Journal of the House of Commons: Volume 2, 1640-1643. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1802.
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Die Mercurii, 16 Martii, 1641.
Leave of Absence.
Call of the House.
"That on Tuesday Night, he being One of the Watch that, with others, were appointed to watch at the Parliament Stairs, they came into the Court House, to see if all were safe there; and as he came back, he found this Letter now shewed unto him: And afterwards, he, with others, went to the Feathers Tavern, and would have had the Boy there to read the Superscription; which he could not; Then I broke it open; and the Constable, the Master of that Tavern, took it from me, and it was carried into the House; but they would not let us hear it read: Then the Constable took the Names of Four or Five of us, that were at the Sight of breaking it open."
Jo. Harford, a Constable saith, "That he appointed these Watchmen to keep Watch about the Parliament Stairs that Night; and, going thither, found not the Watch there:- Met them afterwards at the Feathers; and I chid them, and they excused it, saying, They had found a Letter; and that Mistress Rosbury, the other Constable's Wife, had it; and I afterward" * * * *
Arms at Hull.
Information against the Sheriff of Northampton.
Peter Lord of the Parish of Welby, and John James of Barten, of the County of Northampton, were called in; touching a Warrant, received from the High Sheriff, for publishing of a Book, containing all Petitions and Messages from the Parliament, and his Majesty's several and respective Answers to the same, concerning the Militia: And Peter Lord said, That, having on Saturday last, received such a Warrant, he repaired on Monday to the High Sheriff; and told him, " I came to know his Mind about it: Said he, Have not you published it? I will send you to the Gaol:- You are to publish it in the Church, and to every one of the Inhabitants of the Town:- Have not you the Book; the King's Hand, Charles Rex; and my Hand, William Wilmore, High-Sheriff?- This is to hinder the Militia, That is the End of it.- You go contrary to all Men; and think yourself wiser than others.- The King must be obeyed, for all the Parliament. Then I told him, I durst not publish it without Consent of Parliament. He said, I must do it."
Then John James, being examined, said. He was present when all this, informed of by Peter Lord, was spoken by the High Sheriff; and can testify the Truth thereof: And saith farther, That the High Sheriff did check him for not causing the Book to be read.
Call of the House.
Rebellion in Ireland.
Ordered, That the Remonstrance of the State of the Rebellion in Ireland, and of the Causes and Proceedings thereupon, presented by Doctor Jones, be referred to the Committee appointed to prepare the Declaration, for them to make use of; and then that it be published in Print; and that the Letter of the Lords Justices, concerning that Remonstrance, be likewise printed.
Relief of English in Dublin.
Ordered, That the Two hundred Pounds, taken up in Ireland upon Sir John Temple's Bond, and Sir Robert Meredith, for the Relief of the poor English in Dublyn, be paid to Dr. Temple of Battersey, out of the First Moneys that shall come in upon the Act of Contribution, according to the Desires and Directions of the Lords Justices: And that the Lords be desired to join with this House in it.
Persons from Ireland.
Mr. Glyn, Mr. Whittlock, Mr. Prideaux, Mr. Whit-tacre, are appointed presently to withdraw, to prepare an Order for preventing of the Irish to come over into England; and for sending such back into Ireland as are come over hither.
Resolved, That Mr. Speaker shall take particular Notice, and give them particular Thanks, of their Desire of the King's Return; and of their Desire concerning the speedy putting into Execution the Ordinance touching the Militia.
The Gentlemen were again called in again: And Mr. Speaker told them, "That their Petition was full, not only of general Care, and Respect to the Public....; for which he gave them Thanks; and likewise for the Two Particulars concerning the King's coming to Town; and the Militia: And as for their Petition to the Lords, the House doth fully approve of it."
Message from the King.
