Acts and Ordinances of the Interregnum, 1642-1660. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1911.
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Whereas the County and City of Worcester for a long time, have not onely been under the command and power of the Enemy, but have been made a chiefe Harbour and Receptacle for Papists and Delinquents, as well Irish as English, and other the known Enemies of the Church and Common wealth. For remedy whereof, and to reduce the said County and City to their due obedience to the King and Parliament; It is most necessary, that a certain proportion of Horse and Foot be forthwith raised, and Money provided, not onely to raise, but to maintain such Forces as shall from time to time be so raised, in, and for the reducing and keeping of the said County and City as aforesaid.
The Lords and Commons in Parliament Assembled, well weighing the premisses, and the necessity, and consequence thereof, do Declare, Order, and Ordain, and be it hereby Ordered, Declared, and Ordained, That the Right Honourable, Basil Earle of Denbigh; Edward, Lord Howard of Escrigg, Lord Lieutenant of the County of Worcester; Sir Walter Devereux, Knight and Baronet; Sir Robert Harley, Knight of the Bath; Sir Thomas Gervoyse, Knight; Sir Giles Overbury, Knight; Sir William Aston, Knight; John Wilde, and Richard Cresheld, Sergeants at Law; Humphrey Salway, Captaine Daniel Dobbins, Nicholas Lechmere, Edward Rouse, Samuel Knightley, John Nash, John Dormer, Thomas Milward, Thomas Cooks, George Wilde, John Penrice, Esquires; Collonel John Fox, Major Richard Salway, and Major Edward Smith, Captaine Charles Gheste, Captain Samuel Gardener; Henry Hunt, Thomas Young, Edmond Young, John Giles of Asley, John Fones, William Moore, William Collins, shall be, and are hereby nominated and appointed, a Committee of and for the Said Countie and Citie; and that they, or any five or more of them, shall have full power and Authority; and are hereby Authorized to take the Subcriptions of all such persons as will voluntary lend or contribute any summe or summes of Money, Plate, Horse, or Arms, towards the Supplies and Provisions aforesaid, and for other necessaries for advancement of the said Service; which sum and sums of Money Plate, Horse, or Arms to be so subscribed, lent, and contributed as aforesaid, The said Committee or any five or more of them, shall, and may receive, and imploy, for the services aforesaid, and give notes or acquittances, for the several sums of Money, Plate, Horse, or Arms, so received; which said notes or acquittances shall be a sufficient specialtie or evidence for the severall persons that shall lend or contribute any Money, Plate, Horse, or Armes, as aforesaid, to demand repayment thereof to the value thereof, with such increase, as shall be agreed upon, so as the same shall not exceed eight pounds per centum, for one yeare, And for the better inabling of the said Committee, to make repayment of such Moneys, and the value of such Plate, Horse, and Arms, as shall be lent for the purpose aforesaid: And for the raising, maintaining, and Supplies of the said Forces from time to time, as need shall require.
Be it further Ordained, by the said Lords and Commons, That the said Committee, or any five or more of them, shall have power and authority, and are hereby authorized to all intents and purposes, To put in execution within the said County and City, the severall Ordinances in this present Parliament hereafter mentioned, (that is to say) The severall Ordinances for Sequestration of Papists, and other notorious Delinquents; The Ordinance for the Fifth and Twentieth part; The Ordinances for the weekly Assessments; and all other Ordinances made this present Parliament, for advance of Money throughout the whole Kingdom of England, and Dominion of Wales, for the service of the King and Parliament: so far forth, as they, or any of them have not been already fully executed within the places aforesaid, except the Ordinances for Levying of Money by way of Excise or New-Impost; The proceed of all which raised, and to be raised within the said Countie or City, shall be payed by the Commissioners or Sub-Commissioners there, unto the Treasurer or Treasurers of the said County, to be issued out to the use and purposes aforesaid, whose Acquittance or Acquittances, shall be a sufficient discharge to the Commissioners of Excise in that behalfe: And the said Commissioners for Excise, are authorized, and hereby required from time to time, to issue their Warrants to their inferiour Officers within the said County and City, for payment of the said Moneys accordingly; And that the said Committee, or any five or more of them, take care of the full and due execution of the said Ordinances, according to the tenour and true meaning of the same respectively: And for the more speedy raising of Money for the repayment of such sums, and the value of such Plate, Horse, or Armes, as shall be brought in by subscription as aforesaid.
