Historical Collections of Private Passages of State: Volume 8, 1640-41. Originally published by D Browne, London, 1721.
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The Four and Twentieth Article.
24. That in the same Month of May, he the said Earl of Strafford, falsly, traitorously, and maliciously, published and declared before others of His Majesties Privy Council, That the Parliament of England had forsaken the king, and that in denying to supply the king, they had given him advantage to supply himself by other wayes; and several other times he did maliciously, wickedly, and falsly, Publish and declare, That seeing the parliament had refused to spply His Majesty in the ordinary and usual way, the king might provide for the kingdom in such wayes, as he should hold fit, and that he was not to suffer himsels to be mastered by the frowardness and undutifulness of the People: And having so maliciously slandered the said late House of Commons, he did with the advice of the said Archbishop of Canterbury, and the Lord Finch, late keeper of the Great Seal of England, cause to be printed and published in His Majesties name, a false and scandalous Book, Entituled, His Majesties Declaration of the Causes that moved him to Dissolve the last Parliament, full of bitter and malicions Invectives, and false, and scandalous aspersions against the said House of Commons.
Monday, April 5, 1641.
The Right Honourable the Lord Steward did this Day in the first place, acquaint the Gentlemen that managed the Evidence at the Bar, That their Lordships had commanded him to let them know, that my Lord of Strafford on Saturday in the Evening, gave in his Petition for the Examination of my Lord of Northumberland; and that he coming in so late, it happened so, that the Gentlemen of the House of Commons could not possibly have Leave to cross examine, and so the Examinations are come only on one Side, sealed up; wherefore his Lordship proposed, that Things might for the present be so carry'd, as the Proceedings of this Day might not be hindred thereby.
Mr. Whitlock Answered, That they shall go on according to their Lordships Order, but he desired the Cross-examination of my Lord of Northumberland, and the Testimony of some other Witnesses that are sent for, and not yet come (whose Names they shall give in) may be reserved.
To which my Lord of Strafford reply'd, That the Motion is very new to him, and in these Things of Form, he may be easily mistaken, and prejudiced before he is aware: That to the Cross-examining of my Lord of Northumberland, he is very willing; but for examining Witnesses whose Names are not yet known, and to have such a Latitude as to reserve supplemental Proof, he conceives may be hard, and so appeals to their Lordships, Whether their Lordships will not have them name their Witnesses, and assign them a certain Time, within which they shall examine them. And he desires likewise the Examination of my Lord Keeper, who is not yet examined, may be reserved for him. And likewise that my Lord of Canterbury may be examined, he having been examined, (as he understood) against him, which if he had not been, he should not have moved it: And that the Advantage of their two Testimonies may be reserved to him.
But Mr. Whitlock and Mr. Maynard thus explained it, That they intend not to examine those who are not yet named in Writing, but to produce them viva voce; and that they should take the Boldness to name one of them to their Lordships, and that is Mr. Serjeant Glanvile who was sent for Eight Days since, and will be in Town to Night. And for my Lord of Canterbury, if they have examined him, it was before his Charge, and they shall make no use of his Examination, neither is he a Person capable of being a Witness, being now charged, and in some Particulars, for Conspiring with the Lords at the Bar, and therefore they submit it, Whether it be convenient he should be examined, though if they shall urge his Testimony, it will be something; and likewise their Lordships over-ruled it in Sir George Ratcliff's Case. But my Lord of Strafford submitting all to their Lordship good Pleasure, it being his Part only to move (as his Lordship said, and do what their Lordships should in their Wisdoms think fit. The Lord Steward declared their Lordships Pleasure, That Serjeant Glanvill and the other Witnesses might he reserved to be heard to Morrow viva voce; and that the Examinations of my Lord of Northumberland, and my Lord Keeper might be likewise reserved; for my Lord at Canterbury it was observed, that he was examined before the Charge, and that the Gentlemen of the Commons-House intend not to make use of his Testimony. And so the Committee proceeded to the next Article.
Mr. Whitlock proceeded, putting their Lordships in Mind, That they had been pleased to take a view of my Lord of Strafford's Courses in Ireland, which have manifested his Design to subvert and change the Law and bring in an Arbitrary Government; That his execution of that Arbitrary Power upon the Persons, Estates and Lives of the King's Subjects there, hath been a clear Proof of this his Design. They shall now proceed to show their Lordships what his Design was in England and Scotland, as the same was set forth in the 20th 21, 22, 23, and 24th Articles, together with the Matters contained in them, they being interwoven and depending one upon the other, and so are but one Business.
My Lord of Strafford did thereupon offer, That he conceived it was agreed, they should go Article by Article, that his Memory is short, and his Abilities weak; and if three or four be brought together, his Memory will not serve him to give them that account, that otherwise he should be able to do; And since the order of proceeding Article by Article was by consent, he besought that Course might be persued, not giving consent to the alteration of it.
But Mr. Maynard desired leave to remember their Lordships, that they offered to go Article by Article, till they came to some that were woven together, which might change the Course. They find much time is lost between Article and Article, and there will need no great Consideration of these, being only about Words; and when my Lord of Strafford stands by way of Defence, he may not inform them which way to proceed, and they will proceed no way differently from what was formerly proposed.
My Lord of Strafford humbly appealed to their Lordships, Whether the Favour offered him for recollecting his Notes, had spent much time; and added, perhaps if another Man had been in his Case, he would have thought as long a time as he had taken, necessary, tho' a far abler Man than himself; but this inverts the whole Order agreed on, and brings him to a great Inconvenience, and therefore he desired he might Answer them single, in the manner as was agreed upon.
To which Mr. Whitlock Answered, That if the Articles be not proceeded in together, and as having relation to one another, they will loose much of the Application, Evidence, and Proof; and he conceives will be more easie to my Lord of Strafford: And for the Order mentioned, there was, under favour, no Order in it; but when my Lord of Strafford made the Motion (Mr. Whitlock said) he took the boldness to inform their Lordships, that he should proceed on some of them altogether, which my Lord of Strafford did not deny, and their Lordships approved of, and according to that they desire to proceed.
Mr. Glyn adding, That he never knew before this Time, a Prisoner at the Bar prescribe a Method to the Evidence, especially if he be charged with High Treason; and my Lord may afford them the same Favour they do him, for if he will answer Article by Article, he may; but as they leave him to his Course, so they desire to take their Course.
But in that Case my Lord of Strafford desired he might have Time to Answer till to Morrow Morning, and professed that he should be extream unwilling to offer any Thing that became him not in Humility and Modesty, or to prescribe a Course to any, he being in his Condition; but he trusts he may with Humility and Duty, offer to their Lordships Consideration, these Things that may be for his Assistance and Defence, without Offence to any.
Mr. Whitlock then proceeded to open the Charge of these Articles, which will refer, to prove a Design of my Lord of Strafford against Scotland, to subvert their Parliament, and our Government here, and to bring in an Army on us, to force us to submit to an Arbitrary Power.
First, they shall apply themselves to prove his Design against Scotland, which lies first in the Charge; That he advised the King two or three Times, That the Demands made by the Scots in their Parliament, were a sufficient Ground for a War against them, notwithstanding that Parliament was indicted by the King's Royal Authority, and they have their Liberty to Propound and Treat.
Your Lordships may remember what my Lord of Strafford said at the Sentencing of Stewart in Ireland, whereby he expressed his Hatred and Rancour towards them, and his Opinion of them at that Time, being after the Pacification made, and he continues in the same ill Opinion of them, and to give the same ill Council.
That he procured the Parliament in Ireland to declare their Assistance, and to give Supply for a War against Scotland, and that several times he endeavoured to persuade His Majesty to an offensive War against the Scots, under which Particulars will fall in Proof, his Design against Scotland.
His Design against England was of the same Nature; which will appear by his Words and by his Councils, and by some Speeches given out by those that have very near Relation to him, and are his Creatures, who agreed with his own Words likewise.
They shall prove to their Lordships, That on a Discourse between Sir George Ratcliffe and Sir Robert King, concerning the War with the Scots, and my Lord of Strafford's being engaged in it. Sir George Ratcliffe told him, We are engaged in a War with the Scots, and we must go on with it; and being demanded, How the King would do, if he were not supplied by Parliament? He said, The King hath 3000 Men, and 400000 l. in his Purse, and his Sword by his Side; and if he wants Money, who could pity him? That he said likewise, he could make Peace with the Scots when he lift, but that was the worst of Evils.
There were other Words spoken by Sir George Wentworth, my Lord of Strafford's Brother, to a Gentleman, a Member of the House of Commons; That England was sick of Peace, and it would never be well with it, till it were again conquered. These were the Words of others, his Creatures, They shall prove his Lordship's own Words and Counsels.
That he declared his Opinion to the Lord Primate of Ireland, That in Case of Necessity, His Majesty might use his Prerogative, to levy what he needed, saving first co try the Parliament, and is that supply him not, then to use his Prerogative as he pleased.
That at another Time when my Lord Conway, a Nobleman of this House, was pleased to ask him, How the Forces raised, and to be raised, should be paid? My Lord of Strafford said, He doubted not but Twelve Subsidies would be given. My Lord Conway putting the Doubt to him again, What if they should not be given? My Lord of Strafford was pleased to reply, Then the King would be acquitted before God and Men, if he took some other Course to supply himself, though it were against the Will of the Subject.
At another Time when His Majesty had Graciously declared himself, That he would have a Parliament; he was pleased to say, That in Case the Parliament should not supply him, he would be ready to serve him in any other Way. These Words and Counsels were all before the Calling of the last Parliament.
In the Time of the Sitting of the Parliament, the House of Commons were frequently urged by Messages procured by my Lord of Strafford, from His Majesty, to take Consideration of the King's Supply for a War against Scotland; and before Consideration and Relief of the Grievances in Religion and Government of the Kingdom, 12 Subsidies were demanded, for Release of the Ship Money only, and when the House of Commons were in Debate concerning Supply, and before they came to Resolution, by Advice of my Lord of Strafford, that Parliament was Dissolved.
After the Parliament was Dissolved, they shall show, how, by divers Words and Counsels, my Lord of Strafford endeavoured to incense His Majesty against His loving Subjects, and so to slander them to His Majesty, as to make a Division between them: And also of his Design to bring in an Army upon us.
That he declared to His Majesty, That the Parliament had denied to supply him, and had quite forsaken him: And that he said to a Noble Earl of that House, That the Parliament in this great Distress of the King and Kingdom, had refused to supply the King in an ordinary and usual Way, and therefore the King might provide for the Kingdom, by such Ways, as he thought fit; and that the King was not to suffer himself to be mastered by the Frowardness and Undutifulness of his People.
That he said at another Time to a Nobleman in this House, That the Parliament in denying to supply the King, had given him Advantage to supply himself by other Ways. And if worse Words can be uttered or spoken, than what have been mentioned, they shall conclude with such of the Words, as none can be imagined to be of more fearful and dangerous Consequence, viz. the same Day that the Parliament was dissolved, my Lord of Strafford, by Way of Advice and Counsel, told His Majesty, That now he had tryed the Affections of His People, and that he was loose, and absolved from all Rules of Government: That he was to do all that Power would admit; since he had tryed all Ways, and was refused, and should, in so doing, be acquitted before God and Men, and that he had an Army in Ireland, which he might employ to reduce his Kingdoms.
They began with that which concerned Scotland; The Earl of Traquair being Sworn, was asked, What he remembred to be spoken by my Lord of Strafford, concerning the Demands made by the Scots in their Parliament, when he (my Lord Traquair) made Relation of those Demands, with the Time, and other Circumstances.
He Answered, That it would be hard for him to answer to so general a Question; for their Lordships, and a great many know, that he made Relation of the Demands made by the Scotch Subjects in Parliament, at two several Times, one by the King's Command here, before the Lords of the Council: Another by the like Command of His Majesty, before the Peers at York.
His Lordship Answered, That he could hardly give an Answer to such a general Question; but he believed my Lord of Strafford when he was at Council, gave his Opinion in any Thing brought in Debate, as the Lords of the Council did: He knew what was brought in Debate, but cannot condiscend to every Thing that my Lord spake there.
Mr. Whitlock here interposed, and said, That he mentioned not the particular Words, that might come from my Lord Traquair's own Expression; but the Question he desired, was, Whether my Lord Strafford did not say, The Demand of the Scotch Parliament was a sufficient Ground for the War?
He Answered, That he should very clearly declare to the best of his Memory, what he heard upon that Occasion; but for the present he could not remember particularly, of any such Words expressed by my Lord of Strafford here at Whitehall (for he believes it was there when the Council met, when he made the first Relation). But he remembred he was Deponed on these before, and if it might stand with their Lordships Pleasure and Form, he would willingly remit himself to his former Deposition.
Mr. Palmer insisted on it, it being not offered as a Proof to be heard but because it was tendered to him to vary (being on his Oath) though but in a Syllable, from what he had spoken before; And Mr. Glyn added, That this is very ordinary at Law. But my Lord of Portland moved that the House might be Adjourned, that the Examinations should not be made use of.
My Lord Traquair desired, That he might not be mistaken, for he would express his Reasons, and humhly submit it to their Lordships, That he was by Order of their Lordships, examined on Oath before, and examined on the same Question, and he only submitted this to their Lordships, whether or not their Lordships would allow him to remit himself to the Depositions in writing? And if it was not fit, nor consisted with their Lordships, Pleasure, he should go on to the best of his Memory, and if he keep not the very Words, he should keep the Sense. And this, he said, was that he might not vary from any Thing that was in his written Deposition.
Mr. Maynard to induce their Lordships thereunto, instanced, That if a Man writes a Thing in a Book, and he after produced as a Witness, the Witness may have leave to look on his own Book, much more when he is examined, and there can be no Suspicion of Fraud in this.
The Lord Traquair then proceeded, and said; All that he remembred in this Particular, to the best of his Memory, was upon Occasion of a Debate at York, at the King's Majesty's last being there; where it was required, That he should make that same Relation before the Peers, who were to meet the next Day after, that he had made at the Council-Board here: Some Question having been made, What should be the Ground or Occasion of this Relation again, since it was conceived, the Business was not in the same Condition it was, at the Time of his making his first Relation: Because, as it was alledged at the Time of making this Relation, That it was only of Demands, and these Demands had been represented by the Commons of Parliament to His Majesty, with other Demands; and likewise in Parliament they had made these Demands pass into an Act: It was therefore represented by some, That there was not a Necessity of making the same Relation he had before; But of the Demands only, and not the Case of the Business, as it stood before.
And upon this, (wherein he shall not be obliged to Words, but something to this Sense) my Lord of Strafford expressed, That he conceived, That the unreasonable Demands of Subjects in Parliament, was a Ground for the King to put himself into a Posture; or to this Sense: And his Lordship repeated, and explained it; That the unreasonable Demands of Subjects, was a Ground for the King to put himself into a Posture of War.
His Lordship said, the Words were, That the unreasonable Demands of Subjects in Parliament (for it was on the Scotch Demands) my Lord conceived, might be a Ground for the King's Majesty, to put himself into a Posture of War.
He Answered, That all the Demands made to the King's Commissioner, are in Parliament, or by the Parliament; and here he said, he was forced to make a little Digression, if he Answered to this, for the Parliaments there, use not that Way that the Parliament doth here: For he being the King's Commissioner, Propositions, and Demands, and Articles were made for him which are the preparatory Ways of Parliaments; and some Commissioners from the Gentry and Nobility, made Motions and Demands to him in private, before they were voted in publick. And of them all, he was tyed to make an Account. All were made in Parliament, or by Warrant of Parliament, or by some Body of the Parliament.
He Answered, That truly as he believes the Occasion of this came upon this Debate, and he believed there were some of the Lords of the Parliament, by Way of Debate, of another Opinion, as he remembred it. And particularly my Lord Morton said, He was of another Opinion, to the best of his Memory.
He Answered, That he believed in this there might be a Mistake, for at that Time he made no Relation, but was to make a Relation next Morning before the Peers, and this was the only Debate, Whether he should make Relation or not ? But at that Time at York no Relation was made before the Council, but before the Peers next Morning.
He Answered, That it is very well known to a great many Lords here, that he (by His Majesty's Command) made a Narrative of the Demands made to him in Parliament by the Subjects of Scotland. In which Relation (he hoped my Lord's Memory would serve) he left the Commissioners, who were coming up, by Warrant from His Majesty, on Petition, to give a Reason of their Demands. This he did, and it was his greatest Care to do it faithfully and ingenuously, without burdening of any whom it concerned: And, to burden his Memory, who spake first, and who spake last, he could not tell; but, on Debate of the Business, something was proposed to the Table, and every Man declared his Opinion; and, he think, they all agreed in one; but, who spake first, and who last, he knows not.
