PRIDE, THOMAS (d. 1658), parliamentarian general in the English Civil War, is stated to have been brought up by the parish of St Bride's, London. Subsequently he was a drayman and a brewer. At the beginning of the Civil War he served as a captain under the earl of Essex, and was gradually promoted to the rank of colonel. He distinguished himself at the battle of Preston, and with his regiment took part in the military occupation of London in December 1648, which was the first step towards bringing the king to trial. The second was the expulsion of the Presbyterian and Royalist elements In the House of Commons, for which Pride is chiefly remembered. This, resolved by the army council and ordered by the lord general, Fairfax, was carried out by Colonel Pride's regiment. Taking his stand at the entrance of the House of Commons with a written list in his hand, he caused the arrest or exclusion of the obnoxious members, who were pointed out to him. After about a hundred members had been thus dealt with (" Pride's Purge "), the mutilated House of Commons proceeded to bring the king to trial. Pride was one of the judges of the king and signed his death-warrant, appending to his signature a seal showing a coat of arms. He commanded an infantry brigade under Cromwell at Dunbar and Worcester. He took no conspicuous part in Commonwealth politics, except in opposing the proposal to confer the kingly dignity on Cromwell. He was knighted by the Protector in 1656, and was also chosen a member of the new House of Lords. He died at Nonsuch House, an estate which he had bought in Surrey, on the 23rd of October 1658. After the Restoration his body was ordered to be dug up and suspended on the gallows at Tyburn along with those of Cromwell, Ireton and Bradshaw, though it is said that the execution of this sentence was evaded.
Noble, Lives of the Regicides; Bate, Lives of the Prime Actors and Principal Contrivers of the Murder of Charles I. ; Carlyle, Cromwell's Letters and Speeches.
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)