The Diary of Thomas Burton
9 February 1658-9

Sponsor

History of Parliament Trust

Publication

Author

John Towill Rutt (editor)

Year published

1828

Pages

Citation Show another format:

'The Diary of Thomas Burton: 9 February 1658-9', Diary of Thomas Burton esq, volume 3: January - March 1659 (1828), pp. 152-194. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=36903 Date accessed: 21 August 2014.


Highlight

(Min 3 characters)

Wednesday, February 9, 1658–9.

The members stayed till nine for the Speaker's coming. After that he came, and Mr. Cooper prayed.

The House resumed the debate adjourned yesterday, upon the Bill for Recognition of his Highness, &c.

Mr. Neville. I would not hinder your business for a world. There are some petitioners at the door. All have honest, old faces. I desire they may be called in.

Mr. Knightley. Till your House be full, turn not your face on any petitioners. If it be good, take it. If you like it not, let it alone.

Mr. Weaver. I move that the petitioners be called in.

Captain Baynes. I am glad to see the people in love with their representative again. It was never denied to call in petitioners.

Sir Henry Vane. The people were never denied to petition. I leave it with you if Whitehall give any discouragement to petition. The addresses, (fn. 1) I suppose, are received.

Mr. Bacon, Mr. Starkey, and Mr. Pedley moved, that it was against the order of the House, to let any thing intervene, and no man could speak against it without leave.

Sir William Wheeler. I apprehend not that the petition is of such consequence as to obstruct so great a business as is before you. This may hold all day.

Mr. Scot. Petitions were never denied, and you will spend more time in debating whether it shall be read or no, than you would do, if you should read it.

Mr. Steward. Nothing can come in of more consequence than is before you. I would have another day appointed for hearing the petition.

Colonel Okey. I move to have the petition taken in. I am glad the people do own their representative. It was once very desirable.

Mr. Hoskins. I am against the reading of the Petition, as against the orders of the House.

Colonel — (fn. 2) . If those gentlemen (fn. 3) go away without seeing your faces, it will discourage abroad.

Mr. Knightley. The gentleman has moved for reading it; yet the sense of the House being against it, I would have two or three gentlemen go out and acquaint the petitioners, that as soon as ever this debate is over, they shall be called in.

Colonel Gorges. There is no exception against the petition, but against the timing of it. At this rate, if you break in upon your orders, you shall be interrupted every hour.

Lord Lambert moved to have the petitioners called in presently. He made a long speech.

Colonel Allured seconded the motion, that the petitioners be called in, and a day appointed for reading of it.

Mr. Disbrowe. Nothing can be of greater concernment than what is before you. The eyes of all nations are upon you, to see what you will do concerning the owning your Chief Magistrate. I would have nothing come in the balance with it. Because three or four are waiting at the door, should you put off a business of this nature, of greatest concernment ?

Lord Falkland. I move, that two or three members be sent out to acquaint them that the petition shall be read, as soon as the great business is over. Mr. Danby. I move, that it be referred to the Committee of Grievances, which sits this day.

Sir Walter Earle. I have no skill in physiognomy. It matters not to me that they are old faces. (fn. 4) I second Mr. Knightley's motion.

Ordered, that Sir Walter Earle, Mr. Enightley, and Colonel Gorges acquaint the petitioners, that as soon as ever the great business is over, their petition shall be read, and the said members went out accordingly. It seems they were well satisfied.

The orders of the day were read, and the question on the Bill of Recognition, called for.

Mr. Speaker. The debate of yesterday was not reduceable to a question. The proper question is, if this Bill shall be committed.

Colonel Kenrick. The Bill stands in need of commitment. There have been various debates upon it.

1. The debate seems to invalidate what was done in the Long Parliament, to validate and advance what is before you. I own no spiritual nor outward liberty, but from the Long Parliament.

2. It is told us, that we have taken an oath at the door; by which we cannot clearly understand the Chief Magistrate's power, whether he assume it, as his father did, or has it from the Instrument, or that this Parliament should give it him. It is fit our oath should be understood. I see no reason, but as those gentlemen took away the Government from the Instrument, so we may take it away now from the Petition and Advice.

It is said, that the Petition and Advice came in by better authority. But whoso considers the last Protector's speech, will find he thought he had as good authority, by the Instrument of Government, and as many witnesses for it, as this can have. I am sure he said, no prince in Christendom had a better title than he had. Therefore, I hope we shall not be hurried on, to take us off, before we know where we are.

The matter is, the investing of a power in the Chief Magistrate. I would gladly know, what the office of this Chief Magistrate doth imply; what is involved in it. I would have it understood, whether the House of Lords shall be appurtenances to this Chief Magistrate; whether the militia, negative voice, and an uncontrolable power, shall go along with it. Your learned counsel were taken from the bar, when pleading for your liberties. (fn. 5) If the power of thus sending gentlemen to prison, or the prerogative of these things go along with the office, then I look upon it as the King's cause, and the maintenance of his quarrel.

So far from giving my voice clearly to this business, till these things be cleared up, I had rather lie in Newgate till God deliver us.

I desire it may be committed, that we may certainly know what we give.

It is between you and the Chief Magistrate now, as between a widow and her servant that go to be married. The man will offer all things very fair; but unless she make all things sure before marriage, when he is married, he will tell her then, that all is his by virtue of his office.

Colonel Gorges. I never rise to speak without great fear. I never heard it declared that you fought against King, Lords, and Commons.

If Hannibal be ad portas, (fn. 6) it is not to fright you but to excise you. It is an ill doctrine that promissory oaths bind, as that gentleman says. If promissory oaths cannot be dispensed with, we are in a sad condition. Oaths are assertory, or promissory. If I swear I see you in the chair, and do not, I swear amiss; but if I swear I will see you there to-morrow, that is subject to a condition and limitation, that is, if it please God to send me strength, or the like.

I shall give my ready consent to the single person and a House of Lords. The more checks, the better the Constitu tion. You are not ripe to determine what you will have the other House. What the Long Parliament was, for reasons of state I shall not say. It was for interest. I would have no reflexions on the Lord Protector. I would have them quietly to lie in their graves. I hope they shall never rise again.

I never read of a Commonwealth able to stand without war. A general may make himself chief, when he pleases. Venice (fn. 7) is beholden for their quiet to their situation. It was ill said of a sober person: "a French parasite." (fn. 8) Those that are for Commonwealth, are but to bring us into confusion.

I know not what is meant by your restrictions. I would not give away a tittle of your right. If thus you qualify it, the question will be whether the Protector shall be Protector, till you have agreed on the limitations. The militia naturally goes with the legislature. Every sheriff and county has it. Our ancestors never disputed it. The negative voice was never denied the Chief Magistrate, only he was bound to deny no law that was offered from the people. (fn. 9) What is exorbitant in the Petition and Advice, I would have it amended.

Mr. Stephens. Here has been much said on a Parliament that was too much on the part of pulling down. They were at last pulled down themselves. I was of that Parliament. I hope I am now of a Parliament that will be as much for building up. I was never of that opinion, that a minor part should supplant a major part by force or fraud. Non necesse est, vivere, est, bene vivere, and via recta est via tuta. I have observed that a packing of Parliament, or a packing in Parliament, can never have good success. De malo quaritis, non gaudet tertio Hœres. The Act of the Parliament, 21 Rich. II. was repealed by 1 Hen. IV. The Parliament 1 Mariœ, established the Pope's power and authority, as a string when strained too high at last breaks. It did so in the hands of all kings. It did so in a Parliament. So it may be in a Protector. I am for the constitution we lived under; for building up the ancient fabric.

1. Because we lived peaceably under it for many years, and the nation prospered.

2. Because the nature of the people doth best agree with it.

I am for building up that structure, but not with untempered mortar: never with flattery and fear.

The noble person that we find in the Government, I know him not; but the character of him, abroad, and here. He has much gained the affection of the people. Not such an one to be had, none so deserving. Not that I am ready to give away my liberty.

The question is only executory, not declarative; only as a direction to your Committee. I would have you go to the question as you have propounded it, with the limitations and restrictions, &c.

Major-General Packer. I am very unable to utter my thoughts, so as to contribute to the great work that lies before you.

I am one among many others, that were guilty of the errors of these latter times, and of the irruptions of the privileges of this House; for which I humbly ask you forgiveness. I was led into this mistake upon a double consideration.

1. Being made to believe that the great work of reformation was not likely to be carried on in this House; or otherwise than by contracting the power into one hand, especially such an one as we had fixed upon. I confess, like a sick man, I have been driven and tossed from bed to board; but now I am heartily glad we are returned into this way; that necessity has brought us back to the same opportunity of reformation.

2. An apprehension I had, never to get liberty or freedom of conscience from this House; but I have been ready to check myself often since, considering all liberty of this kind hath originally flown from hence. I confess, I have a little need of some indulgence in that point. I hope I am on the great foundation of religion, the same with all. I have seen, of late, that those good people of this nation, that are desirous of liberty of conscience, are now more willing to ask liberty at your doors than any where else. I am one of those. The good people that have feared your severity in that point, are now willing to seek it here. I hope the two great interests of religious and civil liberty shall never be parted. It has been an observation in this election, to bring those good men in here again, that were for good men's liberty. I say it to my shame, I have been one of those that have opposed some of those liberties. But to the point in hand:—

This is a Bill of very great weight. I admire that the persons that brought it in, being men of integrity, should be so pressing, to have it pass so speedily. I have exceptions to the particulars of the Bill.