Be it Ordained by the Lords and Commons, That the said Committees, or any five or more of them, shall have hereby full power and authority to set, and let the Lands, Tenements and Hereditaments, of all Malignants, Delinquents, and Papists, which shall be seized and sequestred, according to the said Ordinances of Parliament for Sequestration of Delinquents Estates within the said County or City, from yeare to yeare, or by Lease or Leases, for the intents and purposes aforesaid, so long as the said Sequestration shall continue, And during such time shall have power and authority by themselves and Agents, to cut down, fell, and make use of all such Timber; upon any of their Estates, as they shall find necessary to use for the making of Fortifications within the said County and Citie; And in case the said Subscribers and Lenders, shall not receive full satisfaction of their principall Moneys and Interest, to be lent and subscribed as aforesaid, out of the Estates of Malignants, Delinquents, and Papists, and other Provision as aforesaid; That then the said Subscribers and Lenders, and every of them, shall by vertue of this Ordinance, have the Publike Faith of the Kingdom, for repayment of such sum and sums of Money, as shall be due unto them with interest as aforesaid.
Power to Committees to name Treasurers etc.; And call them to account on Oath.; Allowance.; Proviso.; Treasurers refusing to account, or making default, to be imprisoned; Committees may call to account on Oath all others concerned.; Power to Committee to administer Oaths.; All Commissioners, etc., refusing to take the Covenants to be disabled.
And be it further Ordained, That the said Committees, or any five or more of them, shall have full power and authority, to name and appoint such Treasurers, Collectors, and other Officers within the said County and City, as they shall think fit and convenient, for the better putting in execution of all and every the said Ordinances of Parliament, and of this present Ordinance, as well for receiving of all, or any the said Moneys; as also for the issuing out of the same, for the purposes aforesaid by Warrant, under the hands of the said Committee, in such manner, as the said Committee, or any five or more of them shall appoint; And call to an accompt from time to time, upon Oath, all such Treasurers, Collectors, and other persons, who shall receive any Moneys, Plate, Horse, or Arms, by vertue of this present Ordinance of Parliament, for the service aforesaid, and to give such fitting and reasonable allowances unto such person or persons, as shall be employed in the execution of the said Ordinances, or any of them for their charges and pains therein, as the said Committee, or any five or more of them shall think fit. Provided, That such allowances shall not exceed the respective Rates allowed by the severall Ordinances in other Counties of the Kingdome, for putting the said Ordinances in execution; And if any such Treasurers, Collectors, or other person or persons shall refuse to accompt, or pay in the Moneys, wherewith they are charged, within one moneth next after demand thereof made, Then the said Committees, or any five or more of them, shall secure their persons, and return their names, to one or both House of Parliament; And the said Committee, or any five or more of them, are hereby inabled and authorized, to call to accompt upon Oath, all such person and persons, as have at any time received or collected any sum or sums of Money within the said County or City, either by authority or pretence of Authority of Parliament, and for which they have not made even payment and accompt to the State. And the said Committee, or any five or more of them, are hereby authorized to Administer the severall Oaths specified in the former Ordinances, to such Commissioners or person, as have not already taken the same. Provided, That if any of the said Committee, Treasurers, Collectors, or other Officers, shall refuse or neglect, to take the Vow or Covenant appointed by the Ordinances of the 29. of June, 1643 or the Nationall Covenant appointed to be taken by every person within the three Kindomes of England, Scotland, and Ireland, being thereunto by the said Committee, or any three or more of them required, then they shall from henceforth stand disabled to do, or execute any thing, as one of the said Committee.
And be it further Ordained, by the said Lords and Commons, That the said Committee, or any three or more of them, shall have power and authority, and are hereby required to Administer the late Nationall Covenant appointed to be taken by the three Kingdomes of England, Scotland, and Ireland, to all persons within the said County and City, who ought to take the same by the late Instructions for that purpose, and have not already taken the same.
