Acts and Ordinances of the Interregnum, 1642-1660. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1911.
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[9 January, 1642/3.]
That the Lords Lieutenants of the several Counties of Warwick and Stafford, and Cities and Counties of Coventry and Lichfeild, or the Committees of Parliament of the said Cities and Counties respectively, or any three or more of them, with all convenient Speed, do summon the several Gentlemen, Freeholders, and other Inhabitants, of the said several Cities and Counties, as well within Liberties and Corporations as without, that do or are able to bear or find Arms, to such Places, in the said several Counties and Cities, as they hold most fitting; and at such Meetings, to take a View what Arms and Force can be raised in the said Cities and Counties respectively, and examine the Defects of Arms and Ammunition, and to consult of some fitting Course how to have the Want of Arms and other Defects to be supplied; and at such Meetings, or at any other fit Time and Times, with the Assistance of the Committee for the Propositions and Subscriptions in the several Counties and Cities aforesaid, and Parts adjacent, or any Two of them, shall and may propound to all the Inhabitants of the said Cities, that are able to bear or find Arms, or to contribute towards the same, what present and imminent Danger and Necessity the whole Kingdom is now reduced unto, by the wicked Advice, Attempts, and Conspiracies of Papists and other Persons now about His Majesty; and to propound to them to join in Association and mutual Defence of one another, according to the Form of an Association hereunto annexed; and to require them to set down in Writing, and subscribe, what Arms for Horse and Foot, what Horse, either for Dragooners or others, they will have in Readiness upon every just Occasion, for the Defence of the said Cities and Counties.
Secondly, The better to prevent the Plundering and Spoiling of the said Cities and Counties, and the Parts adjacent, and to have Means for the Furnishing of Arms and Ammunition, Making of Fortifications, and Payment of the Garrisons, Officers, and Soldiers, and other Public necessary charges, that there be forthwith raised, in the said several Cities, and Counties respec tively, and in the Corporations, Constabularies, and Parishes thereof, such Sums of Money as shall necessarily be disbursed and expended for the Uses aforesaid, the Sums to be rated and assessed in like Sort as was the Four Hundred Thousand Pounds granted by Act this present Parliament, wherein the Persons who have not subscribed to the Parliament's late Propositions shall be assessed and their Assessments levied, in such Sort as by the Ordinance late made for the City of London, and the Parts adjacent, such like Persons are to be assessed, and their Assessments levied; for which Sums of Money, so rated and levied, and expended as aforesaid, the Lords Lieutenants and Committees shall be accountable for their Proceedings therein to both Houses of Parliament, and none else.
And for the better levying of the said Sums of Money, that the said Lords Lieutenants, or the said Committees of the said Counties respectively, or any Three or more of them, shall and may assess and tax, or cause to be assessed and taxed, the said Sums, upon the said several Cities and Counties, and the Corporations, Towns, Constabularies, and Parishes within the same, in like Manner as is aforesaid; and that they, or any Three or more of them, nominate and appoint Treasurers, Collectors, and Assessors, in every of the said Counties, for the assessing, receiving, and collecting the said Sums of Money; and shall and may grant Warrants, under their Hands and Seals, in Writing, to any Constable or any Officer whatsoever, to raise and levy the said Sums so to be assessed and taxed as aforesaid, upon all such Persons upon whom any such Sums shall be so assessed and set, that do refuse or neglect to pay the same; it shall and may be lawful to and for the said Assessors, or any other Persons to whom Warrants by the Lords Lieutenants and Committees respectively shall be granted, to levy the said Sums so assessed by Way of Distress and Sale of the Goods of the Person so assessed and refusing; and if any Person so distrained shall make Resistance, it shall and may be lawful, to and for the respective Lords Lieutenants and Committees, to send any of the Trained Bands, or other Soldiers, of the respective Counties and Cities aforesaid, to compel the said Parties so refusing to Obedience of this Ordinance; and in Case no Distress is or may be found, then the said respective Lords Lieutenants and Committees aforesaid, or any Three or more of them, shall and may commit such Person and Persons, so refusing to pay as aforesaid, to some Common Gaol, there to remain without Bail or Mainprise, until Payment made of such sum and sums as aforesaid.