I. To recognize his right and title. This implies an establishment, a right already. I am afraid that word carried too much in the late Petition and Advice. I beg your pardon if I say amiss. I am sorry it should be driven on in so preposterous a manner. It hath been said, that it (fn. 10) is next the Gospel, a thing inviolable; and so, unnecessary to subject it to the approbation of this House. There could nothing be said more of a Government, than was said of the Instrument. I was of that House; and, by reason of my relation, I had such an obligation to that person, who, I hope, is now in heaven, that it was expected I was bound to be thorough-paced in every thing.

There was a clause in the Instrument of Government, at which I could not but rejoice; a clause to qualify the members, which the last Parliament did rather enlarge than straiten. The qualifications in the Petition and Advice, were very considerable: "men fearing God, and of integrity." When persons speak words in one sense now, and after interpret them in another, it should make us cautious what we should do. Those very words were interpreted, that those only were men of integrity that should comply with that Government. One hundred were kept out, (fn. 11) upon straining that word.

This Parliament went on very successfully: as many good men and good things on the whole, as ever were in any Parliament. Suddenly and unexpectedly, one that is now dead, Major-General Jephson, (fn. 12) made a motion to break in upon this. After this, a gentleman came with a paper in his hand. (fn. 13) He is now in the other House, and well deserved to be. He said he had found by Providence, a paper; I know not where. The poor gentleman was tossed from place to place, down almost as far as the bar, and then he was brought up again. Providence ordered it so, as brought him to his place, near the chair.

Some gentlemen spoke twenty times a day, posting all, like the formality of a Bill. At length, it must be done. It could not be done by way of Act. That expects too great deliberation. Therefore, it must be done by the readiest way, by way of Petition and Advice. Necessity drives it on. It must pass. I saw the Bill before it came in. It was for making King, Lords, and Commons; and it prayed the Protector to assume kingly government. It was an ill precedent, that it was not in the power of the Parliament to give, but he must assume.

I concur that the gentleman deserves the government as well as any man in the world, but I would have him settled upon a better foundation; against which there is no just exception.

II. As to the body of the Bill, "Whereas his Highness became Protector by the death of his father." A strange expression, Sir. He did not do so. He became so, if he be so at all, by the Petition and Advice, by the declaration or nomination of his father, or a proclamation from the Council. He became so "by the death of his father!" This is, tacitly, to admit his title hereditary. Why so did King Charles on the death of King James; and this brings in hereditary government by a side wind. I believe, for all that, he would be glad of your sanction or establishment.

Oh! but he had many addresses, and he would magnify his office. I would not lay much stress on the addresses. If the King of Scots had landed at Dover, and had a force, he might have had as many addresses, and by another sort of people. Such are easily obtained. (fn. 14) The people are like a lock of sheep. I shall not here insist upon the horrid and intolerable flatteries in most of them. I commend the dis cretion of the Intelligencer, that has husbanded them so well as to have our allowance for every week, and not yet to have done with them. But the blasphemies in them are intolerable. Naylor was committed and whipped for lesser blasphemies than those in the book. I shall for example sake propound them to the Committee for Religion, that there they may receive discountenance and a check. (fn. 15)

I perceive there is a great design to settle things in a hurry. To that end we are affrighted with dangers from Holland. But, thanks be to God! London Bridge is between us. You may sit here two or three months without danger of the Dutch. I wonder that was not used as an argument when the Long Parliament was dissolved. I ask your pardon for it. The seamen minded not who was at their backs, but who went before. A more honourable war was never undertaken than that with the Dutch, and yet, in the midst of that war, that House was broken. (fn. 16)

After, the little Parliament was dissolved, when that very affair was in hand. Yet that Parliament then was dissolved, and the war went on. I wish that peace, when it was concluded, had not been made upon very carnal and bad grounds. There was an interregnum for a month.

I wish your Bill had been a Bill of Recognition for the Army; forty weeks pay behind, as I am informed. This had been a good argument, if it had been to recognize the soldiers, and to move for something of relief for them. I do not think the recognizing the Protector will sink one Holland ship, or affright one enemy. Your men and monies must do it.

There is no need of a previous vote. This previous vote will hereafter come into the Bill, and will work in time. Let us not, as we have done, play an after game. The importunity of passing it so hastily, makes me jealous. Experience tells me it is contrary to what wise men do. Oh! but the Protector is a good man ! What should we fear ? Give us good laws rather than good men. I will trust more to good laws than to the best men. These are snares. We had a good man before; we all thought so: but he had his temptations. God hath left it upon record that he did not answer all the trust that was put in him.

A good man had a loving child, and this good man would settle all upon this loving child. A year after we find this good man sitting in the chimney corner. Every thing then sets off the love of the child; if he give him but a pittance for a pound, he is a good child. But when I settle my estate upon, my child, though never so good, he shall take my estate with a schedule; a plain bargain annexed unto it.

It best becomes a grave council, to see your work before you; or you may give away what you will be glad, with all your heart, that you had to give again. I shall insist upon two things.

1. If you vote he shall be Chief Magistrate, who shall judge how far that expression shall extend? You shall not judge, the Chief Magistrate shall interpret.

In the last Parliament there was a thing called the "other House." Never was any thing brought in with more sugarsweet and plausible words. It shall be a. check upon restraint of liberty of conscience. There shall be no bringing in of the old nobility. This makes me suspect we are going to the same things. I thank God I was none of those that gave it my vote. It died at first and was buried; but in the next session it rose up again, as I have good cause to know. Then, it seems, it was judged a Lord's House, except for some limitations. I thought it was not a Lord's House, but another House. But for my undertaking to judge this, I was sent for, accused of perjury, and outed of a place of 600l. per annum. I would not give it up. He told me I was not apt: I, that had served him fourteen years, ever since he was captain of a troop of horse, (fn. 17) till he came to this power; and had commanded a regiment seven years: without any trial or appeal, with the breath of his nostrils I was outed; and lost not only my place, but a dear friend to boot. Five captains under my command, all of integrity, courage, and valour, were outed with me, (fn. 18) because they could not comply; they could not say that was a House of Lords. Divers in this House are sufferers of the same kind. When you come to settle the militia, I shall make use of it, that you may consider your old servants, and not leave the single person the judge; not place it where the army and officers may all be blown away by the puff and breath of one man.

Who then shall be judge of this important matter. Westminster Hall knows it as well as A. B. C. that the judges were of different opinions lately, both in the North and in the West, and perhaps they will be doubtful whether a Chief Magistrate in a state be the same with a King upon his throne. One jury may find for the Protector, another not.

I think you have as able and learned judges as ever sat upon the benches; yet they are men: interest has swayed them, as it has swayed me. I am ashamed to tell you how far fear, respect, and hope of preferment have made me swerve from what my conscience thought just. Perhaps others may be subject to the like infirmities. Coney's case I will not judge. Learned men were carried to the Tower, as it was told you. A gentleman imprisoned could not get a lawyer to plead for him. (fn. 19)

The Judges in the King's time, I will not say they were perjured, but there are great temptations where the sword and where the money lie. Has not a single person power to put out or in those that will not judge for him ? If a judge will not judge to-day, he shall be no judge to-morrow.

But how shall the judge determine what is the power of the Chief Magistrate ? Is the law so dear in that point ? I own the law, and hold all that I have by it; but do the laws determine where the militia and the negative voice shall be ? If determined, what was the reason of all the late wars ? Either the law is not dear, or interpreters have been biassed. Latter ages have smarted for what it is said our ancestors did, in not meddling with a debate on the negative voice.

If they do not judge according to the old law, they must judge by the Petition and Advice, and should they so judge, that will go a great way indeed; for by deductions and consequences, merely from the oath, he would make us to swallow the whole Petition and Advice, even the Lords' House to boot, and for not doing that I was esteemed perjured.

I shall not say the Petition and Advice was unduly, but unseasonably and importunatdy obtained. I would rather choose my habitation under the most arbitrary Government in the world, than under this Petition and Advice without its being amended.

He hath 130,000l. per annum settled upon him, besides 60,000l. more. This is at his disposal. (fn. 20) He is sworn, indeed, to follow advice of his council; but I will speak nothing how easy a council may be swayed. He hath an army of forty or fifty thousand soldiers to assist him, besides a navy. Was the King's militia ever to be compared to this ? to a standing army, (fn. 21) all depending upon the breath of his nostrils, and with 1,900,000l. per annum to gratify them, be sides their pay ? The militia in old times was nothing to this. Those were men of interest and estates, that would not be easily biassed; gentlemen of quality, who had not any pay; not to be compared to a standing army, which may be swayed. Besides all this, he hath power also to confer what honours or powers he pleases, places, monies, and what not. I hear a rumour that the army thought they should have a General. They made some address. It was ill resented.

Ay, but you have the purse. But, indeed, he may live without you, for all that. If he be a little straitened, it is but making a peace with Spain, or retrenching his army a little, and he may. make a pretty chest, to live without your purse.