And be it further Ordained by the said Lords and Commons, That the said Committee, or any five or more of them, shall have power to call before them, all Ministers within the said County and City, that are scandalous in their lives or doctrines, or ill-affected to the Parliament or fomentors of this unnatural warre, or shall wilfully refuse obedience to the Ordinances of Parliament, or shall have deserted their ordinary place of Residence, not being imployed in the service of the King and Parliament; And they shall have full power to send for any witnesses, and examine any complaint, or receive any Testimony against them upon Oath of any person that shall be produced to give evidence against them; And upon such proofes of the aforesaid crimes, the said Committee, or any five or more of them, have hereby power to remove and eject all such scandalous Ministers and Schoolmasters, and in their place, to nominate and appoint such learned, able and godly persons as they shall think fit, the said ministers to be approved of by the Assembly of Divines; And shall cause all such Ministers and Schoolmasters so nominated, appointed and placed, to be put into possession of the said severall Churches and Schooles, who shall and may respecttively take, receive, and perceive to their owne use, the Profits and Revenues belonging to such Churches and places, in as large and ample manner as the severall ministers and persons in their severall places have formerly used to do.
And for the better going on, and performance of the said service and imployment, Be it further Ordained by the said Lords and Commons, That the said Committee, or any six or more of them, shall have power and authority, from time to time to raise such numbers of Horse and Foot, as they shall see necessary and expedient for the service aforesaid and associating with such other Counties or Cities, as they are, or shall be hereafter associated with, not exceeding the number of 4000. Men. And that the said Committee or any six or more of them, do from time to time nominate and appoint Colonels, Lievtenant-Collonels, Majors, Serjeant-Majors, Captaines, and all other Officers according to the Custome of Warre, for the Leading, Conducting, and Exercising all such Horse and Foot so raised and to be raised: And such person as is or shall be appointed Commander in chiefe of the Forces so raised, or to be raised in the sad County or City, is hereby desired to grant severall and respective Commissions to the said severall Commanders and Officers so chosen, and to be chosen and appointed by the said Committee, or any six or more of them, to all intents and purposes before mentioned: And the said Commanders and Officers shall have power, according to the course of War, to Lead the said Forces to any place which shall be fitting and convenient, and to give Battell, and fight with all such Forces as are or shall be raised without authority of both Houses of Parliament, or make Insurection Plunder or destroy His Majesties good Subjects, or leavy War against the Parliament, and them to Invade, Suppresse, Kill and Slay, as Enemies in the Kingdome.
And be it further Ordained, That the said Committee, or any six or more of them, shall have power and authority, and are hereby authorized from time to time to demand and take an Accompt of all Musters that shall be made by the severall Commissaries of the said County or City.
And be it further Ordained by the said Lords and Commons. That the said Commanders in chiefe so appointed, or to be appointed shall not have power to command forth of the said County or City, any of the said Forces of Horse or Foot so raised, or to be raised, and that shall be garrison'd for the defence of the said County or City, without the consent and good liking of the said Committee, or six of them.
And it is further Ordained by the said Lords and Commons, That the said Committee, or any five or more of them may Imprison all such as shall make any attempt, or do any Act tending to the disturbance of the proceedings of the said Committee, or the peace of the said County, and them to fine, not exceeding the sum of ten pounds upon any such offender every such offender to remain in prison, untill he hath satisfied and paid the said Fine: And all Majors, Sheriffs, Bailiffs, Constables, and all other His Majesties Officers and Ministers, are hereby required to be ayding and assisting to the said Committee as aforesaid, and to their Officers in the execution of this service.
And it is lastly Ordered, Declared and Ordained. That the good indeavours of the said Committee in the execution of the premisses, are and shall be taken as reall and publike Testimonies of their good affections to the publique-weale; And themselves and such others as shall act and be ayding and assisting to them, according to the true meaning of this present Ordinance, shall be for so doing held harmlesse, and indempnified by the Power of Parliament.
Provided, That whensoever here shall arise any question at the Committee, that concernes any of the person or persons of the said Committee, he or they so concerned shall withdraw him or themselves while the same is in debate.