Journal of the House of Lords: Volume 12, 1666-1675. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1767-1830.
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Anno 25 Caroli Secundi.
DIE Mercurii, Septimo die Januarii, 1673, Anno Regni Serenissimi Domini Nostri Caroli Secundi, Dei Gratiâ, Angliæ, Scociæ, Franciæ, et Hib. Regis, Fidei Defensoris, &c. Vicesimo Quinto, quo die præsens hæc Duodecima Parliamenti Sessio tenenda est apud Civitatem Westm. ibi tam Spirituales quam Temporales Domini, quorum Nomina subscribuntur, præsentes fuerunt:
His Majesty being present this Day, and sitting in His Royal Throne, adorned with His Regal Ornaments (the Peers sitting in their Robes uncovered), the Gentleman Usher of the Black Rock was commanded to let the House of Commons know, "That it was His Majesty's Pleasure that they come up to attend Him presently."
"When I parted with you last, it was but for a little Time, and with a Resolution of meeting suddenly again. That alone was enough to satisfy My Friends that they need not fear, and My Enemies that they could not hope for, a Breach between us. I then told you, that the Time of this short Recess should be employed in doing such Things as might add to your Satisfaction: I hope I have done My Part towards it; and if there be any Thing else which you think wanting to secure Religion or Propriety, there is nothing which you shall reasonably propose, but I shall be ready to receive it. I do now expect you should do your Parts too; for our Enemies make vigorous Preparations for War; and yet their chief Hopes are to disunite us at Home: 'Tis their common Discourse, and they reckon upon it as their best Relief.
"It is not possible for Me to doubt your Affections at any Time, much less at such a Time as this, when the Evidences of your Affection are become so necessary to us all. I desire you to consider, that as the War cannot be well made without a Supply, so neither can a good Peace be had without being in a Posture of War. I am very far from being in Love with War for War's sake; but, if I saw any Likelihood of Peace, without Dishonour to Myself and Damage to you, I would soon embrace it: But no Proposals of Peace have yet been offered, which can be imagined with Intent to conclude, but only to amuse. Therefore the Way to a good Peace is, to set out a good Fleet; which we have Time enough to do very effectually, if the Supply be not delayed: If, after this, a Peace should follow, yet the Supply would be well given; for whatever remains of it, I am willing it should be appropriated for building more Ships.
"I cannot conclude without shewing the entire Confidence I have in you. I know you have heard much of My Alliance with France; and I believe it hath been very strangely misrepresented to you, as if there were certain secret Articles of dangerous Consequence; but I will make no Difficulty of letting the Treaties and all the Articles of them, without any the least Reserve, to be seen by a small Committee of both Houses, who may report to you the true Scope of them; and, I assure you, there is no other Treaty with France, either before or since, not already printed, which shall not be made known. And having thus freely trusted you, I do not doubt but you will have a Care of My Honour, and the Good of the Kingdom.
Ld. Keeper's Speech.
"The King hath already in Part told you what He hath done for you since the last Recess, what He is still ready to do, and what it is He doth now expect from you; and this in Terms so full and so obliging, so generous and so satisfactory, that he whose Affections are not raised by that Discourse, he who cannot acquiesce in the Fulness of this Assurance, he whose Heart is not established by it in such a Belief as may entirely dispose him to the Service of the Crown, will hardly be recovered to a better Disposition by any other Expedient: For indeed what better Way can be found to undeceive those who have been abused? The King refers you to the Time past, not to His Promises, but to His Performances; gives Men Leave to judge by what they see of what they hear, by what hath been done since the last Session of what is offered you now, and what is likely to be done for the Time to come.
"And doth not every Man see that the King hath given new Life and Motion to such Laws as were long dead, or fast asleep; that He hath once more repaired the Hedge about our Vineyard, and made it a Fence indeed, against all those who are Enemies to the Planting of it, who would be glad to see it trodden down or rooted up, and study how to sap and undermine our very Foundations?
"Do we not see that the King hath made it His Care and His Business to do all that is possible to preserve us in our Civil Rights too; that He makes the Laws of His Kingdom the Measures, not only of His Power, but His Prudence; that He suffers no Man to be wiser than the Law; that He thinks He cannot judge of the Health or Sickness of His State by any better Indication than the Current of His Laws, and suffers nothing to remain that may in the least Measure hinder Justice from flowing in its due and proper Channels?
