Proceedings in Parliament 1624: The House of Commons. Originally published by British History Online, 2015.
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SATURDAY, 20 MARCH 1624
I. JOURNAL OF THE HOUSE OF COMMONS, PA, HC/CL/JO/1/13
[CJ 744; f. 74v]
Sabbati, 20 Martii
Jacques de Best sworn.
L. 2. An act for the naturalizing of Jacques de Best. Ordered to be engrossed.
L. 2. An act for the making of the river of Thames navigable to Oxford.
SIR WILLIAM COPE. To have the bill have a free passage. To have it committed.
Sir Edward Coke
Sir William Cope
Sir Henry Poole
Knights, burgesses, Oxford[shire] and Berkshire
Sir Richard Harrison
Mr. [Edmund] Dunch
Sir Guy Palmes
Sir Isaac Wake
Burgesses of University [of] Oxford and Oxford town
Sir George Manners
Sir Hugh Myddelton
Sir Clement Throckmorton
Sir Thomas Estcourt
Sir John Walter
Monday, 2 o'clock, Star Chamber.
[f. 75] Mayor of Winchelsea brought to the bar and made his submission. Heartily sorry for his offence and desires pardon.
Discharged, making his submission in the town and paying his fees.
DOCTOR [BARNABY] GOOCH reports the bill of usury. The amendments twice read.
The debate of this bill put off until Monday morning.
SIR EDWIN SANDYS. Before we enter into the debate of the great business, will state the business. In nature generally, 2 measures: one, honourable; 2, of necessity. First measure, the work to be performed: 5, whereof 3 well delivered.
- 1. To consider what to do. What the work of this year. This may be divided into his parts: fortifying this kingdom, defence of Ireland and the Low Countries, and setting forth a royal navy.
- 2. What charge will do this? A little too much loses somewhat. A little too little loses all. To think of other means than subsidies and fifteens. A 4th proposition arising from his Majesty's gracious declaration.
5th point, which must be the first in execution, though last in debate: primum executione, ultimum intentione. What answer to give to this demand of the King? Thinks we may make a satisfactory answer to his Majesty and yet not oppress the subject.
SIR ROBERT KILLIGREW. As he has divided the business into 5 heads, so to debate the first before we go to any other.
Mr. Secretary Calvert sent up to the Lords with 12 bills: 3 private and 9 public.
L. 2. An act to enable justices of peace to give restitution of possession in certain cases. Ordered to be engrossed.
[f. 75v] L. 1. An act for confirmation of exchange of lands between the Prince's Highness and Sir Lewis Watson.
MR. SECRETARY [CALVERT] reports from the Lords. Lord Keeper told him the Prince had moved his Majesty for committees of both Houses to attend him for clearing of my Lord of Buckingham, tomorrow. My Lord Keeper to be the mouth of both Houses.
Mr. Speaker went into the chair.
SIR EDWIN SANDYS reports from the committee. The committee have resolved by a general vote that after his Majesty's declaration, they think fit to have granted three subsidies and 3 fifteens, to be levied in such time and manner as the House shall think fit.
They also think fit to have a select committee to frame a convenient and satisfactory answer to his Majesty, touching his demands of 6 subsidies and 12 fifteens.
And thought fit that Sir Robert Cotton and Mr. [John] Selden to prepare precedents for this tenure against Monday morning.
[f. 76] Resolved, upon question, without any negative voice, that after his Majesty shall have been pleased to declare himself for the utter dissolution and discharge of the 2 treaties for the marriage and the Palatinate, the House, in pursuit of their advice given to his Majesty and towards support of the war which is likely to ensue, and more particularly for those 4 points proposed by his Majesty — namely, the defence of this realm, the securing of Ireland, the assistance of our neighbours the states of the United Provinces and other his Majesty's friends and allies, and the setting out of his Majesty's royal navy — will grant for the present 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens, to be levied in such time and manner as they shall be pleased afterwards to appoint, and to be paid unto the hands and expended by the direction of such committees or commissioners as shall hereafter be agreed on in this present session of Parliament.
Resolved, upon question, to have a select committee to agree upon an answer to be made unto his Majesty.
The former subcommittee of 13 and Mr. Treasurer, Secretary Conway, Sir John Savile, Mr. [Edward] Alford, Sir Isaac Wake, Mr. [John] Coke. These are, this afternoon, Court of Wards, to agree upon an answer to be made unto his Majesty touching his demand of 6 subsidies and 12 fifteens.
[f. 76v] Resolved, upon a 3rd question, that Sir Robert Cotton and Mr. [John] Selden shall be required to look up precedents and prepare them for this House with all speed.
Resolved, upon a 4th question, without a negative voice, that these 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens shall be paid within the space of one year after the King has declared himself.
Sabbati, 20 Martii, post meridiem
L. 1. An act for the confirmation of a decree in Chancery made by the consent of the lord of the manor of Painswick in the county of Gloucester and the customary tenants of the same manor.
II. DIARY OF JOHN HAWARDE, WILTSHIRE AND SWINDON ARCHIVES, 9/34/2
Saturni, 20 Martii, 1623
2. L. Bill pur naturalizinge Jacques de Best.
Sur question, sera engrosse.
2. L. Bill pur conveyant le river del Thames al Oxford. Cest bill came from the Lords.
Sur question, committe.
Maier de Winchelsea fait submission et fuit discharged.
Debate sur order del Huise.
DOCTOR [BARNABY] GOOCH reporte le bill del usurie.
Deferre al farther debate par order.
SIR EDWIN SANDYS. Unhonorable measure and autre de necessitie. Insiste sur John Savile's 3 points. Adde:
SIR ROBERT KILLIGREW. Pur le first part solemente.
[Committee of the Whole House]
Le Speaker sitt by and Sir Edwin Sandys in le chaire.
[p. 220] Mr. [John] Coke. [Blank]
Mr. [Charles] Price. [Blank]
Sir Thomas Jermyn. [Blank]
Sir George Chudleigh. [Blank]
Recorder de Londres. 3 subsidies, 3 fifte[ens].
Sir Henry Mildmay. 3 outworkes, 3 subsidies. 3 inworkes, 2 fiveteenes.
2. L. Bill pur restitucion de possession [par] j[ustices] de peace.
Sur question, ingrosse.
L. 1. Bill pur Sir Lewis Watson. Bill ingrossed, which came from the Lords.
Wee sent diverse bills to the Lordes and they appointed both Howses to attende the Kinge tomorrow for the cleeringe of the Duke of Buckingham.
[Committee of the Whole House]
Sir Edwin Sandys to the chair agayne.
Mr. [William] Mallory. 2 subsidies, 4 fifteenes.
Sir Edward Coke. 3 subsidies, 3 fiftenes.
Sir Robert Phelips. Le common proverb: Il qui done to[o] much may lose a little, he that gyves to[o] litle may lose all. [p. 221] 3 subsidies, 2 fivet[eens]. A clause to come together agayne, as in temps E. 3, and to assume then to doe the lyke or greater with reall performance if there be cause.
Sir Edward Cecil. [Blank]
Secretarye Calvert. 3 subsidies, 3 fiveteenes.
Sir Peter Heyman. Agree al cest.
Sir Dudley Digges. [Blank]
Mr. Tresorer. [Blank]
Mr. [William] Nyell. [Blank]
Sir Francis Seymour. 3 subsidie[s], 3 fiveteenes. Papists doble rates.
Sir George More. [Blank]
Mr. Sollicitor. For the question and select commitee to set it downe.
Sir John Savile. Pur proporconinge del cost somme.
Sir Edward Coke. [Blank]
Sir John Savile. Peticion pur benefite de recusants [et] pur les [pretermitted] customes.
Sir William Herbert. Differ; d'avoir null peticon pur retribucon.
Sir Thomas Jermyn. [Blank]
Sir Walter Earle. [Blank]
Mr. [Edward] Alford. [Blank]
Sir Robert Phelips. Versus question. [p. 222] Subcommittee de framer le question.
Mr. [Christopher] Wandesford. Un question et donque subcommittee.
Sir George More. Al mesme purpoase.
Mr. Controller. Sans controllmente.
Mr. [John] Glanville states le question bien in 2x parts: 3 subsidies to be gyven to theise uses; 3 fift[eens], with theise cautions after his Majesties declaracion. Theise inserted in the preamble of the acte.
As many as think fitte that after bothe and utter dissolvinge of the treaties, mache and Palatinate, le Huise in pursuite de lour advise done al Roy et pur le supporte del warre and partycularmente 4 points — defence of this realm, and pur le continuance securing Ireland and les ports, le navy, assistance dallies, viz., les states del United Provinces and other his Majesties [sic] freindes et allies et les Hollanders — the Howse will be plaised de doner 3 sub[sidies] [et] 3 fifte[eens] deste levie al temps depuis agreede upon and deste paie et expended accordant al directons del cest Huise en cest Parliamente par committees come hereafter shal be agreede upon in cest Parliament.
Sur question, agree par tout.
Mr. [Edward] Alford. For Sir Robert Cotton and Mr. [John] Selden to bringe presidents [sic] for this and le Royes declaracion.
[p. 223] SIR EDWIN SANDYS fait report al Huise et donque le Speaker.
- 1. Sur primeer question. [Resolve].
- 2. Pur committee. Sur question, resolve to be prepared againste Mondaye nexte.
- 3. Pur presidents. Sur question, resolve.
III. DIARY OF JOHN HOLLES, BL, HARL. MS 6,383
Saturday, the 20th of March
SIR EDWIN SANDYS. In great business there are two measures, of honour and necessity. Then the branches to be considered: what the work is of this year for the defence of the kingdom and to resist the King of Spain. This divided into his parts, furnishing this kingdom, strengthening Ireland, [f. 108v] defending the Low Countries and sending out a navy. It is an old proverb, a little too much loses something but a little too little loses all.
SIR ROBERT KILLIGREW moved to have the first of these first debated and considered of.
Then the Speaker went out of the chair and Sir Edwin Sandys put in.
[Committee of the Whole House]
Mr. [Christopher] Brooke. Peace and war are the most essential parts of the King's prerogative. Not fit here to dispute the work among 460 persons. We must give answer to the King's demands. Peremptorily to conclude the work of this year, the King will say, quis nos iudices fecit.
Sir Thomas Hoby. The King does not expressly demand 6 subsidies and 12 fifteens, but he thinks so much will serve the turn. The King says that what shall be given shall be employed in the war, but what war he does not set down. He moved, if the King will declare himself, to promise to furnish out the business as occasion will require.
