Gene Expression By Razib Khan June 16, 2007 10:10 PM. It is worth mentioning that David Cameron, like many Conservative leaders before him, had been under repeated pressure from the party’s Eurosceptic wing to either renegotiate, or at least reconsider, Britain’s membership in the European Union. 4Therefore, it is perhaps not particularly surprising to see some commentators refer to the current state of affairs in British politics, between constitutional uncertainty in Whitehall and plotting behind the scenes in Westminster, in Civil War-era terms. 6The referendum and subsequent debates surrounding the validity of the “Brexit” process have led to a growing divide in the way complex legal, political questions are envisaged by modern-day “Roundheads” and “Cavaliers”. On February 1st, 2017, the EU Notification of Withdrawal Bill was passed quite comfortably in the House of Commons by a majority of 384, but a closer look at the voting tallies confirms the presence of divergent views not only on the question of Brexit but also on MPS’ role as representatives both of a political party and of a constituency. Follow our English Civil War timeline, which charts events that led up to the brutal uprising and the aftermath. 22 November 1641 Proposed by John Pym, leader of the Long Parliament, a list of grievances against King Charles I known as the Grand Remonstrance is passed by Parliament. Therefore, the use of the “Roundhead” and “Cavalier” allegories by several journalists in recent months go beyond the desire to write witty think pieces under catchy headlines and point to a true constitutional crisis brought about by Brexit. This list could be expanded to include the Acts of Union (1707 and 1800), which created the United Kingdom as a country composed of different nations, and various other statutes which had an impact on the monarchy (Act of Settlement 1701, or even the Succession to the Crown Act 2013), on the separation of powers in the United Kingdom (Government of Scotland Act 1998, Constitutional Reform Act 2005) or on the people’s rights (Representation of the People Act 1832, Human Rights Act 2000). Therefore, any issue related to the UK’s membership in the European Union is to fall under the purview of constitutional law and entails a discussion about the flexible nature of the British Constitution. Consequently, Theresa May has recently faced repeated calls to step down, even more increasingly so since her gamble to call a snap election in June 2017 to strengthen her majority in Parliament backfired spectacularly, much like Cameron’s referendum. Even prior to 1689, the Case of Proclamations3 (1610) had established that the Monarch could only legislate through Parliament. Some differences between the round-heads and the Cavaliers are that the cavaliers supported the King and the round-heads supported Parliament. Report a problem. In his lashing editorial,9 editor James Slack (who has, since then, been appointed as Theresa May’s personal spokesperson) further lambasted the three judges for being “out of touch” with the pro-Brexit people, and for “declaring war on democracy”. Yet the binding nature of the EU referendum remained (and remains to this day) a matter of dispute. 1Throughout the campaign for the United Kingdom’s European Union membership referendum, most arguments relied on divergent views of the nature of the European Union : the “Remain” camp saw the EU as a blessing for the UK and a chance for further collaboration with the continent, while, on the other hand, “Brexiters” depicted the EU as an ever-growing “leviathan” with deep-reaching powers imposing an unnecessary drag on the UK’s finances. 101: “In light of the terms and effect of the 1972 Act, and subject to considering the effect of subsequent legislation and events, the prerogative could not be invoked by ministers to justify giving Notice: ministers require the authority of primary legislation before they can take that course”. 2On June 23rd, 2016, 51.9 % of those who voted chose to leave the European Union, triggering David Cameron’s resignation as Prime Minister. All three newspapers accused the High Court of creating a constitutional crisis, although the latter was brought about long before the judges’ decision due to the unprecedented nature of the withdrawal process. How can I re-use this? Author: Created by benjaminobaker2. That’s enough dullness, we’re the Cavalier crew Supporting King Charles and everything that he’ll do. 22 August 1642 Charles declares war on Parliament by raising his standard in Nottingham. 78 likes. 