Journal of the House of Commons: Volume 1, 1547-1629. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1802.
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Veneris, 19 Martii
Van de Put's Nat.
Sir Edw. Sandys reports from the general Committee for Trade. - The Restraint of Trade argued at large. - Desire to have the House send Warning to all the Companies of London, to send Four of each Company, to attend at Two a Clock, Tuesday; and to be heard, why Restraint should not be enlarged.
And to have them set down the present State of Trade in their several Companies, of Increase or Decrease, since the last Parliament; and the Reasons of this, and of the Decay [of] Money, in Writing. - Ordered also. -
Sir Ben. Ridiard: - Doubts not but the King's Answer plainly understood, since he hath explained the most doubtful Parts; and that professed, that he is resolved in Conscience and Honour, that the Treaties may be broken.
- Will require our Advice. - An Addition of Honour to us. Expects Assistance from us: Confesses our general Grant more than Millions of Subsides. - A Fountain never dry : A particular Sum but a Cistern. Yet he knows that Generals dwell too much in the Air; and thereupon hath made a Demand : Quitted his own Particular, and let it go to the Publick. The Demand great, but desires not to have it presently levied, but declared. -
To fall to those Particulars necessary: The securing of Ireland, strengthening our Forts, setting out a Fleet, assisting the Low Countries. 10,000. - 40,000 to Ireland: Twenty King's Ships, and twenty other. A great Part of this spent in this. - To make a round Offer to his Majesty. - The Manner he leaves to others, that have been longer conversant in Parliament. - May so limit the Time, that no great Burthen to the Subjects. -
Sir Jo. Elliot: - Included in so narrow a Strait: - The present Necessities of the one Side, and the future Inconveniencies of the other. Of Evils to chuse the least. - Much dejected at first, of his Majesty's Answer: But since being resolved by the Prince his Highness. - How far these Treaties have been prejudicial, too apparent. Not their Force hath done this. Non tam potentia sua, quam negligentia nostra. The Inclination and Disposition of the King we all know. Our common Interests all at Hazard, our Friends at Pawn, Religion at Stake. - To strain at once, to be made safe for once. Are we poor ? Spaine rich : That our Indies. Breaking with them, we shall break our Necessities together. - To consider speedily, for fear we suffer in our Intention.
Mr. Treasurer: Nothing more needless than to use Arguments here to stir up our Affections; for that every Man plainly sees, never any thing more highly concerned us: - Only staggered at the Greatness of the Demand.
An old Saying, a Work well begun, half ended. War often as much carried by Reputation, as by Power. The Report of our large Contribution will much prevail with our Allies abroad, and * to engage them to concur with us. - Now to give some competent Sum, to enable him to support the Charge of the Fleet, Ireland, and the Low Countries. - Three Subsidies, * how far forth we will support him for Time to come.
Sir Geo. Moore: - In his Majesty's last Answer a deal of Wisdom, in seeking to be assured of the Means to maintain a War, before he undertake; and the Care of his People. - Cannot follow a better Guide, than his Majesty, though afar off, as Peter Christ. He desires Six Subsidies
and Twelve Fifteens. - Must look to the Course he takes. Before we make a Promise, see how to pay: Otherwise we shall but dare verba. - To consider the present Occasion, what it requires; and considering, this Answer is as well to the Lords above, and us, with whom we are happily, conjoined, not unfit, to have some Conference with them about the present Sum. In the Time of the late Queen, when War with Spaine, the first granted Two Subsidies : 31st Year, the first Precedent of Two. Subsidies: After, 39th Year, Three Subsidies, Six Fifteens : 43d Year, Four Subsidies, and Eight Fifteens. - Speaks not this, that we should run into the like Course.
- To have this considered of, what the present Occasion requires; and then to full to such a Proportion, as may well be levied. - Two Subsidies, Four-Fifteens. If more Occasion hereafter, we are the same Body.
