Historical Collections of Private Passages of State: Volume 4, 1640-42. Originally published by D Browne, London, 1721.
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Of Sir Jo. Hotham's denying the King's Entrance into Hull, and the several Papers relating thereunto.
The Town of Hull was at first a poor Country Hamlet, consisting of a few straggling Cottages, called by the name of Wike; the Inhabitants lived by Fishing, it being commodiously situated hard by two Rivers, Humber and Hull, for that kind of Trade.
In process of time the Inhabitants, as they advanced their Estates, so they bettered their Dwellings, and reduced it into the form of a Town, and by degrees converting their Fisher-Boats into Merchant-Ships, it became a Port-Town, and a Place of Merchandize, by which new Trade it increased in Riches and Pomp.
After this it was endowed with many Privileges by several Kings, and in further Favour it was called Kingston upon Hull, and made a Corporation, with a County annexed to it, at the first governed by Bailiffs, afterwards, and still by a Mayor and twelve Aldermen; at length they obtained Favour of the King, that the Town might be walled and trenched about, which was done at their own Costs; they made them Four Ports or Gates, viz. Hasell Gate, Miton Gate, Beverly Gate, and North Gate.
After this, King Henry the Eighth, being informed of the natural strength of the Town, by reason of the commodious situation thereof in an Angle, having Humber on the South-side, and Hull on the East, in his Progress into these Northern Parts, turned aside to see the Place, where (for the better security of the Country from Foreign Invasion) he erected two Block-houses on the other side of the River Hull, one over-against the South end of the Town, hard by the mouth of Hull, which commands the River of Humber, the other over-against the North end, which secures from the Land; and in the mid-way betwixt these he founded a very strong Castle, which commands both the River and the Land. They are so seated, that they can clear one another with their Ordnance from an Enemies Assault, being all well fortified with Guns; from each of these to the other he reared a Wall eight yards high, and five yards thick of black Stone strongly cemented, the Walls of the Block-houses and Castle being of the same matter and thickness.
The King took such pleasure in the Town and Country adjoyning, which was convenient for his Game, that he was a while resident here, and kept his Court in a large and sumptuous House, called the Mannour, now the Repository of Arms, or Magazine for the Kingdom's Use.
Moreover, for the better fortification of the Town, the Inhabitants built a Fort at the South end, which is very well furnished with Iron Guns, and one brass Basilisco 17 Foot long, her weight 7000 l. which at the beginning of the latter Siege was carried to the Walls, which are singularly well fortified with Brass and Iron Guns, both Culverins and Demi-Cannon-Cuts; before the Walls is the Town-Ditch, both broad and deep, over which lie three Draw-Bridges, viz. at Miton, Beverley, and North Gates, and before each Gate is either a Hornwork, a Half-Moon, or a Battery, and from one to another round about the Walls to both the Rivers, was made in Sir John Hotham 's time, a Breast-work for Musqueteers, with a deep Trench before it, over which lie two Draw-Bridges, to wit, at Beverley and North Gates, the other two Gates are ramm'd up with Earth.
But that which adds further to the strength of the Town, are the Meadows and Moorish Grounds on every side of the Town, and Block-houses, which may for the space of two miles be so overflown with Salt-water by cutting the Banks at the Spring-tides, that an Enemy cannot make any near approach, (much less undermine) but by the Banks of the Rivers, except some few Meadows, one on the West side by Humber Banks, that lie so high, they cannot be drowned, there was therefore a Fort-Royal made on that quarter, about twenty score from the Walls, to prevent an approach, which after the Lord Fairfax came thither, was finished and fortified with Ordnance.
This Town thus situated, was by the State-Politicians deemed the fittest Place in the Northern Parts, for the Kingdom's Magazine in the Expedition against the Scots. There was therefore sent hither great store of Ammunition, and Arms for about thirty thousand Men both Horse and Foot, all which were in the managing of Captain Leg, and his Assigns; and for the future security thereof, as also of the Castle, Forts, and Block-houses, here was planted by the Earl of Strafford a Garrison of a 1000 Soldiers, under the Command of Sir Thomas Glemham, who continued here almost a year after the pacification betwixt his Majesty and the Scots, until they were dismissed and disbanded by the Parliament, and then Magazine, Castle, Block-houses, and other Forts were committed to the Care of the Townsmen, whose care in Watching and Warding was answerable to their trust.
Afterwards it was thought fit to secure this Town and the Magazine; whereupon the Earl of Newcastle was forthwith addressed with Letters in his Majestey's name, full of Clemency to the Townsmen, thereby commanding and requiring, That the Keys of the Ports, Magazine, and Block-houses, might be instantly deliver'd to the said Earl, who, as it seemed, suspecting what the sequel of that errand might be, desired to pass unknown, calling himself Sir John Savage, and at his first coming was brought before the Mayor, under that name, till being known by some By-standers, he was forc'd to own both his Name and his Errand: But the Mayor, Aldermen, and Townsmen, perceiving an estrangement betwixt the King and his Parliament, and the ground thereof, and knowing the Parliament's Resolution, to establish the Government of that Town in the Hands of Sir John Hotham, demurred upon the business a few days, untill a Letter came from the Parliament to command them to receive Mr. Hotham; hereupon the Townsmen resolved upon a Petition to be sent to his Majesty, 'Humbly beseeching that his Majesty would be pleased ' to agree with his Parliament, concerning that business, that so without Breach of Fealty, or incurring the displeasure of either, they might know in whose hands to entrust the Strength of the Kingdom, together with their own Lives and Estates.' At the same instant was Captain Leg also come into the Town, and a strong party be stirred themselves for the Earl, with great expectation of the King's Royal Favour towards the Town thereby, and much Honour and Credit in the Entertainment of so honourable a Personage before a private Gentleman. In the mean while the other party were incessant in their endeavours for the Choice of the other, according to the Order of Parliament, and took care to inform the Parliament concerning the carriage of the Business; the House of Lords immediately sent a Summons for the Earl and Captain Leg to attend them at Westminster, who departed the Town, and gave over their Claim; the day before came a second Letter from his Majesty, requiring either to receive the Earl, as Governour, or to keep the Town in their own Hands, and the Mayor to be sole Governour.
But the same day that the Earl departed, Mr. Hotham was freely received into the Town, with three Companies of Train'd-Bands, and the Keys of the Ports and the Magazine were surrender'd into his Hands.
Within a few Weeks, Sir John Hotham (sent down from the Parliament) betook him to his Charge, and dismissed his Son, drawing more Companies of the Train'd-Bands of Yorkshire into the Garrison, until they amounted to the number of about 800.
The Breaches between the King and his Parliament growing wider, the two Houses Petition his Majesty for leave to remove the Magazine there, to the Tower of London, and at the same time several Gentlemen of Yorkshire Petition that it may not be removed, as followeth:
The Humble Petition of the Lords and Common to the King, for leave to remove the Magazine of Hull to the Tower of London; and also to take off the Reprieve of the Six Condemned Priests, now in Newgate.
Most Gracious Sovereign,
Your most Dutiful and Loyal Subjects, the Lords and Commons in Parliament Assembled (finding the Stores of Arms and Ammunition in the Tower of London much diminished, and that the necessity of supplies for your Majesty's Kingdom of Ireland (for which they have been issued from thence) daily increaseth; and that the occasion for which the Magazine was placed at Hull is now taken away; and considering it will be kept here with less Charge, and more Safety, and transported hence with much more convenience for the service of the Kingdom of Ireland;
They therefore humbly Pray, that your Majesty will be graciously pleased to give leave, that the said Arms, Cannon, and Ammunition, now in the Magazine at Hull, may be removed to the Tower of London, according as shall be directed by both your Houses of Parliament.
