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Up the Levellers

Paul Foot, 8 December 1994

The New Model Army in England, Ireland and Scotland, 1645-53 
by Ian Gentles.
Blackwell, 590 pp., £14.99, January 1994, 0 631 19347 2
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... the Army had seethed with democratic ideas. The troops elected ‘agitators’: ‘at the time,’ Ian Gentles reassures his readers, ‘the word “agitator” had none of its modern pejorative ring, and meant simply one who had been empowered to act on behalf of others.’ There was, however, nothing remotely ‘simple’ about such a proposition. The ...

Maurice Thomson’s War

Perry Anderson, 4 November 1993

Merchants and Revolution: Commercial Change, Political Conflict and London’s Overseas Traders 1550-1653 
by Robert Brenner.
Cambridge, 734 pp., £40, March 1993, 0 521 37319 0
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TheNature of the English Revolution 
by John Morrill.
Longman, 466 pp., £32, June 1993, 0 582 08941 7
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... truer narratives, we have to move forward in time to historians – Underdown, Woolrych, Worden, Gentles – more sympathetic to the revolutionary experience itself, who have written the modern accounts of Pride’s Purge, the Putney Debates, the Rump or the New Model Army. But with the exception of the last, these still cover relatively brief ...

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