صور الصفحة
النشر الإلكتروني

friends thought needful, and all mankind

hated him most were willing to compound with him, and that his majesty should not withdraw his countenance from him. But he continued in all bis charges, and had a very great party in the parliament that was most devoted to serve the king; so that his majesty was often put to desire his help to compass what he desired. He did heartily oppose the king's marching with his army into England; the ill success whereof made many men believe, afterwards, that he had more reasons for the counsels he gave, than they had who were of another opinion. And the king was so far from thinking him his enemy, that, when it was privately proposed to him, by those he trusted most, that he might be secured from doing hurt when the king was marched into England, since he was so much against it; his majesty would by no means consent to it, but parted with him very graciously, as with one he expected good service from. All which the commissioners [of Scotland, foes to Argyle] well remembered, and were very unwilling that he should be again admitted into his presence, to make his own excuses for any thing he could be charged with. And his behaviour afterwards, and the good correspondence he had kept with Cromwell, but especially some confident averments of some particular words or actions which related to the murder of his father, prevailed with his majesty not to speak with him, which he laboured by many addresses in petitions to the king, and letters to some of those who were trusted by him, which were often presented by his wife, and his son, and in which he only desired, to speak with the king, or with some of those lords, pretending, that he should inform and communicate somewhat that would highly concern hisi

expected from him; though he endeavour.

majesty's service. But the king not vouchsas.ng to admit him to his presence, the English lords had no mind to have any conference with a man who had so dark a character, or to meddle in an affair that must be examined and adjudged by the laws of Scotland : and so it was resolved, that the marquis of Argyle should be sent by sea into Scotland, to be tried before the parliament there, when the commissioner should arrive who was dispatched thither with the rest of the lords, as soon as the seals, and other badges of their several offices, could be prepared. And what afterwards became of the marquis, is known to all meno.”—It is, I think, very easy to conclude, from this narrative,though partial and untrue in many parts of it,—that Charles was under very great obligations to Argyle; and that his refusing to see him, and his delivering him up to the rage of his enemies, was highly ungrateful. If innocent, the marquis had a right to his protection :-if guilty, his services claimed, at least, $0 small a favour as to be heard by the king in his own defence. But his majesty's ingratitude in this affair will be farther manifested by the following letter, or declaration, written with bis own hand, and signed with his seal manual, dated at St. Johnstoun, Sept. 24, 1650.--" Having taken into my consideration the faithful endeavours of the marquis of Argyle, for reștoring me to my just rights, and the happy settling of my dominions; I am desirous to let the world see how sensible I am of his real respect to me, by some particular marks of my favour to him, by which they may see the trust and confidence which I repose in

· Clarendon's Continuation, vol. II. p. 99.

ed to excuse himself from the imputation

worn out

him: and, particularly, I do promise, that I will make him duke of Argyle, and knight of the garter, and one of the gentlemen of my bed-chamber; and this to be performed when he shall think it fit. And I do farther promise him, to hearken to his counsels

-whenever it shall please God to restore me to my just rights in England, I shall see him paid the forty thousand pounds sterling which is due to him. All which I do promise to make good upon the word of a kinga.

CHARLES R." But all these promises, we have seen, were of no signification, Such was the faith, such the gratitude, of this prince !--Nor was the treatment of Charles Stanley, earl of Derby; whose father lost his head, and he his liberty, for the king; much better. The last earl of Derby, of the Stanley family, has perpetuated it by the following inscription, on a building erected at Knowsley, his seat in Lancashire.

“ James, earl of Derby, lord of Man and the Isles, grandson of James, earl of Derby, and of Charlotte, daughter of Claude duke de la Tremouille, whose husband, James, was beheaded at Bolton, xv. Octob. MDCLII. for the strenuously adhering to Charles the Second, who refused a bill, past unanimously by both houses of parliament, for restoring to the family the estate lost by his loyalty to him, MDCCXxxn b.' His majesty, however, rewarded the son with the lord lieutenancies of two counties !

a Wodrow's History of the Sufferings of the Church of Scotland, vol. I. p. 56. fol. Edinb. 1721. See also Biographia Britannica, p. 1150. • Rapin's History of England, by Tindal, vol. II. p. 586. in the notes $ Catalogue of Royal and Noble Authors, vol. II. p. 4.

by weak reasons.

After this, we shall not

Clarendon we have had occasion frequently to quote. He was a man of parts, and industry; though not very fit for a statesman, by reason of his pride, vanity, partiality, and ignorance in public affairs. Attached, however, he was to his master, by principle and inclination; and studious to promote his interest. The recommendation of Charles I. whose cause he had espoused, and a long exile, had given him consequence with the young monarch; to whom his understanding and diligence were, on many occasions, very useful, surrounded as he was by visionaries, debauchees, and idlers of various kinds.

At the Restoration, this man was loaded with honours and favours : but he soon lost ground with the king, who suffered his enemies to persecute him; and even joined with them so far as to burry him out of the kingdom, and assent to a bill devised for his perpetual banishment. If the account his lordship has given of this affair, be true; the king must have had a base heart indeed. For his lordship informs us, “ that his majesty sent to the archbishop of Canterbury, that he should, in his majesty's name, command all the bishops' bench to concur in thanking him for removing the chancellor [Clarendon]; that he publickly denied what he had declared to the duke of York, and which he had given him liberty to report, in his vindication; that he discoursed of him differently to different persons; and, lastly, by deceitful promises, induced him to fly, and thereby expose himself, with seeming justice, to the penalties which were afterwards inflicted on him ?." Whether the chancellor was justly punished

Continuation, vol. III. p. 841--867.

by parliament, is not here the question.- I will add but one instance more of the ingratitude of Charles; but that is such a one as will serve to illustrate his character very remarkably. It is well known that Charles I. was talked of as a martyr, both before and after his son's restoration: as a martyr, therefore, it was naturally to be supposed he would be honoured. This, of course, would produce a solemn interment; and a superb monument, suitable to the great merits and dignity of the person. And, if lord Clarendon may be believed, “ his majesty had resolved to do it before his coming into England.” Why it was not done, his lordship has told us a long-winded story; the substance of which is, that the body of the king's father could not be found at Windsor, where it had been interred, because the lords Southampton and Lindsey, who had attended on that occasion, “ could not recollect their memories, nor find any one mark by which they could make any judgment near what place the kings body laya.”—This was the excuse to save appearances; and cover over disregard and neglect of a parent, who, in his eye, had nothing of the tyrant or foe to mankind. For, in fact, it was nothing but an excuse; and founded in falsehood too." It has been made a question, and a wonder, by many, why a particular monument was not erected for Charles I.” says Echard," after the restoration of his son; especially when the parliament was well inclined to have given a good sum for that grateful purpose. This has caused several conjectures, and reflections: and intimations have been given, as if the royal body had never been deposited there [Windsor]; or, else, had afterwards

a Clarendon's Continuation, vol. II. p. 192. and History of the Rebellion, vol. y.



« السابقةمتابعة »