The Lords desire a free Conference, by Committees of both Houses, concerning a Message this Day received from the King, touching the Privileges of Parliament, and the Safety of the Kingdoms of England and Ireland, presently, in the Painted Chamber, if it may stand with the Conveniency of this House.-
And then they were called in again: And Mr. Speaker told the Gentlemen of the County and of the Town of Cambridge, "They find in them a Care for the Publick, and of Respect to this House; for which they return them Thanks; and do very well approve of the Petition to the Lords."
Then Mr. Speaker told the Gentlemen of Cambridge Town, "That as to the Particular concerning a Lecturer, that when they shall nominate one to the House, That they hold fit to be a Lecturer, that they will give Order for Erecting of a Lecture, and establishing a Lecturer.-
Persons wounded in Whitehall.
The humble Petition of divers Persons in and about the City of London, who were wounded at Whitehall: wounded in And it is referred to the Committee that was appointed to consider of that Business by the Committee at Grocershall: And that Committee is made a Committee of this House; and ordered to be revived.
It is Ordered, That he be forthwith released, and dis-charged from his Imprisonment, and That To-morrow Morning, at Nine of Clock; and that he attend the Committee for Informations: Who are appointed to examine the Business concerning the London Petition, framed touching the Militia of London.
Message from the King- Removal to York.
Mr. Hollis reports, that my Lord Keeper declared, that Yesternight, at Nine of the Clock, he received a Letter dated at Huntington, 15° Martii Instant, from his Majesty, signed with the Privy Signet, to be com-municated to the Lords House: Which he had done accordingly; and that the Lords had made their Ob-servations thereupon; which he left to That Lord to deliver whom the Lords had designed to that End.
1. "For the King's Removal so far as Yorke from the Parliament; and the great Inconvenience that should happen thereby to the Kingdom of Ireland, by reason of his Absence; the Lords taking it into Consideration, do conceive his Majesty's removing so far as Yorke, that it must, of Necessity, be an Obstruction, and may be a Destruction of that Kingdom."
The next Particular out of the Message is concerning the Privilege of Parliament, and the Laws of the Land: The Lords are of Opinion, That when the Parliament, which is the supreme Court of this Kingdom, shall declare what the Law of the Land is, to have That not only questioned and controverted, but contradicted, and a Command that it should not be obeyed, is a Breach of the Privilege of Parliament."
"The next Observation they had, was from the Time and Place Comparing This with the Votes that passed both Houses Yesterday, it is, as it were, a Contradiction of those Votes: They do either think there was some prophetical Spirit in it, that this should be so express an Answer to those Votes, or was framed nearer Hand: And therefore desire that it may be referred to a Committee to examine the same.
"CHARLES Rex. RIGHT trusty and well-beloved Counsellor, We greet you well. Our Will and Command is, that, at the next Sitting of our House of Peers, after your Receipt of These, you deliver Our Message, sent inclosed, to be read in Our said House; and afterwards communicated to Our House of Commons: For which this shall be your Warrant. Given at Our Court at Hunttington, 15th of March, 1641."
"HIS Majesty being now in His Remove to his City of York, where He intends to make His Residence for some time, thinks fit to send this Message to both Houses of Parliament; That He does very earnestly desire, that they will use all possible Industry in expediting the Business of Ireland; in which they shall find so chearful a Concurrence by His Majesty, that no Inconvenience shall happen to that Service by His Absence; He having all that Passion for the Reducing of That Kingdom which He hath expressed in His former Message; and, being unable by Words to mani fest more Affection to it than He hath endeavoured to do by those Messages; having likewise done all such Acts as He hath been moved unto by His Parliament: Therefore, if the Misfortunes and Calamities of His poor Protestant Subjects there, shall grow upon them; though His Majesty shall be deeply concerned in, and sensible of their Sufferings, He shall wash His Hands, before all the World, from the least Imputation of Slackness in that most necessary and pious Work. And, that His Majesty may leave no Way unattempted, which may beget a good Understanding betwixt Him and His Parliament, He thinks it necessary to declare, that, as He hath been so tender of the Privileges of Parliament, that He hath been ready and forward to retract any Act of His own, which, He hath been informed, hath trenched upon their Privileges; so He expects an equal Tenderness in them of His Majesty's known and unquestionable Privileges; which are the Privileges of the Kingdom. Amongst which, He is assured, it is a fundamental one, That His Subjects cannot be obliged to obey any Act, Order, or Injunction, to which His Majesty hath not given His Consent: And therefore He thinks it necessary to publish, that He expects, and hereby requires, Obedience from all His loving Subjects to the Laws established; and that they presume not, upon any Pretence of Orders or Ordinances, to which His Majesty is no Party, concerning the Militia, or any other thing, to do or execute what is not warranted by those Laws; His Majesty being resolved to observe the Laws Himself, and to require Obedience to all them from all His Subjects.