He Answered, That he remembers that (which he hopes all my Lords well remember) on that Relation of his, the King's Majesty being then present in Person, was graciously pleased to take Notice of that, he (the Deponent) had there affirmed, That some one (he thinks his Name was Cunningham) was sent from the Parliament of Scotland, to supplicate His Majesty to allow some of their own Members to come up to his Presence, and present their Demands. The King was pleased it should be so; and when they were all of the same Opinion, the King condescended to it; and, to the best of his Remembrance, it was consented to by my Lord of Strafford and the whole Board; That at their coming up, if they should not give good Reasons and Satisfaction for their Demands, they would be assistant to His Majesty to put him in a Posture, to reduce them to their due Obedience; but he cannot tye himself to Words.
He Answered, That he made a Narrative Relation, and a Narrative Relation only: And the Commissioners, whom His Majesty was pleased to condescend to their coming up, to give Reasons of their Demands, that the Scotch Subjects had made in Parliament This being the State of the Question; and the Kings Majesty graciously condescending, that some of their own Members should come up, to represent their own Demands; It was put to the Question, What should be done? And this was the Conclusion (to his Memory, there being no Clerk nor Register there, wherein my Lord of Strafford was no more involved then the rest; that if these Commissioners should not, at their coming up, give good satisfaction touching their Demands, the Council would be assistant to His Majesty, to put Him into a Posture of War, to reduce them to their Obedience. He will not say, these very Words were reported again to my Lords at York, but the Sense and Way of them was.
My Lord Digby did here desire leave of their Lordships, to represent something on Consideration of that, which was last in Question, touching the Witnesses helping themselves by their former Examinations. He did forbear it before, in regard he saw this Honourable Lord, for his own particular, did not insist on it; But, for the future, he thought it very necessary to represent it to their Lordships, as a thing not only much concerning the validity of the Proofs, but likewise very much conducing to the honour of many of their Lordships here; and, concerning the validity of their Proofs, he shall humbly offer this to their Lordships. That this Noble Lord was often pleased to say, That he hoped he should not be tied to Words: Now, their Lordships may be pleased to consider the Charges of the present Articles are consisting principally of Words; to say, he shall not be tied to Words, is as much as to say, he shall not be tied to the Question. And- this he offered not only concerning the validity of the Proofs; but concerning the honour of some Noble Lords that sit here, he confesses he is very zealous in that when he thinks of it; that divers of them have been Examined formerly upon Oath, and upon Oath set down, without great Leasure, and Recollection of the truth of things: and now whether (so many Months after, being call'd again suddenly on Oath, to give an account of these Words) the best Memory may not be subject: to variance and discrepansie, and may not forget some prejudice and disadvantage to those noble Lords honour, he humbly submits to their Lordships.
And Mr. Glyn added, That this Noble Lord hath prevented him; My Lord of Traquair hath not vary'd from his Examinations in substance, but if he had under savour, they must stand upon his Examinations; and, it is Legal, and Just, and Ordinary; and never a Judge in England will deny it; that if a Witness be examined, and varies, his Examinations shall be read to his Face, and it is no prejudice, for the Party is ready to explain himself; And, he said, he was about the offering it, and now must offer it, according to the trust. reposed in him by the House of Commons; that, if it stand with their Occasions, the Examinations may be read, and under favour, they may.
To this my Lord of Strafford Answered, That here is a Question now stirred, that hath been hitherto denied; for, he could leave out any Examinations taken, and certainly, as he conceives, it was never intended, that these Examitions should be made use of. They were preparatory and no other: And (by this learned Gentleman's leave) whereas he speaks of the Manner of Proceedings on Tryals of ordinary Felons, he (the Desendant) hath seen some of them; and, in all Particulars, where the Witness hath been viva voce, he never heard Examinations read.
But, Mr. Glyn averred what he said before; That if there be Examinations taken of a Felon at Common Law, and the Witness comes viva voce; and the King's Council takes Advantage, they do Read the Examinations taken.
My Lord Traquair thereupon further alledged, That this was the first time he was ever examined upon Oath; and if he hath been occasion of any Scruple, he desired Pardon: But it was long since he was Examined, and he could not see his Depositions; and, left he should have erred in his Words, he desired this Favour.
Mr. Whitlock further added, That they must affirm this to be the ordinary and constant Practice; and if their Lordships doubt it, it shall be made good: And, he hopes the Commons of England shall not be in worse Case, than an ordinary Prosecutor.
And Mr. Glyn added, That he perceived by my Lord of Strafford, that he expected Notice, what Witnesses they were ready to produce, and his Lordship, knew what Witnesses will be necessary for his Defence, and should be careful of them: But, Mr. Glyn said further, That he thought never any Prisoner expected to know from the Prosecutor, what Witnesses would be produced against him.
My Lord of Strafford confess'd, he might easily mistake, for never did so ignorant a Man, in their Proceedings stand at the Bar: But, he concenceived, that if the other Party do examine, it stands with Reason they should give him Notice of it, else he cannot possibly Cross-examine.
Mr. Whitlok thereunto reply'd, That their Examinations are taken preparatorily, and it is according to Course of Law; That, if any Witnesses die, or be necessarily absent, their Examinations be used at the Tryal.
So my Lord Steward put an End to this Matter, saying, That if it can be, the Witnesses, by the Order of the House, shall be Examined viva voce; if not, upon Faith made, the Examinations are to be heard. And then they proceeded to Read the Examinations of the Earl of Morton, taken 23 January, 1640. by Vertue of, and according to a Commission under the Great Seal of England, issued in Parliament, and dated 11 Jan. 1640.
To the 103. Interrogatory, This Examinant faith, That he was present at York, the Night before the meeting of the Great Council of the Peers of England, then at a Debate before His Majesty, touching the Ground of that War against the Scots.
To 104. He saith, that at, or in the said Debate, he heard the Earl of Strafford, in His Majesty's Presence, say, That the unreasonable and exorbitant Demands made by the Scots in their Parliament, were a sufficient Ground to make a War against them; and that the King needed not to seek for any other Grounds for it, or Words to that Effect.
To 105. That towards the End of the said Debate, this Examinant told His Majesty, That His Majesty having given the Scots Leave, in their Parliament to Petition for Redress of such Things, as they conceived to be Grievances, he said, His Majesty would not think it a sufficient Ground, to make War against them for any Demands by them made in Parliament, without first hearing the Reasons thereof, which Reasons were not before that Time related at, or in any Meeting of the Council, whereat this Examinant was present; howbeit the said Earl of Strafford again said, That there was Ground enough for that War. After which his Majesty was pleased to say, That this Examinant had Reason, for what this Examinant did then say.
Whence Mr. Whitlock observed, That my Lord Morton went further then was opened; For though he told His Majesty, that which was treated on in Parliament, especially by the King's Leave, and before the Reason of these Demands were declared, was not a sufficient Ground of a War; yet notwithstanding, my Lord of Strafford, though he heard not these Reasons, nor knew whether they were unlawful or no, (he was not versed in Republica aliena) yet he reiterates and declares his Advice again to His Majesty, That these Demands were a sufficient Ground of War.
To 106. He saith, That when my Lord Traquair made Relation at the Council Table of the Demands made by the Scots in their Parliament, without rendring any Reason of the said Demands, as leaving this to the Scotch Commissioners, who were on their Way, coming towards His Majesty, by His Majesty's Leave and allowed to yield their Reasons in that behalf: Which Course of the said Earl of Traquair's, in leaving the said Reasons to the said Commissioners, His Majesty well approv'd of, and pleased himself to expect from him a Relation only, what the said Demands were; this Examinant, on the said Occasion, heard the said Earl of Strafford say to His Majesty, after the said Demands so related, That the said Demands were not Matters of Religion, but such as did strike at the Root of Government, and such as he thought were fit for His Majesty to punish by Force; or Words to such Effect.
Whence Mr. Whitlock observed, That the Words last read, were spoken by my Lord of Strafford, at that Time, when my Lord Traquair made a Relation before the Council here, which was a great while before the second Relation at York, before the great Council of the Peers. And, though the King himself, in his Clemency and Goodness, thought that a sufficient Reason; to do no more upon it at that time, having not heard the Reason; yet my Lord of Strafford was pleased then to give Him this Counsel.
And, from these Proofs, Mr. Whitlock conceived it to stand proved, That my Lord of Strafford laboured to persuade His Majesty to an Offensive War, to imbroil both Kingdoms in a National Quarrel, and the Blood one of another, and this several Times; and that at Whitehall being Three Quarters of a Year before the other, which was at the Council at York.
Sir Henry Vane, Treasurer of His Majesty's Houshold, and Principal Secretary of State, was Sworn, and Interrogated, What Advice my Lord of Strafford gave to His Majesty, concerning making of a War with Scotland; or seizing their Lordships?
He Answered, That he should be very glad to understand the Question clearly, before he makes an Answer; for, to part of it, he is able to say nothing: that is, Concerning the Ships of Scotland, he not hearing of it till now. And, he will be sorry here, to say any Thing that is not true; for, he conceives, the Witnesses were put upon a great Strait. The Examinations were taken long since; and, for his part, he hath seen none of them: And he besought their Lordships, to take so much Care of them, that they may not be subject to cross what was said before; and, peradventure bespatter ourselves, when we ought to have our Memories a little refreshd, in it. This, he said, he thought fit to speak before he Answers the Question; and, if he be asked such a Question as he cannot clearly Answer. to, he shall do it candidly and ingenuously; but, to the Ships, he can say nothing.
He Answered, saying, That to that Question he is able to speak; and, he is the better able (which he may declare to their Lordships here) because His Majesty hath been pleased, out of the Justice and Equality he owes to all his Servants, to give him Leave to do it: To that Point then, this he says, clearly and plainly, Whether it were upon the 5th Day of May, or no, he is not able to say; but either that Day, or shortly after, where divers of my Lords were present, being commanded, after the Breach of the Parliament, to speak what was fit to be done, and every Man to Vote in his own Turn, and he amongst the rest took his Turn; and he must say, That after Mr. Secretary Windebank had spoken first of it, it came to him: There were then divers Reasons agitated, which do not occurr to his Memory; but this he remembers well, a Defensive War was proposed, for it was proposed by himself: Thereupon that was not thought fit to be done; and certainly my Lord of Strafford was of Opinion for an Offensive War. This he can say; and this is all he can say to this Point.
He Answered, That this was new to him; and, he could say nothing to it in particular; but what in general came to his Knowledge; That so many Subsidies were given to the King; and that is all he can say, having not heard of the Question till now.
Which Objection Mr. Whitlock taking off, by offering to their Lordships, that for which they desir'd to reserve him, was another Matter, they now desiring his Examinations only to the Point, of my Lord of Strafford's persuading the King to an Offensive War against the Scots.
To the 6th Interrogatory, he saith, That the said Lord-Lieutenant did, after the Breach of the last parliament, advice His Majesty, To go vigorously on in an Offensive, and not Defensive War against the Scots.
The Lord Bishop of London, Lord Treasurer of England, Sworn, and Interrogated, What he knew concerning the Earl of Strafford's, giving Advice to His Majesty, to go on in an Offensive War against the Scots, before or after the Breach of the last Parliament?
He Answered, That all he remembred of my Lord of Strafford's Advice, touching a War, was, That which he gave publickly in Council at the Council-Board; for, he remembred not any single Advice that he gave at all. The Advice given by his Lordship (the Deponent) at the Council-Board, after the Relation made by my Lord (the Earl of Traquair) to the best of his Remembrance, was this; My Lord Traquair did make a Relation before His Majesty, and my Lords, of what had passed in the Parliament of Scotland, and of many Demands made there; whereunto they did desire to have His Majesty's Consent and Approbation: His Majesty was pleased to signify to those Lords, That, among these Demands, there were some of them very prejudicial to that; Crown: insomuch, that He could by no means give way to, and consent to them, with His Honour and Safety, and thereupon the Advice, or Opinion, given, was, (and then was given by my Lord the Earl of Strafford, (as Well as others of my Lords) and the Demands, being of that Nature, as they were then informed, and the Commissioners, as he remembers, being then come up, or at least ha Licence to come up;) it was Resolved upon, That, in Case they did insist upon those Demands, that had been so related, and would not recede nor alter, nor submit otherwise, then His Majesty should prepare Himself to reduce them by Force; this he takes to be my Lord of Strafford's Expression, and the Substance of what was there delivered.
He Answered, That he remembers upon a Meeting afterwards, of casting up the Charges, and other Things, there was a Discourse of it, Whether it was best to have a War, as only Defensive (the War being then Resolved upon) or to make an Offensive War? that is, to enter into Scotland with Force: And there were divers Opinions in't, and he believes my Lord did incline to the Opinion, for an Offensive War.
He Answered, That every Man there, express'd himself in such sort as he thought fit; some in one kind, some in another; but he did not observe any Difference as to the main, in the Opinion of any Man.
He Answered, That Sir Robert Loftus had a Place under my Lord Admiral, and had seized on some Scotch Ships and Boats; and, that others fled away: And that Sir George Ratcliffe was angry that he spoke of it in so publick a Place, as to give them Occasion to run away; but, the Time he doth not remember: And, he thinks, Sir Robert Loftus was Vice-Admiral of Lemster; but, he cannot take his Oath that the Warrant was from my Lord of Strafford; but, Sir Robert told him, He had a Warrant.
And so Mr. Whitlock said, They would leave it, as to the Matter of Scotland, and observed the Proofs. That when a Free Parliament was Convened there by the King's Authority, and had Liberty to treat of their Grievances and Demands; and, when these Demands, by way of Narration, were declared in my Lord of Strafford's Hearing, though the Reasons of them were not then delivered: Yet my Lord of Strafford gave his Advice to the King, That these Demands made in Parliament were a sufficient Ground of a War against them, even after His Majesty had declared Himself satisfied, and would stay to hear the Reasons; but that would not satisfy my Lord of Strafford, he himself declared it at several Times, and before himself had heard the Reasons, That the Demands made by the King's Free Parliament, were a sufficient Ground of a War: And if it be so, (Mr. Whitlock said) he is sure then, Parliament or no Parliament, no Liberty, nor Property can subsist with it.
My Lord of Strafford hath declared his Intention and Design, to subvert the Parliament, and to subvert the Government of Scotland. That he persuaded the King to an Offensive War, and told the King, Their Demands were not Matter of Religion, but struck at the Root of Government, and that it was fit to punish them by Force; and on these Proofs it is conceived his Design was manifest. After this, Mr. Whitlock proceeded to shew also his Design against England, and began with the Testimony of my Lord Primate of Ireland.
To the 119th Interrogatory, he faith, That in or about April last past, in Discourse betwixt the Earl of Strafford, Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland, and this Examinant at Dublin in Ireland, touching the Levies of Money upon the Subject by the King, he did hear the said Earl of Strafford declare, That he did agree with those in England, who thought, that (in Case of imminent Necessity) the King might make use of his Prerogative, to levy what he needed, save that, (as his Lordship then further said, in his Opinion) His Majesty, was first to try His Parliament; and if that supply'd him not, then he might make use of his Prerogative, as He pleased Himself; or Words to that Effect.
He Answered to the said Question, That it was only for one Word, that he desired to look into the Paper, and it was, Whether in the latter end he did not say (or Words to that Effect) These Words about which he is examined, did pass between my Lord of Strafford and him in private Discourse, when (he believes) neither of them thought they should have been called to an Account for them; for they were then thinking of raising of Horse, and seeing but small Sums of Money, he asked my Lord, How these Forces should be paid? His Lordship Answered, He made no doubt, but that the Parliament would give Assistance to the King by 12 Subsidies; and if they did that, it would sufficiently pay the Army, or some such Words. But, said he (my Lord Conway) What if the Parliament shall not supply the King, or not give these Subsidies? Then my Lord of Strafford said, or Words to that Effect, That the King had need, and if the Parliament would not supply the King in those Things that were just and lawful to be supply'd; and if they would be so willful, as not to supply him; then the King was justified before God and Man, if he did help himself in the Goods of the Subjects (or to this Effect) tho' it were against their Wills.
His Lordship Answered, That in his Examination he said Words to this Effect, and so he doth now, yet doth not depose absolutely, that these very Words were spoken, but to his Understanding, and as he then conceived them, they were to this Purpose; when he asked my Lord of Strafford, How these Troops then raised should be paid? My Lord of Strafford said, He made no doubt but the Parliament would supply the King, and give him 12 Subsidies. And saying again, What if the Parliament would not give him that Assistance? My Lord of Strafford said, The Cause was very just and lawful, and if the Parliament would not supply him, then he was justified before God and Man, if he sought Means to help himself, though it were against their Wills.
