Radio 4 Real Dictators

Jings and crivens, a bonus post on a not-Monday. Be still my beating heart.

Once again the leading British talk radio station dips its toe in the preserve of North Derbyshire's premier Civil War blog.

Cromwell's Statue at Parliament

BBC Radio 4 has a series on dictators. Four of the latest batch of episodes cover Lord Protector, Oliver Cromwell. So just shy of 3 1/2 hours on such issues as the origin of the story of his abduction by a monkey as a baby.

I've not ploughed my way through the three episodes currently available, but what I've listened to so far is very good, balanced and accurate. 

Just ignore the inevitable gaffs such as the description of regiments of foot at Edgehill at the start of episode 2; the description of Boye; Rupert's lobsters; and that old nugget of Cromwell banning Christmas.

A reasonably balanced 'take' on a very divisive figures; my only real issue is with the image the series paints of the Army Newly Modelled. Whilst the New Model Army do have a very dubious history, in a period that harboured far too many unsavoury groups and incidents, portraying them as goose stepping blitzkrieg troops is unnecessary.

You can find episode 1 here. The BBC Sounds app should automatically open the following episodes.

The series will be available online until mid April 2025.

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