The county of Surrey and the English Revolution.
The aim of this thesis is to provide a study of
political conflict and local-national relations during the
English Revolution, in the context of the county of Surrey, a
county in which a moderate parliamentarian administration was
able to survive until 1649. The thesis concentrates in
particular on political developments in the period from 1640
The character of local society in Surrey before 1640 is
examined in Chapter One, as are relations between the Surrey
gentry and the government of Charles I. The importance of
localism is emphasised, despite the cosmopolitan nature of
society in the county.
Political and religious developments in Surrey between
the autumn of 1640 and the, end of 1642 are examined in Chapter
Three; Chapter Four provides a study of patterns of civil war
allegiance in the county. In Chapters Five and Six, political
conflicts from 1642 to 1646 are studied, and in particular the
campaign to remove Sir Richard Onslow and his associates from
their dominant position in local administration. It is argued
that parliament's sensitivity to localism helped to ensure
Onslow's political survival during the 1640's.
The Surrey petitioning movement of 1648, the Earl of
Holland's rising, and local reactions to the establishment of
the Commonwealth in 1649, are discussed in Chapter Six, The
final chapter provides a study of the Surrey Digger movement,
and of social conflict in the county during the civil war and
after. Although it is clear that the Diggers met with
considerable opposition in Walton, it is suggested that there
was some sympathy for them in Cobham, and that they should not
be dismissed as outsiders in that parish.