Sir Thomas Jermyn. In provinces lost the condition of recovery is difficult, sometimes impossible.
Sir George Chudleigh. At the very time of the treaty in 88, the Spaniard was upon our shore with his navy; that the noise of the ordnance was heard by the commissioners. In the first place, we must consider the necessity of the people.
The Recorder. We must first give answer to the King's demand. The King says if the treaties be broken, war may follow; he does not say it must follow. [f. 109] The King would have us fix upon particulars in giving. Yesterday, some would give 1, 2, 3, 4, 6 subsidies. He moved 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens.
Sir Henry Mildmay. According to the King's speech, this business is divided into 3 outworks and 3 inworks. The outworks are:
He moved 3 subsidies and 6 fifteens.
[f. 111v] SIR EDWARD COKE said it was against the orders of the House for any of our House to bring a message from the Lords.
[Committee of the Whole House]
[f. 109] Sir Edward Coke would give 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens, which was about £300,000.
Sir Robert Phelips was never so distracted and divided in himself as this Parliament. These fatal treaties have hanged [sic] over us as a fatal comet. This is a rent commonwealth in respect of some great persons' oppressions. We must give the King satisfaction for the work present and for hereafter, wherein we must give ourselves and the country also satisfaction. The Prince's interest does most move me, whose honour is now at the stake. We may guess at the charge and proportion of the work for this year. Three subsidies and 3 fifteens come to about £360,000. Though this sum be not accepted, yet we shall avoid the imputation of losing this opportunity. He agrees with those that give 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens with those limitations and restrictions the King sets down and the wisdom of the House shall think fit. [f. 109v] The King's demand is not positive. He would have a clause inserted in this gift as was in an act of Parliament of one of the greatest kings we had, viz., Edward the 3rd, wherein was set down a time when the Parliaments should meet again.
Sir Edward Cecil will take only one point, which is of greatest difficulty, to find out the money. War is not like a building or fortification, one cannot measure it by foot or by rod. If our cassocks will not serve the turn, we must give our cloaks; if not they serve, our shirts, our skins, our blood, our lives.
Secretary Calvert. We have passed the river Rubicon, there is no going back. A war must follow, both offensive and defensive; this last first to be thought of. De modo (of the war) is not here to be handled, though the wisdom of the House is capable enough of it. He concluded upon 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens.
Sir Peter Heyman does not dissent from the sum.
Sir Dudley Digges would have the ports that never yet gave to be brought in; and whereas Sir Peter Heyman said before that we that serve for the countries must look for their satisfaction, Digges said he wondered that those that served only for the ports would say so, and spoke something more concerning the wars.
Sir Peter Heyman replied that the country must avow what we did, and said he had been an apprentice to the wars and should understand them better than he that never had been in them (meaning Digges).
Sir Francis Seymour gives 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens. [f. 110] He would have the papists give double.
The Solicitor moved to have it put to question for the sum and the committee to set it down.
Sir John Savile would have us go on by degrees, first a defensive, then an offensive war. That the masters of the gown were most forward in giving; it may be they reckoned without their host, and so it may be we, and must reckon twice. He was not satisfied how this money should be bestowed, it was left generally.
Sir Edward Coke would have this gift accompanied with an humble petition for a pardon to do honest men good, to have the bills against informers now pass and that of supersedeas, of certioraries and others, but not by way of condition, merchant-like.
Sir John Savile would have the King grant us the benefit against recusants towards this sum, next for pretermitted customs.
Sir William Herbert dissented from [Sir Edward] Coke and [Sir John] Savile, for he would now look for no retribution. That the people would be satisfied giving this for the war, being given to the war and not to the King.
Sir Thomas Jermyn concurred with Herbert that he would not have the King pressed for these things, thinking the King would grant them without asking.
Mr. [Edward] Alford. In other Parliaments, they would ask their countries before they would give.
[f. 110v] Sir Robert Phelips. This is such a question as has not come in question in this House. He would have a subcommittee to consider of the question.
Mr. [John] Glanville. This that we now give is not a gift but a depositum for use of the kingdom.
Sir Henry Poole would have us break the treaty of peace.
Mr. [Edward] Alford would have us search precedents for setting down the question, which he moved to be thus: that as many as think fit, that after his Majesty has been pleased to declare himself for the utter dissolution of the two treaties of marriage and the Palatinate, that in pursuit of our advice we will, etc.
Mr. [Edward] Alford moved to search the precedents how to examine the proceedings of the Council of War in disposing of the subsidies, for that we could not call the Lords to account.
[f. 111v] Sir Robert Phelips moved that [Mr. John] Selden and Sir Robert Cotton should search the precedents to see how kings have formerly declared themselves for breaking off treaties.
SIR NATHANIEL RICH moved that these 3 subsidies should be paid within a year after the King's declaration.
And so it was ordered, and that this was given his Majesty towards support of the war likely to ensue.
IV. DIARY OF SIR THOMAS JERVOISE, HAMPSHIRE RECORD OFFICE, 44M69/F4/20/1
Saturday, 20th March
SIR EDWIN SANDYS.
- [1.] The strengthening of Ireland, the defence of our friends the Low Countrymen.
- 2. How this money shall be levied.
- 3. How it shall be bestowed.
SIR ROBERT KILLIGREW.
- [1.] That the work is.
- 2. The charge.
- 3. How it may be levied.
- 4. A caution.
- 5. How it may be employed.
[Committee of the Whole House]
Mr. [John] Coke. Question, whether the King have a purpose to engage us in a war in the Palatinate or somewhere else upon the King of Spain.
[p. 73] The question: whether that after his Majesty has declared himself under his hand for the dissolving of both treaties, one of the marriage, the other of the Palatinate, this House will give 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens for the supporting of the said war, the defence of the ports, and the assistance and defence of Ireland, our neighbours of the United Provinces and other his Majesty's friends and allies, and setting out his Majesty's royal navy, the money to be put into the hands of such committees as hereafter shall hereafter shall [sic] be agreed upon by this present sessions [sic] of Parliament.
[p. 74] The question agreed upon by the Commons the 20th of March. That after his Majesty shall have been pleased to declare himself for the utter dissolution and discharge of the 2 treaties for the marriage and for the Palatinate, that in pursuit of the House's advice given to his Majesty and toward support of the war which is likely [to] ensue, and more particularly for those 4 points proposed by his Majesty — namely, the defence of the realm; securing of Ireland; the assistance of our neighbours, the states of the United Provinces and other his Majesty's friends and allies; and setting out his Majesty's royal navy — there shall be granted for the present 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens to be levied in such time [and] manner as the House shall be pleased after to appoint to be paid into the hands and to be expended by the directions of such committees or commissioners [p. 75] as hereafter shall be agreed upon in this present session of Parliament.
V. DIARY OF JOHN LOWTHER, CUMBRIA ARCHIVE CENTRE, CARLISLE, DLONS/L/2/1
[20 March 1624]
DOCTOR [BARNABY] GOOCH. Report for usury. The title against excessive usury leaves out against the law of God £8 per cent for 7 years and to the end of next session after, upon a day after recommitted.
SIR EDWIN SANDYS. To estate [sic] the cause of so many points' happiness there is two measures, honour and necessity, the utmost perfection to be done at first is not to be done. 5 grounds, 3 by Sir John Savile. First, what is the work of this year, divided into the provision for defence of us, Ireland, our neighbours and the navy. Second, what charge will defray it? A little too much loses somewhat, too little all. Advise for a new way of levying good. This Sir John Savile['s] 4th [point], to see how disposed. [His] 5[th point] must be first examined last in debate, viz., what answer we shall give to the King is the flower of these 4 roots, [f. 39v] which he thinks he shall be able to do without burden or distaste.
SIR ROBERT KILLIGREW. To proceed with the first.
[Committee of the Whole House]
Sir Edwin Sandys to the chair offered.
Sir Robert Harley repeated the measures to fit us to it. He proposed the last first.
Mr. [Christopher] Brooke thought the order good, but not to be particulated. Therefore, he agrees to the last to answer presently.
Sir Thomas Hoby agree[s] and fit to be questioned. Though Sir Edwin Sandys moved that the King desires not 6 s[ubsidies], 12 f[ifteens], but thinks it will serve and a like proportion, he thinks what war is not yet reposed. He thinks it is a particular answer to say we will defray the charge whatsoever, so as/
Mr. [John] Coke. We cannot answer before debate, and until particular we shall be in doubt, in jealousy. The consequent war cannot be [in the] Palatinate by the King's speech; therefore, provision, and Low Countries.
Mr. [Charles] Price. To begin with the last, why not we begin with 6 s[ubsidies] and 12 f[ifteens] committed and to be levied 2 or 3 as may need.
Sir Thomas Jermyn. To answer Mr. [John] Coke, for Palatine provinces lost, difficult to be recovered. So this at present and so intended.
Sir G[eorge] Chudleigh. [?Since] Sir Edwin Sandys's motion begot a question, he agrees to it and joins the measures in one, and thinks preparation may be used as a stratagem and to prevent the like.
Recorder. The last first. The King says war may follow, but concludes not, 3.
[f. 40] Sir H[enry] Mildmay. The King, as Moses, labours by war. The King three outward, 3 in[ward]. First, Low Countries, princes disbanded. Ireland, navy, ports. 3 subsidies and fifteens will do it.
Forcible entry in estates not freehold helped. Not committed but engrossed.
A bill for exchange between the Prince and Sir [Lewis] Watson.
[Committee of the Whole House]
Mr. [William] Mallory says he cannot in 2 months apprehend the order. Tells of his country. 2 s[ubsidies], 4 f[ifteens].
Sir Edward Coke. Ultimus finis to satisfy the King, for he declares for war as he may be assisted. 3 s[ubsidies], 3 f[ifteens].
Sir R[obert] Phelips. Much divided in this cause as he protests. The treaties dissolved will rectify us at home as well as abroad, which great men in place do to satisfy the King at present, in future, us and our country. The particular proposition of the issuing out of the money by our treasurers moves [?little] in respect of the [?stores], but the Prince's word leads. He thinks we may conjecture the charge. He agrees with the [?highest], 3 s[ubsidies], 3 f[ifteens], with restrictions as we, and the King give leave a clause to return as tempus E. 3 when we will give this and more as exigency require for reputation abroad. Then he preached that etc.
[f. 40v] Sir E[dward] Cecil. To one only divide into two. He thinks we are farther off today than yesterday. War is not to be measured by the foot as fortification, yet what he gives, [£]300,000.
