Page images
PDF
EPUB

I.

Whitlock's
Memoirs.

against the king, invaded England, overran the country to the CHARLES Tyne, forced the lord Conway to retreat, and seized Durham and Newcastle. The king marched against them as far as The Scots York, and was not unprovided to give them battle : but having England. reason to suspect some of the officers and centinels were 'tainted in their loyalty, and disinclined to fight the Scots, he consented to a treaty at Rippon : where, after some debate, the English and Scotch commissioners agreed to a cessation of The treaty

at Rippon. arms. Secondly, that the Scotch army should be allowed eight hundred and fifty pounds a day during their quartering in England : which contribution was to be raised in the counties of Northumberland, Westmorland, Durham, and the town of Newcastle. Thirdly, the river Tees was to be the barrier to both armies : and as to the main articles, they were to be referred to a farther treaty at London.

When the king was upon his expedition against the Scots, archbishop Laud received information out of Holland of a plot against his majesty : that this treason was carried on in England by Seignior Con and his confidants: that these conspirators finding the archbishop resty as to any alterations in religion, resolved to dispatch him first : and that when this obstacle was removed, they did not despair of working the king's humour. The first discoverer of this plot was one Hist. of Andreas Ab-Habernsfeild, a Bohemian gentleman, physician bles of to the lady Elizabeth, who married the Paltzgrave; this gen- Laud

Archbishop tleman sent a friend of his with a narrative to sir William Boswell, his majesty's agent in Holland: Habernsfeild's friend Hammond.

L'Estrange, having sworn sir William to secrecy, it was agreed between Hist. of them, that the

papers
should be sealed, and sent by an express

King to the archbishop of Canterbury; Laud took care to have Haberns

feild's supthem put in the king's hands. His majesty at the beginning posed plot. of the next parliament, nominated a committee of lords to 795. examine this matter. In short, all the papers were read before the king and the committee. But it seems the narrative was

agents ( as it somewhat perplexed, and the proofs defective. That Laud did is said ) plot not give much credit to this relation, appears by the manner

fc. of his reporting this plot at his trial, and by his omitting fist, of the

Troubles, the mention of it in his diary; in which, things of much less &c. of

Archbishop importance are taken notice of. The learned Wharton like

Laud, p.163. wise questions the matter of fact in his preface to the “His- Cyprian. tory of the Archbishop's Troubles," &c. And since there p. 452.

the Trou

Charles 1.

The pope's

my death,

LAUD, was no prosecution upon the narrative, and the marks of Abp. Cant.

truth were not sufficiently legible, I shall enter no farther into

the story.

The long

meets.

declaim

August 22. To proceed: the king having lately marched against the

Scots, a paper was dropped in Covent Garden, to encourage the apprentices and soldiers to attack the archbishop ; but one of the mob having been executed for a late attempt at Lambeth, they had not courage enough to renew the

enterprise. But, not long after, when the High Commission October 21. sat at St. Paul's, about two thousand Brownists insulted

the court, pulled down all the benches in the consistory, and cried out they would have no bishops nor High Commission. Thus the king, by this tumult, was put to the expense of ordering a guard for St. Paul's, as he had done before at Westminster, for the protection of the convocation.

On the 3rd of November, the long parliament, which proved parliament

so fatal to the king, met at Westminster. At the opening Some of the this session, the commons made speeches against the crown members

and the Church, in a very remarkable manner, and gave early against the indications of what followed. What they delivered against the hierarchy.

bishops discovers a great deal of heat and disaffection, gives a strong countenance to schism, and charges popery at random. In short, there is much more satire and declamation than solid proof in these remonstrances. These gentlemen, that harangued with so much vigour, seemed to be angry with the bishops for their revenues and authority, and grudged them the benefit of the constitution. I shall pass over the exceptions some of the members made against insisting upon conformity, against the High Commission, against a power in the bishops to license books, and the clergy being put into posts of civil jurisdiction. I shall waive the recital, I

say, of what was delivered upon these heads, because they are Rushworth's mostly made up of invective without argument. But from

Bagshaw, one of the long robe, something more of law and logic might have been expected.

To give the reader the substance of this learned member's speech upon episcopacy. In the beginning of his discourse, he supposes an episcopacy of two sorts: the first, in statu puro, as it stood in the primitive times; the second, in statu corrupto, or in its modern declension. This latter condition he applies to the English hierarchy, and endeavours to prove that epis

Hist. Coll.

part 2. p. 1342. et deinc.

I.

copacy, in this state of degeneracy, encroaches upon the crown CHARLES in the four following particulars.

His first instance is in bishop Hall's late book, wherein it is Bagshaw's asserted, that episcopacy, both in the office and jurisdiction, amined. is jure divino ; and that, in matters purely spiritual, this is no more than truth, I have fully proved in the first volume of this work. But to go on with Mr. Bagshaw, who pretends this assertion is directly contrary to the laws of England. His first proof is brought from the statute of Carlisle, 35 Ed. I., where it is said, as sir Edward Coke reports, that the Coke's Church of England is founded in the state of prelacy, by part 5. Cau

, the king of England and his progenitors. But that these dry's case. words relate to revenues and endowment, may partly be collected from what follows, where it is said the design of this foundation was to enable the bishops to keep hospitable houses, and relieve the poor. Further: that the first Saxon kings—to mention no other—did not pretend to convey the powers in the episcopal character, nor so much as to fill the vacant sees, is sufficiently shown in the first part of this history. His next proof is taken from Magna Charta, cap. 1, where the king declares, “ Concessimus Deo et Ecclesiæ Anglicanæ omnes libertates,” &c. To this it may be answered, in the first place, that Magna Charta was commonly supposed to be nothing more than a confirmation of the subjects' right. Secondly, it is said, “ Concessimus Deo,”—we have granted to God. Now, could Bagshaw suppose the king would pretend to grant God any new power or jurisdiction? It is plain, therefore, the charter must be understood of secular privilege and jurisdiction. And, when these things are settled upon the Church, they are said to be given to God, because they are designed for the support of his worship, and the encouragement of those who represent him. His third argument, from 37 Hen. VIII. cap. 17, has been considered already in the reign of that prince, and thither I refer the reader.

