if the enemy weare gone or not, neither was
there any sent unto the Earl of Manchester to lett him know of theire
goeing till about eight in the morneing. a My Lord of Manchester
in the day preceding did labour with a greate deale of toyle and
greate danger of bis life, in so much that the men who weare
ryding^ with him weare shott. Notwithstanding these greate
dangers hee was in hee endeavoured the utmost of his abilities by
rideing to and fro and commanding things to bee putt in execution
as first in the morneing. Hee commanded a party of 400 mus-
queteers to falle over the little river which passes by Dunington
Castle, over a bridge, which most dextrously hee commanded the
night before, to prepare for the diversion c of the King's forces from
goeing to Spen Hill, where they learned in the morneing our
greatest force was a marching, which accordingly was done, and if

*■ This statement seems to show that Cromwell was quite as much in fault as the
Earl of Manchester.— G.C.

b Inserted in the margin by another hand.

c A rather perilous manoeuvre on the part of the Earl of Manchester, as it might
have drawn the whole of the King's forces upon him — for at this time the rest of the
Parliament army were making their flank march. — G.C.


those who weare commanded had not exceeded theire commission
[they] would have had greate victory, and as it was they tooke two
workes from the enemy, wherein they tooke a captayne and severall
prisoners, and advanced too farr without order and weare repulsed,
to the greate greife of the Earle of Manchester. So that tyme the
Earle of Manchester did continue in his very greate toyling to pre-
pare the falling uppon the enemy in and neere Dollman's howse,
and above 500 commanded musqueteeres, commanded for the
falling on first as forlorne hope, which to the amazement of the
enemy weare severall tymes drawne on and off, and at last they fell
on, seconded by the severall brigades of foote. If the forwardness of
Major-Generall Craufurd's regiment had been seconded the howse
and garden had bine gayned, but they weare bett off with the loss
of one of Major-Generall Craufurd's collours and twoe drakes, lost
for want of lookeing unto beeing carried headlong on ; the faulte of
the losing of the draks teas Capiten Hamond? The next morneing
a councell of warr was called at Speen, the result whereof was that
the horse should followe the pursuite of the enemy, who went no
further then to Blewbery and thereabouts, giveing the enemy all
the advantages in the world, so that in few dayes folio weing wee
marched with the foote to Blewbery and Hagburne, Harwell and
Chilton, where wee resolved in a councell of warr to stay till wee
received orders from the Committee of both kingdomes ; uppon
the receipt whereof wee marched the whole army, both horse
and foote, and quartered the foote in Newbery and thereabout,
and the horse betweene Eedding and Hungerford, uppon both
sides of the Kennett, where wee continued with a constant resolu-
tion to fight the enemy and to prevent the relieveing of Dun-
nington Castle, and to that purpose Major-Generall Skippon and
Major-Generall Craufurd were sent to looke upon the feilds, and

a Words underscored interlined by another hand.

This is probably Colonel Robert Hammond, afterwards the King's gaoler at Caris-
brook. The passage seems like a covert insinuation that there was wilful neglect
on the part of Hammond. — G.C.



so resolved to meete the enemy neer a Bennington Castle towards
Compton Bourns upon Bussoke h Heath, and if our intelligence had
bine good we had accordinglie followed our resolutions. The
enemy did advance towards Wallingford, of whose motions wee
had dayly good intelligence till the very instant of the enemies
advance, the length of Compton Dounes. At five o'clock at night a
leiftenant of the enemies did come to Newberry to Sir William
Balfore's howse, where my L a of Manchester was, who related that
the enemy was in his march uppon Compton Downes with a resolu-
tion to fight, and reported to bee 15,000 horse and foote, so that
instantly all the commanders-in-chiefes weare called to a councell of
war, the result whereof was to drawe very early all the horse into
Newberry Wash, which was not performed. The enemy marching
very furiously came in view at Dunnington Castle, where not so
much as one to oppose them, farr less such numbers as became to
knowe of the enemies motions. The enemie presently drew over
the little river c at Dunnington to Speene Fields, where the enemy
posessed themselves, which, without all peradventure, if our horse
had bine according to the hower appointed, we had beaten the
enemies army regiment after a regiment as they marched over the
narrow passages before they should have come to the posture of
fighting. Major- General SMppon railling uppon the horss on the
head of the armie d upon the feilds before Newbery Townes ende,
and in a little howse in Newbery Towne, and towards Schew,
wee held councells what to doe, the result whereof was that
wee could not fight the enemy upon the feild before Newbery,
the Castle of Dunnington commanding all that feild with
theire ordinance ; al the officers of horss mutche aganst drawing
the horss throghe the toune from Newbery wasche, saying that