'We rather expected (and have done so long) that you should have given us an account why a Garrison hath been placed in our Town of Hull without our consent, and Soldiers there against Law, and express words of the Petition of Right, than to be moved (for the avoiding of a needless Charge you have put upon your selves) to give our consent for the removal of our Magazine and Munition (our own proper goods) upon such general Reasons as indeed give no satisfaction to our Judgment: And since you have made the business of Hull your Argument, we would gladly be informed, why our own inclination (on the general rumour of the designs of Papists in the Northern parts) was not thought sufficient ground for Us to put a Person of Honour, Fortune, and unblemish'd Reputation, into a Town and Fort of our own, where our own Magazine lay; and yet the same rumour be warrant enough for you, to commit the same Town and Fort (without our consent) to the Hand of Sir John Hotham, with a power unagreeable to the Law of the Land, or the Liberty of the Subject; and yet of this in point of Right and Privilege, (for sure we are not without Privilege too) we have not all this while complained; and confiding that that place (whatsoever Discourse there is of publick or private Instructions to the contrary) shall be speedily given up, if we shall require it, we shall be contented to dispose our Munition there (as we have done in other Places) for the publick ease and benefit, as upon particular advice, we shall find convenient: Though we cannot think it fit, or consent that the whole Magazine be removed together, but when you shall agree upon such proportions as shall be held necessary for any particular service, we shall sign such Warrants as shall be agreeable to Wisdom and Reason; and if any of them be designed for Ulster or Leinster, you know well the Conveyance will be more easie and convenient from the place they are now in; yet we must tell you, That if the Fears are so great from the Papists at home or of foreign Force (as is pretended), it seems strange, that you make not provision of Arms and Munition for defence of this Kingdom, rather than seek to carry any more from hence, without some course taken for supply, 'especially if you remember your engagement to our Scotch Subjects, for that proportion of Arms which is contained in your Treaty. We speak not this, as not thinking the sending of Arms to Ireland very necessary, but only for the way of the provision; for you know what great quantities we have assigned out of our several Stores, which in due time, we hope, you will see replenished: For the charge of looking to the Magazine at Hull, as it was undertaken voluntarily by you at first, and (to say no more) unnecessarily, so you may free our good People of that Charge, and leave it to us to look to, who are the proper owner of it. And this, we hope, will give you full satisfaction in this point, and that you do not (as you have done in the business of the Militia) send this Message out of complimental Ceremony, resolving to be your own Carvers at last. For we must tell you; if any attempt, or direction shall be made or given in this matter without our consent or approbation we we shall esteem it as an act of violence against us, and declare it to all the World as the greatest violation of our Right, and breach of our Privilege.
'Concerning the six Priests condemned, it is true, they were reprieved by our Warrant, being informed that they were (by some restraint) disabled totake the benefit of our former Proclamation: Since that, we have issued out another for the due execution of the Laws against Papists, and have most solemnly promised in the Wor dof a King, never to pardon any Priest (without your consent) which shall be found guilty by Law; defining to banish these, having herewith sent a Warrant to that purpose, if upon second thoughts you do not disapprove thereof, but if you think the execution of these Persons so very necessary to the great and pious Reformation, we refer it wholly to you; declaring hereby, that upon such your Resolution signify'd to the Ministers of Justice, our Warrant for their Reprieve is determined, and the Law to have its course.
'And now let us ask you (for we are willing to husband time, and to dispatch as much as may be under one Message: God knows, the distractions of this Kingdom want a present Remedy) will there never be a time to offer too, as to ask of us? We will propose no more particulars to you having no luck to please, or be understood by you, take your own time for what concerns our particular: But be sure you have an early, speedy care of the Publick, the Law of the Land; preserve the Dignity and Reverence due to that. It was well said, in a Speech made by a private Person; but published by Order of the House of Commons this Parliament. The Law is that which puts a difference betwixt good and evil, just and unjust. If you take away the Law, all things will fall into confusion every Man will become a Law unto himself, which in the depraved condition of humane Nature, must produce many great enormities: Lust will become a Law, and envy will become a Law; covetousness and ambition will become Laws, and what dictates, what decisions, such Laws will produce, may easily be discerned. So said that Gentleman, and much more very well in defence of the Law and against Arbitrary Power. It is worth looking over and considering; and if the most zealous defence of the true Protestant Profession, and the most resolved Protection of the Law, be the most necessary Duty of a Prince, we cannot believe this miserable distance and misunderstanding can be long continued between us, we having often and earnestly declared them to be the chiefest Desires of our Soul, and the end and rule of all our Actions.
'For Ireland we have sufficiently, and we hope satisfactorily expressed to all our good Subjects our hearty sense of that sad business, in our several Messages on that Argument, but especially in our last of the 8th of this Month concerning our Resolution for that Service; for the speedy, honourable and full performance whereof, we conjure you to yield all possible assistance, and present advice.
The humble Petition of the Gentry and Commons of the County of York to the King, that the Arms and Ammunition at Hull may not be removed.
Most Royal Sovereign,
Encouraged by your Majesty's many testimonies of your gracious goodness to us, and our County; which we can never sufficiently acknowledge; We in all Duty Loyalty of Heart address our selves to your Sacred Majesty, beseeching you to cast your eyes and thoughts upon the safety of your own Person and your Princely Issue, and this while County, a great means of which we conceive doth consist in the Arms and Ammunition at Hull, placed there by your Princely Care and Charge, and since upon general apprehension of dangers from foreign Parts represented unto your Majesty, thought fit as yet to be continued. We for our parts conceiving our selves to be still in danger, do most humbly beseech your Majesty, you will be pleased to take such Course and Order, that your Magazine may still there remain, for the better securing of these and the Northern parts And the rather because we think it fit that that part of the Kingdom should be best provided, where your Sacred Person doth reside, your Person being like David's, the Eight of Israel, and more worth than ten thousands of us; Who shall daily pray, &c.
Not long after this, His Majesty continuing his Residence at York, on the 22d of April, 1642. there came to Hull the Duke of York, the Prince Elector, the Earl of Newport, the Lord Willoughby, and some other Persons of Honour with their attendants to see the Town, who were respectfully entertained by the Major and the Governour, who spending that Day in viewing the Beauty and Strength of the Place, were invited to a Banquet by the Major, and to Dinner by the Governour the next day (being St. George 's Day;) but a little before Dinnertime, Sir John Hotham being busie in his entertainment of their Highnesses, was suddenly saluted by Sir Lewis Diver with a Message from his Majesty, that he also intended to Dine with him that day, being then within four Miles of Hull with three hundred Horse and upwards, whereat being starded for the present he consulted with Master Pelham, a Member of the House, and Alderman of Hull, and with some others what to do, whereupon, a Messenger was thought fit to be forthwith sent to his Majesty, humbly to beseech him to forbear to come forasmuch as he could not without betraying the Trust committed to him, set open the Gates to so great a Guard as he came attended withal; upon the return of the Messenger, who certified concerning the King's advance towards the Town, he drew up the Bridge, and shut the Gates, and commanded the Soldiers to stand to their Arms round about the Walls.
