January 1644: An Ordinance for Regulating the University of Cambridge, and for removing of Scandalous Ministers in the seven Associated Counties.

Pages 371-372

Acts and Ordinances of the Interregnum, 1642-1660. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1911.

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January 1644

[22 January, 1643/4.]

Earl of Manchester to appoint Committees in Associated Counties for execution of following Instructions.; Committee may summon all Members of University and all scandalous life, or ill-affected Ministers and School-masters.

Whereas many Complaints are made by the well-affected Inhabitants of the Associated Counties of Essex, Norfolke, Suffolk, Hertford, Cambridge, Huntington, and Lincolne; That the service of the Parliament is retarded, the Enemy strengthned the peoples Soules starved, and their mindes diverted from any care of Gods Cause, by their idle, ill-affected, and Scandalous Clergy, of the University of Cambridge and the Associated Counties; And that many that would give Evidence against such scandalous Ministers, are not able to travell to London, nor beare the charges of such a journey: It is Ordained by the Lords and Commons assembled in Parliament, That the Earle of Manchester shall appoint one or more Committees in every County, consisting of such as have been nominated Deputy-Lievtenants, or Committees by any former Ordinance of Parliament, in any of the said associated Counties every Committee to consist of ten, whereof any five or more of them, to sit in any place or places within any the said Associated Counties where the said Earle shall appoint, with power to put in execution these Instructions following, and in pursuance thereof, to give assistance to the said Committees.

May call Witnesses and examine complaints.; Earl of Manchester may eject and sequester unfit persons and appoint others.

First, They shall have power to call before them, all Provosts, Masters, and Fellowes of Colledges, all Students, and Members of the University, and all Ministers in any County of the Association, and all Schoole-masters that are scandalous in their lives, or ill-affected to the Parliament, or Fomentors of this unnaturall Warre, or that shall wilfully refuse obedience to the Ordinances of Parliament, or that have deserted their ordinary places of residence, not being imployed in the service of the King and Par liament. And they shall have power to send for any Witnesses, and examine any complaint or testimony against them, upon Oathes of such persons as shall and may be produced to give Evidence against them, and shall certifie their Names with the Charge and Proofes against them, to the said Earle of Manchester, and he shall have power to eject such as he shall judge unfit for their Places, and to sequester their Estates, Means and Revenues, and to dispose of them as he shall thinke fitting, and to place other fitting persons in their Roome, such as shall be approved of by the Assembly of Divines sitting at Westminster.

And administer Covenant.

The Earle of Manchester, or the said Committee or Committees shall have power to adminster the late Covenant, taken and to be taken of all the three Kingdomes, of England, Scotland, and Ireland, to all persons in any of the said associated Counties, and the Isle of Ely, upon such Penalties as are or shall be assigned by the Parliament in this behalfe.

May dispose of 1/5 of sequestered Estates for Wives and Children.

And be it Ordained, That the said Earle of Manchester shall have power to dispose of a fifth part of all such Estates as they shall sequester, for the benefit of the Wives and Children of any of the aforesaid persons.

Clerk of Committees.

The said Committee or Committees shall imploy a Clerke for the registring of all Warrants, Orders, Summons, and Ejectments made by them: And that they choose some convenient place for the preserving of the Writings of this Committee.

May inhibit all that obstruct this reformation.

That the said Earle of Manchester shall have power to examine and inhibite all such as doe obstruct the Reformation now endeavoured by the Parliament and Assembly of Divines.


And be it further Declared, That all such as shall do anything in execution of this Ordinance, shall be kept indempnified by the Authority and power of both Houses of Parliament.

Further powers to Lord Manchester.

And further be it Ordained, That the Earle of Manchester shall have power to appoint a convenient number, consisting of one or more out of every County, one out of the City of Norwich, and one out of the Countie and Citie of Lincolne: Provided, that three of these be Deputie-Lievtenants, to sit at Cambridge, for the better ordering of all businesses of the Association, according to Ordinances and Orders of Parliament, and according to his Commission granted by his Excellencie the Earle of Essex; And that the present Committee for the Association sitting at Cambridge, shall cease when the Earle of Manchester shall have appointed another under his hand and Seale.