Winston Churchill’s Divi Britannici (1675) and archipelagic royalism

Maley, W. and Stacey, R. (2022) Winston Churchill’s Divi Britannici (1675) and archipelagic royalism. Humanities, 11(5), 109. (doi: 10.3390/h11050109)

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Divi Britannici (1675) is a major restoration history that deserves to be more widely known. The work’s author, Sir Winston Churchill (1620-1688), is certainly less well-known than his celebrated descendant of the same name. Seldom mentioned in discussions of seventeenth-century historiography, Divi Britannici can be read alongside contemporary histories, including John Milton’s History of Britain (1670). If British historians have generally overlooked Divi Britannici then Churchill’s work did come to the notice of Michel Foucault, who recognized its arguments around conquest, rights and sovereignty as crucial to the development of political thought in the period. In this essay we excavate Churchill’s arguments, sift through the scattered critical legacy, and locate Divi Britannici both within the context of Restoration histories, with their warring interpretations of England and Britain’s past, and within a tradition of British historiography that associates monarchical rule with national stability. What scholars have missed, however, is the propensity of Churchill to align the restored Stuart monarchy with a form of ethnic co-operation between Scotland, Ireland and England, designed to counter the perceived divisions which were exacerbated by the policies of Cromwell and the parliamentarians.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Stacey, Dr Richard and Maley, Professor Willy
Creator Roles:
Maley, W.Writing – original draft, Writing – review and editing
Stacey, R.Writing – original draft, Writing – review and editing
Authors: Maley, W., and Stacey, R.
College/School:College of Arts & Humanities > School of Critical Studies > English Literature
Journal Name:Humanities
ISSN (Online):2076-0787
Published Online:01 September 2022
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2022 The Authors
First Published:First published in Humanities 11(5):109
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons license

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