Power may alter good men. He has a negative upon you, you may be dissolved to-morrow. What power have you ? Ah! a Chief Magistrate with such a power and a negative voice, who would have ever thought to have seen this?

Sir, why should we, by such a vote as this, give away that in gross, and by wholesale, which we must expect to beg again by piecemeal ? We shall have to go and say, "We beseech you, as an act of grace, give the poor Commons a little of their own." We gave him a talent, and perhaps after much and humble entreating, he will return us a farthing; and when we get any thing, we must still pay dearly for it.

I am sorry to transgress, by my long speech, the wholesome rules you gave us at your chair. (fn. 22) Upon the whole matter, I humbly move, that you refer the whole to a Committee of the whole House, to consider of such qualifications as are fit to be added to it; and be not entangled with a vote. If this may not be, then make the. previous vote, as was said before.

Mr. Trevor stood up to speak.

Mr. Weaver excepted, saying, he had spoken twice before.

Serjeant Maynard. I move, that he have leave. Indeed, if a debate be adjourned, he cannot speak again; but if adjourned only from day to day, a man may speak again.

Lord Lambert. I move, that he have leave to speak.

Mr. Trevor. I value the orders of the House more than any thing I could speak.

Mr. Cartwright. To add any qualifications will not be for the Protector's advantage; because then it may be taken away again; nor for the people's advantage, because, before, the Protector governed by his own will. Then comes the Petition and Advice, and limits him to govern according to the laws. This question says he shall not govern but as this House shall agree. Now, suppose, before you have qualified him, he should dissolve us. Then he will be left to govern us by will as before, therefore, it were better to let him stand as he does. I would have a previous vote, that nothing shall be of force that you now pass, till all shall be agreed on.

Colonel Fielder. It is a mistake to say we are not now governed by law. As to the objection that it was not a free Parliament; if this be void, then others are also void. I hope this Petition and Advice will hold as a law, though in some things imperfect. If it be a law, it must have the formalities of repealing it. Add to it what you please. I would part with none of that.

There is nothing clear in the Petition and Advice to limit the negative voice, but that of money; which your Chief Magistrate will stand more need of than you will do of laws; having the old laws. I move to have the words added, "according to the Petition and Advice."

Mr. Knightley. I am sorry to hear that doctrine, that the Petition and Advice is the foundation of your rights, rather than Magna Charta, (fn. 23) the statute De Tallagio, (fn. 24) and the Pe tition of Right. (fn. 25) I would not have it named. Haply you will think it fitter to pass it in silence than to arrange it here. I would have those words left out.

Sir Henry Vane. (fn. 26) I know very well the great disadvantage that any person suffers, that in this great and grave assembly shall, at this time a day, offer you any thing. You have spent three, days in the debate, and it is not unsuitable to your wisdom to be yet on the threshold. The more time you have taken, the more successful, probably, it may be.

That which called me up at this time was what the last gentleman said, that is, to do things with unity. At least we shall be at greater unity, if not greater amity, by having patience to hear one another, and admitting the variety of reasons and judgments which are offered by all men. Though a large field has been led into, the thing is very short. Consider what it is we are upon, a Protector in the office of Chief Magistrate. But the office of right is in yourselves. It is in your hands, that you may have the honour of giving or not giving, as best likes you. You may confer it, if you please, for any law to the contrary brought now into your House. I shall advise you to this, as was moved: give not by wholesale, so as to beg again by retail. (fn. 27) To give, will, at any time, get you many friends. It therefore concerns you in this business, to have your eyes in your heads, to look well about you, that it slip not from you without considering what is your right, and the right of the people.

The wise providence of God has brought things in these our days, to the state of government as we now find it. I observe a variety of opinions as to what our state of Government is.

Some conceive that it is in King, Lords, and Commons; that the principles of old foundations yet remain entire, so as all our evils are imputed to our departure from thence.

It hath pleased God, by well-known steps, to put a period, and to bring that Government to a dissolution. All the three Parliaments in the late King's time, found the state of things in slavery. I have had some experience since the two Parliaments in 1640, and remember when the Parliament considered the state of the nations, that they found them in a grand thraldom of oppression and tyranny, endeavouring to carry us up even into Popery. God made us see the state and condition we were then in. The consideration of these things would have made us make long sweeps to redress it; but Providence led us on step by step. Therefore, having the legislative power, God saw it good that we should change the Government: but we found great difficulties in the work, as most men were willing rather to sit down by slavery, than to buy themselves out of it at so great a price.

The first thing expected was, that justice should be done upon delinquents; who had so much the ear of that Prince, that they told him he had power enough to protect himself and them too. He had the power of the militia. These grievances brought us to consider where the right of the militia lay; and when we saw it was in ourselves, we thought to make use of it with moderation; choosing rather to use it to reduce the King by fair means, than otherwise.

So well satisfied was this House then with the principles of that Government, that there was then a declaration (fn. 28) drawn in favour of it. I was one of that Committee. I hear reflections as if I changed from that. I think it now my duty to change with better reason. They did think fit to publish that which was to preserve that ancient fabrick of Government; according to such qualifications as might be for the public service. I am well satisfied it was the clear intent of their hearts.

But this encouraged the King, and brought it to that issue at last, that he hardened his heart; till it was resolved to make no more addresses, but to bring him to judgment. But, in the meantime, applications were made to him, still imploring him to be reconciled; and nothing was wanting in the House, that if possible, he might have saved the Government and himself with it; but God would not have it so.

God knows best what that work is, which he is to bring forth. When all applications could not prevail, they thought fit to bring the King to judgment. Thereby the state of affairs was much altered.

This House then thought fit to apply themselves to the Lords, against the Scots' invasion, and in the great case of justice upon the King. The Lords refused both. (fn. 29) In this juncture, they were reduced to the necessity of doing that which is now the foundation of that building upon which you must stand, if you expect to be prosperous.

When they came to look upon the delinquency of the King, and considered him as an object of justice, it was then declared by them that the taking away of kingship was the only happy way of returning to their own freedom. Their meaning thereby was, that the original of all just power was in the people, and was reserved wholly to them, the representatives.

When the Parliament, in questions as to what was just and right, had gathered up all into themselves, it was disputed in what way the King should be tried. They counted themselves then prepared to grant out a commission to, try the King. (fn. 30) I confess I was then exceedingly to seek, in the clearness of my judgment, as to the trial of the King. I was for six weeks absent from my seat here, out of my tenderness of blood. Yet, all power being thus in the people originally, I myself was afterward in the business. (fn. 31)

The King, upon his trial, denies this power to be in the Parliament: they try it, and they seal it with the blood of the King This action of theirs, was commanded by this House to be recorded in all the courts of Westminster Hall and in the Tower.

If you be not now satisfied with this business, you will put a strange construction upon that action, and upon all that has been done by the General and soldiers. If you, here, will now doubt this right to be in you, you draw the guilt upon the body of the whole nation. You join issue with him upon that point. It will be questioned whether that was an act of justice or murder. (fn. 32)

Brought, step by step, unto your natural right, by an unavoidable necessity, that little remnant of the Parliament were now the representative of the nation, springing up from another root. This had a more clear foundation, being thus the supreme judicature, to comprehend all government in itself. Whether the death of the King caused not a dissolution of that Parliament, as to that doing it then had, and as it was taken to be, I know not. I leave that to the long robe.

It was then necessary, as the first act, to have resort to the foundation of all just power, and to create and establish a free state; to bring the people out of bondage, from all pretence of superiority over them. It seemed plain to me, that all offices had their rise from the people, and that all should be accountable to them. If this be monstrous, then it is monstrous to be safe and rational, and to bear your own good.

It is objected, that this nation could not bear that government; but Holland bears it against the power of Orange. They keep the office of Stadholder vacant to this day. (fn. 33) So do other places. This is a principle, that we may bear it, if we can bear our own liberties, or that we have not the impatience of the people of Israel: unless with the Israelites, we will return to Egypt, weary of our journey to Canaan.

This being the case, we were declared a free state. We were after tossed upon all those billows that sunk us in the sands. Though we miscarried then; though this free state was shipwrecked, yet you have got a liberty left to say it is now again in your possession; else I am mistaken. If it be so, I hope you will not part with it, but upon grounds of wisdom and fidelity. If you were but arbitrating in the cause of a private friend, you would make the best bargain for him that you could; you would so do as not to give away the right of him by whom you were intrusted, but upon good grounds. That which you give, give it freely on grounds of justice. Understand well your terms.

This brings me to the consideration of another thing, which is, that the first government being dissolved, another is brought into the room. Though not perfect, yet, it is said, the foundations are laid, upon which we may build a superstructure of which we need not be ashamed. Now shall we be under-builders to supreme Stuart ? We have no need, no obligation upon us, to return to that old government. I have a vote.

For the covenant with the Scots, (fn. 34) their invasion did render that covenant invalid. They would have repossessed a King and imposed him upon this nation, by virtue of that covenant which they had broken. The Parliament showed that their shackles were broken; it did not oblige any further. That it was famous and had power: that was the Israelites' argument for worshipping the sun and moon. If we return to an obligation, by virtue of the covenant, by the same reason we may return to worship the sun and moon. I hope those shall not sway here.