For his second encroachment of the hierarchy upon the crown, he only produces a common saying, “ No bishop, no king ; no mitre, no sceptre.” But this is only fighting a phantom and pursuing his own shadow, and requires no further consideration.

His third instance of the hierarchy “trenching upon the crown," as he calls it, was the maintaining the bishops a

[ocr errors]

יי

לי

לל

8 Eliz.

1.

Coke's

fol. 1.

Hist. Coll.

part. 2. p. 1343.

LAUD, third estate in parliament ; "and, therefore, the king and Abp. Cant. parliament could not be without them.”

This he utterly denies, and makes the king one of three estates. But, notwithstanding this categorical language, the archbishops, bishops, and clergy, are expressly declared to be one of the "greatest

states of this realm.” And that the bishops are essential to cap.

the legislature no less than the temporal lords and commons, Inst. part 4.

is granted by sir Edward Coke.

The fourth pretended encroachment is the bishops holding ecclesiastical courts in their own names, and not in the name of the king, nor by commission from him, contrary to the statute 1 Edw. VI. cap. 2. But this objection, having been already answered, shall be passed over. Bagshaw, in the conclusion of his speech, makes a further discovery of his disaffection to episcopacy, and declares, that, had he lived in

Scotland, France, Geneva, or the Low Countries, he should Rushworth's have been for Presbyterian Church government.

The lord Digby thought the late convocation misbehaved

themselves, and harangued strongly against their proceedings. Lord Dig He conceives their taxing the clergy an invasion of the subby's speech.

jects' right, and calls their benevolence a malevolence; and the levying this benevolence by synodical acts, and under the penalties of excommunication and deprivation, is complained of as intolerable oppression, and an encroachment upon the civil legislature. But, notwithstanding these tragical expressions, the clergy had always the privilege of taxing their own body. Neither from Magna Charta until the thirty-seventh of Henry VIII. is there any parliamentary confirmation of subsidies given by the clergy. For what reason this custom was afterwards altered is not easy to account for. It is possible it

might be for the benefit of the crown, and for the better 796. securing the payment of the money granted; for, since the

Reformation, the jurisdiction of the Church was much sunk, and her censures less regarded. Now the convocation could proceed no further than spiritual penalties. They had no authority over the secular magistrate, neither could they command the justices of peace to levy their subsidies by distress; and therefore, that the crown might not be disappointed of the money granted by the convocation, their subsidies from the thirty-seventh of Henry VIII. downwards, were generally confirmed by act of parliament. But that the clergy's granting

Statutebook.

I.

acceptum

Dr. Atterbury's

the king a benevolence without such confirmation, exceeded CHARLES their power, is more than is proved. Had the convocation pretended to tax the laity, the objection had been good. But to contest their authority for raising money upon their own body, is to cross upon custom and known privilege: neither could the clergy without doors reckon this a grievance, for they had already given their consent for this purpose in their procuratorial letters; for in this instrument, signed and sealed by the electors for convocation, they engage themselves to allow and abide by the proceedings of their clerks and proctors. Besides, there was a precedent in queen Elizabeth's Se ratum

gratum et reign in defence of this practice. For in the year 1585, the convocation granted a subsidy or benevolence, and levied the habere quicmoney by synodical authority, without any confirmation from procuratores the parliament ; neither was this at all complained of. This fecerint, vel instance was suggested to the archbishop of Canterbury in See the May last, and the convocation record appealed to for the truth Appendix to of the fact.

On the 4th of November the convocation met at St. Paul's; Powers, &c. the sermon was preached by Bargrave, dean of Canterbury. of a ConvoThe lower house chose their old prolocutor, and adjourning to the concoking Henry VII.'s chapel, the archbishop made a speech : he but does lamented the unhappiness of the times ; put them in mind of nothing. the storm rising upon the Church; exhorted them to perform the duty of their respective places, and stand their ground with resolution. There was nothing of moment transacted in this convocation. But Warmister, one of the clerks for the diocese of Worcester, made a motion which must not be forgotten; it was, that according to the direction of the Levitical law, they should endeavour to cover the pit which they had opened : that is, they should prevent their enemies, and null the offensive canons which had passed in the last convocation. But the house seemed to have a better opinion of the canons, and rejected the motion. However, Warmister being disappointed, published a long speech upon this subject, and ran a satire upon some of the canons. But all this remonstrance was not reckoned merit enough to protect him afterwards from sequestration.

About a week forward, Williams, lord bishop of Lincoln, Bishop was discharged from his imprisonment in the Tower; the Williams

enlarged. house of Lords having applied to the king for this purpose. ,

VOL. VIII.

« PreviousContinue »