Timeline for the English Civil War

Timeline for the English Civil War

The English Civil War took place between 1642 and 1651 and was the result of conflict between Charles I and Parliament over an Irish insurrection. Oliver Cromwell’s victory for Parliamentary forces at the 1645 Battle of Naseby ended the first stage of the war, while the second stage of the war was decided by Charles’ defeat at the Battle of Preston and his subsequent execution in 1649. Charles’ son, also named Charles, then decided to form an army made up of English and Scottish Royalists, which forced Cromwell's hand and led to his invasion of Scotland in 1650. The following year, the remaining Royalist forces were defeated by Cromwell and so ended the English Civil War. Despite this, Charles II still managed to secure the throne less than 10 years later in 1660.


4 January: Charles attempted to arrest five MPs

10 January: Charles left London

13 February: Henrietta Maria left England in search of military support, visiting Holland and France

5 March: the Militia Ordinance was passed by Parliament

23 April: Charles was denied entrance to Hull

4 July: Parliament established a Committee of Safety

22 August: Charles raised his standard at Nottingham

23 September: Battle of Powick Bridge

23 October: Battle of Edgehill

13 November: Royal forces advancing on London were forced to turn back at Turnham Green and Charles had to pull back to Oxford


May: Peace negotiations held at Oxford failed

30 June: The Battle of Adwalton Moor

July: Royalists started their siege of Hull and Prince Rupert captured Bristol

September: The Earl of Essex relieved Gloucester and defeated the Royalists at Newbury, while the Houses of Parliament ratified Solemn League and Covenant

October: Parliamentarian forces broke Royalist siege

December: John Pym died


2 July: The Battle of Marston Moor

September: The Earl of Essex was trapped in Cornwall and was forced to surrender his entire force at Respryn Bridge

December: The Self-Denying Ordinance was introduced, although it was not passed until April 1645


January: The creation of the New Model Army began

14 June: The Battle of Naseby

10 July: The Battle of Langport, where Royalists were defeated

September: Prince Rupert was forced to surrender at Bristol


April: Charles surrendered to the Scots

June: Oxford surrendered and the Levellers demonstrated in London

July: Peace terms were offered to Charles at Newcastle


February: The Scots handed Charles over to Parliament and Parliament voted to disband the army

April: The army elected Agitators to represent their case to Parliament

31 May: Despite parliamentary orders, many regiments refused to disband

4 June: Charles I was seized by Cornet Joyce

5 June: The Army Engagement General Council was set up

July: A Royalist mob invaded Parliament, causing some MPs to flee

August: The army entered London and those MP’s who had fled Parliament returned

September: The army set up winter quarters in Putney

October: The Levellers published ‘Case of the Army’ and ‘Agreement of the People’, both of which were discussed by the Army Council at Putney

November: Charles escaped from captivity; the Putney debate ended as a result. A Leveller mutiny at Ware was easily crushed by Cromwell

December: Charles signed an ‘Engagement’ that invited the Scots to invade England


January: Parliament voted ‘No Further Addresses’ to Charles and the Army Council was disbanded

April: Uprisings against the government took place in Kent, Essex, Yorkshire South Wales and Cornwall

July: A Scottish army led by Royalist Scots entered England

August: Oliver Cromwell finally defeated the uprising in South Wales and fought the Scots at the Battle of Preston

September: The Second Civil War ended following Colchester’s surrender

November: Army Remonstrance demanded the trial of Charles I

5 December: The House of Commons voted to negotiate with Charles

6 December: Pride’s Purge of the House of Commons

7 December: Cromwell offered his support of the purge


1 January: A High Court of Justice was established to try Charles

20 January: the King’s trial opened

30 January: Charles executed

MLA Citation/Reference

"Timeline for the English Civil War". HistoryLearning.com. 2023. Web.