About Eleven of the Clock his Majesty with his attendants came to the Gate of the Town called Beverley-Gate, where calling for Sir John Hotham, he commanded the Gate to be opened; whose frequent Answer to that re-iterated command was, That he was intrusted by the Parliament, for the securing of the Town for his Majesty's Honour, and the Kingdoms use, which he intended by God's help to do; and herein he desired his Majesty not to misinterpret his action, protesting his Loyalty, and proffering that if his Majesty would be pleased with the Prince and twelve more to come in, he should be very welcome, otherwise he could not, without betraying his Trust to the State, admit entrance to so great a Guard. But his Majesty refusing to enter without his whole train, about one of the Clock the Duke and the Prince Elector with their attendants, went forth to his Majesty, who departed not from the Gates 'till four of the Clock During all which time not the least disturbance was offered to Sir John Hotham or his Soldiers, from the Townsmen, although they exceeded their Numbers, but rather encouragement and offers of assistance, if need should require. About five of the Clock, having given to Sir John Hotham one hour to consider what he did, his Majesty returned to the Gate, and receiving the same Answer as before, he commanded Sir John Hotham to be proclaimed Traytor by two Heralds at Arms, and then retreated to Beverley, six miles off, where he lodged that Night. And the next Morning sent again an Herald and some others with Conditions of Pardon, if yet he would open the Gates: But the same Answer being returned as before, his Majesty advanced forwards towards York, and the same Night dispatch'd the following Message to the two Houses:
'His Majesty having received the Petition inclosed from most of the chief of the Gentry near about York, desiring the stay of his Majesty's Arms and Munition, in his Magazine at Hull, for the Safety, not only of his Majesty's Person and Children, but likewise of all these Northern Parts (the manifold Rumours of great Dangers inducing them to make their said Supplication) thought it most fit to go himself in Person to his Town of Hull, to view his Arms and Munition there; that thereupon he might give directions, what part thereof might be necessary to remain there, for the security and satisfaction of his Northern Subjects, and what part thereof might be spared for Ireland; the arming of his Majesty's Scots subjects, that are to go thither; or to replenish his chief Magazine of the Tower of London, where being come upon the 23d. of this instant April, much contrary to his expectation, he found all the Gates shut upon him, and the Bridges drawn up by the express Command of Sir John Hotham (who for the present commands a Garrison there) and from the Walls slatly denied his Majesty entrance into his said Town the Reason of the said Denial being as strange to his Majesty, as the thing it self; it being, that he could not admit his Majesty without Breach of Trust to his Parliament, which did the more incense his Majesty's anger against him, for that he most feditiously and traiterously would have put his disobedience upon his Majesty's Parliament, which his Majesty being willing to clear, demanded of him, if he had the Impudence to averr, That the Parliament had directed him to deny his Majesty entrance, and that if he had any such Order that he should shew it in Writing; for otherwise his Majesty could not believe it, which he could no ways produce but maliciously made that false Interpretation according to his own Inferences, confessing that he had no such positive Order which his Majesty was ever confident of; but his Majesty not willing to take so much pains in vain, offered to come into that his Town, only with twenty Horse, finding, that the main of his pretence lay that his Majesty's train was able to command the Garrison. Notwithstanding his Majesty was so desirous to go thither in a private way, that he gave warning thereof but over-night; which he refusing, but by way of condition (which his Majesty thought much below him) held it most necessary to declare him Traytor, (unless, upon better thoughts, he should yield obedience) which he doubly deserved; as well for refusing entrance to his natural Sovereign, as by laying the Reason thereof groundlesly and maliciously upon his Parliament.
'One Circumstance his Majesty cannot forget, That his Son, the Duke of York, and his Nephew, the Prince Elector, having gone thither the Day before, Sir John Hotham delayed the letting of them out to his Majesty 'till after some Consultation.
'Hereupon his Majesty hath thought it expedient to demand Justice of his Parliament against the said Sir John Hotham, to be exemplarily inflicted upon him according to the Laws; and the rather, because his Majesty would give them a fit occasion to free themselves from this imputation, by him so injuriously cast upon them, to the end his Majesty may have the easier way for the chastising of so high a Disobedience.
To Our trusty and well-beloved, the Mayor, Aldermen, and Burgesses of Our Town and Port of Kingston upon Hull.
Trusty and well-beloved, we greet you well. Whereas we have been long sensible of the just complaints and great burdens of our Subjects in these Northern parts, by occasion of the Garrison in our Town of Hull; and whereas we were upon Friday the 22d. of this month petitioned by divers of the Gentry, and others, Inhabitants of this County, that the Munition at Hull might remain in the Magazine there, for the security of our Person, and of all these Northern parts, their fear, being much grounded upon the Parliaments Relations of Foreign Invasions; upon which, the more to express our care of our Peoples safety, we did our self go in Person to that our Town, that upon our own view, we might consult what proportion of it might fitly be removed upon any pressing occasion, having a respect to the promised Supply for Scotland, the necessary use of Arms for Ireland, as well as for the safe-guard and satisfaction of these Northern parts: But much contrary to our expectation, and the Duty and Allegiance of our Subjects, we found the Gates of that our Town shut, and the Bridge drawn up against us; and tho' we came in a peaceable way, reposing the greatest confidence in the Love and Loyalty of our People, by offering (as we did) to put our own Person, and our two Sons, but with twenty Horse, into that Town, there being in it a Garrison of about eight hundred Soldiers; yet we were not only deny'd entrance, but in a warlike manner opposed by Sir John Hotham, the armed men being placed in all the Ports, and about all the Walls of the Town, alledging (though falsly) for his excuse the command of the Parliament, and being pressed by us to shew such an Order in Writing, he could not do it; for we were ever confident that there were never any publick Order of theirs, that could so much as imply a denyal to our admission; we knowing well enough, that he was intrusted by them for a guard and security of that place against Foreign Enemies, or those at home who are disaffected in Religion, and not against his natural Sovereign, which hostile opposition and Actual levying of a War against our Person, being by the Statute of 25 Edw. III. enacted High-Treason: Which Statute considered, and that for the avoiding of an Jealousies, as we have said, we were content to have been admitted with so very find a numbmeri n our Company; we were thereupon constrained to proclaim the said Sir John Hotham, and all these that should adhere to, or assist him, Traytors. Of all which abovesaid Passages, we have acquainted our Parliament, demanding Justice to be done upon him, that they might thereby have opportunity to vindicate the Imputation laid on them by Sir John Hotham, and we the easier way to chastise according to the Law so high a Treason. And left a misunderstanding of our Intentions, or of the Law, may misguide any of our well-affected Subjects, the Inhabitants, Captains, Officers, or Soldiers in that Town; we have thought fit to commend to your Consideration the aforenamed Statute with that of the 11 of Hen. VII. Chap. 1.
Wherein it is declared by the unanimous Assent of Parliament, That the Subjects of this Realm are bound, by the duty of Allegiance, to serve the King, for the time being, for the defence of his Person and the Land, against every Rebellion, Might, or Power raised against him, and with his Majesty to enter or abide in Service and in Battle if cause so require: And it was therefore then Enacted, That from thenceforth no Person whatsoever that shall attend upon the King, or be in place by his Command within or without the Land, that for the same Deed and true Service of Allegiance, he, and they be no ways attaint or convict of High-Treason, or of oither Offences for that Cause, by any Process of Law, whereby he, or any of them shall lost or forfeit Lives, Lands, Tenements, Goods, or any Thing; but by, for that Deed and Service utterly discharged of any vexation, trouble, or lost; and if anyh Act or Acts, or other Process of Law thereupon for the same happen to be made contrary to this Ordinance, that then that Act or Acts, or other Process of the Law whatsoever they shall be, stand and be utterly void.
All which together with the Copies of our Message and Petition (which we fond have inclosed) we require you to publish to the Inhabitants, and all such Commanders and Soldiers as will hear them: That knowing hath the Peril of the Law on the one side, and the Security of such as shall adhere to us on the other, they be not misled (through ignorance) to deel in their Allegiance; and that the Soldiers may lay down their Arms, and admit our entrance in in a peaceable way. In so doing, you shall both discharge your Duties, and those that shall have need, be assured to find (upon their such submission) our ready mercy and pardon. And we do likewise require, and charge all you, the Inhabitants (as well Soldiers as others) upon your Allegiance, that you permit not any part of our Magazine, or Munition to be removed or transported out of that Form under any pretence of Order or Power whatsoever, without Our Royal Assent in Writing under out Hand, assuring you, that it will be much more pleasing to us to have occasion administred by the fidelity of the Inhabitants to enlarge those Graces and Immunities granted to that Town by Our Predecessors, than to have any occasion to question your Charter.
Given at our Court at York, the 25th. of April, 1642.
