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Commons adjourned for some days to consult with their friends in the city ; and the House of Lords held so good correspondence with them that they likewise adjourned to the same days they knew, by some intelligence, they intended to meet again. But the Lords made no committee to sit in the city.

When the committee met next morning at Merchant Tailors' Hall, where all who came were to have voices, and whither all did come at first (out of curiosity to observe what method they meant to proceed in rather than expectation that they should be able to do any good there), they found a guard ready to attend them of substantial citizens in arms, and a committee from the Common Council to bid them welcome into the city, and to assure them that “the city would take care that they and all their members should be secured from violence; and to that purpose had appointed that guard to attend them, which should be always relieved twice a day, if they resolved to sit morning and afternoon;” and acquainted them further, that “the Common Council, in contemplation that they might stand in want of anything, had likewise appointed a committee of so many aldermen and such a number of the Common Council, which should always meet, at a place named, at those hours which that committee should appoint to meet at; to the end that, if any things were to be required of the city, they might still know their pleasure and take care that it should be obeyed.” And thus they had provided for such a mutual communication and confederacy that they might be sure always to be of one mind, and the one to help the other in the prosecution of those designs and expedients which they should find necessary to their common end: the committee of the city consisting of the most eminent persons, aldermen and others, for their disaffection to the government of Church and State.

At their first sitting, the committee began with the stating the manner of the King's coming to the House, and all he did there; the several members mentioning all that they would take upon them to remember of his majesty's doing or speaking, both as he came to the House and after he was there; some of them being walking in Westminster Hall when the King walked through, and so came to the House with him or near him; others reporting what they had heard some of the gentlemen who attended his majesty say, as they passed by, every idle word having its commentary; and the persons, whoever were named, being appointed to attend, they having power given them to send for all persons and to examine them touching that affair. Nor had any man the courage to refuse to obey their summons; so that all those of the King's servants who were sent for appeared punctually at the hour that was assigned them, and were examined upon all questions which any one of the committee would propose to them, whereof many were very impertinent, and of little respect to the King.

It was very well known where the accused persons were, all together in one house in Coleman Street, near the place where the committee sat, and whither persons trusted passed to and fro to communicate and receive directions ; but it was not time for them yet to appear in public and to come and sit with the committee, or to own the believing that they thought themselves safe from the violence and assaults of the Court, the power whereof they exceedingly contemned whilst they seemed to apprehend it: nor was it yet time to model in what manner their friends in the city and the country should appear concerned for them, in preparing whereof no time was lost.

The truth is, it cannot be expressed how great a change there appeared to be in the countenance and minds of all sorts of people, in town and country, upon these late proceedings of the King. They who had before even lost their spirits, having lost their credit and reputation, except amongst the meanest people, who could never have been made use of by them when the greater should forsake them, and so, despairing of ever being able to compass their designs of malice or ambition, some of them were resuming their old resolutions of leaving the kingdom, now again recovered greater courage than ever, and quickly found that their credit and reputation was as great as ever it had been ; the Court being reduced to a lower condition, and to more disesteem and neglect, than ever it had undergone. All that they had formerly said of plots and conspiracies against the Parliament, which had before been laughed at, (was) now thought true and real, and all their fears and jealousies looked upon as the effects of their great wisdom and foresight. All that had been whispered of Ireland was now talked aloud and printed, as all other seditious pamphlets and libels were. The shops of the city generally shut up, as if an enemy were at their gates ready to enter and to plunder them; and the people in all places at a gaze, as if they looked only for directions, and were then disposed to any undertaking.

On the other side, they who had, with the greatest courage and alacrity, opposed all their seditious practices, between grief and anger were confounded with the consideration of what had been done and what was like to follow. They were far from thinking that the accused members had received much wrong, yet they thought it an unseasonable time to call them to account for it; that if anything had been to be done of that kind, there should have been a better choice of the persons, there being many of the House of more mischievous inclinations and designs against the King's person and the government, and were more exposed to the public prejudice, than the Lord Kimbolton was, who was a civil and well-natured man, and had rather kept ill company than drunk deep of that infection and poison that had wrought upon many others. Then Sir Arthur Haslerigge and Strowde were persons of too low an account and esteem ; and though their virulence and malice was as conspicuous and transcendent as any men's, yet their reputation and interest to do any mischief, otherwise than in concurring in it, was so small that they gained credit and authority by being joined with the rest, who had indeed a great influence. However, if there was a resolution to proceed against those men, it would have been much better to have caused them to have been all severally arrested and sent to the Tower or to other prisons, which might have been very easily done before suspected, than to send in that manner to the Houses with that formality which would be liable to so many exceptions. At least, they ought so far to have imparted it to members in both Houses who might have been trusted, that, in the instant of the accusation, when both Houses were in that consternation (as in a great consternation they were), somewhat might have been pressed confidently towards the King's satisfaction, which would have produced some opposition and contradiction, which would have prevented that universal concurrence and dejection of spirit which seized upon and possessed both Houses.

But, above all, the anger and indignation was very great and general that to all the other oversights and presumptions (was added) the exposing the dignity and majesty and safety of the King, in his coming in person in that manner to the House of Commons, and in going the next day, as he did, to the Guildhall and to the lord mayor's, which drew such reproaches upon him to his face. All which was justly imputed to the Lord Digby, who had before fewer true friends than he deserved, and had now almost the whole nation his enemies, being the most universally odious of any man in it.





The forward youth that would appear,
Must now forsake his Muses dear;

Nor in the shadows sing
His numbers languishing.

'Tis time to leave the books in dust,
And oil the unused armor's rust;

Removing from the wall
The corselet of the hall.

So restless Cromwell could not cease
In the inglorious arts of peace,

But through adventurous war
Urgèd his active star;

And like the three-forked lightning, first
Breaking the clouds where it was nurst,

Did thorough his own side
His fiery way divide.

For 'tis all one to courage high,
The emulous, or enemy;

And, with such, to inclose,
Is more than to oppose.

Then burning through the air he went,
And palaces and temples rent;

And Cæsar's head at last
Did through his laurels blast.

'Tis madness to resist or blame
The face of angry heaven's flame;

And, if we would speak true,
Much to the man is due,

Who, from his private gardens, where
He lived reserved and austere,

(As if his highest plot
To plant the bergamot,)

Could by industrious valor climb
To ruin the great work of time,

And cast the kingdoms old
Into another mold!

Though justice against fate complain,
And plead the ancient rights in vain –

But those do hold or break,
As men are strong or weak.

Nature, that hateth emptiness,
Allows of penetration less,

And therefore must make room
Where greater spirits come.

What field of all the civil war,
Where his were not the deepest scar ?

And Hampton shows what part
He had of wiser art:

Where, twining subtle fears with hope,
He wove a net of such a scope

That Charles himself might chase
To Carisbrook's narrow case;

That thence the royal actor borne,
The tragic scaffold might adorn.

While around the armed bands
Did clap their bloody hands,

He nothing common did or mean
Upon that memorable scene;

But with his keener eye
The axe's edge did try:

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