Secretary Calvert. A war will be defensive, offensive. For the 4 helps Palatinate also intended as the King's honour is engaged as he said. Therefore, to the first, for 3 s[ubsidies], 3 f[ifteens] and to offer to the King never to leave him.
Sir Peter Heyman said the war is drawn on by us, therefore drawn on by us as his speech imparts. So subsidy drawn on by us, yet let it be declared by the King's sensibility, and insensibility.
Sir Dudley Digges, contra. That the princes of Germany and the King of Denmark's satisfaction [£]80,000 added and the [Cinque] Ports and all other to be drawn in.
Sir P[eter] H[eyman] returned.
Sir Thomas Edmondes. Glad the first question was declined, and that we may do it with alacrity. 3 s[ubsidies], 3 f[ifteens]. To question.
Mr. [Nathaniel] Tomkins. To the 3 s[ubsidies], 3 f[ifteens]. And to have with it the bills of grace and pardon large and so to return content.
[f. 41] Mr. [William] Coryton seconds Mr. [Nathaniel] Tomkins to have a session in due time and to have it with/
Mr. [William] Nyell. To give it with alacrity and it will end war, for the Spaniards know us too hard for them. Speaks out of experience and that the English look for the day and will leave him no ship but his own.
Sir F[rancis] S[eymour] agrees to 3 s[ubsidies], 3 fifteens, papists double.
Sir G[eorge] More. This content all. How to levy?
Solicitor. To question, and a committee to set down.
Sir John S[avile] knows what to run contrary we have agreed to give I to put a sword. First, a defensive, next offensive. There may be a mystery, if we had first gone to the particulars and set down every charge, can any rise and answer me to what? If you do not reduce it to that you err. Perhaps it will not suffice. To have our own stewards is to no purpose. We reckon without our host. This satisfies not unless how it be proportioned.
Sir E[dward] Coke. The causes to be in subsidy, the committees ourselves. [f. 41v] This a probationer to yet more. To be accompanied with a petition for pardon to honest men, etc., and bills for the commonwealth to go with our answer.
Sir John Savile adds to have the benefit of recusants towards this, and the next for pretermitted custom.
Sir William Herbert dislikes to send up those without request, showing we receive another retribution.
Sir Thomas Jermyn. Needs no distribution next for pardons, and not to prevent it.
Sir Walter Earle thinks the sum proportionable. The question to give with the caution.
Mr. [Edward] Alford. None to retract but to consider former Parliaments. Yet he assents so we be tied to no more but as occasion.
Sir Robert Phelips. Not fit for question, though often demanded. To have a subcommittee to agree the question.
[Mr. Christopher] Wandesford. To go to the first question.
Comptroller. To question whether the King should have 3 s[ubsidies], 3 f[ifteens], or not.
[Mr. John] Glanville. Fit for question. Admires the vote. This were high if no declaration. Directs 3 s[ubsidies], 3 f[ifteens] to this business. The modus after this depositum.
[f. 42] Sir Guy Palmes. Against the sudden. All to be prepared by committee.
Sir E[dwin] Sandys. To collect all, his duty. All agreed in 3 s[ubsidies], 3 f[ifteens]. The difference of additions to it. To be upon declaration to the King's 4 uses to be indicated in the act, limitations for receipt and expense.
Sir H[enry] Poole. A doubt of the third treaty of peace to be broken. He cut off. Not to be allowed.
The question writ down and though Spain be allies, yet the general words are better than the Low Countries.
3 subsidies to be granted with 3 fifteens with caution, uno volo to be received by our treasurers.
SIR E[DWIN] SANDYS reports the resolution of the committee proat.
VI. DIARY OF EDWARD NICHOLAS, TNA, SP 14/166
Saturday, 200 Martii 1623
An act for the naturalizing of Jacques de Best. 2. L., he having here in the House this day taken the oaths of supremacy and allegiance.
The mayor of Winchelsea this day made his submission on his knee at the bar, acknowledging his fault and saying he was heartily sorry for it.
SIR EDWIN SANDYS. That in the nature of this business there are 2 measures:
- 1. The measure of honour.
- 2. The measure of necessity, which is according to the ability of the person of whom money is to be raised.
To consider of 5 heads.
- The first is what the work of this year is in this great action for the defence of this kingdom against the great monarch, which is/
- 2. What charge will defray it, wherein the proverb is to be considered: a little too much loses somewhat; a little too little loses all.
- 3. The means how this to be raised.
- 4. When this money is levied, a caution to know how this shall be disposed.
- Fifthly, (and this fift[h] must be when it comes to execution [of] the first part) what answer we shall give to his Majesty's demand, wherein we must have care to give such an answer as may satisfy his Majesty and not engage the subject for more than this year, and this will grow out of the roots of these 4 first heads.
SIR ROBERT KILLIGREW desires that, according to Sir Edwin Sandys's motion, he would have everyone speak but to one point at a time and those that shall depart from this order that the Speaker should check him.
Sir Edwin Sandys is called [f. 96v] to sit in the chair, the Speaker being gone out, that we might debate of this business at a committee [of the whole House].
Mr. Christopher Brooke would not have us consider or meddle with what is to be done for that were to press on the prerogative of the crown, it being the inherent prerogative of the King to make war, etc. He would have us, therefore, first consider of the fift[h] head Sir E[dwin] S[andys] delivered that we might give his Majesty a direct answer.
Sir T[homas] Posthumous Hoby thinks we should give, first, an answer to the King's demands of 6 subsidies and 12 fifteens; and he thinks that if we answer the King that if his Majesty will declare himself, that we will bear the charge of what shall be needful.
Mr. [John] Coke, master of Requests. That before we have debated of Sir E[dwin] S[andys's] 4 first points, to give an answer to the fift[h] will not give his Majesty satisfaction, for that were still to walk the clouds and to stick upon generals. He thinks that the King's declaration has a further extent than the Palatinate, for the King will declare the breach of both treaties and the King foresees that a war will follow such a declaration and therefore the King would have us provide for the back door in Ireland, for assistance of the Hollanders, the setting forth of the ships, and fortifying of the ports, and the King does not thereby confine us to a war in or for the Palatinate.
Mr. Charles Price would have us first consider of an answer to the King's demands of 6 subsidies, etc., and to [f. 97] give something for the present occasion.
Sir George Chudleigh would not have us give the King an answer in general terms, which if we fall to the fift[h] of Sir E[dwin] S[andys's] parts we are like to do. He would have us begin with the consideration of the ability of the country, for before we give he would have us know what we are able to do.
Mr. Recorder. He thinks we must first begin with Sir E[dwin] S[andys's] 5th part. We advised the King to make a declaration to break both treaties, and the stop of this declaration is what the King propounds, which is the means to undergo a war that may follow; and the present businesses to be done are the fortifying of Ireland, etc. [Blank] He will speak to Sir E[dwin] S[andys's] 5t[h] part, what answer we should give to the King's demands, and would that we should answer that we do beseech his Majesty that he will presently declare the treaties broken. To consider that it is impossible that those 6 subsidies, etc., can now be levies, and would that we now answer we will for the present give his Majesty 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens, and make good our declaration which is much more than 6 subsidies and 12 fifteens, and this shall be done at our other meetings at Michaelmas and the spring as his Majesty promises and as occasion shall be offered.
Sir H[enry] Mil[d]may would that we give 3 subsidies and 6 fifteens.
Here the Speaker went into the chair that we might send bills to the Lords, and in the meantime these bills were read.
An act to enable justices of peace to deliver restitution of possession in certain cases. 2. L. To be engrossed. r. p.
Here the messengers being returned from the Lords, the committee goes on with the debate of the great business. [f. 97v] But first, MR. SECRETARY CALVERT says that the Lord Keeper said that the Prince his Highness said that the King has, at his Highness's motion, appointed tomorrow to hear the message of both Houses concerning the clearing of the Duke of Buckingham, and that the Lord Keeper is appointed to deliver it from both Houses to his Majesty.
Whereto our House seems to agree.
[Committee of the Whole House]
Concerning the great business of answering the King.
Mr. [William] Mallory says that he thinks 2 subsidies and 4 fifteens is enough and as much as the country is able to do.
Sir E[dward] Coke. That ultimus finis is to give the King satisfaction, and then that we give a reason to the country for what we give. He says that the King has said in his answer that his intents are to have a war, and therefore we are to consider of what is to be done; and the King says that we must provide for Ireland, to fortify our own coasts and ports, and assist the Low Countrymen. These reasons are to satisfy the country why we give subsidies. He would say to the King that we desire his Majesty for the present to accept of £300,000, which we think the country can bear, and this 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens will amount unto, and this is as much as the present occasion does require and we will perform our declaration as occasion shall be offered.
Sir Robert Phelips. That the weightiness of this cause has distracted him. That his heart goes to have both treaties dissolved, for until that be done [f. 98] he shall see this done. When we have resolved on a breach, he believes we shall see a torn estate, torn with the oppressions of some great persons which he shall in its due time speak to.
He would have us consider both of what is now presently occasioned and what may satisfy for the future, but he would not have what we give should come to be touched by those honourable fingers that disposes of the money in the Exchequer. That in the giving of this present supply, he relies most on the most excellent Prince's word and his princely engagements and honour in this business. He says that 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens come to £60,000 more than £300,000. He would go with the highest in giving on this occasion that there may be no blame laid on us if the opportunity and occasion offered but on those that possess his Majesty's ears with feigned suggestions. He would give 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens with those restrictions and conditions mentioned, and in pursuit of our declaration and in a fuller declaration of our intentions that when we meet again (for which he would, as in E. 3['s] time, a clause that we should meet again) that then [f. 98v] we will as occasion shall be offered, for the King makes his demand for a war and as if he meant to have a war, and we will, as occasion is offered, do what shall become good subjects when we meet again.
Sir E[dward] Cecil says he would have £3,000,000 [sic] and not 3 subsidies, 3 fifteens.
Sir George Calvert says that the King, if these treaties break as we desire, the King will and must enter into a war, and he would have us remember, as the Prince says that we must consider, how we have irritated those who will be and he thinks are our enemies. He would have us give 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens and tell his Majesty that we will not stay there but pursue our declaration for more as occasion shall be offered.
Sir Peter Heyman would have us give as much as is propounded with those conditions and restrictions that are limited, but he would not have us drawn on ourselves the cause of giving, but that the King should first declare his meaning in saying he is not sensible of the insincerity of the Spaniard.