And His Majesty once more recommends to His Parliament the Substance of His Message of the Twentieth of January last, that they compose and digest, with all Speed, such Acts as they shall think fit, for the present and future Establishment of their Privileges, the free and quiet Enjoying their Estates and Fortunes, the Liberties of their Persons, the Security of the true Religion, now professed in the Church of England, the Maintaining His Majesty's royal and just Authority, and settling His Reve nues; His Majesty being most desirous to take all fitting and just Ways, which may beget a happy Understanding between Him and His Parliament; in which He conceives his greatest Power and Riches doth consist.
Resolutions on King's Message.
Resolved, upon the Question, That, when the Lords and Commons, in Parliament, which is the supreme Court of Judicature in the Kingdom, shall declare what the Law of the Land is; to have This not only questioned and controverted, but contradicted, and a Command that it should not be obeyed, is a high Breach of the Privilege of Parliament.
The Lords do return unto you the Draught of the Commission concerning the Affairs of Ireland, which they received from this House, with their Approbation; and likewise the Names of those Lords which they think fit to be inserted into that Commission; viz.
Letter to Sheriff of Yorke.
Sir Philip Stapilton reported a Letter that he was ordered to prepare, to be sent to the High Sheriff, to satisfy him and the Country, touching some Misreports that were raised in that County, concerning their Petition that they preferred to this House: The which was read; and assented unto; and Ordered to be fair written, and signed by Mr. Speaker. And further Ordered, That it be referred to Sir Ph. Stapleton to take care to send this Letter by a trusty Messenger: And this House doth Order, That upon the Return of the Messenger, this House will give him Satisfaction for his Pains in that Journey, to be paid out of the Poll-money here at Westminster.
Resolved, upon the Question, That those Persons that advised his Majesty to absent himself from the Parliament, are Enemies to the Peace of this Kingdom, and justly to be suspected to be Favourers of the Rebellion in Ireland.
Ordered, That this shall be referred to the Consideration of the Committee of this House, that was formerly appointed to meet with the Committee of the Lords, concerning the Declaration touching the Militia of the Kingdom.
Person sent for.
Resolved, upon the Question, That Sir Wm. Willmer, Knight, the High Sheriff of the County of Northampton, shall be forthwith sent for, as a Delinquent, by the Serjeant at Arms attending on this House.
Book from the King not to be published.
Resolved, upon the Question, That Mr. Speaker shall direct these Two Persons of Northamptonshire, before mentioned, that they forbear to publish the Book, sent to the Sheriff of that County by his Majesty, containing the Petitions and Answers touching the Militia, until the Business be further examined, and the House shall give further Order therein.
The Persons aforesaid were called in: And Mr. Speaker, by the Commands of the House, took notice of their Care and Respect to this House, in not publishing any thing that concerned the Passages of this House, without the Privity and Directions of this House; and gave them Thanks therefore.
Payment to Lord, &c.
Ordered, That Mr. Wheeler, Sir Rob. Pye, and Sir Antho. Irby, do examine Mr. Jo. Noland, an Irishman, upon such Matters as they shall think fit to propound unto him; and that, if, upon Examination, they shall find Cause, they shall have Power to commit him to the Serjeant's Custody.