By August Cromwell had backtracked to Dunbar. As the Scots followed, Convening ministers dismissed from among them any who did not meet their godly standards. Least Satisfactory were the professional soldiers, most of whom were told to leave, and Leslie's force dropped by 5000. leaving what was described by an appalled officer as "an army of clerks and ministers sons".
Even so, by September Cromwell's men were pushed up against the sea at Dunbar with no signs of supplies, and with their premium position on Doon Hill above, the Scots had only to wait for the already weak enemy surrender.
Patience was not among the fervent ministers' virtues.
Ignoring Leslie and knowing nothing of military tactics, they sent his twenty thousand men down the hill. It was the consumate military blunder. Three thousand were killed and ten thousand captured.
Edinburgh Castle belonged to Cromwell by December.