Lastly, at the dissolution of the Long Parliament, you lost your possession, not your right. The Chief Magistrate's place was assumed without a law. There was assumed with it, not only the power of the crown on the terms of former kings, which hath its foundation and regulation by the laws, but the possession was assumed. You were then under various forms of administration: some that had not the characters of trust upon them, some too limited. Still you were kept out of possession. Parliaments have been called, and as often broken.

This Petition and Advice, which is now so much insisted upon, was never intended to be the settled government, but only to be a pair of stairs to ascend the throne; a step to King, Lords, and Commons. It pleases God to let you see you have not been ill-counselled to wait upon him a first day, and a second, and a third day, to see what he will hold out for your peace and safety; for asserting the liberties of the people. This Bill huddles up, in wholesale, what you have fought for, and is hasted on, lest you should see it.

We have now a Petition and Advice that comes in place of the ancient Government, the Instrument, and all other forms. Yet, if this were the case, you are, notwithstanding the Petition and Advice, in the clear rightful possession of this Government, which cannot be disposed of but by your consent. The old Protector thought it fit to have it given him from you, and had it by your pleasure invested upon him. But, although it was acknowledged that he bad power to get it, yet he thought fit to make it your free gift. It will not be denied now: a presenting this office by that Parliament, and the open investiture of him in your chair, prove it. Yet as to this gift of yours, I dare be bold to say, the thing given was hardly understood. By giving of this office, they gave, in the 16th Article, the power of their own dissolution.

It being acknowledged to have been your gift, let us consider what was given, and how given.

The gift was the executive power, the ruling power. That is the office of Chief Magistrate. All the legislative was then in the people.

The Commonwealth would not put the executive power Out of their hands. For this reason, they set up those shadows, the Keepers of the liberties of England, as an executive power, to distinguish it from the legislative.

This, then, was the thing given. The Petition and Advice hath made a difficulty of returning.

The power of the purse indeed is left us, because they know not how to take it from us. There is no dispute but you have a right to open the people's purse; because Kings knew they could not well take it: but the Chief Magistrate; they would not allow you that to give.

Now, this power and the office were given, it seems, by the regulation of the Petition and Advice; the whole executive power of the late King was all given, at one clap, to the late Protector for life. This being given to him, was not given absolutely to any other for life. Nothing was given him more, only the nomination and declaration of a successor; which must be according to law. So says the Petition and Advice. This nomination must first appear, before we can say this gentleman is the undoubted Protector. Had I thought this had been said before, I should have spared both you and myself.

That which is now brought in, the Bill of Recognition, takes it for granted, that there is one in the possession of the Protectorship; for it requires that you acknowledge his right and title, not that we shall acknowledge his person, and then inquire, what is this right and title ? It is hard we should be put upon that, Let us know what this right and title is that we must recognize. But it seems the Parliament that made the Petition and Advice, they gave it, and we must acknowledge it.

If he hath any right, it must be by one of these three ways:—

1. Either by the grace of God and by God's Providence; that if he hath a sword, he may take whatever is within the reach of it, and thus maintain his right.

2. Or as the son of the conqueror. He was, indeed, a conqueror on your behalf; but never, of yourselves, fit for you to recognize.

3. Or lastly, by the Petition and Advice. But that cannot be urged, until it doth appear that he hath it according to that. Yet that is only a nomination, which hath nothing of constitution until you have made it. He must come to you for that. I appeal then, if this has not deserved three days' debate. Deserves it not more, to set nails upon it ? May it not deserve a Grand Committee, to convince one another in love and unity ?

Therefore I shall move that this Bill may, upon the whole matter, be committed to a Grand Committee, where reason may prevail.

It is not a sudden recognition, a sudden obtaining of the first steps that will direct us fairly into the room. It must be on such an unshaken foundation, you will maintain it against the old line. If you be minded to resort to the old Government, you are not many steps from the old family. They will be too hard for you, if that Government be restored.

Instead of the son of a conqueror by nature, make him a son by adoption. Take him into your own family, and make him such an one as the Great One shall direct you. When the army see they are yours, they will be protectored by you.

I would have all names of sectaries laid aside, and righteousness go forward. Let fees and extortions be looked into, which make the laws themselves your oppressors. I have discharged my conscience, and look on it as a special testimony of God's Providence that I am here to speak this before you.

Mr. Gewen. I take it for granted, that nothing shall bind this nation, that is not done in a full and free Parliament. I am not for the humble Petition and Advice; yet the carriage in that Parliament, compared with the old Parliament, is very innocent.

The latter end of the Long Parliament was assumed. They took a thing which neither God nor the people ever gave. It was in the collective, not in the representative. All was null and void which they did. Never was such violation of the rights of Parliament as in that Parliament. They were but splendida peccata, felix scelus. This, in truth, is the fifth Act of meeting in Parliament since that time.

Nolumus hunc regnare. I hear divers gentlemen speak against the Bill; not what they would have, but what they would not have. They would return to a Commonwealth again; to former irregularities. It is. impossible for them to bring that to pass, unless, with an army they take out all the members that are against returning. My opinion always was, and is, that a well regulated monarchy is best. Fieri nan debet, factum valet. For my part, I had no hand in it. I pray God, deliver me from bood-guiltiness. We are like the needle that is touched, wading still till we come to the old foundation. There must be some exceptions to the Bill, else it cannot be committed. I would not have it that the people should be indefinite in their obedience. I would have it limited to the law. I am against a Grand Committee; but would have the question, with the additions, moved.

Serjeant Maynard. A large time has been spent in the debate; the consequence of it requires it. I shall use no preamble. We have had stories by gentlemen of the late troubles, quorum pars magna fuerunt. It is not pertinent to our question to tell those stories. There were great oppressions; delinquents protected.

This was not the quarrel for blood. God deliver me from that. We must go to Mariana (fn. 35) for grounds to prove that the sword could be taken up other than to defend.

The first cause of the quarrel, was not to assert to ourselves a right which was no right before. But justice upon delinquents being denied, it is true, in process of time, these things came on; the militia, negative voice, and tender consciences. You looked upon such things as those without which you could not lay down arms. Such, then, was the cause of carrying on the war, not of taking up arms. God forbid ! I would rather have been a Cavalier a thousand times. As to arms raised to protect delinquents, that could not be the King's act, (fn. 36) only his evil counsels.

It was moved, that the right did revert by escheat to the people upon the great change; and now you must give it.

It is clear you came hither upon the Petition and Advice. I would have any man answer it. I challenge no man. I was not at making it; yet I am bound by it as a law.

It it said force was upon them; the House was then under a fear, and so not obliging. Look back and you will find a greater force upon the face of the greatest affairs. Was there not a force when they sent men to demand their members, eleven of them. (fn. 37)

Our members were carried to the gaol; one from behind me, another before me. I asked if they would take me. They said, they knew not what to make me. I came again, and before I spoke, it was cried I spoke. A Committee was appointed to inquire of it. We had all been voted traitors but for some worthy gentlemen that stood against it. Never was a greater force than on that Parliament. If that nullifies an Act of Parliament, this will be overruled when we are in dust and ashes. All your sales will be void; an ill bargain for your monies, on Bishops and Dean and Chapters' lands.

Who dare say this out of this House, that this law (fn. 38) is void. This is a law as well as all done in 48, 49, and 50, and since. There is greater force to turn out, than keep out. I have had ill luck. No man can say a Parliament is under force, but to a Parliament itself. It must be. put to the question whether this law is law. You will make a conclusion out of a proposition, and not affirm the proposition. If every man should speak it, yet, if not voted, it is not good. It is said, not pursued. It is a great deal more wisdom to submit than to inquire. Some have spoken of the great seal. I know not whether they believed themselves when they said so. It was a rhetorical expression. I suppose it may be verbal, but shall not now debate it. God's will has been done in taking — (fn. 39)

1. It is said by the grace of God, &c. he must be in. I will say to none of these; but I find him in. It is said he did not come in lawfully to be Protector; lawfully, or unlawfully, he came to be Protector. He did become, that is English. Recognize, or agnize, acknowledge, all one. Recognoscere no more, but severally to acknowledge. Huge force told of; but nobody says who did it; the soldiery I suppose. They did desire, indeed, that they might not be removed without their own consent. You did swear to obey the Protector, and yet you will not obey him. I cannot distinguish between myself as a burgess and as a Christian. I cannot distinguish myself out of my conscience. In the Covenant, we swore to God, not to the Scots. You gave me power to put my own interpretation. I would not have gone three strides back if I had thought of that interpretation. Myself and three more gentlemen had that privilege of interpretation. If a mutual stipulation, another thing. What had the Scots to do with the English church ?

I am afraid of delay. It will breed a great mischief; I desire you would pass the vote with limitations. A suspension is not a temporary denial. That objection is weighty, give by wholesale. You are but directing a Committee, not making a law. The objection is clearly mistaken.

Lord Lambert. There is a weighty business before you, of large extent, and of great concernment. The peace and settlement of three nations, meum and tuum, equal distribution of justice, are all concerned in the things before you.

I shall take leave to make some observations on the narratives that have been given you of transactions in these fourteen years. We have heard many relations of particular concerns, wherein, of things openly done, we have several differing opinions. Every man tells that part best which concerns himself most. I am afraid, if I tell you any thing of my own accounts, I shall fall into the same infirmity; but I shall only from this observe the baseness of man's nature. Let us wave any thing which may concern ourselves.

