Historical Collections of Private Passages of State: Volume 4, 1640-42. Originally published by D Browne, London, 1721.
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Chap. VII. Of the King's Commission of Array; the Legality thereof controverted, and Passages or Rencounters between those that went to put the same in Execution, and others that acted upon the Ordinance of the Two Houses for settling the Militia, in the Months of June, July, and August, 1642.
As the Houses had passed an Ordinance for settling the Militia in such Hands as they could confide in, and divers of the Persons therein named began in several parts to put it in Execution; so on the other side, the King charging this Ordinance to be against Law, and requiring that none should yield Obedience thereunto, did issue forth his Commissions of Array to the respective Counties, appointing several Persons of Quality to Array, Train and Muster the People.
This Commission the two Houses declared to be unlawful; so that the same was not only much and learnedly controverted by Declarations, &c. but also the Persons in the Countries acting by these opposite Authorities, had many Bickerings one with another, of all which to give an account is the Subject of this Chapter.
The King's Commission of Array for Leicester, June 11th, 1642.
Carolus Dei Gratia Angliæ, Scotiæ, Franciæ & Hiberniae Rex, Fidei Defensor, &c. Charissimis Consanguineis nostris Hen. Com. Huntington, & Willielmo Com. Devon. necnon dilectis & fidelibus nostris Hen. Hastings, Armigero, Filio dicti Com. Huntington, Hen. Berkley, Georgio Villiers, Thomæ Burton, Baronett. Hen. Skipwith, Joanni Skeffington, & Richardo Halford Militibus & Baronettis, Wolstan Dixe, Richardo Roberts, Joan. Bale, Thomæ Hartop, Erasmo de la Fountain, & Willielmo Jones, Militibus; Hen. Hastingston, Georgio Ashly, & Joanni Pate Armigeris, at Vic. nostro Com. nostri Leicestr. pro tempore existenti, Salutem. Sciatis quod nos Malitia Inimicorum nostrorum. fi Regnum nostrum Augliae invadere pasumpserient (quod absit) Gratia vobis savente Divina resistere, ac pro Salvatione & Defensione nostri ac Regni praedicti, & Ligeorum nostrorum ejusdem disponere & ordinare volentes, ut tenemur, assignavimus vos, vel aliquos tres, vel plures vest. ad Arraiand. & Triand. oimnes & singulos Homines ad arma, ac Homines armatos & sagittarios in Com. praed commorantes infra Libertates, & extra ad armari faciend. omnes illos, qui de corpore sunt potentes & habiles ad armand. qui de suo proprio habent unde seipsos armare possunt, viz. quilibet corum juxta statum & facultates suas, & ad assidend. & apportionand. juxta ad visamentum & discretiones vestras, aut aliquorum trium, vel plurium vestrum, ac etiam ad distringend omnis illos, qui in Terris & Bonis sunt potentes, & pro debilitate corporum ad laborand impotentes ad inveniend juxta quantitatem Terrarum & Bonorum suorum, & prout rationabiliter portare poterunt (salvo statu suo) armatur. Hominibus ad arma, & hominibus armatis, ac Arcus & Sagittas, ita quod illi qui morabuntur, seu morari poterunt ad domum suam propriam in Patria sua super defensione ejusdem Regni contra Inimicos nostros, si periculum eveniat, non capiant vadia, ne, expensas pro mora sua apud domus suas praedict. & ad dictos Homines ad arma, ac Homines armatos, & Sagittarios sic Arraiatos & munitos continue in Arraiatione, ut in millenis, centenis & vicenis & alias prout conveniens fuerit, & necesse teneri & poni faciend. Assignavimus autem vos, aut aliquos tres, vel plures vestrum, quotum te praefatum Hen. Comitem Huntington, & in absentia tua te praefat. Willielmum Com. Devon. vel te praefat. Hen. Hastings, Filium preadicti Comitis Huntington unum esse volumus ad dictos Homines ad arma, ac Homines armatos et Sagittarios sic arraiat et munit, tam ad Costeram Maris, quam alia loca, ubi, ac quoties necesse fuerit, ad dictos Inimicos nostros expellend. et debelland. de tempore in tempus, cum aliquod periculum immineat mandad. et injungend. assignavimus etiam vos, aut aliquos tres, vel plures vestrum, ad Monstrum five Monstrationem corumdem Hominum ad arma, ac Hominum armatorum et sagittariorum de tempore in tempus, quoties indiguerit, diligenter faciendum et supervidendum ac etiam ad proclamand. ordinand. et diligenter examinand. quod omnes et singuli bujusmodi Homines ad arma, ac Homines armati et sagittarii in monstris hujusmodi armaturis suis propriis, et non alienis, armentur; Sub poena amissionis eorundem, exceptis duntaxat illis, qui adexpens. aliorum armari debent, ut pradict. est, et ad omnes et singulos, quos in hac parte inveneritis contrarios, seu Rebelles, arrestand. et capiend. et eos prisonis nostris committend. in eisdem moraturos, quousq; secundum legem inde deliberati fuerint, et ideo vobis districtus quo possumus super fide et legeantia, quibus nobis tenemini injungimus et mandamus, quod statim, visis, prasentibus, vos ipsos melius et securius quo poteritis arraiari et parari, et coram vobis ad certos dies et loca, quos videritis magis competentes et expedientes, & pro Populo nostro minus damnosos, omnes Homines in patria commorantes per quos Arraiatio et Munitio melius fieri et compleri poterunt, venire et vocari fac' et eos arraiari, armari et muniri, et eos sic arraiatos et munitos in arraiatione hujusmodi teneri faciatis, et insuper signa vocat. Beacons poni faciatis in locis consuetis, per quae Gentes Patriae de adventu Inimicorum nostrorum poterunt congruis temporibus praemuniri, et eosdem Homines sic arraiatos et munitos, cum periculum imminuerit, in defensionem Regui ac Patria pradict de tempore in tempus, tam ad Costeram Maris, quamalia loca, ubi magis necesse fuerit, duci faciat, vel aliqui tres, aut plures vestrum, quorum te prafat. Hen. Com. Huntington, & in absentia tua te prafat. Willielmum Com. Devon. vel te prafat. Hen. Hastings, Filium prad. Com. Huntington unum esse volumus, duci faciant, ut pradictum est, ita quod pro defectu defensionis, arraiationis, five ductionis dictorum Hominum, vel per negligentiam vestram damna Patriae pradict. per Intimicos nostros modo non eveniat ullo modo pro posse vestro. Damus autem universis & singulis Comitibus, Baronibus, Militibus, Majoribus, Ballivis, Constabulariis, Ministris & aliis Fidelibus & Ligeis nostris Com. praed (tam infra Libertates, quam extra) tenore praesentium firmiter in mandat. quod vobis, & cuilibet vestrum in omnibus, singulis praemissis faciend. & expland. intendentes sint, Consulentes & Auxiliantes & tibi prafta. Vic. quod ad certos dies & loca, quos ad hoc vos, vel aliqui tres, vel plures vestrum, at praedictum est, ordinaveritis, venire faciatis corum vobis, vel hujusmodi tribus, vel pluribus vestrum, ut pradictum est, omnes illos in Com. prad. per quos Arraiatio, Assessio & Ordinatio melius poterit fieri & compleri, & illis, quos pro Rebellione sua capi & arrestari contigerit, in prisona nostra Custod sicut pradictum est. In cujus rei Testimonium has presentes literas nostras fieri fecim. Patentes; teste meipso, undecimo die Junii, Anno Regni nostri decimo octavo.
The Copy of the King's Letter sent with the Commission of Array to Leicestershire.
'Right Trusty, and Right well-beloved Cousins, and Right trusty and well-beloved, We greet you well. Whereas it hath been declared by the Votes of both Houses of Parliament the 15th of March last. That the Kingdom hath of late, and still is in so evident and imminent danger, both from Enemies abroad, and a Popish discontented Party at home, that there is an urgent and inevitable necessity of putting our Subjects into a posture of Defence for the Safeguard both of Our Person and People; and that sithence divers Inhabitants of divers Counties have addressed their Petitions to that purpose. And whereas a small Number of both Houses (after it had been rejected by the Lords in a full House, and without Our Royal Assent, or the Opinion of the Judges concerning the Legality of it) have attempted by way of Ordinance, to put in Execution the Militia of the Kingdom, and to dispossess many of our ancient Nobility of the Command and Trust reposed in them by Us, and have nominated divers others who have no Interest, nor live near to some of the Counties to which they are nominated for the Lieutenancy, whereby they cannot be properly serviceable to the Counties wherewith they are entrusted; nor our People receive that Content and Security which we desire they should. To submit to the Execution of which Power by the way of Ordinance, without it were reduced into a Law by Act of Parliament established by our Royal Assent, were to reduce and expose our Subjects to a meer Arbitrary Government, which by God's Grace We shall never permit.
'We therefore considering that by the Laws of the Realm it belongeth to Us to order and govern the Militia of the Kingdom; have thereupon by our Proclamation of the 27th of May last, prohibited all manner of Persons whatsoever upon their Allegiance to muster, levy, or summon upon any Warrant, Order or Ordinance from one or both Houses of Parliament, whereunto we have not, or shall not give our express Consent to, any of the Trained-Bands, or other Officers without express Warrant under our Hands, or Warrant from Our Sheriff of the County grounded upon a particular Writ to that purpose under Our Great Seal. And considering that in ancient time the Militia of the Kingdom was ever disposed of by the Commissions of Array, and that by a particular Statute upon Record in the Tower, made in the Fifth Year of Henry the Fourth, by full Consent of the Prelates, Earls, Barons and Commons, and at their Suit, and by the Advice and Opinion of the Judges then had, such Commissions, were mitigated in respect of some Clauses, perilous to the Commissioners, and approved of for the time to come. And by the subsequent Records it appeareth, That all Our Royal Predecessors have continually exercised that Power by such Commissions, 'till of late time they have been discontinued by the Grants of particular Commissions of Lieutenancy, little differing in substance from the said Commissions of Array, against which the Houses it seems have taken some Exception. And tho' we are no way satisfied of the Illegality of them, Our Counsel being never heard in the Defence thereof; yet being willing to avoid all Exceptions at present, We have thought fit to refer it to that ancient legal way of disposing the Power of the Militia by Commissions of Array for Defence of Us, Our Kingdom and Our County; Authorizing you, or any three or more of you, to Array and Train Our People, and to apportion and assess such Persons as have Estates, and are not able to bear Arms, to find Arms for other Men in a reasonable and moderate proportion; and to conduct them so array'd, as well to the Coasts, as to other places, for the Opposition and Destruction of our Enemies in case of danger, as to your Discretions, or any three or more of you, shall seem meet, whereof you Henry Earl of Huntington, and in your absence, William Earl of Devonshire, or Henry Hastings, Esq; to be one. And being both confident in a great measure both of the Loyal Affections of Our People, and very tender to bring any unnecessary Burden or Charge on them by augmenting the number of the Trained-Bands: We do for the present only require that you do forthwith cause to be mustered and trained all the ancient Train'd-Bands and Freehold-Bands of the County, carefully seeing that they be supplied with able and sufficient Persons, and compleatly arm'd; unless you find that there be just cause, and that it shall be with the good liking of the Inhabitants for their own better Security to make any increase of their Number; and over such Bands to appoint and set such Colonels, Captains and Officers as you shall think most fit for the discharge of that Service; being such Persons as have considerable Interest in the County, and not Strangers. And in case of any Opposition, you are to raise the Power of the County to suppress it, and to commit all such Persons as are found rebellious herein into the Custody of our Sheriff; whose Care and Assistance We especially require. And that he shall from time to time issue forth such Warrants for the assembling of Our People at such Times and Places as by you shall be agreed on, according to the Trust reposed in him by Our said Commission. And We have authorized you our Commissioners, or any three of you, after such Array made, from time to time to train and take Musters of Our said Bands; and to provide Beacons and other Necessaries, for the better exercising of Our People, and discovery of sudden Invasions and Commotions. Of all which you Proceedings herein We expect a plenary and speedy account, according to the Trust reposed in you, and Authority given you by our Commission on that behalf.
Die Sabbathi, 18 Junii, 1642.
Resolved, &c. That all those that are Actors in the putting of the Commission of Array in Execution, shall be esteemed as Disturbers of the Peace of the Kingdom, and Betrayers of the Liberty of the Subject.
By the KING.
A Proclamation to inform all our loving Subjects of the Lawfulness of our Commissions of Array, issued into the several Counties of our Realm of England, and Dominion of Wales, and of the Use of them, and commanding them to obey our Commissioners therein named, in the Execution of their said Commissions.
'Whereas by the Laws of the Land, the ordering and governing of the Militia of the Kingdom, for the preventing and suppression of all Invasions and Rebellions, hath (as a most known and undoubted Right and Prerogative) belonged in all time solely to our Self, and our Progenitors, Kings of England: and accordingly we have heretofore awarded Commissions of Lieutenancy into the several Counties of this our Realm, for the governing and exercising of the Soldiery and Trained-Islands there, like as Queen Elizabeth, and our Dear Father, both of happy Memory, had done before Us; and therein (among other things) gave Power to the Commissioners in each County, to levy, call together, arm, array and muster our Subjects, inhabiting in the said several Counties, and to conduct and lead them against all our Enemies, and all Rebels and Traitors from time to time, as often as need should require.