Sir D[udley] Digges would have the ports drawn in to give because that a portsman is so cautious.
[f. 101] Sir Peter Heyman says he did not say anything that might abate a penny of the sum that was intended to be given, for he had been an apprentice at the war and knows better what belongs to the charge of it than he that never was at the war. He spoke only out of a desire that if the country should lay a blame on our persons, we might show them some good reason of the cause of our giving.
Mr. Treasurer is glad to see that we are all so forward to assist for the defence of our King and kingdom and the business now occasioned. He likes of 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens and a declaration that we will stand to our declaration.
Mr. [William] Nyell would that we give 3 su[bsidies] and 3 fifteens and that we should give it with alacrity. He thinks that the Spaniard is afraid to have a war, and that this gift of ours will cause the Palatinate to be surrendered without a blow given.
Sir Francis Seymour. He agrees to 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens, and is glad to see the House so well affected to the King and kingdom; and that the papists might give double subsidies and double fifteens, for that he thinks that would give the country more satisfaction both for this gift and for that they have already given.
[f. 101v] Sir John Savile. That he would have had us first consider of a defensive war and then of an offensive war. He would have us set down particularly that we give thus much for Ireland, thus much for the Low Countries, thus much for the navy, thus much for the fortifying of the ports. He would not have us have given less, but would have us set down a proportion for what we give. His masters of the gown ran very high in giving but they counted without their hosts, and so he thinks we have done, and that we must both reckon again. He would have a great care to be taken how this money shall be disposed.
Sir E[dward] Coke. That we have the word of a king that ourselves, a committee, shall have the disposing of the money. He would have us humbly petition that a pardon (especially for licences of alienations) and other good bills should also pass at this first sessions [sic], the better to enable the subjects to give.
Sir John Savile would have the King grant to us, for our better enabling, the forfeitures of papists, which amounts to about [£]8[,000] or £9,000. And also that the pretermitted customs might be taken away.
[f. 102] Sir William Herbert would not have anything mixed with this supply of 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens, for we give this sum not to the King but the kingdom; and when we give towards the King's necessities, then to petition for those things that the gentleman [who] spoke last desired.
Sir Thomas Jermyn says that it is in a general notion understood wherefore we give this supply, and therefore would not have it mentioned that we give such a sum for such a business.
Mr. [Edward] Alford would have us consider what former Parliaments have done on as great occasions, and would have us before we conclude on anything until we have this cessation understood how our country is able to give.
Sir Robert Phelips would have a subcommittee to consider what the question shall be, for this sum is not to be given to the King but to committees to disburse the same as occasion shall be offered; and therefore there is a care to be had what the question shall be, for the question is to be such a one as has not been ever put in this House.
Mr. [John] Glanville says that he thinks this business is ripe for the question. The thing that we labour for is the King's declaration of the breach of both treaties, and he thinks the question must be for the giving of 3 subsidies, 3 fifteens to this business, and this is rather a depositing than a giving; and he [f. 102v] would not have any question put concerning a petition to have bills or a pardon to accompany our gift.
It is resolved by this committee that after his Majesty shall have been pleased to declare himself for the utter dissolution and discharge of the two treaties of the marriage and the Palatinate, the House, in pursuit of their advice given to his Majesty and towards support of the war which is likely to ensue, and more particularly for those 4 points proposed by his Majesty — namely, the defence of this realm, the securing of Ireland, the assistance of our neighbours the states of the United Provinces and other his Majesty's friends and allies, and the setting out of his Majesty's royal navy — there shall be granted for the present 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens to be levied in such time and manner as the House shall after appoint, and to be paid into the hands and expended by the direction of such committees or commissioners as shall hereafter be agreed upon in this present sessions [sic] of Parliament.
[f. 103] Sir William Beecher would have us set down a certain time when these subsidies and fifteens shall be paid.
Sir Robert Phelips would have them paid within a year.
Sir John Savile says these 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens cannot be paid within a year.
A select committee shall consider of the time when the subsidies and fifteens shall be paid.
Mr. Speaker being in the chair, SIR EDWIN SANDYS makes report of what the committee has resolved on.
The House does, with an unanime consent, resolve and order the proportion of the gift of 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens in the same words as the committee did resolve up[on].
It is also ordered that a select committee of this House forthwith shall compose, digest and frame a fit and dutiful answer to his Majesty's demands of 6 subsidies and 12 fifteens and then shall present the same to this House.
It is ordered that Sir Robert Cotton and Mr. [John] Selden shall seek forth precedents to show how moneys have been kept and expended by committees named in Parliament.
MR. [JOHN] GLANVILLE says that we have given the subsidies and fifteens for the business of one year and we contradict ourselves if we [f. 103v] do give the money to be paid in a longer time than within the compass of a year. The people will not stand on the sums nor the time of payment of them if they like the cause, and there was never a better and more welcome cause that could be brought into the country than that of the breach of the two treaties. He would have it paid within the compass of a year, and the first payment to be in the end of May, the next 4 months after, and four months the last payment. We have given cheerfully, let us not mar our gift with the length of time, and so fail of the end we give it for.
SIR EDWIN SANDYS would have the first payment in April next and 6 months after the next, and the 3rd payment in April come 12 months.
MR. [JOHN] PYM would have us now conclude of the payment of the subsidies and fifteens within a year without resolving of any particular time.
SIR ROBERT PHELIPS would have us conclude that it shall be paid within the compass of a year without resolving of the particular times, which will be fitter to be considered of at a committee after the King has declared the breach of both treaties.
SIR WILLIAM BULSTRODE says that we cannot contract with the King of Spain that he shall [f. 104] not invade or annoy us until after a year. This business concerns the whole kingdom and the safety of it, which may be lost before the money shall be paid for the defence of it. He would have it paid within the compass of a year.
SIR ARTHUR INGRAM would have us agree to pay this money within a year after the King has declared himself to break both treaties.
It is ordered, by question, without anyone contradicting voice, that the 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens shall be paid within a year after the King has declared himself for the breach of both treaties.
VII. DIARY OF SIR WILLIAM SPRING, HOUGHTON LIBRARY, HARVARD UNIVERSITY, MS ENG. 980
Saturday, the 20th of March
An act for the cutting of the river of [blank] to make it navigable from the Thames [sic] to Oxford. Second read.
An act for naturalizing Jacques de Best.
The bill of usury being committed was now offered to be reported, but in regard of other occasions it was put off until Monday.
SIR EDWIN SANDYS moves that the cause now to be handled may be rightly stated that the proceeding in it may be the more orderly, for that in a business of great consequence and difficulty, this is the happiest way to bring it to perfection. In the nature of this business, there be two measures to be observed, the one of honour, the other of necessity. The first requires a charge, the second a moderation or limitation of that charge. There be 5 ways to order or expedite this business, etc. etc.
The work of this day is principally to be in a just and due consideration of the work of this year, and the work of this year consists principally in 5 parts, which were well noted by an honourable person near the chair yesterday. The charge of these must be proportioned, etc. A little too much loses somewhat, a little too little loses all; yet the means to raise this charge must be carefully regarded, as the King himself has also limited. There must be also a good assurance of a good and profitable employment of the means raised. This consideration of the execution or employment would be first handled. Primus intentione, postremus executione. There must be care had of a due satisfaction of the King's demands and also that the commonwealth be not burdened, etc., etc.
Here the Speaker was put out of the chair because the House would sit as a committee [of the whole]. Sir Edwin Sandys had the chair at the committee.
[p. 141] SIR ROBERT KILLIGREW moved that this business might be handled according to the order that was lastly spoken of, and to those 5 points:
- First, the work.
- 2. The charge of it.
- 3. The means for it, and the way to levy it.
- Fourthly, the caution of the bestowing it.
- 5th, the satisfaction to the King.
Mr. [Christopher] Brooke thinks that work which is (as he takes it) the war is not properly to be handled in this place; it is fitter for the King's cabinet and Council. That it is no policy to tell here what shall be done this year. That it will be only fit in this place to treat of the matter of supply. For the other, it may well be said to us quis constituit vos judices. Let not us put our sickle too far into the King's corn, and therefore moves to have that part left and the last of the five to be first handled.
Sir Thomas Hoby is of the same mind also, because the King does not precisely demand six subsidies and 12 fifteens. He says that he only thinks less will not serve, and for that the King does not strictly tie us to subsidies but by some course equivalent, and to this kind of the King's demand must we frame our answer, or else we err. He wishes that the King may be answered that if it please him to declare himself as he has promised, that then this House will be ready to bear the charge of that service, with limitation by him allowed.
Mr. [John] Coke. If we shall make an answer to the last before we have considered the first, it will prove but a lame answer. That the work, which is the first thing considerable, is not to be understood where the war shall be or what it shall be; this must proceed from the King, but he thinks the King in his speech looks farther. He propounds the breach of the treaties, foresees a war will follow, and to provide for that is the work as appears by the particulars propounded by the King, whereof the 3 first have no dependency with the war of the Palatinate and the last but a little, but the general aim and the necessity is apparent to be a war with Spain.
[p. 142] Mr. [Charles] Price would have the last proposition first handled, and that we may not stick at subsidies to make good our promises to the King formerly made of assistance with our persons and abilities, etc.
Sir Thomas Jermyn thinks that to proportion our gift as to the recovery of the Palatinate (that is) to be bestowed there in loco is not a fitting thing, for that in the recovery of provinces lost there are so many difficulties as there is little hope, and therefore he thinks the King has no intention to employ it directly to that end, etc.
Sir George Chudleigh thinks the work cannot be certain for that sudden stratagems in war will so alter the occasion, as it must also change the resolution of proceeding, as appeared in 88. That there may be some better aim had at the matter of defence, which yet also is alterable upon sudden and unexpected accidents. Therefore, wishes that we may proportion ourselves rather to the last of the 2 measures, that of necessity, rather than that of honour.
The Recorder, Sir Heneage Finch, supposes the best course we can take is to frame a satisfactory answer to the King according to the limitations of his demand. We find not that war is absolutely determined, only it is inferred as possible, which is to be provided for as far as is fitting for to make us secure against it. The King requires not us to dispute de modo, whether in the Palatinate or other where, nay, not any whit propounding the immediate attempting the recovery of the Palatinate, because he only hopes (as he says) to see a possibility of the recovery of that land again, as Moses did (but to see) the land of promise, etc. If then the work cannot be seen, how can we proportion the charge? Let it be then our work now to draw on the King to declare the breach of the treaties, and then the work of this year will follow. Let us also provide for the part of our work which is seen, which is for our security, and for the other the King may be thus satisfied, and that [p. 143] by the way which the King himself has set us in. That we beseech him that as in general terms we have promised to give him assistance, and that more fully and largely than could be expressed in particulars, so that for the present, since his demand of 6 subsidies and 12 fifteens cannot be levied in a short time, as a taste and pledge of our duties and affections he will accept of 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens, and that as war shall prove hotter or colder, when we meet again at Michaelmas and in the spring, we will make further supply.