Many things have been disputed, whether this or that Parliament be good. One tells you, all sales of lands are void; (fn. 40) another tells you, another part is void. Many things have been said, but I think we all are guilty, even to our lives, if things should be scanned with the strictest justice.

Other things have been said more near the matter.

One proposition hath been made, as to Government itself, that it is all from God. We find it expressed so in Scripture, by that dream of Nebuchadnezzar. He was a great tyrant, with no reason but his will. After him, was another monarchy, with limitations, the monarchy of the Medes and Persians; then the Grecians; lastly, the Romans. All these governments were set up by God. Monarchy is the worst Government; yet, of that, God would not have them to recede from it. Some people are more fit to be governed by a tyrant, tban by themselves; (fn. 41) as, among others, the wild Irish, who provided in a treaty; that they should carry the vermin in their heads, and tie their horses' tails together. Some people, that are more discreet, are governed by a popular Government.

For the transactions these fourteen years, it is no matter whether the militia, negative voice, or delinquency, were the first occasion of the quarrel; or which had the van. It was certainly a complicated quarrel, under all the united prerogatives and exorbitances of an old monarchy, and the defence of the people to reduce it to its just limits. The prerogative began too great, and continued too great.

Therefore, it is not amiss to look back into the parties concerned, on both sides: what party was the King's; what were the Parliament's dependencies; and what engagements either side had to bring such great bodies for their defence into the field.

The King and Parliament were, as it were, the two great general heads of this difference. The universality of their quarrel engaged almost all the world on one side or the other; especially in England, Scotland, and Ireland, scarce a family but was divided. All had their angry divisions, and something of interest, too, bound up in this quarrel.

Now who. have been the assistants of these two great parties, and what have been the strength, the arguments, and the interest, that enabled these two parties to bring so many men into the field ?

For the King, it is plain that Papists, prelates, and delinquents, all such as had places or titles, pluralists of honour or profit, and generally all debauched people, (fn. 42) ran with that stream.

For the Parliament's party, an honest, sober, grave people, that groaned under oppressions, thirsted after grace, the reformed party of the nation, that owned their country's service, that had no by-ends, and expected no advantage from the King or from the court.

And these were the arguments and interests that brought the parties into the field:—

1. The Papist had his toleration, and prerogative was that strength and source from whence that was to proceed. He had a toleration for his person for the present, and for his religion, it was hopeful.

2. The Prelates, they had the advancement and the formalities, which all flowed from the same fountain. Preferment flowed readily on.

3. Dependence upon places of honour or profit, in pensions or expectancies, engaged many, and led a great way; but when I spoke of honour, I spoke of names, not things.

4. Debauched people expected liberty, or rather license, to exercise their lusts and villanies without control. If any cooling for a man's tongue, it was there. I hope the villanies that party daily acted shall never have encouragement from your chair.

This was universally true.

On the other side, there was only a sober, quiet, reformed people, generally thought, perhaps not universally so neither. I will not ask who had the justice of the cause. I will not judge it myself, when God himself seems to have determined the cause. I observed once, from a minister, that the Parliament had got the prayers of a fanatic people, which had got together an army, fit for God Almighty to do miracles withal.

In this great matter every man should lay aside self, relations, and persons, and study to have a Government so settled as may have strength, and a dependance upon the reformed interest and party of the nation. That it may not depend upon such supporters as the King had, nor give encouragement to that party that ran along with the Bang's Government. If that had taken its swing, where had we been?

No man sits here but he adviseth for posterity. Let us not lay a foundation again that may be subject to such exceptions. I do not fear that any man here would willingly advance those old ends, but I see alterations, even farther than ever I expected, not as concerning myself.

I fear not any desire or design to advance the Papists, but they are very busy and hopeful at this time.

So for prelacy, I think not any do design that. I hope there is no danger of Papists or prelates; yet I have seen a paper, a cloud as big as a man's hand, that may spread that way.

The best man is but a man at best. I have had great reason to know it. Therefore there ought to be a great deal of care even of the best man. Of your honours you ought to take as great care as ever.

The present militia differs very much from what it was before. A deputy-lieutenant in the county, or a captain, were rather things of honour than dependency.

Too much dependency upon the Chief Magistrates, will strive to come in here; and when it doth come, it will have its bias. I shall always speak ingenuously. It will not be fit to hide our diseases from you. I hope you will be careful to cure them.

The first thing laid hold on was, the bringing delinquents to punishment. Does not the same bone and quarrel of prerogative lie now before you, in that Bill, tied with a double cord ?

1. According to the Petition and Advice. I am not so well skilled, as to find much good or much ill in it.

2. According to the laws of the nation. It seems to be a mist over what you may challenge as your own due, the militia and the negative voice. To give from you, what was duly placed in you; after a possession to reject it, is worse than to lay a long claim to it, and never possess it. Consider them well, before you put them away.

There is objected unto us, dangers from abroad, great preparations made by the Dutch. Those things may be pressed too far. Danger from abroad is no argument; yet it ought to be some spur. The loss of time may be ill for the whole nation; so it may urge us to go on with what expedition conveniently may be.

As to the other House, I shall speak to that. It was heretofore frenum imperii, to restrain the extravagancies of the King in those elder times. To balance, was the good that naturally brought them in. They had great interest, and something of dominion. As to that which gave them any thing of interest, and, by consequence, power to protect the Commons of England, I have always approved very well of them; but as to that which gave them dominion, I like not that. In reference to the people, they have done many good offices.

They were heretofore frena imperii. They are now many of them good men indeed, and for some of them, I know, wherever their persons are, their hearts are here with us; their interest (I hope in the opinion of most of them) being more for the safety of this House, than of that where they do sit. Yet they have a negative upon all your proceedings, and may be debarred of their places of trust. Their interest is not so considerable, but they must always have a dependency upon the Chief Magistrate, and be forced to close in with him. Thus they will be rather stimula, than frena imperii. It is in yourselves chiefly to make such a settlement as may encourage a reformed interest, peace, and quiet.

Sir, it is confessed by all, that there is a Government in possession, and by law: but be it never so perfect a law, I am sure it is but an imperfect Government. Providence hath put a prize into your hands, that you may have the ordering of all, to be improved for the good of the whole.

Another flaw in the Government is, that the distributions and elections shall be as this power shall agree upon; another House, settled on another foundation than the Petition and Advice. So that you are now upon three foundations. The law you are upon, requires a King and a House of Lords. It is hard to serve a Government depending upon so many laws; so inconsistent. It will not be a perfect Government.

Upon the whole matter, I think the proper question before you is the commitment of this Bill. Now how shall you commit it ? Several particulars are offered to be added; to divide the question; to put in, according to the Petition and Advice; to be with such limitations, &c. This resolve will stand on your books, and it should not be entered without the equity that it ought to take along with it.

If I should speak in favour of the Protector, I would here say, make not that vote at all. I would have the vote be, that you will be ready to join with him against all that shall oppose the Government, and you will give a good testimony. Whatever you say to him, let the people's liberties be on the backside of the bond. Let them go hand-in-hand. Commit it to a Grand Committee.

Sir Lislebone Long. I will not go far back, as that noble lord. I agree with him in the facts, and his observations, but not that the consequence shall be the same, now that we are delivered into that condition wherein the people acquiesce in most things.

I shall not reflect upon any laws nor settlements that have been. This stands upon as good a bottom. There has been peace and tranquillity under this Government. The vote obliges not till the Bill be passed. That which Lord Lambert moved, did more oblige than the vote propounded. Do as much as you may, without concluding yourselves as to the Government that is a foot. You may debate it again.

Commines saith, after the death of the Duke of Burgundy, a Parliament met, and the debate about the Government lasted so long, that a common enemy (fn. 43) had got half the land. You cannot prevent this better, than by putting this question; but I would have it without limitations.

Mr. Reynolds. We came hither to make this a healing Parliament. You have spent three days upon it, and if you spend three days more, you will not repent it. I would, to prevent treason at home and abroad, make a vote before we rise, to acknowledge him to be Protector, in fact, and that you will assist him against all competitions.

Colonel Allured. I move to adjourn the debate till tomorrow.

Mr. Neville. It is against my business which is appointed to-morrow, but I will give up mine to the public. There is no question before you as yet, some time will be spent in wording the question.

Mr. St. Nicholas. I second the motion to adjourn.

Mr. Bodurda. The previous vote is the proper question.

Lord Lambert. The proper and natural vote is for commitment.

Mr. Attorney-general. The proper question is the previous vote; for you must direct your Committee. I would have the question stated.

Mr. Scot. There is not a word in the question but what is controverted, every iota. We are not ripe for any question. I hope provision is taken against your common enemy. Your Army are fixed against that interest, at least.

It was cried out he had spoke.

Colonel White. They ought not to cry out.

Lord Fairfax. I move that a vote pass for securing the peace, in the mean time; as Lord Lambert and Mr. Reynold's moved.

Sir Henry Vane. Let not that question intervene, till it also be debated in a Grand Committee.

Mr. Swinfen. The chair ought to keep us up to the things debated upon. The previous vote was first, and always moved as a direction to the Committee, be it grand or select. You ought to propose that first.

