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ABBOT, ness, of your especial grace, not only to permit our comfortable Abp. Cant.
proceeding in our former course, but also to encourage and countenance us therein by your majesty's royal favour. And to this our humble and dutiful desire, we are the more hopefully heartened by calling to mind your majesty's public opinion touching the equal power and freedom of all princes and potentates in the external order and disposition of Church-discipline within their particular territories; and also because your majesty is the only man whom the world may, and these lords do, profess and bless, as the most honourable instrument of quenching the consuming fires of schism which were lately kindled amongst them by the Vorstian and Arminian faction ; which apparently will be more dangerously revived now again by this change between ourselves and the Dutch and French Churches, with whom we converse, to the infamy and obloquy both of our persons and all our precedent actions, and the exposing of ourselves and our congregations to the aforesaid perils, either of plenary dissolution, or such grievous vexation as we should not be able to endure : being thereby left destitute of all comfortable order and government, and the laudable means to make our lawful proceedings known so far as the French and Dutch do, when they are required by their superiors, and as we have done, and are ready still to do, by their example.
“ Wherefore, most mighty king, we, your majesty's subjects, do here prostrate ourselves in the person of this our brother, Mr. John Forbes, whom in all duty we send from amongst ourselves to your majesty, beseeching your grace to shine now again, and for ever upon us, to the renewing of our happy hopes, the refreshing of our grieved hearts, and the rejoicing of all with whom we converse, who jointly with us shall ever praise the God of heaven for your majesty's experienced favours past, and these at this present thus humbly desired; and shall pray together with us for all increase and accumulation of all honourable felicities upon your majesty's soul and body, crown and posterity, for ever and ever.
“ Your majesty's humble and obedient subjects,
66 Thos. BARKLEI, preses. “Thos. Scot, scribe in name, and at the
command of the rest of the synod."
What answer these ministers received to their petition, I CHARLES have not met with; but by the scheme bishop Laud offered this year to the privy-council, for regulating divine service in the English factories and troops abroad; from this scheme, I say, it is pretty plain the English clergy in Holland were connived at both by the late king and his present majesty, and suffered to act in synods by their own inclination, and manage to the latitude of their petition.
Laud's draught for a regulation of these matters is digested into ten articles.
"First. The colonels of English regiments in the Low Bishop Countries should entertain no clergy as preachers to their regi- gestions to the privyments, but such as should entirely conform to the Church of council for England, being first recommended by the lords of the privy-city council, with the advice of the archbishops of Canterbury and to the Church amongst the York. English beyond sea. 753.
Secondly. That the merchants residing there, or in any other foreign dominions, shall admit no minister as preacher to their company, but such as shall be qualified and recommended as aforesaid.
Thirdly. That if any clergyman has made use of any indirect means to procure such a recommendation, and proves afterwards a Dissenter, he might be obliged either to conform within three months, or be discharged.
Fourthly. [The fourth article, except that it obliges the Scotch clergy officiating in factories, and regiments beyond sea, to the same length of conformity, is coincident with the first.]
"Fifthly. That if any minister or preacher, being the king's born subject, should print, preach, or discourse, to the disparagement of the doctrine or discipline of the Church of England, notice should be given to the ambassador, and by him to his majesty, that the person offending might be sent for home, and answer for his misbehaviour.
"Sixthly. That no colonel or deputy-governor should permit the preacher (when sick, or necessarily absent) to substitute any person to preach or officiate for him, but such for whose conformity he will be answerable.
Seventhly. That no deputy-governor should be sent to Delph, or any other place of residence for the English
ABBOT, merchants, but such as would engage to see the service of the Abp. Cant. Church of England exactly performed within the factory.
Eighthly. That as often as the merchants shall renew their patents, a clause for observing these instructions (or at least so many of them as should seem necessary to the lords of the privy-council) may be inserted.
“ Ninthly. That all his majesty's agents beyond sea may have these instructions given them in charge, and be obliged once a year to give the board an account of the success of this affair.
Tenthly. That the English ministers in Holland, being his majesty's natural born subjects, may not be permitted to hold any classical meetings, but especially not to ordain ; for unless they should be restrained from this last branch of ecclesiastical authority, there would be a standing nursery for schism and
faction, which might sensibly affect the repose of this kingCyprian. dom.”
