The Diary of Thomas Burton: 25 March 1656-7

Page 393

Diary of Thomas Burton Esq: Volume 1, July 1653 - April 1657. Originally published by H Colburn, London, 1828.

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Wednesday, March 25, 1657.

The House resumed the debate upon the Remonstrance.

The question being put, that this clause, viz. "that your Highness will be pleased to assume the name, style, title, dignity and office of King (fn. 1) of England, Scotland, and Ireland, and the respective dominions and territories thereunto belonging; and to exercise the same, according to the laws of these nations," be part of the Remonstrance.

The House was divided. The yeas went forth.

Yeas 123. Sir John Reynolds and Lord Howard, Tellers.

Noes 62. Major-general Boteler and Colonel Salmon, Tellers.

So it was Resolved. (fn. 2)


  • 1. A blank was left here, on the presentation of the Remonstrance, see supra, p. 378, note.
  • 2. "The last night, the Parliament passed the great article, viz. to propound to his Highness the title, dignity, &c. of King; so that business will now be very shortly ended. "Mr. Secretary is wholly taken up about this kingly affair, and, I believe, will scarce write this post. There were several bitter speeches made last night in Parliament against the business, but they could not carry it, there being almost two to one against them, and for it." Moreland to Pell, "Whitehall, 26 March, 1657." This majority is also reported to Mr. Pell, with an air of triumph, by Sir W. Lockhart, (see supra, p. 107.) from "Paris, March 31." Lansdowne MSS., 755, No. 62. Moreland had thus written to Fell:— "Whitehall, 15 March, 1656–7. There has been lately a Bill presented in Parliament, by Sir Christopher Pack, an alderman, for the re-establishing a kingly government, the scanning whereof takes up all their time, and causes many serious debates. (I was about to have written hot debates, by some particulars.) They have, nevertheless, as I hear, passed several articles, or heads thereof. They leave the article wherein his Highness is desired to assume the title, dignity; &c. as King, till the last. A little time may produce great matters." Lansdowne MSS. 755. No. 63. The following passages in later letters, written from Whitehall, by Moreland to Pell, are not uninteresting:— "April 14. Not many days ago his Highness denied the crown, after the Parliament made a vote of adherence to their former resolutions, and thereupon sent a Committee yesterday to his Highness, to whom, in the Banquetting House, his Highness made a speech, so dark that none knows whether he will accept of it or no: but some think he will accept it. The Lord knows the issue of these things. The Parliament are, I think, providing reasons to persuade him." "April 16. My Lord has not yet accepted the crown, but gives dubious answers; so that we know nothing as yet. I beseech the Lord to bless him. If ever man deserved a crown, I think he does." Ibid. No. 95, 96. I have been disposed to conjecture, that Milton, so far from lending his pen to vilify the Long Parliament (supra, p. 383, note †) could not have resolved even to serve the public under the Usurpation, if he had not applied to Cromwell what he had said of Ceæsar—" quamvis enim regnum in republic, violentiùs invadebat, erat tamen regno fortasse dignissimus." (Though he violently subverted the republic, he appeared most worthy to have reigned.) See "Pro Populo Anglicano Defensio." (1651) p. 159.