Sir Henry Vane being interrogated, Whether he did not hear my Lord of Strafford (when Consideration was had of a Parliament, before the last Parliament) promise His Majesty, in case the Parliament did not succeed, he would be ready to serve him in any other Way?
He Answered, That he must begin, as the Lord that spake last (since they have no Help of their Examinations) which is, That the Words were such, or to such an Effect; for otherwise, they that be Witnesses have a very hard Task to play, for they lie open to be excepted against, and peradventure when they speak truly, may be intangled, if their Memory help them not out. But to the Question proposed, he says this, That upon the 5th of December, as he takes it, he did hear my Lord of Strafford speak Words to that Effect, as they are now asked, to his best Remembrance: And truly (he thinks) really he did, viz. That truly if the Parliament should not succeed, his Lordship would be ready to assist His Majesty any other Way; or Words to this Effect.
Mr. Whitlock summed up the Evidence, and said, There was an Intent to call a Parliament, to try if they would give the King a Supply, and being ingaged in a War against the Scots, my Lord of Strafford before the Parliament came, doubted not but 12 Subsidies would be given, and while the Parliament was sitting, that was the Number demanded by a Message from the King.
This Design did not take other Effect than himself expected, and it seems desired; for when the Parliament was set, and frequently urged by Messages from His Majesty, to give that very number of 12 Subsidies, and that for Release of Ship-Money only; whereas by the old and right Course of Parliaments; the Grievances are in the first place to be considered of, and to be humbly presented to His Majesty; and upon Redress of those Grievances, the People are to shew their Thankfulness to His Majesty for His Grace and Goodness, in redressing of them, by their free Gift of Subsidies.
My Lord of Strafford changes this Course, and persuades His Majesty to put the Subsidies in the first place, and to fall at first on Consideration of Supply, and that so great a Proportion, and while the Parliament was in Debate of this, and before they were resolved whether they would give Supply or no, by my Lord of Strafford's Advice, the Parliament was Dissolved: His Lordship confesses in his Answer, he did give his Vote for Dissolving of the Parliament, and they shall make it appear in Time, That he did procure it.
After the Parliament was Dissolved, my Lord of Strafford goes on, endeavouring all that lay in his Power, to incense a Gracious Sovereign against His loving Subjects, to slander the People to the King, and for ever to break off all Parliaments, and take away the Liberty and Property of the Subject; and, By what Course? By Force, by bringing in an Army amongst us. That was his Advice, tho' (blessed be God) His Majesty was pleased to reject it.
Sir Ro. King being Interrogated, What Words he heard from Sir George Ratcliffe to this Purpose, That the King had an Army, and Money in his Purse, and if His Subjects in England should not supply him, what use he might make of His Army for Supply, and the Times?
He Answered, That he demanded of Sir George Ratcliffe, How the King would do for Money to maintain the Scotch War? Sir George Ratcliffe said, The King could not want Money, His Majesty had an Army of 30000 Men, and he had 400000l. in his Purse, and a Sword by his Side, and if he would want Money, who could pity him? or Words to that Purpose.
To which he the Deponent objected, How can this Course be taken, when the Scotch are on Foot unpacified? Sir George Answered, They can make Peace with the Scotch when they please; and being riding together to the — he the Deponent said, That my Lord-Lieutenant, and the said Sir George had least Reason of all His Majesty's Subjects to desire a War. Sir George Answered, It is true; for his part he would give 20000 l. to be quit of it, but we are now engaged, and we cannot but go on; then he (the Deponent) asking, What he would do for Money? Sir George Answered, The King could not want Money, He had an Army, &c. as before is deposed.
He Answered, That the Words he is to inform their Lordships of, and on which he was formerly examined, proceeded from Sir George Ratcliffe, not to him privately and only, but they were Spoken in a Council of War, when they were assembled together upon that Service. My Lord Lieutenant arrived in Ireland in March was 12 Months, and after his Lordship had spent some Days in Ireland, (within which Time he (the Deponent) with others; were commanded, to attend at a Council of War) departed that Kingdom, leaving Direction behind him, how this Affair should be proceeded in, in his Lordship's Absence; and as he takes it, in the Begiinning of April, my Lord departed out of Ireland; and not long after, they being assemblled in a Council of War, there was Occasion to speak of all Preparations that should be, for the raising of an Army of 8000 Foot, and Provision for Transportation of 1000 Horse, which was the Army of Ireland at that Time. In these Discourses they found there was a great deal of Treasure to be consumed, and much Money required, to supply the Occasion: It was computed (and he thinks, Sir George Ratcliffe had a privy Hand in the computing of it) how much Charge would maintain the Army for a Year? and to the best of his Remembrance, it was computed at 270000 l. and odd, which gave them Occasion (considering the Army to be transported out of Ireland, was but in Proportion 1/5 of what was prepared in England) to speak of the Charge that must be raised in England, according to that Proportion: And they finding it to amount to so great a Sum, it fell into Question, How the King would be supply'd with Money for so great Expence of Treasure, if he were not supply'd by Parliament? Sir George Ratcliffe Answered, The King hath his Sword by his Side, and 30000 Men at Command, and if he want Money, let no Man pity him. It was thereupon reply'd, and as he (the Deponent takes it, by himself) How can Money be raised, when the Scotch Army is on Foot, and so strong? Sir George Answered, We can make Peace with the Scots when we list, but that is the worst of Evils: And this is in Substance as much as the Deponent can remember.
Whence Mr. Whitlock observed, That their Lordships heard what passed from Sir George Ratcliffe in Words and Counsels, and that their Lordships knew the Nearness and Relation between Sir George Ratcliffe, and my Lord of Strafford, and this was after Direction was left for raising the Army; and when My Lord of Strafford was come away himself, it seems he had left his Directions with Sir George Ratcliffe, as it will appear by my Lord's own Words. concurring with these.
He Answered, That immediately after the last Parliament, Sir George Wentworth had accidentally a Discourse with him, being a Gentleman, with whom, he (the Deponent) never had intercourse or interlocution before that time. On some Discourse betwixt them concerning the former Parliament, in the close of his Discourse; he was pleased to express himself thus. This Commonwealth is sick of Peace, and will not be well till it be Conquered again. The Application of these Words, he (the Deponent) said, he must leave to their Lordships better Judgments, he not being able to decide it: And to the occasion, according to the Truth which shall be ever present with him, he (the Deponent) said he would deliver it clearly. They had some occasion to discourse of the former Parliament, and speaking now on his Oath, he must express that, which otherwise he should not, being the Words of a private Discourse, which in the Course of his Life he hath ever avoided especially in the Case of a Gentleman. They were in Discourse of the former Parliament, and the Carriage of that; and Sir George Wentworth was of one Opinion, and he (the Deponent) of another. Sir George expressed himself in this Sense, That he conceived the Parliament had no Intention to give the King Money, he (the Deponent) said, That if the Kings Majesty had pleased, they had fate awhile together; they had supplied him; And on the close, that Expression fell from him, that which he (the Deponent) said, he shall not need to repeat.
He Answered, That my Lord Ranalaugh did conceive, there was an Intention to take Money forcibly in England, and was much troubled with the Words, and cast out some such Speeches; That we shall turn our Swords on them from whom we are descended, and having cut their Throats, make way for our own Safety, or some such Words.
He Answered, That the Expression of these Words, and some other Words, that fell from my Lord-Lieutenant to himself, before his Lordship's departure out of Ireland, made him doubt that there might be some Danger intended, by the transportation of the Army; and it was not his Sense alone, for upon discourse betwixt others that were of the Council and himself, the like Apprehensions were amongst them, as between my Lord President of Munster and him; and also between Sir Adam Loftus and him: Those that durst be free one to another, did express their Fears and Apprehensions about it.
He Answered, That it was thus: My Lord of Strafford at his last being in Ireland, was pleased to say to him, My Lord, will you buy any Land? I will sell you all the Land I have in Ireland. To which, he the Lord Ranalaugh Answered, That he is not able to buy Land, being in debt, and God forbid his Lordship should sell his Land in Ireland; Truly, says he, my Lord we are like to have a troublesome World, and I am willing to part with it. To which, the Lord Ranalaugh replyed, it will be hard then with us, that have no Estates but in Ireland. No my Lord (says my Lord of Strafford) I do not mean it so, for I believe you will be quieter here, then they will be in England: But he doth not think that ever he spake these last Words to Sir Robert King in his Life.
He Answered, That the first Discourse was from Sir George Ratcliffe; the latter was from my Lord to himself. He apprehended there was some Design (as he seared) in England, and he had this reason for it too. For in that Condition they were then in, they of the Council of War saw no Possibility to make this Army in a readiness to invade Scotland within the time limited; for by Directions of my Lord of Strafford, left with them, they were to be ready at the Provincial Rendezvous, by the 18th of May, and that by subsequent Directions, was forborn till 18th June: then they all met, to march to the general Rendezvous; The Arms, Ammunition, and Preparations could not be ready so soon, nor were they in readiness, till the end of September following; So that on the whole Matter, those amongst them that might be free, their Consultations all agreed, That it might tend to the Purposes here declared.
And from the time observed by my Lord Ranalaugh, for the raising of the Army in Ireland, Mr. Whitlock observed, That it could not be intended for Scotland, for no Army was raised in Scotland, till some Months after.
Sir Tho. German Comptroller of His Majesty's Houshold, being Interrogated, Whether he heard not the Earl of Strafford tell the King, That the Parliament had denyed to supply him, and had forsaken him, or Words to that effect?
He Answered, That he should humbly presume to crave one Thing of their Lordships, and it was briefly this, There is nothing that he can be Interrogated upon in this Cause, but it must fall within the Cognizance and Knowledge of many of my Lords here present, who must needs remember all that he hath to say, as well, or perhaps better than he can himself; His humble desire therefore to their Lordships is, That if through distance of Time, and the weakness of his Memory, there be any thing that may be better remembred by some of their Lordships, than is at this time by himself, it may not be imputed to him, as from a Desire of concealing any part of the Truth, but a failure in Memory; and that their Lordships will believe of him, that in this great Assembly, he shall be very unwilling to speak any thing but, that that shall perfectly occurr to his remembrance, and that request granted, he shall humbly answer to every thing. And to the Question he remembers very well, that he was Interrogated upon the same Terms heretofore, that he is now. His Answer was then, as he takes it, in these words; That he remembred that he heard my Lord of Strafford say something of the Parliament's deserting, or forsaking the King, or something to that effect or purpose; but he did not remember then, what Inference my Lord made upon it, nor what he did conclude there upon; neither can he now call himself to further remembrance on that Point, than he then deposed.
The Earl of Bristol Sworn and Interogated, Whether he heard any words spoken by my Lord of Strafford, That in this great Distress of King and Kingdom, the Parliament had refused to supply the King in the ordinary and usual Way, and that therefore the King might provide for the Kingdom, by such Ways as he thought fit, and was not to suffer himself to be mastered by the Frowardness and Undutifulness of his People, or to that effect?
He Answered, That it is very true, that about 12 Months since, by meer accident, he had a private Discourse with my Lord of Strafford, and some Months after had Discourse with a Peer of this House, my Lord Conway by Name, meerly to let him know the Difference that was between some Tenets of my Lord of Straffords and himself (the Earl of Bristol) What use hath been made of it, he doth not know; But upon this, he doth conceive he comes to be Interrogated: It is almost Twelve Months ago, since this Discourse did happen, yet afterwards he was called, now a Month or Six Weeks since, and was examined on Oath on several Interrogatories; After he had well recollected himself, he did set down for his Memory, what he could think of, and out of those Notes and Papers, he did then make his Answer: Now his Examination being upon Oath, he shall be very loth to depose particularly to Words, but to the Effect of what passed: And therefore he shall crave leave, not out of his Examinations, but out of the Words he then set down, to read the effect of what he then spake; for if a Man be deprived of Words, and tell not the Sense and Coherence, and Subsequents, he shall not do himself Right, but may do a great deal of Wrong to the Party accused: and therefore, though it be somewhat the longer, he shall tell the Circumstances. It is true, That after the dissolution of the last Parliament, he had Discourse accidentally with the Earl of Strafford, but being many Months since, he cannot precisely depose unto the Words that then passed; But he remembers, that speaking then together of the great Distractions of those times (Videlicet) touching the present things, that were then at Lambeth (for it was just about that time of the Mutiny of some Soldiers against their Officers) of the present great Danger apprehended by the ensuing War (as was feared) of Scotland, and of the said Parliament being broken, without supplying the King; he (the Earl of Bristol) did then, in his Discourse chiefly attribute these Disorders to the Breach of the Parliament; And, speaking what might be the best Way for help in these distressed Times, he then conceived, and said, That he thought the best Way to prevent any desperate Undertakings, would be, to Summon a new Parliament, that might quiet the Times for the present.
The expectation thereof might quiet the Distempers at that time. And, as for the War of Scotland, he did much fear the success of it, unless the King should be assisted both with the Purse and Affections of his People. And he Alledging to my Lord of Strafford many Reasons for it, conceiving it was not likely, that our Nation, lying under great Grievances, should go willingly and chearfully to a War, labouring under the same Grievances with themselves. My Lord of Strafford (he must speak it, and confess it very ingenuously) seemed no way to dislike the Discourse; but said, He did not conceive it to be Counsellable at that time; neither did the present Dangers of the kingdom (which were not now imaginary, but real and pressing) admit of so slow and uncertain a Remedy, as a Parliment was; for that the Parliament had, in the great Distress of the King and Kingdom, refused now to supply the King, by the ordinary and usual way of Subsidies: and therefore the King must provide for the Safety of his Kingdom, by such Ways as He should think fit in his Wisdom. And he (the Earl of Bristol) doth remember, that the said Earl of Strafford, at the same time, did use the Sentence, Salus Republica Suprema Lex: And further (not to bind himself to Words, but to the Sense) at the same time, the Earl of Strafford used these Words, or Words to this effect. That the King was not to suffer himself to be mastered by the Frowardness and Undutifulness of his People, or rather (as he conceives) by the Disaffection and Stubborness of some particular Men.
Edward Lord Newburgh being Sworn, and Interrogated, Whether he did not hear my Lord of Strafford speak these Words to His Majesty, That the Parliament, in denying the King, had given him advantage to supply himself by other Ways?
His Lordship Answered, That those very Words he never heard, nor Words to that Effect. But, he hath Answered, in his Deposition, what he hath heard; and he shall desire to speak a little before he repeats it; And this it is. When he was Examined, he did then speak that which occurred to his Memory; but, since the agitation of this Business, something else hath come into his Thoughts; And, if he shall speak that which his Conscience now tells him, he shall desire my Lords that then Examined him, and the Gentlemen, not to misinterpret him, if he shall add something to what he formerly delivered. He cannot say, Whether (when be heard these Words) the King was by or no; for he doth not remember it: But, he very well remembers, That after the Breach of the last Parliament, he heard at the Gallery, or Council-Table, but he rather believes now at Council-Table, some Words to this Effect; That, seeing the Parliament had not supply'd the King, His Majesty might take other Courses, for Defence of the Kingdom: But though he cannot possibly Swear, my Lord-Lieutenant spake these Words; yet, he verily believes he heard him speak something to this Purpose: And, this is all he can testify.
Henry Earl of Holland Sworn, and Interrogated, Whether he did not hear my Lord of Strafford say to His Majesty, That the Parliament, in denying the King, had given Him Advantage to supply Himself by other Ways, or Words to that Effect?
His Lordship Answered, That he needs not trouble their Lordships with Circumstances, or long Discourses; but, these Words, to the best of his Remembrance, according to his Oath, he conceives were said to the King upon the Dissolving of the Parliament, at the Council-Table; That the Parliament in denying to supply the King, had given Him Advantage to supply Himself by other Ways. But, he will not tye himself so particularly to the Words, but, at the Time when he was Examined before the Gentlemen of the Committee, he added, or Words, to this Effect.
Mr. Whitlock then proceeded to the latter Words of the 23d Article, which shew, in full and plain Terms, what my Lord of Strafford's. Design was, and what he would have laboured, and endeavour'd His Majesty to entertain.
To the 7th Interrogatory, he faith, That the Earl of Strafford said, That in Case of Necessity, and for the Defence and Safety of the Kingdom, if the People do refuse to supply the King, the King is Absolved from Rules of Government: And, that every Thing is to be done for the Preservation of the King and His People; And, that His Majesty was acquitted before God and Man; And he faith, That the said Words were spoken at the Committee for Scotch Affairs, in the Presence of His Majesty; and, for the Time of speaking these Words, he doth not perfectly remember. He saith, That these were the Discourses mentioned in his Answer to the third Interrogatory, which made him believe what he hath answered to the said third Interrogatory.