8 Interlined by the other hand.

b Bussock is about a mile and a half northward of Donnington Castle. Here are
the remains of Roman encampments. It seems to be the place alluded to by
Clarendon in his account of the relief of the Castle 9th November, 1644.— G.C.

£ The Lamborne.— G.C.

d Interlined by the other hand.


the horss could not stand without great danger of the great
losses My L d of Manchester said what ever was thought fitt
by the councell of warr hee should bee very very* well contented,
and so acte. But some weare for fighting and draweing the
whole force into the feilds be/or Newburry, but opposed by
others, especially Major-Generall Skippon, Middleton, Craufurd;
and Hoburne tolde that if they continued uppon that posture wee
resolved uppon wee would suffer dishonor and bee buried quick.
The enemy weare about 12,000 horse and fbote resolved to fight
us, wee in our trenches lookeing uppon them, a body of ho°se
charged our horse, who routed ours and beatt them into our foote,
but our foote received the enemy very bravely and repulsed them,
so that Major-Generall Craufurd, not one of the officers of the horse
in chiefe excepting Sir William Balfour c there, marched towards
the enemy and made them give ground, in so much that if our
horse had come to us wee had undoubtedly routed the enemy. So
the night came on. Then Cromwell and the horse began to come
through the towne when all was done, so about 8 o'clock at night
wee knew of the enemyes marching away, it was resolved that all
the horse should follow the enemy the nexte morninge by the breake
of day* At 9 e o'clock the next morneing all the horse weare
standing uppon the feild neere Dollman's howse, so that Major-
Generall Craufurd presently drew the Earle of Manchester's foote to
the horse at Dollman's howse. So then, all the comanders-in-chiefe
rideing to the topp of a hill to looke uppon the enemy, Major-
Generall Craufurd desired wee might fall uppon them in the reare
before they went away. My Lord of Manchester answered, With
all my hart, what wee doe lett it be quickly done. Sir Arthure
Haselrigg and Cromwell enquireing of mee the way of it how I
could doe it, I told them that it beeing so neere I desired that 3,000
horse and a musqueteir behinde every one/ to plant in the hedges,

" Interlined by the other hand. b g^ c

c Interlined as before. .1 The like

■ Originally written " 8." f A common practice in those times— G.C.


