regicides (rĕjˈĭsĪdz) [key] [Lat., = king-killers], in English history, name given to those judges and court officers responsible for the trial and execution of Charles I in 1649. After the Restoration (1660) of the monarchy they were excepted from the general pardon granted by the Act of Indemnity. At that time 41 of the 59 signers of the king's death warrant were still alive. Fifteen of them fled: William Goffe, John Dixwell, and Edward Whalley went to New England; several went to Germany and Holland; and Edmund Ludlow and four others went to Switzerland. Some were able to convince Charles II that they had had little to do with his father's trial and that they were loyal to the monarchy, and they were reprieved. Nine of those who signed the warrant and four others closely connected with the trial were hanged. Six others, who were deemed less politically dangerous, were imprisoned for life; some were later reprieved.
See C. V. Wedgwood, A Coffin for King Charles (1964); N. H. Mayfield, Puritans and Regicide (1988).
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
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