Thirdly, That all Sheriffs, Justices of Peace, Mayors, Bailiffs, Constables, and all other His Majesty's Officers, as well within Liberties as without, be from Time to Time aiding and assisting unto the said Lords Lieutenants and Committees, in Execution of the Power to them given by the Lords and Commons in Parliament, and of these Instructions.
Fourthly, That no Treasurer or Receiver of any Money shall issue out any Money, but under the Hands of the Lords Lieutenants and Committees, or any Three of them, in every County respectively; and that the several Lords Lieutenants and Committees do not sign or grant any Warrants, for the issuing or paying any Sum or Sums, but for the Furnishing of Arms and Ammunition, Making of Fortifications, Payment of Officers and Soldiers, and other necessary Public Charges, tending to the Safety and Preservation of the said Cities and Counties, and not otherwise.
Fifthly, That the said Lords Lieutenants and Committees, of every the said Cities and Counties respectively, or any Three or more of them, shall and may, from Time to Time, raise such and so many of the Trained Bands, and other Persons inhabiting in the said Cities and Counties, as they shall judge necessary and fitting, to enter into the Houses of all Papists, and other Persons that are voted to be Delinquents by both or either Houses of Parliament; or that have put in Execution the Commission of Array; or that have been present with or aiding and assisting to His Majesty, in this unnatural War against the Parliament; or that, being of Ability, have not contributed upon the Propositions of raising of Horse, Money, or Plate, for the Defence of the King and Parliament; or that have refused to send Horse and Arms to the Musters when by the Deputy Lieutenants appointed by the Power of Parliament they having been required so to do; or such Clergymen and others that have publicly preached or declared themselves to oppose, disgrace, or revile the Proceedings of both or either Houses of Parliament; and to seize upon the Arms, Ammunition, and Horses fit for Service in the War, that belong to such Person or Persons, the same Horses, Arms, and Ammunition, to be employed and disposed of by the Direction of the said Lords Lieutenants and Committees of the said several and respective Cities and Counties, or any Three or more of them, for the Public Service and Defence of the several Cities and Counties aforesaid.
Sixthly, That the said Lords Lieutenants and Committees, or any Three or more of them, do cause the several Companies of the Trained Bands and Voluntiers to be put into Regiments, and to nominate, appoint, and place Colonels, Lieutenant Colonels, Sergeant Majors, Captains, Lieutenants, and other Officers, in every Regiment and Company where any such are wanting, or when such as are and have been nominated have refused to execute those Places.
Seventhly, That the Dragooners be put into Companies, and that One Hundred and Twelve be allotted to a Company and that each Company of Dragooners have an experienced Soldier, to be a Corporal, and to have the present pay of a Corporal.
Eighthly, That the said Lords Lieutenants and Committees, in each County respectively, or any Three or more of them shall and may give Command and Directions, from Time to Time, to secure and fortify all Bridges, Causeys, and Passages, and, in Times of Approach of an Enemy, or Fear of any Invasion by an Enemy, to pull down or stop the Bridges, Causeys, Passages, and to cut the Banks, in the said Counties respectively; and to have Power to fortify and secure any Town, Hundred, or Hamlet, where the said Town, Hundred, or Hamlet, are willing to do the same at their own proper Charges; and also to have Power, at all Times, to search and stop all Barges, Boats, or other Vessels passing by Water, for the Safety of the said Cities and Counties and Places adjacent.
Ninthly, It is further Ordered and Declared, That the said Committees, for the said several Cities and Counties respectively, shall or may call unto their Assistance such Person or Persons as they shall think fit, for the better and more orderly Execution and Performance of these Instructions.
Tenthly, The Lords Lieutenants and Committees, or any Three or more of them, shall and may imprison, or commit to safe, Custody, all and every such Persons as, being able and have had due Summons, do notwithstanding refuse, or wilfully neglect, to appear at Musters, or to send some able Persons, to be allowed of by the Captains or Chief Officer of the Company in his Behalf.
And it is lastly Ordered and Declared. That the Instructions of the 15th Day of August last past, for John Hailes, Isaack Bromage, Esquires, John Barker Alderman, Thomas Bassett Alderman, and Robert Phillipps Gentleman, appointed to take Care of the Peace of the City of Coventry, shall be henceforth void, and of none Effect.