To the Third and Fourth, he faith, That the Forces which were to come out of Ireland, were to land in the West Part of Scotland; but he doth not know, nor hath heard (to his Remembrance) that these Forces, or any other, were to be imployed in this Kingdom, to Compel, or Awe the Subjects of this Realm, to yield to such Taxes and Charges, as should be imposed on them by His Majesty. He faith, That he hath heard my Lord-Lieutenant make some Discourses to the King, whereby he believes, that in Case the King were not supply'd by Parliament, that some Course was intended to raise Money by Extraordinary Ways.
Sir Henry Vane being Interrogated, What Words he heard my Lord of Strafford speak to the King, before the Parliament, or after the Dissolution of it, tending to this; That the King had tried the Affections of His People, and was Loose and Absolved from all Rules of Government: And on what Occasion?
He Answered, That to the General Question, of what was spoken before, or after the Sitting of the Parliament, he doth not remember: And there are no particular Words asked him. But, to these Words, which have been read, he shall, as near as he can, ingenuously deliver, what he did formerly depose; ever reserving to himself Words to the same Effect. That he considers very well where he is, and the Presence before whom he speaks; That he hath never, in the whole Course of his Life loved to tell an Untruth, much less in this Honourable Assembly. That he shall, as near as he can, in this Case, tell their Lordships plainly and truly the Matter. It is true, (as my Lord Admiral hath declared to their Lordships) that these Words he is to testifie, were spoken at the Committee of Eight for the Scotch Affairs: For the Time, he shall crave Pardon, if he cannot particularly speak to it: But, thus far he shall say, It was clearly after the Dissolution of the last Parliament; It is true, and if he do not very much mistake, it was when the Debate, Whether a Defensive or an Offensive War, was Controverted; And, to the best that he can remember, and clearly, as he conceives, there were Words spoken; either these he shall now relate, or to the same Effect, by my Lord of Strafford, who is now at the Bar. The Occasion being, Whether an Offensive or Defensive War? and Arguments were Controverted in it. My Lord of Strafford did say, in a Discourse (for he must be ingenuous, he must say all he hath deposed, or is required) Your Majesty having tryed all Ways, and being refused; and, in Case of this extream Necessity, and for. the Safety of the Kingdom, You are acquitted before God and Men: You have an Army in England, which You may Imploy here to Reduce this Kingdom, or some Words to this Effect: And, Sir Henry Vane added, That he desires to speak clearly to it; It is true, My Lord of Strafford said these Words, You may. But, by that, he (the Examinant) cannot say it was intended, but that the Words were spoken; and, if it were the last Hour he is to speak, it is the Truth to his best Remembrance.
Being asked (on the several Motions of my Lord of Clare, and my Lord Savil) Whether, by this Kingdom, he meant the Kingdom of England, or Scotland? and, Whether it was meant, That he might imploy the Army in England, or in Ireland, because he said, The Army might be there imployed?
He Answered, That he shall, as near as he can: And, because he would have Truth appear, he shall desire, That if in this Case, any Word fall, which may be uncouth in the Sense, they would resort to his Examinations, for there it remains under his Hand and Oath.
But to his best Remembrance, he thinks, neither then, nor there were used; But, Your Majesty hath an Army in Ireland, You may Imploy to reduce this Kingdom: But, far be it from him (the Examinant) to interpret them. He tells their Lordships the Words, and no other.
He Answered, That he shall plainly and clearly do it; These Words were spoken (as my Lord of Northumberland hath testified) at the Committee of Eight, for the Scotch Affairs; It was on Occasion of a Debate, Whether an Offensive, or a Defensive War with the Kingdom of Scotland? That, on some Debate then, some being of Opinion for a Defensive, and some for an Offensive War; he did say the Words related, as he conceives. That in a Discourse, the Earl of Strafford said these Words, or Words to this Effect; Your Majesty having tryed all Ways, and refused; in this Case of extream Necessity, and for the Safety of Your Kingdom and People, You are loose and absolved from all Rules of Government; You are acquitted before God and Men; You have an Army in Ireland; You may imploy it to reduce this Kingdom.
And to his best Remembrance, at first it was agitated, to press the Offensive War; for, there were divers Reasons given, as the Kingdom stood then, that there should be no Offensive War; and, he must speak clearly and plainly, he (the Examinant) did move for a Defensive War: For, the Subjects of England, how they stood affected to this War, they knew; and besides a Breach of the Parliament, he thought it would but induce an ill Effect. On these Controversions the Words were spoken.
Here Mr. Whitlock observed, That these Words were spoken in England, on this Occasion, Of the King's trying His People, &c. which cannot be intended any other Place than England, where the Parliament was broken, and where the King had try'd His People.
And, so Mr. Whitlock said, They should conclude their Evidence, conceiving the last Words spoken, to be very fully proved; and, by Connexion with those other Words proved before, he thinks it is very clear and manifest, That my Lord of Strafford had a very strong Design and Endeavour, to subvert and change the Fundamental Laws and Government of England, and to bring in an Army upon us, to force this Kingdom to submit to an Arbitrary Power. That he shall not trouble their Lordships with Repetition of Words, nor with the Application of them, for indeed they be above Application; and to aggravate them, were to allay them; they have in themselves more Bitterness and Horror, than he is able to express: And so he left them to their Lordships Consideration and Application, expecting my Lord of Strafford's Answer to them:
Only he desired their Lordships, in one Point, to hear what Mr. Treasurer can say further, concerning the Breach of the last Parliament, and what Words and Messages he heard of, during the Sitting of that Parliament, procured by my Lord of Strafford; unless their Lordships will reserve that, till the rest of the Witnesses come to Morrow Morning, and then they shall be ready to produce all relating to that Point together.
My Lord of Strafford did hereupon crave of their Lordships Leave to recollect his Notes, being (as he said) a little Distracted, how to give Answer to these Things; for, divers Articles are mingled together, which will make his Answer not so clear as otherwise he had hoped to have made it, but he trusts he shall do it still.
He desires Leave to Answer Article by Article: And, how much Horror soever this Gentleman is pleased to say there is in these Words, he trusts before he goes out of the Room, to make it appear, That though there may be Error of Judgment, yet nothing that may give Offence, when the Antecedents and Consequents are brought together: And, that he shall give such an Account, that (whether their Lordships will clear him, as to the Charge of an Indiscreet Man, he knows not) but, as for Treason to the King, and His People, he shall give clear Satisfaction, that no much thing was spoken or intended.
To which, my Lord of Strafford Answered, That, in truth, they make much more of it than he did; for, he trusts, by the Blessing of Almighty God, to give the Answer of an honest Man to all Objections, he will not say of a discreet Man; and once for all, he humbly besought their Lordships (and so he knows in their Wisdom and Judgment they will) to look what is proved, and not to what is enforced on those Proofs from these Gentlemen: For Words pass, and may be easily mistaken; but their Lordships having regard only to what is Deposed, and that they were to guide themselves by that.
That it will be very hard for him to know, in what Order to Answer all the Matters objected against him; But, the best Course he can take for his own Direction (and he trusts it shall, not be displeasing to their Lordships) will be, to go over the Articles as they lie in order, and under every Article to give his own Proof, and to repeat all the Proofs press'd against him for that Article.
The other Day, an End was made of the 19th Article, but then likewise the 20th was entred into; so, the middle-part of that Charge is answered already touching Words by him spoken at his last being in Ireland; and, to that he shall not need farther to Answer.
But, here is in it, That he did labour to Persuade, Incite, and Provoke to an Offensive War against the said Subjects of the Scotch Nation; and, to have been, by his Counsels, Actions, and Endeavours, a Principal Incendiary.
To prove this, they have offered first my Lord Traquair's Depositions; and, he craved leave to represent to their Lordships, How he conceived his Testimony was delivered (viz.) That, upon a Relation of his (the Lord Traquair) made at the Council-Board, he gave his Opinion as other their Lordships did; and, that it was condescended to by the Council-Board, That if the Commissioners of Scotland gave not Satisfaction, that then the King might put himself in a Posture of War; so that he gave only an Opinion as others did.
And that is proved (as he conceives) by my Lord Traquair; who, among other Parts of his Testimony recited, says, That there was no Difference in the main amongst the Votes: So that by both the Testimonies, it plainly appears, that his Opinion was no other than the Opinion of the rest: And, certainly, as that Opinion can never be charged on any of the rest of the Lords, in any kind whatsoever; so he trusts it shall never be charged upon him: For, he thinks, he is in great Safety and Security, when he hath the Concurrence of so many wiser Persons than himself, in the Opinion he then deliver'd, and that is, for so much as was spoken at the Council-Board; And if it were needful (as he conceives it is not) to examine the Persons that were there, it should appear he delivered no Vote at all at that Time, but the Vote of the Board: Put, it is clear in their own Proofs, and their Lordships will (he hopes) justify him in their Judgments, when it comes to Sentence.
The next Thing is the Deposition of my Lord Morton, concerning something spoken at York, at a Council there called; he met before the Assembly of the Great Council of the Peers, where he conceives, and, as he remembers, he (the Earl of Strafford) spake something to this Sense; That the unreasonable Demands of Subjects in Parliament, was a Ground for the King to put Himself into a posture of War.
When this had been resolved by the Council of England, he conceives it no great Crime for him to say so: For, upon the Question put on those Demands, it was said, That it was fit for the King to put himself into a Posture of War, and into a Condition to reduce them by Force if they could not be brought by fair Means to do their Allegiance and Duty to the King.
This he (my Lord of Strafford) conceives under Favour, is but a single Testimony; And my Lord Morton gives himself the Answer; for he says the Reasons were not related when he was present, and therefore, in that my Lord of Strafford conceives there is little Matter.
My Lord Traquair says one Thing more, and that is, That the Reasons were left to be alledged by the Scotch Commissioners: It is true, they were so; And my Lord Morton says, That he (the Defendant) should say, It was not Matter of Religion that was the Business, but they struck at the Root of Government, and were to be punished by Force.
But he said, He should speak further of these Things anon, when he should represent, what Words are in respect of Deeds, and what Difference there is between what a Man says and does, in Case of Treason.
But under Favour, these two last are no Part of his Charge, though he answers them; for he is not charged with speaking any Thing to the King at York, the Night before the Great Council, but only with speaking at the Council-Board on my Lord Traquair's Relation; and this he conceives is all they bring against him, to convince him of the 20th Article saving only the Testimony of my Lord of Northumberland and of Mr. Treasurer; and Mr. Treasurer says, That it being agitated, Whether a Defensive or an Offensive War were to be undertaken? he was for a Defensive, and my Lord of Strafford for an Offensive War.
He (the Deponent) cannot conceive, how this can conduce to make a Treason; If the War was resolved on, the Debate, Whether an Offensive or Defensive, shall not be treasonable: Admit it to be as Mr. Treasurer says, Mr. Treasurer, alledged his Reason; and he (the Earl of Strafford) alledged his; and God forbid it should be Treason in one, or the other, they both doing their Duties, and delivering their Consciences according to their Oaths; It was resolved as fit to reduce them; and whether by an Offensive or Defensive War, being a free Council, they were bound to deliver their Judgments to a Master, that was so Wise as to know what was best for his Service, and so to dispose as he should think fit.
My Lord of Northumberland says, That he (the Earl of Strafford) advised to go on vigorously in an Offensive War: Admit he did say so; it is not Treason, it was a free Debate; many Reasons were given, and for him to give his Reasons one Way, was as free from Crime or Offence, as for them to give their Reasons another Way.
They say, That (as a chief Incendiary of the Troubles between His Majesty and the Scotch) he seized divers Scotch Ships when he was in Ireland, and for this they have only Mr. Barnwell's Testimony; and all he says, is, That Sir Robert Loftus told him, He had a Warrant to seize the Ships, and they did seize them accordingly; but by whole Warrant he doth not know.
Sir Robert Loftus was the Vice-Admiral of the Province of Lemster, himself was Vice-Admiral of the Province of Munster; and about that Time the Lord Admiral sent Direction and Command to the Vice-Admiral of Lemster and Munster, to seize all the Scotch Ships then in those Ports; so that what was done, was done by the Authority of my Lord Admiral; and if their Lordships asked Mr. Slingsby, he will say, That about that Time there came these Commands, and by Virtue thereof these Ships were stayed.
He Answered, That he received the Letters, just as my Lord was going into England, and dispersed them to the Vice-Admirals, he executed that for Munster, as Deputy to my Lord, and the Ships were stayed after my Lord's going into England, and not before.
Whence my Lord of Strafford concluded, That it appeared, that he hath not been an extraordinary Stirrer of Difference between the King and the Subject, he never desiring any thing but Peace and Quietness, and that all Things might be ended (as he trusts they shall) with good Understanding and perpetuity of Affection amongst ourselves, and with them.
And there his Lordship left the 20th Article, hoping he had fully and clearly satisfied their Lordships, as to any Crime in it; but whether his Judgment did mislead him in an Opinion, he will not dispute, but will confess willingly, That no Man is more ready to mistake than himself.
The first Proof of the 21 Article, was, my Lord Primate's Examination, wherein he says, That in a Discourse betwixt them concerning the Levying of Money on the Subjects, in Case of imminent Necessity; his Opinion was, The King might use his Prerogative as he pleases; but first it was best to try his Parliament.
This is the only Testimony in this Particular; being Singularis Testis, he knows it will weigh with their Lordships accordingly; and then it is no otherwise, but by way of Discourse and Argument; and how far that shall be laid to a Man's Charge, he must submit, in regard of the Reasons subsequent in the next Article; so that he will reserve himself to this Point, till he comes thither. But the Words fairly and clearly understood, abide a Sense no way of Danger to him that speaks them; for they are, That the King may use His Prerogative as he pleases, and the King's Pleasure is always just, and will not use his Prerogative, but justly and fairly; and for a Man to think otherwise, were a high Offence.
Besides, many Things are lawful, which if they were done to the uttermost of the Power, that his Prerogative, and the Law of the Land gives him, might be prejudicial to his Subjects; which notwithstanding, he in his Goodness and Discharge of the Trust, God Almighty hath put into him, never hath, nor will exercise, but suffer them to be imployed for the Subjects Advantage, according to the present Occasion: And therefore to say, He may use his Prerogative as he pleases, might be without Prejudice to the Subject, and very lawful. But it is a greater Offence by much, to think that the King will use his Prerogative otherwise, than as befits a Christian and Pious King.
The next Proof offered, is my Lord Conway, and he says, On some Discourse (which being private between Friend and Friend, neither of them thought they should come here to give an Account of) my Lord Conway asked him, Where the Means should be for the Supply of the King's Army? He told him, in Parliament, and doubted not but the Parliament would supply His Majesty, so far he was from thinking there should be that Misfortune, as the Breach of that Parliament, but quite contrary.
And for the Words, That if the King should be denied in just and lawful Things, he might justifie before God and Men, the Seeking Means to help himself, though it were against their Will. He must needs say, That to help a Man's self, is a very natural Motion, for commonly a Man's self is the last Creature that leaves him, and that which is natural to every Man, is natural to the King, who is accountable, not only for himself, but also for all his People.
The next is Mr. Treasurer, and he says, That the 5th of December Was Twelvemonths, to the best of his Remembrance, upon a Proposition of a Parliament to the King, he (the Earl of Strafford) should say, That if the Parliament should not succeed, he would be ready to assist His Majesty any other Way. He sees not where the heinousness of the Words lies, nor where the Venom is that should endanger him as to his Life and Honour; and, if he said, He would assist His Majesty any other Way, if it were needful, or any way conducing to his Purpose, he is verily persuaded, Mr. Treasurer himself said as much; but that is not material, for he conceives it not blameable in either of them to have said so much; therefore he lays it not on him as a Recrimination. For the Question was, A Parliament; or no Parliament? A Parliament was the Desire of every Man to settle the Common-wealth by, that they might stare super vias antiquas. And when they were moving His Majesty for a Parliament, for him to say, he would help any other Way, doth always presuppose, what must be presupposed, that it must be in all lawful Ways: The King cannot command unlawful Ways; and he hath that Opinion of His Majesty, and of His Truth and Faithfulness, that He will not command him any Ways, but lawful Ways, he having not carry'd himself in his Master's Service so, as that he can have an Opinion of him, that he will do any thing, but what is honourable and just, and therefore he hopes it is spoken without Offence, being fairly and rightly understood, That is, of lawful Ways, the Ways the King could command, and the Ways himself could serve him in, being no other. And this is all they bring to prove that Part of the 21 Article, that concerns his procuring of His Majesty to break the Parliament, and by Force and Power to raise Money on the Subjects: And this is all, he says, and all they charge out of that Article.