Sir Henry Mildmay. We have 2 chief points considerable: the first, the work for which we are to prepare; the second, the workman whom we are to satisfy. The work consists, according to the rule of the workman, in outworks and inworks, and either of them are 3 in number. The 3 outworks are, first, the aid of the states of the Low Countries; second, the uniting the disbanded princes of Germany, which are the bulwarks of our religion abroad; the third, the aiding and assisting them to encounter their and our adversaries.
The 3 inworks are: first, to lock up our back door safe in Ireland, and that must be done with means from hence; secondly, to furnish and strengthen our navy, which are the active engines by which the work of our desires is to be affected; thirdly, a good and fitting provision of powder, shot, arms, etc. And in the effectual and careful dispatch and furnishing of this work, at least in providing the means to have it effectually done, we shall satisfy and content the workman, which he thinks may be done by the grant of 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens (and this he speaks not as a courtier or in regard of his dependency, but as a lover of his country); and to this he desires the papists may be drawn in, to contribute largely, especially since they are to us but as ivy to the oak which embrace and ruin us.
Here the Speaker went into the chair a while to send up some bills to the Lords that were ready engrossed.
And an act was sent [sic] concerning the Prince and Sir Lewis Watson for exchange of land.
And [an act was read] to enable justices of the peace to give restitution in some cases.
[p. 144] A message came to the House from the Lords, that whereas they had from both Houses sent unto the King to desire he would be pleased to give them leave to justify the Duke of Buckingham concerning the complaint made against him for offering wrong to the King of Spain in his relation late made to both Houses, that now the King had given notice to the Lords that he would be pleased tomorrow at Whitehall to hear them, and that the Lords had appointed the Lord Keeper to be the deliverer of that justification to the King. Our House accepted it, etc.
Here the Speaker went out of the chair again and the House sat as a committee [of the whole] and Sir Edwin Sandys took the chair again.
Sir Edwin Sandys. The King has designed the particulars of this year's work, not in what place we must have war and where to fight, but to relieve the Low Countries, to strengthen our state and friends, and this is not particularly to determine a war, but to be prepared for it.
Mr. [William] Mallory moves that care may be had to cut our coats to our cloth and consider well the present state of the countries. He thinks 2 subsidies and 4 fifteens are sufficient for the present and desires that the advice we have given the King may be inserted into the book of subsidies, that so some cause may appear to the country why their money is given.
Sir Edward Coke hopes the King and the country both may be satisfied, the one in the gift, the other in the reasons of it. He believes the King does certainly intend a war but will not be prescribed to the particulars of it. Where there is commune periculum there must be commune auxilium; yet if the King will make a war and require no aid, he may do it where he will; but if he demand aid, he must be advised. There be 2 points in the King's last speech and 2 in the Prince's that do assure us that a war is truly intended, etc. He thinks that the King's 4 propositions [p. 145] for the securing of Ireland, the aid of the Low Countries, the fortifying the ports and furnishing the navy, will give good satisfaction to the country why we did give, seeing that in these particulars consists the honour, safety and comfort of our nation, and the defence and maintenance of our religion. By these good beginnings he yet hopes to live until he see[s] the King of Spain lose his Indies.
In the proportioning the gift, there must good caution be had, as the King has graciously advised, that the people be not burdened too much. He thinks that for the sound sake, it is best to say we give £300,000, which will fall near the proportion of 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens, and that it may be said that this the subject can and will give now, and will do more hereafter, promising further aid as just occasion shall be offered.
Sir Robert Phelips. These treaties have hanged [sic] over us like ominous comets and until they be dissolved we cannot stand right abroad nor at home; and after we have provided for the dissolution of these, we shall find a torn commonwealth, which must necessarily be carefully regarded. In these two parts, we must look to satisfy the King, our countries and our own consciences. And howsoever the King's limitations of the disposing of this money now to be levied be fair, and that the money shall not be touched with any of the honourable fingers that meddle with the Exchequer rents, yet he observes that such limitations have ever been used in times of no validity or worth. The Prince's engagement and his virtues are our greatest hopes and assurance.
He supposes that the sufficient means for this year's work may be guessed at, that 3 subsidies, 3 fifteens do come to 18 score £1,000, which is more by [£]60,000 than [£]300,000, and that to give the subsidies will show that our hearts and tongues agree; it will free us from the danger of any ill imputation if it fallout otherwise than we expect. And if there be any that will do [p. 146] ill offices about the King, to cross these our desires, to let them know that they shall not want punishment here and a full reward hereafter, etc. The King may be satisfied in the sum of [£]300,000, or in 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens with these limitations and additions, if he go to war, and that when we meet again not only this but more shall be given as occasion shall require, and for this there is a precedent of a Parliament in Edward the 2nd['s] time. This will give reputation to the action and satisfy the King and country, only let the engagement be conditional, etc.
Sir Edward Cecil. War is not like building or fortification to be measured by the foot or yard, and to discover too much the poverty of the kingdom is a great discouragement to those that shall undertake a war. To give too much will hurt but little, to give too little mars all. He thinks that the voice of giving [£]300,000 is of more validity than to speak of subsidies by name, etc.
Sir George Calvert. The necessity of the present occasion requires proceeding. There must be a war both defensive and offensive. In the Prince's speech, we might observe that he said we had irritated them whom we took to be our enemies, and there is no doubt but we have, etc. That the 4 points for defence which had been often spoken (Ireland, the Low Countries, the navy and the ports) must presently be looked unto, and yet the King has one point of defence more to regard which is not fit here to be spoken of. He advises that regard may be had unto the present necessities and the subject's ease, and that 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens may be granted and that the King may be assured that in pursuit of our advice we will never fail him.
Sir Peter Heyman thinks that if the King had declared without us, we should have declared more freely, and wishes so to provide for the security of the country as that the country may not be offended at us for it.
[p. 147] Sir Dudley Digges thinks that the fittest way for to have the treaties broken is to be by our request. That they that do now send us here would themselves give more if they were here, and that the satisfaction of the country is a motive rather to increase the gift. The princes of Germany and the King of Denmark must be drawn into assistance and then Denmark will look to the payment of his debts from the King. And therefore wishes that the port towns, which formerly have been exempt from subsidies, may now be drawn in to contribute to this business, etc.
To this, Sir Peter Heyman makes answer in excuse of the [Cinque] Ports (it being allowable, by the orders of the House, that any man may reply or speak to one matter as often as he will at a committee, which when the House sits as an House, they may not) and that the time to consider of this will be better hereafter, etc.
Sir Thomas Edmondes, Treasurer of the Household. He is glad that the particulars of the war are declined. That as now we are come to the point what to give, so it may be done with alacrity, and therefore moves to put it to the question for 3 subsidies, 3 fifteens.
Mr. [Nathaniel] Tomkins consents with the subsidies and fifteens, and desires that for satisfaction of the country, that the King would please to pass the bills of grace and that a free and general pardon and a large one may be granted that the grievances may be redressed and especially that of concealed titles.
Mr. [William] Coryton allows the subsidy but moves that the laws may first pass and the act of subsidies last, etc.
Mr. [William] Nyell allows the gift and that it be done with alacrity, and he doubts not but the very voice of it will end the war. That the King of Spain has tried us so as that he knows us, and we him to be wise but cowardly; that he dares not war with us; that the Palatinate will be surrendered soon, or else we will not leave him a ship in a year. It is the day that is wished for.
[p. 148] Sir Francis Seymour does also assent to the subsidy but moves that the papists which have gathered well, and are at no charge, may be made to pay double, which will well increase the subsidy and content the people.
Sir George More. There is a time for all things, but no time to lose time. That there needs no further labour or doubt upon this point whether it will content the people or not; all the well affected people will undoubtedly rejoice, and this resolution of the King's will wipe away all the tears of the afflicted parts of Christendom, etc.
The Solicitor moves that the sum may be determined and that a committee may be appointed to set it down for the manner and circumstances of it.
Sir John Savile foresees an hazard to run a contrary course to others, but now since we have declined the first part that should have been considered first — for what we were to give — and are leaped over to this — what to give — he wishes that the gift may be restrained to the particular ends for which it was given, for Holland, Ireland, the ports and the navy, and to set down that it is thus to be employed. He had formerly wished that they might make the King a good sword. Now it is said the King only best knows how to use his sword. But for the money, he mislikes not the sum, he only thinks that we reckon without our host, and it will be too little, etc.
The King has heretofore said that we are the mirror through which the subjects may see him, but surely we are the mirror through which he may see his subjects. To say to the people that our own stewards or committees shall have the money and see it expended, that is no security nor satisfaction to them, only the satisfaction will be in the right ordering and employment of the money, and wishes that may be chiefly regarded, etc.
[p. 149] Sir Edward Coke thinks the King's speech will give sufficient satisfaction for the keeping and employment of the money. For the particular, to say what shall serve to this or that, is not possible. He moves to accompany the offer of the subsidies with a petition for a general pardon, such as honest men may have benefit by; for licenses of alienation, etc.; and that the bills of grace may pass, and that abuses may be taken away and the commonwealth rectified; and that this be done by way of request or petition, not by contracting, as grant us this, we pray, and we will grant you these subsidies.
Sir John Savile moves that to the petition may be added that the benefit of forfeitures and penalty of recusants may be taken to help this, and that pretermitted customs, which undoes the kingdom by hindering of the trade of clothing, may be taken away, and this will both enable and encourage the people to give.
Sir William Herbert moves that the gift may be given to the war and not to the King, and would have no petition offered before we give somewhat.
Sir Thomas Jermyn thinks that the employment of the money is necessarily implied in that the ends for which it is now given is expressed. He thinks it not so fit to petition the King now because he would not have the King's free grace of a general pardon anticipated by a petition, etc.
Sir Walter Earle allows of the proportion of the gift and wishes to put it to the question for 3 subsidies, 3 fifteens, with such cautions as have been propounded by the King, and shall be further thought on by a committee of the House.