Sir Rob. Mansill: - What necessary, first Proposition. The Design must direct the Preparation, the Preparation the Charge, the Charge the Means. - Dissents from the first Man: Doth affect to be enabled to make War against the strongest Enemy. Our best Way -
To be prepared against Spaine, our Course to prepare for a Fleet, and an Army, that will secure the Low Countries, and ourselves. - Will speak somewhat to the Time past. When the Treaty began, they had an Intent at first to abuse : All the while a preparing, when we have been negligent; and therefore must now make the more Haste, in being ready in time. - To have an Army prepared, to offend Spaine, if Cause, and defend ourselves. - We have a Fleet, that, with the Charge of 25,000 l. will be of the best Use, that ever any Fleet was to any State. This to consist of 30 Sail of Merchantmen, and 15 of his Majesty's Ships. This of itself the Substance of Sea-preparation. These will transport 20,000 upon all Occasions.
- To have the Persons of 20,000 Men in readiness, besides the trained Men : Arms presently provided for them. With this Preparation will make the Enemy to provide to secure himself. Between Three or Four hundred thousand will do this. Out of this Preparation enough to secure Ireland.
Mr. Alford: - This the greatest Matter he ever spake in, in Parliament. - So to advise, that we do not blemish what we have already done. To pursue Sir Jo. Savyle's Motion. - Howsoever Things fall out, the King clear. - Says, he will not oppress his People: Will lie upon us, when all concluded. - Then to put all to the Question. Punctually to proceed ; and to consider, how this Money shall be managed. This not the Work of One Day. - Ancient Precedents, that Committees have been put in Trust with Management of Money. - Then, the last of all, ready to confer with the Lords.
Chancellor Exchequer: - His Majesty never clearer in any thing, than in this Answer : His Doubts, not to * his Subjects, and leave himself free; but, as a wise King, to see how he may do it; and this, with so much Moderation, as may be. In so great Purposes greater Thoughts, than to reflect too much upon our own Estates. - Never nearer a happy Entrance than now. - Opinion no less essential, than Supply, in War Affairs. -
The Sound of Six Subsidies, and Twelve Fifteens, very fearful. - To have the House pass the general Question first; not, for so much, but, so much, as the present Necessity requires: Then to refer to a Committee, what the Means: Then to consider and weigh his Majesty's gracious Offers, which may make the Burthen seem light.
Sir James Perrot: - His Majesty's Demands great: The Sum insupportable, unless moderated by the Time of the Levying. - Will not so suddenly prescribe any Course. - Some Questions: 1. Whether this Sum, if consented to, would be sufficient to manage this War: 2. When resolved what to give, to tender to the King some Consequences of it; that all other Treaties with foreign Princes may be broke, that may be prejudicial to our Religion.
Generals satisfy no Parts. - Some Particulars: I. His Majesty's Demand. - Two Particulars : His Majesty's Care, not to have it too heavy : 2. So to give, as that it may serve the Turn. The Demand known; and, whether the People be able to give it, or whether ever any such Sum given, worth Consideration. 2. If requisite to be given, yet fit to know to what End. - To have our Judgments and Affections go together. To level our Declaration to our Abilities, and the Action, his Majesty will put us upon. - Hears Wars spoken on, and an Army; but would be glad to hear where. The Palatinate the Place intended by his Majesty. This we never thought of; nor fit for the Consideration of this House, in regard of the infinite Charge. - To think of such a Course, and resolve of those Things, of necessity to be resolved: The securing of ourselves, Ireland, and the Low Countries. To this End, if his Majesty make this a Session, and pass good Laws, give Two Subsidies, and Two Fifteens; and to have the Papists give double * . - l. Generally rich: Live privately: Undergo no Burthen in the Commonwealth: And therefore may stand with the Justice of the House to force them to this.
Mr. Pym: - Have gone some Degrees from our Danger. - Fears a Relapse. - To have the Propositions of Chancellor Exchequer revived. - Limitation of Time, for the Ease of the Subjects. - First to conclude the general Question, that, if the Necessity shall require, we will yield to this Demand.