'All which Commissions (altho' we did since the beginning of this Parliament grant the like for the County of York, to the now Earl of Essex, with the Privity of both our Houses of Parliament, and without Exception from either) have, without hearing any of our Counsel Learned, been since voted in our said Houses of Parliament to be illegal and void; the Reason whereof We have not yet been informed of, nor can imagine; for that neither any illegal Clause (if any such be) in those Commissions, nor any Excess or Abuse of their Authority by any Lieutenants, or their Deputies, in raising of Monies, Taxing of the Inhabitants, or otherwise, could by Law make void any such Powers as in themselves were lawful to be granted and put in Execution.
'And whereas in cases of Danger and Necessity, it had been more suitable to the condition of the Times, and the good liking of our Subjects, (who cannot be well pleased with any new ways, how specious soever) that our Houses of Parliament should have taken Orders that our Commissions of Lieutenancy (the course whereof had so long continued) should for the present have been put in Execution, at leastwise such part thereof, as was undeniably and unquestionably legal, and was sufficient for the Purposes before-mentioned; or that (according to the like Precedents in former Times) they would have desired us to have granted new Commissions of that nature, omitting such Clauses as might justly have been excepted against, which We would not have denied; and not to have called in so suddenly for those Commissions to be cancelled, as was done (tho' we know not by what Law) in our House of Peers: Yet notwithstanding, our two Houses of Parliament, instead of such our Commissions, under pretence of evident and imminent Danger, and urgent and inevitable Necessity of putting our Subjects into a posture of Defence, have made a late Order for the settling of the Militia, under the Name of an Ordinance, (which two or three several times had been refused by the major part of Peers) and being made not only without, but against our Consent, (the Reasons whereof are sufficiently known to all our Subjects) is not only without any one warrantable Precedent of former Times, (as We believe) but (as We are well assur'd) void in Law.
'Wherefore, out of the Care which We have of our People, left under the pretence of Danger, Necessity and want of Authority from Us to put them into a Military posture, they should be drawn and engaged in any Opposition against Us, or our just Authority; and that they may know they are by Us otherwise provided for, and secured against all just Causes of Fears and Dangers, and from any Force in a legal Way, (for We are so resolved to rule and govern our Subjects, according to our known Laws only) We have thought fit, for the present, hereby thus timely to publish and declare, That we have awarded into the several Counties of our Kingdom of England, and Dominion of Wales, our several Commissions of Array, thereby giving Power to several Persons of Honour, Reputation and Estate, in the said Counties, for the Safety and Defence of Us, our Kingdom and our good Subjects, from time to time, as it shall be needful, to Array, Train, Arm, and Muster our Subjects inhabiting in the said Counties; and in case of imminent Danger to conduct and lead them for the Destruction of our Enemies, and in the Defence of their Country and the Kingdom.
'Which Power of granting Commission sfor the Defence of Us and our Kingdoms, as it is inherent in Us, and inseparable from our Crown, so it hath been warranted by the Precedents of the like Commissions in all Ages, both before and since the Grant of the Great Charter by King Henry the Third, down to the very Time that Commissions of Lieutenancy were granted, and was agreed to be Legal by the two Learned Judges, Sir George Crook and Sir Rich. Hutton, (amongst all the rest) in their Arguments, which concluded on the Subjects part in our Exchequer-Chamber, in Mr. Hamden 's Case, as by the same (now since printed) may appear, together with divers particular Records in several Ages therein mentioned, to which many more may be added.
'And in these our Commissions, to prevent all manner of Exception, We have, in the Powers given to our Commissioners, in all Points followed that Commission of Array which was agreed upon by the King and both Houses of Parliament, after Conference with the Judges of the Realm, in the Fifth Year of King Henry IV. and was done upon the Desire of the Commons, to have some Alterations from former Commissions in certain over-strict Clauses; whereunto nevertheless no Exception was taken for the Legality, but the King's Assent acknowledged as an Act of great Grace, as appeareth by the Parliament-Rolls of that Year. Since which time, Commissions of Array have frequently issued for prevention of Danger, either of Enemies abroad or at home, (in both which respects our Houses of Parliament have voted this Kingdom to be in danger) the same being indeed the old ordinary way for the Preservation of the King and Kingdom, who must not delay their Preparation 'till such Danger break forth into Action and so perhaps prove too late. And these Commissions of Array were not discontinued, 'till by reason of the Commissions of the Lieutenancy (which in substance contained the Powers given by those Commissioners of Array) they came to be of little use.
'And whereas by the Statute of the 4th and 5th Years of the Reign of philip and Mary, King and Queen of England, it is Enacted, That if any Person or Persons, that shall be commanded generally or specially to Muster, afore any such as shall have Authority or Commandment for the same, by or from the King, or by any Lieutenant, Warden, or other Person or Persons authorized for the same, do willingly absent him or themselves from the same Musters, having no true and reasonable Excuse of Sickness, or other lawful Impediment; or at their appearance at such Musters, do not bring with them such their best Furniture, or Array and Armour, as he or they shall then have, for his or their Person, in readiness, that such Person or Persons, shall, for every such Default and Offence, incur such Penalties, and to be inflicted in such manner, as by the said Statute is limited, which Statute is in full Force.
'We do therefore by this our Proclamation, expresly Charge and Command all our Sheriffs, Justices of Peace, Mayors, Bailiffs, Constables, and all other our Officers, and other our loving Subjects of our several Counties of England and Dominion of Wales respectively, That they be Attending, Aiding, Assisting, Counselling, and at the Commandment of the said Commissioners of our several Counties respectively, in the Execution of their Commissions, as they will answer the contrary at their utmost perils.
'And altho' We can nothing doubt, that any of our loving Subjects shall or will oppose or hinder our said Commissioners in the Execution of their said Commissions, by putting in Execution any Power touching the Militia not warranted by our Authority, or otherwise disturbing our said Commisners in the Execution of our Service, considering the extream Danger wherein such Act may, upon the several Circumstances, by the strict Construction of Law involve them. Yet left any ill-affected Persons, too far presuming upon our Clemency, and in hope of Impunity or Pardon, should dare offend Us and our Laws, contrary to this our Proclamation, We do hereby declare to all our Subjects, That whosoever shall, after this our Proclamation published, do any thing in Opposition to our Commissioners, by disobeying their Commands according to Law, or putting in Execution any other Command concerning the Militia of our Kingdom, contrary to Law, We shall account them unworthy our Grace and Mercy, and such as must expect that Justice (how Penal or Capital soever it be) shall be done upon them according to their Demerits.
The Declaration of both Houses of Parliament, concerning the Commission of Array.
Whereas Information hath been given to the Lords and Commons assembled in Parliament, that a Commission hath lately issued out, under the Great Seal of England, directed to the Earls of Huntington and Devonshire, Henry Hastings, Esq; and others, commanding them to array all Men within the County of Leicester, according to their Estates and Abilities, and to charge them with Arms, at the Discretion of the Commissioners, or any three of them; and to destrain all those that are able, either in Lands or Goods, to find Arms: And such as by reason of Impotency are not able to serve in Person, to find Men at Arms, according to the Quantity of their Lands and Goods. And all such Persons so arrayed and armed, to cause to be trained and exercised, at the Pleasure of the said Commissioners, or any three of them: And the Persons so arrayed, to draw to the Coasts of the Sea, or elsewhere; and such as shall oppose or contradict the same Commission, to commit to Prison, and there to detain them, until they shall be delivered by Law.
And the said Lords and Commons are further informed, That together with the said Commission, a Letter under his Majesty's Hand was directed to the said Commissioners, declaring the Legality of the said Commission, to be grounded upon a Statute made in the 5th Hen. 4. not printed, with further Instructions to the said Commissioners, for putting the same Commission forthwith in Execution. And that divers Proclamations did issue forth, endeavouring to justify the Legality of the Commission; the Tenours of which Commission, Letter, Proclamation and Statute, the said Lords and Commons have caused to be annexed thereunto.
The said Lords and Commons are such aggrieved, and do think it strange, that his Majesty being still misled by the Suggestions of evil Counsellors, after so many Declarations, and solemn Protestations made to his Parliament and People, of his Resolution to rule and govern by the Laws of the Land, and to keep and maintain the same; And after so many Declarations made by both Houses of Parliament, of their Loyalty and Fidelity to his Majesty, and of their faithful Endeavours for the Preservation of his Majesty's Honour and Safety, and for the Welfare, Peace and Happiness of this Realm, should now be drawn to issue out such a Commission, so contrary to the Laws, and so full of Danger and Inconveniency to all his Majesty's Subjects; which, if admitted, will be a heavier Yoke of Bondage upon the People, than that of Ship-money, or any other illegal Charge, which hath been taken away this Parliament.
And for that it is pretended that the said Commission is warranted by the said Act of Parliament, made in the 5th Year of King Henry the 4th; The Lords and Commons have taken the same into Consideration, and find that the said Act of Parliament is no ground to warrant that Commission, or any other Commission of that Nature. And for the more clear Manifestation of the Truth thereof, they have caused that Act, as it is entered upon the Record, to be here with printed, and to declare the Reasons of their Resolutions herein. By the Preamble of that Statute it doth appear, that the sole End thereof was, to put out some Clauses and Words inserted in the Commission, that were grievous and dangerous, for the Commissioners, as appears by these Words in the beginning, viz. ` For the many Forfeitures, and divers other Clauses and Words comprised in the same, which were very grievous and hurtful for the Commissioners named in the same Commission in divers Counties of England, &c. And these Words in the latter End; `And that none of the said Commissioners, their Heirs, Executors, or Tenants, by reason of any Forfeitures, or Penalties, or any other things comprised, be, or hereafter be any ways molested grieved, endamaged, or impeached in any time to come, &c. And the Clauses that were cancelled, and put out of the said Commission, were only such as concerned the Commissioners; which appears by comparing the Commission corrected by the Commons, with the Commission that then was issued out, which is entered upon the Patent, Rol. 5. H. 4 P. 1. M. 28. Dorso; of which the Commons had a Copy delivered unto them, and the Clauses contained in the Copy delivered them, and cancelled by them, were these, scilicet. Et ad nos, & Concilium nostrum de numero hujusmodi hominum ad arma, & hominum Armatorum, & sagittariorum, nec non de toto facto vestro in hac parte, sub sigillis vestris, vel alicujus vestrum, citra Octab Sancti Hillarii, proxime futur', distincte & aperte certificand, sub forifactur omnium que nobis forisfacere potoritis, & prout vos ipsi responder volueritis, de dampnis & periculis, si qua per vestri defect & negligentiam (quod adsit) eveniant Then in the Conclusion, Scientes pro certo, quod si periculum, vel damp num, Regno nostro predicto in partibus illis, per inimicos nostros, pro defectu arrai. & defensionis, & ductionis hujusmodi exeunt, (quod absit) evenerit defectum & periculum hujusmodi vobis & negligentiae vestra, volumus & debemus reputare, & penitus assignare. And their Prayer in Conclusion was, That thereafter no Commission of Array might issue out otherwise, nor in other Words than were contained in the said Copy. And that the Commissioners, their Heirs, or Tenements, might not be molested or troubled: So that it is to be observed, the Commons did not desire any Amendment or Declaration, as to the Power of the Execution of the Commission, which surely did most concerm them and the Kingdom.
But touching that, they very well know, That by the Law of the Kingdom, and divers Acts of Parliament then in Force, no such Power could be exercised over them. For the Statute of Winchester, made the 13. E. 1. then in force, did declare the certain Proportion of Arms every Man was to have according to his Estate, in Land or Goods; and the times, and how often their Arms were to be viewed, and by whom, and in what manner their Defaults were to be punished. The Statute it self followeth in these Words, viz.
'And further it is commanded, That every Man have in his House Harness, to keep the Peace after the ancient Assize; that is to say, every Man betwixt fifteen Years of Age, and forty Years, shall be assessed and sworn to Armour, according to the Quantity of their Lands and Goods; that is, to wit, from 15 l Lands and Goods; forty Marks, that is, to wit, an Hawberk, a Brest-plate of Iron, a Sword, a Knife, and an Horse. And from 10 l. of Lands, and 20 Marks of Goods; a Hawberk, a Breast-plate of Iron, a Sword, and a Knife. And from 5 l. Lands, a Doublet, a Brest-plate of Iron, a Sword, and a Knife. And from forty Shillings Land and more, unto five Pounds of Land, a Sword, a Bow and Arrows, and a Knife. And he that hath less than forty Shillings yearly, shall be sworn to keep Gyfarms, Knives, and other less Weapons. And he that hath less than twenty Marks in Goods, shall have Swords, Knives, and other less Weapons, and all other that way, shall have Bows and Arrows out of the Forest, and in the Forest, Bows and Bolts. And that View of Armour be made every Year two times; and in all Hundreds and Franchises, two Constables shall be chosen to make the View of Armour: And the Constables aforesaid, shall be present before Justices, assigned for such Default as they do see in the Country about Armour, and of the Suits of Towns and High-ways; and also shall present all such as do lodge Strangers in uplandish Towns, for whom they will not answer, and the Justices shall present also at every Parliament unto the King such Defaults as they have found, and the King shall provide Remedy therein And from henceforth the Sheriffs take good heed, and Bailiffs within their Franchises and without, be they higher or lower that have any Bailiwick, Forrestry in Fee, or otherwise, that they shall follow the Cry with the County; and after as they are bounden, to keep Horses and Armour so to do. And if there be any that do not the Defaults shall be presented to the Justices assigned, and after by them to the King, as before is said, and the King shall provide Remedy. And the Statute made in the first Year of Edw. 3. car. 5. Stat M. 29. which followeth in these Words. Item, The King willeth, that no Man from henceworth shall be charged to arm himself otherwise than he was wont in the time of his Progeniters Kings of England: And that no Man be compelled to go out of his Shire but where Necessity requireth, and sudden coming of strange Enemies into the Realm, and that it shall be done as heretofore for Defence of the Realm declares the Law to be the same Effect with the former: For here it's declared no Man can be charged with Arms, otherwise than as in Time of the King's Progenitors, or compelled to go out of his County, but in Case of actual Invasion. And to the same Effect is the Statute made 25 E. 3. cap. 8. which followeth in these Words. `Item, It is accorded and assented, That no Man shall be constrained to find Men of Arms, Hoblers or Archers other than those which hold by such Services, if it be not by common Assent or Grant made in Parliament, for that is contrary to the Law of the Realm. And by another Act of Parliament made 4. H. 4. cap. 13. the former Acts of 1 E. 3. and 25 E. 3. are all confirmed, as may appear by the Statute taken out of the Parliament Roll it self, because that the printed Book doth not fully recite it, which followeth in these Words, viz.