'We are so much concerned in the undutiful Affront (an indignity all our good Subjects must disdain in our behalf) we received from Sir John Hotham at Hull, that we are impatient 'till we receive Justice from you; and are compelled to call again for an Answer, being confident (however you would be so careful (though without our consent) to put a Garrison into that our Town, to secure it and our Magazine against any attempt of the Papists) that you never intended to dispose and maintain it against us your Sovereign: Therefore we require you forthwith, for the business will admit no delay) that you take some speedy course, that our said Town and Magazine be immediately deliver'd up unto us, and that such severe exemplary Proceedings be against those Persons (who have offered us this insupportable Affront and Injury) as by the Law is provided: And till this be done, we shall intend no business whatsoever (other than the business of Ireland) for if we are brought into a condition so much worse than any of our Subjects, that whilst you all enjoy your Privileges, and may not have your possessions disturbed, or your Titles questioned, we only may be spoiled, thrown out of our Towns, and our Goods taken from us; 'tis time to examine how we have lost those Privileges, and to try all possible ways, by the help of God, the Law of the Land, and the Affection of our good Subjects, to recover them and vindicate our self from those Injuries. And if we shall miscarry herein, we shall be the first Prince of this Kingdom that hath done so; having no other end, but to defend the true Protestant Profession, the Law of the Land, and the Liberty of the Subject: And God so deal with us as we continue in those Resolutions.
Die Martis 26. April 1642.
It is declared by the Lords and Commons in Parliament, that the stopping of the Passages between Hull and the Parliament, and the intercepting of Messengers imployed from the Parliament to Hull, or from any that are in the service of the Parliament, or any Letters whatsoever sent by any, to, or from the Parliament, is a high Breach of the Privileges of Parliament, which by the Laws of this Kingdom, and the Protestation, we are bound to defend with our Lives and our Fortunes, and to bring the Violators thereof to condign Punishment; and hereby all Lords Lieutenants and their Deputies, authorized by the Ordinance of both Houses of Parliament, all Sheriffs, Justices, Bailiffs, Constables, and other Officers whatsoever, are required to give their utmost Aid and Assistance to all that are imployed in the said service, for their better and more speedy, free and safe passage. And to apprehend all such as by colour of any Warrant or other Authority whatsoever, shall endeavour to go about to hinder any that are imployed about, and them to apprehend, and in safe Custody to send up to the Parliament.
Die Martis, April 26, 1642.
Ordered by the Lords and Commons in Parliament, That the Sheriffs and Justices of the Peace of the Counties of York and Lincoln, and all other his Majesty's Officers shall suppress all Forces that shall be raised, or gathered together in those Counties; either to force the said Town of Hull, to stop the passengers to, and from the same, or in any other way to disturb the Peace of the Kingdom.
The Declaration, Votes, and Order of Assistance of both Houses of Parliament, concerning the Magazine at Hull, and Sir John Hotham, Governour thereof.
The Lords and Commons in Parliament finding just cause to fear, not only the desperate designs of Papists, and others of the malignant Party at home, but also the malice of Enemies, incited by them from abroad, thought it necessary, for the safety of this Kingdom, to secure the Town of Kingston upon Hull, being one of the most considerable places for strength, and affording the best conveniency for Landing of Foreign Forces, and where a part of the Magazine of the Kingdom for that time was placed; and for that end appointed Sir John Hotham, one of the Members of the House of Commons, being a Gentleman of the same County, of a considerable Fortune, and approved Integrity, to take upon him the Government of the Town, and to draw thither some of the Train'd-Bands, for the guard thereof; in which apprehension and resolution thereupon taken, they are the more confirmed by the fight of some intercepted Letters of the Lord Digby (a principal Person of that Party) written to the Queen, and Sir Lewis Dives, whereby that Party discovered an endeavour to perswade his Majesty to declare himself, and retire into some place of safety in this Kingdom, in opposition to ways of accommodation with his people; and to give the better opportunity to himself, and other dangerous persons to resort thither; which could have no other end, but to incline his Majesty to take Arms against his Parliament and good Subjects and miserably to embroil this Kingdom in Civil Wars.
About which time one Captain Leg (a man formerly imploy'd in the practice of bringing up the Army against the Parliament) had direction, by Warrant, produced by him, under the King's Hand and Sign Manuel, to enter Kingston upon Hull, and to draw thither such of the Train'd-Bands as he should think fit; and that the Earl of Newcastle came thither in a suspicious way, and under a seigned Name, and did endeavour to possess himself of the said Town by virtue of the like Warrant and Authority.
They farther conceiving, that the Magazine there being of so great importance to this Kingdom, would be more secure in the Tower of London, did humbly petition his Majesty to give his Consent, the same might be moved, which not withstanding his Majesty did refuse; and thereupon some few ill-affected persons about the City of York, took upon them the presumption, in opposition to the Desires, and in contempt of both Houses, to petition his Majesty to continue the Magazine at Hull, alledging it to be for the safety of his Majesty (as it there could be a greater care in them, of his Majesty's Royal Person, than in his Parliament); and his Majesty the next day, after the delivery of that Petition, being the 23d. of this instant April, took occasion thereupon to go to the Town of Hull, attended with about 400 Horse (the Duke of York, and the Prince Elector being gone thither the day before) and required Sir John Hotham to deliver up the Town into his hands; who perceiving his Majesty to be accompanied with such force, as might have mastered the Garrison of the Town; and having received intelligence of an intention to deprive him of his Life, in case the King should be admitted, informed his Majesty of the Trust reposed in him by both Houses of Parliament, and that he could not, without Breach of that Trust, let him in; beseeching his Majesty to give him leave to send to the Parliament to acquaint them with his Majesty's Command, and to receive their directions thereupon, which he would do with all expedition; which Answer his Majesty was not pleased to accept of, but presently caused him and his Officers to be proclaimed Traytors before the Walls of the Town; and thereupon dispatched a Message to both Houses, therein charging Sir John Hotham with High-Treason, and aggravating his Offence, because he pretended the Parliaments Command. In the mean while hindring him of all means of intelligence with the Parliament, for his Majesty caused all Passages to be stopped between him and them; and in pursuance of the same, one of his Servants, who was sent by him with Letters to the Parliament, to inform them of the truth of those proceedings, was apprehended, his Letters taken from him, and his Person detained; whereby (contrary to the common Liberty of every Subject) he was not only deprived of means to clear himself of that heavy Accusation, but of all ways of intercourse; either to receive Directions from them that trusted him, or to inform them what had happened.
The Lords and Commons finding the said proceedings to be a high Violation of the Privileges of Parliament (of which his Majesty had in several Messages expressed himself to be so tender) a great infringement of the Liberty of the Subject, and the Law of the Land, which his Majesty had so often lately professed should be his Rule to Govern by, and tending to the endangering of his Majesty's Person, and the Kingdom's Peace; thought fit, as well for the Vindication of their own Rights and Privileges, and the Indemnity of that worthy Person employed by them, as for the Clearing of their own Proceeding, to publish these ensuing Votes, which were made upon a former Relation, that came from the King.
Die Jovis, April 28, 1642. Resolved upon the Question.
That Sir John Hotham, Knight, according to this Relation, hath done nothing but in obedience to the Command of both Houses of Parliament. Resolved, &c. That this declaring Sir John Hotham Traytor, being a Member of the House of Commons, is a high breach of the Privilege of Parliament.
The Order of Assistance given to the Committee of both Houses, concerning their going to Hull, April 28, 1642.
Whereas the Earl of Stamford, the Lord Willoughby of Parham, Sir Edward Ascough, Sir Christopher Wray, Sir Samuel Owfield, and Mr. Hatcher are by the Lords and Commons in Parliament Assembled, Commanded to make their repair into the Counties of York and Lincoln, and the Town of Kingston upon Hull, for special Service for his Majesty, and the Peace and Safety of the Kingdom; and accordingly have received particular Instructions for their better Directions therein: These are to require all Lords-Lieutenants and their Deputies, Sheriffs, Justices of the Peace, Mayors, Bailiffs, Constables, and all other his Majesty's Officers and Loving Subjects to be Aiding and Assisting unto them upon all Occasions, as need shall require.
His Majesty's Answer to the Declaration, Votes, and Order of Assistance of both Houses of Parliament, concerning the Magazine at Hull.
