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they did their parts excellently well. The lord viscount Hereford was a steady man among the country lords ; so also was the lord Townshend, a man justly of great esteem and power in his own country, and amongst all those that well know him. The earl of Carnarvon ought not to be mentioned in the last place; for he came out of the country on purpose to oppose the bill, stuck very fast to the country party, and spoke many excellent things against it. I dare not mention the Roman catholic lords, and some others, for fear I hurt them; but thus much I shall say of the Roman catholic peers, that if they were safe in their estates, and yet kept out of office, their votes in that house would not be the most unsafe to England of any sort of men in it. As for the absent lords, the earl of Rutland, lord Sandys, lord Herbert of Cherbury, lord North, and lord Crew, ought to be mentioned with honour; having taken care their votes should maintain their own interest and opinions. But the earls of Exeter and Chesterfield, that gave no proxies this session; the lord Montague of Boughton, that gave his to the treasurer; and the lord Roberts his to the earl of Northampton ; are not easily to be understood. If you ask after the earl of Carlisle, the lord viscount Falconberg, and the lord Berkley of BerkleyCastle, because you find them not mentioned amongst all their old friends; all I have to say is, that the earl of Carlisle stepped aside to receive his pension ; the lord Berkley to dine with the lord-treasurer ; but the lord viscount Falconberg, like the nobleman in the gospel, went away sorrowful, for he had a great office at court. But I despair not of giving you a better account of them next session, for it is not possible, when they consider, that Cromwell's major-general, son-in-law, and friend, should think to find their accounts amongst men that set up on such a bottom.
Thus, sir, you see the standard of the new party is not yet set up, but must be the work of another session ; though it be admirable to me, how the king can be induced to venture his affairs upon such weak counsels, and of so fatal consequences. For I believe it is the first time in the world, that ever it was thought advisable,
after fifteen years of the highest peace, quiet, and obedience, that ever was in any country, that there should be a pretence taken up, and a reviving of former miscarriages, especially after so many promises and declarations, as well as acts of oblivion, and so much merit of the offending party, in being the instruments of the king's happy return; besides the putting so vast a number of the king's subjects in utter despair of having their crimes ever forgotten. And it must be a great mistake in counsels, or worse, that there should be so much pains taken by the court to debase and bring low the house of
peers, a military government be not intended by some. For the power of the peerage, and a standing army, are like two buckets, in the proportion that one goes down, the other exactly goes up. And I refer you to the consideration of all the histories of ours, or any of our neighbour northern monarchies; whether standing forces, military and arbitrary government, came not plainly in by the same steps that the nobility were lessened; and whether, whenever they were in power and greatness, they permitted the least shadow of any of them. Our own country is a clear instance of it; for though the white rose and the red changed fortunes often, to the ruin, slaughter, and beheading the great men of the other side ; yet nothing could enforce them to secure themselves by a standing force. But I cannot believe that the king himself will ever design any such thing ; for he is not of a temper robust and laborious enough to deal with such a sort of men, or reap the advantages, if there be any, of such a government. And I think he can hardly have forgot the treatment his father received from the officers of his army, both at Oxford and Newark ; it was an hard, but almost an even choice, to be the parliament's prisoner, or their slave ; but I am sure the
greatest prosperity of his arms could have brought him to no happier condition, than our king his son has before him, whenever he pleases. However, this may be said for the honour of this session, that there is no prince in Christendom hath, at a greater expense of money, maintained for two months space a nobler or more useful dispute of the politics, mystery, and secrets of government, both in church and state, than this hath been ; of which noble design no part is owing to any of the country lords, for several of them begged, at the first entrance into the debate, that they might not be engaged in such disputes as would unavoidably produce divers things to be said, which they were willing to let alone. But I must bear them witness, and so will you, having read this ; that they did their parts in it, when it came to it, and spoke plain, like old English lords.
I shall conclude with what, upon the whole matter, is most worthy your consideration, that the design is “to declare us first into another government more absolute and arbitrary than the oath of allegiance, or old law, knew; and then “ make us swear unto it,” as it is so established. And less than this the bishops could not offer in requital to the crown for parting with its supremacy, and suffering them to be sworn to be equal with itself. Archbishop Laud was the first founder of this device. In his canons of 1640, you shall find an oath very like this, and a declaratory canon preceding, “that monarchy is of divine right *;" which was also
* In the constitutions and canons ecclesiastical; treated upon by the archbishops of Canterbury and York, &c. in the year 1640, and published for the due observation of them, by his majesty's authority, under the great seal of England; the I. canon contains an explanation of the regal power, ordained and decreed to be read by every parson, vicar, curate, or preacher, upon some one Sunday in every quarter of the year at morning prayer; wherein it is said : “ The most high and sacred order of kings is of divine right, being the ordinance of God himself, founded in the prime laws of nature, and clearly established by express texts both of the Old and New Testament .....
“ For any person or persons to set up, maintain, or avow in any (king's) realms or territories respectively, under any pretence whatsoever, any independent co-active power, either papal or popular (whether directly or indirectly) is to undermine the great royal office, and cunningly to overthrow that most sacred ordinance, which God himself hath established: and so is treasonable against God, as well as against the king.”
