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able purpose to do him any harm, but from particular and personal animosities against other men. And, afterwards, the terror all men were under of the parliament, and the guilt they were conscious of themselves, made them watch all opportunities to make themselves gracious to those who could do them good; and so they became spies upon their master, and from one piece of knavery were hardened and confirmed to undertake another; till at last they had no hope of preservation butby the destruction of their master. And after all this, when a man might reasonably believe that less than a universal defection of three nations could not have reduced a great king to so ugly a fate, it is most certain, that, in that very hour when he was thus wickedly murdered in the sight of the sun, he had as great a share in the hearts and affections of his subjects in general, was as much beloved, esteemed, and longed for by the people in general of the three nations, as any of his predecessors had ever been. To conclude, he was the worthiest gentleman, the best master, the best friend, the best husband, the best father, and the best Christian that the age in which he lived produced. And if he were not the greatest king, if he were without some parts and qualities which have made some kings great and happy, no other prince was ever unhappy who was possessed of half his virtues and endowments, and so much without any kind
of vice. CLARENDON.
Oliver Cromwell was sprung from a noble and illustrious family. The name was famous of old under the kings for skill in the administration of public affairs; and it grew more famous in consequence of the orthodox or reformed religion being at the same period established among us for the first time. He grew up in the privacy of his own family, and till his age was quite mature and settled, which he also passed in private, was chiefly known for his strict attendance upon the purer worship, and for his integrity of life. He had cherished his confidence in God, he had nursed his great spirit in silence, for some extraordinary times. When a parliament was at last called by the king, he was returned member for his own town; and immediately became conspicuous for the justness of his opinions, and the firmness of his counsels. When the appeal was made to arms, he is appointed, by his own choice, to a troop of horse; and as his force was augmented by the eager zeal of the good, who flocked from all quarters to his standard, he soon surpassed almost the greatest generals in the grandeur of his achievements, and in the rapidity with which they were executed. Nor is this to be wondered at: for, he was a soldier, above all others the most exercised in the knowledge of himself; he had either destroyed, or reduced to his own control, all enemies within his own breast—vain hopes, fears, desires. A commander first over himself, the conqueror of himself, it was o>er himself he had learned most to triumph. Hence, he went to encounter with an external enemy as a veteran accomplished in all military duties, from the day he first entered the camp. It would not be possible for me, within the limits of this eulogium, to follow him with all suitable dignity through so many captured cities, so many battles, and those of the greatest order, in none of which was he ever conquered or put to flight; but he traversed the whole circle of Britain in one continued series of victories—victories, which demand the great work of a regular history; another field, as it were, on which they may be told; a space for narration equal to the things to be described. To evince his extraordinary, his little less than divine virtue, this mark will suffice; that there lived in him an energy whether of spirit and genius, or of discipline, established not by military rule only, but by the rule of Christ and of sanctity, that he drew all to his camp, as to the best school both of military science, and of religion and piety—nay, those who were already good and brave, from all parts, or made them such principally by his own example; and although there were many who opposed him, retained them in their duty (and yet retains) during the whole period of the war, sometimes even of an intervening peace, through so many changes of minds and of circumstances, not by largesses and military licence, but by his authority and their pay alone .and greater praise than this we are not wont to bestow either upon Cyrus, Epaminondas, or upon any of the first generals of antiquity. Hence it is, that no one ever raised for himself a larger or
better disciplined army in shorter time, obedient in all things to the word of command, welcome to the citizens and beloved by them; to its enemies in arms terrible indeed, but when reduced to peaceable subjection, the objects of their admiration: for so far from being oppressive and mischievous, when quartered in their fields and houses, when those enemies recollected the violence, the drunkenness, the impiety and lust of their own royalists, they were happy at the change, and now thought themselves visited not by enemies, but by guests; a protection to the good, a terror to the evil, the encourager to all virtue and piety. Imilton.
He was one of those men, quos vituperare ne inimici quidem possunt, nisi ut simul laudent; whom his very enemies could not condemn without commending him at the same time: for he could never have done half that mischief without great parts of courage, industry, and judgment. He must have had a wonderful understanding in the natures and humours of men, and as great a dexterity in applying them; who, from a private and obscure birth (though of a good family), without interest or estate, alliance or friendship, could raise himself to such a height, and compound and knead such opposite and contradictory tempers, humours, and interests into a consistence that contributed to his designs and to their own destruction; whilst himself grew insensibly powerful enough to cut off those by whom he had climbed, in the instant that they projected to demolish their own building. What was said of Cinna may very justly be said of him, ausum eum, qiue nemo auderet bonus; perfecisse, qua a nullo, nisi fortissimo, perfici possent: he attempted those things which no good man durst have ventured on; and achieved those in which none but a valiant and great man could have succeeded. Without doubt, no man with more wickedness ever attempted any thing, or brought to pass what he desired more wickedly, more in the face and contempt of religion and moral honesty; yet wickedness as great as his could never have accomplished these designs, without the assistance of a great spirit, an admirable circumspection and sagacity, and a most magnanimous resolution.
When he appeared first in the parliament, he seemed to have a person in no degree gracious, no ornament of discourse, none of those talents which used to conciliate the affections of the stander by: yet as he grew into place and authority, his parts seemed to be raised as he had occasion to use them; and when he was to act the part of a great man, he did it without any indecency, notwithstanding the want of custom.
After he was confirmed and invested Protector by the humble Petition and Advice, he consulted with very few upon any action of importance, nor communicated any enterprise he resolved upon, with more than those who were to have principal parts in the execution of it; nor with them sooner than was absolutely necessary. What he once resolved, in which he was not rash, he would not be dissuaded from, nor endure any