Waller, William (Sir)

 Born  1597   Born At  
 Died  1668   Buried At  
Important Parliamentarian leader and general during the early years of the English Civil War and later a member of Parliament. Waller was the son of Sir Thomas Waller, lieutenant of Dover, and he married into a wealthy Devonshire family. He enjoyed success in the early years of the English Civil War and in 1645 ended his military activities to become a Politician where he represented the Scots' Presbyterian faction.


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Early Modern Period (1500-1800)
1643 Mar 24  46yrsWaller gets Royalist surrender
 Sir William Waller crossed the River Severn and surprised a garrison of Royalist soldiers. The soldiers were without a commander and were not prepared. The Royalist cavalry fled while the infantry surrendered.[1] 
 Apr 13  Battle of Ripple Field
 Prince Maurice, younger brother of Prince Rupert, defeated Sir William Waller at Ripple Field near Worcester. 
 Jul 5  Battle of Lansdowne Hill
 This battle was fought along a steep sided ridge near Bath. The Parliamentarians were led by Waller. The Royalists were led by Sir Ralph Hopton and Sir Bevil Grenville. Waller took advantage of the high ground and the Royalist suffered serious casualties as a consequence. The Royalists managed to reach the top of the hill and Waller moved his men back behind a defensive wall. Waller waited until the dark of night then moved his army off the battlefield. Sir Bevil Grenville was killed in the fighting and the day after the battle Hopton was seriously injured, suffering temporary blindness, when an ammunitions cart exploded.[2] 
 Jul 10  Royalists cornered at Devizes
 The Royalists were badly affected by the injuries suffered at Lansdowne Hill especially when Hopton was injured by the ammunitions explosion. Waller took advantage of the Royalist army's weakened state and chased them to Devizes where they took refuge.[2] 
 Jul 13  Battle of Roundway Down
 Once Charles learnt that Hopton was being held at Devizes, he sent Wilmot to meet up with Prince Maurice and put together a Royalist army to free the town. The Royalists and Parliamentarians met at Roundway Down just north of Devizes. Wilmot was able to drive the Parliamentarians back towards the top of a steep slope where, as the Parliament army fell, many were killed. The slope is now known as Bloody Ditch.[2] 
 Dec 20  Arundel Castle Siege
 Parliamentarian cannons pound Arundel Castle where Royalist forces were un siege. William Waller controlled the attacking Parliamentarian army. 
1644 Mar 29  47yrsBattle of Cheriton
 Parliamentary forces lead by William Waller defeated the Royalists lead by Lord Hopton and the Earl of Forth at Cheriton in Hampshire.[3] 
 May  Advance on Oxford
 William Waller and the Earl of Essex were advancing on Oxford where the King was staying. The King had to remove his men from Reading and Abingdon so that an army could be raised to meet the threat. The King left Oxford leaving a garrison to protect the city and fled to Worcester. Essex ignored the King and took his army south where Lyme Regis was under attack. Waller was left to pursue the King.[3] 
 Jun 29  Battle of Cropredy Bridge
 With the Earl of Essex out of the way and the Parliamentary forces divided, the King turned to face William Waller. The two armies met at Cropredy Bridge on the River Cherwell in Oxfordshire. The King's army defeated the badly organised Parliamentary forces.[3] 
 Oct 27  Second battle of Newbury
 Charles I met Parliamentary forces led by the Earl of Manchester and William Waller at Newbury. A disjointed attack by Manchester and Waller on different fronts failed to defeat the Royalist army but it was enough to leave Charles' position in peril so the King retreated and during the night his army was able to evade Manchester's outposts and escape towards Wallingford.[3] 
1645 Mar  48yrsCromwell rejoins his army
 The west of England was under attack from the Royalist Western army commanded by Goring. The New Model Army was not ready and so Parliament ordered Cromwell to rejoin his regiment and to meet up with Waller. This went against the Self-Denying Ordinance under which Cromwell should have given up his command, but without his leadership Cromwell's regiment had become ill disciplined and mutinous. This was reversed when he again took command.[3] 

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