Diary of Thomas Burton Esq: Volume 2, April 1657 - February 1658. Originally published by H Colburn, London, 1828.
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Wednesday, February 3,1657–8.
Sir Arthur Haslerigge had moved, before I came in, that we would declare upon our question whether we mean the old Lords or new Lords ?
Mr. Gewen was moving, when I came in, to the whole system of government; and concluded with this motion: That now we are a free Parliament, we would draw up a Bill to invest his Highness in the title and dignity of King, Providence having cast it upon him. (fn. 1)
Alderman Gibbes. The Lords and Gentlemen of the other House have no investiture by the writ, into the powers and privileges of the other House; (fn. 2) and I am sure there's no such power given in your Petition and Advice. If they have no more power than you have thereby given them, their commission is very defective. These powers were not hereditary to the writs of the other House, nor to the woolsacks they sit on. Admit you set up a Star-chamber, shall all the powers run along with that Court? It was moved by a young gentleman the other day, that they were not as fetters, but as a bit. (fn. 3)
Time was when the Lord Mayor claimed a negative upon the Council, (fn. 4) and I know what use was made of that.
I say not but the constitution may be good; but, after so much blood and treasure lost, shall we just return to our former grievances. I grant there is nothing but negative powers given them; but I have heard much said of danger, if we comply not to them as a House of Peers.
1. You can pass no laws.
Take it into consideration, how you can make them a House of Peers, or else declare they shall have all the old powers.
2. It is said, it is implied.
Acts of Parliament had need be expressed. I see differences even amongst those that were at the debate. How shall we know the meaning that were not present; nay, how shall those that come after us ?
It may be, we may be dissolved upon this very question. And it is said we have no provision for another Parliament. I am not of that opinion, while the Act of 16 Car. for a triennial Parliament (fn. 5) is of force. Parliaments will be called of course.
I doubt not but his Highness, when he rightly considers it, will regard his oath, (fn. 6) He is a conscientious person, and we may bless God we have such an one. Long may he live to keep us in settlement, and I am confident he will do all he can in order to safety and settlement.
He concluded his motion for a Grand Committee.
Mr. Thistlethwaite. You will never come to an end, if every gentleman take liberty to launch into the whole Petition and Advice, which cannot be altered but by consent of the three estates. I would have gentlemen speak to the merit. I shall speak to it.
Sir Arthur Haslerigge took him down, and said he spoke against the Orders of the House, for no man ought to speak to alteration of the question.
Mr. Speaker. The gentleman was not properly taken down; for any man may speak to the alteration of the ques tion; and he may speak to the Orders of the House, and then speak to the question, if he have not spoke before.
Mr. Bodurda. The debate upon the appellation is properly proceeded upon. I move you call them by the old name.
Mr. Thistletœaite. You have sate fourteen days, and if you launch into this debate, you will never come to a question. There are two rocks in this debate which you may run upon.
1. The excluding of the old peerage, which have right and are a considerable party; property we ought to be tender in.
2. If you admit the title, you admit a negative voice, which the liberties of the people do claim, as their right. I shall offer an expedient, that you give them this compliment, that you will join with their Lordships. This does not constitute a House of Lords. There is need of a day of humiliation, if it be but for the sad division amongst people that fear God. Then debate the whole in a Grand Committee.
Mr. Nathaniel Bacon. I hope you will not refer the sense of an Act of Parliament to the determination of a Committee. Nothing can do less than a Parliament, in order to the declaration of the sense of this law. It can be determined nowhere else.
Mr. Scot. It can be understood nowhere else, what was your sense, but in a Committee. Nothing so ordinary as a Grand Committee to argue this House into a sense, not to determine. The learned gentleman (fn. 7) told you the necessity of a Grand Committee, for which I shall honour him.
We have a saying in philosophy, calix perforatus, non est calix; a cap with a hole in it is not a cap, because it serves not for a cap. I can be very well content to trust God with the government of the nation.
I have been turned out of two Houses, and kept out of one. (fn. 8) I say so, because my interest is wrapped up in the common safety. I spoke my mind but freely, the second man, (fn. 9) because, if we must have fetters, better misery soon than— (fn. 10).
I think it is not improperly moved you, to have a Grand Committee. It is fit we should satisfy one another by reason. I am not of that gentleman's opinion (Mr. Bodurda, inuendo) that said, let this be the question. I will not trouble you with the reasons.
Mr. Waller moved for the necessity of a curb in the mouth, (fn. 11) and was jerked for his curb by a gentleman that spoke presently after.