'To the thrice Excellent, thrice Renowned, and thrice Gracious Sovereign, our Lord the King: We, your poor Commons pray, That the Statute made in the first Year of the Reign of the Noble King Edward, your Grandfather, containing, That none shall be distrained to go out of their Counties, but only for the Cause of Necessity, of sudden coming of strange Enemies into the Realm; and the Statute made in the 18th Year of the Grandfather, That Men of Arms, Hoblers and Archers chosen to go in the King's Service out of England, shall be at the King's Wages from the Day they depart out of the Counties were they were chosen. And also the Statute made in the 25th Year of the Reign of the said Grandfather, That none be compelled to find Men of Arms, Hoblers nor Archers, other than those which hold by such Services, unless it be by common Assent and Grant made in Parliament, shall be holden formally, and kept in all Points safe, without being broken in any manner; and that none of us the said Commons be distrained to go into Wales, or elsewhere out of the Realm, contrary to the Form of the Statute aforesaid. And that all the Commissions and Writs made contrary to the said Statutes, and all the Indictments and Accusations, Obligations and and Ties made by colour of the said Commissions or Writs, with all their Dependings and Circumstances thereof, may be revoked, cancelled, quashed, and disanulled for ever, as Things made against the Law, and that they may not be taken for an Example in time to come.
'The King confenteth to this Law with this, That always by Force or Colour of the Supplication, nor of any Statute thereupon to be made, the Lords, nor any other that have Lands or Possessions in the County of Wales, or in the Marches thereof, shall in no wise be excused of their Service and Devoiers due of their said Lands and Possessions, nor of any other Devoier or Things whereto they or any of them be especially bound to our said Lord the King, though that the same Lords and others have other Lands and Possessions within the Realm of England, nor that the Lords or other, of what Estate or Condition soever they be, that hold by Escuage, or other Services due to the King, any Lands and Possessions within the said Realm, be in no wife excused to do the Service and Devoiers due of the said Lands and Possessions; nor that the Lords, Knights, Esquires, nor other Persons of what Estate or Condition they be which hold, and have of the Grant or Confirmation of our said Lord the King, Lands, Possessions, Fees, Annuities, Pensions, or other Yearly Profits, be not excused to do their Service to the Lord the King, in such manner as they are bound because of the Lands, Possessions, Fees, Annuities, Pensions, or Profits aforesaid. So that the Statutes before-mentioned were all confirmed by the Parliament, held not full one Year before this Statute of 5. Hen. 4. And by these Acts it clearly appeareth, That the King could not by the Law give Power to impose Arms upon the Subjects at Pleasure, or to compel them to be drawn out of their Counties.
'And therefore the Commons of the Parliament of 5. Hen. 4. many whereof very probably served in the immediate Parliament before, when the Statutes aforesaid were confirmed, knew very well that the Commission of Array represented to them, could not bind them that had the Law and Strength of so many Acts of Parliament to protect them. But because the former Acts of Parliament did provide Remedy only for the Persons that were to be commanded, and not for the Commissioners that were to put those Commands in Execution, upon very great Pains. The Commons, for the Indemnity of those Persons, who under colour of those Commands, might probably be troubled and vexed by Fines or Imprisonments, thought it necessary to secure them, as well as themselves; and therefore pray'd that the Penal Clauses touching the Commissioners might be put out. And though many Commissions of Array did afterwards issue forth in the times of Hen. 4. Hen. 5. and Hen. 6. yet did not any Issue agreeable in Words and Manner with that corrected Commission, as may appear by the Patent Rolls of those times; and the very next Commission that issued out after 5. H. 4. which was in the time of 6. H. 4. and is entered upon the Patent-Roll 6. H. 4. M. 15. Dorso, did not agree either in Words or Matter with that of 5. H. 4. and most of the Commissions that afterwards were issued vary from that, even in Substance; and assuredly had it been conceived in those times that the Form of the Commission agreed upon 5. H. 4. and there entred, had been by that Parliament enacted, they would not have issued out so many Commissions, especially in 6. H. 4. being the next immediate Year, of different Words and different Matters, which clearly made them void by that Statute of 5. H. 4. for the Statute doth ordain, That no Commission of Array should then after issue out otherwise, or in other Words than the Copy agreed upon, whereby all Commissions in other Words or other manner issued would be void, and not warranted by that Law, had it enacted that Commission; and that the Law then was, `That no Person could be compelled to furnish and provide Arms and Horses, and go out of his County otherwise than is declared by the afore-recited Act of Parliament, doth not only appear by those Statutes, but by several Acts of Parliament made after 5. H. 4. The Statute made in the fourth and and fifth Years of Philip and Mary, cap. 2. repeals all former Statutes concerning the finding of Arms, and all Penalties and Forfeitures touching the same; and by that Act settled the Proportions of Men, Horses and Arms that every Man was to find, according to the Value of their respective Estates, and sets down the Penalties and Forfeitures of such as should disobey. And this Law continued in force until the first Year of King James; but by a Statute made that Year, Cap 25 the last mentioned Statute of the fourth and fifth of Philip and Mary (probably because of the great Proportion of Arms it did impose) was repealed, and by that Repeal the former Statute of 13. Ed. 1. was again revived; for that the Statute of the fourth and fifth of Philips and Mary that had repealed that Law, was repealed; and afterwards in the Parliament 21 Jac. cap. 28 the Statute of 13. E. 1. cap. 6. and of 33. H 8. cap. 5. were both of them repealed, and then admitting the Commission of Array, as to finding of Arms juxta statum & Facultates, to be established by 5. H. 4. which might have some Colour to be Legal, as to that part for finding of Arms grounded upon the Statute of 13. E. 1. for that Statute which then was in force did enact the finding of Arms, juxta statum & facultates, in manner as there is expressed; yet when the Statute of 13. Ed. 1. is repealed, then that Commission is likewise repealed and become unwarrantable.
Now it is not probable that the Parliament of the first of King James would have repealed the Statute of the fourth and fifth of Philip and Mary, and that of the 21st Year of King James would repeal the Statute of 13 E 1 and 33 H. 8. which in a moderate manner did proportion the Arms every Man was to find in certainty, and suffer an Act of Parliament to continue, that did establish a Power in the King without limitation, not only to impose Arms, but to command the Persons of the Subjects at pleasure, for such is the Power of the Commission of Array. And they had shewed very little Care of their own and the Subjects Liberty in the Parliament of the first Year of King James, to repeal the Statute of the fourth and fifth of Philip and Mary, that had repealed all former Statutes, Penalties, and Forfeitures touching finding of Arms, whereby (without question) the Commission of Array (admitting it to be established by Parliament) was repealed; and thereby to revive the Power of that Commission, which would have subjected the People to far greater Bondage. And surely had the Commission of Array been authorized by Act of Parliament, whereby Power is given to charge all forts of Men without Distinction with Arms at the Discretion of the Commissioners, without limitation, and to train and exercise at pleasure without restraint, either of Time or Place; it was to little purpose to make the Statute of the fourth and fifth of Philip and Mary, Cap 3. whereby the Penalty of ten Days Imprisonment, or the Payment of Forty Shillings is imposed upon such as do not appear at Musters, being summoned thereunto by the King's Commissioners, authorized for that purpose: And the Commissioners of Lord-Lieutenants, and Deputy-Lieutenants, so grievous to the People, and declared illegal in Parliament, had not been so often issued, and so much pressed upon them. If the Commission of Array, not much differing from it in Power, and not at all less grievous to the Subject, might by the Warrant and Authority of the Laws of the Realm have supply'd their Room.
But if all that hath been said had been omitted, the Illegality of this Commission is sufficiently cleared by two Statutes made in the King's Majesty's Reign that now is; the one being the Petition of Right, confirmed this Parliament, and the other enacted this present Parliament. For in the Petition of Right, the Lords and Commons do amongst other Things) set forth, That by the good Laws and Statutes of this Realm, the Subjects have inherited this Freedom, That they should not be compelled to contribute to any Tax, Tallage, Aid, or other like Charge, not set by common Consent in Parliament, then they complain, That divers Charges have been laid and levied upon the People in several Counties by Lord Lieutenants, Deputy-Lieutenants, Commissioners for Musters, Justices of Peace, and others by Command and Directions from his Majesty, or his Privy-Council, against the Laws and free Customs of the Realm, so that the Law there declared was, That none could be compelled to contribute to any Tax, Tallage, Aid, or other like Charge but by Consent in Parliament: The breach of that Law to be, for the divers Charges were laid upon the People by Lords-Lieutenants, Commissioners for Musters, and others, by Command or Directions from his Majesty, which comprehends the Case in Question: For here is a Tax or Charge imposed upon the People, by compelling them to find Arms. This Charge is imposed by Command and Direction from his Majesty, for it is by Commission under the Great Seal, and all this without the Consent of the Lords and Commons in Parliament; so within the Words of the Petition of Right. And it is very well known, and it doth sufficiently appear, that the Charges there mentioned to be laid by Lords-Lieutenants, and Deputy-Lieutenants, where the charging of the Subjects with Arms against Law, by colour of their Commission from his Majesty. The other Statute made this Parliament, entituled, An Act for the better raising and levying of Soldiers for the present Defence of the Kingdoms of England and Ireland: In the Preamble declares in these Words, viz. `Whereas by the Laws of this Realm, none of his Majesty's Subjects ought to be impressed or compelled to go out of his County to serve as a Souldier in the Wars, except in case of necessity, of the sudden coming in of strange Enemies into the Kingdom; or except they be otherwise bound by the Tenure of their Lands or Possessions.
By divers Acts of Parliament, made in the Times of King Edward the First, King Edward the Third, and confirmed by a Statute in the Fourth Year of Henry the Fourth, the Subject was not compeliable to find any other Arms than was declared by those Statutes; or to go out of their County, but in case of actual Invasion by Foreign Eenemies. And by an express Clause of the said Statute of Confirmation, none of the People were to be distrained to go into Wales or elsewhere, against the Form of the said Statutes. And that all the Commissions and Writs, made contrary to the said Statutes, and all Indictments, Accusations, Bonds, and Things done by colour of the said Commissions or Writs, with all their Dependencies and Circumstances, should be revoked, cancelled, quashed, and made void for ever, as Things done against the Law; and that they should not be drawn in Example in Time to come
'Then in October following, divers Commissions, expresly contrary to those Statutes issued out to several Counties of this Realm. In Hillary Term next following that October, another Parliament was called, and then a Copy of that Commission was delivered to the Commons, who complained only of divers dangerous Clauses contained in the same that concerned the Commissioners, for whom no Provision at all was made by any the former Acts of Parliament, and those Clauses only put out by the Commons, who desire that no Commission thereafter should issue out otherwise, or in other Words than are contained in the said Copy. But take no further care of themselves, knowing very well, that as to the Power of charging them with Arms, Training, and Exercising of them, and commanding them out of the Countries, the same was sufficiently provided for in the Parliament before being, all within the compass of a Year, for that Parliament was summoned in Michaelmas 4 H. 4. And it is to be observed, That the Commission of Array awarded before that Parliament was, at, or about the very Time the Kingdom was invaded by Foreign Enemies. The French having assaulted the Isle of Wight, and burned Plymouth; and the Scots having entred the North Parts of the Kingdom, which probably was the Reason the Commons did not complain against the issuing of that Commission; but as they do not complain, so do they not give it any Establishment by Parliament.
'Then that Statute of Phil. and Mary was repealed, 1 Jac. whereby all the former Laws were again revived; then the Statutes of 13 E. 1. and 33 H. 8. were repealed by 21 Jac. So that the Pretence of the Legality of the said Commissions, endeavoured to be justified by the afore-mentioned Proclamation, doth now appear vain and unwarrantable.
'And though by the said Proclamation it is alledged, that the Power of granting such Commissions for the Defence of the King and Kingdom, is inherent to the Crown, and warranted by Precedents of the like Commissions in all Ages, both before and since Magna Charta. The Penner of that Proclamation must produce those Precedents, and make void divers Acts of Parliament herein before quoted that prove the contrary, or surely he cannot expect to be believed.
'It is true, some Precedents he may produce of Commissions of Array, before 5 H. 4 For divers issued out in divers Kings Reigns, and for the most part they were warranted by particular Acts of Parliament. For 13 E. 3. it appeareth by the Alncan. Roll. M. 8, 15. that divers Commissions of Array did issue; but 16 Dors. those Commissions were warranted by an Act of Parliament made that Year for that purpose, as appears by the Parliament Roll. 13 E. 3. 1, 2. N. 39. And the next Year after, divers Commissions of the like Nature did issue forth, and a special Act of Parliament to warrant the same, as appeareth by the Parliament Roll. 14 E. 3. 1, 2. N. 36, and 41. And in the Roll of Scotland, 14 E. 3. N. 6. 22, 47, 50, 53, 54 and 14 E. 3. 3 M. 2. Dorso.' But how far this may warrant the Legality of the Commission in question, let the World judge.