30 January 1649 King Charles I is executed at Banqueting House in Whitehall, having been tried for high treason in Westminster Hall. However, power struggles between the Monarch and Parliament (and their respective supporters) carried on throughout the 17th century and led to the Civil War, when Roundheads advocated the authority of Parliament while the Cavaliers staunchly defended Charles I’s powers. EDITORIAL Bundle. Were they to follow the majority of “Leave” or “Remain” votes in their own constituencies or simply acknowledge the popular vote nationwide ? However, the issue of sovereignty is intricately connected to the long-standing divergent opinions about Europe within the Conservative party, which means that the opposition between “Roundheads” and “Cavaliers” is not only a feature of Theresa May’s Britain ; it has been raging for decades. Fought between 1642–1651, the English Civil War saw King Charles I (1600–1649) battle Parliament for control of the English government. Subject to any restrictions imposed by primary legislation, the general rule is that the power to make or unmake treaties is exercisable without legislative authority”. Over the past few months, a handful of journalists have taken to calling officials on either side of the Brexit divide “Roundheads” or “Cavaliers”.1 The former, as advocates of the constitutional principle of Parliamentary sovereignty, argue that only Parliament has the authority to steer the UK out of the EU, while the latter object that such a policy decision should fall under the government’s Crown prerogatives and require no assent from Parliament. You can sign in to give your opinion on the answer. Natasha Syed Mulholland, G., “Statement on my position on the vote on Article 50”,, 31 January 2016,, last retrieved 17 November 2017. 10 UK Parliament, “European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill, Division 135”. As the article’s author suggests, “the issue, then as now, was sovereignty”, with the leadership of the Conservative party at stake and rival factions in motion. One of the earliest articles using the “Roundheads versus Cavaliers” metaphor to describe the current state of the Tory party indeed pre-dates the EU referendum,17 and likens then-Prime Minister David Cameron to Charles I, supported by his Cavaliers, opposed to the Eurosceptic Roundheads led by Iain Duncan Smith in the role of Oliver Cromwell. Dennis Compton, Ted Dexter, Bobbie Moore and Freddie Truman(?) Learn Cavaliers and Roundheads with free interactive flashcards. Receive the latest news, practical advice, videos and competitions in a monthly email put together by the magazine’s editorial team. 16 December 1653 Oliver Cromwell declares himself Lord Protector. If you enjoy finding out more about our country’s rich history, then you’ll love BRITAIN magazine – the official magazine for VisitBritain. They were usually rich nobles and landowners. 21All in all, the highly polarising nature of the debate surrounding Brexit and the constitutional uncertainties highlighted by the legal challenges pertaining to the Article 50 procedure led members of Parliament to call into question their own function and to express different conceptions of their loyalties, more precisely whether the latter should lie with their constituents, the national popular vote as expressed in the referendum, or with their parties’ voting instructions. Due to the relative vagueness of statute law in England and Wales, judges have been known for centuries to hold a large (and necessary) power of statutory interpretation. 7 [2017] UKSC 5, para. For the best answers, search on this site The lack of consensus around its very definition has led to dissent being expressed within most mainstream political parties, echoing the way it has also divided the nation beyond traditional partisan lines. 5 Pannick, D., “Why giving notice of withdrawal from the EU requires an act of Parliament”, The Times, 30 June 2016. 5The clearest example of the constitutional nature of the issue was highlighted in a straightforward manner by the legal challenge brought to the courts by Gina Miller against the UK government,2 arguing that the decision to invoke Article 50 of the Treaty of Lisbon was part of Parliament’s, not the government’s, prerogatives. Cavaliers. So I voted for the Cavaliers, while recognizing that I would probably have supported the parliamentary side. 23However, the referendum backfired spectacularly, and David Cameron was ironically pushed out of Downing Street by the very measure which was supposed to protect him from challenges to his leadership by the Eurosceptics, whose influence within the Conservative party remains, to this day, a thorn in Theresa May’s side. About this resource. 