Mr. Speaker. I proposed if I should not, in the first place, put the question for commitment. Next, that the question, with the additions, should be put. It is hard to know your sense.

Lord Lambert. You are right. The proper question is for the commitment.

Mr. Solicitor-General. Every man agrees that it shall be committed. So that your proper question is the previous vote. The debate has been upon it, three days. If this House be in possession of the power, I wonder who is out of the possession. You are ready for a question. It is natural to put that question first.

Sir Henry Vane. I suppose you will have no Committee. If you pass this question, what do you leave for your Committee? This is begging the question. It is seldom but the House will trust itself. You need no preliminary vote. From a Grand Committee you refer it to yourself. This is not ingenuity; to surprise in this question. The whole depends upon the Recognition.

Sir William Wheeler. I would not have three days' debate lost; but propound the question, and let every man speak to the wording of it, as he pleases.

Serjeant Maynard. There is no rule that the question which is firsted and seconded shall be the question. Then it would be easy for two or three members to lead the whole House; but the question must be put upon what was debated.

Colonel Terrill. I move that the question be stated and propounded, before you put it.

Sir Arthur Haslerigge. The proper question is, that it be committed. You were exceedingly in the right, as you are always. You put us in that way. I believe other gentlemen have not spoken, and will speak yet. I see it is late. Three days have not been ill spent. This is not the way to your own safety, to sit so late. Peradventure, forty or fifty more would speak. I would have this debate adjourned till to-morrow.

Mr. Attorney-general. Will you have a Committee, to debate whether you will have a Protector or no ? Let the question be propounded. That were the most ingenuous.

Colonel White. I find many members remember the first, and not the last part of the oath. (fn. 44) I hope we shall remember all. I would have the question propounded, and adjourned till to-morrow.

Mr. Salway and Sir Arthur Haslerigge moved for the words "and not otherwise," to be added.

Mr. Neville. We agree him so, in fact, that he is Protector; but let us not say so: but that he shall be. This is a previous vote, and no part of the Bill.

Mr. Trevor. I move to propound the question, and to adjourn till to-morrow; and that the question be the subject of the debate.

