Posted by Eigon
--the Cavaliers were Wrong but Wromantic and the Roundheads were Right but Repulsive!
Love it! Sutcliff was onto a winner with Sir Thomas Fairfax, who was both Wromantic and Right
There was a strong tradition of Quakerism in Rosemary Sutcliff's family background, which might also have inspired her interest in the Puritan cause.
One thing to watch out for when buying a copy of "Rider on a White Horse"
is to avoid the Puffin edition, which is an abridged version for younger readers.
There were several noblemen who experienced intense conflict with Puritan leanings and personal loyalty to the king. Charles' standard bearer Sir Edmund Verney was one of these. His story also shows how divisve loyalties split families apart.
"Verney demonstrates well the heart searching that went on before the outbreak of the Civil War. He had a long association with Charles I, having been his servant before he came to the throne (1613), and had maintained that relationship in the intervening years. By 1642 he had benefited from Charles's sales of monopolies, received a court pension, and had lent Charles large sums of money.
However, he was also a Puritan, a MP, and a member of both the Short and Long parliaments, and was opposed to Charles's arbitrary measures during the Eleven Years Tyranny. Even his sons were split - his eldest son fought for Parliament (as did his older brother), while his two younger sons joined Verney and fought for the King. Verney explained his decision to fight for the King in a letter, expressing motives common to many of Charles's supporters.
I have eaten his bread and served him near thirty years, and will not do so base a thing as to forsake him; and choose rather to lose my life (which I am sure to do) to preserve and defend those things which are against my conscience to preserve and defend
Verney Memoirs, London, 1892, Vol. I, p.277
When war broke out, Verney was appointed to be the King's standard-bearer, but at the battle of Edgehill (23 October 1642), he was killed while engaged in intense hand to hand fighting, and the standard captured. "
According to the family history his body was never recovered, but his severed hand was found, still clutching the standard.
(Edit) Elizabeth Goudge's "Witch Witch"
covers the Battle of Edgehill and the capture of the Royal Standard (the flag, that is, the pole still being in Sir Edmund's possession!) She also tells the story of the daring recovery of the flag from Oliver Cromwell by the Royalist Captain John Smith.