Mr. [Edward] Alford says that, heretofore, when subsidies have been demanded, the Parliament has answered they would first acquaint the countries with it, but he thinks not that course good now, yet advises to take heed how far we engage ourselves by promise of further addition, and that we must also take heed that in this place subjects do not determine of a war, which is proper to sovereigns only to do.
[p. 150] Sir Robert Phelips moves that a subcommittee may be appointed to advise how to pen down our offer and to present it to the King, both for the present performance and the remanent promises.
Mr. [John] Glanville thinks that if it fall out that after all this the declaration from the King be not gained, we have given too little, and that is the cause of it. We need not so much to stick at the gift, because it is not money given to the King, but only deposited to certain purposes and to be expended according to order and limitations. He thinks it not fit to make any petition to the King now, seeing we give him nothing, and to complain of 2 or 3 grievances were to disclaim the rest, of which there be many, especially since we have with this gift promised more, and not by this disclaimed giving hereafter. He moves that the question may pass for 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens with cautions and limitations for the levying and expending.
Mr. [Edward] Alford adds to the question that this may be done when the King has declared.
Sir Guy Palmes moves for longer time of deliberation for that. Time never brought forth repentance.
Sir Edwin Sandys understands the meaning of the House to be that these things should pass without a gainsaying voice, and therefore would have the parts of the question rightly agreed upon that there may be no difference for the substance of it, as for the sum that is to be given, to what end it shall be given and in what time, and that these may be inserted in the question with the limitations of keeping and expending also.
The question is put in this manner following, Sir Edwin Sandys having first with the consent of the whole committee, and their help, penned it into this form.
[p. 151] As many as think fit that after his Majesty shall have been pleased to declare himself for the utter dissolution and discharge of the 2 treaties of the marriage and of the Palatinate, that we in pursuit of the advice given by both Houses to his Majesty and towards the support of the war likely to ensue, and more particularly for the 4 points proposed by his Majesty — namely the securing of Ireland, the defence of this realm, the assistance of his Majesty's neighbours and allies of the United Provinces and others his Majesty's friends and allies, and the setting out the royal navy — should give 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens to be levied at such times and in such manner as they shall hereafter appoint and to be paid at such times and into such hands and expended by such directions of such committees as shall hereafter be agreed on in this present session of Parliament, say yea, and such as will not, say no.
Before this question was put, Mr. [John] Glanville excepts against the penning of it as an innovation not formerly seen; thinks it dangerous, for that while we speak we are masters of our own sense, and in writings we are not so, that to insist thus upon particular points is to exclude others that are as considerable, etc.
The Recorder says that the words of the question embrace the general as well as these particulars.
Sir Robert Phelips. [Blank]
The question is, as above, resolved by the whole voice of the committee, and a special committee appointed to frame a fair answer to the King's demands and to acquaint him with this our resolution.
Mr. [Edward] Alford moves that Sir Robert Cotton and Mr. [John] Selden may be commanded to look for precedents how contributions in this kind have been appointed to be kept, and whether kings have made declarations upon like advice, to which the Recorder agrees not: thinks it not fit the King should declare to the world before he has declared to us.
SIR EDWIN SANDYS reports the committee to the Speaker, now in the chair, he to the House, and all points are agreed on by one consent.
VIII. DIARY OF SIR THOMAS HOLLAND, BODL., TANNER MS 932
19 [sic] Martii, Saturday
Second read. Put to the engrossing. An act for the naturalizing Jacques de Best.
Second read. Committed. An act for making the river of Thames navigable from Burcot in Oxfordshire to the city of Oxford.
[DR. BARNABY] GOOCH. Report. The bill against usury.
It is ordered that the debate of the bill of usury shall be on Monday morning.
[SIR EDWIN] SANDYS desires to state the cause, 5 things, 2 measures. Two measures, one of honour, other of necessity. The first work is to consider what the work of this year, how to resist the great monarch for renting the Palatinate away. Third, propositions formerly, and a 4th, how it shall be disposed. A 5t[h], what answer we shall give to his Majesty's demand, which is the state of this business.
[SIR ROBERT] KILLIGREW moves that the first proposition of 5 may be first debated. The work, charge, the means of levying the charge, the caution. [Blank] a satisfactory answer.
A committee appointed for debate of the whole House. The Speaker sits aside, Sir Edwin Sandys put in the chair.
[Mr. Christopher] Brooke. That the work for this year is not proper to be debated because we have no power given by his Majesty; neither the work for this year is not to be known to 400 persons what is fit.
[Sir Thomas] Hoby. His Majesty does not precisely set down to us 6 subsidies, 12 fifteens, but says he thinks that 6 subsidies, 12 fifteens should be given. [f. 66] That if/
[Mr. John] Coke. To make answer to the King before we have made debate of the rest will produce a lame answer. Therefore, not there to begin. [Blank] 2 treaties, of marriage and Palatinate. That which will ensue the breach is a war and not only of the Palatinate but with Spain, not definitively with Spain but that which shall ensue the breach.
[Mr. Charles] Price. That the giving of 6 subsidies and 12 fifteens will advance with the repute and that, being in years paid, will be no great burden.
[Sir Thomas] Jermyn. He thinks it impossible in loco the Palatinate should be recovered, yet in respect it is the King's children's inheritance and therefore fit to be left to the King's intention, yet it is not probable that the King intends the war in loco.
[Sir George] Chudleigh. There is an hour of wisdom. What we think fit the country should be charged with. Something may be spoken for the defence of the kingdom. His motion is that we may go to the necessity of the country.
Recorder. We must give a satisfactory answer to the King for his demand, which is not that we shall give presently the money, neither that the war shall follow, but if war shall follow, then what our assistance shall be for maintenance. [f. 66v] Upon the King's declaration, we must look to secure us by the navy, Ireland, the Low Countries. Therefore, we must thus pitch upon an answer to the King's speech which he has chalked out. We are to desire his Majesty to hasten his declaration, and as a pledge of what we will do at our other meetings we will now pass 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens, and make good what formerly we have offered as occasion shall be.
[Sir Henry] Mildmay. The outworks and inworks. The first, Low Countries, the reuniting the princes disbanded, the confederate princes. The 3 inworks: Ireland; second, the navy; 3rd, the munition for our ports. According to this we shall please the workman. 3 subsidies with 2 fifteens to every subsidy. To this the papists may be drawn in, who are as the ivy to the oak and will, as the ivy, eat out the heart of the oak.
11 bills sent up by Mr. Secretary [Calvert].
Second read. Put to the engrossing. An act to enable justices of peace to give restitution in certain case.
First read. An act for confirmation of exchange [of] lands between the Prince and Sir Lewis Watson, knight and baronet.
SECRETARY CALVERT. That the Lord Keeper desired that the House might be acquainted that the Prince moved the King to appoint a day for his Majesty's clearing the Duke of Buckingham and his Majesty has appointed tomorrow [f. 67] in the afternoon, both Houses to be before the King and the Lord Keeper to be the speaker.
[Committee of the Whole House]
[Sir Edwin] Sandys. [Blank]
[Mr. William] Mallory. If we should give more than shall be pleasing to the country, we may be endangered thereby. Two subsidies and 4 fifteens to be given is as much as we can bear.
[Sir Edward] Coke. To give the King satisfaction and the country a reason is fitting. To deal particularly for a war we have authority by the King's direction. His Majesty's intention of war is showed 4 wa[y]s: the first, by example out of the gospel, then the great business, then the Prince's declaration in 2 places; for these 4 causes is a good answer to our countries. To conquer the Palatinate, we must conquer all the land between this and the Palatinate but the Low Countries, is the direct way. For satisfaction of the King, our report must be to him that this we now give is without burden to his subjects. £300,000 is a sufficient proportion. 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens is much about that sum. This is that we can well give now, and after we will pursue what we have declared upon occasion.
[Sir Robert] Phelips. First, for the present year and the time to come. Our Prince's interest induces, his honour being at the stake, his word, and engagement brings a confidence. [f. 67v] 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens comes to £360,000, £60,000. He agrees with those who will give 3 subsidies, 3 fifteens, with those restrictions the House shall think fit. For his Majesty's satisfaction, it had a reference if there were occasion, then for a war; here is none yet. In pursuit of our advice that when we come again, which clause he would have set down pertinent, when we shall view the engagement which our advice has brought upon him, we will further assist. This will give satisfaction.
[Sir Edward] Cecil. What we will give, and to sweeten the message to the King, [£]300,000 is better than 3 subsidies in reputation, and we will/
[Secretary] Calvert. The King's entrance into a war there is no question of, and that both defensive and offensive. The first is principally to be considered. The offensive is to be without question. 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens is a necessary proposition for the present and/
[Sir Peter] Heyman. That we may not be the absolute drawers on, who are for our country, but that his Majesty may declare his sensibility that it be not laid upon us. But 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens he freely assented to it.
[f. 68] [Sir Dudley] Digges. That the Cinque Ports be taken into consideration that they be not left out to decline the sum.
Treasurer. The proposition for 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens may be brought to a question.
[Mr. Nathaniel] Tomkins. If there happens a war, we will not be poor but will cut off our superfluities to give aid. One consideration for our country is necessary, to be suitors to his Majesty those bills of grace may pass with this and a free pardon without such restrictions as formerly have been, which will cause our country to advance further as there shall be cause.
[Mr. William] Coryton. He grants 3 subsidies, 3 fifteens. That the session be hastened, the grievances reformed and the pardon extended without former restrictions.
[Mr. William] Nyell consents to the gift and for the alacrity, for when the world shall see that there will be an end of war. They are the wisest of all other nations when he see[s] he is prevented. The Hollanders will not leave him a ship besides his navy. Therefore, for the manner, he desires consideration may be had.
[f. 68v] [Sir] Francis Seymour. 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens he consents to, but he will desire may be added the double subsidy of the recusants, which will give some satisfaction to our countries.
[Sir George] More. That our gift may be drawn to a question and then we debate of the way.
Solicitor. That we go to the question, which is ripe, and after to name a committee for the manner.
[Sir John] Savile. There may be a mystery. If we had gone into particular[s] and examined the charge, then we might more properly have set it down. It is fit to know how this shall be disposed of, for giving it in this sort we are unsatisfied what will serve.
[Sir Edward] Coke. 4 things: defensive, the securing Ireland, the navy and our coasts, the Low Countries. This that is to be given is to be put into treasurers' hands of our own and therefore we shall have an account of it. This being given, we accompany it with an humble petition for a pardon for good men as well as thieves, and inserted the licences of alienations not in record. The bill of informers, certioraries and other good bills by way of petition.