Mr. Parley. Tertio Curoli Grand Committees were found very useful in the asserting the rights of the people in a petition of this nature; and we got not a foot of ground but by this. (fn. 12)
Colonel Mathews. If we had debated this in a Grand Committee, we had not had the debate about the sense of it. You hear what success, Tertio Caroli, they had by a Grand Committee.
Mr. Francis Bacon moved against a Grand Committee.
Mr. Speaker. All that is moved is only for a Grand Committee as to this purpose.
Mr. Weaver. In. 1654, upon the Instrument of Government, after you had spent two days upon the merit, you went into a. Grand Committee; where much of the bottom of the business was found out. (fn. 13)
Mr. Treoor. A prudent submission to the authority established, is better than to go the steps propounded, in a Grand Committee.
Mr. Bodurda. The plain dealing of a great many gentlemen that have spoken to this point, has given me much matter to speak upon.
They question a negative voice and a power co-ordinate with you. I understand not the matter of this debate to be, what they shall be, but what they are; not what to make them. I shall give you my reason why they are so; not by creation, but by revival. It is not this House that made them Lords, but they grew up. If this House created them, then this House may uncreate them, and the next question will be about his Highnesses creation.
The Petition and Advice is a principle and not to be disputed. We are but one estate. There are other two, with, out which you cannot alter this principle.
The persons and number and powers are restrained. Otherwise I should have been of opinion that all might have come in, as well enemies as others, but for the restriction of the qualifications.
All these restrictions were provided against the encroachment of the other House upon the Commons: so there is a clear revival. And, if they be not sufficiently restrained, they will concur with you, to make any thing better.
It is by revival. I shall give the authority of that Parliament that took them away. (fn. 14) By a declaration of the 8th of February, 1648, they say that they will maintain the fundamental laws without a House of Lords: (fn. 15) so that, under favour, this is a revival of a fundamental, (fn. 16) save only the moss that was gathered.
If I go backward or forward, I shall follow very worthy gentlemen that have done so. I shall not debate the negative. He that will not allow a negative to a majority in this House, because they may be corrupt, will not sure admit a negative out of doors.
I do not understand that argument, because you do not say it, therefore it is not intended. You do not say that they should have an usher of the black rod, and the like. You say that that in all things according to the laws they shall do.
I hope his Highness has made that choice that they have interest for that end. If not, it were well that those worthy gentlemen that have estates, and may sit there, would go thither. (fn. 17)
I do not understand what the gentleman means, when he says we draw all the blood upon us. (fn. 18) I remember not one drop of blood spilt either in taking away the House of Lords or a Commonwealth. (fn. 19)
The Parliament, after the vote of non-addresses, did declare for a House of Lords. (fn. 20) There is no argument but— (fn. 21) in the declaration for a Commonwealth. I have often read that declaration and laid it to heart, though I have not read it these two years.
I would beseech those worthy gentlemen to consider what will be the consequence, if we come not to this settlement. Before this, your purses, your persons were disposed on, you know how, by laws made without doors. (fn. 22)
It was told you, there is no provision for a future Parliament. (fn. 23) His Highness has told you he will receive no addresses singly. (fn. 24) Here is a confession to be provided. (fn. 25) What will become of your liberties, laws, religion, &c.; and the sword must take place.
I never took the engagement. Those that did, I hope do not look upon themselves under any obligation by that engagement (fn. 26)
You must give them some name. "The other House," is an Individium vagum. You must call them a House, of men, or women, or something that have two legs. Every being in the world must either be a genus, a species, or an individual of a species. I hope you will not admit them an individual of a species. They must be a species: no House of Commons, they must be somewhat else.
Five things hinder the success of Parliament:
1. When the chief magistrate is at variance with his Parliament.
2. The difference in the other House, between the great Lords. They study unity. I hope that will be no obstruction.
3. The difference between the two Houses. Then, if so, whether will you adhere to that counsel that would divide or unite?
4. The difference in this House itself. If the vitals were preserved, I should not differ for the rest.
5. When things were not prepared against their sitting.
Here is a foundation, the Petition and Advice. More is done thereby, than has been done these sixty years for the liberty and privileges of the people. There has not been so free a Parliament these sixteen years. (fn. 27)
Sir Anthony Ashley Cooper. If it be not your pleasure to go to a Grand Committee, I shall offer you my opinion.
I am not of their opinion that say there is nothing in the name, and that, if you could get over that, the fast would not stick: but better abstain from that, than the people suffer. You are now upon the brink and border of settlement, and if you go further, it may be, you cannot stand.
There is nothing but a compliment to call a man Lord; but if one call himself Lord of my manor, I shall be loth to give him the title, lest he claim the manor.
