Acts and Ordinances of the Interregnum, 1642-1660. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1911.
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Forasmuch as the true Protestant Religion, the Lawes and Liberties of the Subjects; and the Parliament are in danger to be subverted, Idolatry and Tyranny like to be introduced by the force and power of severall Armies raised by pretence of the Kings authority, consisting of Papists, and other dangerous and ill-affected persons of this Kingdome, and Irish Rebels, and of divers Popish souldiers, and others of Forraigne Kingdomes and Nations, being not under the Kings obedience, for the ruine and destruction of this Kingdome, unlesse the same be prevented by a considerable power of Forces to be suddenly raised by both Houses of Parliament, being with Gods blessing and assistance, the most probable way to preserve this Kingdome, our Religion and Libertie.
Be it therefore Ordained by the Lords and Commons Assembled in Parliament, and by Authority of the same, That the Committee of the Militia for the City of London, the DeputyLievtenants, and Committees of Parliament in every Countie, City, or place within this Realme, or any two or more of them within their severall Limits and Jurisdictions, shall and are hereby Authorized, and are hereby required and enjoyned from time to time, to raise, leavy, and Imprest, such number of Souldiers, Gunners and Chirurgions, for the defence of the King, Parliament and Kingdome, as shall bee appointed by both Houses of Parliament, by the Committee of both Kingdomes, or by Sir Thomas Fairfax, And to Command all Constables and other Officers to be ayding and assisting to them in the said service of Impresting; All which persons so to be Imprested and every of them, shall have such Imprest Money, Coat and Conduct Money, Wages and entertainment, and other necessary charges and allowances as shall be fit and convenient, according to the discretion of the Committees and Deputy-Lievtenants or any two or more of them respectively, and if any person or persons shall wilfully refuse so to be Imprested for the said Service, that then it shall and may be lawfull to and for the said persons so authorized as aforesaid to commit them to Prison, untill they shall yeeld obedience or pay the summe of ten pounds to the said Committees or Deputy-Lievtenants, to be imployed for the supply of the said service.
Provided alwayes that this Ordinance shall not extend to the pressing of any Clergyman, Scholar, or Student in any the Universities, Innes of Court, or Chancery, or houses of Law, or any the Trayned Bands, in any County, City or place, or of any person, rated in the last Subsidies granted by Parliament, or the Sonne of any person rated at five pounds goods, or three pounds lands, in the Subsidie Bookes, or of any person of the ranke or degree of an Esquire or upwards, or the Sonne of any such person, or the Sonne of the Widow, of any such person; or to the pressing of any person under the age of eighteene, or above the age of fifty, or of the Members or Officer of either House or Parliament, or of the Meniall servants of the Peeres of the Kingdome, or Officers of either of the said Houses, or any the Assistants or Attendants of the Lords House, or any of their Meniall Servants, or any the Inhabytants of the Isle of Wight, or Cinque Ports or of any Marriner, Seaman, Waterman, or Fisherman, or any Officer imployed in the Office of Excise, or in the Office of Customes for Tunnage or Poundage.