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William Laud

(1573-1645), Archbishop of Canterbury

Sitter associated with 61 portraits
The son of a Reading draper, Laud prospered under the patronage of the Duke of Buckingham and was appointed Archbishop of Canterbury in 1633. He supported the political and religious policies of Charles I and carried out Strafford's policy of 'Thorough' in ecclesiastical affairs, working for uniformity of doctrine and practice. His attempt to impose uniformity on the church provoked armed resistance in Scotland. Parliament impeached and imprisoned him in 1640-1 and he was beheaded in 1645.


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