This he must add, That when he says, he will serve the King in any other Ways; in all Debates whensoever he express'd himself to that Purpose, he did ever in the Conclusion end with this, That there was no safe nor sure Expedient, to settle a right Understanding between the King and His people, and to make both Happy, but Parliaments; as shall appear clearly and plainly by that time he hath given his Proofs. and so it will appear, he meant only lawful Ways.
For that if their Lordships please to give him leave, he thinks the Thing itself will best shew itself; and therefore he desired the Remonstrance of the Two Houses of Parliament in Ireland might be read.
The Declaration of the Commons House there, Importing; Whereas they have with one Consent, clearly given to His Majesty, Four entire Subsidies towards His present Preparations, to reduce His disaffected Subjects, the Covenanteers in Scotland, to their due Obedience; They itself hope that His Majesty's great Wisdom, and unexampled Clemency, may yet prevail with the worse affected of those His Subject, to bring them to that Conformity and Submission, which by the Laws of God and Nature they owe to Him: But if His Majesty shall be enforced to use His Power, to vindicate His just Authority: This House for themselves, and the Commons of this Kingdom, do profess, That their Zeal and Duty shall not stop here at these Four Subsidies, but humbly promise, That they will be ready with their Persons and Estates, to their uttermost Ability for His Majesty's future Supply in Parliament, as His great Occasions, by the Continuance of His Forces against that Distemper shall require. This they pray, That it may be represented to His Majesty by the Lord Lieutenant, and recorded as an Ordinance of Parliament, and published in Print as a Testimony to all the World and succeeding Ages, That as this Kingdom hath the Happiness to be governed by the best of Kings, so they desire to give Cause, That He shall account this People amongst the best of His Subjects.
Upon which my Lord of Strafford said, That if he had procured this Declaration, it had been no Crime, considering what preceded in the King's Council there. But he says, he hath no Part in it, it was done with the greatest Freedom and Chearfulness that ever he did, or shall see a Thing of that Nature done: It must be ascribed to that Nation, and the Zeal, Affection, and Chearfulness, by which they discovered themselves to the King's Service, to which there was no need to invite them. But if he had had a part in it, he might have justified it, considering what precedent Instructions he had from the King, which he could shew, but that he is loth to take up their Lordships Time.
The next Thing he is charged withal is, for Confederating with Sir George Ratcliffe, and together with him, traiterously Conspiring to imploy the Army raised in Ireland, for the Ruin and Destruction of the Kingdom of England, and of His Majesty's Subjects; and subverting the Fundamental Laws of this Kingdom.
To which he faith, That truly if it be made appear, that he had so much as any such Thought in his Breast, he should easily give Judgment against himself, as not worthy to live. If he should confederate to the Destruction of the Country that bore him, and consequently to the making of himself and his Posterity little else than Vassals, who were born a free People, by the Goodness of Almighty God, and under the Protection and Justice of the King, and particularly of His Majesty.
That he hath a Heart that loves Freedom as well as another Man, and values it as highly, and in d modest and dutiful Way, will go as far to defend it: And therefore certainly he is not altogether so probably to be thought a Person that would go against; Nay, he thinks that Man doth the King the best Service, that stands for the modest Propriety and Liberty of the Subject. It hath been once his Opinion, which he learnt in the Honourable House of Commons, when he had the Honor to sit there; it hath gone along with him in the whole Course of his Service to the Common-wealth, and by the Grace of God, he shall carry it to his Grave; That the Prerogative of the Crown, and Liberty of the Subject, should be equally look'd upon, and serv'd together, but not apart.
The Proof they offer for this, is a strange manner of Proof; For First they prove by Sir Robert King, what Sir George Ratcliffe said; they will not admit the Examination of Sir George Ratcliffe, but here is a Report Upon a Report; And what says this Gentleman? He tells of some Time Sir George Ratcliffe said, which was not concerning him (the Defendant) and was impertinent for him to repeat. But the Deponent says in the Conclusion, That as he understood them, there was some Danger towards, &c.
Then comes my Lord Ranalaugh, and reports the Words of Sir George Ratcliffe, and in Conclusion says, That by some Things he did gather, he had fears there might be some Intendment, to employ that Army in Ireland, of some other Place; but he (the Defendant) offers to their Lordships, That what Sir George Ratcliffe said, was nothing to him, and so could not charge him with it. The meanest Subject in the Kingdom cannot commit Treason by Letter of Attorney; and it is a Priviledge which, though he hath the Honour to be a Peer, he shall never desire that a Peer may do it by Proxy: Sir George Ratcliffe cannot speak, nor procure Treason for him; and being Sir George Ratcliffe's Words, they cannot be his (the Earl of Strafford's) Offence; and he hopes Sir George will answer them, as an honest Gentleman, and a Privy-Counsellor to the King, which he hath the Honour to be in Ireland. And how Sir Robert King understood them, is as little, if not less to him (the Defendant) Sir Robert's understanding of a Thing can make no Crime to him (my Lord of Strafford,) And for my Lord Ranalaugh's Fears, he may take them back again, for it will be shew'd they were groundless Fears, viz. That this Army was intended for English Ground: For him to imagine, that because My Lord of Strafford said, It was like to be a troublesome World, and that he was willing to fell his Land, therefore this Army should come into England; These be Non fequiturs, and Fancies of his own, and there was no Colour for such Fears in his Lordship.
Besides, my Lord Ranalaugh was not acquainted with the Design, and therefore he might easily Mistake, but others were acquainted with it, in such manner, as is expressed in his Answer, and which (my Lord said) he shall now declare, viz.
That there was no Intention or Purpose of bringing this Irish Army into England; And whereas to the Design he hath express'd in his Answer, of having two Honourable Persons to be made Privy, and divers others to his Papers, he Humbly besought their Lordships to favour him so far, as to suffer him to ask a Question of three or four Persons he shall produce, professing that there was never a Thought in any Mans Heart that he knew, nor never a Word in any Mans Mouth, that ever he heard, that any Part of the Army should ever touch a Foot on English Ground, as some of their Lordships, and His Majesty knows (where his Lordship added) If he may with Reverence Name His Majesty in that poor and distressed Condition, wherein himself is; for he is not worthy of his Protection, being in this miserable Case, and therefore it was too much Boldness for him, to name him; But his Lordship desired the Benefit of reading my Lord of Northumberland's Examination, to the Point of that Design,
To the First Interrogatory he faith, That he hath often heard both His Majesty, and the Earl of Strafford mention the 8000 Foot, which were to be rais'd in Ireland; but to his best Remembrance, he never heard any Intention, of bringing the said 8000 Foot, or any Part thereof into England; That the Design of landing them on the West of Scotland, was often spoke of, and so resolved, as he believes.
The Lord Marq. Hamilton being Sworn and Interrogated, what he knew or believed, concerning the raising of 8000 Foot in Ireland, or whether he was privy to any Intention of bringing the same, or any Part of them into England?.
His Lordship Answered, It is late, and Time is precious to their Lordships and so he shall answer as shortly as he can unto that Question. It is very true, His Majesty was Graciously pleased to acquaint him with the Resolution of raising that Army of 8000 Foot; And it is true, that the Resolution was, That these Men should Land in the West of Scotland, about a certain Town, called Ayre, or where my Lord should find it most convenient. And for any Thing he (the Examinant) knows, there was no other Design, he never heard of any, nor did he hear of the bringing of them into England, for any such Use and End, or that they were ever to come to England at all.
Sir Tho. Lucas, Sergeant-Major General of the Horse of the King's Army in Ireland, who (as my Lord of Strafford said) being with him here in Candlemas- Term was 12 Months, in his own Lodging at Covent-Garden, something passed between them, concerning the disposing of the 8000 Foot, and 100 Horse, to what Purpose they were raised.
He Answered, That about the latter end of January 1639. my Lord of Strafford told him, an Army was to be raised in Ireland, another in England, and with the English Army a Regiment of Horse, whereof his (the Examinants) Troop should be one, and some Regiments of Foot, and these Foot and Horse were to joyn with the Irish Army; and that my Lord taking a Map of Scotland (which lay then in the Chamber) said, Now I must tell you the greatest Secret in all the World, and pointed with his Finger towards that Part of Scotland, which lies on the Dunbar-Frith: And said, The Irish Army is to land here, and here I intend to take a Town (but he did not nominate the Town) and added, That he might the more easily do it, because the Scots would not expect his Landing there, but it is likely, will imagine the Landing of the Irish Army at Carlisle, or some other Part of England. And his Lordship said further, That when he had taken this, he would strongly fortifie it, intending it for a Magazine of Ammunition and Victuals for the Irish Army, and so he should bring all the Country about to Contribution, even to Edenburgh, and when he is Landed, he (the Examinant) should have Notice, and should joyn with the Irish Army; and that he would send these Horse, my Lord spake to him the Examinant, about 1000, (as he thinks) to convey him the Examinant to him.
My Lord of Strafford added, That the Truth is, there were Foot-Regiments of Sir Tho. Wharton's, and Sir Arthur Tyrringham's, and Sir Tho. Lucas's, Regiment of 500 Horse; that (when the Irish were Landed in Scotland) were to be fetcht by Ships from St. Rees, and so to have joyned with the others. And it was supposed, 500 would have found no great Difficulty on a suddain for such a March, and Sir Tho. Wharton, and Sir Arthur Tyrringham came over purposely, to have persued his Design; by which it appears, there was no Design to bring them to England; and so a strange Philosophy it was to bring it into any Mans Thoughts, it should be so.
He Answered, That he had the Honor to be sworn of the Council of War, and then the Charge of making the whole Magazine of Ammunition and Provision for that Army, was conferred on him, That he repaired to England 10 Days after my Lord, and persued his received Instructions, for making Preparations of Artillery and Ammunition directed, which he got all shipp'd and ready about July; that the flow Proceedings of the Irish Army did then retard his Directions from my Lord-Lieutenant, for the Dispath away of those Ships which were ready.
That my Lord was pleased to tell him, He must provide some Stores for a Magazine for Maintenance of the Soldiers; that he was pleased to impart to him, That the Army was to land in Scotland about Aire; That he thereupon proceeded to get a Map drawn of that Coast, and informed himself by that Map, and discoursed with Scotchmen in Town; That Aire was a barred Harbor, and that divers Ordnance were mounted to intercept the Landing, which he representing to my Lord-Lieutenant, my Lord directed him to take Consideration of the Burdens of the Ships, and whether they could be brought to ride near the Town, and that there might be Provision of Flat-bottom'd Boats to Land a good Number at once; That he had a Warrant to receive 10 of the King's Flat-bottom'd Boats, and 20 were provided by my Lord of Antrim the last Year with Oars, and a floating Battery to secure the Landing of the Men; That he had Direction to obtain Warrants from my Lord of Newport for 10, 16, or 20 Pieces of Ordnance, That at first he had 10, afterwards 6 more Iron Pieces for Fortification which (as my Lord of Strafford had imparted to him the Examinant)were to fortify the Place after Landing at Aire, and were Ship'd and sent away, but the Ships were not sent a good while after, by reason of the flow Proceedings of the Army.
Being asked, Whether he had not Commission and Instructions from my Lord of Strafford to discharge some Ships for the lessening of the King's Charge, and to take only so many, as might be fit for the Service?
He Answered, That he received that Command from my Lord-Lieutenant, to discharge most of the Ships, and none went about but them that were laden with Ammunition, and he received Direction to take as few Ships as he could, to prevent Charge to His Majesty, and discharged some 10 or 14 Flemish Ships that were fraighted.
This my Lord of Strafford said, he offers, because he would not have it stick with any Man, That in the Things concerning the King's Service, Necessaries were not ready at the Time; therefore he would not have any thing asperse him; for the King never commanded him any thing, but (according to what he understood,) he did it faithfully, and never any Thing miscarry'd.
He Answered, He did ask such a Question, and remembers it (and may be, more particularly than my Lord doth) That he was newly come from his Quarter, and my Lord told him, That some of their Lordships were come with a Petition to the King, and, among other Things, petitioned, That the Irish Army should not come over, and wondered, their Lordships should Petition for that; for certainly, he should know that Particular as much as their Lordships; and protested before God, they were never intended to set Foot on English Ground: That he (Sir William Pennyman) reply'd again, Certainly a great many more were in a great deal of Darkness and Error; for, he had asked Sir Robert Farrar the Reason the Irish Army did not come over, it being the Conjecture of a great many they should Land at Workington; and his Lordship protested again, That he never knew they were to set Foot on English Ground.
He (the Defendant) confesseth, he said, The Army was to come to Workington, and joyn with the King's Forces at Barwick; for, he had no Reason to prepare the Scots before hand, but to disguise the Business, tho' he never thought nor heard of any Purpose under Heaven, that any of them should come on English Ground: And added, That he did not rest here, but acquainted my Lord of Ormond, the Lieutenant General of that Army, my Lord President of Munster, my Lord Justice Burlace, (who now is General of the Artillery) that the Army was to be sent for Knockfergus, the Northerly Part of Ireland, and the Business to be for Scotland, not for England: And, the sending of all the Stores to the uttermost Confines, shews plainly and demonstratively, that the Design wrought there, howsoever it was pretended in another Place.
The next Thing brought into his Charge, is from the Mouth of his own Brother; and, it is narrowly sought after, even in his innermost Friends, his Brother, his Table, his House, his Bed, inevery Place, for something to Convince him of that, which he thanks God he was never guilty of.
It is from a Testimony of Sir Tho. Barrington, who tells what passed between Sir Thomas and his Brother. But, in Answer thereunto, he offers, That what his Brother says is nothing to him: His Brother is a. young Gentleman; and, in Things concerning the King's Service, and where there lies the Obligation of an Oath, his Brother knows no more from him, than a mere Stranger, nor shall, though he knows him well: And therefore he hopes this cannot convince him, when the whole Course of his Actions goes another Way.
But, thus much he must say for his Brother, before he be Examined, That when it was first opened in the Parliament House, That one near to him in Blood should say, England would be never well till it be Conquered again; he could not imagine who in the World it should be; and besought their Lordships, That, since he now comes to know it, his Brother may be asked, Whether he knows any thing of it?
Sir George Wentworth being to speak as to the said Discourse, Mr. Maynard opposed this Proceeding, as tending to the clearing of himself; supposing, that if they had examined him, whether he had spoken the Words or no, their Lordships would not have suffered him to be examined to charge himself; and their Lordships Judgments were humbly demanded, whether if he be not to be examined on one side he should be examined on the other? But Sir George Wentworth desiring to be heard for his own Justification, Mr. Maynard further offered, That being for his own Justification, he could not (under Favour of their Lordships) be heard.
My Lord of Strafford offering to their Lordships, That it is easy to mistake Words, that pass betwixt Man and Man, in ordinary and familiar Discourse; and, that Memories that can remember Things so long since, he protested are quicker and fresher then ever his was.
And so my Lord of Strafford concluded that Part of the Charge, which concerned his Conspiring with Sir George Ratcliffe, to bring over the Irish Army to the prejudice of England; thinking, as he said, that he had clearly and evidently demonstrated it to be a Truth, that will not be denied him, that the Intendment was for no such purpose, and consequently there was no such Conspiracy to any such Intent: And therefore left it to their Lordships further, and wiser, and nobler Considerations.
The next Thing, is the Words Charged to have been spoken after his Return into England, to sundry Persons, declaring his Opinion, That His Majesty should first try the Parliament here, and, if they did not supply Him according to His present Exigency, He might use His Pererogative as He pleas'd, and to levy what He needed.
This he hath Answer'd already, and shall not need to repeat: But, he finds some Things in the Proofs, which, whether they mean to make use of, to prove any of the Words he knows not: And therefore he desired to touch on them a little.
