The Return of Charles II, 29 May 1660

The History of Parliament

In today’s blog Dr Andrew Barclay, senior research fellow in our Commons 1640-1660 project, returns to his exploration of the days leading up to the restoration of Charles II. In this final instalment, we turn to 29 May 1660, as Charles entered London as King for the first time...

Charles II entered London in triumph on 29 May 1660, his 30th birthday. Three weeks earlier Parliament had proclaimed him as King. He had landed at Dover on 25 May and had made stops at Canterbury and Rochester en route to the capital. On 29 May he was greeted at St George’s Fields in Southwark by the lord mayor of London. The huge procession, mostly formed of the army, the London trained bands and the City worthies, crossed London Bridge and then proceeded through London to Whitehall. The parade took seven hours to pass through the City…

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