Commonwealth Age (in English literature)
Commonwealth Age (in English literature): Also known as the Puritan Interregnum (literally, “between reigns”), an age often classified as the last of five literary eras within the Renaissance Period in English literature. The Commonwealth Age began with the beheading of King Charles I in 1649 and ended with the restoration of the Stuart monarchy via the coronation of Charles II in 1660. During the interregnum, England was ruled by a Puritan-dominated Parliament led first by Oliver Cromwell (Lord Protector, 1653—58) and then briefly by his son Richard Cromwell (Lord Protector, 1658—59).
Writers of prose and nondramatic poetry dominated the literary arena during the Commonwealth Age. Prose writers of the epoch include Thomas Hobbes, Jeremy Taylor, Izaac Walton, and John Milton, whose “Tenure of Kings and Magistrates” (1649) attempted to justify the execution of Charles I. Milton, a Puritan, was also one of the greatest poets of the era, although his major works (Paradise Lost  and Paradise Regained ) were published during the subsequent Restoration Age. Other noted poets of the interregnum include Abraham Cowley, Andrew Marvell, and Henry Vaughan. By contrast, playwrights of the era were constrained, due in part to the Parliament’s decision to close all theaters in 1642.