'Since our gracious Message of the 24th of April last, to both Houses of Parliament (demanding Justice for the high and unheard of Affront offered unto Us, at the Gates of Hull, by Sir John Hotham) is not thought worthy of an Answer; but that instead thereof they have thought fit by their Printed Votes, of the 28th of April last, to own and avow that unparallel'd Act of Sir John Hotham 's, to be done in Obedience to the Command of both Houses of Parliament (tho' at that time he could produce no such Command) and with other Resolutions against our Proceedings there, to publish a Declaration concerning that business, as an Appeal to the People; and as if their Intercourse with us, and for our satisfaction, were now to no more purpose; though we know this course of theirs to be very unsuitable to the modesty and duty of former times, and unwarrantable by any Precedents but what themselves have made; yet we are not unwilling to joyn issue with them in this way, and to let all the World know, how necessary, just, and lawful all our proceedings have been in this point, and that the defence of these proceedings is the defence of the Law of the Land, of the Liberty and Property of the Subject, and that by the same Rule of Justice, which is now offered to us, all the private Interest and Title of all our good Subjects to all their Lands and Goods are confounded and destroyed. Mr. Pym himself tells you, in his Speech against the E. of Strafford (published by Order of the House of Commons) the Law is the safe-guard; the custody of all private interests; your Honours, your Lives, your Liberties and Estates are all in the keeping of the Law, without this every man hath a like right to any thing: And we would sain be answered what Title any Subject of our Kingdom hath to his House or Land, that we have not to our Town of Hull ? Or what Right hath he to his Money, Plate, or Jewels that we have not to our Magazine or Munition there? If we had ever such a Title, we would know when we lost it. And if that Magazine and Munition (bought with our own Money) were ever ours, when, and how that property went out of us? We very well know the great and unlimited power of a Parliament, but we know as well, that it is only in that sense, as we are a part of that Parliament, without us, and against our consent, the Votes of either, or both Houses together, must not, cannot, shall not (if we can help it, for our Subjects sake, as well as our own) forbid any thing that is enjoyned by the Law, or enjoyn any thing that is forbidden by the Law, but in any such alteration which may be for the peace and happiness of the Kingdom, we have not, shall not refuse to consent; and we doubt not but all our good Subjects will easily discern in what a miserable insecurity and confusion they must necessarily and inevitably be, if Descents may be alter'd, Purchases avoided, Assurances and Conveyances cancelled, the Sovereign Legal Authority despised and resisted by Votes and Orders of either, or both Houses; and this we are sure is our case at Hull, and as it is ours to day, by the same Rule it may be theirs to morrow.
'Against any desperate designs of the Papists, we have sufficiently expressed our zeal and intentions, and shall be as forward to adventure our Life and Fortune to oppose any such Designs, as the meanest Subject in our Kingdom.
'For the malignant Party, as the Law hath not, to our knowledge, defined their condition, so hath neither House presented them to us under such a notion as we may understand whom they intend, and we shall therefore only enquire after, and avoid the malignant Party, under the Character of persons disaffected to the peace and government of the Kingdom, and such who (neglecting and despising the Law of the Land) have given themselves other rules to walk by, and so dispensed with their obedience to Authority: Of these persons (as destructive to the Common-wealth) we shall take all possible caution.
'Why any Letters intercepted from the Lord Digby (wherein he mentions a retreat to a place of safety) should hinder us from visiting our own Fort, and how we have opposed any ways of accommodation with our Parliament, and what ways and overtures have been offer'd in any way, or like any desire of such accommodation, or whether our Message of the 20th of January last (so often in vain pressed by us) hath not sufficiently expressed our earnest desire of it, let all the world judge, neither is it in the power of any persons to incline us to take Arms against our Parliament, and our good Subjects, and miserably to embroil this Kingdom in Civil Wars. We have given sufficient evidence to the World how much our affections abhor, and our heart bleeds at the apprehension of a Civil War; and let God and the World judge if our Care and Industry be not only to defend and protect the Liberty of the Subject, the Law of the Kingdom, our own Just Rights (part of that Law) and our Honour (much more precious than our Life) and if in opposition to these any Civil War shall arise upon whose account the blood and destruction that must follow must be cast, God and our own Conscience tells us that we are to clear.
'For Captain Leg 's being sent heretofore to Hull (tho' by the way this is the first time we ever heard that he was accused for the practice of bringing up the Army against the Parliament, neither do we yet know that there is such a charge against him) or the Earl of Newcastle 's being sent hither, by our Warrant and Authority; we asked a Question long ago in our Answer to both Houses concerning the Magazine at Hull, which we have cause to think is not easie to be answered: Why the general Rumour of the design of the Papists in the Northern parts should not be thought sufficient ground for us to put such a Person of Honour, Fortune, and unblemish'd Reputation (as the Ear) of Newcastle is known to be) into a Town and Fort of our own, where our own Magazine lay, and yet the same Rumour be warrant enough to commit the same Town and Fort, without our Consent, to the hands of Sir John Hotham, with such a power as is now too well known and understood. How our refusal to have that Magazine removed upon the Petition of both House could give an Advantage against us, to have it taken from us; and whether it was a refusal, all men will easily understand who read our Answer to that Petition, to which it hath not been yet thought fit to make any Reply.
'For the condition of those persons who presented the Petition to us at York, (whom that Declaration calls some few ill-affected persons about the City of York,) to continue the Magazine at Hull, we make no doubt but that Petition will appear to be attested both in number and weight, by Persons of Honour and Integrity, and much more conversant with the affections of the whole County, than most of those Petitions which have been received with much consent and approbation: And for the presumption of interposing their advice, we the more wonder at that exception, when such encouragement hath been given, and thanks declared to multitudes of mean unknown People, Apprentices, and Porters, who accompanied Petitions of very strange natures.
'For the manner of our going to Hull, we have clearly set forth the same in our Message to both Houses, of that business, and for any intelligence given to Sir John Hotham of an intention to deprive him of his Life, as we know there was no such intention in us, having given him all possible assurance of the same, at our being there; so we are confident no such intelligence was given, or if it were, it was by some Villain, who had nothing but malice, or design to affright him from his due obedience, to warrant him. And Sir John Hotham had all the reason to assure himself, that his Life would be in much more danger by refusing to admit his King into his own Town and Fort, than by yielding him that Obedience, which he owed by his Oaths of Allegiance and Supremacy, and the Protestation, and which he well knew was due and warrantable by the Laws of the I and.
'For the number of our Attendants (tho' that could be no warrant for such a disobedience in a Subject) it is well known (as we expressed in our Message to both Houses, to which, credit ought to have been given) that we offered to go into the Town with twenty Horse only, our whole train being unarmed, and whosoever thinks that too great an Attendance for our self, and our two Sons, have sure an intention to bring us to a meaner Retinue than they yet will avow.
'Here is then our Case, (of which let all the World judge) we endeavoured to visit a Town and Fort of our own, wherein our Magazine lay, a Subject in defiance of us, shuts the Gate, against us, with armed men resists, denies, and opposes our entrance, tells us in plain terms, we shall not come in; we do not pretend to understand much Law, yet in the point of Treason, we have had much learning taught this Parliament, and if the sense of the Statute 25 Edw. III. cap. 2. be not very differing from the Letter, Sir John Hotham 's Act was no less than plain High-Treason: And we had been contemptibly stupid if we had (after all hose circumstances of Grace and Favour then shewed him) made any scruple to proclaim him Traytor. And whether he be so or no, if he shall render himself, we will require no other Tryal, than that which the Law hath appointed to every Subject, and which we are confident we have not (in the least degree) in those proceedings violated no more than we have done the privilege of Parliament, by endeavouring in a just way to challenge our own unquestionable Privileges; for that in such a case the declaring him Traytor, being a Member of the House of Commons, without process of Law, should be a breach of Privilege of Parliament (of which we are sure none extends to Treason, Felony, or Breach of the Peace) against the Liberty of the Subject, or against the Law of the Land, we must have other Reasons than bare Votes.
