Die Mercurii, Decembris 4, 1644.
Col. Butler, &c.
ORDERED, That To-morrow Mr. Tate do make Report of the Business concerning Col. Butler and Quarter-master General Dalbier, the first Business.
Leave of Absence.
Ordered, That Mr. Cage shall have the Liberty of this House to go into the Country.
Protestation of Secrecy by Committee.
Ordered, That the Debate of this Business, concerning the continuing the Protestation of Secrecy upon the Committee where Mr. Tate has the Chair (to whom is referred the Examination of the Narrative made by Sir Wm. Waller and Lieutenant General Cromwell), be forthwith resumed.
The House being informed, that divers Divines of the Assembly were at the Door;
They were called in; and did present the humble Advice of the Assembly of Divines concerning the Solemnization of Marriage.
They did likewise desire, that some Course may be taken, by some good Law, to prevent the Inconveniences that may happen to the Church and Commonwealth, by clandestine, forced, and stolen Marriages; and the Marriages of Children, without the Consent of their Parents; and by Parents unjustly forcing their Children to Marriages against their own Consents.
Protestation of Secrecy by Committee.
Resolved, &c. That the Protestation of Secrecy shall be continued upon the Committee where Mr. Tate has the Chair (to whom is referred the Examination of the Narrative made by Sir Wm. Waller and Lieutenant General Cromwell), as to the Business of that whole Narrative.
Resolved, &c. That all Orders, that give Power to fewer than eight of this Committee to act, shall be revoked.
Ordered, That To-morrow Morning, the first Business, Sir Hen. Vane junior do make Report of the Papers referred concerning the Scotts Army.
Ordered, That To-morrow Morning the Report be made concerning Monies for Oxfordshire, &c.
Ordered, That To-morrow Morning the humble Advice of the Assembly of Divines, concerning the Solemnization of Marriage, be read.
Ordered, That the Order of Novembris 26, made for raising of Six thousand Pounds by Loan, from the Commissioners of Excise, for furnishing the publick Stores with Powder and Ammunition, as to the Days of Payment, be altered and amended.
Mr. Holles reports the Conference had with the Lords the other Day:
That the Lord North did there read, in Writing, the Relation made by the Earl of Manchester, concerning the Business of Dunnington. And, after the Reading thereof, the Lord Wharton read another Paper, in nature of a Charge, against Lieutenant General Cromwell, presented to their House by the Earl of Manchester: And said further, that, in regard it concerned a Member of this House, the Lords would not proceed therein, till they had first communicated it to this House. And, for the First Business concerning Dunnington, the Lord Gray said, The Lords had nominated a Committee of Seven, and desired this House to appoint a proportionable Number, to examine that Business.
Message from Lords.
A Message from the Lords, by Sir Edw. Leech and Doctor Aylett;
The Lords have commanded us to acquaint this House, That the States Ambassadors have lately desired a Pass from my Lord General to go to the King, with a Purpose, as they intimate unto his Lordship, not to return again hither: The Lords think it may sound ill to the World, if they should go away with so much Unsatisfaction, as not to receive an Answer unto their Desires: The Lords do therefore desire the Concurrence of the House of Commons unto That Answer, which was prepared by the Committee of both Houses appointed to treat with the said Ambassadors, and hath been agreed unto by their Lordships.
They have likewise received a Letter from the French Resident, touching his Desire of Audience; which they have thought fit to communicate to this House: And desire, that the Committee formerly appointed for this Business may meet this Afternoon, to take it into Consideration.
Dr. Eden, Mr. Selden, Mr. Reynolds, Mr. Holles, Sir Dudley North, Mr. Whittaker, Mr. Whitelock, Sir Wm. Strickland, Sir Hen. Vane junior.
This Committee, or any Three of them, are to consider of the Answer, sent down from the Lords, to be given to the States Ambassadors, touching their Offer of Interposition: And are to meet this Afternoon, at Two of Clock, in the Duchy Chamber; and are to bring in a Report To-morrow Morning peremptorily.
Answer to Lords.
Answer returned by the same Messengers; That this House has considered their Lordships Message; and, as to the Answer to be given to the States Ambassadors, they will send an Answer very speedily, by Messengers of their own: And, as to the Letter from the French Resident, they have appointed the Committee to meet, as is desired.
Ordered, That it be referred to this Committee following, to consider, whether the Privilege of this House be broken by the Matter of this Report made by Mr. Holles; and to present to the House some Expedient for the putting the same into a Way of Examination:
Mr. Prideaux, Mr. Browne, Mr. Solicitor, Sir John Clotworthy, Sir Wm. Strickland, Sir H. Vane, Sir Walter Erle, Mr. Maynard, Mr. Crew, Mr. Whitelock, Mr. Reynolds, Sir Arthur Hasilrig, Serjeant Wilde, Mr. Lisle, Mr. Hollis, Mr. Hill, Sir Tho. Widdrington, Mr. Peirpointe: And are to meet To-morrow, at Two post Meridiem, in the Exchequer Chamber: And have Power to send for Papers, Records, &c.
Narrative by Waller and Cromwell.
The Question being put, Whether the House would give Leave to any of the Members to speak against the Order to the Committee for taking the Narrative made by Sir Wm. Waller, and Lieutenant General Cromwell into Consideration, and to make a speedy Report;
It passed with the Negative.
Affairs at Reading.
A Letter from Reading, of 3 Decembris, from the Commissioners of my Lord General's Army; and a Petition from the Mayor and Assistants of Reading, complaining of the great Insolencies of the common Soldier, and the Want of Officers and Courts Martial to repress them, were this Day read: And Sir Philip Stapilton and Mr. Whitelock are appointed by this House to acquaint my Lord General with this Letter and Petition; and to desire his Excellency to take some effectual Course for the Redress of these Evils.
Ordered, That the Business concerning the Insolencies of the Soldiery of the Garison at Reading, and their Wants, be taken into Consideration To-morrow Morning.
A Letter from the Committee at Nottingham, directed to the Committee of both Kingdoms, and thence reported by Mr. Browne, relating some good Success a Party of theirs had in beating up the Enemy's Quarters at Muschamp, within a Mile of Newark; and taking of Eighty Horse, Two Colours, and some Officers; was this Day read.
Letters to be read.
Ordered, That the Letters from Newcastle be read To-morrow Morning.