Footnotes

1 "Sept. 25, 1658," says Whitlock, "several addresses came to the new Protector, declaring satisfaction in his succession, and resolution to adhere to him." Memorials (1732) p. 675. "Richard," says De Foe (see Biog. Brit. v. 63.) "had his addresses as well as his father, and in a far greater number; the custom prevailing more and more, daily." Among these was "an address from General Monk and his Officers in Scotland." This was followed, after the interval of a few months, by "a very long address" to the restored Long Parliament, "so full of cant and republican principles, that nobody could have imagined Monk had wit enough to have played the hypocrite so well;" for, "at the same time, Dr. Clarges, General Monk's brother-in-law, was negociating with him the King's return;" and "in a speech to that Parliament, even when his treaty with the King was agreed upon, Monk desired that no Cavalier might have any share of the civil and military power. "When Richard was to remove from his palace of Whitehall, and the household goods were packed up, the quondam Protector ordered his servants to be particularly careful of two old trunks which were deposited in his wardrobe. The men wondered why he was so solicitous, for their preservation, since, by their appearance, and the place they were put in, they did not seem to contain a treasure of such consequence; and one of his friends, hearing him enquire after them with much more concern than for any other part of the lumber, asked him what was in them that made him value them so much. 'Why, no less,' says Richard, 'than the lives and fortunes of all the good people of England.' It seems the addresses that had been presented him were thrown in there; and we all know it is a poor address that has not lives and fortunes in it." See "The History of Addresses. By one very near akin to the Author of the Tale of a Tub." (1709) pp. 6–10.
2 Blank in the MS.
3 "Some gentlemen of good affections to the Commonwealth." Journals.
4 See supra, p. 152.
5 See supra, p. 101, note.
6 See ibid. p. 111.
7 The late Bishop Watson has recorded an unfavourable opinion of republics given by George III. on the appearance, at Court, of the Venetian ambassador. It is not surprizing that a monarch, "served with adoration and kneeling," (as Sir Thomas Smith describes the "honour and reverence done to the prince,") could not discern the excellence of a republic. Yet the Bishop, lingering at Llandaff, though never "loth to depart," when he represented to royalty, that "a republic" was "one of the worst governments in the world," knew, as well as Dr. Robertson, that the republic of Venice was "a rigid and partial aristocracy, which lodges all power in the hands of a few members of the community, while it degrades and oppresses the rest;" and that there had been no proper republic prior to the American. See "Anecdotes of the Life of Bishop Watson, by himself," 8vo. i. 314. Mr. Thomas Cooper, on "Dr. Priestley's Political Works and Opinions," observes, that "America has begun upon the maxim that society is instituted not for the governors, but the governed; that the interest of the few shall, in all cases, give way to the many; and that entrusted authority shall be liable to frequent and periodical recals." He adds: "It is in America alone, that the sovereignty of the people is more than a mere theory. It is here that the characteristic of that theory is displayed in written constitutions. I throw out of consideration the ancient as well as the modern communities, ignorantly called republics. There has been no republic, ancient or modern, until the American." See "Memoirs of Dr. Joseph Priestley," (1806) p. 357.
8 See supra, p. 142.
9 If this speaker be here correctly reported, it is difficult to understand what he means by such a limitation of "the negative voice." It would leave a very scanty prerogative to "the Chief Magistrate." See vol. it. p. 451, note §.
10 The Petition and Advice.
11 Bee vol. i. p. 262, note ‡.
12 See vol. ii. p. 141, note.
13 See vol. i. p. 378.
14 See supra, p. 153, note. The following statement is by a contemporary, an undisguised and virulent impugner of every power in ppssessipn during the interregnum. "Richard Cromwell ascends the throne, being but a private gentleman of Hampshire, invited thereunto and encouraged by Fleetwood, Desbrow, Sydenham, the two Joness, Thurloe and others, the relations and confidants of his father. His first work is to take care for his faf ther's funeral: which solemnity past, by the contrivance of the new courtiers, congratulations are sent (prepared at Whitehall) from most of the counties, cities, and chief towns of England, Scotland, and Ireland, with engagements to live and die with him: addresses from the independent churches, by Mr. Goodwin [see supra, p. 1,] and Nye, their metropolitans; and he was, indeed, worshipped by many as the rising sun in our horizon." See "The History of Independency, the fourth and last part. By T. M. Esquire, a Lover of his King and Country." (1660) p. 32. T. M., like the worshippers of Richard's short-lived ascendancy, also discovered a luminary in a prince at whose birth, according to Perinchief, "Heaven was liberal, kindling another fire more than ordinary, making a star to be seen the same day at noon." On this tale thus sings the servile, and here (as if his genius were debased by his subject) the unusually prosaic Muse of Waller:— "His thoughts rise higher, when he does reflect On what the world may from that star expect, Which at his birth appeared, to let us see Day for his sake could with the night agree." T. M. says to his "most dread Soveraign," while venturing "to intrude" into his presence, "I know so great a sun will quickly dazzle my weak eyes;" and he proceeds "to pray" for him "the age of Methuselah." But the previous page may be worthy of quotation, as a royal curiosity, preserved in a book now no longer very common:— "To the sacred Majesty of Great Britain's Monarch, (the triumphant son of a most glorious father, who was, in all things, more than Conqueror) the illustrious offspring of a royal train of antient princes, Charles, the second of that name, intituled Prous, by the sole providence of an Almighty hand, of England, Scotland, France, and Ireland, King, Defender of the Faith; Restorer of the English Church unto its pristine state and glory; Patron of law and liberty; not to be seconded by any but himself, who is the best of kings, and of all vertue to the world the Grand Exemplar." T. M. was soon worthily followed by Waller, Dryden, Spratt, and others, in the style of adulation which they had cultivated by complimentary addresses to the Protectoral House of Cromwell. But there is one extraordinary passage addressed by an Academic to the restored Stuart at the close of his reign, when his character was no longer the subject of expectation, but had become the theme of history. I refer to an "Epistle Dedicatory" to Archbishop Sancroft, prefixed to "Plutarch's Morals," in 1684, by "Mr. Morgan, of St. John's College in Oxford," one of the learned translators. On the royal appointment of the Archbishop (of which see supra, p. 67,) the dedicator thus pourtrays the character of Charles II:— "A wise and discerning prince, who hath the quickest eye to find out a transcendent worth, and the most generous temper to reward it; a prince who hath the goodness of Trajan's and the wit of all Augustus his reign: the image of the Deity is so closely impressed upon him, that the idea comes very near the original!" To the apotheosis immediately succeeds a bathos, "and the accomplishments of body and mind, make him the best and most agreeable of mankind."
15 "The book" to which this speaker refers, was probably the Diurnal, whose diligent periodical catering for the intellectual palates of his readers, he had just commended. There was another book, now before me, of this date, which appears to have attracted censure, even "when lying in its first bed, and loose sheets in the print-house." It is entitled, "Historie and Policie Reviewed, in the Heroic Transactions of his most serene Highness, Oliver, late Lord Protector; from his cradle to his tomb; declaring his steps to princely perfection, as they are drawn in lively parallels to the ascents of the great Patriarch Moses, in thirty degrees to the height of honour. By H. D. Esq." H. Dawbeny had "been conversant in the courts of some great princes, and particularly known to many of their persons." Yet, so far from having incurred "the imputation of flattery," which he "ever abhorred," he had "been always most severely taxt of too much of the other extreme." Of this "little history," he modestly declares, that, "to give it the due dresse and ornament of language, would have required no less than the pen of a seraphim." This history, he now dedicates "To the most serene Highness of Richard, by the grace of God, Lord Protector; Chara Dei soboles, magnum Jovis incrementum," which, "though it be a piece of an Æneid," and "some will think of flattery, yet it is very manifestly" his "most serene Highness his birth-right, and plain prophetic truth." In the same style of verity, he thus proceeds:— "Your most serene Highnesse is known to hold so much of the vertue of your most renowned father in you, as to be better pleased to meet with an enemy in open field, than a flattering friend in your Privy Chamber, insomuch that I am afraid to tell your Highnesse some no torious truths; how all we, your people, look upon you as our second Joshua, in the place of our second Moses, as full of the spirit of wisdom, courage, and piety, as he was: and that we cannot at all doubt but your successes will be likewise most proportionable to his; how walls and cities shall fall before you, gyants wax pale, rivers retire back, the sun itself stand still, and as many kings will undergoe your yoke. "I am afraid to tell you, Sir, how we, that are your people, are all of us employ'd in planting more bayes and laurel in our gardens, to engarland your victorious browes, before you come to a battle. In fine, I am afraid to tell you, how all our hearts, like roses withered upon the death of your glorious father, now begin again to bloom afresh, and newly to open ourselves at the benigne, gentle, and glorious princely aspect of your most serene Highnesse." Historie and Policie. (1659.) See "The Epistle Dedicatory."
16 See supra, pp. 63, 64, note, 111, 112.
17 "He got a captain's commission from the Commons, and immediately raised a troop of horse in his own county. They consisted of select men, whose bravery he proved by the following stratagem. He placed about twelve of them in an ambuscade, near one of the King's garrisons, who, advancing furiously towards the body, as if they had been of the enemy's party, put some of their raw companions to the flight. These he immediately cashiered, and filled their places with others of more courage." See "A Short Critical Review of the Life of Oliver Cromwell," (1747,) p. 20. "Hi autem initio," says Dr. Bates, "nec anna tractandi, nec equos guari, diligentiâ solertiâque bellatores acerrimi evascerunt; equis etenim curandis, nutriendis ac detergendis indies assuefacti sunt, et, si opus foret, simul humicubando; anna insuper polire, nitida et usui expedita servare, ioricas optimas induere, séque cætero armaturæ genere communire condocefecerat eos Cromwellius." Elenchus, (1676,) part ii. p. 332. (They were, at first, unskilful in handling their arms or managing their horses; yet, by industry and attention they at length became excellent soldiers. Cromwell accustomed them daily to look after, feed, and dress their horses, and when needful, to lie with them on the ground. He also taught them to preserve their arms clean and polished, to choose the best accoutrements, and in every respect to be armed to the most advantage.)
18 "In a letter dated "Whitehall, February 11, 1657–8," the under-Secretary Moreland thus writes to Mr. Fell, the Resident at Zurich:— "This morning, his Highness took away the commissions from Major-General Packer, and divers of his officers, for having had a finger in the pye, and endeavouring to make a confusion in the army, and to corrupt it." Lansdowne MSS. 755, No. 38.
19 See supra, p. 104, note. "1655. Friday, ay 18. This day, Serjeant Maynard, Serjeant Twysden, and Mr. Wadham Windham, were committed to the Tower, by order from his Highnesse and Councel, upon the account of Mr: George Coney, Merchant, for whom they were of councel, and had moved on Thursday for a habeas corpus for him, who stands committed to the Serjeant-at-Arms, for refusing to pay custom and excise, according to an ordinance set forth by his Highnesse, with the advice and consent of his Councel. The business was again moved in the Upper Bench Court, on Saturday, but not determined: the further consideration thereof, appointed to be on Wednesday next, in the Upper Bench. "Wednesday, May 23. Mr. Coney appeared, at the Upper Bench barre. Hee said, hee could not engage any to bee counsel for him. Mr. Moore said hee offered to bee counsel for him, but hee would not give him his fee. Mr. Coney said, none but a madman would be of his counsel. Hee had liberty to plead for himself; but his return was found defective. The word To, (whereby it should have been directed to Oliver Lord Protector) was left out. He remains still prisoner, and hath liberty to renue the businesse." See." Perfect Proceedings of State Affairs," (1655,) No. 295.
20 See supra, p. 131.
21 The first standing army was raised in 1445, by Charles VII. of France. Soon after, "mercenary troops were introduced into all the considerable kingdoms of the Continent. It has long," says Dr. Robertson, "been the great aim of princes and ministers to discredit and to annihilate all other means of national activity or defence." Charles V. (1777,) i 113. See Henault.
22 See supra, p. 4.
23 See vol. i. p. 406.
24 "A statute, 25 Edw. I., commonly called de Tallagio nan concedendo." The king declares: "No tallage or aid shall be taken or levied, by us or our heirs in our realm, without the good will and assent of Archbishops, Bishops, Earls, Barons, Knights, Burgesses, and other freemen of the land. "The word tallage, [or taille] is derived from tailler, to share or cut out a part, and is metaphorically used for any charge, when the king or any other does cut out, or take away, any part or share out of a man's estate. "My Lord Coke (2 Inst.) tells us that the year before this statute was made, the king had taken a tallage of all cities and boroughs, without assent of Parliament; whereupon arose a great murmuring and discontent amongst the Commons." English Liberties (1719), pp. 64, 67, 73.