Secretary Conway: - Whether a War, and what we shall do with this Money. - The King hath declared in Part. - To give this, to make him declare wholly. - Now offered us that, we have so long desired. Many Fears among us, lest the King, when he hath that Money, may conclude upon a Peace. -
Last Parliament some Hope given of this; but the King sent word, that he was so engaged, that, if the King of Spaine complied with him, he could not go back - The King then persuaded, the Match with Spaine good, and the Means to recover the Palatinate: The Prince then affected the Match : The Counsellors then carried by the Judgment of the King: But not so now. King commanded to be delivered to us the Proceedings of the Treaty. We may guess by that, what he intends. He hath declared, he is resolved in Conscience, he may break : The Prince not now so intangled. -
The Lords now joined with us, that they think fit to have these Treaties broken. Can we think now, these Things can be knit together again ? These Fears without Cause. If we now order, that we will give the King Satisfaction of the Six Subsidies, and Twelve Fifteens, and then regulate the Manner afterwards. - No Man holds the Liberty of his Person, because such a Man, but, because under the Protection of the Laws. If then we limit the Gift by our Acts, why may we not safely do it, and say to the King, that, in Conformity to his Demands, we will satisfy him ? -
The Things are come to such a Necessity, that, if we will satisfy the King in this, he will declare. England bound in Honour not to forsake the King's Children. This must be done by conserving the Low Countries. That, which we gripe at, is, to have the King declare. No Way to do this, but to say, we will do this. - With such Limitations, as are prescribed us. Six Subsidies, and 12 Fifteens; and after think upon Particulars, how it shall be employed.
Mr. Mallory: - Wonders to see so much Importunity put on us at this Time. - To know what the Business must be. - We are here as Stewards, not for themselves alone. Let it be our Reputation, to be ready to give all we have, and not to give such or such a Particular. To put to the Question Sir Jo. Savyle's Motion.
Sir Geo. Chudleigh: - Will save a Labour of the first Question. - Improper for us to enter into all the Stratagems of a War: Unfit for this Place. 2. Question, if we do advance a good Sum for the present, as much as he thinks the King expects; a fit Sum between Two or Three hundred thousand. The Way somewhat a new Way : Although
under the Name of Subsidy, yet not to descend to the lowest Sort of Subsidy-men. No Man, under 5 l. Lands, to be in. The poor Subjects, for Want of Trade, with often Subsidies and Benevolences. - Half a Subsidy below that. - To go to a good round Sum upon the rest, above 5 l. Land. - Five Subsidies. - A Committee to draw a Bill, for the Spending of this Money.
Sir Rob. Harlo: - The Work of this Day in the nearest End. - That the King would crown our Advice with a Declaration. - King will do this, if we do not still insist on Generals. The King's Demand, Six Subsidies, and Twelve Fifteens. - We know how to have a Declaration. - To give now, this Session, enough to serve the present Occasion, and not to leave ourselves disengaged for a further Supply. To make an Order here, that these Six Subsidies, and Twelve Fifteens, shall be granted for this War, and, when declared, make an Act, that Three Subsidies, and Six Fifteens, shall be presently levied. This may be committed to Committees: Then take an Account of the Committee, what done, and what more to be done, at our next Meeting.