'We would know if Sir John Hotham had (with those Forces by which he kept us out of our own Town of Hull) pursued us to the Gates of York (which he might as legally have done) must we have staid from declaring him Traytor 'till process of Law might have issued out against him? Will Fears and Jealousies dispence with real and necessary Forms; and must we, when actual War is levy'd upon us, observe Forms, which the Law it self doth not enjoyn? The Cause is truly stated, let all the World judge (unlessthe meet sitting of a Parliament doth suspend all Laws, and we are the only Person in England, against whom Treason cannot be committed) where the fault is: And whatsoever Course we shall be driven to for the vindication of this our Privilege, and for the recovery and maintenance of our known and undoubted Rights, we do promise in the presence of Almighty God, and as we hope for his blessing in our success, that we will to the utmost of our Powers defend and maintain the true Protestant Profession, the Law of the Land, the Liberty of the Subject, and the just Privilege and Freedom of Parliament.
'For the order of Assistance given to the Committees of both Houses concerning their going to Hull, we shall say no more, but that those persons named in that Order, we presume will give no Commands, or our good Subjects obey other than what are warranted by Law (how large and unlimited soever the Directions are, or the Instructions may be) for to that Rule we shall apply our own Actions, and by it require an Account from other Men. And that all our good Subjects may the better know their Duty in Matters of this Nature, we wish them carefully to peruse the Statute in the 11th. Year of Henry VII. Chap. 1. We conclude with Mr. Pym 's own Words; If the Prerogative of the King overwhelm the Liberty of the People, it will be turned to Tyranny; if Liberty undermine the Prerogative, it will grow into Anarchy; and so we say into Confusion.
His Majesty's Letter to the High Sheriff of the County of York, May 5, 1642. To our Trusty and Well-beloved the High Sheriff of our County of York.
Trusty and well-beloved, We greet you well; Whereas we understand, that Sir John Hotham takes upon him (without any Legal Authority or Power) to issue Warrants to Constables, and other our Officers, to raise divers of our Train'd-Bands of this our County, and require them to march with their Arms, and to come into our Town of Hull, where he hath disarmed divers of them, keeps their Arms, and discharges the Men; and whereas we are credibly informed, that divers Persons, who were lately Collonels, Lieutenant-Collonels, Captains, and Officers of the Train'd-Bands of this our County, intend shortly to summon, and endeavour to muster the Forces of this our County: For as much as by the Law of the Land, none of our Train'd-Bands are to be Raised or Mustered, upon any Pretence, or Authority whatsoever, but by special Warrant under our own Hand, or by a Legal Writ directed to the Sheriff of the County, or by Warrant from the Lord-Lieutenant, or Deputy-Lieutenants of the County, appointed and authorized by Commission under our Great Seal. And whereas, at present, there is no Lord-Lieutenant, or Deputy Lieutenant legally authorized to Command the Forces and Train'd Bands of this our County of York, and the Commissions, Command and Power of all Collonels, Lieutenant-Collonels, Captains, and Officers of our Train'd-Bands (which are derived from the Commission and Power of the Lord-Lieutenant only) are now actually void, and of no force and authority. Our Will and Command therefore is, That you forthwith issue Warrants, under your Hand, to all the late Collonels, Lieutenant-Collonels, Captains, and Officers, who while the Lord-Lieutenant's Commission was in force) had the Command of the Train'd-Bands of this our County; and also to all High and Petty Constables, and other our Officers in this our County, whom it may concern; Charging and Commanding them, and every of them, in our Name, and upon their Allegiance, and as they tender the Peace of this our Kingdom, not to Muster, Levy, or Raise, or to Summon, or Warn (upon any Pretence, or Directions whatsoever) any of our Train'd-Bands to Rise, Muster, or March without express Warrant under our Hand, or Warrant from you, our Sheriff, grounded upon a particular Writ to that purpose; which we also Command you, not to put in execution, without cut Privity and Allowance, while we shall reside in this our County. And in case any of our Train'd-Bands shall rise or gather together, contrary to this our Command; then we will and command you to charge and require them to dissolve, and retire to their Dwellings. And if upon due Summons from you, they shall not lay down their Arms and depart to their Dwellings; we will and command you, upon your Allegiance, and as you tender the Peace and Quiet of this your Kingdom, to raise the Power of the County, and Suppress them by force, as the Law hath directed, and given you power to do. And to the end that this ear express command may be notified to all our good Subjects in this our County, so as none may pretend hereafter to have been misled thro' ignorance: We require you to cause these our Letters to be forthwith read, and published openly in all Churches and Parishes in this our County; herein you may not fail, as you sender the Safety and Honour of Our Person, the Good and Peace of this Our Kingdom, and will answer the contrary at your Peril. For which, this shall be your sufficient Warrant.
To the King's most Excellent Majesty.
The most Humble Answer of the Lords and Commons in Parliament to two Messages from your Sacred Majesty, concerning Sir John Hotham's refusal to give your Majesty Entrance into the Town of Hull. Presented to His Majesty at York the 9th. of May, 1642
'Your Majesty may be pleased to understand, That we your great Counsel finding manifold evidences of the wicked Counsels and Practices of some in near Trust and Authority about you, to put the Kingdom into a Combustion, by drawing your Majesty into places of strength, remote from your Parliament, and by excising your People to Commotions, under pretence of Erving your Majesty against your Parliament; left this malignant Party, by the Advantage of the Town and Magazine of Hull, should be enabled to go thro' with their mischievous Intentions, did (in discharge of the great trust that lies upon us, and by that power, which in cases of this nature resides in us) command the Town of Hull to be secured by a Garrison of the adjoyned Train'd-Bands, under the Government of Sir John Hotham, requiring him to keep the same for the Service of your Majesty and the Kingdom, wherein we have done nothing contrary to your Royal Sovereignty in that Town, or Legal Propriety in the Magazine.
'Upon consideration of Sir John Hotham 's proceeding at your Majesty's being there, we have, upon very good Grounds adjudged, that he could not discharge the trust upon which, nor make good the end for which he was placed in the Guard of that Town and Magazine, if he had let in your Majesty with such Counsellors and Company as then were about you.
'Wherefore upon full Resolution of both Houses, we have declared Sir John Hotham to be clear from that odious Crime of Treason, and have avowed, That he hath therein done nothing, but in obedience to the commands of both Houses of Parliament, assuring ourselves, that upon mature Deliberation, your Majesty will not interpret his obedience to such Authority to be an Affront to your Majesty; or to be of that Nature as to require any justice to be done upon him, or satisfaction to be made to your Majesty, but that you will see just cause of joyning with your Parliament in preserving and securing the Peace of the Kingdom, suppressing this wicked and malignant Party, who by false colours and pretensions of maintaining your Majesty's prerogative against the Parliament (wherein they fully agree with the Rebels in Ireland) have been the Causes of all our Distempers and Dangers.
'For prevention whereof, we know no better Remedy than settling the Militia of the Kingdom according to the Bill, which we have sent your Majesty without any intention of deserting or declining the validity or observance of that Ordinance, which pass'd both Houses, upon your Majesty's former refusal; but we still hold that Ordinance to be effectual by the Laws of the Kingdom.
'And we shall be exceeding glad, if your Majesty by approving these our just, dutiful, and necessary Proceedings shall be pleased to entertain such Counsel, as we assure ourselves (by God's Blessing) will prove very advantageous for the Honour and Greatness of your Majesty, the safety and Peace of your People; amongst which we know none more likely to produce such good effects, than a Declaration from your Majesty of your purpose to lay aside all thoughts of going into Ireland and to make a spedy return into these Parts, to be near your Parliament, which, as it is our most humble Desire, and earnest Petition, so shall it be seconded with our most dutiful care for the safety of your Royal Person, and constant Prayers, that it may prove honourable and successful in the happiness of your Majesty and all your Kingdoms.
His Majesty's Reply to the Answer of both Houses of Parliament, presented to His Majesty the 9th. of May, to two Messages sent to them from His Majesty concerning in John Hotham 's Refusal to give his Majesty Entrance into his Town of Hull.
