The Levellers

Rachel Foxley

in The Oxford Handbook of Literature and the English Revolution

Published in print November 2012 | ISBN: 9780199560608
Published online January 2013 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks of Literature

The Levellers

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  • Literature
  • Literary Studies (1500 to 1800)



The Leveller movement emerged from the fracturing of the parliamentarian side during the First Civil War and the contested victory which followed the war. It was active and occasionally influential in the late 1640s, radically challenging the direction of parliamentarian settlement over religion, the role of the King and House of Lords, and the nature of consent to and participation in government, before turning decisively against the Commonwealth regime in 1649. This article first examines the three Leveller leaders — John Lilburne, Richard Overton, and William Walwyn — and then analyses the writings of the Leveller movement as a whole.

Keywords: Leveller movement; Leveller leaders; John Lilburne; Richard Overton; William Walwyn

Article.  7198 words. 

Subjects: Literature ; Literary Studies (1500 to 1800)

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