The first Proof hereof, Is the Testimony of Mr. Comptroller, that he, the (Earl of Strafford) should say something of deserting the King, but he remembers not the Particulars: In which Words he conceives there is nothing that can make him Criminal before, their Lordships,
The next is, of what my Lord of Bristol says; Whose Discourse came in upon some Difference between the Tenants of his Lordship, (the Earl of Bristol) and his (the said Earl of Strafford) The Discourse he remembers very well, my Lord of Bristol honouring him with a Visit when he was sick; and, he remembers, something was spoken to that Effect and Purpose, as it is in the Testimony. But, What is this as to the Charge laid against him? In the Charge, there are only such Words that may prejudice him, but nothing that may forfeit his Life, Estate, and Honour. As in the Case of extream and unavoidable Necessity, viz. The Invasion of a Foreign Enemy, when there is not Time to call a Parliament. And, the King may in that Case use, as the Common Parent of the Country, what Power God Almighty hath given Him, for preserving Himself, and His People, for whom He is accountable to Almighty God, is a Thing quite different, from what is in an ordinary Case. He confesses, his Opinion is, the King has a Power absolutely to use all possible means for the Safety of the Publick. In these Cases he hath a Power given Him by God Almighty, that cannot be taken from Him by others; neither, under Favour, is he able to take it from Himself. If this be a fond and foolish Opinion, he craves their Lordships pardon; but, he thinks, a Man should not forfeit his Life and Honor, and Posterity, for a foolish Opinion; God forbid that Common-Law, or Statute-Law, should make that Treason in any Man.
My Lord of Bristol's Testimony says further. But my Lord of Strafford then said, The King was not to be Mastered by the Frowardness or Wilfulness of His People, or rather by the Disaffection of some particular Men.
To which Words, he says, If he did remember them, he Would acknowledge them: But, being then in that Condition, delivered from a great and long Sickness, Infirm and Weak, both in the Powers of his Mind, and Faculties of his Body, if he be not able to recollect every Thing, it is no marvel: But, he relies so much on the Honour and Nobleness of my Lord of Bristol, that seeing he says that he said it, he will not deny it, though he cannot remember it. But he must say withal, That his Testimony cannot work any Thing towards him further, then a single Testimony can do in this Case: And therefore, without Offence, he shall desire, in this Particular, to reserve this Benefit to himself, that the Law in this Case gives him, in such Sort, as hereafter he shall be bold to put their Lordships in mind of, that is, how far a single Testimony may work to the prejudice of a Man, charged with High-Treason.
The next Testimony is my Lord of Newburgh; That he heard me (the Defendant) say, or Words to this Effect, That seeing the Parliament had not supplied the King, His Majesty might take other Courses for the Defence of the Kingdom.
These Words I do (said the Defendant) acknowledge: And he trusts there is no Offence in this Saying; for I conceive, that the King is not secluded, nor any one else, in a fair, and just, and an honourable Way, from doing the best for himself, and his own Preservation; but those other Courses that were intended, were just and lawful Courses; He must put that Grain of Salt into all the rest of his Discourse; that it was meant of no other Ways or Means, but such as were allowed by the Laws of the Land, and, were fit for a gracious and pious King to use: And so understood, he knows no Reason, but the King should be left to supply Himself, in all the fair and just Ways he can, if the Parliament should not supply Him.
The next Testimony is my Lord of Holland's and his Lordship says, That at Council-Table my Lord of Strafford should say, That the Parliament having deny'd the King, gave Him an Advantage to supply Himself otherways.
But, he says still, other lawful Ways; It gave Him Advantage to use His Prerogative in lawful Ways, further then otherwise perhaps out of his Goodness, He would have done: Therefore, giving those Words that Interpretation, he conceives they cannot be laid to him as a Charge of High-Treason.
The next is the Testimony of my Lord of Northumberland, who says, my Lord of Strafford said, that in Case of Necessity, and for Defence and Safety of the Kingdom; if the People refuse, the King might do every Thing for the Preservation of His People.
This brings it much to the other Business before spoken of, it being in Case of Necessity, for the Defence and Safety of the Kingdom, and to be used for Preservation of the People; for, he must needs say, That in his Opinion, grounded upon that Maxim, Salus Popali Suprema Lex; In these Things when ordinary Forms cannot be had (for when they may be had, to go to extraordinary, is not right) but, when the ordinary Ways fail, and the Occasion gives no Time, God forbid, but the King should employ the uttermost of His Power, Wisdom, and Courage, for Preservation of Himself and His People; And, to say it with Limitation, under Favour, doth state the Question quite otherways, then if the Words were taken alone, and not put together. But, that with these Limitations he spake, both these Things, and diverse others, will more fully and clearly appear in the next succeeding Article: For, here he is charged with speaking Things at large; but there at the Council-Board, and there it will come in properly.
At which Time he shall desire to examine some of their Lordships, and, it shall appear, Words of this Nature went always in this. Sort from him, in Case of a Foreign Invasion, in Case of an Enemy actually entred, or to be entred, and not otherwise; which makes it another Question, then as by the Antecedents and Consequents it is laid in the Charge.
Besides, this Offence is, but Words spoken by way of Argument, in common Discourse between Man and Man, without any further, or other Proceeding, or Execution upon these Words:' And shall these be brought against a Man, and charged on him as High-Treason? God forbid, that we should ever live to see such an Example in this Kingdom: A Matter of infinite Prejudice and Danger to every Man; for, when that is done, no Man can be safe.
Is there any thing more ordinary, than for Men in Discourse, to seem to be of a contrary Opinion to what they are, to invite another Man to give Reasons, perhaps to confirm him in his own Opinion, though he seems to argue against it?
Is any thing more familiar, than for a Man to seem to be of an Opinion, to gain a Reason to confirm that Opinion which he is of, and contrary to that he seems to defend, by this means to get the Strength of other Mens Reasons to confirm his own by?
Again, Is any thing more familiar in private Discourse, between Man and Man, than when one is so far on that side the Line. for the other to go as far himself, that he may meet the first Man in the midst? If a Man meet with one that is as far below, as himself is above, and shall seem to maintain further, than his Reason and Belief carries him, to bring the other to Moderation, Shall this be charged on him as a Treason?
If Words spoken to Friends, in familiar Discourse, spoken in one's Chamber, spoken at one's Table, spoken in one's Sick-Bed, spoken, perhaps, to gain better Reason, to give himself more clear Light and Judgment, by Reasoning: If these Things shall be brought against a Man, as Treason; this, under favour, takes away the Comfort of all humane Society: By this Means we shall be debarred of Speaking (the principal Joy and Comfort of Society) with wise and good Men, to become wiser and better our Lives. If these Things be strained to take away Life, and Honour, and all that is desirable, it will be a silent World; a City will become an Hermitage, and Sheep will be found amongst a Crowd and Press of People; and, no Man shall dare to impart his solitary Thoughts, or Opinion, to his Friend or Neighbour, but thereby be debarred from consulting with wiser Men than himself, whereby he may understand the Law, wherewith he ought to be governed.
But, these be but Words all the while; and, if he shall shew, that Words of a higher Nature, shall, by the Judgment of an English Parliament, be thought to not be Treason; Why should he think, or imagine, or fear, that their Lordships will make these indiscreet and idle Expressions of his, reach so high as his Head and take the Comfort of his Wife and Children from him.
Be it Enacted by the Authority aforesaid, if any Person or Persons, do compass, and imagine by open Preaching, express Words, or saying, to depose, or deprive the King, His Heirs, or Successors, from His, or their Royal Estate, or Title, or openly publish, or say, by express words, or saying, That any other Person, or persons other then the King, His Heirs or Successors, of right ought to be, &c.
These be words of higher nature, than those charged upon himself; and yet the first Offence is made but loss of Goods, and Imprisonment; for the second, loss of Lands and Goods, and Imprisonment; the third time is only made Treason.
The very Words are mentioned in 1 E. 6. When a Man doth compass, or imagine, by open Preaching, &c. to Depose the King. And the first Statute provides, That if a Man shall compass the Death of the King, and be not thereof attainted by open Deed, it is not Treason. And, the Statute of H. 4. and 1 Mar. concurr with this, and shew, That the Intent of these was to take away the danger the Subject might incurr, if bare Words should be brought against him as Treason.
And, it hath been the Wisdom of their Lordships noble Ancestors, and this State, that they have always endeavoured to conclude the danger that may fall on the Subject by Treason, that it might be limited and bounded, and that it might be so understood as to be avoided; and, he hopes, we shall never be so improvident, as to sharpen this two edged Sword against our selves, and the Faces of our Posterity, and to let the Lion loose to tear us all in pieces; for, if way be given to Arbitrary Treason, and to the Wits of Men, to work upon it, to prejudice or question Life, it would be very dangerous. And, he believes, That in this Hall there would be Actions of Treason that would fly as familiarly up and down, as Actions of Trespass: and therefore since by the Goodness of our King, and the Wisdom of our Ancestors, we have been thus provided for, why we should entangle our selves into the streights they could not endure, but endeavoured, by all means, to free themselves from the dangers that familiarly follow them, he cannot fee.
To the First Part of the 23d Article, concerning the last Parliament, the Gentlemen have reserved themselves till to morrow, and therefore he shall not need to speak to that, and so there will remain nothing for him to Answer, but the last part of the Act, with the next Charge, concerning words spoken at the Council-Board, or at the Committee for Scotch Affairs, viz. That His Majesty having tried the Affections of His People, He was loose and absolved from all Rules of Government, and was to do every thing that Power would admit; and, that His Majesty had tried all Ways, and was refused, and should be acquitted both before God and Man; and that he had an Army in Ireland, which he might employ to reduce this Kingdom to Obedience.
Concerning this particular, he says, he remembers not any thing, but what Mr. Treasurer is pleased to speak of: And, whereas Mr. Treasurer, as concerning that part, said, He loves to speak the truth; my Lord of Strafford said, He doubts not but he doth, for that we should all do, he is sure of it; But, Mr. Treasurer has reversed his Testimony, in saying, that he will not speak to the very Words themselves, but to these, or Words to the like effect; and, if he be not mistaken, and to the best of his remembrance, That, His Majesty having tryed all ways, and being refused, in this extream necessity, and, for the safety of the Kingdom, and People, He might do; &c. And, that Your Majesty hath an Army in Ireland, which You may employ (there, he said at first) And afterwards (which you may employ to this Kingdom.) And, he faith, he doth not interpret these Words, but gives the Words clearly and plainly, as my Lord of Northumberland had declared, and that it was soon after the Dissolution of the last Parliament, to his best remembrance, and at the Committee of 8; and, he thinks, my Lord spake them positively, or something to that effect.
Now, whereas he calls in to his aid my Lord of Northumberland, under favour, my Lord of Northumberland declared no such Words, but absolutely denies, in his Examination, that he ever heard my Lord of Strafford mention the reducing of England by an Irish Army: It is true, my Lord of Northumberland goes thus far, That he hath heard him say something, whereby he might conceive, there was intended some Course of raising Monies by extraordinary Ways.
And, that my Lord of Strafford confesses is very true, for, if it were by borrowing 3 or 400000 l. it is an extraordinary Way; the Kings Revenue could not serve these Occasions, there must be other Ways, and Loan was one, and that fair, and honourable, and just.
So then, as to this Testimony, the Defendant offers to their Lordships, that he hath examined my Lord of Northumberland, and he knows no such thing; He hath Examined my Lord Marquiss of Hamilton, and his Lordship is pleased to say, He remembers no such Thing at the Committee of 8.
He Answered, That he never heard my Lord speak those Words of the Irish Army, nor any Thing like it; and he repeated, That he never heard his Lordship speak it in the manner proposed, nor any Thing like it.
Lord Cottington being Asked (on my Lord of Straffords motion) Whether he heard my Lord of Strafford say such Words, That the King had an Army in Ireland, and he might employ them to reduce this Kingdom?
He Answered, That, as he takes it, he hath been Asked to that Question too; and, he thinks, he never heard the words, for it was (as he thinks) a very absurd Proposition, and he should not have heard it with patience.
He Answered, That for saying, the Parliament had not provided for the King, The Parliament was ended, and had not provided for the King, and That the Parliament had not provided, on left the King without Money; It is very probable he did say it; and, he thinks, he did so, for it was the truth.
To which my Lord Cottington Answered, That if the Gentlemen would have heard him out, he should have given good Satisfaction. He hath been Examined, Whether my Lord of Strafford used these Words, Extraordinary ways; and he cannot say he did; but he hath heard him say, The King ought to seek ont all due and legal ways, and to employ His Power, and Authority, and Prerogative, Castè & Candidè, he remembers these words very well.
For close of his Defence to these Words, That His Majesty had an Army in Ireland, to reduce this Kingdom, witnessed by Mr. Treasurer. My Lord of Strafford said, Mens Memories are weak, and the best may be mistaken, or misremember, and may think one Mansays that which another Man says, or that Man says that, which in Truth he did not say, as it is in this Case. Their Lordships have had all the light that is possible for him the Defendant to give them.
My Lord of Northumberland being examined on Oath, says, he remembers not the Words. My Lord Marquis Hamilton remembers them not. My Lord Treasurer of England remembers neither that, nor any Thing like it; My Lord Cottington remembers no such Thing, and is well assured, he never heard him say any such Thing. Here are all that are left of the Committee, save my Lord of Canterbury, and him (the Defendant) cannot examine, otherwise he would.
Secretary Wind bank is a little too far off to be heard at this Time, and if their Lordships could ask him, whether the Defendant ever spake the Words, on the Faith of a Christian and a Gentleman, he will take his Oath, he doth not think nor believe he ever spake them, but believes as constantly, as possible can be, that he never spake them; He would be loath to swear he did not, it being so long since: But when his Words shall more particularly, and specially be remembred by another Man, than by himself, he must commend that Memory, that observed what he said, so perfectly, as to be able to give a better account of them than himself, the Party that spake the Words, or any Man in the Company besides.
My Lord further insisted, That this concerns him very nearly, for it would be a grievous Charge that is on him by this Means (though not in the Intendment) of the Gentleman that urges it, who (he hopes wishes him well) if he should be thought to be an Overthrower of the Liberties of the Subject by a foreign Army.
However, it is a single Testimony, and no more, and that single Temony (without any Prejudice to the Testimony) cannot rise in Judgment against him; Nay, he cannot be Indicted nor Arraigned of High Treason for it, by the Statutes of 1 E. 6. Ca. 12. the last Proviso of it, in these Words.
Be it Enacted by the Authority aforesaid, That no Person or Persons after the First Day of February next coming, shall be Indicted, Arraigned, Condemned, or Convicted of any Offence of Treason, Petty-Treason, or Misprision of Treason, or any Words before specified, after the first Day of February, for which the said Offender or Speaker shall suffer any Pain of Death, Imprisonment, Loss, Forfeiture of Goods, Lands, or Tenements, unless the said Offender, or Speaker, be accused by two sufficient and lawful Witnesses, or shall willingly without Violence confess the same.
And if their Lordships will give leave to consider the first Part of the Words, being fairly and indifferently interpreted and with the secret Reservations, Men ought to speak Things withal (for we ought to think just Things, and that Men will do nothing but fairly, and these are Conditions implyed, when we speak of the Sacred Majesty of Kings) let that be implyed, it could not be High-Treason to tell the King, That having tryed the Affections of his People, he was loose and absolved from all Rules of Government; that is, all ordinary Rules, and was to do every Thing that Power would admit; that is, that Power would lawfully admit, and that His Majesty had tryid all Just and Honourable ways, and was refused, and should be acquitted both of God and Men.
The last words, That the King had an Army in Ireland, which he might imploy to reduce this Kingdom, he denies; and if the other Words be fairly interpreted with the reservations granted a Man in that case, being spoken of so great a Person as the King, nothing in them can turn so much to the prejudice of the Speaker.
But he desires leave to offer the Antecedents and Consequents of all that he said in Council, whereupon this is gathered; and then they find the Case otherwise stated, than as it is strained in the Charges. God forbid any Man should be judged for Words taken by pieces, here a Word and there a Word, where the Antecedent and Consequents are left out, for then Treason may be setcht out of every Word a Man speaks; as for Example, If one asks him whether he will go to such a Place, he tells him by Way of Answer, He will kill the King as soon; the other swears, he said, he would kill the King; it is very true indeed, but if the other words be added, it will then imply, That he will be sure not to kill the King, and therefore he will be sure not to goe to the place. And if the Words be taken together, he puts the Case thus; In Case of absolute necessity, and upon a foreign Invasion of an Enemy, when the Enemy is either actually entred, or ready to enter, and when all other Ordinary means fail, in this Case there is a Trust left by Almighty God in the King, to employ the best and uttermost of his Means, for the preserving of Himself and his People, which, under Favour, he cannot take away from Himself. And as this did precede these words, so there were divers restrictions added to them; for he says, this must be done only and upon no other pretence whatsoever, but for the preservation of the Common-wealth, that it must be done Candidè, & Castè, That if it were done on any other pretence whatsoever, than clearly and fairly, for preserving the Common-wealth, that would prove it to be oppressive and injurious, which otherwise rightly employed, would become a Pious and Christian King; and that when the present danger of the Common-wealth was, by the Wisdom, and Courage, and Power of the King prevented, and the publique Weal secured; In a time proper and, fit, the King was obliged to vindicate the Property and Liberty of the Subject from any ill prejudice, that might fall from such a Precedent; and until the Prerogative of the Crown, and Liberty of the Subject are so bounded, that they may be rightly understood by King and People, (which cannot be without a Parliament) His Majesty and they can never look-to be happy. Now if he shall make this appear to be true (as he hopes he shall) then he conceives he states their Lordships a quite different Question, from that brought against him in the Charge, and brings an Opinion so concluded, and shut up with restrictions, and with Necessity, and with unavoidable danger that were otherwise to fall on the Common-wealth, as he trusts, cannot bring any manner of ill Consequence whatsoever publickly or privately to any Creature.