His Majesty was in good hope, that the Reason why you so long deferred your Answer to his Messages concerning Hull, was, That you might the better give him Satisfaction therein, which now adds the more to his astonishment, finding this answer (after so long Advisement) to be of that Nature, which cannot but rather increase than diminish the present Distractions, if constantly adher'd unto by the Parliament. Way it not too much shall his Majesty's Town of Hull had a Garrison put into it, to the great Charge of the Country, and Inconvenience of the poor Inhabitants, without his Majesty's consent and approbation, under colour at that time of Foreign Invasions and Apprehensions of the Popish Party; but now the Reason thereof must be enlarged with a Scandal to his Majesty and his faithful Servants, only to bring in the more specious Pretext for the avowing of Sir John Hotham's Treasonable Insolence.
His Majesty hath often heard of the great Trust, that by God and Man's Law is committed to the King, for the Defence and Safety of his People; but as yet hath never understood what Trust or Power is committed to either, or both Houses of Parliament without the King, they being summoned to Counsel and Advise the King; but by what Law or Authority they possess themselves of his Majesty's proper Right and Inheritance; he is confident that as they have not, so they cannot shew.
His Majesty hitherto hath not given the least interruption to publick Justice; but you, rather than suffer one of your Members to come so much as to a Legal Tryal for the highest Crime, will make use of an Order of Parliament to countenance Treason, by declaring him free from that Guilt, which all former Ages never accounted other; and that, without so much as inquiring the Opinion of the judges; for his Majesty is confident that you would have mention'd their Opinion, if you had asked the same.
Therefore his Majesty expects, That upon farther and better consideration of the great and necessary Consequence of the Business of Hull, and seriously weighing how much this doth concern the Peace and Quiet of the Kingdom, you will (without farther instance from his Majesty) give him full and speed, Justice against Sir John Hotham; and he leaves all his People to think what hope of Justice there is left for them, when you shall refuse, or delay to give your own Sovereign satisfaction; and (as his Majesty hath already said) 'till this be done, he will intend no business whatsoever other than that of Ireland.
And his Majesty likewise expects, That in the way you have expressed in this your Answer you will not put the Militia in execution, untill you can shew him by what Law you have Authority to do the same, without his consent; or if you do, he is confident, that he shall find much more obedience, according to Low, than you against Law: And his Majesty shall esteem all those that shall obey you therein, to be Disturbers of the Peace of the Kingdom; and, in due time, cal them Legally to a strict Account for the same.
And lastly, concerning his Return, he never heard, That the Standering of a King's Government and his faithful Servants, the refusing of him Justice in a Case of Treason, and the seeking to take away his undoubted and legal Authority, under the pretence of putting the Kingdom into a Posture of Defence, were Arguments to induce a King to come near, or hearken to his Parliament.
By the King.
Whereas our Town and County of Kingston upon Hull, is and hath for some Months last past been withheld from us; and our entrance into the same traiterously resisted and opposed with great force and numbers of armed Men, commended and diverted by Sir John Hotham, who (we understand) is now labouring to seduce more of one loving Subjects to help and assist him in that odious and traiterous Action.
We do by this Proclamation, straightly Charge and Command all our loving Subjects, that they do not give him any Assistance, Aid, or Succour by their own Persons, or by sending any other thither, or by conveying, or causing to be conveyed into the said Town or County any Persons, Money, Arms, ammunition, Victuals or any other aid or succour for or towards the keeping or defending of the said Town or County against us, or any sent or to be sent by us, for the removing of the unlawful forces there, and taking possession of our Fort, Port, Arms, and Ammunition there. And hereof we charge all our loving Subjects to take notice, and to give present and full obedience hereunto as they will avoid the Danger of falling into the detestable Crime of Treason.
A Remonstrance: or, The Declaration of the Lords and Commons now Assembled in Parliament, the 26th. of May, 1642. in Answer to a Declaration under his Majesty's Name, concerning the Business of Hull.
Although the great Affairs of this Kingdom, and the miserable bleeding Condition of the Kingdom of Ireland, affords us little leisure to spend our Time in Declarations, and in Answers and Replies; yet the malignant Party about his Majesty, taking all Occasions to multiply Calumnies upon the Houses of Parliament, and to publish sharp Invectives under his Majesty's Name against them and their Proceedings (a new Engine which they have invented to heighten the Destruction of this Kingdom and to beget and increase Distrust and Disaffection between the King and his Parliament and the People) we cannot be so much wanting to our own Innocence, or to the Duty of our Trust, as not to clear our selves from those false Aspersions, and (which is our chiefest Care) to disabuse the Peoples Minds, and open their Eyes that under the false Shews and Pretexts of the Law of the Land, and of their own Rights and Liberties, they may not be carried into the Road-way that leads to the utter Ruin and Subversion thereof.
A late Occasion that these wicked Spirits of Division have taken to defame, and indeed to arraign the Proceedings of both Houses of Parliament, hath been from our Votes of the 28th. of April, and our Declaration concerning the Business of Hull, which because we put forth before we could send our Answer concerning that Matter unto His Majesty, those mischievous Instruments off Diffention between the King, the Parliament, and the People, whose chief Labour and Study is to misrepresent our Actions to His Majesty and to the Kingdom, would needs interpret this as an Appeal to the People, and a declining of all Intercourse between His Majesty and Us; as if we thought it to no purpose to endeavour any more to give him Satisfaction, and without expecting any longer our Answer, under the Name of a Message from his Majesty to both Houses of Parliament, they themselves have indeed made an Appeal to the People, as the Message it self doth in a manner grant it to be, offering to join issue with us in that way, and in the nature thereof, doth clearly shew it self to be no other. Therefore we shall likewise address our Answer to the Kingdom, not by way of Appeal, (as we are charged) but to prevent them from being their own Executioners, and from being perswaded under false colours of defending the Law, and their own Liberties, to destroy both with their own Hands, by taking their Lives, Liberties, and Estates out of their Hands, whom they have chosen and entrusted therewith, and resigning them up to some evil Counsellors about his Majesty, who can lay no other Foundation of their own Greatness, but upon the Ruin of this, and in it of all Parliaments, and in them of the true Religion, and the Freedom of this Nation: And these are the Men that would perswade the People, that both Houses of Parliament, containing all the Peers, and representing all the Commons of England, would destroy the Laws of the Land, and Liberty of the People, wherein besides the Trust of the whole, they themselves in their own Particulars have so great an Interest of Honour and Estate, that we hope it will gain little Credit with any, that have the least use of Reason, that such as must have so great a Share in the Misery, should take so much Pains in the procuring thereof, and spend so much Time, and run so many Hazards to make themselves Slaves, and to destroy the Property of their Estates; but that we may give particular Satisfaction to the several Imputations cast upon us, we shall take them in Order, as they are said upon us in that Message.
First, We are charged for the avowing of that Act of Sir John Hotham, which is termed unparalleled, and an high, and unheard of Affront unto His Majesty, and as if we needed not to have done it; he being able, as is alledged, to produce no such Commands of the Houses of Parliament.
Altho' Sir John Hotham had not an Order that did express every Circumstance of that Case, yet he might have produced an Order of both Houses, which did comprehend this Case, not only in the clear Intention, but in the very Words thereof; which knowing in our Consciences to be so, and to be most necessary for the Safety of the Kingdom, we could not but in Honour and Justice avow that Act of his, which we are confident will appear unto the World to be so far from being an Affront to the King, that it will be found to have been an Act of great Loyalty to his Majesty and to his Kingdom.
The next Charge upon us is, That instead of giving his Majesty Satisfaction, we published a Declaration concerning that Business, as an Appeal to the People, and as if our Intercourse with his Majesty, and for his Satisfaction, were now to no more purpose; which course is alledged to be very unagreeable to the Modesty and Duty of former Times, and not warrantable by any Precedents, but what ourselves have made.
