The Journals of All the Parliaments During the Reign of Queen Elizabeth. Originally published by Irish University Press, Shannon, Ire, 1682.
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THE JOURNAL OF THE House of COMMONS.
A Journal of the House of Commons in the Session of Parliament holden at Westminster, Anno 23 Reginæ Eliz. Anno Domini 1580. which began there (after many Prorogations of the same) on Monday the 16th Day of January, and then and there continued until it was first Prorogued on Saturday the 18th Day of March, and was lastly Dissolved (after sixteen other Prorogations) on Friday the 19th Day of April, Anno 25to Reginæ ejusdem, Anno Domini 1583.
This Session in Anno 23 Reginæ Eliz. Anno Domini 1580. maketh but one and the same Parliament with that in Anno 14 Reginæ Eliz. Anno Domini 1572. which was the first Session of it, and with that in Anno 18 Eliz. Reginæ Anno Domini 1575. which was the middle and second Session of the same: so that this present Assembly of the Peers and Commons of the Realm in this their great Councel, was but the third and last Session of it, being one and the same Parliament as aforesaid, continued still, each after other, without any Dissolution, near upon the space of twelve years by fourscore several Prorogations, or thereabouts, viz. from Thursday the 8th day of May in the fourteenth year of the Queen, on which said Thursday it first began, until the Dissolution thereof on the 19th day of April, Anno 25 Reginæ Eliz. Anno Domini 1583. In this said third and last Session finally, besides many good Passages touching the Orders and Priviledges of the House, there fell out an unusual dispute in the same concerning the appointment of a publick Fast, which in the end occasioned her Majesties displeasure and inhibition thereof.
The Parliament began upon this present Monday the 16th day of this instant January, to which it had been last Prorogued; both the Lords and Commons did each of them Assemble and meet in their several Houses, as at any other ordinary time without pomp or solemnity, this being as hath been observed, no new Parliament, but the last Session of that Parliament which had been first begun on Thursday the 8th day of May in Anno 14 Reginæ Eliz. Anno Domini 1572. and continued by many several Prorogations and Adjournments unto this present Monday, at which day divers of the Knights of the Shires, Citizens of Cities, Burgesses of Burroughs, and Barons of the Ports did appear and sit down in the House of Commons; but the number of them was not great, partly by reason of sundry former Prorogations of the same Session made so near unto the days thereof appointed; and partly also for that many of the Knights, Citizens, Burgesses and Barons since the last former Sessions were changed, some by Death, and some by other occasions, and new returned in some of their places, and in some others none, which now could not sit in the House till they had first taken the Oath for acknowledging the Queens Highnesses Supremacy over all Estates within her Majesties Realms and Dominions; which as then was not done, neither could then be done because there was then no Lord Steward at all named or appointed for that purpose, according to the form of the Statute in that case made and provided.
And being so set, Sir Francis Knolles Knight Treasurer of her Majesties most honourable Houshold stood up, and putting the House in remembrance as well of the Death of Sir Robert Bell Kt, late Lord Chief Baron of her Highness Exchequer, their Speaker since the last Session, by reason whereof the House was then without a Speaker, and could not therefore proceed in any thing; as also of some course to be taken for procuring her Majesties Commandment to chuse another Speaker, he declared unto them that as it was well known by often experience and usage, that at the first Summons or beginning of a Parliament, the Order is in that case to sit still till the House be sent for to the Upper House there to receive her Highness Commandment to chuse a Speaker; so was it now uncertain what Order should be used when a Speaker dying after a former Session Prorogated, a new is to be chosen in another Session ensuing holden by such Prorogation, in which Case he said there were not many Precedents to his knowledge, albeit yet one within our Memory which was in the eighth year of her Majesties Reign, when Richard Onslow Esquire the Queens Majesties Sollicitor was chosen Speaker in that Session de an. 8 Reginæ Eliz. which made but one and the same Parliament with the former Session held in Anno 5 Reginæ ejusdem, in which Thomas Williams Esq; had been Speaker, and died before the said second Session held by Prorogation in the said eighth year of the Queen; he offered a Copy of that precedent, but because Mr Fulk Onslow the Clerk was present sitting as Clerk, and had there his Original Book of notes, out of which the said Copy was taken, he was Commanded to read it out of his Book which was to this purpose.
But in respect it is omitted both in the foul Copy which Fulk Onslow now Clerk of the House of Commons took concerning the Passages of this Session of Parliament, fol. 1. a. and also in the fair written or perfected Copy of the Journal of this said Session (out of both which this present Journal is collected and enlarged) fol. 106. b. therefore (it being a Precedent useful) I have supplied it out of the Original JournalBook of the Upper House in the Parliament de Annis 8, & 9 Reginæ Eliz. Anno Domini 1565. in manner and form following, viz.
That on Monday the 30th day of December in the eighth year of the Reign of Queen Elizabeth, a new Session of Parliament being holden by Prorogation at Westminster, and the Knights, Citizens and Burgesses according to their usual Order and Custom meeting thereupon in the House of Commons, did there find that Thomas Williams Esq; their late Speaker in the first Session of this Parliament holden in the fifth year of the said Queen Eliz. was dead, and that the said Commons falling by that means into Consultation what course was fittest to be taken in respect that until a new Speaker was chosen, no business could be Entred upon or expedited in the said House, did at length all resolve as the best course to send certain of the most eminent Personages, being Members of the said House, up unto the Lords to desire likewise their advice and assistance in whatsoever their Lordships in that Case should think fittest to be done. And thereupon their Lordships joining four Members of their House with four more of the House of Commons, did advise that with all humbleness and speed they should all jointly repair to her Majesty, and make intimation of their said Estate, and so further desire to know her pleasure therein: And her Majesty did accordingly most graciously on the next day, being Tuesday the first day of October, send her Commission under the Great Seal of England, directed unto the Lord Keeper, by which the said Knights, Citizens and Burgesses of the House of Commons were Authorized to Elect and chuse a new Speaker, which accordingly they did, and thereupon presented him being Richard Onslow Esquire the Queens Sollicitor, on the very next day following, being Wednesday the second day of October.
But notwithstanding this precedent, some were of opinion (although they did not utter it, because they supposed themselves not warranted to treat of any thing, much less of any dealing with the Upper House without a Speaker, or without her Majesties Commandment) that this was the only precedent that could be shewed in such manner of proceeding, and was but an innovation, and not warranted upon good grounds, but rather subject to inconvenience and peril. So first they thought it was a breach of Duty to the Queen, that we should enter into that or any other Consultation before her Majesties Pleasure known touching a Speaker.
Item there was no warrant to resolve us any thing, so that there was no person to take the Voices or moderate the Consultation.
Item those who should go on such Message, could have no good warrant to deliver it in the name of the House, when the House could treat of nothing.
Item it had some inconvenience of drawing a special Prerogative to those of the House that were of her Majesties Councel from the rest of the House.
Item it had greater peril of precedent to draw the Petitions of the House to her Majesty, to be done by mediation of the Upper House; and they thought it to stand much in duty and humility to the Queen, not to presume to make such Petition, or to make difference in proceeding upon a Parliament newly Summoned, and a Session of Parliament held by Prorogation as it is used upon new Summons, so to sit still in all humility, expecting that the House should be sent for to the Upper House, there to receive her Majesties Pleasure and Commandment to chuse a Speaker; which her Pleasure might either be delivered by the Lord Chancellor in her Majesties Presence, or in her absence by Commission, as in Cases of Prorogations and such like doings is used. And for that it might be doubted how her Majesty should have notice that the Speakers place was void: it was to be Answered, that the House it self judicially hath no notice but by relation of his Death as her Majesty hath. And her Majesty hath the more certain notice, for that her self had made Sir Robert Bell Lord Chief Baron, and so his place of Speaker void as some thought, although some others thought that the Chief Baron may be Speaker, and she had since his Death made a new Chief Baron, viz.