To the Third Interrogatory he faith, That the Earl of Strafford declared his Opinion, That His Majesty might use his power when the Kingdom was in danger, or unavoidable necessity, or words to that effect.
To the Fourth, That the said Earl did often say, That that Power was to be used Candidè & Castè, and an account thereof should be given to the Parliament, that they might see it was only imployed to that use.
Marquis Hamilton examined to the said Interrogatory, (viz.) Whether the said Earl of Strafford delivering his Opinion, how far the King might use a Power after the breach of the late Parliament, did not put the Case when there was an unavoidable Necessity, upon actual Invasion, or an Enemy's Army ready to enter the Land?
His Lordship Answered, That he hears the Question, and remembers the same Question was asked him formerly on his Oath, when he was Deponed, and he then said as now, he could not call to mind what my Lord said in that Point.
His Lordship Answered, That he hath heard him use those words often to his Majesty, and on them, or immediately after, he declared his Opinion, That it would never be happy in this Kingdom till there be a right understanding between the King and his People, and that could not be, but by a Parliament.
Whether he did not say at that time, That the present Danger provided for, and all which settled, the King was bound to preserve the Liberty and Propriety of the Subject, from the Prejudice of such a Precedent?
He Answered, professing that his Memory is not good, and if it fails not him in this, he may boldly affirm, he heard my Lord of Strafford speak the Words, both before, and since the Dissolution of the last Parliament.
Being asked (on my Lord of Strafford's Motion) Whether His Majesty was pleased to declare to the Lords of the Council, That he had perfect and full Intelligence, that the Scotch Army intended to march into England.
He Answered, He remembers very well His Majesty had frequent Advertisements of the Scots Intentions to come into England, he knows it very well, and he had not done his Duty if he had concealed it; for he was one of them that told him of it.
His Lordship Answered, That he remembers something to this purpose, and Candidè & Castè makes him call it to mind, but the Particulars he cannot remember; Candidè & Castè, for using the King's Power, he hath heard often.
Answered, That he would be very loth to say any thing that doth not perfectly occurr to his Remembrance; he remembers that divers times at Council-Board, my Lord spake these Words, Candidè & Castè, and he remembers them very perfectly, but what Day and Time, he remembers not; but he remembers very perfectly, he heard my Lord of Strafford say, it must be on an urgent and unavoidable Occasion, that any By-course should be taken, or put in practice, but what Day and Time, he cannot tell; To the exact Words of the Interrogation, he cannot say, but something to the Sense, as he (the Examinant) delivers them.
He Answered, That he thinks no Man hath the Honour to sit at that Board, but will give him that Testimony, that he hath often spoken, That the greatest Happiness that can occurr to the King and People, is the happy Agreement and Understanding between them.
He Answered, That Phraze of Candidè & Castè, he remembers very well, were used more than once; but whether they were applied to this Particular, he cannot speak: He remembers my Lord used the Words in such a Sense, and the Interpretation of them was Chastely and Honestly, but the other Part he cannot remember.
He Answered, That he thinks he hath answer'd this already; he remembers the Words Candidè & Castè, and that the Power the King had for the Preservation of Himself, His Crown, Posterity, and People, ought to be used Candidè & Castè, in all fair and just Ways.
Being asked, whether my Lord did not say, That in the Conclusion, all must be settled by Parliament, and till all the Dispute betwixt the Prerogative of the Crown, and Liberty of the Subject be determined, neither King nor People should be Happy?
He Answered, That he verily believes many of their Lordships have often heard him say it; He hath heard my Lord say it to the King at the Council-Table. It hath been always his Position, and to himself the Examinant, he hath said often, both before the last Parliament, and after it was broken; and it was an ordinary Discourse to His Majesty, That His Majesty could not be Happy till there were an Happy Union betwixt Himself and the Parliament, and the Prerogative and Liberty of the Subjects were determined.
And my Lord of Strafford desired to have so much Benefit of their Lordships Justice, as to have the Examinations of my Lord Keeper, (which are not yet come in to these Points) reserved. And now he said he had stated to their Lordships truly and justly the Question, concerning these Words that are by pieces and paches charged; and which (taking the whole contexture of the Discourse, from the beginning to the ending)represent them quite otherwise (as he conceives) than might seem to be enforced against him.
He offered this further to their Lordships, That they fee plainly and clearly proved, that all times, and frequently, he hath presumed (by His Majesty's favour and good leave) to express himself, how necessary it is, for the Happiness of the King and People, that all these matters of difference should be settled and bounded, and that by Parliament: and that till they were so bounded, neither His Majesty nor they could be happy: so that it was far from going against the ancient grounds of Government, that have been here settled in that singular Providence and Wisdom of our Ancestors; and never shall he contribute any thing but to the maintainance and preservation of them, in all Honest and Honourable Ways and Means whatsoever; and if these Words were spoken with that moderation and qualification, that the Power to be used must be a lawful Power, and the Ways to be taken Lawful Ways, they were no way subject to exception.
Besides, there is one Argument that clears the Intendment and meaning of the Words, as he conceives, a great deal more prevalently, than if those Words of lawful Power, and Just and Honourable Ways, had been put in; And that is, that nothing hath been done by the King or the Council, against the Laws and Customs of the Realm, in pursuance of them, where it hath been any breach on any Liberty or Propriety of the Subject; What extraordinary Course hath been taken not warrantable by Law? None that he knows of; so that there being nothing but justly and fairly administred, the very Deed done, shews them to be spoken with that meaning, and so to be interpreted so much the rather, but how much doing well, is better than saying well; And the worst that can be made of them, they are but Words and no more; and for the excuse of them, their Lordships well remember what he said concerning the Statute, they can never amount to Treason, and before they shall be brought to him in a Criminal Charge, he besought their Lordships to observe something he shall offer to them.
These Words charged on him, were not want only, or unnecessarily spoken, or whispered in a corner, but they were spoken in full Council, where he was by the Duty of his Oath obliged, to speak according to his Heart and Conscience, in all Things concerning the King's service; so that if he had forborn to speak what he conceived, for the benefit and advantage of the King and People (as he conceived this to be) he had been perjured towards God Almighty, and now it seems by the speaking of them, he is in Danger to be a Traitor. If that Necessity be put upon him, he thanks God, by his Blessing he hath learned not to stand in fear of him that can kill the Body; but he must stand in fear of him that can cast Body and Soul into eternal pain. And if that be the Question, That he must be a Traitor to Man, or perjured to God, he will be faithful to his Creator; and whatsoever shall befall him from a popular rage, or his own Weakness, he must leave it to God Almighty, and to their Lordships Honour and Justice.
Nothing is more common, than for a Counsellor to be of one Opinion when he comes out of his Chamber, and to have that Opinion he delivers, presently after confuted and cleared by the Wisdom and Prudence of his fellow-Counsellors, of better understanding than himself. And in this Case (when Opinions are thus deliver'd, and when there are alterations of these Opinions, upon the very Debate) that an Opinion thus propounded, should rise in Judgment, to convince a Man of High-Treason, it is very hard; Nay, it is to be thought, that this was the very Case in this particular. The Opinion was, according to his Heart and Conscience given, and for any thing appears to their Lordships, something was said at that Board by others, wiser than himself, that altered him in that Opinion; for there was never any thing moved by him, to reinforce that proposition, he rested quiet with it, he offered it not again; there was never any thing done in pursuance of that advice, either by himself, or any Body else, which shews he did not press it, but was rather perswaded by better reason, that it was fit, to be let alone. An Opinion may make an Heretick, but he never heard before, that Opinion should make a Traitor. And though Opinions may make an Heretick, yet they must be held pertinaciously, and against the light of a Mans own Conscience; here no pertinacy appears, no contestation, nothing done against the light of his Heart and Conscience, nothing of Obstinacy, Frowardness, and Perverseness; but simply (simply indeed in all respects) he did in the Duty of this place, deliver his Opinion modestly and fairly, and when he had done there, he left it, and pursued it no further: so that such an Opinion as this, would not have made an Heretick, much less a Traitor.
In the last place, he humbly beseeches their Lordships not to make themselves so unhappy, as to disable themselves and their Children, from undergoing the great Charge and Trust of the Common-wealth. Their Lordships have it from their Fathers, they are born to great Thoughts, and are nursed up for the great and weighty Imployments of the Kingdom; and God forbid that any but themselves, Cæteris paribus, should have this great Trust, that their Birth and Breeding, and Ranks procure for them, under the King's Goodness.
But let this be admitted, That a Counsellor delivering his Opinion under an Oath of Secresie and Faithfulness at Council-Table Candidè & Castè with others, shall upon his mistaking, or not knowing of the Law, be brought into question, and every Word that passeth from him, out of a sincere and Noble Intention, shall be drawn against him, for the attainting and convicting himself, his Children, and Posterity; under favour, after this shall be so, he doth not know any wise and Noble Person of Fortune, that will upon such perilous and unsafe Terms, adventure to be a Counsellor to the King: and therefore if their Lordships put these hard strains, and tortures upon those that are the Counsellors of State to His Majesty, when they speak nothing but according to their Hearts and Consciences, (for we that are not of the profession of the Law, are not bound to speak the Law, we can tell what in Our Hearts and Consciences we conceive Honourable and Just, but what's legal, is another Mans Business.) Th.sshall disable their Lordships from those great Imployments, to which their Birth and Thoughts do breed them, and make them more uncapable than any other inferior Subjects: And therefore he beseeches their Lordships to look on him so, that his misfortune may not bring an inconvenience upon themselves And so he besought their Lordships to pardon what he had said, with a great deal of disorder, and if their Lordships take him into consideration, they will find that nothing hath appeared in him, but what is Honest, Just, and Faithful to King and People; though they were not so advised and discreet, and well weighed as they ought to be, yet he hoped their Lordships are so Honourable and Good, as not to lay their Charge to him as High-Treason.
That their Lordships have heard with a great deal of Patience, this long Defence made by my Lord of Strafford, and desired the like Patience from their Lorships, in hearing the Reply, which he doubts not but they shall obtain, and give a clear Answer to all my Lord of Strfford hath spoken in his own Defence; and how that it comes not at all to excuse him in this Case.
My Lord is pleased to make it his suit, that their Lordships will not be guided by enforcement of words against him, but by the words themselves; and that Mr. Whitlock, desired likewise, presuming that their Lordships will not be guided by my Lord of Straffords interpretation of these words to another sense, than the words bear, but judge according to the clear understanding, and Common signification of them, further than which he will not strain them.
Whereas my Lord excuses his Words, that the Demands by the Scotch in their Parliament, were a sufficient ground of War, because he gave no other Opinion than the rest of the Council then did; their Lordships may be pleased to observe, That my Lord Traquair testifies, that some of the Council were of another Opinion at that Time, and that these Words were spoken before the reason of those Demands were given; and that there was a clear difference betwixt my Lord of Straffords advice, and the advice of the rest: It is evident by the Opinion delivered by him long before that time in sentencing of Mr. Stuart in Ireland, where, after the pacification, he was pleased to call the Scots Rebels and Traitors, and that he would Root them out Stock and Branch that took not the Oath; And he said in his Answer, That when he came out of Ireland into England, he found the affairs of Scotland of distempered, that he thought fit to reduce the Kings Subjects there by force.
His Lordship says, That if the Demands struck at the Root of Government, then it was fit to say, they should be reduced by force; But the Words were spoken before the reasons of the Demands were known, and before he could know how they could be Warranted by the Laws of that Kingdom; and it is part of the Charge of the House of Commons, That he said They slruck at the Root of Government, which it appears they did not; for those very Demands, against which my Lord of Strafford delivered his Opinion, are since enacted by the Parliament of Scotland, and confirmed by His Majesties Royal Authority in the Treaty, which is very well known to divers of their Lordships fitting here.
My Lord says, It was first resolved a War should be had; and then, for him to debate, Whether an Offensive or Defensive War, is no Crime: but, that receives a clear Answer; for, it was his Resolution, his Advice, That there should be a War, and an Offensive War; which shews his Design against the Kingdom of Scotland.
My Lord labours to prove, That the seizing the Scotch Ships was not by his Warrant, but by Warrants otherwise procured. That was not insisted on in the Charge, and therefore they will not insist upon it in the Reply, there is enough besides.
My Lord is further pleased to say, That there is no substantial or concluding Proof of his intent, that the Parliament should be only called, to try whether there would be supply given or no; and, that is only deposed by my Lord Primate, a single Testimony: But, my Lord Primate concurs with others, in the same sense and meaning.
To my Lord Conwayes Testimony, my Lord says, That, for the King to help Himself, is a Natural Motion, and proper to every one: But, the other Words of my Lord Conwayes Testimony, That the King might help and supply Himself, though it were against the Will of His Subjects, must be understood, not of a Natural, but a violent Motion, and it appears to be my Lord of Straffords Design to have it so.
But, this proves his intent, That if the Parliament were dissolved (as he was willing it should, as it will afterwards appear) he would assist the King in any other Way whatsoever: He took a good Pattern, Stare super per vias antiques, and we shall prove that too; but, this was not via antiqua of Parliaments, to propose Supplies in the first place, and to put off consideration of grievances, to urge nothing but to give to the King; and, before a Resolution, whether they would give or not, to inform against the Parliament by Misinformation.
My Lord mentions the Declaration of the House of Commons in Ireland, concerning the giving of Four Subsidies for the Kings supply of the War with Scotland, which is in the Charge, but was not insisted upon; But by shewing this, my Lord of Strafford hath procured that which is likewise in the Charge, That the Parliament of Ireland did engage themselves in the War against Scotland, and by the Preamble of his Answer,
He says, That had he ever entertained such thought, as the Words proved, import, he should give Judgment against himself: But, as no Mans Thoughts can be proved but by his Words and Actions, so the Words proved do manifest, that his Thonghts were no other, and shew clearly his intention, to bring in an Army on us to reduce this Kindom.
My My Lord calls Sir Robert Kings Testimony a Report on a Report; and, says the like of the Testimony of my Lord Ranalagh, which shall be answered, when he comes to lay the whole matter together, according to the Course of opening the Articles.
Diverse Witnesses his Lordship produces, to prove, that the 8000 Foot raised in Ireland, were designed for Scotland, and particularly for the Town of Aire, which is very improbable; for that Town (as was informed, and will be proved) was, at that time, very well fortified; and the Coasts thereof, and the Haven so barred, and narrow, that one of my Lord of Straffords own Witnesses says, there could be no probability of Landing an Army there: The like may be said of the Frith of Dunbarton, that was Fortified long before. And, if their Lordships repar to some part of my Lord of Straffords Answer, where he says, they were to be landed in some places near the Country of my Lord of Argyle, to divert him: These places are so far from his Country, and such Armes of the Sea, and unpassable Mountains are interposed, that they could not be landed there with any intention to go to Argyles Country.
But, admit there were a primary intention of this Army in some part of Scotland, the Witnesses speak only to what was intended before the Army was raised; But, when the Army was on Foot, my Lord of Straffords intention might be changed, and it seems it was; for he laboured to perswade His Majesty, to make use of it to reduce this Kingdom.
He says, The Testimony touching Sir George Wentworths Words is single, and spoken by his Brother, and could not reach him; but, though one Witness testifies the Words, yet it may be made appear to their Lordships, that presently after the Words spoken, Sir Tho. Barrington related them to other Gentlemen, who are ready to testifie, that he so related them.
Next my Lord Discourses of my Lord of Bristols Testimony, and the differences of Opinion between them, touching the summoning of a Parliament. But, my Lord of Bristol proves the following Words, That the King was not to suffer himself to be mastered by the frowardness of His People, &c. and, to these, no Answer is given.
My Lord of Strafford was pleased to mention the Statute of 1 E. 6. ta. 12. where, to compass by Preaching, or saying, to deprive the King, is not for the first offence Treason, though Words of a more transcendent and high Nature; and hence he inferr'd, that the Words charged on him are not Treason.