“ For subjects to bear arms against their kings, offensive or defensive, upon any pretence whatsoever, is at the least to resist the powers, which are ordained of God: and though they do not do swear,
affirmed in this debate by our reverend prelates, and is owned in print by no less men than archbishop Usher, and bishop Sanderson*; and I am afraid it is the avowed opinion of much the greater part of our digni
invade, but only resist, St. Paul tells them plainly, they shall receive to themselves danınation.”
And, by the VI. canon, an oath against all innovation of doctrine or discipline is decreed and ordained to be taken, not only by all archbishops, and bishops, and all other priests and deacons; upon pain, if they refuse to take it, of being deprived of all their ecclesiastical promotions whatsoever, and execution of their functions, which they hold in the church of England ; but likewise by all masters of arts, bachelors, and doctors in divinity, law or physic; all schoolmasters, &c. which hath these words :“ I A.B.
that I do approve the doctrine and discipline or government established in the church of England, as containing all things necessary to salvation...... Nor will I ever give my consent to alter the government of this church by archbishops, bishops, deans, and archdeacons, &c. as it stands now established, and as by right it ought to stand," &c.
These canons were no sooner published, but there was a general outcry made against them. How they were treated by the puritans, may be seen in a pamphlet printed in 1640, with this title: England's Complaint to Jesus Christ, against the Bishops Canons, of the late sinful Synod, a seditious Conventicle, a Packe of Hypocrites, a sworn Confederacy, a traiterous Conspiracy against the true Religion of Christ, and the weale Publicke of the Land, and consequently against the Kingdome and Crowne. In this Complaint are specified those Impieties and Insolencies which are most notorious, scattered through the Canons and Constitutions of the said sinful Synod. And confuted by Arguments annexed hereunto, in 4to. Several petitions being at the same time presented to the king against the new canons, and particularly against the oath before mentioned : his majesty was pleased to suspend their execution : which, however, could not prevent their falling under the censure of the house of commons; for on the 16th of December 1640, they declared that those canons did contain many matters contrary to the king's prerogative, to the fundamental laws and statutes of this realm, to the rights of parliament, to the property and liberty of the subject, and matters tending to sedition, and of dangerous consequence. “ These public censures of the canons," says a learned and ingenious historian, “ however grounded on prejudice and faction, have made them ever since reputed null and void, &c." See the complete History of England, &c. Vol. III. ad ann. 1640. p. 113. Lond. 1719, in fol.
* Archbishop Usher did, by order of king Charles I, write treatise, intitled, The Power communicated by God to the Prince, and the Obedience required of the Subject, &c. which
fied clergy. If so, I am sure they are the most dangerous sort of men alive to our English government;
was published, in the year 1660, by Dr. Sanderson, bishop of Lincoln; and in that treatise, after having observed that the commands of princes are either of such things as may and ought to be done, or of such as cannot or ought not to be done, he puts this question : but how are subjects to carry themselves, when such things are enjoined as cannot or ought not to be done? To which he answers, “ Surely not to accuse the commander, but humbly to avoid the command ...... And, when nothing else will serve the turn, as in things that may be done, we are to express our submission by active, so in things that cannot be done, we are to declare the same by passive obedience, without resistance and repugnancy; such a kind of suffering being as sure a sign of subjection as any thing else whatsoever." And some pages lower, he proposes an objection, and answers it. “ But, says he, if men's hands be thus tied, will some say, no man's state can be secure; nay, the whole frame of the commonwealth would be in danger to be subverted and utterly ruined, by the unbridled Just of a distempered governor.'
“ I answer, God's word is clear in the point, (Rom. xiii. 2. 5.) Whosoever resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God; and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation; and thereby a necessity is imposed upon us of being subject even for conscience sake; which may not be avoided by the pretext of any ensuing mischief whatsoever. For, by this means we should have liberty given unto us to (James iv. 11,) speak evil of the law, and to judge the law. But if thou judge the law, thou art not a doer of the law, but a judge, saith St. James. It becomes us, in obedience, to perform our part; and leave the ordering of events to God, whose part only that is." The power communicated by God to the Prince, &c. page 147. 149, 150. 157. London, 168%, in 8vo,
Dr. Sanderson was of the same opinion, as it appears by his long preface to archbishop Usher's treatise just mentioned ; wherein, among other things, he says, that a mixt monarchy is an arrant bull, a contradiction in adjecto, and destroyeth itself; but more particularly by that famous passage in a sermon of his preached at Hampton-Court, in the year 1610: “No conjuncture of circumstances whatsoever can make that expedient to be done at any time, that is of itself, and in the kind (Oj gas w uy xanov, Torpu xanóv. Eurip. Phæniss. Act. 3.) unlawful. For a man to blaspheme the holy name of God, to sacrifice to idols, to give wrong sentence in judgment, by his power to oppress those that are not able to withstand him, by subtilty to over-reach others in bargaining, to take up arms, (offensive or defensive) against a lawful sovereign ; none of these, and sundry other things of like nature, being all of them simply, and de toto genere, unlawful, may be done by any man, at any time, in any case, upon any colour or pretension whatsoever; the express command of God himself only excepted, as in the case of Abraham for sacrificing