‘The Christian Centurion’ – Sergeant-Major-General Philip Skippon

Sergeant-Major General Phillip Skippon was described by an earlier biographer, Lucas Phillips, as “… the type of man found in the best British armies throughout the centuries – not over-endowed with brains, but stout of heart, loyal of spirit, direct of speech, generous to a fault, God-fearing, the first into action and the last out of it.”

But as Skippon’s latest biographer, Dr Ismini Pells of the University of Oxford shows, this is only part of his story.

Skippon became the third most senior general in the New Model Army – after Sir Thomas Fairfax and Oliver Cromwell. He was the longest serving parliamentarian military commander of the civil wars. But, as Dr Pells shows, his contributions reached well beyond the battlefield.  During the Republic and the Protectorate Skippon was a senior and highly influential political figure, whose importance has subsequently been overshadowed by Cromwell.

So, as Dr Pells says, we need to bring Skippon out of the shadows and restore him to his rightful position at the heart of the Republican experiment of the mid-seventeenth century.

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The World Turned Upside Down
The World Turned Upside Down - The British Civil Wars 1638-1651
‘The Christian Centurion’ - Sergeant-Major-General Philip Skippon
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Ismini Pells

Ismini Pells

Project manager of the Civil War Petitions Project

Dr Ismini Pells is the project manager of the Civil War Petitions Project in the Department for Continuing Education at the University of Oxford. Her research interests…

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