But that Statute is only of Treasons spoken of the King, but not of Words and Counsels, that advise the thing to be done: And, there is no Question, but at this day, for any Man to Advise and Counsel the Destruction of the King, is High-Treason, nowithstanding the Statute. These Words charged on my Lord, are a Declaration of his Intention, to subvert the Laws and Government of the Kingdom, and, the use made of the Words, is not, that they are in themselves Treason, but as they prove that Intention. But, this is the Work of another time, being matter of Law, and therefore Mr. Whitlock said, he would say no more to it now, neither doth it require his Answer, nor is it at all to this business.
My Lord did much insist on it, that there was no mention by any of the Lords that were of the Committee for the Scotch Affairs, concerning the Words of bringing the Army out of Ireland, to reduce this Kingdom, diverse of their Lordships being to that point Examined: But, Mr. Treasurer Swears in the Affirmative, he heard the Words spoken; and, when they come to sum up the rest of these Words, and applying them to this, shew the dependance. they have one upon another, their Lordships will fee plainly, that must be his Intention, and that there could be no other interpretation of his Words: It is possible, for some that were at the Council, not to hear the Words, and yet that disproves riot a Witness, that says in the Affirmative, he did hear the Words. And, though some of my Lords do not remember some other passages, as, That His Majesty was loose, and absolved from all Rules of Government, yet that is proved by two Witnesses; and, though the rest remember them not, yet that stands clearly proved.
Other things, which some of their Lordships did not remember, were proved by three Witnesses: Whence it may be deduced, that, what Mr. Treasurer deposes is to be believed, though some of my Lords that were present did not remember it.
And first, their Lordships will remember the Words that passed betwixt Sir George Ratcliffe, and Sir Robert King; and, the Relation between my Lord of Strafford and Sir George Ratcliffe; And, before my Lord of Strafford came out of Ireland, he gave direction to Sir George Ratcliff; and afterwards, on a Discourse, Sir Robert saying, how my Lord of Strafford, and how the said Sir George Ratcliffe had least cause to desire a War; Sir George replyed, We are ingaged (not himself only) but We (speaking of my Lord of Strafford) are ingaged in a War: and, Sir George says further, that the King hath 30000 Men, and 40000l. in his Purse, and a Sword by His Side, and if he wanted Money, who would pity Him? which cannot be intended but by raising of Money on the Subjects of England.
But besides, their Lordships may remember the expression of my Lord Ranalaugh, and Sir Robert King; that these Forces were intended to be used for raising Monies here; and, that my Lord of Strafford offers to fell his Land in Ireland. Besides, his Brother said, the Common-wealth is sick of Peace, and would not be well till it was Conquer'd again, which must imply Force, and an Army to do it.
It is a Proof of my Lord of Strafford's Intention, that a Parliament should be summon'd to give Supply, and, if not, that then it should be Dissolved, and other Courses should be taken; My Lord Primate's Deposition is, That, in case of Necessity, His Majesty might use His Prerogative, might levy what he needed, only first it was fit to try the Parliament, and, if that succeeded not, then to use his Prerogative as he pleases.
My Lord Conway proves the same Intention; my Lord of Strafford saying to him, That if the Parliament supplied not the King, His Majesty would be acquitted before God and Men, if he took some other Course to supply himself, though against the Will of His Subjects; And, it cannot be intended to be against their Will, but it must be by Force; for, if it be with their Will, it is Voluntary.
He told my Lord of Bristol, in that Discourse with him, That His Majesty was not to suffer Himself to be Mastered with the Frowardness and Undutifulness of His People: And, if His Majesty was not to suffer Himself to be Mastered by them, but to Master them, it cannot be, but by Strength of others.
My Lord of Holland proves more fully, (and my Lord of Newborough concurs with him) That His Majesty had an Advantage to supply Himself other Ways, because the Parliament had denied to supply him: And there be no other Ways (save Parliament Ways) but Extraordinary, and Illegal Ways.
My Lord of Strafford hath much laboured, to answer and qualify the last Words, but he comes short of it: And those Words are as fearful, and of as High a Nature, as can be expressed by a Subject, and by a Counsellor to his Soveraign.
The first Part of the said last Words are clearly proved by the Testimony of my Lord of Northumberland, and Mr. Treasurer, That the King had tried His People, and was Absolved from all Rules of Government; That He was to do all that Power would admit; that he had try'd all Ways and was refused, and should be acquitted before God and Men.
The latter Part Mr. Treasurer only reaches to, That His Majesty had an Army in Ireland, which he might imploy to reduce this Kingdom: And comparing these Words with the former, if the King be absolved from all Rules of Government, Which way can that Power be used, but by bringing in an Army, the latter Words being dependant and consequent to the former? and, if they be compared together, and sum'd up, their Lordships will be satisfied, that this was the Intention of my Lord of Strafford, to bring an Army out of Ireland into this Kingdom to reduce it, and that his Purpose was, by a strong Hand, to compel the Subjects of the Kingdom to submit to an Arbitary Power, and whatsoever should be imposed on them.
And whereas my Lord makes it a great Part of his Excuse, that nothing was executed upon this Counsel, we must give humble Thanks to His Majesty; for if his Counsel might have taken place, no doubt but that had been done, which was laboured and advised to be done: But a Gracious Soveraign would not take hold on those Counsels, but rejected them, as to that, though so much was done on other Counsels, and Misinformations of my Lord of Strafford, as my Lord of Strafford will never be able to justify.
That nothing is done, is no Excuse to him: It is an Obligation to the King's Subjects, the more to Love and Honour him: But, it shews clearly my Lord of Strafford's Intention, if it might have taken place, to have changed the Laws, to have brought an Army upon us, and, by them, compel us to submit to an Arbitrary Power.
And so Mr. Whitlock concluded, That he should trouble their Lordships no further at this Time, having answered most of the Things my Lord of Strafford hath insisted on, and if he hath forgotten them, he hopes he shall be holpen by some of his Colleagues; but he supposes that it appears clearly, that my Lord of Strafford's Intentions were, to subvert the Laws, to set a Division betwixt the King and His People; and, though His Lordship is pleased to make something slight of it, as not to be Matter of Treason; yet, this compared with his other Actions, declaring his Intention and Designs, it proves it not only to be Crimen læsa Majestatis, but also Reipublicæ.
Mr. Maynard seconded Mr. Whitlock, and said, That something he should presume to add, My Lord of Strafford excuses himself, because he was not alone in the Council against Scotland; Thus far he was alone, the rest concluded upon a Hipothetical Proposition; If the Demands were unreasonable, then a War was fit. But in two Propositions he was alone:
For the Matter of Excuse, of what he said to the King in private, it was testified only by one, who was then present, and at other times in Council, viz. That there would be no Happiness till there was a good Agreement betwixt King and People.
Whence Mr. Maynard observ'd, That they think not that all he spake is nought; but, they produce Proofs, that he did speak nought; they think him not so unwise upon all Occasions, to speak Words of so high a Consequence: He hath taken another Course to weaken their Testimonies; and, nothing is so strong, but (if that Course be allowed that he uses) it will take off the Strength of it.
Mr. Maynard said, He hath heard of breaking a Thing to pieces, by taking to pieces, and if my Lord of Strafford shall take every Parcel of the proof, and say, this is a single Testimony; This is Matter of Discourse; This I speak at my Table; This in my Chamber; taking them asunder, he may answer them asunder; But if he hath in his Chamber, and at Counsel; and in Bed, and on all Occasions presumed to run to high on the Liberty of the Subject, and then think, that because he speaks sometimes good Words, all must be plaistered up; he must give us; leave to differ from him in that.
The Witnesses say, he spake the Words Candidè & Castè, some speak to the Occasion, most say, they were spoken at several times, both before and after the Parliament, and if they must be apply'd only to what is lawful, what need these Adverbs to make it good? Truly he may say, it was done Cautè, it was done Castè in this Cause.
For that my Lord hath said, Divers Witnesses were by, and heard not the Words deposed by my Mr. Treasurer, What Argument is this? That when divers are by, that which divers do not remember is not true? My Lord confesses himself sometimes, that Witnesses do not remember all Things, therefore it may be true, that something may be spoken, which Witnesses remember not, else he confesses against himself which is not true.
There be other Things wherein the Witnesses do concurr, and that my Lord speaks not to, though he speaks to that which my Lord of Northumberland, and the rest do not remember: And therefore it is no Argument to say, some were by and heard not what was spoken.
The Sum of the Case will come to this, There was a Parliament sitting, he a little before casts out Words, about raising Money, where he must have Adverbs to make it good; he must raise Money in an extraordinary Way, the Parliament is broken, and a Necessity is made, and Soldiers must be brought in, to make good these Ways: Now take these asunder, and my Lord of Strafford will make it a good Action; but, as Mr. Maynard shew'd, they conceive all my Lord of Strafford hath done, ended in that Design; he began it before he came over; and though they believe His Majesty design'd it for Scotland, they speak not what His Majesty meant, but what my Lord of Strafford counselled, that is the Thing he is charg'd with.
And whereas his Friends, and those nearest him, spoke of this Fire that hath burst out, he fays, this concerns him not: Indeed he is very unhappy, if his Brother, or bosom Friend must be the Man that must accuse him. But Noscitur ex Comite qui non cognoscitur exse. It comes out of his own Mouth, and his Friends Expressions. When Sir George Ratcliffe is asked how Money will be had? He Answered, We will make Peace with the Scots, and that is the worst of Evils. Surely, he that thought a Peace betwixt the two Nations, the worst of Evils, deserves not the Applause that hath been given him in this Place: And if that comes to pass, this must have relation to that of which he spake, which is the leving of Money by Force; The King hath 30000 Men, and 400000 l. in his Purse, and a Sword by his Side, and if he wants Money, who would pity him? Lastly, My Lord of Strafford came to speak of their Lordships Privilege, That if Words spoken in Council should be pressed, it would bring a disability on their Noble Lordships, to enter into those imployment; but, that can be no excuse, to say, that he must take notice of the things honourable; and, for every thing that a Man speaks at Council, he must not be brought into Question.
It is not every thing, nor every thing that is illegal, that is brought into Question; But, if he advise to bring an Army on us, to Master all we have, and he must not be questioned, Where then are their Lordships Priviledges? and, Who knows how soon there may be no difference betwixt a Peer and another?
In all this Defence, my Lord of Strafford hath not offered any Defence for the Scandal which he put upon the last Parliament; which, to the last breath, to the last minute of their Continuance, did advise and consult of the Supply of His Majesty: yet, he calls this, a denying of the King; a forsaking of the King; an undutiful stubborness; and, what else his high Speech and Eloquence pleases, to misconstrue their Actions with.
To that Stat, 1 E. 6. Mr. Maynard said, He shall not need to give any further Answer; for, if it be looked to, it will appear nothing to concern this Case, there being great difference between words spoken with relation to action; For, these be Counsels, and if a Man shall Counsel the Death of the King, Will any Man doubt whether this be Treason? Surely no Man will doubt it, that knowes the Laws of England.
The Treason is not in his Words, but in his wicked Counsels: For (under favour) if it be true that he spake them, they may be called wicked; and, that it is true, they have offered proof, and so he left it to their Lordships.
Mr. Glyn desired to add a word, it concerning the Kingdom and Peers; Their Lordships observe, how my Lord of Strafford stands questioned for subverting of the Laws, and for designing to introduce an Arbitrary Government; the other Day his Design appeared, in exercising of a Tyrannical Power over the Persons, Estates, and Liberties of the Kings Subjects; and, though a design was in practice, and something put in execution, yet there was something left, whereby that Treason might be raised to a higher strain; For that proofs were produced the other Day, the exercise of this Tyrannical Power in his Person, which was the stopping of the Streams of Justice, but, the Fountain of Justice was still uncorrupted, and hope left, and God be thanked we have hope still.
But, this Days Work is to prove, That he ascended the Throne, and, by his ill Counsels, the Venome he had hatcht in his own Heart, he endeavoured to infuse into the King's Person, to make Him of the same opinion with himself; and that is to endeavour to corrupt the Fountain; But; God be thanked he hath met with a Gracious King, upon whom he cannot prevaile.
The words laid to his Charge, are very many; That he should tell the King, he was Absolved from all Rules of Government, and, that he had an Army in Ireland, which he might employ to reduce this Kingdom: The Latter Part of the Words he hath endeavoured to Answer, and the former part proved by positive Witnesses, which he hath not given Answer to.
For the latter, that concerns the Irish Army, Mr. Glynn said, He shall not need to put their Lordships in mind of any thing said; but whereas my Lord says, They are proved by one Witness only, if your Lordships revise their Notes, they shall find them prov'd by many Witnesses.
My Lord Cottington, one of the Honourable Persons present, when the words were spoken, testifies to their Lordships, That he remembers my Lord of Strafford told the King, That after things were settled, he was. bound to repair the property of the Subject, and this, under favour, proves something; for if some Counsel and Advice were not given, that there should be an Invasion on the Property, what should engage him to tell the King, he should restore it?
Mr. Glynn proceeded; that if their Lordships please to look on my Lord of Strafford's Interrogatory, they shall find it asked his Lordship, Whether he did not tell the King; that he should make restitution of the Subjects properties, when the danger was over; and why should his Conscience ask such a Question, unless there were Counsel given, to invade the propriety of the Subject?
Your Lordships remember the Words of Sir George Wentworth, (which Mr. Glynn said he will not repeat) and when my Lord was fixed by the words of his Brother, he said, That tho' he be my Brother, I do not use to communicate my Counsels to him, and that I am on my Oath to conceal; yet this great Counsel he did impart to Mr, Slingsby for. his own purpose, and to Sir William Pennyman.
And so having spoken to the latter part of the Words, (the reducing of the Subjects of England by the Irish Army) to shew that it stands not only on a single proof, but if the whole be recollected together, there be many things concurring to the positive proof thereof.
Mr. Glynn put their Lordships in mind of the others words, to which two great Witnesses concurr, and no Answer at all is given, viz. That the Parliament denyed Supply, and the King is loose, and absolved from, all rules of Government; put the other words out of doors (as they are not) if the King be loose from all rules of Government, is he not loose to do what he will?
And Mr. Glynn added, That he must needs give Answer to something, that fell from my Lord, concerning other words, that they were words of Discourse, and what he speaks at his Bed, or his Table, or in private Discourse, he thinks they should not be brought against him. But Mr. Glynn besought their Lordships to remember, that if my Lord speaks the words as a Privy Counsellor speaking to the King, concerning the Subjects property, compare these words with the other Extermination, and then see what the Case is.
The last thing in his Defence, is as high as the Charge it self. He is charged, That being a Privy Counsellor, and entrusted by the King, and a Man of such Eminence, he should indeavour to infuse into the King's Sacred Person, such dangerous Counsels, tending to the destruction of the Law and Government, and consequently of the King and Subject; And in the close, my Lord of Strafford put their Lordships in mind, what a dangerous thing it is for one of the King's Counsel, to be charged for Words spoken at Council-Table, to speak this in such a Presence before the Peers, and Commons of the Realm; That a Privy Counsellor, who ought to be clear and candid, is not to be questioned, though he infuse dangerous Counsels. That it is justification of his own Act, and so great, that he knows not how my Lord could say greater; and so he said, he hath no more to say, their Lordships had heard the Proofs and Defence, and comparing them together, he doubts not but their Lordships are satisfied, That the Commons had just cause to do what they have done.
My Lord of Strafford desired to Answer one thing, the Gentleman that spake last, said, touching his revealing the King's Counsels to Mr. Slingsby and others; he would he loth to be charged with breaking his Duty to God; and the King, but where he hath Power and Liberty; for as concerning the imployment of that Army, the King left it wholly to him, to acquaint whom he thought fit, for the bettering of the Service.
But the thing that makes him rise, is, to represent to their Lordships, that he hath been there constantly in a great deal of weakness and infirmity, since 7 or 8 of the Clock, and now it is 5. That his Speech and Voice are spent, and it is not possible for him to come here to morrow; and therefore he most humbly besought their Lordships, to give him the respit of a Day, to restore his. little strength it shall please God to lend him, for he is not able to speak or stand. Which the Committee for the Commons House said, they should not oppose, if it stand, with their Lordship's pleasure.
Mr. Pym did only add this; That if their Lordships please to observe my Lord of Strafford's endeavours to prove divers mitigations of his words, some by Mr. Comptroller, and some others; by my Lord Goring. But their Lordships may observe, that the words in the Charge were spoken at the Committee; the words spoken of by, Mr. Comptroller, were at the Council-Table, and therefore they are not the same, nor serve they for extenuation of words spoken at another time.