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Henry Ireton

(1611—1651) parliamentarian army officer and regicide


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(1611–51).

Ireton was plunged into the Civil War, since he was appointed by Parliament to command the horse at Nottingham two months before Charles I raised his standard in the same town. He fought at Edgehill and in the first battle of Newbury, where he was wounded, and rapidly became one of Cromwell's most trusted lieutenants. In 1646 he married Cromwell's daughter Bridget. Bulstrode Whitelocke described him as an excellent man of business with a great influence over Cromwell. He took a prominent part in the Putney army debates of November 1647, ardently defending the rights of property against radical and egalitarian proposals. The second civil war persuaded him that no deal with Charles was possible and in January 1649 he signed the king's death warrant. He accompanied Cromwell to Ireland and remained in charge when Cromwell returned to England in May 1650. The following year he died of fever.

Subjects: British History — European History.


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