Nota, That this Argument doth very solidly and fully prove, that the Knights, Citizens and Burgesses of the House of Commons ought not at this time to have joined with the Upper House in Petitioning the Queen for liberty to chuse a new Speaker, in respect that her Majesty could not but take notice of it as well as themselves, and the rather at this present because she had first made Sir Robert Bell Knight their former Speaker Chief Baron of the Exchequer, by which many supposed his place of Speaker was void in the said Commons House, because he was to be called by Writ as a necessary attendant of the Upper House; and lastly, because her Majesty had now afterwards also upon his Death, made another Chief Baron in his room: by all which it appeared most plainly as is before urged, that her Majesty could not but know as well as themselves that the said place of Speaker was void.
But whether Mr Fulk Onslow the now Clerk of the House of Commons did conceive these reasons in his own mind, and so by communicating them unto others of the said House, and finding them to concur in the same opinion, did thereupon Enter them in the Journal-Book of this Parliament, or whether others of the House did first conceive it themselves, and utter it to him in private in the said House; yet certainly it having not been openly spoken in the House as appears by his own setting of it down, but privately muttered, it ought to have been Entred as a private opinion, and not as any part of the Journal, and to have been distinguished by being written in some other different hand, from that in which the rest of the Journal was set down or the like.
But yet notwithstanding all those foresaid reasons already set down, it was at last agreed by the greater number of the few Voices that the said Precedent should be followed which had before passed in the eighth year of her Highness Reign: And accordingly were appointed the said Mr Treasurer and Sir James Crofts Knight Comptroller of her Majesties most honourable Houshold, and Thomas Wilson Esquire one of her Highnesses Principal Secretaries with a convenient number of others of the House, to go to the Upper House to make Petition to the Lords for their Mediation to her Majesty for Licence to chuse a Speaker, the place being void first by the making of the said Sir Robert Bell to be Lord Chief Baron of the Exchequer, and lastly by his Death: which Message being by the said persons executed accordingly, and they brought Answer again to the House from the Lords, that their Lordships had appointed all the Lords of the Privy-Council, with the Marquess of Winchester, the Earl of Arundell, and the Bishop of London, to make that Suit to her Majesty, and required to have four of this House being of her Majesties Privy-Council to join therein with them, according to the said Precedent: whereupon forasmuch as it appeared to this House that the Lords in appointing their number, had varied from the said Precedent, it was moved that likewise the number appointed by this House might also be altered, that in precedent it might remain a thing Arbitratory to the House, and that so five of this House being of the PrivyCouncil, should be added to the Lords, and the rather because it was then affirmed of some, that the cause why only four of the Council being of this House were appointed in the said eighth year, was for that the Lords number was then but four, and for that also there were at that time but four of the Council in this House. The now Lord Treasurer then being the one only Principal Secretary to her Majesty; but at last the said Precedent was precisely urged and followed, and the said Mr Treasurer, Mr Comptroller, and Sir Francis Walsingham Knight, one of her Majesties two Principal Secretaries, and Sir Walter Mildmay Knight Chancellor of her Highness Court of Exchequer, were appointed by this House to join with the said Lords in the said Suit to her Majesty, and Order was then also given, that this House should also daily assemble to continue the Session and attend the Answer of her Highnesses Pleasure therein.
On Tuesday the 17th day of January, some number of this House Assembled this day to attend for the causes aforesaid.
On Wednesday the 18th day of January, the Right Honourable the Earl of Lincoln Lord Steward of the Queens Majesties most honourable Houshold came into this House, and before him divers Knights, Citizens and Burgesses returned into this House, did openly receive and pronounce the Oath according to the form of the Statute in that case made and provided; and he did also then and there signify and declare the right Honourable Mr Treasurer, Mr Comptroller, Mr Secretary Wilson and Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer to be his Deputies during this Session of Parliament, that before them or any of them, all such persons as should, during this Session, be returned to be of this House, might openly receive and pronounce the said Oath accordingly, which Deputation they did then execute.
This matter of the Lord Stewards Ministring the Oath of Supremacy unto such Members of the House of Commons, as were newly Elected and returned to this new Session of Parliament, being thus transcribed out of the Original Journal-Book of the House of Commons now follows the whole manner of the proceeding of her Majesty in giving Authority by her Commission under the Great Seal unto the House of Commons, to Elect a new Speaker, and of their receiving the said Authority, out of the Original Journal-Book of the House of Lords, in respect that the same is but shortly and imperfectly set down in the Original Journal-Book of the said House of Commons.
This foresaid Wednesday Morning the Knights, Citizens and Burgesses of the House of Commons (being mindful of the great business of the Election of a new Speaker, which they had treated of on Monday foregoing being the 16th day of this instant January) repaired to the Upper House commonly called the Parliament Chamber, where being Assembled with the Lords, those noble Personages and others who had been appointed to repair unto the Queen on Monday foregoing, signified her Majesties Pleasure unto all the Lords and Commons there present concerning the Choice of a new Speaker by the Members of the House of Commons. And thereupon the Lord Chancellor shewed forth a Commission under the Broad Seal of England, which he Commanded the Clerk openly to read; the the tenor whereof was as followeth.
ELizabeth, &c. To our Right Trusty and Right well Beloved Counsellor Sir Thomas Bromley Knight, Lord Chancellor of England, Greeting. Whereas in the beginning of this our present Parliament holden at Westminster the eighth day of May in the fourteenth year of our Reign, the Knights, Citizens and Burgesses being Assembled in the same Parliament were Commanded by us to go to their accustomed place, and there to chuse to themselves one to be their Speaker according to the accustomed manner: Whereupon the same Knights, Citizens and Burgesses did Elect and Chuse one Robert Bell Esq; afterwards Knight, and Chief Baron of our Exchequer now deceased to be their Speaker, and the same their Election did afterwards certifie unto us; which Election we did allow and ratifie: since which time this our present Parliament hath been continued by divers Prorogations until the 8th day of February in the eighteenth year of our Reign, at which time the said Parliament was holden and continued from the said 8th day of February until the 15th day of March then next following, from which time also the said Parliament hath continued by divers and sundry Prorogations until the 16th day of January in this present twenty third year of our Reign. At which day the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and also the said Knights, Citizens and Burgesses have declared unto us that the said Robert Bell since the last Session of this present Parliament is dead, and thereupon have made their humble Suit and Petition to us, that they might have Licence and Commandment from us to proceed to Elect amongst themselves one other to be their Speaker for the rest of this present Parliament yet to come. Wherefore we having certain and perfect knowledge that the said Robert Bell is dead as they have alledged, and considering their humble Petition and Request is very meet and necessary to be granted, have appointed and Constituted you, and by the these Presents we do Will, Command, Constitute and Appoint you for us and in our Name to Call the said Knights, Citizens and Burgesses before you and other the Lords Spiritual and Temporal Assembled in this our present Parliament in the Higher House of our Parliament at Westminster, and there present, for us and in our Name to Will and Command the said Knights, Citizens and Burgesses to resort to their accustomed place, and there to Elect and Chuse amongst themselves one sufficient and able Person to be their Speaker for the rest of this present Parliament yet to come; and after they have once made their Election, that then three or four of them for and in all their names shall signifie the same unto us; and thereupon we will further signifie our Pleasure unto them what day and time they shall present the Person Elected before us, as heretofore hath been in like Cases accustomed to be done. Wherefore our Will and Pleasure is, that you do diligently attend about doing of the premises, and execute the same with effect. In Witness whereof we have caused these our Letters Patents to be Sealed with our Great Seal. Witness our Self at Westminster the 16th day of January in the twenty third Year of our Reign.