The gentlemen of the long robe will tell you there is much in names. The word King, they know, carries all. Words are the keys of the cabinets of things. Let us first take the people's jewels out, before you part with that cabinet. If you part with all first, when you come to abatement, it is a question how you will redeem them.
It was told you, by a learned gentleman, that the writ makes them no more than the Instrument makes them, for the Instrument makes them not Peers for life, as the writ does not. It is very clear. We are told it revives the old Lords' House. I would fain understand where the words of revival lie. The gentlemen of the long robe say nothing of a revival.
2. There must be a way of address. I see no such necessity by the last Instrument. You passed laws without the Peers' consent, after so many days. (fn. 28) The negative voice was denied the King. You know it was. Thus laws passed without the King's concurrence. (fn. 29)
Consider, let us not lay foundations that we may repent. They must be extant for the future.
Sir Arthur, Colonel Shapcott, Colonel Birch. (fn. 30)
Major Morgan. A Grand Committee has been observed to be destructive to a business, or dilatory: to lay it aside by a side wind, rather than to prosecute it with vigour. It is not so fit at present. We have been in the nature of a Grand Committee already. Many have multiplied their speeches; and you may give that liberty.
Mr. Turner. I come here with a spirit not to dispute what is settled, and this is the foot upon which all depends. Explanations are necessary. I find not that it had the solemnity of other Bills. I do own it, notwithstanding. You were forced to explain before, and may not we, upon better counsel, explain, as in Articuli super Chartas. (fn. 31) Never more need of a Grand Committee; but why may not we give them the appellation of Lords and Gentlemen.
Colonel Mildmay, Mr. Vowell, Sir Arthur, and Colonel Shapcott. (fn. 31)
Mr. Rennell moved for some previous votes.
Mr. Drake moved against a Grand Committee, and to put the first question.
It was moved that the question be, whether the question shall be put for a Grand Committee, and put accordingly.
Mr. Speaker declared for the Noes.
Sir Arthur Haslerigge and Mr. Fincent for the Yeas.
The House was divided. The Noes went out.
Yeas 86. Mr. Barrington and Mr. Lucy, Tellers.
Noes 86. Mr. Waller and Mr. Inglesby, Tellers.
Mr: Speaker was going to declare.
Mr. Fagg. I move to the orders of the House. When the question was put, I and another gentleman came in. I shall name him if you please. It was Colonel Grosvenor.
Colonel Grosvenor stood up, and said, he came in before the question was put.
Mr. Fagg said, he thought the negative was put; and it bred a great debate.
Mr. Bodurda. One gentleman that was upon a double return gave his affirmative in this case. I see bis name upon the door. I shall name him. It is Mr. Heely. (fn. 32)
Colonel Shapcott said he was mistaken; for Mr. Heely did not sit upon a double return; and it was waved.
Mr. Fagg was called on again, and did affirm that the negative was put when they two came in together.
Colonel Grosvenor affirmed, that he was here before the negative was put.
Mr. Butler stood up to matter of fact, and said those two gentlemen were at the fire-side when tbe first and second negative was put; and he came to the door, and went back, and was too late; and yet he was before there.
Colonel Grosvenor affirmed, upon his honour, that he was present at the first negative.
Mr. Butler said he was not present.
Mr. Gewen moved, that all that were in the Committee Chamber might come in after the question, and give their vote.
Mr. Robinson cited a case where, in the Long Parliament, two persons, viz. Sir Philip Stapleton and Mr. Denzil Holies, withdrew upon a question about a business from the Lords' House about a Countess; and they were observed to withdraw, and commanded to give their votes.
Mr. Speaker said it was well moved, and he remembered the case; he was present.
Mr. Doddridge. I move that the question be, if Mr. Fagg must give his vote.
After a long debate, Mr. Fagg was called to declare, and he said he was an Yea; and so declared by Mr. Speaker.
The main question being put,
Mr. Speaker declared for the Noes.
Sir Arthur Haslerigge for the Yeas.
Yeas 87. Sir Anthony. Ashley Cooper and Sir John Thorowgood, Tellers.
Noes 93. Mr. Trevor and Colonel Grosvenor, Tellers.
So it passed in the negative.
Mr. Speaker acquainted the House that there were two judges at the door from the Lords.
Mr. Weaver. I move that you receive no more messages till you be over this rock, lest you fall upon another rock.
Sir Arthur Haslerigge. I move against calling them in. This look's like a House of Lords. I tremble to think of wardships (fn. 33) and slavery. I am against it; and I could speak till four o'clock. If I had been of the other House, I should not have advised to have sent another message, till you had resolved in this. I can suffer to be torn in pieces, and to have ropes tied to me. I should endure that; but to betray the liberties of the people of England, I cannot. Having spoke my conscience, I will say no more.