Sir Ar. Ingram: - No Man hath spoken, but declared willing to give : The Point, the Proportion. - To lay a good Ground. - All engaged: King, and Subject. - Cannot go a safer Way, than to consider, what to be done ; then, what will do it; and lastly, the Means. - This to a Committee of the whole House
Sir Geo. Chaworth: - The King did particularize Six Subsidies, and Twelve Fifteens; and, for that, should have a Breach of both Treaties: - Which he thinks both at an End.- - For the Match; that a Thing impossible : - As much, as if Two Armies already in the Field : For the other, without that, leaves to our Consideration. A third Treaty, but that no Part of our Advice to the King. - Touching the present Proposition of Supply; will go another Way, than any Man yet hath. - If a War ensue, will not be To-morrow : - Yet not against a present Relief. - First Proposition may be done, and yet without these Demands. If we determine to give a good Sum of Money, and tie to it Laws, will give the King good Satisfaction, and the People too. The King may dispose this as please him. - For the Low Countries; thinks, they are not in any present Danger. - Not any One Town yet taken. One Town (Ostend) cost the Lives of 150,000 Men. - Ease the Subject of Grievances, and at Michaelmas better able to give Three Subsidies than now One. - To make a Session with all Speed; and to publish it now, that we will give Two Subsidies, and Four Fifteens, and tie to it good Laws.
Mr. Wentworth: - The last Speech savoured so much of Diversion, that he hopes no Man will agree with it. - Grievances at home may take some small Drops out of our Purses, but no Drops of Blood out of our Hearts. - Must be a Breach of Amity with Spaine, that must procure our Safety. -
18 Edw. III. the King advised with the Parliament: The whole People, Lords and Commons, persuaded the King to make himself as strong as he could ; to go himself beyond the Seas : And then the Money given, was put into Hands of Men designed by Parliament; and then they instantly beseeched him, not to be diverted by any Letters, or fair Promises whatsoever. - Before we pass an Act, we may see in general, that there shall be some Enterprize, to make use of that we give. - To maintain this War, will be content to eat with a wooden Spoon, as the Christians in former Times sold their vasa sacra. - To offer some Two or Three Subsidies, and some Fifteens; with this, that we will be ready hereafter timely enough to supply his Majesty.
Sir Hen. Mildmay : - He a very unhappy Man, that, after a Business hath been so well debated, shall come in with new Propositions. - Confident, that, if we hurt not ourselves with our own Fears, shall be safe. - l. The Quantity of the King's Demand. - For that; what we give now, not to the King, but the Kingdom. The Name of so many Subsidies enough to affright any body, that know the Wants of the poor People. - For the Precedent; notwithstanding his Dependency, will give his Voice against any ill Precedent. - Now to consider, what may serve for the present Maintenance of a War. If half so much as the King demands will serve, his Voice shall go with that. - To have a Committee of the House, Afternoon ; and the Speaker to be here ready.
Sir Jo. Walter : - Occasions Two : 1. To recover the Palatinate : 2. To withstand the Ambition of the King of Spaine. - Not now fit to debate, where the War shall be : That fit for a Council of War. The Thing now is to determine, what to give. - Four Subsidies. - Reasons for this : 1. To encourage the Persons, that shall be employed.
In a Cause of this Nature, would rather lessen his Diet, Apparel, lessen his Children's Portion, and drink in Wood and Earth. - Many Miseries fallen on us, since we have neglected the true Religion established among us. - Moved to this out of his Zeal to true Religion. -
Mr. Glandvyle: - Will propose a Consideration to precede all these. - We have gone to the King, and treated generally, as Spaine did with them. The King hath told us, that general Terms will not carry it. - " If this may be done, then I will follow your Advice; but if this may not be done, then not." - Must be an extraordinary Overture, that must draw the King from Peace. If this give the King Occasion not to declare, where are we then ? Our Choice, like David; better to fall into the Arms of England, than Spaine. We bestow what we do, upon ourselves. - Not to be too nice, when the King presses upon Particulars. - 7 Edw. VI. One Subsidy. Queen Mary Time that released. That a good Precedent for us. - King, he hopes, will be led as well by good Examples of Grace, as otherwise. - 31 Eliz. Two Subsidies, and Two Fifteens; and so 43o, grew to Four. The Occasions of these: - 39o, an invincible Navy upon the Coast. Now, although these Dangers not so eminent, yet now to begin upon a new Score. - Last Time made a Parliament for Subsidies, and no Laws. - To have now a Parliament of Laws, and Subsidies ; and another of Laws, without Subsidies ; and then quit. -
Sir Hen. Anderson: - Dangers to return into the Country, and tell them of Subsidies ; dangerous again, not to give. Necessary to shut the Back Door, and make up our wooden Walls, and to assist our best Friends. - To put to the Question, whether, if his Majesty will declare, that we will not satisfy him in his Demands. - For the Manner, many Things to be considered of.