Thus far out of the Original Journal-Book of the Upper House; now follows the continuance of this days Passages, as also of the residue of the matters handled in the House of Commons during this Session of Parliament, out of the Original Journal-Book of the same House.
At the return of such Members of the House of Commons into their own House as had been present in the Upper House during the time the recited Commission was in reading (for many of the House of Commons conceiving that their sending for to the Upper House aforesaid, being only by their own Serjeant whom they had sent up to the Lords to see if the Lord Chancellor and the rest of their Lordships were come thither or no, was no orderly giving them notice of their Lordships desires in that behalf according to former usage, in respect that the said Commons are to be sent for by ..........) amongst the said Members as aforesaid, who had been so present in the said Upper House, Sir Francis Knolles Knight Treasurer of her Majesties Household, did at his return declare, that for Answer to the Suit her Majesties Commission was read to license and Command the Commons to Chuse a Speaker, and that four of this House being of the Privy-Council should make report of the Election to her Majesty, that her Highness might thereupon signifie her further Pleasure for appointing the day for presenting of him.
Mr Treasurer further declared unto the House before their proceeding to Election, that he and others had just now seen in the Upper House one that is a Member of this House, to wit Mr John Popham, her Majesties Sollicitor General, being one of the Citizens for Bristol, and therefore made a Motion that some of this House might be sent to their Lordships with request that the said Mr Popham being a Member of this House might forthwith be remanded and restored to this House again, which some thought not needful to be done before the Election, and others again denying that he or any other could be Chosen Speaker except he were present himself. The Clerk was Commanded to read the said Precedent again of chusing Mr Onslow in the said eighth year of her Majesties Reign (which said Precedent see on Monday the 16th day of this instant foregoing) and thereupon that course being agreed upon to be followed, the said Mr Treasurer and others were sent up to the Lords to demand the restitution of the said Mr Popham, and brought Answer again that their Lordships had resolved he should be sent down, the rather because he was a Member of this House, and this House possessed of him before he was Sollicitor, or had any place of Attendance in the Upper House. Upon relation whereof a Motion was presently made, that it was not meet or convenient to chuse a Speaker by persons that were not of the House, and withal it was thought of some that divers persons being newly returned in the places of others yet living, were not, or ought not to be accounted Members of this House. Whereupon to avoid length of Argument and the impediment of the Election, the said Mr Treasurer by the Assent of the House pronounced an Admonition, that all such as were newly returned in the places of others yet living should forbear to repair to the House till their case were further considered. Then immediately Mr Anderson the Queens Serjeant at Law, and Sir Gilbert Gerard Knight her Highness Attorney General, brought from the Lords the said Mr Popham her Majesties Sollicitor General, one of the Citizens for the City of Bristol, and restored him to this House as a Member of the same, and so departed. And then was a Motion made by Mr Lewkenor for Prayer to be used before the Election, that it might please God both in that and in the residue of the Proceedings of this House, to direct them with his Holy Spirit; and a form of Prayer was then read to the House by the Clerk. And then afterwards the House proceeding to the Election of a Speaker, the said Mr Treasurer first speaking did for his own part name and commend the said Mr Popham, alledging many good reasons and causes moving him thereunto, but still leaving nevertheless liberty without prejudice to the residue of the House to name whom they would or thought good. And thereupon the whole House with full consent of Voices agreed upon the chusing of the said Mr Popham; who standing up and much disabling himself in dutiful and reverend wise, and alledging for himself many reasonable causes and excuses, besought them humbly to proceed to a new Election, whereof the House did not allow; and so then was he forthwith by the said Mr Treasurer and Mr Comptroller brought up and placed in the Chair, and order thereupon given that the House should the next day Assemble together, both to understand her Majesties Pleasure for presenting of the Speaker, and also to determine of the case of the said persons newly returned into this House in the places of others yet living.
On Thursday the 19th day of January the House again Assembled, the Speaker Elect sitting in the Chair.
The matter began to be debated touching the said Burgesses, of whom question was made the day before; and the Case was opened by Mr Norton a Citizen of London to the effect following, viz.
That there be Members of this House absent in her Majesties Service, as in Embassage, or in her affairs in Ireland, in whose place new be returned.
Item, some persons be sick of durable Diseases, as Agues, &c. and new be returned in their places.
Item, one Mr Flowerden was the last Session Burgess for Castle-Rising in Norfolk, and in the Vacation was sick: Upon suggestion of which sickness a Writ went to chuse a new. Whereupon Sir William Drewry is Chosen and returned for Castle-Rising, who now appeareth, and Mr Flowerden also. In the same Vacation one Beamond a Citizen for Norwich is sick of the Gout, upon suggestion whereof a Writ went out to chuse a new for Norwich; Mr. Flowerden is chosen, returned and newly sworn for Norwich. Vide March 18th Saturday postea.
The Questions are whether such as be returned in places of persons sick, or of persons absent in the Queens Service, be Burgesses, and the old discharged. Mr Norton thought the old Burgesses remained, and that the said causes of sickness and service are good excuses for their absence, but no causes to remove them and to chuse new. And for this he alledged divers Precedents, as of Doctor Dale Embassador in France, and of Sir Henry Sidney Deputy of Wales, who having been formerly both of them Members of the House of Commons, and absent by reason of both their said Imployments, yet when their case was once made known unto the House and there questioned, they were still retained as Members of the said House, and no new chosen, or admitted. But however although such absent Members by reason of sickness or Foreign Imployment might be removed, yet that ought not to be done upon a suggestion in the Chancery, but by the Judgment of the House of Commons upon information thereof.
Mr Serjeant Flowerden, Mr Robert Snagg, Mr Seintpoole, and Mr Serjeant Fleetwood Comptroller argued to the contrary, and said, that in all these cases new are to be chosen, and the old discharged. And that it needeth not to have discharge by the Judgment of the House, but it sufficeth to make suggestion in the Chancery, and to procure a Writ thereupon for a new Election. And to question this was to discredit the Lord Chancellor and to scandalize the Judicial Proceedings of that Court.
And it was further alledged, that not only in these before-recited Cases, but also in all others where any new Elections are to be made, if the Lord Chancellor send out a Writ upon any suggestion to chuse a new Burgess in the place of an old, whether the cause be sufficient or non-sufficient to remove the old, or whether the suggestion be true or false, yet if a new be returned the House of Commons is to accept the Burgess and to allow the return, and the old Burgess remaineth discharged until the matter be further cleared upon the Examination and Judgment of the said House.
And according to these opinions the new Burgesses Elected and returned in places of men living, were received and allowed in the said House; Mr Flowerden keeping his place for Norwich, Sir William Drewry for Castle-Riseing, Mr Richard Herbert in place of Mr Pugh for Montgomery, and so the like of the rest that were new Elected. Vide the contrary resolved March the 18th postea.
Nota, That all this was done after the Election of John Popham Esquire the Queens Sollicitor for Prolocutor or Speaker, but before his Presentation to the Queen, or her Majesties allowance of him. The agitation of which question was doubtless either privately muttered in the House, or if it were disputed openly it was suddenly and unwarrantably done, in respect that the House of Commons have no power to determine or resolve of any thing after the Election of the Speaker, till he be presented and allowed, as may easily be Collected by all Precedents both of latter and former times. Neither did this opinion of the House thus irregularly given take any great effect, because the contrary was resolved March 18 postea.
In the mean time of those foregoing Arguments and Disputations in the House, it was signified unto the said House that her Majesties Pleasure was, that the Speaker should be presented unto her Highness on the next day following at two of the Clock in the Afternoon in the Upper House.
