Wednesday, 15 June 2011
A DINNER PARTY WITH OLIVER CROMWELL
I had Oliver Cromwell and his charming family over for tea recently. All I can say is the academics have it all wrong because the man is a perfect dote. He was charming, witty and urbane. I was a little provocative in my choice of table linen but it didn't knock a spot off the old boy, he said nothing about it and wanted only to discuss the latest episode of Desperate Housewives while he dined on the feast of roast witch and gruel I had prepared (it's the Lord Protector's favourite you know.)
As the evening wore on I suggested they sit still and allow me catch the moment with my faithful dip pen and brush. They all warmly complied and you can see the results above. That's Olly at the head of the table (sucking on a rib,) to his left sits his wife Elizabeth (she was rather quiet I thought) and winsome daughter Bridget. On his right is his son in law Henry Ireton (who I felt was somewhat boorish, he spent the whole evening making farting noises with his armpit.)
We finished the meal by administering a good flogging to each other (as is the fashion among puritans) and they departed floating softly into the midnight sky.
Did you know royalist thugs dug Olly up after he died and hung his corpse from a tree? They did too!
He still hasn't forgiven them for it - and I don't blame him.