Charles I of England

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Charles I by Anthony van Dyck

Charles I (1600–1649), son of James I, was king of England from 1625 until his death. His rule was famous for the English Civil War, in which he lost to Oliver Cromwell. He was publicly executed in 1649, and monarchy was abolished for eleven years. It returned when his son Charles II was declared king.

Sourced quotes

  • "Never make a defence or apology before you be accused."[1]
Simple: Never defend yourself or say sorry before you are accused of doing something.
About the quote: Written in a letter to his friend, Lord Wentworth, in 1636.
  • "I see all the birds are flown."[2]
Simple: I see all the birds have flown away.
About the quote: Spoken on 4 January 1642, when he marched into the House of Commons and ordered five men to be arrested. They had escaped, and were protected by the Parliament.
  • "Sweet-heart, now they will cut off thy father's head. Mark, child, what I say: they will cut off my head, and perhaps make thee a king. But mark what I say: you must not be a king, so long as your brothers Charles and James do live."[1]
Simple: Dear, now they will cut off your father's head. Note, child, what I say: they will cut off my head, and perhaps make you king. But note what I say: you must not be a king because your [elder] brothers Charles and James are still alive.
About the quote: Spoken to his son, Henry Stuart, Duke of Gloucester. Charles and James had fled out of the country.
  • "You manifestly wrong even the poorest ploughman, if you demand not his free consent."[1]
Simple: You greatly wrong the poorest ploughman if you do not demand his acceptance.
  • "As to the King, the laws of the land will clearly instruct you for that...For the people; and truly I desire their liberty and freedom, as much as any body: but I must tell you, that their liberty and freedom consists in having the government of those laws, by which their life and their goods may be most their own; 'tis not for having share in government [sirs] that is nothing pertaining to 'em. A subject and a sovereign are clean different things."[1]
Simple: To the king, the laws of the country will clearly guide you for that...For the people; and really I want their freedom and liberty as much as anybody: but I must tell you, that their freedom and liberty is made up of having the government of those laws, by which their life and their belongings may be most their own; it is not for having a share in government that is about them. A subject and a sovereign are very different things.
  • "If I would have given way to an arbitrary way, for to have all laws changed according to the power of the sword, I needed not to have come here; and therefore I tell you (and I pray God it be not laid to your charge) that I am the martyr of the people."[1]
Simple: If I gave way to an erratic way, to have all the laws changed in line with the sword, I did not need to come here; and thus I tell you (and I pray God that it is not put in your hands) that I am a martyr of the people.
  • "I die a Christian, according to the profession of the Church of England, as I found it left me by my father."[1]
Simple: I die a Christian, in line with the profession of the Church of England as it was left to me by my father.
About the quote: At the scaffold at Whitehall Palace before his execution, January 30 1649.
  • "I go from a corruptible to an incorruptible crown, where no disturbance can be, no disturbance in the world."[1]
Simple: I go from a bad to a good crown, where nothing can disturb me, no disturbance at all.
About the quote: At the scaffold at Whitehall Palace before his execution, January 30 1649.

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 "Charles I". Published in Sir Charles Petrie (ed.) Letters of King Charles I (1935). Oxford Dictionary of Quotations (September 3, 1636). Retrieved on November 16, 2008
  2. Roberts, Stephen K. (2004). "Theme: Five members (act 1641)". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Retrieved on November 16, 2008

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