Bulstrode Whitelock

Bulstrode Whitelock

Bulstrode Whitelock was born in 1605. He worked as a lawyer before being elected to the House of Commons as representative for Marlow in Buckinghamshire.

Whitelock, a Puritan, was an opponent of Charles I and chaired the committee that prosecuted Thomas Wentworth, Earl of Strafford. Although a moderate, his friendship with Oliver Cromwell, stopped him being a victim of Pride's Purge in December, 1648.

Whitelock was against the trial and execution of Charles I. Bulstrode Whitelock, the author of Memorials of English Affairs 1625-1660, died in 1676.

Primary Sources

(1) Bulstrode Whitelock, Memorials of English Affairs (c. 1660)

The Women Petitioners again attended at the door of the House for an answer to their Petition concerning Lilburne and the rest. The House sent them this answer by the Sergeant: 'That the Matter they petitioned about was of an higher concernment than they understood, that the House gave an answer to their husbands, and therefore desired them to go home, and look after their own business, and meddle with their housewifery.

(2) Bulstrode Whitelock wrote about the execution of the Leveller, Robert Lockyer, on 26th April, 1649.

About one hundred went before the Corpse, five or six in a file; the Corpse was then brought, with six trumpets sounding a soldier's knell; then the Trooper's horse came, clothed all over in mourning and led by a footman. The corpse was adorned with bundles of Rosemary, one half stained in blood; and the Sword of the deceased along with them. Some thousands followed in rank and file: all had sea-green-and-black Ribbon tied on their hats, and to their breasts: and the women brought up the rear. At the new Churchyard in Westminster, some thousands more of the better sort met them, who thought not fit to march through the City. Many looked on this funeral as an affront to the Parliament and the Army; others called these people Levellers; but they took no notice of any of them.