1 The former, as advocates of the constitutional principle of Parliamentary sovereignty, argue that only Parliament has the authority to steer the UK out of the EU, while the latter object that such a policy decision should fall under the government’s Crown … Created: Jul 2, 2018 | Updated: Oct 4, 2019. This criticism is not, however, particularly new. The first few months of her term in office have proven all the more difficult as the unprecedented nature of Brexit has led to high-profile legal challenges in the courts, especially in R (on the application of Miller) v Secretary of State for leaving the European Union. King during the English Civil War. docx, 134 KB. It’s not a political or cultural issue as much as it is a spiritual issue. Cavaliers Cavalier refers to the ideals of feudal knighthood. As all three branches of the government (legislative, executive, and judicial, with the High Court and Supreme Court weighing in on the issue) became involved, the respective powers of each branch were consequently thrown into the spotlight and are still today the crux of many debates, from the representative function of MPs to the role of judges considering the challenge Brexit is causing to the structure of legal sources in the UK. As an expat from a different time, I presume Len Hutton, Jim Laker, Bobby Charlton and Peter May would be Roundheads. Click the button below to download this worksheet for use in the classroom or at home. As the saying goes, the Cavaliers were wrong but romantic, whilst the the Roundheads were right but repulsive. However, realising they have been tipped off and have gone, he laments, “I see the birds have flown.”. 21 November 2001 • 00:00 am . The fight between hard Brexiters like Iain Duncan Smith or Michael Gove and pro-“Remain” Tories (like Kenneth Clarke, Dominic Grieve and Anna Soubry) rages on, thereby propagating the ancient, pre-Brexit opposition between Eurosceptic and Euro-friendly Tories, more than one year after the referendum. • To know how soldiers fought in the Civil War and what they looked like. Later known as the ‘Short Parliament’, it is dissolved after just three weeks. 14 Greg Mulholland, “Statement on my position on the vote on Article 50”. Progressives vs Traditionalists acting out The North vs The South or Roundheads vs Cavaliers Parliamentary troops were known as Roundheads because of their severe hairstyle. At first glance, this argument might appear to hold water, especially when one considers the recent constitutional reforms enacted by Parliament to establish a clear separation of powers between the judicial and legislative branches, both of which used to be in the hands of the House of Lords until the Constitutional Reform Act 2005 created a separate Supreme Court (though former Law Lords still sit in the court today). Roundheads and Cavaliers - a comedy short film. However, the debate surrounding the legal challenge helped bring into focus several constitutional issues linked, among others, to the separation of powers. 27While the EU referendum may have been designed as a short-term solution to the long-term problem of Eurosceptic rebellion within the Conservative party, the “mutiny” is likely to outlast Brexit itself because the issue of Europe has been, and will remain, the crux of many a debate surrounding not only the issue of sovereignty among the Tories, but also the focal point of several layers of polarising matters such as immigration, the economy, the Constitution and the very fabric of British identity. This fight between supporters of the principle of Parliamentary sovereignty, as opposed to the government’s, has encouraged several observers to describe Britain’s current political situation in Civil War-era terms, as “Roundheads versus Cavaliers”. 4 January 1642 Charles arrives at the Houses of Parliament to arrest Pym and four other rebels. Swinford, S., “The Brexit Mutineers : At least 15 Tory MPs rebel against leave date with threat to join forces with Labour”, The Daily Telegraph, 14 November 2017,, last retrieved 17 November 2017. At the start of the war Charles had better horsemen. CLICK TO DOWNLOAD. In other words, according to this “Roundhead” approach, only Parliament can undo what Parliament has done. David Cameron did end up campaigning for the “Remain” side of the referendum but his decision to let this referendum happen allowed him to rein in, albeit for a short period, the Eurosceptic wing and appear in control of his own party. The country is forced to choose between two camps: Royalists (known as Cavaliers) and Parliamentarians (known as Roundheads). October 1641 An uprising by Catholics in Ireland, which results in the deaths of many English and Scottish Protestant settlers, exacerbates the sense of unease already bubbling away in the country. Stuarts - SOW - Scheme - 11 Lessons. 