On Friday the 20th day of January the House Assembled together, and about two of the Clock in the Afternoon they had notice that the Queen with the Lords Spiritual and Temporal were all set in the Upper House. Whereupon the Knights, Citizens and Burgesses hasted thither with Mr Popham their Speaker, and being let in as many as conveniently could, and the said Speaker brought up to the Bar at the lower end of the said House by two of the most eminent Personages of the House of Commons, he there made his humble excuse, and alledged his insufficience for discharge of his place in such manner and form as in like case is usually accustomed.
But notwithstanding his said excuse her Majesty by the Lord Chancellor signified her Allowance of him, for which the said Speaker rendred his humble thanks, and Petitioning in the name of the House of Commons for Liberty of Speech, for free access to her Majesty, and for freedom from Arrests, according to the usual form, the Lord Chancellor by the Queens Commandment made him a gracious Answer; After which ended the Knights, Citizens and Burgesses with their said Speaker returned unto their own House.
And being come thither and the Speaker set in his Chair, one Bill according to the usual form was read, which was for the assurance of Purchasers against incumbrances.
On Saturday the 21th day of January the Litany being read by the Clerk, and the old Prayer, that was used in former Sessions, read also by the Speaker, Mr Speaker made a short Oration to the House, partly touching himself and partly touching them. For his own part acknowledging his infirmities and praying both their patience and assistance; and for them he advised them to use reverent and discreet Speeches, to leave curiosity of form, and to speak to the matter: and for that the Parliament was likely to be very short, willed them further to forbear speaking to Bills at the first reading, and not to spend too much time in unnecessary Motions or superfluous Arguments. And further desired them that they would see their Servants, Pages and Lackies attending on them kept in good order.
Which ended, a Motion was made that Mr Speaker and the residue of the House of the better sort of Calling, would always at the rising of the House depart and come forth in comely and civil sort, for the reverence of the House in turning about with a low Courtesie, like as they do make at their coming into the House, and not so unseemly and rudely to thrust and throng out as of late time hath been disorderly used; which Motion made by Sir James Croft Knight Comptroller of her Majesties Houshold, was very well liked of and allowed of all this House.
The Bill for reformation of disorders of the Clerk of the Market and his Deputies was read the first time.
Mr Paul Wentworth made a Motion for a publick Fast and daily Preaching; the Fast to be appointed upon some one certain day, but the Preaching to be every Morning at seven of the Clock before the House did sit; that so they beginning their proceeding with the Service and Worship of God, he might the better bless them in all their Consultations and Actions.
Sir Francis Knolles Treasurer of the Queens Houshold spake against this Motion, Mr Thomas Cromwell spake for it, Mr Alford against it, Mr Cooke for it, Mr Secretary Wilson for it, Mr Serjeant Flowerden for it; and Mr Norton shewed Precedents that there had been Fasts in London by Order only from the Council (by which it seemeth he intended to infer that a Parliament might much rather appoint it.)
Hereupon the House being divided, and many Arguments being spent pro & con, at length the said matter in question was put to Voices, and the better side had the greater number; for there were a hundred and fifteen Voices for it, and but a hundred against it; and so it was Ordered, that as many of the House of Commons as convenient could, should on the Sunday seven-night after, being the 29th day of this instant January, Assemble and meet together in the Temple Church there to hear Preaching and join in Prayer together with Humiliation and Fasting for the assistance of Gods Spirit in all their Consultations during this Parliament, and for the Preservation of the Queens Majesty and her Realms; and that the Preachers who should perform the work and service of that day, might be appointed by such of her Majesties Council as were of the House, to the intent that they may be discreet persons and keep convenient proportion of time, without intermedling with matter of innovation or unquietness.
This day also it was Ordered that the House should be called on Wednesday next being the 25th day of this instant January in the Afternoon, that so it might appear who did diligently intend the business of the House, and who did negligently absent themselves.
Mr Broughton also this Forenoon made a Motion to know the mind of the House touching his Companion or Fellow Burgess, who now stood indicted of Felony, whether he ought to remain of the House or to forbear coming, or that a new one should be Elected in his place. Whereupon after the matter had been a while agitated and disputed of in the House, it was adjudged, that he ought to remain of the House till he were Convicted: for it may be any mans case who is guiltless to be accused, and thereupon indicted of Felony or a like Crime.
After which Judgment given by the House, Mr Norton did further inform them, that the Lord Chancellor willed him to signisie unto the House that this matter had been moved to him, and that a new Writ had been desired to him for the Election of another in the place of the said Burgess; but that his Lordship had refused to yield thereunto, and had further alledged that he ought first to be removed by the Judgment of the House; and that thereupon the House signifying so much to his Lordship, he would thereupon grant a new Writ for a second Election to be made.
The Judgment of the Lord Chancellor, who was both Learned in the Laws, and had been an antient Parliament man, was much commended by the House, and the rather, because it so opportunely concurred at this time with the Judgment of the House. Which resolution seemeth cross to that former opinion before-given in the House on Thursday last past the 19th day of this instant January, viz. that new Burgesses being returned in the place of others living were to be allowed and received in the House.
But yet I conceive that these two opinions may well stand together; for here the Lord Chancellor was pleased not to grant a Writ for a new Election, but to stay the Judgment of the House, which was without all question the most just and safe way of Proceeding; whereas in those other before-recited Cases he had granted out Writs for new Elections upon meer suggestions; and then without all question the Burgesses returned upon those Writs are to be received into the House and must remain as Members thereof until they be again rejected by the Judgment of the House. So also it is if a Sheriff shall return one for a Knight of a Shire who was unduly or not at all Elected, yet he that is so returned remaineth a Member of the House until his said Election be declared void by the Judgment of the House. But why in the said former Case one Elected in a place of a Burgess sick, (upon suggestion doubtless that he could not recover) should be adjudged by the House to be well Elected, and returned notwithstanding that the former Burgess was present in the Parliament and had recovered his health, I cannot possibly guess. Vide March 18th postea.
January 22. Sunday.
On Monday the 23th day of January the House being Assembled did sit till eleven of the Clock without the Speaker, for that he was all that time at the Court; in which mean time the Serjeant of the House apprehended one William Hanney Servant to Anthony Kirle of the Middle-Temple Gent. sitting in this House, who being none of this House, and further Examined, confessed upon his Knees that he had sitten here this present day by the space of half an hour at the least, craving pardon and alledging that he knew not the Orders of this House, and was thereupon committed to the Serjeants Custody till further Order should be taken with him by this House.
Mr Speaker coming to the House after eleven of the Clock read the usual Prayer, omitting the Litany for the shortness of time, and declared unto the House that the time was then so far spent as leisure could not then well serve them to proceed unto the reading of any Bill, and therefore willed all the House then present to meet there again on the Morrow at eight of the Clock in the Forenoon: And also that every one of the House which were then present, should give notice thereof unto all such of the residue of this House then absent as they could in the mean time happen to see or meet with, to the end that all they might likewise attend in this House at the time aforesaid accordingly.
On Tuesday the 24th day of January, Three Bills of no great moment had each of them one reading; of which the last being the Bill that Actions upon the Case shall be brought in proper Counties was read the first time.
Mr Speaker declared himself for his own part to be very sorry for the error that happened here in this House upon Saturday last in resolving to have a publick Fast, and sheweth her Majesties great misliking of the proceeding of this House therein, declaring it to fall out in such sort as he before did fear it would do; and advising the House to a Submission in that behalf, further moved them to bestow their time and endeavour hereafter during this Session in matters proper and pertinent for this House to deal in, and to omit all supersluous and unnecessary Motions and Arguments, with all due regard and consideration to the Order of the House.
