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Constructing the Past

Publication Date

Spring 2008

Abstract

Oliver Cromwell was not born a genius like Napoleon and was well into the latter half of his unimpressive and quiet life by the time he was elected to the Long Parliament. Despite this, in slightly over a decade Cromwell became the strongest person in England. His rise to the top involved many steps and Cromwell never seemed to lose momentum on his way up. Yet he was not a political mastermind. He was not always successful in bringing about his desired results, and he did not show consistently great political abilities that one would think would be necessary to become Lord Protector of England. This raises the question of why Cromwell was able to rise to the top from obscurity in merely thirteen years, and how much of this was because of his abilities, and how much was through luck and position.

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