24Whether the metaphor is borrowed from the Civil War era or from a mutiny, the theme of rebellion in the Conservative party has been rife for many years. 15 September 1643 Royalists agree a ceasefire with Irish Catholics. The first answer is so very wrong; it takes a ton of artifical lubricant to eliminate the friction with a circumcised penis. In the summer of 2016, when the EU referendum’s results forced David Cameron out of Downing Street, Theresa May took over as PM with the task of seeing the United Kingdom through the withdrawal process. First, until the referendum, the “Remain” campaign, led by the Prime Minister, held the view that defeat was quite unlikely, so no contingency plans seem to have been drawn up. If the Civil War-era metaphor is to be applied, then Theresa May and a large part of the Conservative government of the day adopt a stance similar to that of the Cavaliers of the 1640s in their belief that Parliamentary authority can be circumvented and transferred to an individual (whether in the hands of the Stuart-era monarch or of today’s Prime Minister). The court’s judgment, by a majority of eight to three, was delivered on January 24th, 2017 by Lord Neuberger. The Justices remained on the side of constitutional consistency in this time of uncertainty. June 1642 Members of the House of Lords and House of Commons issue the Nineteen Propositions – the outline of a new constitution – in a bid to reach a settlement with Charles. would be Cavaliers Despite Corbyn’s orders, a fifth of all Labour MPs (47 out of 229, including Heidi Alexander, former Shadow Secretary of State for Health, and Ben Bradshaw, former Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport) voted against the bill.11 However, a large majority of opposition MPs diligently followed the line imposed by their leader although they might have been prominent figures in the “Remain” campaign or despite the fact that their constituencies had voted in favour of remaining in the EU in the referendum. Finally, and perhaps above all, the “Roundhead v Cavaliers” metaphor may also be aptly applied to the divided state of the Conservative party. Ironically, the referendum on the UK’s membership in the EU, designed to rein in the Eurosceptic wing of the party under David Cameron, has failed to meet its goal and has left Theresa May facing similar -- or even increased -- challenges to her leadership. 27 April 1646 A disguised King Charles escapes from Oxford and surrenders himself to Scottish forces at Newark. Download → Lesson Objectives: • To understand which sections of society supported each side in the Civil War. On November 3rd, the Daily Mail ran a bewildering front page, featuring the pictures of all three High Court judges – Lord Chief Justice Thomas, Lord Justice Sales, and Sir Terence Etherton – under the headline “Enemies of the people”. He had a Roman Catholic wife, Henrietta de Maria of France. 2 R (on the application of Miller and Dos Santos) v Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, [2017] UKSC 5; [2016] EWHC 2768. In many respects, the notions of Parliamentary supremacy and the government’s role within it had already been under scrutiny on several occasions in the 20th century, not least in Lord Hailsham’s Dimbleby lecture on the theme of “elective dictatorship” in 1976.4 However, the latter described a situation in which the government controls an efficient majority in the House of Commons and has no trouble passing legislation, which is far from being the case given the very short majority currently commanded by the Conservatives. On the other hand, the cavaliers supported the King Charles I and Charles II of England. These issues, along with some other factors, led to a fierce war that raged on English soil for years. Natasha Foges 8The British Constitution is indeed quite different in nature to that of the European Union or of many of its member states, in that it does not consist of one single document. The Progressive crazies making war on white males today are the spiritual descendents of those Roundheads, who executed King Charles. Created: Feb 16, 2020. pptx, 411 KB. Electoral Commission, “EU Referendum Results”, 2016., last retrieved 17 November 2017. docx, 134 KB. Slack, J., “Fury over High Court judges who defied Brexit voters and could trigger constitutional crisis”, Daily Mail, 3 November 2016,, last retrieved 17 November 2017. 29 May 1660 Charles II is restored to the English throne.