Monday, 30 July 2012

Famous Dreamers - Oliver Cromwell's 'Greatest Man in England' Dream

English military and political leader, Oliver Cromwell (1599-1658), overthrew the monarchy and turned England into a republican Commonwealth. He was then instated as Lord Protector of the Commonwealth. An intensely religious man - a self-styled Puritan Moses - he fervently believed God was guiding his victories.

Cromwell believed that his political rise was delivered to him as a young man in a dream. Although he stated that at the time the premonition took place, he was not sure what it meant.

Cromwell said he dreamt that a massive female figure approached his bed and drew back the curtains. This figure then informed him that one day in the future he would be the “greatest man in England”.

Cromwell said the dream was extremely vivid but puzzled him because in his reckoning the greatest man in England was the King. However, the female figure had made no mention of him becoming King. Years later, in 1648, after a bloody English Civil War (fighting on the side of the ‘Roundheads’ or ‘Parliamentarians’ against the ‘Cavaliers’ or ‘Royalists’), Cromwell signed the death warrant of the then King, Charles I. The document led to the King’s execution for “high treason” and Cromwell, by virtue of being the signatory and obtaining the title of Lord Protector of England, Scotland and Ireland, had now obtained the title that the female figure in his dream said he would.

The large female figure is perhaps symbolic of the Mother Land, otherwise known as England, whilst the parting the curtains could be metaphoric of an unveiling of the future

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