might be sent and the rest to follow* which undoubtedly would bo
the only way. Cromwell said that the horse was so weake it could
not bee, so presently my Lord of Manchester said, Gentlemen, lett
us doe quickly what wee doe, so that presently all the commanders-
in-cheife wente to a little howse on the head of the army, where Sir
Arthure Haselrig b entered in speech first, saying that the King did
march in a very good posture and that he was stronger than
hee expected them to bee, and made a very regulare retreate ; that it
was impossible for us to come at him without greate disadvantage,
and that it was not councellable to fight them or follow them, for
our horse was very weake, and though wee beate the King hee would
still bee King, and wee should not be able to doe any good uppon any
of his garrisons, nor take any of them, for his army was a greate deale
more true unto him than ours was, and though they should bee
routed they would gather themselves togeather againe, and if the
King beat us the kingdome of England would bee lost, for neither
officers nor garrisons would make any of our runners stand, but bee
a meanes to loose Abington, Redding, and all other places. More,
hee would not only be able to overrun all the country where the
Parliament friends are, and drawe a greate party to himselfe by
such an overthrowe, and would bee able to goe to the very gates of
London, and wee had no meanes to shun it or keepe him back,
neither was there any reliefe neerer than Newcastle which we might
expect, no releife so suddenly from it, and so if wee followed the
King, considering the weakeness of our horse and the feweness in
number, as hee supposed them not to exceede my Lord GeneralPs
1,000, Sir William Waller's 1,500, and my Lord of Manchester's
2,000; but to lye still at Nubery with our foote and to quarter our
horse as neere as can be to attend the enemies motions, whereby
wee might bee able to enterpose betweene them and Basing, and so
not to lett them poppe into Nube[rry], and so further bee a meanes
to releive Basing and the looseing of Xubcry, all which hee humbly

» Interlined as before.

'' Sir Arthur Haselrigg was always a timorous counsellor in the field.— G.C.


conceived was the best; and so Cromwell presently speakeing did in
these same very words make a speech very neere a quarter of an
hower ; so that all joyning did presently order the foote to New-
bery, and the horse thereabouts. Awhile after there came letters
to Major-Generall Craufurd, the substance whereof was that all the
blame at London lay uppon Manchester, Middleton, Craufurd, and
Hoburn; and this letter was seconded by a letter from the Com-
mittee, which, though in downe right termes did not say wee weare
to blame, but so much that nothing should be done without a joint
consent of the whole councell of warr, which letters much touched
my Lord of Manchester and the most parte of the commanders-in-
cheife ; and in my Lord of Manchester's lodging in Newbery, in the
presence of my Lord of Manchester, Sir William Eelfore, Sir
William Waller, Major-Generall Skippon, Coll. Barklet, and Major-
Generall-Craufurd, Cromwell did say, finding my Lord of Manches-
ter much moved at the aforesaid letters after hee reads it twice over,
that hee found nothing in the letter but what may bee written
without reflexion uppon any, and told my Lord of Manches-
ter : My Lord, I hold him for a villain and a knave that
would doe any man ill offices, but there was nothing done but
what was justifiable and by the joint consent of the councell
of warr, and that there was nothing done but what was answerable.
So uppon that councell of warr there was presently thought fitt
that there should bee a letter drawne and sent to the Committee
of both Kingdomes representing the whole condition of the army,
which was referred to bee done by Leif.-Generall Cromwell,
which accordingly was done, wherein hee gave a full relation
of the weakeness of the army, which, considering the wayes hee
has gone, much deserves your notice takeing of it. So allwayes it
was held fitt in all councells of warrs, by reason of the greate con-
sequence both Abington and Reading weare unto us, to continue
our quarters at Newbery, and so to waite uppon the enemies
motions. So that our intelligence was that Prince Rupart had an
intention to releive Basing House with a party of horse, which to


prevent it was ordered by a couneell of warr that the three armies
of horse should releive one another for the hindring of that designe,
which accordingly was done. So, uppon our intelligence of the
King's remove from Marlburrow, it was supposed hee was marching
to Basing to releive it with his army, wee conceived it fitting to
march that day to Oldermeiston, where wee continued upon the
feilds, and if the enemy went to Baseing to endevour to intercept
him ; and so at Oldermeiston at a couneell of warr, where the
question was only whether it was councellable to fight or not, and
concluded by all, no man speaking so much against fighting as
Cromwell, and so unanimously consenting not to fight, but to
endeavour to hinder the releife of Baseing, or to withdrawe the
forces which weare lying before Baseing, and so to keepe our
armies intire, dividing ourselves the foote at Kedding and Henly
and our horse all about Fernham, Okingham, Windsor, May den-
head, and Stwins.