Sir Hen. Fane seconds Mr. Glandvyle's Motion. - That will bring us all to that Issue we expect. Can be no Precedent to our Disadvantage. - Would not have it go abroad to foreign Ambassadors, the Poverty of the Country. - If we not well behave ourselves this Day, may fear. Parliaments will not be so frequent: Will distaste also him, that is to succeed. - To have those, that are the King's Allies -
That Six Subsidies, and Twelve Fifteens, may pass by a Question, and an Order only; and then that, which is necessary, to pass by an Act, to be gathered in before Michaelmas. This cannot give the King Power to levy it, unless passed by Act of Parliament - Make it conditional, that, if the War cease, the Money not to be levied. - By this Means the King's Honour will be saved, and we shall gain what we desire.
Sir Bab. Hicks: - Agrees with the uttermost. - Some Occasion heretofore to give Credit to his Majesty, and hath been satisfied : Therefore doubts not the King. - God be thanked, though all we have be at the Stake, yet not at that Stake our Enemies would have us. - If Six, Five will not; Two, One cannot; Four, Three bears all away:
Mr. Alford: - Cannot yield now to go to a Question - No man hath disagreed from giving. The Question propounded, impossible. Last Parliament would give no Fifteens, because fell upon poor Men. When they then could not give Two, shall they now give Twelve? - Hen. VIII. great Dealing to engage Men for a War. -
In Parliament not only Subsidies, but other Means. - Will not have his Subjects burthened, nor yet himself delayed. - In former Records - He is pleased to have a Session now, then at Michaelmas, and at Spring: Divides it into Three Parts. Five Things the Work of these Subsidies: 1. The Securing of Ireland: 2. The Defence of our own Coasts: 3. Preparation of our Navy: 4. To join with the Low Countries, and assist them; 5. The Recovery of the Palatinate. - These Things the Work. - To specify our Gift to be for these. - 2. Consider the Support. A Subsidy of the Laity, 70 Thousand Pounds; a Fifteen, 30,000 Pound; a Subsidy of the Clergy, 20,000l : All England not so much, as to give Six Subsidies, and Twelve Fifteens: - Come to 900,000l. almost a Million, 1. Question, whether it may be done: 2. Whether with Conveniency. 42 Edw. III. the King treated with the Commons about Peace. They made several Answers: Could not assent to any Peace, for many Reasons, they then gave. -
6 Hen. VII. King advised with Lords and Commons, of a War with France: They allowed it; but desired, the poorer Sort of the Realm might be spared. 4 Hen. VIII. he consulted again with his People, and they advised him to War. - To set down any thing verbally in the Book, against all Precedent. - Those nominative Subsidies.
- Divide this Sum into Three Parts; 300,000l. for the present; all in Subsidy, but no Fifteens. - To lay it upon the richer Sort. - So many Subsidies, as shall amount to 300,000 l. That may make a great Sound.- - The Recusants in England have lived safely, securely, freed from all Office: - To have them give double as much as we give. - Recusants convict, or such, as have not gone to Church within Six Months; and those about London, that go to the Spanish Ambassador's, to Mass; to have them give double Subsidy. By this means, we shall get enough to serve for the present: If Occasion shall serve afterwards, as ready then to satisfy the King's Demand, as now.
Sir Edw. Wardor: - To enter into Consideration, what to be done, before the King give us Leave to do it, preposterous. - To give Six Subsidies, and Twelve Fifteens, if the Business require it. - This no greater Engagement than before. The Subsidies, that have been heretofore, not all at aTime, but by yearly Collections. - To pass, by the Vote of the House, that we will assist the King, in the Pursuit of our Advice, with Six Subsidies, and Twelve Fifteens.