'Neither can he find any Opinion of Sir George Crook, or Sir Richard Hutton, in their Arguments of Mr. Hambden 's Case, to prove the Legality of the Commission in question. And it is much wondered how the Penner of that Proclamation can warrant that Commission by the Statute of the 4th and 5th of Phil. and Mary, Cap. 3. or where in that Statute he finds any Power to compel Men, against their Wills, to provide Arms to Train and Muster at pleasure; to be commanded out of their Counties, and to be imprisoned during pleasure It is true, by that Statute it is ordained, That if any Person that shall be commanded to Muster, before any Person authorized for the same by Commission from the King, do absent himself, or do not bring with him his best Furniture or Array, as he then shall have in readiness he shall be imprisoned for ten Days, or pay 40 s. But the Power to charge him with Arms, or to command to Exercise and Train, or to imprison him for Disobedience during Pleasure; the Penner of that Proclamation must find some where else, for he cannot find it in that Statute.
Upon all which it followeth, that the Commission of Array now lately issued forth, is not warranted by any Act of Parliament, is contrary to the Law and Customs of the Realm, destructive to the Liberty and Property of the Subject, contrary to the Petition of Right, and the said Statute made this present Parliament.
Rotulus Parliamenti tent': Apud Westmonasterium in Crastino Sancti Hillarii, Anno Regni Regis Henrici Quarti, post conquestum Quinto.
Item: Touchant la Commission de Larraie, pur les piusours forfaitures, & autres diverses clauses & paroles comprises en ycel, que feurent trop grevouses damageouses, & perillouses pur les Commissioners, nomez en m' la Commission es diverses Countees Dengleterre; dout la copy feust liveree as ditz Commons pur ent estre advisez, & de le corriger solenc' leur entencions. Memes les Commons eue sur ceo deliberation & advys, firent canceller' certenis clausis & parols comprisez en ycelle, & prierent au Roy que desore enavant nul Commission de Larraie isseroyt autrement, ne en autres parols que nest contenez en la dic' copy; & que des ditz Commissioners, lur Heires, Executors, ou Terretenants per cause daucuns forfaitures, ou peynes ou aucuns autres choses comprisez en la dic' Commission, soyt ou soient desore aucuncement molestez, grevez, endamagez, ou empeches en aucun temps advenir; Quel prier nostre dic' Sieur le Roy, de L'advis de Sieurs, eue sur communication ouesque les Judges du Royalme, most graciousment ottroia en Parliament: de quel copie le tenure sensute en cestes paroles.
The Copy of the Statute of 5 Hen. 4. whereby the Commission of Array is supposed to be warranted, translated into English.
Item: Touching the Commission of Array, for the many Forfeitures, and divers other Clauses and Words comprised in the same, which were grievous, hurtful, and dangerous for the Commissioners named in the same Commission, in divers Counties in England; the Copy whereof was delivered to the said Commons to be thereupon advised, and to correst it according to their Intentions: The said Commons having had Deliberation and Advice upon it, caused certain Clauses and Words comprised in the same to be cancelled; and prayed the King, that hereafter no Commission of Array issue out otherwise, not in other Words than are contained in the said Copy; and that none of the said Commissioners, their Heirs, Executors, or Tenants, by reason of any For-seitures, or Penalties, or any other Things comprized in the said Commission; be, or hereafter be any ways molested, grieved, endamaged, or impeached in any Time to come: Which Prayer our said Lord the King, by the Advice of the Lords, having hereupon Communication with the Judges of the Kingdom, most graciously granted in Parliament: Of which Copy the Tenour followeth in these Words:
Dilectis & fidelibus suis Thomœ Sackvill, Johanni Castellon, Johanni Reynes, Johanni Teringham, Richardo Darches, Willielmo Molyns, Johanni Boys, Edmundo Hampden, Simoni Darches, Rogero Dayrell, Rogero Chinœ, Edmundo Brudenel, Johanni barton, Seniori, & Richardo Wyott, at vic' nostro Buck. salutem Scratis. quod cum qaidam inimici nostri Regnum nostrum Angliœ, cum posse non modico, presentibus treugis non obstantibus, jam tarde hostiliter ingressi suerint; & in diversis partibus ejusdem Regni cumbusserent Nos malitiae hujusmodi inimicorum nostrorum si regnum nostrum, praedic' iterato invadere presumpserint, quod absit gratia nobis savente divina, resistere, ac pro salvatione & defensione nostri, ac Regni praedicti, & ligeorum nostrorum ejusdem disponere & ordinare volentes, ut tenemur, Assignavimus vos conjunctim & divisim ad arraiandum & triandum omnes & singulos homines ad arma, ac homines armatos, & Sagittarios in Com' praedict' commorantes infra libertates, & extra; & ad armari faciendum omnes illos qui de corpore sunt potentes & habiles ad armandum, qui de suo proprio habent, unde seipsos amare possunt; videlicet, quilibet eorum juxta statum & facultates suas, & ad offidendum, & apporciand', juxta avisament', & discretions vestras; ac etiam ad distrigend' omnes illos qui in terris, & bonis sunt potentes, & pro debilitate corporum, ad laborandum. impotentes, ad inventendum juxta quantitatem terrarum, & bonorum suorum, & prout rationabiliter portare ponerunt, Salvo statu suo, armaturas hominibus ad arma, & hominibus armatis, ac arcus & sogittas: Ita quod illi qui morabuntur, seu morari poterunt ad domum suam propriam in patria sua, super defensionem ejusdem Regni, contra inimicos no stras, (si periculum eveniat) non capiant vadia nec expensas pro mora sua apud domus suas praed & ad dictos homines ad arma ac homines armatos & Sagittarios sic arraiatos & munitos, continue in arraiatione, ut in millenis centen & vintenis & alias prout conveniens suerit & necesse te neri & poni faciend & eos tam ad costeram Maris quam alia loca ubi & quoties necesse fuerit, ad dictos inimicos nostros expellend debelland' & destruend' de tempore in tempus cum aliq' periculum immineat, mandand & injungend' & ad monstrum sive ad monstrationem eorundem hom' ad arma ac hominum armatorum, ac Sagittar' de tempore in tempus quotiens indiguerit diligenter faciend & super intend', ac etiam ad Proclamand or dinand' & diligenter examinand quod omnes & singuli hujusmodi homines ad arma & homines armati & Sagittarii in monstris hujusmodi armaturis suis propriis, & non alienis armentur, sub poena amissionis eorund, exceptis duntaxat illis qui ad expensas aliorum armari debent, ut praedict' est; ceptis duntaxat illis qui ad expensas aliorum armari debent, ut praedict' est: & ad omnes & singulos quos in hac parte inveneritis contrarios seu rebelles, arrestand & capiend' & eos in prisonis nostris committend' in eisdem mkoratur quousque pro eorum punitione aliter duuxerimus or dinand': Et ideo vobis & cuilibet vestrum destrictius quo possumus Super fide & ligeancia quibus nobis tenemini injungimus & mandamus quod statim visis praesentibus, vos ipsos melius & securius quo poteritis arraiari & parari, & coram Vobis ad certos dies & loca quos viderttis magis competentes & expedientes. & pro populo nostro minus dampnesos omnes homines in Patria commorentes per quos arraiatto & munitio hujusmodi teneri fac'. Et insu per singna vocata B.acons poni fac' in locis consuctas per quae gentes patriae de adventu inimicorum nostr' poternat congruis temporibus premuniri, & eosdem homines sic arraiatos & munitos com periculum imminnerit, in de fensione Regni & patriae prediae de tempore in tempus, tam ad costeram Maris, quam alia loca ubi magis necesse fuerit. duci fac'. Ita quod pro defecta defensionis, arraiationis, five ductionis, dictorum hominum, vel per negligentiam vestram Dampna Patriae praedic' per inimicos nostros amodo non eveniant ullo modo pro posse vestro. Damus aute Universis, & singulis Comitibus, Baronibus, Militibus, Majoribus, Ballikvis, Constnbulariis, Mini stris, & aliis fidelibus & ligeis nostris Com' praed tam infra libertates quam extra, tenore praesentium firmiter in mandatis quod vobis & cutlibet vestrum in omnibus & singulis praemissis faciend' & explend intendentes sint, consulentes & auxiliantes:L & tibi praefat' vic' quod ad certos dies & loca quos ad hoc ordinaverites venire fac' eoram vobis omnes illos in Com'; praed' per quos arraiacio, affessio & ordinatio melius poterunt fieri & compleri, & illos quos pro Rebellione sua capi & arrestari contigerit, in priso nostra custodiatis, sicut praedictum est. In cujus rei, &c. T. R. apud Westmox' xx. Die Octobris.
To this Declaration of the Two Houses, his Majesty replied, and the Houses rejoined; which being very large, are referred for the Appendix.
On Saturday, June the 4th, 1642. the Earl of Stamford, (appointed by the Two Houses of Ordinance for settling the Militia, Lord-Lieutenant of Leicestershire,) came to Leicester, and issued out Warrants to all the Head-Constables, to summon all the Trained-Bands; and desired all the private Men within their several Divisions, to appear before him or his Deputies, at the Town of Leicester on Wednesday following.
The very same Saturday came a Messenger from York with a Writ to the Sheriff, to publish his Majesty's Proclamation to the contrary: Yet the Warrants being sent out, the Country came in to the Earl, who appointed to Muster them at five several Places of the County, on so many distinct days, for their greater- Ease and Conveniency Whilst he was doing this, Sir Richard Hawford, Sir John Bale, John Pate, Esq; and others, had prevailed with the Mayor or Leicester to let a Guard upon the Magazine left there; whereupon the Earl, accompanied with the Lord Ruthen, Sir Arthur Hazlerig, &c. hasted thither, and removed the said Magazine, first to a strong Tower called Newarks-Gate, and afterwards to the Earl of Stamford 's House.
On Wednesday, June the 15th, the Earl of Huntington 's Son, Henry Hastings, Esq. (in the before-recited Commission of Array, named) arrived at Leicester with his said Commission; and the next Day caused the Under-Sheriff (in the absence of the High-Sheriff) to send forth Warrants in the High-Sheriff's Name, to the whole County, That as well the Trained-Soldiers, as private Men, and the Clergy, should come thither on the Wednesday following, to be mustered according to his Commission.
On Monday following, the Earl of Stamford set a Guard about his House of 150 of his Neighbours, Tenants, and Servants. On Tuesday, early in the Morning, a Messenger, by Warrant from the Two Houses, did Attach the Under-Sheriff, for sending forth Warrants, by virtue of the Commission of Array, and with a sufficient Guard carried him up to Westminster. That Afternoon Mr. Hastings went to Loughborough, and sent out other Warrants himself, to Summon all the Towns near him to come in thither next Morning; and being Master of certain Cole-Mines, he caused all his Horses belonging to the Carriages, to be in a readiness, and raised 100 Colliers out of Derbyshire, whom he armed with Pikes, Musquets, and Calievers; and with them, and what other Friends and Followers he could make, marched, with Drums and Colours, towards Leicester; and being come within Three Miles thereof, caused Powder, Match and Bullet, to be delivered amongst them; and ordered the Musqueteers to charge with Powder and Ball, and march with lighted Matches; and in this Posture led them into Leicester.
The Earl of Stamford had Intelligence of his March; and being furnish'd with 150 Musqueteers, and twenty good Horse, well mounted with Carabines and Pistols, and the Country generally at his Devotion, could have laid an Ambuscade, and cut them off by the Advantage of the way: But he was loth to begin a War, and therefore chose rather to stand upon his own Guard at Home. Mr. Hastings drawing his Company out into the Field, few of the Trained-Bands meeting him, according to his Summons, made a Speech, and began to read his Commission of Array, But the High-Sheriff caused the Votes of the Parliament against that Commission to be read; and the Messenger from the Two Houses attached the said Mr. Hastings, and several other the Commissioners that were with him; but they were rescued from him, and Two Butchers throwing Mr. Hastings on Horseback into his great Saddle, he rode with his Company to his Inn, and shut up the Gates; and hearing what Men the Lord Stamford had in readiness, and concluding, that the Sheriff would require his Aid, about Midnight left the Town; but his People lost most of their Arms, for by Directions from the Earl of Stamford, the House-keepers, whilst they were asleep, seized on their Arms, which were sent to the said Earl's House, viz one great Saddle, three Petronels, about an hundred Pikes, one Launce, above sixty Musquets and Calievers, about twenty Swords, and four long Pieces of about seven Foot in length. For this Action, the Earl of Stamford was proclaimed Traitor by the King, but justified by the Two Houses.
By the King.
A Proclamation against the forcible seizing, or removing, any the Magazine or Ammunition of any County; and concerning the Execution of the Militia within this Kingdom.
'Whereas by our Proclamation of the 27th of May last, in pursuance of, and according to the Laws and Usages of this Realm, we did, in our Care of the Peace of the Kingdom, command all our Sheriffs, and all Colonels, Lieutenant-Colonels, Serjeants-Majors, Captains, Officers and Soldiers belonging to the Trained-Bands of this our Kingdom; and all High and Petty Constables, and other Officers and Subjects, not to muster levy, raise or march, or to summon or warn upon any Warrant, Order or Ordinance from one or both Houses of Parliament (whereto we had not, or should not give our express Consent) any of our Trained-Bands, or other Forces, to raise, muster, or march, or exercise without express Warrant under our Hand, or Warrant from our Sheriff of the County, grounded upon a particular Writ to that purpose under our Great Seal. And we did thereby publish, in case any of our Trained-Bands should rise or gather together contrary to that our Command, we would then call them in good time to a strict account, and proceed legally against them as Violators of the Laws and Disturbers of the Peace of the Kingdom.
