Regicides

 

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 REGICIDES, THE, a term applied to the judges who tried, condemned, and signed the death-warrant of Charles I. The same ship which brought to New England the news of the restoration of monarchy in Old England bore, also, Edward Whalley and William Goffe, high officers in Cromwell's army. Many of the "regicides" were arrested and executed. Whalley and his son-in-law (Goffe), with Col. John Dixwell, another "regicide," fled to America to save their lives. Whalley was descended from an ancient family, and was a cousin of Cromwell and Hampden. He had been the custodian of the royal prisoner, and he and Goffe had signed the King's death-warrant. They arrived in Boston in July, 1660, and made their abode at Cambridge. They were speedily followed by a proclamation of Charles II. offering a liberal reward for their arrest. The King also sent officers to arrest them and take them back to England. Feeling insecure at Cambridge, the "regicides" fled to New Haven, where the Rev. Mr. Davenport and the citizens generally did what they could to protect them. Learning that their pursuers were near, they hid in caves, in clefts of rocks, in mills, and other obscure places, where their friends supplied their wants. There is still to be seen in New Haven the cave, known as " the Judges' Cave," wherein they took refuge from the King's officers. Finally, in 1664, they went to Hadley, Mass., where they remained, in absolute seclusion, in the house of Rev. Mr. Russell, for about fifteen years. Dixwell was with Whalley and Golfe most of the time until they died—the former in 1678, and the latter in 1679—and were buried at New Haven. Dixwell lived at New Haven under the assumed name of James Davids. He was twice married, leaving three children. He died in New Haven, March 18, 1689, in the eighty-second year of his age. In the burying-ground in the rear of the Central Church small stones, with brief inscriptions, mark the graves of the three "regicides." See GOFFE, WILLIAM; WHALLEY, EDWARD.

 

 

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