"If, without staying for the Forms of Law in Points of Conviction, the present forbidding all Papists, or reputed Papists, to come to Court, and the extending this Prohibition to His Royal Palace at St. James's, be enough to discountenance them;
"If His Majesty's lessening and reducing all His Land Forces, and maintaining so few extraordinary, that they will scarce be enough to help to man His Fleet this Summer, can extinguish the Fears of a Standing Army;
"If a rigorous and severe Prosecution at Law, of all the Officers and Soldiers in His Majesty's ordinary Guards, when they misbehave themselves towards the meanest Subject, can secure your Properties;
"These are not single and transient Acts, but such Acts as flow from Habits; these are not Leaves and Blossoms, but true, solid, and lasting Fruits. Long! long! may that Royal Tree live and flourish, upon which these Fruits do grow!
"And yet His Majesty's Indulgence to you rests not here: He gives you Leave to study and contrive your own Assurance; and if you think you want any further Security, if any Thing have escaped His Majesty's Care, who meditates nothing more than your Preservation, you see you have free Leave to make any reasonable Proposition, and His Gracious Promise that He will receive it.
"This is a Satisfaction equal to all your Wishes: Now, if ever, your Joys are full. There wants no more to the Improvement of this Happiness, but the Wisdom of the Parliament to use these Advantages with a due Moderation.
"If, therefore, upon Enquiry, you shall think it needful to apply any other Remedies, it is extremely to be wished that those Remedies may be few, and withal, that they may be gentle and easy too: For they that are sick perish as often by too many Remedies, as by none at all; but none fall so fatally and so finally, as they who, being entered into some Degrees of Convalescence, resolve to recover in an Instant, and had rather make some great Effort, or try some bold Experiment upon themselves, than observe the Methods, or attend those gradual Progressions, which are necessary to perfect that Health, and compleat that Recovery.
"I must not omit One Instance more of His Majesty's Care for you; and that is, the great Industry and Application of Mind which His Majesty hath used all along, in Hopes to have obtained by this Time, if it had been possible, an honourable and a just Peace.
"When His Majesty's Ambassadors arrived there, the very First Meeting with those from The States Generall made it evident, that their Plenipotentiaries came not with any Intention to enter upon a serious Treaty, but only to draw the Matter out into Length, until their Affairs might meet with a better and more pleasing Conjuncture: For their very Credentials or Plenipotencies were so penned, that there were no less than Four gross Equivocations in the Body of them; which was so manifest, and without all Reply, that they were fain to send to their Masters at The Hague, to get them amended.
"But that which gave greatest Offence of all, and was purposely done for that End, was the Preamble, wherein they take upon them to beg the Question, to decide the Justice of the Cause, and to affirm such Matters of Fact, as they had Reason to believe would never be admitted.
"The Treaty should naturally have stopt here, but that His Majesty was resolved to give a Beginning to it, and (which was all that could be done) suffered His Ambassadors to enter upon it with a Protestation.
"Our Demands are no sooner given in, but presently Two of the Dutch Ambassadors go away to The Hague on Pretence to consult their Masters, where they staid a full Month, without any Kind of Answer given, or Exceptions taken to His Majesty's Demands, or any the least Step made in this Negotiation.
"When they came back, their Answer was a Remonstrance rather than an Answer, and such a Remonstrance as was fitter for a Rupture than a Treaty: There was scarce One Period in it which did not rather give Occasion of new Offence, than any Satisfaction for what was passed.
"And now this Article is in Effect performed; for Two of their principal Ambassadors are actually gone away from Cologne, as they long threatened they would do, leaving only Two other for Form sake, who in all Probability either must not, or will not, conclude without their Colleagues.
"His Majesty, notwithstanding, hath not suffered Himself to be diverted from using all the Ways and Means that were possible, to facilitate a Peace. To this End, He directed His Ambassadors, from Time to Time, to moderate their Demands in such Particulars as were capable of it; and wholly relaxes some Points which were of highest Importance to the Dutch to gain, and very considerable Abatements of His Majesty's just Satisfaction; a Condescension well received and esteemed by the Mediators, though it have not yet found any suitable Reception from the Dutch Ministers, or their superior Lords.
"To increase this as much as was possible, they prepare a Letter, which they send by a Trumpeter, sitting the Parliament, or very near it, and cause it to be given out that nothing more could be desired than they had offered.
"Their next Recourse was, to such Proposals as they could procure the Spanish Ambassador to deliver on their Behalfs; wherein, besides the Demands of Restitution of Prizes, which was wholly impracticable, there was a total Omission of any Regulation of Trade in The Indies; no Mention made of releasing His Majesty's Subjects at Surinam, where they remain in a State of Bondage; no Recompence offered, nor so much as Leave, asked for the Liberty of Fishing upon our Coasts: And yet the Right of our sole Fishing is so clear, that we find in our ancient Rolls of Parliament, in the Time of Richard the Second, a Tax laid upon all Strangers who fish in our Seas; and this not by Way of Custom when they come into our Ports, but by Way of Tribute for Fishing in our Seas; and this Evidence of His Majesty's Dominion within His own Seas hath been in all Ages downward preserved in some Measure, until the Time of the late Usurper, who for private Reasons first abandoned it.