'And whereas we did likewise by our Proclamation of the 18th day of June last, for the Reasons therein expressed, charge and command all our Officers and Ministers, that they should use their utmost Endeavours for the suppressing of all Levies and Forces raised or to be raised without or against our Consent; as also all our other loving Subject, that they should be attending, aiding and assisting our said Officers and Ministers therein.
'And whereas we have awarded in the several Counties of our Kingdom of England and Dominion of Wales our several Commissions of Array, thereby giving power to several Persons of Honour, Reputation and Estate in the said Counties, for the Safety and Defence of us, our Kingdom, and our good Subjects from time to time, as it shall be needful, to Array, Train, Arm and Muster our Subjects inhabiting in the said Counties, and in case of imminent Danger, to conduct and lead them for the Destruction of our Enemies, and in Defence of our Country and Kingdom; whereof by our Proclamation of the 20th day of June last, we gave notice to all our Subjects, and did thereby further charge and command all our Officers and Ministers, and other our loving Subjects, that they be attending, aiding, and assisting, counselling, and at the Commandment of the Commissioners, as they would answer the contrary at their utmost Perils; and we did thereby declare, That whosoever, after that our Proclamation published, should do any thing in Opposition of our said Commissioners by disobeying their Commands, according to the Law, or putting in execution any other Command concerning the Militia of our Kingdom contrary to Law, we should account them unworthy of Grace and Mercy; and such as must expect that Justice (how penal or capital soever it be) should be done upon them according to their Demerits.
'Since which time We understand, some ill-affectted Persons intending the disturbance of the Peace of this Kingdom, and the weakning and impairing of our Strength, under colour and pretence of some Order or pretended Ordinance of one or both Houses of Parliamant, without Our Consent, or without any Commission or Warrant from Us, have in great numbers forcibly seized upon, and taken into their own Hands and Power some part of the Magazine and Ammunition, provided and placed for the Safety and Defence of this Kingdom, and carried the same, from the place where the same was by common Consent formerly laid up, to their own Houses or Possessions; and have also taken into their possessions, and disposed at their pleasures the Arms of divers of the Trained-Bands without their Consent, whereby they are unarmed (what occasion soever shall happen) for the Defence of Us and Our Kingdom; and have threatned and endeavoured to arrest, apprehend, and imprison, or procure Warrants for the apprehension, arresting and imprisoning of some of our Subjects, for obeying some of our said Commissioners in their Commands, according to the Tenors of their said Commissions, or for endeavouring to suppress Levies or Forces raised without our Consent, or for refusing to obey the Orders, or pretended Ordinances of one or both Houses of Parliament, made without our Consent, concerning the Militia of Kingdom, which We cannot interpret to be less than Endeavours (as much as in them lieth) of levying War against Us, and discouraging our Subjects from assisting Us in the just and necessary Defence of our Self and Kingdom.
'We do therefore by this Proclamation expresly charge and command all our Sheriffs, Justices of the Peace, Mayors, Bailiffs, Constables, and all other our Officers and Subjects whatsoever, upon their Allegiance, and as they tender the Peace of this Kingdom, not to seize, remove, displace, or intermeddle with the Magazine or Ammunition of or belonging to the several respective Counties of this our Kingdom of England, or Dominion of Wales, or any of them, or any part thereof, upon any such Order or Ordinance made by one or both Houses of Parliament, whereunto we have not, or shall not first give our express Consent.
'And we do likewise charge and command all our said Officers and Ministers, and other our Subjects whatsoever, that they use their utmost Endeavours (as in their Duties they are bound) for the arresting and apprehending of all such Persons as shall with any manner of Force by colour of any such Order or Ordinance made or to be made by either or both Houses of Parliament, without or against our Consent, detain or keep any Magazine, remove, displace, or shall hereafter under colour of such Order or Ordinauce made or to be made, seize, remove, displace, or intermeddle with the Magazine or Ammunition of or belonging to the several and respective Counties of this our Kingdom of England, or Dominion of Wales, or any of them, or any part thereof, or with the Arms of any of our Trained-Bands there; or as Commissioners or Commanders, shall hereafter put in Execution any such Order or Ordinance made, or to be made, by either or both Houses of Parliament, without our Consent, concerning the Militia, by Levying, Arraying, Training or Mustering any of our Subjects, or who shall by colour of any such Order or Ordinance of either or both Houses of Parliament, made or to be made, apprehend or arrest any of our Subjects, for endeavouring to suppress any Levies or Forces raised or to be raised without our Consent, or for refusing to obey the said Orders, or pretended Ordinance, touching the Militia, and also for the arresting and apprehending of all such Persons, as for the advancing or countenancing of the Execution of any such Order or Ordinance, made or to be made without our Consent concerning the Militia, shall actually endeavour to apprehend or arrest any of our Subjects, for obeying our Commissioners of Array in their lawful Commands, according to the Tenour of their said Commissions respectively, and the said Offenders to arrest and apprehend, to carry to the common Goal of the said County, where the said Offenders shall be so apprehended or arrested, there to remain 'till they shall be delivered by due course of Law.
A Copy of the Commission of Array granted to the Marquess of Hertford.
' Charles by the Grace of GOD, King of England, Scotland, France and Ireland, Defender of the Faith, &c. To Our Right-Trusty, and Right well-beloved Cousin and Counsellor, William Marquess of Hertford Greeting,
'Whereas there are now, at and near the City of London, great Forces levying, and Monies raising by way of Contribution, and otherwise, towards the Charge of raising and maintaining an Army, or Forces, by Order of our two Houses of Parliament; not only without our Consent, but contrary to our several express Commands, published by several Proclamations, Letters, and otherwise: And the same Forces are actually in so much forwardness, as that there are divers Horse-men daily exercised and trained in places about our said City of London; and great Numbers of Foot raising, and a General, and other principal Officers declared. We have found it necessary to levy and raise Forces, for the Defence of the Protestant Religion, our Person, the two Houses of Parliament; and for the Laws of the Land, the Liberty and Property of the Subject, and Privilege of Parliament. And for the special Trust and Confidence we have and do repose in your approved Wisdom, Fidelity Valour, and great Ability, des Name, Assign, Constitute, and Ordain, you the said William Marquess of Hertford, to be our Lieutenant-General, of all such Forces, as by virtue of this our Commission shall be levied and raised, or by virtue of this our Commission shall be brought unto you, within all or any our Counties of Devon, Cornwal, Somerset, Dorset, Southampton, Gloucester, Berks, Oxon, Hereford, Monmouth, Radnor, Brecknock, Glamorgan, Carmarthen, Pembrook, Cardigan; and in our Cities of Exeter, Bristol, Gloucester and Oxford, and the Counties of the same: And likewise in our Cities of Bath and Well's, New Salisbury and Hereford; and also in our Towns of Pool, Southampton, and Haverford West, and the Counties of the same Towns.
'And therefore we do give you full Power and Authority, in case of any Invasion, Insurrection and Rebellion, or any of them; and for the suppression or prevention of acting, or further executing the same, to raise and levy Forces as well of our Trained-Bands as others, within all, or any of the said Counties and Places, as well within Liberties as without, meet and apt for the Wars. And likewise to command and enjoin the Commissioners of our Commissions of Array and Sheriffs of out said several Counties; and all our Lieutenant which are, or shall be of or for our said several Counties, and every or any of them respectively, from time to time, according to such Direction as you shall receive from Us, or as you in your good Discretion, for the Purposes aforesaid, shall think fit to send, or cause to be sent unto you such Numbers of our said Subjects, apt and meet for the Wars, armed and arrayed as aforesaid, to such place or places, and at such Times as shall be directed by Us or as you by your Wisdom and good Discretion for our said Services shall require; or from our said Commissioners, Sheriffs, or Lieutenants, to be sent, brought, or conducted unto you.
'And we do further by these Presents, give you full Power and Authority, to Try, Array, and put in readiness the Persons so by you to be raised, levyed, or assembled, sent, conducted, or brought unto you: And them also, and every of them after their Abilities, Degrees, and Faculties, well and so sufficiently cause to be armed and weaponed, and to take the Musters of them from time to time in places most meet for that purpose, after your good Discretion. And also the same our good Subjects so Arrayed, Tried and Armed, as well Men of Arms, as other Horse-men, Archers, and Footmen, of all kinds of Degrees meet and apt for the Wars, to conduct and lead, as well against all and singular Enemies, Rebels and Traitors, and every of their Adherents, attempting any thing against Us, our Crown and Dignity, in any of the said Counties or places, from time to time as occasion shall require; and the said Enemies, Traitors and Rebels, to invade and repress; and in case of Opposition or Resistance, to Slay, Kill, and put to Execution of Death, by all Ways or Means, according to your good Discretion; and to do, fulfill, and execute all other things which shall be requisite for the Levying, Conducting, and Government of the said Forces, for the Conservation of our said Realms and Subjects in Peace. And also we give you full Power and Authority to make, constitute and ordain Laws and Proclamations, from time to time, as the Case shall require, for the good Government and Order of all the Forces that shall be under your Command; and the same and every of them to cause to be duly proclaimed, performed, and executed against the said Enemies, Traitors and Rebels, and every of them, their, and every of their Adherents: And of such Offenders apprehended, or being brought into Subjection, to save whom you shall think fit to be saved. And our further Will and Pleasure is, and we do by these Presents give unto you full Power and Authority, in case of any Invasion of Enemies, Insurrections or Rebellions shall happen to be moved in any Place of this our Realm, within or without the Limits of this our Commission; that then (as often as Need shall require, by your good Discretion, or as you shall be directed by Us by any special Commandment) you with such Power to be levied within the Limits of this our Commission, as you shall think requisite, or as shall be directed from us, as is aforesaid, shall, with all diligence, repair to the place or places where any such Invasion, Rebellion, or Insurrection, shall be made to subdue, repress and reform the same, as well by Battle, or other kind of Force, as otherwise, according to the Laws of this our Realm, and according to your good Discretion. And our further Will and Pleasure is, and we do by these Presents give unto you full Power and Authority, in case any Invasion of Enemies, Insurrections or Rebellions, shall happen to be moved in any of the said Counties, or Places, that then, and as often as you shall perceive any such Offences or Occasions to grow or arise, you, with all the Power you can make, shall, with all diligence, repair to the Place where any such Invasions, Insurrection or Rebellion shall happen to be made; and to subdue, repress, and reform the same, and every of them. And we do give full Power and Authority to you, for the Execution of this Commission, to appoint, and assign all Commanders and Officers, necessary and requisite for Government, and Command of our Army. And further also, that in case you shall in your Discretion think fit to divide, or dispose the said Forces by Land, or by Sea, into several Parts, That then you may, as often as occasion shall be, divide and dispose the same, for the purposes aforesaid, into such parts and places, at your pleasure; and appoint such Commanders over such parts of the said Forces, as in your Discretion you shall think meet. And we do further give and grant unto you, full Power and Authority for Us, and in our Name, (as occasion shall require according to your Discretion) by publick Proclamation, to make tender of our Royal Grace and Pardon, to all such Traitors and Rebels (if any shall be) as shall submit to Us and desire to be received to our Mercy. And for the better Execution of this our Service, We do further give and grant to you full Power and Authority, (as occasion shall require) whensoever you shall (according to the intent of these our Letter-Patents) have an Army or Forces under your Command in our absence, to command all our Forts and Castles now fortified, or hereafter to be fortified in or near the parts or places, where the said Army shall be; and to remove, displace, or continue the Captains, Lieutenants, Commanders and Soldiers, as you shall think meet for the Good and Safety of this our Kingdom.
'Wherefore we Will and Command you, our said Lieutenant-General, with all diligence, duly to execute the Premisses with Effect: And whatsoever you shall do, by virtue of this our Commission, and according to the Tenour and Effect of the same, touching the execution of the Premisses, or any part thereof, you shall be for the same by these Presents discharged in that behalf against Us, our Heirs and Successors.
'And further, we Will and Command all and singular, our Lieutenants, Deputy-Lieutenants, Officers of our Ordinance, Justices of Peace, Mayors, Sheriff, Bailiffs. Constables, Headboroughs, and all other our Officers, Ministers and Subjects, meet and apt for the Wars, within the said Counties and Places to whom it shall appertain, That they, and every of them, from time to time, shall be attendant, aiding assistant, and helping to you, and at the Commandment of you, as aforesaid in the execution hereof, as they and every of them tender our Pleasure, and will answer for the contrary at their utmost Perils. Nevertheless, our Will and Pleasure is, That you the said William Marquess of Hertford, in the execution of this our Commission, shall from time to time, proceed according to such private Instructions, as are or shall be delivered unto to you, under our Sign Manuel. In witness whereof, we have made these our Letters to be made Patents, and to have continuance during our Pleasure.
The King's Majesty's Instructions unto the Earl of Northampton, the Lord Dunsmore, the High Sheriff of the County of Warwick, and the rest of the Commissioners, for putting the Commission of Array in Execution in the said County of Warwick.