[f. 69] [Sir John] Savile. That his Majesty would give unto us that which is due from the recusants, which is a matter of £8,000, and that the pretermitted customs may be taken off.
[Sir] William Herbert desires that they may be distinguished and after put by itself and not mingled with our free/
[Sir Thomas] Jermyn. For recusants, it is not seasonable nor a [sic] for a Parliament [sic] to prevent his Majesty's grace.
[Sir Walter] Earle. The sum is well proportioned, therefore, the question is seasonable for the giving with those cautions and restrictions according to the/
[Mr. Edward] Alford. That our next meeting, we may look into those things that make us unable and not to involve ourselves in further particular[s] than have been debated.
[Sir Robert] Phelips. That which is given is not given for the King's pleasure but for the war; therefore, to give the King satisfaction, to nominate a subcommittee to frame that satisfaction before a question.
[Mr. Christopher] Wandesford. That we go to the first question and afterward a subcommittee for to give the King satisfaction.
Comptroller. To go to the question for a [sic] the gift.
[f. 69v] [Mr. John] Glanville. 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens are for a war. This is ripe for a question. The second is not fitting, to petition for a few things improper. The proposition was for 6. We have not denied nothing. The manner of all is to be by a subcommittee.
[Sir] Guy Palmes moves that a committee may take all into consideration.
[Sir Edwin] Sandys. The gift is for the war with a caution after his Majesty's declaration. That the former 4 points be inserted in the preamble, and therefore to be in the question. The certain limitations for treasurers and expending the money.
Question: as many as think fit that after his Majesty shall have been pleased to declare himself for the utter dissolution and discharge of the two treaties for the marriage and the Palatinate, that in pursuit of the Houses' advice given to fortify his Majesty and towards the support of the war which is likely to ensue, and more particularly for those 4 points proposed by his Majesty — namely, the defence of the realm, the securing of Ireland, the assistance of our neighbours, the United Provinces, and other his Majesty's friends and allies, the [blank] and setting out his Majesty's royal navy — there shall be granted [f. 70] for the present 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens to be levied at such times and in such manner as the House shall be pleased to appoint and to be paid into the hands of committees or commissioners as hereafter shall be agreed upon in the present session of Parliament.
It is thought fit that Sir Robert Cotton and Mr. [John] Selden shall bring in such precedents as shall conduce to this business, upon Monday.
Question, the committee. As many as think fit to name a selected committee to frame and prepare/
It is ordered that the committee shall meet in the afternoon in the Court of Wards.
It is ordered, by question, that the 3 subsidies and fifteens be paid within the compass of a year after the King has declared himself.
IX. DIARY OF JOHN PYM, NORTHAMPTONSHIRE RECORD OFFICE, FH/N/C/0050
200 Martii 1623
An act for making the Thames navigable to Oxford.
An act for the naturalization of/
[f. 35] DR. [BARNABY] GOOCH reported the bill of usury. The committee thought good to strike out that conclusion in the preamble that all usury was against the law of God, leaving it to be determined by divines. They had agreed to make the law a probationer for 7 years, upon the rate of 8 per £100, and the statute to be in force from November next.
It being doubted that some dispute would arise upon this which might hinder the great business, it was moved that the debate might be adjourned until some other time. Against which, MR. [JOHN] GLANVILLE alleged that it was a new way to adjourn the debate upon a report. The right way is to put it to the question and if it be disputed, to recommit it and to give occasion of a recommitment. He made this objection, that all trade was regulated by 10 per [£]100 as by a common standard, and this would discompose the whole course of men's dealing.
SIR EDWIN SANDYS. That would endeavour to state the cause, for if [sic] a great happiness in a question of this importance to find the true measure, by which it is to be decided. There are in nature 2 measures, the one an honourable measure, the other a measure of necessity. The honourable measure in this business is that the work should be the rule of the expense; but necessity prescribes another measure, which is the ability of the people. The branches are 5, whereof 3 have been well delivered.
- 1. What the work of this year must be.
- 2. What charge will defray it; a little too much loses somewhat, a little too little loses all.
- 3. How the charge may be levied.
- 4. By what hands it shall be disposed.
- 5. Which is the first in execution but must be last in debate, what answer shall be made to his Majesty's demands of 6 subsidies and 12 fifteens, which as a flower must rise out of those roots.
The Speaker left the chair and the House was turned into a committee.
In the committee [of the Whole House]
Some time was spent concerning the order of these questions, some of the pertinency. It was objected that war and peace were not referred to us. His Majesty demands assistance for the Palatinate, and we shall answer him with provision for Ireland and the Low Countries.
This Mr. [John] Coke cleared. War is the consequence of our advice, and therefore we must be provided to weaken our enemy and secure ourselves. All the points in question concerning Ireland, the Low Countries, the forces, have a relation to the Palatinate in one of these 2 respects.
Touching the first question, Sir George Chudleigh interposed this caution, to consider only that which was extraordinary [f. 35v] because the King was to bear all charges pertaining to the ordinary defence of the kingdom.
Mr. [Charles] Price and Mr. Recorder. To debate only of the last, that is, our answer to the King. The first consented to the whole demand, the other to 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens.
Sir Henry Mildmay added 3 other fifteens.
The debate was interrupted by the Speaker coming to the chair.
In the House
Mr. Secretary [Calvert] was sent with divers bills to the Lords. In his absence were read:
An act to enable justices of peace to restore possessions in case of copyholds and lease for years.
An act for confirmation of an exchange of lands between the Prince and Sir Lewis Watson.
At his return, MR. SECRETARY [CALVERT] reported that the Lord Keeper told him he had moved the King for a time to clear my Lord of Buckingham, and the King had appointed tomorrow.
After which, the Speaker left the chair.
In the committee [of the Whole House]
Mr. [William] Mallory. To grant 2 subsidies and 2 fifteens and to insert our advice in the act.
Sir Edward Coke. 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens, and to continue our former resolution of assisting his Majesty further as occasion shall be offered.
Sir Robert Phelips. These treaties had long hung over our heads as a fatal comet, not only in respect of foreign danger but in respect of the good order of the commonwealth, which has been full of rents, injuries and oppressions by the proceedings of those in great place who, to secure themselves, have contributed too much towards those treaties. That they may be dissolved, there is a supply expected from us and a limitation presented to us, by which we may be secured of round dealing. That the money shall touch none of those honourable fingers who dispose of the King's revenue. By nature he was no doubtful man, yet that particular, though it somewhat moved him, did not captivate him. He had observed in story the fruit of such grace to be rendered nothing worth. That which confirmed him was the Prince's interest; his honour was at the stake, whose worth will appear more to our posterity than we can comprehend. His word is our [f. 36] surety, his judgement our hope.
Wherefore he did agree with those who did give the full and large proportion, which was last spoken of and which will come to £60,000 more than those preparations which are presently needful shall require. And if any man go about to advise his Majesty another way, I hope he shall not escape punishment in this world, I am sure not in the world to come. He concluded with a motion that according to a precedent Ed. 3, a clause might be inserted of the meeting of Parliament at a certain time when we will be ready not only to satisfy his Majesty's demand but a greater proportion according as the action shall require.
Sir Edward Cecil, Secretary Calvert, Sir Peter Heyman and others to the same proportion.
These motions were added by others, together with this declaration to petition for the passing of bills, for a large pardon, for ease of the subjects in the pretermitted customs, that papists might be double charged and penalties due from recusants to be granted to this work. But it was thought by others that our grant would savour too much of a bargain if we should mingle with it any matters of demand and that it was not good to entangle this business with any charge upon recusants and to prevent the King's grace by our petition, especially considering this gift was not to the King but to the commonwealth.
The question was appointed to be put for 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens for support of our advice and especially for those 4 uses — the defence of Ireland, assistance of the Low Countries, supplying the navy and the forces — to be received and disbursed by such committees as should be appointed in Parliament.
It was objected that the King of Spain might take just exception if the Low Countries were named, but that question was nevertheless passed in the committee and the Speaker called to the chair.
In the House
SIR EDWIN SANDYS made the report, and the same question was passed by the House.
Mr. [John] Selden and Sir Robert Cotton were appointed to search precedents in these points:
l. Whether the Commons alone or together with the Lords were to name the committees. 2. How far the Lords might be liable to account to the Commons.
After a little debate, it was agreed that all these subsidies and fifteens should be paid within a year after his Majesty's declaration.
[f. 36v] An act for confirmation of a decree in the Chancery for settling the customary tenants of the manor of Painswick in Gloucestershire by consent between the lord and tenants.
An act for explanation of the statute 3 and 4 Ed. 6 concerning buying and selling of butter and cheese.
X. DIARY OF SIR WALTER EARLE, BL, ADD. MS 18,597
Saturday, 20th of March
Jacques de Best, being to be naturalized, took the oaths in the House.
Bill for making the river of Thames navigable to Oxford.
Report from the committee of the bill concerning usury. The title altered and a part of the preamble, and the act made a probationer.
[f. 98v] The debate of it put off until Monday.
Bill to enable justices of peace to restore possession in some cases, second read.
SIR EDWIN SANDYS for the stating of the business before we enter into debate of it. In nature generally, there are 2 measures: 1. honourable; 2. necessary. Now concerning the particular branches, 5 in number:
- 1. What the work of this year is in this great action of the kingdom's defence and resistance of Spain:
- 1. The furnishing the kingdom.
- 2. Strengthening Ireland.
- 3. Assisting the Low Countries by a navy royal.
- 2. What the charge will be, not too much nor too little.
- 3. Where the money shall be levied, the means, more ways than one there must be to do it.
- 4. How the money shall be disposed when it is levied, the caution.
- 5. Which in execution must be the first, what answer we shall give to his Majesty's demand satisfactory to his Majesty and yet not further engage ourselves this year.
[Committee of the Whole House]
Mr. [Christopher] Brooke in doubt whether to meddle with the first in particular:
- 1. Peace and war are the King's prerogative.
- 2. Not good policy to speak of such particulars in so large an assembly.
We may make a conjecture perhaps.
Sir Thomas Hoby. Fit to handle the last branch first. [f. 99] I do not find that the King prescribes precisely 6 subsidies and 12 fifteens. He says the business will require so much. His Majesty tells us not what war the money shall be employed in.
Mr. [John] Coke. To make an answer to the King before we have debated the other will be a lame answer. The extent, not to enter into consideration of the expense this year, but what war it is that shall be entered into. Therefore, whether the King will conclude us within the war of the Palatinate, or to extend to a war with Spain.