Mr Vice-Chamberlain declaring a Message from her Majesty to this whole House, by her Highness Commandment shewed unto them her great admiration of the rashness of this House in committing such an apparent contempt against her Majesties express Commandment very lately before delivered unto the whole House by the Lord Chancellor in her Highness name, as to attempt and put in Execution such an innovation as the same Fast without her Majesties Privity and Pleasure first known; blaming first the whole House and then Mr Speaker, and declaring her Majesties Protestation for the allowing of Fasting and Prayer, with the use and exercise thereof in her own Person; but reproving the undutiful proceeding of this House as against the duty of Subjects, did nevertheless very eloquently and amply set forth her Majesties most honourable and good acceptation of the Zeal, Duty and Fidelity of this whole House towards Religion, the Safety of her Highness Person, and the State of this Common-wealth (in respect whereof her Majesty hath so long continued this Parliament without Dissolution) declared further to the great joy and comfort of this whole House, that her Majesty nevertheless of her inestimable and Princely good Love and Disposition, and of her Highness most gracious Clemency construeth the said offence and contempt to be rash, unadvised and an inconsiderate Error of this House, proceeding of Zeal and not of the wilful and malicious intent of this House or of any Member of the same, imputing the cause thereof partly to her own lenity towards a Brother of that man which now made this Motion (Mr Wentworth) who in the last Session was by this House for just causes reprehended and committed, but by her Majesty graciously pardoned and restored again. And after many excellent Discourses and Dilatations of her Highness most honourable and loving care for the advancement of Religion, and the State wherein she had before signified her Prohibition to this House by the Lord Chancellor, shewed that her Highness hath already deeply consulted upon those matters in all due and needful respects, and prepared fit and apt courses to digest them, meet and ready to be delivered unto this House from her Highness by such direction as her Majesty thinketh most convenient. And so perswading this House to imploy the time about the necessary service of the Queens Majesty and of the Common-wealth, with due and grave regard to the antient Orders of this House, concludeth, that he thinketh it very meet that this whole House or some one of this House, by Warrant of the House, in the name of the said House, do make most humble submission unto her Majesty, acknowledging the said offence and contempt, and in most humble and dutiful wise to pray remission of the same at her Highness hands, with full purpose hereafter to forbear committing of the like offence.
Mr Comptroller followed him and spake to the same effect, but urged and enforced the fault of the House with much more violence.
MrNicholas St Leger spake next, and with a great deal of discretion and moderation extenuated the said offence of the House; urging first their great affection to her Majesty, the sincerity of their intention in that Motion of the Fast; Then the imperfections and sins to which not only private men but publick States are also subject, and therefore needed to be supported by Prayer and Humiliation; And then he urged the great fault and remissness of the Bishops who suffered that most necessary Duty of Fasting and Humiliation to grow even out of use in the Church; And lastly he concluded, that he trusted that both her Majesty and all her Subjects would be ready to express their true repentance to God in humbling themselves in Sack-Cloth and Ashes.
MrStPoole followed MrStLeger, but spake somewhat differing from him, aggravating the fault of the House, and urging Submission.
Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer spake next, and admonished the House of their duty which they did owe to so good and gracious a Prince as her Majesty hath expressed her self to be in all this long time of her Government, and therefore urged the House to Submission.
Mr Sackford one of the Masters of the Requests urged the same Submission, but withal he thought it very fitting and could wish it that Mr Vice-Chamberlain who had brought the Message from her Majesty of her displeasure, might also carry the Houses Submission back again unto her Highness.
Mr Flowerden spake next and shewed the sincerity of his intention in speaking for the Fast, when it was first moved; but now concluded, that it was most fitting for the House to make their Submission to her Majesty.
Mr Carleton stood up and offered to have spoken, but was interrupted by Mr Speaker and the House.
Then Mr Speaker asked the Question, whether Mr Vice-Chamberlain should carry the Submission of the House to her Majesty, and it was agreed by the consent of the whole House.
Mr Carleton offered again to speak, saying with some repetition, that what he had to move was for the liberty of the House; but the Speaker notwithstanding and the House (out of a tender care as it seemeth to give no further distast to her Majesty) did stay him.
On Wednesday the 25th day of January, the Bill for Children born in England of Fathers that were Aliens, not to be accounted or reputed as English, was read the second time.
Mr Cromwell now upon the second reading as the Order is, spake against the Bill, Mr Norton for it, with Motion also that Englishmen taking Oath to the Pope or Foreign Potentates beyond Sea, for Obedience in England, shall have no benefit as Englishmen.
Mr Broughton spake against the said Bill, Sir Francis Knolles Treasurer of her Majesties Houshold spake for it, and Mr Dalton spake against it. Whereupon the said Bill was after the foresaid second reading (according to the course and order in that case usual and accustomed) committed to Mr Treasurer aforesaid, Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, Doctor Dale one of the Masters of Requests, Mr Norton, Mr Aldrich, Mr Aldersey, Mr Dalton, Mr Fleetwood Recorder of London, and Mr Serjeant Fenner; who were appointed to meet on Friday the 27th day of January now next following at two of the Clock in the Afternoon in the Exchequer Chamber.
Mr Vice-Chamberlain brought Answer from her Majesty of her most gracious acceptation of the Submission, and of her Majesties Admonition and Confidence of their discreet proceeding; with one special note, that they do not misreport the cause of her misliking, which was not, for that they desired Fasting and Prayer, but for the manner in presuming to indict a form of publick Fast without Order and without her Privity, which was to intrude upon her Authority Ecclesiastical.
Sir Walter Mildmay spake next, and delivered a most Honourable, Grave, Wise and Honest Speech; which being not found either in the first Original draught of the Journal of the House of Commons taken by Fulk Onslow Esq; Clerk of the same, nor otherwise set down in one other fair transcribed Copy of the said Journal by the same Mr Onslow's direction then abstractedly and summarily taken; I have therefore caused it to be transcribed at large out of a Copy of the said Speech I had by me in manner and form following.
The principal cause of our Assembly here being to consult of matters that do concern the Realm, I have thought good with your patience to remember you of such things as for the weight and necessity of them I take to be worthy of your considerations. Wherein I mean to note unto you what I have conceived first of the present state we be in, next of the dangers we may justly be in doubt of, and lastly what provision ought to be made in time to prevent or resist them. These shewed as briefly as the matters will suffer, I leave them to your Judgments to proceed further as you shall find it expedient.
That our most Gracious Queen did at her first Entry loosen us from the Yoke of Rome, and did restore unto this Realm the most pure and holy Religion of the Gospel, which for a time was over-shadowed with Popery, is known of all the World, and felt of us to our singular Comforts. But from hence as from the Root hath sprung that implacable malice of the Pope and his Consederates against her, whereby they have and do seek not only to trouble, but if they could to bring the Realm again into a Thraldom; the rather for that they hold this as a firm and setled Opinion, that England is the only setled Monarchy that most doth maintain and countenance Religion, being the Chief Sanctuary for the afflicted Members of the Church that fly thither from the Tyranny of Rome, as men being in danger of Shipwrack do from a raging and tempestuous Sea to a calm and quiet Haven. This being so, what hath not the Pope assaied to annoy the Queen and her State, thereby as he thinketh to remove this great obstacle that standeth between him and the over-flowing of the World again with Popery? For the proof whereof these may suffice.
The Northern Rebellion stirred up by the Pope, and the quarrel for Popery.
The maintenance sithence of those Rebels and other Fugitives.
The publishing of a most impudent, blasphemous and malicious Bull against our most Rightful Queen.
The Invasion into Ireland by James Fitz Morrice, with the assistance of some English Rebels.
