Cromwell's actions during his career seem confusing to us today. He supported Parliament against the King, yet he ordered his soldiers to break up parliament. Under his rule, the Protectorate said that people's religious beliefs should be respected, but people who went against what most people believed were sometimes tortured and imprisoned.
Cromwell was the first ruler of England to be a Puritan. He created a new model army. Many English people today think he was one of their greatest leaders, and many Irish people still hate him.
Cromwell started off as a gentleman from Huntingdon. He first studied at Huntingdon Grammar School. He had a bad relationship with his father. He went on to Sidney Sussex College at the University of Cambridge. This was a new, small college where he had the chance to talk about his new Puritan ideas. However, he never took a degree because his father died in 1617 while he was studying.