[Endorsed] " A brieff recollection of passages in my Lord of
Manchester's armie." a [" From h Maior-Gener."" c

a In the same handwriting as the interlineations.

b Major-General Craufurd. It seems likely that the interlineations may be those
of Sir William Balfour. This narrative, like that which bears the name of Crom-
well, omits all mention of the failure of the combined forces to take Donnington
Castle, which they summoned the day after the Battle of Newbury. (See Claren-
don's History.) It is probable that the assailants who were defeated by the little
garrison were ashamed of their failure and did not wish to make it public. — G.C.

c Added in another hand, probably that of the Earl of Manchester.




About the middle of December, now allmost two yeares sine, the
now Leiuetenant-Generall Cromwell being then captaine of a troope
of horse under the command of the Earle of Essex, and I well
knowinge that he had some part of his estate lyinge in the He of
Ely, and a good part of my owne estate lying in the same He, and I
well understood the dayly approch of the enimie upon our bordering
counteys, and that the enimie and many of the inhabitants did plott
to take that He for theire quarters, and soe to annoy all the adjacent
counteys that bounde upon the sayd He.

Thes motives moved me to goe to Captaine Cromwell and to
acquaint him with it, and did desire his assistance in that matter ;
he well conceived the danger and how it might be prevented,
wherupon he moved the House to take it into their consideration ;
and he being in some hopes to attaine his desire he told me that he
would not goe upon the buisness without I would take command
and goe with him, which I could ill have done, I having soe much
buisness both in the citye and country; yet I left all and raysed a
troope of dragoones, horse, armes, bridles, saddles at my great
charge, and payed my troope and officers for tenne weeks together
out of my owne money by Captain Cromwell's perswasions, and
many promises that I should have all my money with the first,
which to this day I have never received one penny, though ther


hath been great sums of money payd him, and he and some of his
officers did, as I conceive, take away great sums of money from the
subject injuriously and contrary to the ordinances of the Parliament."

Now, to give an account of what I have observed and what I
have heard and seene to doe this bleding state servis, here I shall
declare Coll. Cromwell raysing of his regiment makes choyce of his
officers, not such as weare souldiers or. men of estate, but such as
were common men, pore and of meane parentage, onely he would
give them the title of godly pretious men ; yett his common practise
was to casheire honest gentlemen and souldiers that ware stout in
the cause as I conceive, witnes thos that did suffer in that case.

I have heard him oftentimes say that it must not be souldiers nor
[the] Scots that must doe this worke, but it must be the godly to
this purposs. When any new English man or some new upstart
Independent did appeare ther must be a way mayd for them by
casheiring others, some honest commander or other, and thos silly
peopell putt in ther command. If you will examine this you will
have proofe enough.

If you looke upon his owne regiment of horse see what a swarme
ther is of thos that call themselves the godly ; some of them profess
they have sene vissions and had revellations.

Looke on Coll. Flettwoods regiment with his Major Harreson,
what a cluster of preaching offecers and troopers ther is.

Looke what a company of troopers are thrust into other regi-
ments by the head and shoulders, most of them Independents,
whomethey call Godly pretiouse men ; nay, indeed, to say the truth,
allmost all our horse be mayd of that faction.

If you looke on Coll. Russell's regiment, Coll. Mountegue's, Coll.
Pickerin's, Coll. Eainsborough, b all of them proffessed Independents

a Originally written " peopell," and altered by another hand.

b An officer very much thought of by Cromwell. He was afterwards made
an Admiral, but, being discarded by the navy, he returned to his command of foot,
and was shortly after killed at Doncaster by a party from Pontefract who had
intended to make him a prisoner. — G.C.


intire, and besides in most of our regements they have crammed in
one company or other that they or ther offecers must be Indepen-
dents. When will our warrs be ended by thos whose command
gloryes in themselves whilst we have warr, and will be ther shame

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Online LibraryDavid MassonThe quarrel between the Earl of Manchester and Oliver Cromwell: an episode of the English Civil War → online text (page 14 of 17)