The raising of a dangerous Rebellion in Ireland by the Earl of Desmond and others, intending thereby to make a general Revolt of all the whole Realm.
The late Invasion of Strangers into Ireland, and their fortifying it.
The Pope turned thus the venom of his Curses and the Pens of his malicious Parasites into men of War and Weapons, to win that by Force, which otherwise he could not do. And though all these are said to be done by the Pope, and in his name, yet who seeth not that they be maintained under-hand by some Princes his Confederates? And if any man be in doubt of that, let him but note from whence the last Invasion into Ireland came, of what Country the Ships, and of what Nation the most part of the Souldiers were, and by direction of whose Ministers they received their Victual and Furniture.
For the Pope of himself at this present is far unable to make War upon any Prince of that Estate which her Majesty is of, having lost as you know many years by the Preaching of the Gospel those infinite Revenues which he was wont to have out of England, Scotland, Germany, Switzerland, Denmark and others, and now out of France and the Low Countries; so as we are to think that his name only is used, and all or the most part of the charge born by others.
The Queen nevertheless by the Almighty Power of God standeth fast, maugre the Pope and all his Friends; having hitherto resisted all attempts against her, to her great honor and their great shame. As
The Rebellion in the North suppressed without effusion of Blood, wherein her Majesty may say as Cæsar did, veni, vidi, vici; so expedite and so honourable was the Victory that God did give her by the diligence and valour of those noble men that had the conducting thereof.
The Enterprize of James Fitz Morrice defeated, and himself slain.
The Italians pulled out by the ears at Smirwick in Ireland, and cut in pieces by the notable Service of a noble Captain and Valiant Souldiers.
Neither these nor any other threatnings or fears of danger hath or doth make her to stagger or relent in the Cause of Religion, but like a constant Christian Princess she still holdeth fast the profession of the Gospel that hath so long upholden her, and made us to live in Peace twenty two Years and more under her most Gracious Government, free from those troubles that our Neighbours have felt; so as this now seemeth to be our present State, a blessed, peaceable and happy time, for the which we are most bound to God and to pray unto him for the continuance thereof.
But yet notwithstanding, seeing our Enemies sleep not, it behoveth us not to be careless, as though all were past; but rather to think, that there is but a piece of the storm over, and that the greater part of the Tempest remaineth behind, and is like to fall upon us by the malice of the Pope, the most Capital Enemy of the Queen and this State, the determinations of the Council of Trent, and the Combination of the Pope with other Monarchies and Princes devoted unto Rome, assuring our selves that if their Powers be answerable to their Wills, this Realm shall find at their hands all the Miseries and Extremities that they can bring upon it. And though by the late good Success which God hath given in Ireland, these lewd and malitious Enterprizes seem for a time to be as it were at a stand; yet let us be assured that neither their attempts upon Ireland, neither the mischiefs intended against England will cease thus; but if they find us negligent they will be ready with greater Forces than have been yet seen. The certain determination which the Pope and his Combined Friends have to root out the Religion of the Gospel in all places, and to begin here as their greatest impediment, is cause sufficient to make us the more vigilant, and to have a wary eye to their doings and proceedings, how smoothly soever they speak or dissemble their Friendships for the time: for let us think surely, that they have joined hands together against us, and if they can, they will procure the Sparks of the Flames that have been so terrible in other Countries, to fly over into England, and to kindle as great a Fire here. And as the Pope by open Hostility, as you see, hath shewed himself against her Majesty; so the better to Answer in time the purposes that he hath set down in the mean season till they may come to ripeness, he hath and doth by secret practices within this Realm leave nothing unproved, emboldening many undutiful Subjects to stand fast in their disobedience to her Majesty and her Laws. For albeit the pure Religion of the Gospel hath had a free course, and hath been freely Preached now many years within this Realm by the Protection of her Majesties most Christian Government; yet such have been the practices of the Pope and his secret Ministers, as the obstinate and stiffnecked Papist is so far from being reformed, as he hath gotten Stomach to go backward, and to shew his disobedience not only in arrogant words but also in contemptuous Deeds.
To confirm them herein and to increase their number you see how the Pope hath and doth comfort their hollow hearts with Absolutions, Dispensations, Reconciliations, and such other things of Rome. You see how lately he hath sent hither a sort of Hypocrites, naming themselves Jesuits, a rabble of Vagrant Friers newly sprung up and running through the World to trouble the Church of God, whose principal Errand is by creeping into the Houses of men of behaviour and reputation, not only to corrupt the Realm with false Doctrine, but also under that pretence to stir up Sedition, to the peril of her Majesty and her good Subjects.
How these practices of the Pope have wrought in the disobedient Subjects of this Land is both evident and lamentable to consider. For such impression hath the estimation of the Pope's Authority made in them, as not only those which from the beginning have refused to obey, but many, yea very many of those which divers years together did yield and conform themselves in their open Actions, sithence the Decrees of that unholy Council of Trent, and sithence the publishing and denouncing of that blasphemous Bull against her Majesty, and sithence those secret Absolutions and Reconciliations, and the swarming hither of a number of Popish Priests and Monkish Jesuits, have and do utterly refuse to be of our Church, or to resort unto our Preaching and Prayers. The sequel whereof must needs prove dangerous to the whole State of the CommonWealth.
By this you see what cause we have justly to doubt great mischief threatned to this Realm; and therewith you may easily see also how for the preventing and withstanding of the same it behoveth her Majesty not only to provide in time sufficient Laws for the continuing of this peaceable Government, but also to be ready with Forces to repress all attempts that may be enterprized either by Enemies abroad, or by evil Subjects at home.
What difference there is between the Popes persecuting Church and this mild Church of the Gospel, hath been seen in all Ages, and especially in the late Government compared with the merciful time of her Majesties Reign; the continuance of which Clemency is also to be wished so far as may stand with Gods Honour and the Safety of the Realm: but when by long proof we find that this favourable and gentle manner of dealing with the Disobeyers and Contemners of Religion to win them by fair means if it were possible, hath done no good, but hath bred in them a more arrogant and contemptuous Spirit, so as they have not only presumed to disobey the Laws and Orders of the Realm, but also to accept from Rome secret Absolutions, Reconciliations and such like; and that by the hands of lewd Runnagates, Priests and Jesuits, harbouring and entertaining them even in their Houses, thereby showing an Obedience to the Pope, by their direction also nourishing and training up their Children and Kinsfolks, not only at home but also abroad in the Seminaries of Popery; now I say it is time for us to look more narrowly and strictly to them, lest as they be corrupt, so they prove dangerous Members to many born within the entrals of our CommonWealth.
And seeing that the Lenity of the time and the mildness of the Laws heretofore made, are no small cause of their arrogant disobedience, it is necessary that we make a provision of Laws more strict and more severe to constrain them to yield their open Obedience, at the least, to her Majesty in causes of Religion, and not to live as they list to the perillous Example of others, and to the encouraging of their own evil affected minds: but if they will needs submit themselves to the Benediction of the Pope, they may feel how little his Curses can hurt us, and how little his Blessings can save them from that punishment which we are able to lay upon them; letting them also find how dangerous it shall be for them to deal with the Pope or any thing of his, or with those Romish Priests and Jesuits, and therewith also how perillous it shall be for those seditious Runnagates to enter into the Land, to draw away from her-Majesty that Obedience which by the Laws of God and Man are due unto her.
This then is one of the Provisions which we ought to take care of in this Council, whereby we may both enjoy still that happy Peace we live in, and the Pope take the less boldness to trouble us by any favour he shall find here.
The next is Provision of Forces sufficient to Answer any violence that may be offered either here or abroad; for the which you know it is requisite that her Majesty do make Preparation both by Sea and by Land.
