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states; can any man have so good an opinion of his own talents, as to think himself capable of reaching these glorious and wonderful works of Almighty God, by any language, by any style of his? Which enterprise, though some of the most eminent persons in our commonwealth have prevailed upon me by their authority to undertake, and would have it be my business to vindicate with my pen against envy and calumny (which are proof against arms) those glorious performances of theirs, (whose opinion of me I take as a very great honor, that they should pitch upon me before others to be serviceable in this kind of those most valiant deliverers of my native country; and true it is, that from my very youth, I have been bent extremely upon such sort of studies, as inclined me, if not to do great things myself, at least to celebrate those that did,) yet as having no confidence in any such advantages, I have recourse to the divine assistance; and invoke the great and holy God, the giver of all good gifts, that I may as substantially, and as truly, discourse and refute the sauciness and lies of this foreign declaimer, as our noble generals piously and successfully by force of arms broke the king's pride, and his unruly domineering, and afterwards put an end to both by inflicting a memorable punishment upon himself, and as thoroughly as a single person did with ease but of late confute and confound the king himself, rising as it were from the grave, and recommending
himself to the people in a book published after his death, with new artifices and allurements of words and expressions.
"A horrible message had lately struck our ears, but our minds more, with a heinous wound concerning a parricide committed in England in the person of a king, by a wicked conspiracy of sacrilegious men." Indeed that horrible message must either have had a much longer sword than that which Peter drew, or those ears must have been of a wonderful length, that it could wound at such a distance; for it could not so much as in the least offend any ears but those of an ass. For what harm is it to you, that are foreigners? are any of you hurt by it, if we amongst ourselves put our own enemies, our own traitors to death, be they commoners, noblemen, or kings? Do you, Salmasius, let alone what does not concern you: for I have a horrible message to bring of you too; which I am mistaken if it strike not a more heinous wound into the ears of all grammarians and critics, provided they have any learning and delicacy in them, to wit, your crowding so many barbarous expressions together in one period in the person of (Aristarchus) a grammarian; and that so great a critic as you, hired at the king's charge to write a defence of the king his father, should not only set so fulsome a preface before it, much like those lamentable ditties that used to be sung at funerals, and which can move compassion in none but a cox
comb; but in the very first sentence should provoke your readers to laughter with so many barbarisms all at once. "Persona regis," you cry. Where do you find any such Latin? or are you telling us some tale or other of a Perkin Warbec, who, taking upon him the person of a king, has, forsooth, committed some horrible parricide in England? which expression, though dropping carelessly from your pen, has more truth in it than you are aware of. For a tyrant is but like a king upon a stage, a man in a visor, and acting the part of a king in a play; he is not really a king. But as for these Gallicisms, that are so frequent in your book, I won't lash you for them myself, for I am not at leisure; but shall deliver you over to your fellow-grammarians, to be laughed to scorn and whipped by them.
Men at first united into civil societies, that they might live safely, and enjoy their liberty, without being wronged or oppressed; and that they might live religiously, and according to the doctrine of Christianity, they united themselves into churches. Civil societies have laws, and churches have a discipline peculiar to themselves, and far differing from each other. And this has been the occasion of so many wars in Christendom; to wit, because the civil magistrate and the Church confounded their jurisdictions.
You are in perfect darkness, that make no difference betwixt a paternal power, and a regal; and
that when you had called kings fathers of their country, could fancy that with that metaphor you had persuaded us, that whatever is applicable to a father, is so to a king. Alas! there is a great difference betwixt them. Our fathers begot us. Our king made not us, but we him. Nature has given fathers to us all, but we ourselves appointed our own king. So that the people is not for the king, but the king for them. "We bear with a father, though he be harsh and severe"; and so we do with a king. But we do not bear with a father, if he be a tyrant. If a father murder his son, he himself must die for it; and why should not a king be subject to the same law, which certainly is a most just one? especially considering that a father cannot by any possibility divest himself of that relation, but a king may easily make himself neither king nor father of his people. If this action of ours be considered according to its quality, as you call it, I, who am both an Englishman born, and was an eye-witness of the transactions of these times, tell you, who are both a foreigner and an utter stranger to our affairs, that we have put to death neither a good, nor a just, nor a merciful, nor a devout, nor a godly, nor a peaceable king, as you style him; but an enemy, that has been so to us almost ten years to an end; nor one that was a father, but a destroyer to his country. .
That it is lawful to depose a tyrant, and to punish him according to his deserts; nay, that this is
the opinion of very eminent divines, and of such as have been most instrumental in the late reformation, do you deny it if you dare. You confess, that many kings have come to an unnatural death; some by the sword, some poisoned, some strangled, and some in a dungeon; but for a king to be arraigned in a court of judicature, to be put to plead for his life, to have sentence of death pronounced against him, and that sentence executed; this you think a more lamentable instance than all the rest, and make it a prodigious piece of impiety. Tell me, thou superlative fool, whether it be not more just, more agreeable to the rules of humanity, and the laws of all human societies, to bring a criminal, be his offence what it will, before a court of justice, to give him leave to speak for himself; and, if the law condemn him, then to put him to death as he has deserved, so as he may have time to repent or to recollect himself; than presently, as soon as ever he is taken, to butcher him without more ado? Do you think there is a malefactor in the world, that if he might have his choice, would not choose to be thus dealt withal? And if this sort of proceeding against a private person be accounted the fairer of the two, why should it not be counted so against a prince? Nay, why should we not think, that himself liked it better? You would have had him killed privately, and none to have seen it, either that future ages might have lost the advantage of so good an example; or that they that did