Mr. Recorder's opinion to begin with that which is last proposed. Our advice was that the King would dissolve the treaties. The stay of his resolution is our not having yet given answer to the particulars proposed. No commission given to us to deliberate de modo belli. If we talk not of the work, then in vain to talk of the charge. The last includes all the rest.
Sir Henry Mildmay. Consider the work, the workman. The work, 3 outworks: the Low Countries, the princes of Germany, the Palatinate. The inworks: Ireland, the navy, the ports and munition.
Sir Edwin Sandys, being in the chair, recollected what had been objected against the method. Desired to proceed.
[f. 99v] Mr. [William] Mallory. 2 subsidies and 4 fifteens as much as may conveniently be raised.
Sir Edward Coke. Fit to give the King a satisfaction; second, to give a reason to the country. It is apparent that the King means to have a war. Touching going to particulars, if the King will ask an aid of the subject, then the subject may crave to know, etc. The King speaks of having a war in 4 several places of his speech. He spoke also particularly of Ireland, the navy, the ports, the Low Countries. These will satisfy the countries. If you will go to conquer the Palatinate by war, we must conquer all between this and that.
Sir Robert Phelips. Never so distressed as in this cause. 3 subsidies and three fifteens amount to more than £300,000, £360,000. I would give 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens, yet having a clause of meeting again. In E. 3['s] time, a clause inserted the states should meet again at such a time.
Secretary Calvert. We are already engaged. The King will enter into a war. Question whether defensive or offensive. Both. First, a defensive, Ireland, the navy; the offensive will be for the King, his crown, blood. A good proportion 3 subsidies and three fifteens; when this is resolved, to signify how far [f. 100] we have gone for the present, and how ready we will be hereafter.
Sir Dudley Digges. The Cinque Ports one thing to be thought on. The King of Denmark to be satisfied of his debt before he will be drawn in.
Sir Thomas Edmondes. Glad to see the first question declined. Let us make it appear that what we do, we do it with alacrity.
[f. 101v] Mr. [Edward] Alford's motion that Sir Robert Cotton and Mr. [John] Selden may search records for precedents how commissioners have been appointed.
A select committee to be appointed to consider of a satisfactory answer to his Majesty.
XI. JOURNAL OF SIR SIMONDS D'EWES, BL, HARL. MS 159
March 20, Saturday
An act for the naturalizing of Jacques de Best.
An act to make the Thames navigable from Burcot to Oxford.
Then went the Speaker out of the chair, who sitting by, they fell to the main business where they left the day before.
And first SIR EDWIN SANDYS began and stated the question [f. 87v] and propounded a double measure to proceed, by the one of honour, the other of necessity. By the first, we are to answer the King; by the 2nd we are to consider ourselves and the state of our country. He conceived there were 5 considerable branches in this day's business. First, to weigh what is the work of this year, what military provisions will be necessary for the securing of Ireland, manning out the navy, assisting the Low Countries and repairing of our fortresses at home. 2nd, what will be the charge to bear up all this, and here he put us in mind of one old saying: he that gives too much loses a little, but he that gives too little loses all. 3rd, how that charge may or will be raised, and whether there be no other way to do it but by subsidy. Fourth, how the moneys so raised shall be disposed of and through whose hands. Fifth, what answer is to be made to the King's present demands, which in execution must be the first, though it come last in debate and like a flower grow out of all those former roots, and doubted not but that we should be able to give his Majesty satisfaction.
SIR ROBERT KILLIGREW moved that these heads might be all spoken of in their order.
Mr. [Christopher] Brooke thinks we ought not to meddle with the first point at all because war and the managing thereof are the peculiars of princes. Besides, he held it not fit to declare in so open assembly, though we had power to do it, what our intentions were for this year, lest they might be discovered and prevented, but would rather have us make an answer to the King's demands.
[f. 88] Sir Thomas Hoby would have the order inverted and the last point to be first spoken of, and have us to answer the King that we will bear the charge whatever it be, so it may be confined to the cautions of the King's speech.
Others thought that answer would be lame and defective without debating the particulars. Others were not afraid to come to certainty of terms and give the King satisfaction in granting all the 6 subsidies, so there might be time to levy them, for that would honour the cause much. Others would not have us disgrace ourselves in giving too little nor dishonour the King in denying his demands. It is not fit for us to dispute the particulars of a war, but ought to provide mainly for our own defence. Spain treated in 88 and then came the cannon at the heel of the commission.
The Recorder. The King has not given us commission to treat de modo gerendi belli, ergo, it were good for us rather to frame such an answer as might hasten his declaration. He has told us he would not have us overburden the people and gives us an intimation of another sessions [sic], ergo, he has chalked out our way what we ought to do. Let us beseech him to hasten his declaration and we shall really make good our advice unto him; and therefore, not to overburden the people and especially the meaner sort, he propounded to give 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens for the present, and when we meet again at the next sessions [sic] we shall be ready to make good our engagement and give more as occasion shall require. This he thought would both please the workman and set forward the work.
[f. 88v] Here, upon notice that the Lords were set, the Speaker came to the chair and the bills that had formerly passed were sent up to them to speed them the more, and until the messengers returned there were read:
An act to enable justices of the peace to give possession in certain cases. Engrossed.
An act for the confirmation of exchange of land between the Prince and Sir Lewis Watson, Rockingham in Northamptonshire.
A message from the Lords for the committees of both Houses to meet at Whitehall the next day at 2 o'clock to report the opinion of both Houses for the clearing of the Duke of Buckingham.
Then the Speaker went out of the chair again.
[Committee of the Whole House]
Sir Edward Coke would give the King satisfaction and would give the country a reason for it also, viz., those 4 things propounded in the King's speech, therefore do we give; and, as old as he is, he hopes to live to see the King of Spain's Indies taken from him. So he would relieve the King and not overburden the subject neither. Ergo, would have us give 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens now, and at Michaelmas when we meet again as we see cause.
Sir Robert Phelips would fain have the treaties broken both for avoiding future danger and for the rectifying of things for the present amiss at home, and his greatest inducement to give was the interest and engagement of the Prince in this business. He would have us so give as the King might see our assistance hearty; and if it were not accepted, then were we free. He concurred for 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens, with the forenamed restrictions, and would have a clause inserted of meeting again and then we would [f. 89] give according as is fit. This both safe and honourable. Let our gift have reputation and yet not ourselves engaged beyond occasion.
Sir Edward Cecil says war can neither be measured by the foot nor by the rod, and therefore is sorry to hear them agitate the poverty of the kingdom, which is a discouragement to war. Let us resolve, ergo, to give the most we are able and leave it so.
Secretary Calvert. We are already passed the Rubicon. It is in vain to look back. We must not now blanch the war, for that must come necessarily both defensive and offensive, and I wish the defensive part had been thought of in our time of security. We must provide for the offensive, too; but to treat de modo is not fit here, that too great a secret of state. I assent to give 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens, and that we assure his Majesty we will never leave him in the pursuit of our advice.
Sir Peter Heyman would have them that here answer for their countries be careful so to proceed as it may not be said that they drew on the King, as if it came from them, but let all issue as from the King himself, and so they shall satisfy them for whom they serve.
Sir Dudley Digges differs from him and says he would have it proceed from ourselves, for they that sent us surely of themselves would do more in this case than we do. He would have the States drawn into the business, and the sum that we give to grow high that the King of Denmark might receive in his £80,000, which he has lent already to this business.
Sir Thomas Edmondes was glad to see the question declined of the particulars propounded [f. 89v] to be done this year and that we grow towards a resolution. He moves to do it with alacrity and allows the proposition of 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens.
Mr. [William] Nyell was confident that the Spaniard could not hurt us. He lived in those parts where they dealt and [?foiled] with him daily both by sea and land, and surely, says he, our people look but for such a day.
Sir Francis Seymour was glad to see the people so well affected to the King and the kingdom. He likes of what is propounded and moves that the papists may pay double subsidies, and that will give our people satisfaction for what we shall give for them.
Sir John Savile was only troubled that he could not see some probable proportion of the whole expense. He would also put a sword into the King's hand but would not go about to teach him how to use it. Marry, he would provide for the offensive as well as the defensive. He would be satisfied to what war we were inclining, and thinks that his masters of the gown (sic. the lawyers) had reckoned without their host. He was willing to give more, perhaps, but he would have it an appropriated sum according to the charge.
Sir Edward Coke answers him that it is for those 4 things so often specified that we give, that none of it is like to come to the King's coffers and so would have that clause inserted in the act. But we cannot particularize the sum nor proportion the parts. He moves to give with alacrity and accompany our gift with an humble petition for bills of grace that so the subject may be enabled to give more.
Sir John Savile would have added to that petition that the benefits of recusants might be granted also, for that would ease the charge [f. 90] and do much good, likewise that the pretermitted customs might be put down and so the people might receive encouragement.
Sir William Herbert dissents from them both and would have no petition because what we give now is to the war and not to the King, and is retribution enough to have the treaties broken; when we relieve the King's particular necessities, then we may petition.
Sir Thomas Jermyn is of the same mind and would have nothing moved now because those things will come in their time.
At length, they called for the question and it being long in framing it was moved that a committee might do it, in conclusion Sir Edwin Sandys that sat in the chair, and came out after much and mature debate in these words:
As many as think fit that upon his Majesty's public declaration for the utter dissolving and discharge of the two treaties of the marriage and Palatinate, in pursuit of our advice therein and towards the support of the war which is likely to ensue, and more particularly for these 4 points proposed by his Majesty — the defence of the realm, the securing of Ireland, the assisting of his Majesty's neighbours the states of the United Provinces and other his friends and allies, and for the setting forth of his royal navy — there should be granted for the present 3 subsidies and 3 fifteens, to be levied after his Majesty shall be pleased to make his said declaration, and expended by the direction of such committees or commissioners as hereafter shall be agreed upon in this present session of Parliament.
To this question, there was not one negative given.
[f. 90v] A motion for a committee to frame an answer to the King upon that which he demanded and we have now done.
Then came the debate for the time to pay it in. Some would have 2 years; others that it shall be divided into 3 parts and paid at 3 severals [sic] months' end; others before May come twelve months because of rents coming in; others would have that dispute respited until another time. But it was thought fit to do it now, and we gave it with alacrity so to pay it with celerity and crown our own gift and the compass of one whole year after his Majesty's public declaration was agreed upon to pay it in. This also was resolved by question and had never a negative.