25 Given at large, Ibid, pp. 180–185. See vol. ii. p. 137, note*, Rushworth, (1703), i. 373, 376, 391. "The last great act of Sir Edward Coke's life," says Mr. Godwin, "was the framing the Petition of Right, which was endued with the form of a law, in the Parliament of 1628. The purpose of this measure was to forbid the imposing any gift, loan, benevolence, or tax, to the king, without the authority of Parliament; to declare that no subject shall be detained in prison, without having the power to claim his deliverance by due course of law; to abolish the arbitrary billeting of soldiers; and to condemn the proceeding against any of the subjects of the realm by martial law, during a time of peace. Sir Edward Coke was fourscore years of age at the time of passing this law." Commonwealth, (1824) i. 9.
26 In this speech, as well as that by Major-general Packer, are numerous corrections and additions from the Goddard MS.
27 See supra, p. 169.
28 See vol. ii. p. 323, note.
29 See vol. ii. pp. 384, 387, notes *.
30 See vol. ii. pp. 387, 434, notes*.
31 In a paper left by Sir Henry Vane, containing "the substance of what he pleaded on the day of his trial," which I have before me, "printed in the year 1662," immediately after his execution, there is an account of his conduct at this period. Having referred to the time when that "great violation of privileges happened to the Parliament," (see vol. ii. p. 387, note) he adds:— "This made me forbear to come to the Parliament for the space of ten weeks, (to wit, from the 3rd of December, 1648, till towards the middle of February, following,) or to meddle in any public transactions. And during that time, the matter most obvious to exception, in way of alteration of the Government did happen. I can, therefore, truly say, that as I had neither consent nor vote at first, in the resolutions of the Houses, concerning the non-addresses to his late Majesty, so neither had I, in the least, any consent or approbation to his death. But, on the contrary, when required by the Parliament to take an oath to give my approbation, ex post facto, to what was done, I utterly refused, and would not accept of sitting in the Council of State upon those terms, but occasioned a new oath to be drawn, wherein that was omitted. "In like manner, the resolutions and votes for changing the Government into a Commonwealth, or Free-state, were passed some weeks before my return to Parliament. Yet, afterwards, I conceived it my duty, as the state of things did then appear to me, to keep my station in Parliament. "This I did upon a public account, not daring to quit my station in Parliament by virtue of my first writ. Nor was it for any private or gainful ends, to profit myself or enrich my relations. This may appear, as well by the great debt I have contracted, as by the destitute condition my many children are in as to any provision made for them. And I do publicly challenge all persons whatsoever, that can give information of any bribes or covert ways, used by me during the whole time of my public acting." Yet, though the Commons had petitioned for the life of Sir Henry Vane, as not concerned in the trial and execution of Charles, and the King had granted the prayer of their petition, and notwithstanding the notoriety of the fact, the prosecutor for the crown commenced his legal proceedings by producing the following evidences, of whose credibility "The warrant of the 30th of January, 48–9, was proved to be the hand of Sir Henry Vane, by Thomas Lewis and Thomas Turner, as they believe, neither of them affirming that they saw him write it, but knowing his hand, believed it to be so." The "King's Attorney-General" was "Sir Geoffrey Palmer," the learned leader of "Sir John Glynn," and of Sir Henry Vane's colleague in this Parliament, "Sir John Maynard," who were now among "the King's Counsel against the prisoner; [see vol. ii. p. 461, note,] no counsel being permitted to speak one word in his behalf, to the matter or form of the indictment, or any thing else." See "The Tryal of Sir Henry Vane, Knight, at the King's Bench, Westminster. Together with what he intended to have spoken, the day of his sentence, for arrest of judgment, (had he not been interrupted and overruled by the Court,) and his Bill of Exceptions. Also his speech and prayer, &c. on the scaffold." pp. 27, 46, 74, 96; State Trials, (1774,) ii. 441, 448, 459. Among the specimens of professional versatility exhibited at the English bar, I know not one more complete than the appearance of Glynn and Maynard, as Crown Prosecutors of Sir Henry Vane, before judges who had freely acted under, and thus had unequivocally sanctioned, the powers in possession during the interregnum. To these circumstances should be added, the now well-understood corrupt influence, (such as the counsel tampering with juries, &c.) exerted on that occasion. The whole transaction well exemplifies "the Complaint of Conscience," in an earlier century, which Bishop Percy brought from an old MS. into his "Relics of Antient English Poetry," (1794,) ii. 289. The author of this "allegoric satire," is severe upon the lawyers of his time; and not unjustly, if barristers would then lend their learning and eloquence to advocate any cause; either to shield the accused from the rigour of sanguinary laws, or to invoke their penalties on his head, with no conscientious discriminination, but just as they happened to have received a retainer. Conscience, in quest of a patron, wanders through the metropolis to "the Court of Conscience," probably the Court of Chancery. There, he says, "Though the judge us'd my name in everye commission, The lawyers with their quillets wold get my dismission." He now proceeds further among the Glynns and Maynards, and thus relates the result of his experiment:— "Then Westminster-hall was noe place for me; Good Lord! how the lawyers began to assemble, And fearful they were, lest there I should bee! he does not insinuate the smallest diffidence:— The silly poore darkes began for to tremble; I show'd them my cause, and did not dissemble: Soe they gave me some money my charges to beare, But swore me on a booke I must never come there."
32 See supra, p. 110, note||.
33 Under the administration of the celebrated family of Dewit. The Prince of Orange, afterwards William III., was now a minor, having been born a few days after his father's decease, in 1650. "His grandmother, a lady of masculine courage, who suffered with impatience the eclipse of the House of Orange, which she had beheld in its brightest splendour, was not a little industrious to awaken the dependants and favourers of the Nassovian grandeur." These she taught to regard themselves as "contemned and slighted," and "their reputation lost," while "all the employments of the Commonwealth were bestowed upon the sons of burgomasters." At. length, in 1672, there was a deputation "in the name of the States to invest his Highness in the ancient dignities formerly belonging to his ancestors." See "The History of William, Prince of Orange," (1689,) pp. 62, 54.
34 See vol. ii. p. 214, note*.
35 John Mariana, a very learned Jesuit, who died at Toledo in 1624, aged eighty-seven. There he had published, in 1599, a treatise, De Rege et Regis Institutions. Mariana, according to his biographer," ose soutenir dans cet ouvrage qu'il eat permis de se defaire d'un tyran, et il y admire l'action detestable de Jaques Clement." The Parliament of Paris, unable to reach the author of the book, and not satisfied with the censure of the Sorbonne, and the disapproval of the Jesuit's superiors, resorted to a sentence de combarendo, one of the rationes ultimœ regum, who, according to Milton, "though strong in legions, are but weak at arguments." "II fût condamné par le Parliament de Paris À être brûté par la main du bourreau, censuré par la Sorbonne, et déapprouvé par ses supé, rieurs." See Nouv. Dict. Hist. (1789) v. 606.
36 An assertion as complaisant to the memory of Charles, as it is at variance with the history of his reign. (See especially the King's ponduct in the case of Buckingham, voL ii. p. 382, note). The learned Serjeant, who would, probably, have written the history of the Stuarts with the integrity of Hume, might think it prudent, perhaps in the hearing of the royal spies who sat in this Parliament, thus to provide for an admission to favour, on the not improbable return of the legitimate race, an event likely to be accelerated by the precarious condition of Richard's power, and these endless debates concerning the manner of his elevation. On Glynn and Maynard (supra, p. 175) I ought to have added that the prosecution in which they engaged their professional assistance, appears to have been regarded, even by devoted Royalists, as a base and indefensible transaction. Lord Clarendon, to whom Charles had dictated his royal pleasure (see vol. ii. p.184, note,) for the destruction of that inflexible patriot; avoids the subject in his Continuation, and Parker, the time-serving Bishop of Oxford, though he unscrupulously accommodates other facts to his purpose, in the "History of his Own Time," does not venture to mention the case of Sir Henry Vane.
37 The following extracts from Rushworth refer to this period. The intermediate passage may serve to show how various were the engagements of the Long Parliament, and how absurdly they encumbered themselves with a cure of souls amidst arduous occupations on the most important civil interests. There is, indeed, sufficient evidence, though not always fairly admitted, that Protestants have been ready as Catholics to burn books, or the authors of them, according to the extent of their power, or the spirit of their times:— "1647, Sept. 3. Upon debate it was ordered that summonses from the Commons should be made out for Mr. D. Hollis, Sir W. Waller, Sir J. Clotworthy, Major-general Massey, Colonel Walter Long, and Mr. Antony Nichols, to attend the House, to answer things objected against them. As also, that Mr. Glyn, Recorder of London, [Baronet, not the Lawyer] and Sir John Maynard, attend in like manner. "Sept. 6. A report was made to the House about a pamphlet lately printed, of one Mr. John Biddle's, [See supra, p. 118, note] being twelve arguments against the deity of the Holy Ghost. Upon debate it was ordered, that it be called in, and burnt by the hangman, (which was done the day following,) and that Mr. Biddle be referred to the examination of the Committee for plundered ministers. "The Commons proceeded to the case of Sir John Maynard, who was accused upon oath, that he had with great zeal endeavoured a new war, having subscribed warrants for raising of horse within the City, &c. Being called in, and heard, it was voted that he be discharged from being any longer a member, and committed to the Tower: and that an impeachment of high-treason be drawn up against him." Hist. Col. (1708) vi. 259, 261. "Feb. 5, 1647–8. The peers proceeded to judgment on Sir John Maynard, one of the eleven members, who appealed from them (as not being tried per pares) saying their lordships were no competent judges of him, and pleaded likewise, for this purpose, Magna Charta. Their lordships took the judgment of the judges in point of law; and ordered that Sir John be remanded to the Tower, be fined 500l.) have sixteen days to give in his answer, and his trial to proceed before the Lords, on the impeachment of the Commons, according to former order." Ibid, p. 338. See Whitlock, pp. 268, 292; Hollis's Memoirs in Maseres's Tracts, pp. 256, 302. Rushworth reports, at this tune, "Feb. 6, a letter from the Hague," which says, "Here seems a kind of fatality upon the counsels and person of your King. This last restraint, with the votes, has astonished the royal party here, which is not small. They cannot tell which way to steer. They look on Scotland, they look on France; but say, there must be money; and if that were had, it were no wonder to see 10,000 merry souls,—who, at present, lie here, and curse you in every cup they drink,—run over, and venture one cast more for the crown." Hist. Col. vi. 340.
38 The Petition and Advice.
39 Some words omitted in the MS.
40 See "Serjeant Maynard," supra, p. 184.
41 See Bishop Burnet," we won't be governed by one another." Vol. ii. p. 417: and on such government, supra, p. 157, note.
42 See Robert Boyle's opinion, in Dr. Birch's Life (1744), p. 50. Lord Clarendon praises the "chief commanders of the Cornish army" of the King for having "restrained their soldiers from all manner of licence, obliging them to frequent acts of devotion." Yet he afterwards charges "the remains of the western army" with being "dissolute, undisciplined, and wicked;" and the horse, especially, as "being only terrible in plunder, and resolute in running away; whom their friends feared, and their enemies laughed at." History (1712), ii. 276, 725. In another place, Lord Clarendon admits that "Cromwell had been most strict and severe in the forming the manners of his army, and in chastising all irregularities; insomuch, that sure there was never any such body of men so without rapine, swearing, drinking, or any other debauchery." He excepts, indeed, "the wickedness of their hearts," but they were anti-royalists, and Lord Clarendon was a royal courtier." Continuation (1759), 11. 40.
43 Whose "treacherous baseness, amazing even in the History of Louis XI.," Dr. Robertson, (Charles V. i. s. 2.,) has exposed from Commines. Henault thus describes the royal progress, (in 1477,) and the ingenious fraus pia, to secure a possession, by becoming a vassal of the Holy Virgin:— "Le Roi, qui le premier avoit établi l'usage des postes, jusqu'alors inconnu en France, par un édit de 1464, est bientôt informé de cet évenement, et en profite pour reprendre plusieurs villes en Picardie, en Artois, et en Bourgogne. Il s'empare aussi du Comté de Boulogne, relevant de 1'Artois, en donnant une indemnité a Bertrand de la Tour, Comte de Boulogne, et pour éteindre la suzeraineté, il la conféra de son autorité À la Sainte Vierge, qui se nomma Notre-Dame de Boulogne, afinque, quoi qu'il arrivât de l'Artois, il ne put jamais avoir le Comté de Boulogne dans sa mouvance." Abrége Chron. (1789,) ii. 407.
44 "The preservation of the rights and liberties of the people." See vol. ii. p. 297, note.