Colonel Cox. When you would have had a King, I was a negative, because you were not a full and a free House; but now I should be an affirmative. But as to this question, till you declare them Lords I cannot give my consent that they shall be called in by that title. I move them as another House, but not as a House of Lords.
Mr. Scot moved against calling them in, till the other question be determined.
Mr. Robinson. If you now call them in, you admit another House of Lords, and consequently three houses.
I am sorry that we must be put to send to one another. I liked their society very well. They did us good service here. I am sorry to find you upon this debate. Jurisdictions debated in the House, I have always observed to be mischievous.
Better to leave the people to Providence than to deliver them up as to their liberties to a dear negative in all things. (fn. 34) The message may well keep cold.
You cannot interrogate the judges in this House, whatever the Serjeant may privately ask them. They can say nothing but what is delivered to them; and if you should ask them they would not answer you.
Mr. Hoskins. I move to decide it by a question, and act accordingly, that the messengers be called in.
The message was, to join with them in an address to his Highness, for a proclamation to issue out from his Highness, with the concurrence of the two Houses of Parliament, for banishing all papists and delinquents twenty miles from London. (fn. 37)
Sir Arthur Haslerigge. You see where we are. I trembled to hear this message. The first thing they offer, (fn. 38) is to invade the liberties of the free-born people of England, which are inherently in this House. Their message is to banish men, which may light upon any of us. I beseech you, let us not hear of such a message.
Mr. Pedley. I move that you put off this, till you come to some resolution in the other debate.
Mr. Trevor. I move that you return the same message as before; there being the same reason, and certainly no danger in it.
Mr. Turner. This message varied from the other. They did not call themselves Lords.
Mr. Robinson. We shall admit them by piece-meal till we cannot go back. Admit two or three of those messages, and admit all.
I wonder why we must be so hasty in returning an answer. If we be thus ready, we shall scarce be a minute without a message, and so, by degrees, grant them that is desired before we come to any determination.
It is not long since they got the title of Lords. Anciently, all were upon one footing of account, and they are but at most created by you.
They are persons of as much desert as any in the nation, I speak it without flattery; but their title and power I can. not admit. I would have this originally from yourselves.
Though they have been our enemies, (the Cavaliers, I mean, it is known I am not suspected to be a friend of theirs (fn. 39) ) yet we being intrusted with their liberties amongst others, let us not betray them. It may be our cases by this rule. It is the undoubted right of the House to have judgment of the people's purses, persons, privileges, and liberties. We are sworn to maintain them, and if we part with this we part with all.
My motion is, that you would not return any answer at all at this time. It may very well keep cold. The judges will take no harm by their attendance; for when you rise they will be discharged, and may come again to-morrow.
Mr. Scot. I move to enter a salvo, that it shall not prejudice you; or otherwise, return an answer to them as to "the other House."
It is not enough that they christen themselves, but they christen you, that you are Commons. I am not ashamed of the title, it being the greatest honour under heaven to serve the people in the meanest capacity in this House; all power being originally in the people. I observed this was used as an argument the other day, that you had received a message from them by that title. He that deceives me once, it is my fault if he deceive me twice. Modesty (it is Terfullian) may bring a man to misery. The Greeks were destroyed, many of them, because they could not say no. They are, at best, but originally from you.
Mr. Hungerford. I move, as they have called themselves Lords, that you own them by the name of the " other House;" and let that be your message.
Sir Arthur Haslerigge. We have wise men to deal with, else they had not been called to sit there, and what is moved you for addition to the message, " other House," you may add it.
Mr. Attorney-General. I move that you add, the " other House."
Mr. Trevor and Mr. Bodurda moved against the addition of the words.
Colonel Lister moved for no answer at all to be returned, till to-morrow.
The question being put for adding these words, " to the other House."
Mr. Speaker declared for the Yeas.
Mr. Trevor for the Noes; but was afterwards satisfied; so it was
Resolved, that the words be added accordingly.
The judges were called in again, and had this answer: That this House would send an answer to the other House by messengers of their own.
The House have adjourned the debate about the appella. tion of the other House till to-morrow at nine, and did rise at three.
In the Exchequer Chamber, sat the Committee of Privileges, Colonel Chadwick in the Chair.
In the Court of Wards, the Committee upon Ministers' Maintenance, (fn. 40) Mr. Scot in the Chair.
In the Speaker's Chamber, the Committee for Huntingdon's Uniting Parishes. Mr. Pedley in the Chair.