The Diary of Thomas Burton: 25 May 1657

Pages 120-124

Diary of Thomas Burton Esq: Volume 2, April 1657 - February 1658. Originally published by H Colburn, London, 1828.

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Monday, May 25, 1657.

Mr. Downing moved, that in regard the noble lord was not there who was to report from his Highness, that short ingrossed Bill for changing the market day at Carlisle, might be read; which was done accordingly.

It passed, nemine contradicente, for a law, and it was ordered to desire his Highness's consent.

Mr. Bond moved for Colonel Bingham to have leave to go into the country, his sister being sick of the small pox, which was granted.

Mr.— (fn. 1) offered a Bill for the better maintenance of the ministers of Portsmouth, which was read the first time, and ordered to be read a second time on Saturday next.

Major-General Bridge moved that Colonel Louthian's petition, which was appointed for this day, might be read tomorrow; which was ordered.

Lord Chief-Justice Glynn. (fn. 2) I stand up only to acquaint you that the Committee did attend his Highness, who returned this answer: That her would meet this House this day, in the Fainted Chamber at ten o'clock.

Mr. Fowell. I move that you present all the Bills that you have ready; for this Bill (fn. 3) is a changing of the government. It is worthy your consideration whether, if this Bill pass, you lose not all your business of this Parliament; should every Bill be required to pass the other House, before it be a law.

Mr. Grove. I second that motion, that all the Bills that are ready may be first presented. There is a clause that the altering the title shall not change or prejudice your proceedings.

The Master of the Rolls and Mr. Speaker, agreed that all the Bills are lost; the Bill for assessments and all. Therefore would have all the other Bills presented before that Bill.

Mr. Waller. His Highness has no notice of any other Bills to be presented to him; therefore you will surprise him. I move that only the Petition and Advice may be presented.

Lord Chief-Justice Glynn. There is a clause, already provided, against the dissolving the Parliament, which will preserve your proceedings a-foot.

The clause was read, but found to fall short.

Mr. Bampfield. I move to have all the Bills carried up, for it is very clear that no law can pass after this Petition and Advice, but by consent of the three estates. Another House may be set up to-morrow, and yet this House stand too. I should be sorry to surprise his Highness, but when he passed Bills before, his Highness had no particular notice of what was to pass, yet he gave his consent upon the knowledge he had had before.

Colonel Jones. I move that you would carry up no more Bills. It may be the way to lose your Bill; for it is probable he will have time to deliberate. I desire rather it may be two or three days hence, and would only carry this Bill at this time; also the Resolves touching the Commissioners and other matters. These indeed I would have carried up.

Mr. Bodurda. There is no need to carry up the Resolves now; for the vote for 600,000l. per annum is security sufficient for all the rest. (fn. 4) Again, you must, if you carry up other Bills, make an Act to preserve the Sessions, as you did before.

Mr. Godfrey. I move that you present the Bills that you have ready; for it is clear that the passing this Bill determines the power of making laws by this Parliament, without the other House. I move that his Highness may have notice that you are not ready.

Mr. Pedley. I move for a short Bill to be drawn up to preserve your Sessions.

Mr. Lechmere. I move that a Bill may be drawn up to preserve your Sessions, and that will be sufficient; for I cannot give my verdict upon what was moved before, that no laws can pass without the consent of the other estates.

Mr. Recorder. The former Bill for preserving the Sessions, is sufficient to preserve this.

Mr. Speaker read the Act, and seemed to be of opinion that it would serve.

Amidst this debate his Highness's carriages passed by, and Mr. Downing espied them, and said his Highness was passed by. Some called out" Scout, scout !" (fn. 5) and altum risum. The former debates fell all asleep.

Mr. Speaker desired direction what to say or do; whether the clerk or he should read the Petition and Advice, or any part of it, and what he should say; and if his Highness did not consent, what should be entered. And he offered a question, that it should be read by the clerk and his Highness's consent desired thereunto.

Lord Whitlock. I move that you would insert in your question, not to read it unless his Highness desire it.

Mr. Grove. I move that the clerk desire his Highness to appoint a time when he will be attended about passing of the other Bills.

Major-General Goffe. I move that the doors be shut, and that the members that are gone out be sent for, and that the room be cleared of strangers.

Mr. Margetts. I second Mr. Grove's motion.

Mr. Speaker and Mr. Bond. It was never known that the House carried up any message themselves, but always by a Committee.

It was moved to declare whether the House will come hither again from the Painted Chamber.

Mr. Godfrey. I move that you make no resolution to adjourn hither again till you see the issue. You know not but his Highness, upon this meeting, may dissolve you.

Mr. Recorder. There is no sign of a dissolution. However, we are to provide for an adjournment hither, and not to take notice of what may happen in such cases.

Mr. Speaker. Though you make no adjournment you must come hither of course. You cannot stir till you have notice of his Highness being in the Painted Chamber.

There were other motions, but want of time thrust all out.

The Bill for Captain Arthur (fn. 6) was read and opened, and the debate adjourned till to-morrow morn.

The House being acquainted that a serjeant from his Highness was at the door, he was called in. It was Serjeant Middleton, who acquainted the House that his Highness was in the Lord's House, and commanded him to acquaint the House with it.

This misnomer of the place caused altum silentium, and it was excused thus, and so entered in the book that his Highness was in the Painted Chamber. (fn. 7)

The message being delivered, there was no time for further debate; but it was presently moved that Lord Tweedale and Lord Eure should lead the Speaker to the Painted Chamber, which was done accordingly.

Mr. Speaker acquainted his Highness that the Parliament had commanded him to acquaint his Highness with the alterations in the Petition and Advice, and to desire his consent to the whole, mutato nomine tantum, and his Highness presently gave his consent, and then made a short speech, as see hereafter, as also Mr. Speaker's speech; and the House returned again.

Mr. Speaker moved, that he might have time till to-morrow, to report his Highnesses speech.

Major Morgan. I move that it may be made now; to the end no time may be lost. It is but eleven o'clock, and I hope we might so order our time, as to think of an adjournment after a short time.

Mr. Speaker hasted the question to adjourn, and so it was Resolved, that the House be adjourned till to-morrow morning.


  • 1. Blank in MS.
  • 2. Whitlock appears to have become weary of his distinction. "Having as chairman, dispatched the great point of the humble Petition and Advice, touching the title of king, which was now. laid aside, I absented myself, as much as I could, from the Committee, that some other might be employed, in some other points relating to the Petition." Memorials, (1732) pp. 656, 657.
  • 3. The humble Petition and Advice.
  • 4. Meaning, no doubt, that for the sake of this Revenue-Bill the Protector would not consider as annulled the previous proceedings.
  • 5. He held the post of Scout-master-general.
  • 6. " For satisfying him for divers sums of money, disbursed by him for the service of this Commonwealth, out of forfeited lands, houses, or leases in Ireland." Journals. See Vol. i. p. 204.
  • 7. " The serjeant brings word, that Serjeant Middleton was at the door with a message from his Highness, and thereupon he was called in, and, having made two obeisances to the House, when he came into the middle of the House, with his mace in his hand, he declared to Mr. Speaker, that he is commanded by his Highness the Lord Protector, to let this House know that his Highness is in the Painted Chamber, and desires to speak with this honourable House; and thereupon withdrew." Journals.