'Having by our Proclamations at large set forth the Occasions and Necessity of disposing and ordering the Militia of this Kingdom, and concerning the Legality of our Proceedings therein; We have, in pursuance of that Legal Power, and for the necessary Defence of Us, our Kingdoms, and your Country authorised you our Commissioners, or any three or more of you, by our Commission of Array, to array, and train all the Inhabitants in your County (as well within Liberty as without) which are of Body able, and Estate competent to bear Arms every one of them according to their Estates and Faculties, and to assess and distrain such as are able in Goods and Lands (and bear no Arms) to find Arms for other Men in a proportion suitable to their Estates (so that such Persons as are so arrayed for the Defence of the Kingdom take no Wages, nor Costs, so long as they stay at home) and to dispose of the Persons so arrayed into Regiments, Companies, or other Divisions as shall be convenient. We have also assigned you, or any three or more of you, whereof you Spencer Earl of Northampton, or you Francis Lord Dunsmore to be one, to command or enjoyn our Subjects so arrayed, as well to the Sea-Coasts as other places, for Expulsion, Suppression and Destruction of our Enemies from time to time when need shall require.
'We have also assigned you, or any three or more of you, from time to time to take view and muster of our said Men, and to proclaim, order and examine, that all our Men so array'd appear in such Musters with their own Arms (not other Mens) under pain of losing them, except only such as are to be arrayed at the Cost of other Men, as aforesaid.
'And you are hereby authorized to arrest and attach all such Persons as Rebel or make Opposition, and commit them to our Prisons, there to remain 'till they be thence delivered according to Law, requiring you strictly upon your Allegiance, that forthwith upon the Receipt hereof, you cause your selves to be well and securely prepared and armed, and call before you at such days and places as shall be expedient, all such Persons, by whom such Array and Defence is to be prepared, so that they may be competently provided, arrayed, and armed; and that they continue in such Array and also to provide and place Beacons in usual and convenient places, whereby our good People may receive timely Notice of all Invasions and Commotions, so that for defect of such Defence, Array, or Conduct by your Negligence, Damage accrue not to our People in any fort.
'And we have likewise given strict Charge and Command to all Earls, Barons, Mayors, Bailiffs, Constables, and all other Officers of the Peace, and all our Liege People, that in all and singular the Premises they aid and assist you.
'And to our Sheriff of our County, to whom you are to direct your Warrants, that he issue Warrants to the Constables to assemble our People, at such days and places, as you, or any three of you, shall ordain and appoint, and to keep and detain in Prison such persons as shall be committed for their Rebellion or Contempt herein (as more at large by the Commission appeareth.) And being unwilling in our princely Care for our People, to bring any increase of Charge upon them, we hope for the present it will be sufficient, that you only summon and train the ancient and free-hold Bands of the County (and your number be supplied with sufficient and able Persons) taking special care that they be well arrayed, and under Conduct of such Persons as are Persons of Quality, having considerable Estates and Interests in the County, and not Strangers, unless you find it shall be well-pleasing to our People, and for the necessary Defence of the Country to make any Augmentation of their Arms.
'And you are to take Notice, That Recusants being disabled in Law to bear Arms, are to be assessed to contribute to find Arms for other Men; and if their Tenants that are Protestants bear Arms, you are to receive them. For the better knowledge of your particular Duties herein, you are all to take Copies of these Instructions, and to take Transcripts of our said Commission, the Original to remain with one of those of the Quorum; and of your Proceedings herein we expect a speedy and plenary Account.
The Lord Willoughby of Parham his Letter to a Member of the House of Lords, upon his being nominated by the Two Houses, Lord Lieutenant for the County of Lincoln.
I Received a Letter from your Lordship, in which the House is pleased to do me a very great Honour, far above any Desert of mine, and little expected by me: For, my Lord, I well know my Obedience ties me to fulfil their Commands, and in that I have done, I have done but my Duty, and that which every honest Man ought to do, and oweth of right to the Parliment; and whosoever hath that Principle in him, it will dictate to him as much, and keep him from other by-ways. And for my own part my Heart ever was, and shall ever be both forward and ready to obey their Lordship's Commands in all things both with Integrity and Industry. And God's Curse light upon him and his that carries any other Heart about him. My Lord, it is too mean a way for me to express my acknowledgment in Paper for this high Favour which I have received by your Lordship's Letter. I hope to make it appear by my Actions that their Lordships see, I am not an ungrateful Servant. It is a great Encouragement to these parts, their Lordships Resolutions, in giving their Commands to have the rest of the Militia put in present Execution; and truly, my Lord, it was out of that regard that I did intimate it to my Lord of Essex, as holding it a thing much conducing to the publick Good, and the only Remedy to cure these Distractions which the Kingdom is in, not out of any regard to my self; for I know if I suffer in executing their Lordships Commands, it must be against their Wills, and when that day comes I will not give a Straw for what I have, were I but a Looker-on. My Lord, us I was this day at Lincoln, where I appointed to begin to muster, there came a Messenger from his Majesty with this Letter, which I held it my Duty to acquaint the House with, and likewise my Answer, and am for Lincoln, where, as in all other places, I shall be ready to serve your Lordship as your most humble Servant,
My Lord, e'er my Letter was sealed up, I could not but give your Lordship an account in how good a Posture I found the Trained-Bands of Lincoln, which was far beyond my Expectation, considering the Unhappiness in the Sickness, being dispersed in the Town which hindred the appearance of some. But truly, my Lord, that was fully, supplied by a Company of Volunteers, equal in number and goodness of Arms to the Trained-Bands
His Majesty's Letter to the Lord Willoughby of Parham.
' Right Trusty and Well-beloved, we greet you well. Whereas we understand, That you have begun to assemble, train and muster the Trained-Bands of our County of Lincoln, under pretence of an Ordinance of Parliament, whereto We have not given Our Consent; which is not only contrary to Law, but to our Command and Pleasure, signified by our Proclamation sent to the high Sheriff of that our County: Wherefore that you may not hereafter plead Ignorance of such our Prohibition, We do by these our Letters charge and command you upon you Allegiance to desist and forbear to raise, muster, train, exercise, or assemble together any part of the Trained-Bands of our County, either by your self, or by any others employed under you, or by Warrant from you. And because you may for what you have already done concerning the Militia of that our County, plead that you had not so particular a Command, we shall pass by what you have already done therein, so as presently upon your Receipt hereof you shall desist, and give over medling any further with any thing belonging to the Militia of that Our County; but if you shall not presently desist and forbear medling therewith, We are resolved to call you to a strict Account for your Disobedience therein, after so many particular and legal Commands given you upon your Allegiance to the contrary, and shall esteem and proceed against you as a Disturber of the Peace of Our Kingdom.
The Lord Willoughby of Parham his Letter in Answer to his Majesty.
As there can be nothing of greater Heaviness to me than to receive a Command from your Majesty whereunto my Endeavours cannot give so ready an Obedience as my Affections; so I must confess the Difficulty at this time not a little how to express that Duty which I owe to your Majesty's late Commands, and not falsify that Trust reposed in me by your High Court of Parliament, through whose particular Directions I am now come into this County to settle the Militia according to the Ordinance of Parliament, which by the Votes of my Lord Littleton and others in the House of Peers better vers'd in the Laws than my self, passed as a legal Thing, and hath since been confirmed (and if I m stake not) by his Example and your Majesty's Chief Justice Sir John Banks, both in accepting their Ordinance, and nominating their Deputy-Lieutenants: How much farther they proceed, I know not.
But, Sir, If the Opinion of those great Lawyers drew me into an Understanding unsuitable to your Majesty's liking, I hope the want of Years will excuse my want of Judgment. And since the Command of Parliament, I am now so far engaged in their Service as the sending out Warrants to summon the Country to meet me this Day at Lincoln, and afterwards in other Places. I do most humbly beseech your Majesty not to impose that Command on me, which must needs render me false to those that rely on me, and so make me more unhappier than any other Misery can befall me.
These Things, Sir, I once humbly beseech your Majesty may be taken into your gracious Consideration, and that you would never be pleased to harbour any Misconceit of me or of this Action, since nothing hath yet passed by my Commands here, or ever shall, but what shall tend to the Honour and Safety of your Majesty's Person, to the preservation of the Peace of your Kingdom, and to the Content (I hope) of all your Majesty's Subjects in these Parts, amongst which I remain,
Your Majesty's most humble and most dutiful Subject and Servant,
The Message of the Lords to the House of Commons, upon the Lord Willoughby of Parham his Letter and Service in the Execution of the Ordinance concerning the Militia.
The Lords have thought fit to let you know how much they value and approve the Endeavours of this Lord in a Service so much importing the Safety of this Kingdom, and they doubt not of your Readiness to concur with them, upon all Occasions to manifest the Sense they have, and shall retain of his Deservings, which appears the greater, by how much the Difficulties (by those Circumstances you have heard read) have been greater; and as my Lords resolve to make his Interest their own in this Service, for the publick Good and Safety of this Kingdom, so they desire you to join with them in so good and necessary a Work.
Resolved by the House of Commons to join with the Lords in this Vote, and to make the like Resolution for the Deputy-Lieutenants for the County of Lincoln, and desire the Lords Concurrence therein. Ordered by the Lords in Parliament, that they agree with the House of Commons for the Resolutions concerning the Deputy-Lieutenants of the County of Lincoln.
The Lord of Warwick's Letter to his Brother the Earl of Holland.
In Obedience to the Order of both Houses of Parliament, I this Day repaired to Burntwood, (where about one fourth part of the Trained-Bands of Essex were appointed to meet) for putting of the Ordinance for the Militia in execution. I saw five Companies drawn out, being of the ordinary Trained-Bands, (and all that were designed for this Place, whose Numbers 1 found full, and their Arms compleat; for though about threescore Arms had been taken out of each Company, for the late Service about Scotland, yet a full supply was made by Voluntiers; and one of the said five Companies (being under the Conduct of Sir William Masham 's Son) was double to the usual List. A sixth Company was drawn out, which consisted of near five hundred able Men, who came as Voluntiers, under the Command of Sir Thomas Barington 's Younger on. J caused the Declaration of both Houses made for their Indempnity, to be read at the Head of each Company: And required the Captains, Officers, and Souldiers to be obedient to such Directions as should be conveyed to them from me, or my Deputy-Lieutenants, according to the said Ordinance, for the Service of his Majesty and the Parliament, for the Defence of the Kingdom. To which they did unanimously manifest a Resolution and Respect, and a chearful Readiness therein to spend their Lives and Fortunes. Hereof I thought fit to give your Lordship this brief Account, praying you to communicate the same to their Lordships; I having desired my Deputy-Lieutenants to do the same to the House of Commons. I have this Day received a Petition from the Captains and Lieutenants of the several Companies here assembled, in the Name of all the Persons belonging to the said Trained Bands, and with their full Consents expressed upon the reading of it, by their general Acclamations and Applause in their several Companies.
The Approbation of both Houses concerning the Militia in Essex.
The Lords and Commons in Parliament assembled, being advertised by the Lord-Lieutenant, and Deputy-Lieutenants of the County of Essex, of the ready, full and forward Meeting of the Trained-Bands of that County, and of the chearful Access of a very considerable number of Voluntiers, at their first appearing, have thought fit to express unto them the good Sense they hold of their Proceedings, so much conducing to the general Safety of this Kingdom; and having likewise received from them a Declaration full of Affections and good Inclinations, to maintain our Religion, Laws, Liberties and Priviledges of Parliament, which they observe to be invaded by pernicious Counsels, as indeed they have been of late in a more dangerous and high manner than any Age can parallel: And having very prudently observed, in a right Understanding, that the Kingdom, and the King's Authority and Person can be no ways maintained, but by the upholding the Power and Priviledges of Parliament, as by the late Protection they acknowledge themselves bound unto, against all contrary Counsels, Power and Force of Arms whatsoever. This just and faithful Resolution of theirs to the publick Good, the Lords and Commons do not only approve, but commend, assuring them, That as their Endeavours have been for the Peace and Happiness of the King and Kingdom, so they will persist in discharge of the great and publick Trust which lies upon them, to go through all Difficulties which may oppose the publick Peace and Welfare of this Kingdom; and will, upon all Occasions, be ready to express particularly to those Persons that respect which is due to Persons from whom they have received such Assurance of their Affections and Fidelities.
A Declaration of the Lords and Commons in Parliament, Directed to the High-Sheriff of the County of Essex, and all other Sheriffs in general, within the Kingdom of England, and Dominion of Wales, Concerning his Majesty's Proclamation about the Militia.
Whereas Robert Smith, Esq; now High-Sheriff of the County of Essex, hath lately received a Writ, bearing Date the 27th of May, in the eighteenth Year of his now Majesty's Reign; thereby commanding him to publish a Proclamation, whereby all his Majesty's Subjects belonging to the Trained-Bands, or Militia of this Kingdom, are forbidden to Rise, March, Muster or Exercise, by virtue of any Order or Ordinance of one or both Houses of Parliament, without Consent or Warrant from his Majesty, upon pain of Punishment according to the Laws. And whereas the said High-Sheriff hath now addressed himself to both Houses of Parliament, for Advice and Directions therein; conceiving the said Proclamation to be contrariant, and repugnant to the Ordinance and Judgment of both Houses of Parliament concerning the Militia. It is therefore declared, by the Lords and Commons in Parliament, (they intending nothing by the said Ordinance, but the Protection and Security of his Majesty's Person, the Defence of the Kingdom against Foreign Invasion, and the Preservation of the publick Peace, against Intestine Rebellions and Insurrections here at Home, the Maintenance of the Priviledges and Authority of Parliament, according to the Protestation) that the said Writ is Illegal; For that by the Constitution and Policy of this Kingdom, the King by his Proclamation cannot declare the Law, contrary to the Constitution of any of the Inferior Courts of Justice, much less against the High Court of Parliament: And likewise, for that this Writ forbids that to be done, which they are obliged unto by their Duty to God, their Allegiance to his Majesty, and the Trust reposed in them by the Common-Wealth, (the Law having intrusted them to provide for the Good and Safety thereof); and that the said High-Sheriff hath done nothing in forbearing to publish the said Proclamation, but according to his Duty, and in Obedience to the Order of both Houses: And he is hereby required, not to publish the said Proclamation, or any other Proclamations or Declarations of the like Nature, that concern the Parliament, without first acquainting the said Houses. And it is further declared, That the said High-Sheriff, and other Sheriffs of other Counties, within this Kingdom of England, and Dominion of Wales, for their Obedience to the Orders and Ordinances of Parliament; or that have, or hereafter shall do any thing in the Execution thereof, shall be protected by the Power and Authority of both the said Houses.
