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Oliver Cromwell (1599-1658), Lord Protector of England

Sitter associated with 223 portraits
A country gentleman who became a soldier, statesman and finally Lord Protector of Great Britain. As MP for Huntingdon and then Cambridge, he was an outspoken critic of Charles I. His military skills and God-fearing tenacity were decisive factors in the Parliamentarian victory in the civil wars, and he was prominent among those who first treated with, and then executed the King in 1649. He achieved military success in Ireland in 1649 - but carried out brutal massacres. He led the New Model Army to victory against the Scots and Charles II in 1651. Emerged as a head of state when the 'Rump' Parliament was dissolved in 1653, and created Lord Protector. He refused the crown in 1657, dying in 1658.