God hath placed this Kingdom in an Island environed with the Sea as with a natural and strong Wall, whereby we are not subject to those sudden Invasions which other Frontier Countries be. One of our greatest defences standing by Sea, the number of good Ships is of the most importance for us. What the Queens Navy is, how many notable Ships, and how far behind the Navy of any other Prince, is known to all men, and therewith also it may be easily considered how great Charges be incident to the same.
Necessary also it is that her Majesty have Forces by Land sufficient to chastise the Rebels in Ireland, and to repress any Foreign attempts either there or here. For which Services either by Land or by Sea her Majesty needeth not, as other Princes are fain to do, to entertain necessary Souldiers of Foreign Countries hardly gotten, costly and dangerously kept, and in the end little or no service done them; but may bring sufficient Forces of her own natural Subjects, ready and easy to be levied, that carry with them willing, valiant and faithful minds, such as few Nations may easily compare with. But these Forces with their Furniture and Munition, can neither be prepared nor maintained to have continuance without provision of Treasure sufficient to bear the Charge, being as you know termed of old Nervus belli.
This belongeth to us to consider, and that in time there be not lack of the Sinews that must hold together the strength of our Body. And because through the malice of our Enemies her Majesty is driven to keep great Forces in Ireland for the better suppressing of that Rebellion to her exceeding Charge, and for that also it is uncertain how sudden and how great other attempts may be; therefore in reason, our supply of that maintenance ought to be the more, especially the Wars being at this day so costly as every man in his private expence may easily judg. But left that peradventure some may judge that the Contribution granted by us now five Years past both frankly and dutifully, might suffice for many years without any new; I dare assure you for the acquaintance I have (though I be unworthy) with those her Majesties Affairs, that the same hath not been sufficient to Answer the extraordinary Charges happened since then, especially those of Ireland, by the one half; but her Majesty hath supplied the rest out of her own Revenues, sparing from her self to serve the necessity of the Realm, and shunning thereby Loans upon interest as a most pestilent Cancer that is able to devour even the States of Princes. Which being so, as it is most true, we are not to think upon the charge that is past, but the good we have received by it, being by that provision well and honourably defended against the malice of our Enemies. And therefore considering the great benefit we have received, by the last payment being easily taxed and easily born, whereby we have kept all the rest in Peace; let us as provident Councellors of this State prepare again in time that which may be able to withstand the mischiefs intended against us. To do this willingly and liberally, our duty to our Queen and Country, and our Safeties move us. The love and duty that we owe to our most Gracious Queen, by whose Ministry God hath done so great things for us, even such as be wonderful in the Eyes of the World, ought to make us more careful for her preservation and security than for our own. A Princes known by long experience to be a principal Patron of the Gospel, vertuous, wife, faithful, just, unspotted in word and deed, merciful, temperate, a maintainer of Peace and Justice amongst her People without respect to Persons; a Queen besides of this noble Realm, our Native Country, renowned of the World, which our Enemies daily gape to over-run, if by force or sleight they could do it; For such a Queen and such a Country, and for the defence of the Honour and Safety of them both, nothing ought to be dear unto us, that with most willing hearts we should not spend and adventure freely.
The same love and duty that we owe to our Gracious Soveraign, and to this our Native Country, ought to make us all to think upon the Realm of Ireland as upon a principal Member of this Crown, having continued so this four hundred Years or more. To lose that Land or any part thereof, which the Enemies seek, would not only bring with it dishonour, but also prove a thing most dangerous to England considering the nearness of that Realm to this, and the goodness of so many notable Havens as be there. Again to reform that Nation by planting there of Religion and Justice, which the Enemies labour to interrupt, is most godly and necessary; the neglecting whereof hath and will continue that People in all Irreligion and Disorder, to the great offence of God, and to the infinite Charge of this Realm.
Finally let us be mindful also of our safety, thereby to avoid so great dangers, not seen afar off, but imminent over our heads.
The quietness that we have by the Peaceable Government of her Majesty, doth make us to enjoy all that is ours in more freedom than any Nation under the Sun at this day: but let not that breed in us a careless Security, as though this clear Sun-light could never be darkened; but let us think certainly that the Pope and his Favourers do both envy our Felicity, and leave no practice unsought to over-throw the same. And if any man be so dull (as I trust there be none here) that he cannot conceive the blessedness of this our golden Peace, except he felt the lack of it; let him but cast his Eyes over the Seas, into our Neighbours Countries, and there behold what trouble the Pope and his Ministers have stirred against such as profess the same Religion of Jesus Christ as we do: there he may find Depopulations and Devastations of whole Provinces and Countries, over-throwing, spoiling and sacking of Cities and Towns, Imprisoning, ransoming and murthering of all kind of People; besides other infinite Calamities which the insolency of War doth usually bring with it.
From these God in his Mercy hath delivered us; but this nevertheless is the State and condition that our Enemies would see us in, if by any device they could bring it to pass; and to that end be then assured they will spare for no cost, nor leave any means unassayed.
Therefore to conclude, seeing the malice of the Pope and his Confederates are so notorious unto us, and seeing the dangers be so great, so evident and so imminent, and seeing that Preparations to withstand them cannot be made without support of the Realm; and seeing that our Duties to God, our Queen and Country, and the necessity that hangeth upon our own Safeguards, be reasons sufficient to perswade us, let us think upon these matters as the weight of them deserveth, and so provide in time both by Laws to restrain and correct the evil affected Subjects, and by provision of that which shall be requisite for the maintenance of Forces, as our Enemies finding our minds so willing, and our hands so ready to keep in Order our Country, and to furnish her Majesty with all that shall be necessary, may either be discouraged to attempt any thing against us, or if they do, they may find such resistance, as shall bring confusion to themselves, honour to our most Gracious Queen, and Safety to all of us.
Mr Norton pursued the same Admonition, and required the House to proceed to a manner of executing it, which in his opinion was to appoint all the Privy-Council of this House and certain other fit Persons to consult of Bills convenient to be framed according to the said Motion to be presented to the House; which Motion also was well allowed, and Committees appointed to meet in the Exchequer-Chamber that Afternoon at two of the Clock, viz. All the Privy-Council of this House, Sir Thomas Heneage Treasurer of the Chamber, the Masters of Requests, Sir George Carie Knight Marshal, Mr Fortescue Master of the Wardrobe, Mr Recorder of London, Mr Serjeant Fenner, Mr Serjeant Fleetwood, Sir James Harrington, Sir William More, Sir Thomas Scott, Sir John Brockett, Sir Henry Radclyffe, Mr Yelverton, Mr Henry Gates, Mr Hutton, Mr Philip Sidney, Sir Henry Leigh, Mr Woolley, Sir Thomas Shirley, Sir Henry Knivett, Mr Norton, Mr Aldersey, Sir Rowland Hayward, Mr Matthew, Sir Robert Wingfeild, Sir Thomas Porter, Sir Thomas Parrot, Mr John Price, Mr Aylmer, Sir George Speak, Mr Lieutenant of the Tower, Sir Thomas Cecill; Sir Arthur Bassett, Mr Crooke, Mr Robert Wroth, Mr Edward Lewkenor, Mr Thompson, Mr Layton, Mr Edward Stanhope, Mr Charles Morrison, Mr Gilbert Talbot, Mr Edward Cary, Mr. Peter Wentworth, Mr. Sandes, Sir Robert Stapleton, Sir Nicholas St Leger, Sir James Mervin, Sir William Winter, Sir Edward Unton, Mr. Fabian Philipps, Mr. Edgecombe, Sir Henry Woodhouse, Mr. Payton and Mr. Digby.
It was Ordered that the House should be called upon Saturday next at two of the Clock in the Afternoon.
