views updated May 29 2018

Interregnum is the name sometimes used for the period between the abolition of the monarchy in February 1649 and the Restoration of Charles II in May 1660. Royalists insisted that Charles II had become king as soon as his father was executed and his statutes were dated from 1649. The republican period is divided into the Commonwealth from 1649 to 1653, when power was exercised by the Rump Parliament and its Council of State, and the Protectorate from 1653 until 1659, when Oliver Cromwell and his son Richard were lords protector.

In Scotland, two interregna followed the death of Queen Margaret, the Maid of Norway, in September 1290. The first lasted until the nomination of John Balliol in November 1292. The second followed his deposition by Edward I in July 1296 and lasted until the coronation of Robert I, the Bruce, in March 1306. The disputed succession gave Edward I the chance to intervene and from 1296 to 1306 he governed Scotland himself.

J. A. Cannon


views updated May 21 2018

in·ter·reg·num / ˌintərˈregnəm/ • n. (pl. -nums or -na / -nə/ ) a period when normal government is suspended, esp. between successive reigns or regimes. ∎  an interval or pause: the interregnum between the discovery of radioactivity and its detailed understanding.


views updated May 11 2018

interregnum †temporary authority exercised during a vacancy; period intervening between a ruler and his successor. XVI. — L., f. INTER- + regnum REIGN.

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