We differ only in our Way. - One Question now, how to give the King Satisfaction in his last Demand. Our Advice to dissolve the Treaties: This draws on a second. If we advise him to this, we engage the King, and ourselves. - Better to have a War, than a dangerous Peace. - " If a War follow, says he, shall I engage, before I know how to continue it?" The King doth not doubt us, but to see his Way through his Business. He hath made it appear, he is not able : He hath applied himself to us. If this require a great Sum of Money, shall we not do it?
Nay, we must. Our quantum must be tantum, as the Business requires. The King propounds not these Particulars positively, nor the Time. King hath given us a Way, without Offence. We engage not ourselves, unless the King be first engaged. The Business not his alone : Every one a Part in this Business : All Passengers in this Ship. This being so, shall we now dispute the Poverty of the Kingdom ? We must do what we can do :
The Manner, of the Proportion of it. - A great Sum. - Would not have the Noise of it go down to the Country at once. - Thus much Money not to go out of the Kingdom: But changing the Hand. - Not to all at once; and yet to make such a Declaration, as shall satisfy the King. Not tied to this Way. The King desires but what may be equivalent. - Not give the Honour to the Recusants, to give double Subsidy : - To wring better Blood out of them, than *. - Near about 300,000l. will be a good Proportion for the present: But our Subsidies grow lower every Day than other. - To have a Care, that there be no Deductions out of this, being we have Treasurers of our own. To leave our Fifteens wholly, dangerous: To forget them. To declare ourselves now to give Three Subsidies, and Three Fifteens, to be thus levied: Two Subsidies, with Two Fifteens: 14 Eliz. so. -
This may go hard with the poorer Sort: Nothing with the richer. Let it go in the ordinary Form. This may be with no great Difficulty. To be gathered together, of Necessity, for present Occasions: About May to have a Gathering in of these Two, and the Third about Michaelmas. To have somewhat in Bank for the Residue. To give the King Assurance. To be Suitors to him, to come again at Michaelmas; and that we will be then as ready to supply his Wants, as now.
Sir Christ. Hilliard: - To give Two Subsidies, and Two Fifteens. - In 88 Sir Wal. Mildmay made known to this House the Queen's Wants: Desired then but Two Subsidies, and Two Fifteens. The Wants then as great as now.
Sir Tho. Jermyn: - Glad to see the general Sense and Genius of this House go the Advancement of this Work. - An Objection concerning the Poverty of the People. - Far against the Desire of the King, to see any Money in his Coffers, that should be gathered with the Tears of his Subjects. -
To have this a civil Fast, and determine somewhat here, before we rise. - Desires to see the Spanish Ambassadors out of Town, and Kingdom. - King of France set up a Candle, and bad the Pope's Nuntio be gone, before that was burnt out. - If the King had once declared, the Spanish Ambassadors nothing to do here, but truss up their Gods, and be gone. - Besides a Mystery of Iniquity among ourselves. - To retard nothing, that hinder the King's Declaration.
Sir Hen. Poole: - This not yet ready for a Question. - Will add a great Help, to have a Committee. Divers Things to think of. - May be Occasion to pray in Aid of Recusants, and great rich Men, that abound in Wealth; and to pray in Aid of Scotland.
Sir Jo. Savyle: - To One Point. - Some cry to a Question of a definitive Sum. - One of the dangerous and unseasonable Motions he ever heard. - More Danger to ask too little, than too much. - Therefore to be well examined. - To have Time, to advise, till To-morrow Morning.
Sir Dud. Digs: - Of the same Opinion. - To put any Sum to Question, very preposterous. - King desirous to know, whether he may be confident of us, if he shall declare. - Some, peradventure, may possess the King, that this Kingdom not able to defend itself. - Thinks, this may be pressed to our Inconvenience. - If his Majesty may be satisfied by any other Means, as well. If the King may know our Resolution to back our Advice, and that we