Kent, Sussex, Surry, and Middlesex, and the Eastern-Counties, Suffolk, Norfolk, and Cambridgeshire, generally adhered, or at least submitted unto the Ordinance for the Militia; for though many of the Chief Gentry of those Counties were for paying Obedience to his Majesty's Commission of Array, yet the Free-holders and Yeomen being generally of the other side, as oft as they attempted to shew themselves, they were crush'd, and their Eudeavours defeated.
The Lord Strange, Son to the Earl of Derby, was made by the King Lord Lieutenant of Lancashire and Cheshire, and vigorously endeavoured to put the Commission of Array in Execution, but met with great Opposition from Sir Thomas Stanly, Mr. Holland, Mr. Holcraft, Mr. Egerton, and Mr. Booth; as also by Mr. Ashton and Mr. Moor, both Members of the House of Commons. On the 15th of July, 1642, the said Lord Strange made an Attempt to gain Manchester, but was repulsed; yet one Man by Name Richard Parcival, was slain by my Lord's Forces (which some say * was the first Blood drawn in those unhappy Wars.) Upon which afterwards the House of Commons caused the said Lord Strange to be Impeached, as followeth.
The Impeachment of James Lord Strange, and Son and Heir apparent of William Earl of Derby, by the Commons assembled in Parliament, in the Name of themselves and all the Commons of England, of High-Treason.
That the said James, Lord Strange, to the Intent and Purpose to subvert the Fundamental Laws and Goverment, of this Kingdom of England, and the Rights and Liberties, and very Being of Parliaments: And to set Sedition between the King and his People, did, upon the fifteenth Day of July, in this present Year of our Lord God, One thousand six hundred forty two, at Manchester, in the County of Lancaster, and at several other Times and Places, actually, maliciously, rebelliously and traiterously, summon and call together great Numbers of his Majesty's Subjects; and incite, perswade, and encourage them to take up Arms, and levy War against the King, Parliament, and Kingdom: That the said James, Lord Strange, in further Prosecution of his foresaid wicked, traiterous, and malicious Purposes, did, upon the said fifteenth Day of July, at Manchester aforesaid, and at several other Times and Places, actually maliciously, rebelliously and traiterously, raise great Forces of Men and Horse, and levied War against the King, Parliament and Kingdom. And in further prosecution of the aforesaid wicked, traiterous and malicious Purposes, the said James, Lord Strange, and divers other Persons whom he had drawn into his Party and Faction, did also, upon the said fifteenth day of July, at Manchester aforesaid, maliciously and traiterously, with Force and Arms, and in an hostile and warlike manner, kill, murder and destroy Richard Parcivall of Kirkman-Shalme in the said County of Lancaster, Linen-Webster; and did then, and there, and at divers other Times and Places, in like hostile manner as aforesaid, shoot, stab, hurt and wound divers others of his Majesty's good Subjects, contrary to the Laws and Peace of this Kingdom of England, and contrary to his Majesty's Royal Crown and Dignity: And the said James, Lord Strange, hath set Sedition between the King and his People, and now is in open and actual Rebellion against the King, Parliament and Kingdom: For which Matters and Things, the Knights, Citizens and Burgesses of the House of Commons in Parliament assembled, do, in the Name of themselves, and of all the Commons of England, impeach the said James Lord Strange, of High-Treason. And the said Commons, by Protestation, saving to themselves the Liberty of exhibiting as my time hereafter any other Accusation or Impeachment against the said Lord Strange, and also to replying of the Answers, that the said James Lord Strange shall make to the Premisses, or any of them, or of any other Impeachment of Accusation that shall be exhibited by them, as the Cause, according to the Course and Proceedings of Parliament shall require, do pray, that the said James Lord Strange may be put to answer all and every the Premisses, that such Proceedings, Examinations, Tryals, and Judgments, may be upon them, and every one of them had and used, as shall be agreeable to Law and Justice.
Veneris 16 September, 1642.
Whereas the Lord Strange having continued a long Time, and still remaining in actual Rebellion against his Majesty and the Parliament; is for the same impeached of High-Treason by the House of Commons, in the Name of themselves, and all the Commons of England: If it therefore Ordered, by the Lords and Commons in Parliament Assembled. That Publication thereof he made in all Churches and Chappels, by the Curates and Church-wardens thereof; and in all Markets and Towns, by the Constables and Officers of the Towns within the Counties of Lancaster and Chester, to the end that all his Majesty's loving Subjects may have Notice thereof, left they being deceived by the Specious Pretences made by the said Lord Strange, should assist him with Men, Money, Munition, or any other Provision, and so make themselves guilty of the like Treason and Rebellion: And all Sheriffs, and other his Majesty's Subjects, are hereby required to do their best Endeavour for the Apprehension of the said Lord, and the bringing him up to the Parliament, there to receive condign Punishment according to his Demerits.>
His Majesty's Instructions to his Commissioners of Array, for the several Counties of England, and the Principality of Wales; and to be observ'd by all Sheriffs, Mayors, Justices of the Peace, Bailiffs, Headboroughs, Constables, and all other his Majesty's loving Subjects whatsoever.
'Whereas a desperate and dangerous Rebellion is raised, and an Army marching against us, and such other of our good Subjects, whose Loyalty and Affection is eminent unto us in several Counties of the Kingdom, under pretence of some Authority from both our Houses of Parliament, and the same is done as by our Consent, and for the Safety of our Person, whereby many of our loving Subjects are misled and engaged in undutiful and disloyal Actions against us their Sovereign, and to oppose Persons immediately authorized by us, and become Disturbers of the Peace: We do, for the Information of all our good Subjects, that they may be no longer corrupted or seduced by these false and damnable Infusions, declare, That we do disavow our Consent to any of the pretended Ordinances, and do protest against the same, and all the Proceedings thereupon, as seditious and treasonable to our Person, Crown, and Dignity: And do declare, That the Army now under the Command of the Earl of Essex, and raised in any part of the Kingdom by his Direction, or by the Direction of any pretended Ordinance, is raised against us, and to take away our Life from us; and that he, and all who adhere to him, are Traytors, by the known established Laws of this Kingdom; and therefore our express Command to you, and to every of you is,
- 1. 'That you forthwith raise all possible Power for the Apprehension of the said Earl of Essex and his Confederates; and that with such Forces of Horse and Foot, you shall Fight with, Kill and Slay, all such as shall by Force oppose you in the Execution of our Commands; and such who shall presume to put the Ordinance of the Militia in Execution against our express Pleasure and Consent. And you shall pursue the said Rebels and Traytors in the said Counties, or in any other Counties or Parts of the Kingdom, into which they shall retire themselves; all which Forces so to be raised, shall have, the same Pay as the rest of our Armies have.
- 2. 'You shall defend and protect all our Subjects from Violence and Oppression, by the illegal pretended Ordinance concerning the Militia, the pretended Ordinance for the Earl of Essex to be General, or any other Ordinance to which we have not, or shall not give our Consent, and shall not suffer any of our loving Subjects to be troubled or molested for refusing to submit to the said pretended Ordinances, but shall assist and defend them from any Summons, Messengers, Serjeant, or Warrant, which shall disturb them for the same. And the said Messengers, or Serjeants, you shall apprehend and commit to Prison, as seditious Disturbers of the Peace of the Kingdom.
- 3. 'You shall, to your utmost Power, assist the Execution of our Commission of Array, which ought to be obeyed by the known Laws of the Land; and if any factious or seditious Persons, shall raise any Power to oppose our said legal Commission, or the Execution thereof, you shall, in your several Counties, levy Men, and lead them out of your said Counties to the Place where such Force is raised, and suppress the same: More-especially you shall be aiding and assisting to the Lord Marquess Hertford, who is Authorized by our Commission, General of our Forces in the Western Parts; and to the Earl of Cumberland, our Lieutenant-General for the County of York; and to the Lord Strange and Collonel Goring. And to that purpose you shall levy such other Forces of Horse and Foot, as the said Marquess shall by his Commission, give you Power to do, under such Collonels, Commanders, and other Officers, as shall be by him appointed or directed within the several Counties mentioned in his Commission, as the Earl of Cumberland, and as the Lord Strange shall likewise direct, in the Counties within their several Commissions.
- 4. 'Our express Pleasure and Commmand is, That you do disarm all Popish Recusants, and all such other dangerous and ill-affected Persons, and Brownists, Anabaptists, and other Sectaries, as well Clergy-men as others, as have testify'd, or shall testify their ill Disposition to the Peace and Government of the Kingdom. And you shall endeavour, by causing our several Declarations, Messages, and Answers, to be publickly read in Churches and other Places, to clear our Proceedings from all false Imputations and Aspersions, and shall from Time to Time, certify us of all Things necessary for the Publick Service. And that our Directions to you, and your Advertisements to us, may have a clear and ready Passage, We do hereby command all Post-Masters, that they do not suffer any Letters, or other Dispatches, to or from us, to be intercepted or stayed, as they will answer the contrary at their utmost Perils. And if any bold Persons, by what Authority soever, shall presume to make such Stay of those Dispatches, you shall apprehend such Persons, and shall give all Assistance and Protection to those Persons employ'd in such Dispatches.
- 5. 'If you shall find any disaffected Persons raising Parties against us. spreading Scandals or Imputations on our Proceedings, like to disturb the Peace of the Kingdom; you shall cause all such Persons (upon good Proofs of their Misdemeanours) to be apprehended and committed to Prison, 'till they shall answer their Offences, in such manner as is agreeable to Law and Justice.
'You shall take from the said Rebels and Traytors, and their Adherents, all Arms, Ordnance, and Ammunition; and such as they have taken from any of our good Subjects, you shall restore again to the true Owners.
'And whereas divers seditious Persons, under pretence of Commissions from the Earl of Essex, presume to levy Horse and Foot, and to collect Money for the same; you shall seize upon all Horses, Arms, Ammunition, Money, Plate, or other Provisions whatsoever, raised or provided under any such Pretences, and without our express Authority for the fomenting or maintaining any such unnatural and unlawful War against us, the Religion and Law of the Kingdom. And you shall assure all such of our well-affected Subjects, who shall contribute any Aid or Assistance to us, in this our great Necessity, or observe these our Instructions, that we will protect them with our utmost Power, and venture our Life and Crown in their just Defence; which Resolution of ours you shall publish and declare upon all Occasions, for the better Encouragement of all our good Subjects in that behalf.
Collonel Goring, eldest Son to the Lord Goring, who having been a means the Year before to discover the controverted Design of bringing up the Army out of the North against the Parliament, being thereby grown into some Trust with the Parliament, whereof he was a Member, having been sent down Governour of Portsmouth, and 3000 l. allowed him for the Payment of his Soldiers, and Charges of Fortification; did in the beginning of August, 1642, declare for the King, the better to countenance the Progress of the Commission of Array in Hampshire and Sussex, expecting to be relieved by the Marquess of Hartford, and the Commissioners of Array in Somerset Shire and Counties adjacent: Whereupon several Members of the House of Commons were sent down to join with the Commissioners of the Militia, to raise Forces for the reducing of that Garrison, and to oppose Relief by the Commissioners of Array. The Collonel was so civil, as that he produced unto them a Copy of two Commissions which he had received from the King; the one bearing Date in the Beginning of June 1642, and the other in July following, commanding him to imploy that Fort according to his Majesty's sole Directions, and to raise a Regiment of Foot, and 300 Horse, giving him Power to fight with, kill and slay all such as should oppose him.
The Committee of Parliament, viz. Sir William Levis, Mr. Whitehead, Mr. Wallop, Sir Thomas Jervis, Mr. Richard Norton, and divers others, stopp'd all manner of Intelligence by Land from going in, or coming out of Portsmouth, as the Earl of Warwick did by Sea; and intercepted Letters from Collonel Goring, directed to the Marquess of Hartford, and Sir John Stowel, for present Help by Land and Sea, or else he was lost: Also they intercepted Intelligence from Collonel Goring to Collonel Bret, newly made Governour of the Isle of Wight, for Help by Sea, to send him 500 Men with all speed. The Earl of Warwick also intercepted Letters going by Sea from Collonel Goring, one of whose Letters did express, That the Marquess of Hartford would by Thursday, the 18th of August, attempt to relieve Collonel Goring with Horse and Foot: Hereupon the Commissioners for the Militia raised the Train'd-Bands of Hampshire, Surry, and Sussex, and had Sir John Merrick 's Regiment sent unto them for their Assistance; and Brown Bushel, then in the Parliament's Service, did in the Nighttime, in a desperate manner board the Ship called Henrietta Maria, then riding under that Fort at Portsmouth, and brought her away, with Eight Brass Pieces of Ordnance.