If the Penner of this Message had expected a while, or had not expected that two Houses of Parliament (especially burthened, as they are at this time, with so many pressing and urgent Affairs) should have moved as fast as himself, he would not have said that Declaration was instead of an Answer to his Majesty, which we did dispatch with all the speed and Diligence we could, and have sent it to his Majesty by a Committee of both Houses, whereby it appears, That we did it not upon that ground, that we thought it was no more to any purpose to endeavour to give his Majesty Satisfaction.
And as for the Duty and Modesty of former Times, from which we are said to have varied, and to want the Warrant of any Precedents therein, but what ourselves have made. If we have made any Precedents this Parliament, we have made them for Posterity upon the same, or better grounds of Reason and Law than those were upon which our Predecessors first made any Forms: And as some Precedents ought not to be Rules for us to follow; so none can be Limits to bound our Proceedings, which may, and must vary according to the different Condition of Times. And for this Particular of setting forth Declarations for the Satisfaction of the People, who have chosen and intrusted us with all that is dearest to them, if there be no Example for it, it is because there were never any such Monsters before, that ever attempted to disaffect the People from a Parliament, or could ever harbour a Thought that it might be effected. Were there ever such Practices to poison the People with an ill Apprehension of the Parliament? Were there ever such Imputations and Scandals laid upon the Proceedings of both Houses? Were there ever so many and so great Breaches of Privilege of Parliament? Were there ever so many and so desperate Designs of Force and Violence against the Parliament and the Members thereof? If we have done more than ever our Ancestors have done, we have suffered more than ever they have suffered; and yet in Point of Modesty and Duty we shall not yield to the best of former Times, and we shall put this in issue, Whether the highest and most unwarrantable Proceedings of any of his Majesty's Predecessors do not fall short, and much below what hath been done to us this Parliament? And on the other side, Whether, if we should make the highest Precedents of other Parliaments our Patterns, there would be cause to complain of want of Modesty and Duty in us, when we have not so much as suffer'd such Things to enter into our Thoughts, which all the World knows they have put in Act?
Another Charge which is laid very high upon us (and which were indeed a very great Crime, if we were found guilty thereof) is, that by avowing this Act of Sir John Hotham, we do in Consequence confound and destroy the Title Act Interest of all his Majesty's good Subjects to their Lands and Goods, and that upon this ground his Majesty hath the same Title to his own Town of Hull, which any of his Subjects have to their Houses or Lands; and the same to his Magazine and Munition there, that any Man hath to his Money, Plate, or Jewels; and therefore that they ought not to have been disposed of without, or against his Consent, no more than the House, Land, Money, Plate, or Jewels of any Subject ought to be without, or against his Will.
Here that is laid down for a Principle, which would indeed pull up the very Foundation of the Liberty, Property, and Interest of every Subject in particular, and of all the Subjects in general, if one should admit it for a Truth, that his Majesty hath the same Right and Title to his Towns, and to his Magazine, (bought with the Publick Monies, as we conceive that at Hull to have been) that every particular Man hath to his House, Lands, and Goods; for his Majesty's Towns are no more his own, than his Kingdom is his own; and his Kingdom is no more his own, than his People are his own: And if the King had a Property in all his Towns, what would become of the Subjects Propriety in their Houses therein? And if he had a Propriety in his Kingdom, what would become of the Subjects Property in their Lands throughout the Kingdom? Or of their Liberties, if his Majesty had the same Right in their Persons, that every Subject hath in their Lands or Goods? And what should become of all the Subjects Interest in the Towns and Forts of the Kingdom, and in the Kingdom itself, if his Majesty might fell or give them away, or dispose of them at his Pleasure, as a particular Man may do with his Lands and with his Goods. This erroneous Maxim being infused into Princes, That their Kingdoms are their own, and that they may do with them what they will, (as if their Kingdoms were for them, and not they for their Kingdoms) is the Root of all the Subjects Misery, and of all the invading of their just Rights and Liberties. Whereas indeed they are only intrusted with their Kingdoms, and with their Towns, and with their People, and with the Publick Treasure of the Common-Wealth, and whatsoever is bought therewith: And by the known Law of this Kingdom, the very Jewels of the Crown are not the King's proper Goods, but are only intrusted to him for the Use and Ornament thereof, as the Towns, Forts, Treasure, Magazine, Offices, and the People of the Kingdom, and the whole Kingdom itself is intrusted unto him, for the Good and Safety, and best Advantage thereof And as this Trust is for the Use of the Kingdom, so ought it to be managed by the Advice of the Houses of Parliament, whom the Kingdom hath trusted for that purpose, it being their Duty to see it discharged, according to the Condition and true Intent thereof; and as much as in them lies, by all possible Means, to prevent the contrary: Which if it hath been their chief Care and only Aim, in the disposing of the Town and Magazine of Hull, in such manner as they have done, they hope it will appear clearly to all the World, that they have discharged their own Trust, and not invaded that of his Majesty's, much less his Property, which in this Case they could not do.
But admitting his Majesty had indeed had a Property in the Town and Magazine of Hull, who doubts but that a Parliament may dispose of any thing wherein his Majesty or any Subject hath a Right, in such a way, as that the Kingdom may not be exposed to Hazard or Danger thereby; which is our case in the disposing of the Town and Magazine of Hull. And whereas his Majesty doth allow this, and a greater Power to a Parliament, but in that sense only as he himself is a part thereof; we appeal to every Man's Conscience, that hath observed our Proceedings, whether we disjoined his Majesty from his Parliament, who have in all humble ways sought his Concurrence with us, as in this Particular about Hull, and for the removal of the Magazine there, so also in all other things. Or whether these evil Councils about him have not separated him from his Parliament, not only in distance of Place, but also in the discharge of this Joint-Trust with them for the Peace and Safety of the Kingdom in this, and some other Particulars.
We have given no Occasion to his Majesty to declare his Resolution with so much earnestness, that he will not suffer either, or both Houses by their Votes, without, or against his consent, to enjoin any thing that is forbidden by the Law, or to forbid any thing that is enjoin'd by the Law, for our Votes have done no such thing: And as we shall be very tender of the Law, (which we acknowledge to be the safeguard and custody of all publick and private Interests) so we shall never allow a few private Persons about his Majesty, nor his Majesty himself in his own Person, and out of his Courts, to be Judge of the Law, and that contrary to the Judgment of the highest Court of Judicature. In like manner, that his Majesty hath not refused to consent to any thing that might be for the Peace and Happiness of the Kingdom, we cannot admit it in any other sense, but as his Majesty taketh the Measure of what will be for the Peace and Happiness of the Kingdom, from some few ill-affected Persons about him, contrary to the Advice and Judgment of this Great Council of Parliament; and because the Advice of both Houses of Parliament, hath, through the Suggestions of Evil Counsellors, been so much undervalued of late, and so absolutely rejected and refused, we hold it fit to declare unto the Kingdom, (whose Honour and Interest is so much concerned in it) what is the Privilege of the Great Council of Parliament herein, and what is the Obligation that lieth upon the Kings of this Realm, to pass such Bills as are offered unto them by both Houses of Parliament, in the Name, and for the Good of the whole Kingdom whereunto they stand ingaged, both in Conscience and in Justice, to give their Royal Assent. In Conscience, in respect of the Oath that is or ought to be taken by the Kings of this Realm at their Coronation, as well to confirm, by their Royal Assent such good Laws as their People shall chuse, and to remedy by Law such Inconveniencies as the Kingdom may suffer, as to keep and protect the Laws already in being; as may appear both by the Form of the Oath upon Record, and in Books of good Authority, and by the Statute of 25 Edw. III. Intituled, The Statute of Provisors of Benefices. The Form of which Oath, and the Clause of that Statute concerning it, are as followeth:
Rot. Parlam. H. 4. N. 17.
Concedis justas Leges & Consuetudines esse tenendas, & promittis per te eas esse Protegendas, & ad Honorem Dei corroborandas, quas vulgus elegerit, secundum vires tuas?
Respondebit, Concedo & Promitto.