"As for that Satisfaction in the Matter of the Flag which the Proposals mention, it is but reasonable to understand it in that Sense wherein they sometimes used to express themselves at Cologne; that is, the Thing shall be done, whole Fleets shall strike their Sails to single Ships, and they shall do it out of His Majesty's Seas too; but that of Right they ought so to do, will never be acknowledged.
"So they desire to change the ancient Inheritance of the Crown into a new Purchase, and to turn that Purchase into a Matter of Civility, which they may equally pay to all Crowned Heads, and equally resume, according to their good Pleasure and Occasions.
"Now, though these Proposals have been backed with some Kind of Intimation of a War with Spain in Case of a Refusal; yet His Majesty, who knows the Articles of Peace between Himself and that King, and His own Care to preserve them, who knows the Usefulness of His Alliance to that King, and the many good Offices He hath been always ready to do for Him, and withal considers the great Wisdom and Prudence of that Council, and how carefully they use to deliberate before they come to great and important Resolutions, will not easily believe it possible for that King to proceed to such Extremities; the rather, because the Dutch themselves have since departed from those very Proposals which they procured the Spanish Ambassador so earnestly to recommend; for they afterward sent the Ambassador a Reply to His Majesty's Answer to their Letter, wherein they abate much of what the Ambassador had offered, and seek to reduce Things to the State they were in at Breda.
"And yet this Reply, besides the Disrespect it carried to Spain, whose Proposals it shrunk from, was so offensive to His Majesty, that the Ambassador, like a wise and great Minister, that is, like himself, thought it became him to send it back again, without offering to present it.
"Nevertheless this Paper hath since stolen into the Press, and is printed at The Hague as a Letter delivered, and hath been sent hither under Covers to several Members of the House of Commons, of that House of Commons whom they libeled in the former War for their Zeal, and now pretend to reverence for their Deliberation; and all this in Hopes you will not think them obitinate, who refuse to treat at the Place of their own Appointment, or to be well understood any where else.
"How is it possible to understand these Proceedings to be real, and with a true Desire of Peace? And if they should yet send during this Session any new Proposal (for who knows the Designs of an Enemy?), what Form soever those Overtures may be dressed in, we may justly suspect that their End is, if they cannot divide us, at least to amuse us, and lessen our Care in providing for the War.
"Perhaps 'tis more than an honourable War doth allow, to go about to raise Sedition, though in the Country of an Enemy; but surely the Artifice of appealing in a Manner to the People, and making them the Judges of Peace and War, is a little too plain and open to take any Effect here.
"I have done with these few Instances of His Majesty's Care. Those of His Kindness are infinite; that which you have heard this Morning is of a transcendent, and indeed a very surprizing Nature; 'tis an Act of so entire a Confidence on His Majesty's Part, that it can never be repaid by any other Tribute on your Part, but that of a true and humble Affiance in Him.
"His Majesty is well assured, His Fleet is in such a Forwardness, that, if the Supply come in any reasonable Time, you will find no Time hath been lost in Preparation; and it was no small Matter to bring it to that Pass, that we may be as forward as our Enemies if we please, or very near it.
"If the Supply be at all delayed, it will have as ill Effect almost as if it were denied; for we may chance to be found, like Archimedes, drawing Lines in the Dust, while the Enemy is entering into our Ports. And if the further Progress of this Fleet be stopt for Want of your Concurrence, make Account all Hopes of Peace are stopt too; for, though the Fruit of War be Peace, yet 'tis such a Fruit as we must not hope to gather without our Arms in our Hands.
"'Tis not the Way to have a brave Peace, to shew ourselves weary of the War. Who ever trusted to the Good-nature of their Enemies? 'Tis a vigorous Assistance of the Crown, that must make not only your Arms considerable, but your Treaties too.
"On the other Side, if the putting of yourselves into a good Posture of War should produce a Peace, as possibly it may do, yet you will have the best Account of your Supply your Hearts can wish; for His Majesty is content it be appropriated to the Building of more Ships.
"There cannot be a higher Gratification of your Enemies, than to be backward in this Point. The very Opinion they have that you would be so, hath already done us so much Harm, that perhaps it is one great Cause of the Continuance of the War.
"There is One Thing more the King hath mentioned, and only mentioned to you; that is, the Consideration of the Goldsmiths, which involves so many Persons and Families, that the Concern is little less than National: 'Tis an Affair the King lays very much to Heart, and hopes a proper Time will come, when a favourable Regard may be had of it.