The Governour being extremely straightned, and seeing no Hopes of Relief, beat a Drum for a Parly, and sent out the Lord Wentworth and Mr. Lukenar, a Lawyer, as Hostages; whereupon Sir William Lewis, and Sir William Waller went into the Town. The Governour entertained them nobly; and after long Discourse came to Terms of Surrender, but not to yield it 'till he had sent to the King to appoint him a peremptory Day for his Relief; and if his Majesty did, at the Time set, fail, he would then give an Answer: But the Parliament's Commissioners reply'd, That unless he would agree to let the Parliament's Forces come in after that appointed Time, they could not conclude with him; so Hostages on both Sides were at Liberty, but no Cessation of Arms was admitted; and that very Night the Collonel sent out a strong Party of Horse, thinking to have surprized the Sentinels and first Guards; but the Commander in chief of Goring 's Party was slain, three hurt, and two taken Prisoners, and the rest pursued in their Retreat to the Town.
Afterwards the Collonel beat again for a Parly, understanding that South Sea Castle was taken by the Parliament-Forces, besides a Mutiny that was then in the Town: Whereupon Hostages being given on each Side, a Treaty was concluded, and 200 marched into the Town to take Possession of part thereof, and upon Wednesday 200 more marched, and on Thursday by Ten of the Clock, the whole Regiment with three Troops of Horse were also to march into the Town, Liberty being given for all in the Garrison to march out with Swords and Pistols, but no other Arms, and to go into any part of the Kingdom, or beyond Sea, and Goring himself took Shipping for Holland.
Intelligence being given to the House of Commons, That the Earl of Berkshire, and divers Gentlemen of principal Quality in Oxfordshire, intended shortly to put in Execution the King's Commission of Array at Wattleton, They commanded Mr. Whitlock, a Member of the House, to use his utmost Endeavours to prevent the Execution of that Commission in Oxfordshire, and to apprehend such of the Commissioners as should meet for that purpose: And the better to enable him hereunto, they ordered some of the Regiment of Horse of Collonel Goodwin, and of the Regiment of Foot of Collonel Hambden to attend his Command.
The Commissioners of Array having appointed their Meeting at Wattleton at a Day, and the County summoned to come in unto them, Mr Whitlock sent for the Forces appointed to meet him, and in the Afternoon came to him a Troop of Horse and a Company of Foot, and Mr. Hambden himself with them; and when they were met, they had Information that the Commissioners, having Notice of the Parliament's Forces being in the Field, thought not fit to continue at Wattleton, but did break off their Business, and not taking leave, or dismissing the Country, the Commissioners, with their Company hasted to Sir Robert Dormer 's Horse, and thither they were pursued; and when the Parliament's Company beleaguered the House, they fired some Musquets and Pistols at them, but finding themselves too weak for the Parliament Party, and that they went about to storm the House, they presently yielded upon Quarter.
Not long after Sir John Biron with some Troops for the King came to Oxford, to remove whom, the Lord Says, Lieutenant of that County, sent to Mr. Whitlock, and other Deputy Lieutenants to meet him with what Forces they could make; Whitlock had a gallant Company of Horse of his Neighbours, the Lord Say a Regiment of Dragoons, and with him the Lord St. John, and several Companies of his Regiment of Foot; so that their Forces, when conjoin'd, made a Body of 3000 and upwards, with whom they entred Oxford without Resistance, (for Sir John Brion, heating of their Advance, had quitted it) but were more welcome to the Townsmen than to the Scholars; yet not only the Mayor and Aldermen, but the Vice-Chancellor, Heads of the Houses, and Proctors, paid my Lord Say the Complement of a Visit, protesting their Respects to the Parliament, and their Desires of Peace, and engaged themselves not to act any thing against the Parliament.
Here there was a Council held to debate the Importance of retaining this City, as well for the Strength of its Situation, the plenty of the Country round about it, its Nearness to London, and the Aversion of the University to the Parliament's Cause; as for that the King by his coming to Shrewsbury, and looking this way might probably make Oxford his Head-Quarters, by reason of all those Advantages, and fortifie it: To prevent which, it was propounded to continue a good Garrison in it, and Whitlock to be Governour; to which both the Townsmen and several parts of the Country seemed very willing, but the Lord Say declined it, pretending Favour to the University and Country, and the Improbability of the King's settling here, and therefore only took an Engagement and Promise from the respective Heads of the Houses, That their Plate should be forth-coming, and should not be made use of by the King against the Parliament. And so left the Place as he found it. Sir John Biron being thus dislodged from Oxford, marched with 500 Horse to Worcester, and took in that Town for the King.
In the beginning of the Month of August 1641. the Marquess of Hartford, the Lord Seymour, Lord Pawlet, Sir John Stowel, Captain John Digby, Sir Ralph Hopton, Sir Francis Doddington, Mr. Edward Kirton, and others, Commissioners of Array, had their Rendezvous at Wells in Sommersetshire, with several Troops of Horse and Foot; to disturb whose Meeting, Mr. Popham, Sir Edward Hungerford, Sir John Horner, and others, Commissioners for the Militia, assembled together many Thousands of Horse and Foot of the Trained-Bands, and others, and had Four Pieces of Ordnance with them, which occasioned the Commissioners of Array that Night to depart from the City of Wells; but afterwards the Commissioners of Array assembling at Sherbon in Dorsetshire in greater Numbers; the Parliament's Soldiers of the Militia not enduring to he long in the Field, it being Harvest-time, left the Commissioners, and went home to their own Houses to mind their Harvest, the Horse on each side had a Rencounter near Sherborn Castle, where some were slain; but afterwards more Forces coming from the Parliament to assist the Commissioners for the Militia, the Commissioners of Array retreated toward Minehead in Somersetshire, and went by Sea from thence into Wales and Gloucestershire, Mr. Lutterel refusing to permit the Marquess to make the Castle at Minehead a Garrison. Likewise the Commissioners of Array put their Commissions in Execution at this Time in several other Places. Sir Nicholas Slaney, and Sir Richard Greenvile were active in Cornwal: and the Earl of Northampton in Northamptonshire, who seized upon six small Pieces of Iron-Ordnance left at Banbury. The Earl of Cumberland was likewise very active in the County of York, but resisted by the Lord Fairfax and others of the Parliamentary Gentlemen.
August 24th. Near Dunsmore-Heath in Warwickshire, the Lord Brook, with some Forces, met the Earl of Northampton 's Forces of Arraymen; where, at the first firing of the Lord Brook 's Cannon, some Soldiers and Horses were slain, and the like Misfortune besel some of the Lord Brook 's Men, but the Welch-men, who were with the Earl of Northampton, quickly gave Ground; whereupon Capr. Leg riding hastily to make them stand, mistook the Ground, and rode up to a Troop of the Parliament's Forces, where he was taken Prisoner by Major Ballard.
The Lord Chandois endeavoured to put the said Commission in Execution in Gloucestershire, but was opposed and astronted at Cirecester in that County. Sir John Packington and Mr. Sands, endeavoured the like in Worcestershire. Sir John Sackvile and Sir Nicholas Crisp, endeavoured the like in Kent, but were prevented.
In some Counties, as in Yorkshire, Cheshire and Lancashire, there was an Endeavour to make an Association of Neutrality; which being drawn to some Heads in the County of York, between Ferdinando Lord Fairfax, Mr. Hen. Bellasis, Sir Will. Savile and others; the Lord Fairfax sent the Heads thereof to the Parliament, declaring he had not agreed thereunto, unless it were with their Liking and Approbation: Against which Association, the Parliament set forth the following Declaration.
The Declaration and Votes of the Lords and Commons assembled in Parliament, concerning the late Treaty of Peace in Yorkshire.
Upon perusal of certain Articles, dated the 29th of September 1642, betwixt the Lord Fairfax, and divers others well-affected to the Peace of the Kingdom, and Mr. Bellasis and others, who have declared themselves in sundry Actions, opposers of the Proceedings of the Parliament, and furtherers of the War raised against them; and of many grievous Pressures lately exercised upon the good Subjects, Inhabitants of the County of York. And being confident, That if the Lord Fairfax, and the rest of the Gentlemen on his part, had known by what Acts and Designs this Agreement was plotted on the other side, and how dangerous and mischievous it must needs be, both in the Effect and in the Consequence, their good Intentions to the Peace of that County, and of the Kingdom are such, that they never would have consented to any thing so prejudicial thereunto, as this seeming Neutrality would be, by making that County many ways serviceable to those ill Counsels, whereby his Majesty is incited against his Subjects, and no way useful to the Parliament in protecting of them. Wherefore the Lords and Commons do declare,
- 1. That none of the Parties to that Agreement had any Authority, by any Acts of theirs, to bind that County to any such Neutrality as is mentioned in that Agreement, it being a peculiar and proper power and privilege of Parliament, where the whole Body of the Kingdom is presented, to bind all or any part thereof.
- 2. That it is very prejudicial and dangerous to the whole Kingdom, that one County should withdraw themselves from the Assistance of the left, to which they are bound by Law, and by several Orders and Declarations of Parliament.
- 3. That it is very derogatory to the Power and Authority of Parliaments, that any private Men should take upon them to suspend the Execution of the Ordinance of the Militia, declared by both Houses to be according to Law, and very necessary at this time for the preservation of the Peace and Safety of the Kingdom.
- 4. That many things in that Agreement are very unequal, contrary to the Nature of Neutrality, being much more advantageous to one Side than the other, prejudicial to the publick Defence of the Kingdom undertaken by the Parliament, and would be a great Impediment to the Agreement betwixt his Majesty and his Subjects; which both Houses so earnesty desire and endeavour.
For these and other Reasons, We hold our selves bound in Conscience, in performance of the several Protestations that we have made to hinder all further Proceedings upon that Agreement; and therefore it is Ordered by both Houses of Parliament, That no such Neutrality be observed in that County, which will advantage the Forces raised against the Parliament, and no way benefit Yorkshire, but rather be most dangerous to them, by keeping that County without any defensive Force; whereby it will be open to the King to bring back his Army at his pleasure, and to make that his Winter-quarter, to which the Plenty of that County, and nearness of Newcastle for Supplies by Sea, are like to invite him, whereby it will become a Seat of the War. And if this should not fall out, yet if the rest of the Kingdom he suppressed, what hope can Yorkshire have not to be involved in he publick Misery? And therefore in Wisdom for themselves, and Justice to the State, they ought not to withdraw themselves from the Common Cause, but join with the Parliament in defence of the Religion and Liberty of the whole Kingdom, and with them to labour, by all good Means, to procure a general Peace and Protection from the King for all his Subjects; which both the Houses of Parliament have, by many humble Petitions, desired of his Majesty, but cannot yet obtain. And if they should suffer any particular Counties to divide themselves from the rest of the Kingdom, it will be a Means of bringing all to Ruin and Destruction. Wherefore it is further declared, That neither the Lord Fairfax, nor the Gentlemen of Yorkshire, who are Parties to those Articles, nor any other Inhabitants of that County, are bound by any such Agreement, but they are required to pursue their former Resolutions, of maintaining and assisting the Parliament in defence of the Common Cause, according to their general Protestation, wherein they are bound with the rest of the Kingdom, and against the particular Protestation by themselves lately made; and according to such Orders and Commissions as they shall receive from both Houses of Parliament, from the Committee of Lords and Commons, appointed for the Safety of the Kingdom, or from the Earl of Essex Lord-General.
A Declaration of both Houses, touching Ministers troubled in Cheshire, for not obeying the Commission of Array, September 8th. 1642.
Whereas Information hath been given, That divers Persons, well-affected to the Peace and Safety of the King and Kingdom, have been seized, apprehended, and imprisoned; and divers worthy Ministers attached and bound over to the next Assizes to be holden at Chester, for yielding Obedience to the Ordinance and Command of Parliament and for refusing to obey the illegal Commands of the Commissioners of Array. The Lords and Commons do therefore hereby declare all those to be Enemies to the Common-Wealth, and Disturbers of the Peace of the Kingdom, who seize apprehend, or detain, imprison, or send out their Warrants for the apprehending or otherwise molesting any Person or Persons for obeying the Ordinances and Commands of the Parliament, or for refusing to obey the Commssion of Array. And do require and and command all Lord-Lieutenants, Deputy-Lieutenants, Justices of Peace, Sheriffs, Mayors, Constables, and all other his Majesty's Officers and loving Subjects, that they do not only forbear to execute any Warrants sent out by the Commissioners of Array for the apprehending or binding over to the Assizes; or otherwise molesting any of his Majesty's good Subject; for not yielding Obedience to the illegal Warrants and Commands of the Commissioners of Array, but that they also assist to the Protection and Defence of all those who are in danger to be apprehended, oppressed or molested, by the Violence and Tyranny of the Commissioners of Array.
Whereof they require the Justices of Assize of the Country Palatine of Chester, and the Keeper of the Castle of Chester and of other Prisons in the said County, and all others his Majesty's Officers and subjects, whom it may concern, to take special Notice, that so those that are already imprisoned, or bound over by the Commissioners of Array in that County, may be discharged, and no further prosecuted and molested by any usurped Power and Authority against the Laws of the Land.
[The Author returns to the Diary of May 1642.]
Having thus from the Month of April 1642, dispatch'd the great Affair of Hull, and followed the Tract of Occurrence at York as far as was necessary in the Two last Chapters, we now return to reassume the Course of Diary, and set down other intervening Passages in the Month of May, and other subsequent Months.