William Hanney Servant to Mr. Anthony Kirle, having on Monday the 23th day of January last past been present in the House of Commons about the space of half an hour, being no Member of it, and having been thereupon committed to the Serjeant of the House, was this Forenoon brought to the Bar by the Serjeant, who humbly upon his Knees submitted himself to the grace and favour of this House, acknowledging his fault to proceed only upon simplicity and ignorance; whereupon after some Examinations when he had willingly taken the Oath against the Popes Supremacy, he was remitted by the House paying his Fees.
In the Afternoon about two of the Clock the said Committees did meet in the Exchequer Chamber, where Mr Norton spake very well to those matters which had been propounded by Sir Walter Mildmay in the Forenoon, and did thereupon exhibite certain Articles to the like purpose, which were by the Committees considered and some others added unto them. And it was Ordered that Mr Serjeant Fleetwood, Mr Serjeant Fenner, Mr Serjeant Flowerden, and Mr Yelverton and Mr. Norton should set down the matters upon which they had there agreed, and having digested them into Articles should exhibit them at the next meeting of the Committees, which was appointed to be on Friday next at two of the Clock in the Afternoon.
On Thursday the 26th day of January, the Bill for avoiding of Counterfeit Instruments under Counterfeit Seals of any Office or Offices, was read the second time, and committed unto Mr. Vice-Chamberlain, Mr. Chancellor of the Exchequer, Mr. Treasurer of the Chamber, Sir Thomas Brown, Mr. Sands, Mr. Cromwell and Mr. Atkins; who were appointed to meet on Saturday next at two of the Clock in the Afternoon in the Exchequer Chamber.
The Bill for avoiding of Incumbrances against Purchasers was read the second time and Ordered to be ingrossed.
The Bill that Actions upon the Case shall be brought in proper Counties was read the second time, and after sundry Arguments was upon the question committed to Sir George Cary, Sir George Speake, Mr. Serjeant Fenner, Mr. Wroth and others, who were appointed to meet this Afternoon at two of the Clock in the Temple-Church.
On Friday the 27th day of January, Seven Bills of no great moment had each of them one reading; of which the first being the Bill for the speedy recovery of Debts was read the first time.
The Bill for the Reformation of the Clerk of the Market, and the Proviso added unto it was read the second time, and committed unto Mr. Treasurer, Mr. Comptroller, Mr. Lieutenant of the Tower, Sir Thomas St Poole, Mr. Grimsditch and others, who were appointed to meet on Monday next in the Afternoon at two of the Clock, and the Clerk of the Market to be Licensed to attend them, and to be heard before them if he will.
The House being moved did grant that the Serjeant who was to go before the Speaker being weak and somewhat pained in his Limbs, might ride upon a Foot-Cloth Nag.
This day lastly in the Afternoon was a Motion made by Mr. Norton to have a Committee appointed to draw two Bills, the one against secret and stoln Contracts of Children without the consent of Parents, &c. The other against exacting upon the Clergy by Ordinaries and by underCollectors of Tenths, and it was committed to Sir Walter Mildmay and himself.
The Committees appointed on Wednesday last the 23th day of this instant January to meet this Afternoon at two of the Clock in the Exchequer Chamber, about the framing and drawing up the two Bills of Religion and the Subsidy, met accordingly, where the Articles and heads that concerned them were appointed to Mr. Norton to Pen and bring to the House the next day.
On Saturday the 28th day of January, Three Bills of no great moment had each of them one reading; of which the last being the Bill for the preservation of Woods, was read the second time and committed unto Mr. Lieutenant of the Tower, Sir Thomas Scott and others, who were appointed to meet at the Temple-Church upon Monday next at two of the Clock in the Afternoon.
Two Bills also had each of them their second reading; of which the first being a Bill against the erecting of Iron-Mills near the City of London and the River of Thames, was read the second time and committed to the former Committees in the Bill for preservation of Woods.
It was Ordered that the House should be called on Wednesday next in the Afternoon.
The Bill touching the Defeasances of Statutes of the Staple was read the second time, and committed unto Mr. Vice-Chamberlain, Mr. Chancellor of the Exchequer, Mr. Humfrey Gilbert, Mr. Sands and others, who were appointed to meet on Monday next at three of the Clock in the Afternoon in the Exchequer Chamber.
The Bill for the Assize of fuel was read the second time, and committed unto the same former Committees in the Bill for Woods, and at the same time and place.
A Motion was made by Mr. Alford, and pursued by Mr. St Poole and Mr. Snagg, touching composition for Purveyances, and assented to have Conference by Mr. Treasurer and Mr. Comptroller on Thursday next.
In the Afternoon the Committees met again in the Exchequer Chamber about the two Bills for Religion and Subsidy.
The Articles which were exhibited by Mr. Norton concerning the Bill of Subsidy were allowed by the Committees, and he appointed to draw the said Bill accordingly; and the Articles agreed for the rates and times of Taxations Certificates and payment of a Subsidy and two Fifteenths.
On Monday the 30th day of January, the Bill touching Wrecks of the Sea was read the second time, and committed unto the Master of the Jewel-House, Sir Thomas Scott, Sir William Winter, Sir William Moore, Sir Arthur Bassett, Mr. Grimsditch, Mr. Layton, Mr. Aldersee, Mr. Rogers, Mr. Shirley, Mr. Boyes, Mr. Knight and Mr. Borrey, who were appointed to meet to Morrow at two of the Clock in the Afternoon in the Exchequer Chamber.
Three Bills of no great moment had each of them one reading; of which the last being the Bill for the speedy recovery of Debts was read the third time and passed upon the question.
Mr. Attorney General and Mr. Doctor Clerk did bring from the Lords two Bills, viz. An Act against slanderous words and rumors, and other seditious practices against the Queens Majesty, and an Act for avoiding of slanderous Libelling.
The Bill for avoiding of certain Incumbrances against Purchasers was read the third time.
And a Proviso to this Bill was once read and dashed upon the question, and likewise the Bill passed upon the question.
On Tuesday the 31th day of January, the Bill for the speedy recovery of Debts which passed this House yesterday, was upon Motion made to this House by Mr. Speaker upon the mistaking of this House of some part of the said Bill, amended upon the question, with interlining of these words, viz. [such and of Debts] the whole sentence wherein these interlined words are contained being thrice read, and the Bill again passed upon the question accordingly.
The two Bills sent yesterday to this House from the Lords being against seditious practising and slanderous Libelling, had each of them its first reading.
The two Bills that passed this House yesterday being for the speedy recovery of Debts, and for the avoiding of certain Incumbrances against Purchasers, were sent up to the Lords by Mr. ViceChamberlain, Mr. Chancellor of the Exchequer, and others.
The Bill for furniture of Armour and Weapons had its first reading.
Upon Motions made yesterday to this House by Mr. Diggs for maintenance of the Navy and Mariners, and also for a supply of Souldiers, and setting idle persons on work, and by Fishing to procure increase of Gain and Wealth to the whole State of this Realm, it is Ordered, that the consideration hereof be committed unto all the Privy-Council being of this House, and that as many of this House as are acquainted with that matter of Plot and device may attend them at their pleasure, and to meet upon Friday next at two of the Clock in the Afternoon in the Exchequer Chamber.
The Bill for punishing of unlawful having two Wives at once, was read the second time, and committed to Mr. Doctor Dale Master of the Requests, Sir Thomas Browne, Mr. Recorder of London, Mr Layton, Mr. Alford, Mr. Grimsditch, Mr. Newdigate, Mr. Snagg, Mr. Thomas Bowyer and Mr Greenfeild, who were appointed to meet at two of the Clock in the Afternoon upon Saturday next in the Exchequer Chamber.