"He doth expect that you should do your Endeavours to restore and improve the mutual Confidence between Him and His People, and that you should do it to such a Degree, that it may recover its full Strength, and quite extinguish all their Fears and Jealousies; for the King takes Notice, that the Malice of His Enemies hath been very active, in sowing so many Tares as are almost enough to spoil that Harvest of Love and Duty which His Majesty may justly expect to reap from the good Seed which He Himself had sown.
"But 'tis to be hoped that no Man's Judgement or Affections will be either misled or disturbed by such Reports: For Calumnies and Slanders of this Nature are like Comets in the Air; they may seem perhaps, especially to the Fearful, to be ill Prognostics, and the direct Forerunners of Mischief; but in themselves they are vain Apparitions, and have no Kind of Solidity, no Permanence or Duration at all; for, after a little while, the Vapour spends itself, and then the base Exhalation quickly falls back again into that Earth from whence it came.
"Religion and Liberty stand secured by the most sacred Ties that are; nay, the King hath a greater Interest in the Preservation of both than you yourselves; for, as Religion, the Protestant Religion, commands your indispensable Obedience, so 'tis a just and lawful Liberty which sweetens that Command, and endears it to you.
"Let other Princes therefore glory in the most resigned Obedience of their Vassals. His Majesty values Himself upon the Hearts and Affections of His People, and thinks His Throne, when seated there, better established than the most exalted Sovereignty of those who tread upon the Necks of them that rise up against them.
"They were your Hearts that mourned in Secret for the Absence of the King. They were your Hearts and Affections to the King, which tired out all the late Usurpations, by your invincible Patience and Fortitude. It was you that taught our English World to see and know, that no Government could be settled here, but upon the true Foundations of Honour and Allegiance.
"And yet Posterity will have Cause to doubt, which was the greater Felicity of the Two, that Providence which restored the Crown, or that which sent us such a Parliament to preserve it when it was restored. What may not the King now hope from you? what may not you assure yourselves from Him? Can any Thing be difficult to Hearts so united, to Interests so twisted and interwoven together, as the King's and yours are?
"Doubtless the King will surpass Himself at this Time, in endeavouring to procure the Good of the Kingdom. Do you but excel yourselves too, in the continued Evidences of your Affections; and then the Glory of reviving this State will be entirely due to this Session.
"Then they who wait for the Languishing and the Declination of the present Government will be amazed to see so happy a Crisis, so blest a Revolution; and Ages to come will find Cause to celebrate your Memories, as the truest Physicians, the wisest Counsellors, the noblest Patriots, and the best Session of the best Parliament, that ever King or Kingdom met with."
Bill to encourage English Manufactures.
Committee of Privileges.
Committee for the Journal.
Their Lordships, or any Three of them; to meet on Saturday next, at Three of the Clock in the Afternoon, in, or in any Room near, the House of Peers; and afterwards when, and as often, as they shall please.
Committee for Petitions.
Their Lordships, or any Five of them; to meet on Tuesday next, at Three of the Clock in the Afternoon, in the Painted Chamber, and every Tuesday after; and to adjourn themselves from Time to Time, as they shall please.
Thanks to the King for His Speech.
ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That the Duke of Bucks, the Lord Great Chamberlain, and the Lord Steward of His Majesty's Household, do attend His Majesty, from this House, to present their humble Thanks, for His Gracious Speech made this Day; and to desire that His Majesty would please to give Order for the printing and publishing thereof, as also of the Lord Keeper's Speech made pursuant to it.
L. Brudnel, Talbot, & al. Trustees of the E. of Shrewsbury versus D. of Bucks and Count. Dowager of Shrewsbury.
Upon reading the Petition of Francis Lord Brudnell, Gilbert Talbott, Thomas Talbot, Buno Talbot, Mervin Awdley Touchet, and William Talbot, Esquires, near Relations, and some of them Trustees for Charles now Earl of Shrewsbury (as yet a Minor), complaining against George Duke of Bucks and Anna Maria Countess of Shrewsbury, Relict of Francis late Earl of Shrewsbury:
It is ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That the said Duke of Bucks the said Countess of Shrewsbury, and all other Persons concerned in the said Petition, may have a Copy or Copies thereof, and are hereby appointed to put in their respective Answers thereunto in Writing, in the House of Peers, on Thursday the Fifteenth Day of this Instant January, at Ten of the Clock in the Forenoon.
Memorandum, That Gilbert Talbott, Thomas Talbott, Buno Talbott, Mervin Awdley Touchet, and William Talbott, Five of the Petitioners against the Duke of Bucks, &c. being called in, did own the Contents of the said Petition; and did undertake to make good the Particulars contained therein.