England: Committees of Safety: 1659-1660

Members of the Committee of Safety (I)
7 May 1659 - 19 May 1659 Charles Fleetwood
7 May 1659 - 19 May 1659 Sir Arthur Hesilrige, baronet (or Haselrig)
7 May 1659 - 19 May 1659 Sir Henry Vane, Jr.
7 May 1659 - 19 May 1659 Edmund Ludlow
7 May 1659 - 19 May 1659 William Sydenham
7 May 1659 - 19 May 1659 Richard Salwey
7 May 1659 - 19 May 1659 John Jones
9 May 1659 - 19 May 1659 John Lambert
9 May 1659 - 19 May 1659 John Desborough (or Disbrowe)
9 May 1659 - 19 May 1659 James Berry
9 May 1659 - 19 May 1659 Thomas Scot
Members of the Committee of Safety (II)
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 Sir Henry Vane, Jr.
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 Bulstrode Whitelock (or Whitelocke)
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 Williamm Sydenham
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 John Lambert
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 James Berry
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 Sir Archibald Johnston, Lord Warriston (Lord of Session)
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 Edmund Ludlow
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 Richard Salwey
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 John Desborough (or Disbrowe)
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 Charles Fleetwood
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 Sir James Harrington
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 William Steele
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 Walter Strickland
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 Henry Laurence (or Lawrence)
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 John Ireton
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 Robert Tichborne
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 Henry Brandrith
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 Tobert Thomson
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 John Hewson
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 John Clerk (or Clark)
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 Robert Lilburne
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 Robert Bennet
25 Oct 1659 - 23 Dec 1659 Cornelius Holland
History:
First Committee of Safety (1659)

The first Committee of Safety was appointed on 7 May 1659 by the Parliament, which convened in response to the officers' declaration announced in the course of a coup (6 May 1659). The 7-member Committee took over from the Protectorate Council of State and exercised executive authority. Four members including General Lambert were added by the Parliament to the original seven members on 9 May 1659. The Parliament twice extended [2, pp. 652-658] the term of the Committee (14 May 1659, 18 May 1659), which continued to hold meetings until the new Council of State was nominated (13, 14, 16 May 1659) by the Rump and constituted itself on 19 May 1659.

Second Committee of Safety (1659-1660)

The second Committee of Safety emerged as a result of dissolution of the Rump Parliament (13 Oct 1659) by the military officers led by General Lambert. Since the Parliament was dissolved and the Council of State ceased to sit, the 23-member Committee of Safety was the highest authority of the Commonwealth for almost two months. Before the Committee was set up, General Monck sent a declaration from Scotland demanding the return of the Rump (20 Oct 1659) and in December crossed the English border threatening to march south with his army. Following the advancement of the Monck's troops, Charles Fleetwood restored the power of the Rump, which convened again on 26 Dec 1659. The Monck's army arrived in London on 3 Feb 1660.


[1] "The Lord Fleetwood, Sir Arthur Hesilrigge, Sir Henry Vane, Lieutenant-General Ludlow, Colonel Sydenham, Major Salwey, and Colonel John Jones, or any Four or more of them, are hereby made a Committee of Safety, with full Power to take especial and effectual Care of the Preservation of the Peace and Safety of this Commonwealth; and that all Officers, Soldiers, and Ministers of Justice, give due Obedience to the Orders of the said Committee: And the said Committee are to sit at such Times and Places as they, in their Discretion, shall think fit: And are to continue for the Space of Eight Days, and no longer." [2, p. 646]
[2] "The Journal of the House of Commons", Volume VII.
Last updated on: 13 Mar 2010 01:47:03