Acts and Ordinances of the Interregnum, 1642-1660. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1911.
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[9 June, 1643.]
Whereas the Lords and Commons now assembled in Parliament have Declared, That there have been, and now is, a Popish and traiterous Plot, for the Subversion of the true Protestant Reformed Religion, and the Liberty of the Subject; and that, in Pursuance thereof, a Popish Army hath been raised, and is now on Foot in divers Parts of this Kingdom; and have further, in a solemn Manner, Declared, Vowed, and Covenanted, That, in order to the Security and Preservation of the true Protestant Religion, and Liberty of the Subject, they will not consent to the laying down Arms, so long as the Papists, now in open War against the Parliament, shall by Force of Arms be protected from the Justice thereof; and whereas the Lords and Commons have Declared, That there hath been a treacherous and horrid Design lately discovered, by the great Blessing and especial Providence of God, of divers persons, to join themselves with the Armies raised by the King, and to destroy the Forces raised by the Lords and Commons in Parliament, to surprize the Cities of London and Westm. with the Suburbs, and by Arms to force the Parliament; and the said Lords and Commons finding, by constant Experience, that many Ways of Force and Treachery are continually attempted, to bring to utter Ruin and Destruction the Parliament and Kingdom, and, that which is dearest, the True Protestant Religion; and that, for the preventing and withstanding the same, they have thought fit that all who are true-hearted, and Lovers of their Country, should bind themselves each to other, in a Sacred Vow and Covenant, in Manner and Form as followeth: And accordingly A.B. in Humility and Reverence of the Divine Majesty, declare my hearty Sorrow for my own Sins, and the Sins of this Nation, which have deserved the Calamities and Judgements that now lie upon it; and my true Intention is, by God's Grace, to endeavour the Amendment of my own Ways; and that I do abhor and detest the said wicked and treacherous Design lately discovered; and that I never gave, nor will give, my Assent to the Execution thereof; but will, according to my Power and Vocation, oppose and resist the same, and all other of the like Nature; and, in Case any other like Design shall hereafter come to my Knowledge, I will make such timely Discovery as I shall conceive may best conduce to the preventing thereof: And whereas I do in my Conscience believe that the Forces raised by the Two Houses of Parliament are raised and continued for their just Defence, and for the Defence of the true Protestant Religion, and Liberties of the Subject, against the Forces raised by the King, I do here, in the Presence of Almighty God, Declare, Vow and Covenant, That I will, according to my Power and Vocation, assist the Forces raised and continued by both Houses of Parliament, against the Forces raised by the King without their Consent; and will likewise assist all other Persons that shall take this Oath, in what they shall do in Pursuance thereof; and will not, directly or indirectly, adhere unto, nor shall willingly assist, the Forces raised by the King without the Consent of both Houses of Parliament: and this Vow and Covenant I make in the presence of Almighty God, the Searcher of all Hearts, with a true Intention to perform the same, as I shall answer at the Great Day, when the Secrets of all Hearts shall be disclosed.