Thus far with respect to factories and foreign parts. As to the French and Dutch Churches in England, Laud's suggestions to the privy-council went upon other heads.
His scheme for regulating the Dutch and French
First, He set forth the great piety and compassion of this government in entertaining foreigners when persecuted at
home, and indulging them the liberty of their own religion. Churches in Secondly, That it was never the intention of the government, England.
that after the first generation was worn out, their posterity, born subjects of this realm, should continue in their ancestors' separation from the English Church. That such a distinct communion must of course make them disaffected to the state, and apt to promote, or fall in with, any change more suitable to their humour. He observed, Thirdly, That they kept themselves a separate body, and intermarried only within themselves; that by this particular management, as they are now a Church within a Church, they might in a little time grow up to a commonwealth within a kingdom. Fourthly, That these foreign bodies, thus divided from Church and State, are for the most part settled in port towns next to France and the Low Countries, which may tempt them to strike in with an emergency, and make an unserviceable use of such a situation. Fifthly, That the example of such an indulgence makes an ill
impression on the English, and confirms them in their stub- CHARLES bornness and nonconformity. And therefore, Sixthly, That neither the French nor Dutch Churches should be tolerated in this kingdom, unless the English residing in foreign parts have the same liberty in doctrine, discipline, and worship.”
The dangers and inconveniencies being thus set forth, the bishop proceeds to the remedies.
“ And, First, He moves that the number of these foreigners planted in this kingdom may be exactly computed, in order to judge the better of the practicableness of bringing them to conformity. Secondly, That for this purpose an order may be issued by the government to take an exact list of them in their respective abodes: and that a certificate may be returned of those of most interest and substance amongst them. Thirdly, Provided they resolve to continue a separate body both from Church and State, they should then lie under the common disadvantage of strangers, have all duties doubled upon them, and not be capable of the privileges of natives. Fourthly, That when it shall be thought proper to bring them to the same condition with other subjects, they should be warned in an ecclesiastical way to frequent their parish churches, and conform themselves to the service and worship established : and, in case of noncompliance, to proceed against them by excommunication, and serve the writ excommunicato capiendo
And to lay this matter more together, though happening at some distance of time, I shall observe, that about three years forward, when Laud was translated to Canterbury, he tised some part of these suggestions both in his diocese and province. For instance: his vicar-general made the following regulation for those foreign Churches at Canterbury, Sandwich, and Maidstone ; and the same thing was done at Southampton and Norwich. This act, or order, was published by their own ministers in their congregations.
“I am commanded to signify unto you, that it is not his majesty's intent, nor that of the council of state, to dissolve our congregations. And to that end his majesty is content to permit the natives of the first degree to continue members of
ABBOT, our congregations, as before : but the natives in this Church,
it, to maintain them in their manufactures against those that Archbishop, would trouble them by informations.
. 754. That queen Elizabeth kept these foreigners under a restraint,
and allowed them only the English Liturgy in their own language, appears by a letter signed by her majesty to the lord treasurer Pawlet.
Hist. of the Troubles of
66 ELIZABETH. zabeth's letter for
Right trusty and right well-beloved cousin, we greet you regulating well. Whereas in the time of our brother, and sister also, the foreign Churches in church of the Augustine Friars was appointed to the use of all England.
the strangers repairing to the city of London, for to have therein Divine service ; considering that by an universal order all the rest of the churches have the Divine service in the English tongue for the better edifying of the people, which the strangers born understand not. Our pleasure is, that you shall assign and deliver the said church, and all things thereto be-, longing, to the reverend father in God the bishop of London, to be appointed to such curates and ministers as he shall think good, to serve from time to time in the same churches, both for daily Divine service, and for administration of the sacraments, and preaching of the Gospel ; so as no rite nor use be therein observed contrary or derogatory to our laws. And these our letters shall be your sufficient warrant and discharge in that behalf. Given under our signet, at our palace at Westminster, the . . . day of February, the second year of our reign."
In the latter end of this year, the feoffees for buying. improstituted by priations, were broken, and received judgment in the Exchefor buying in quer-chamber. To begin the narrative of this matter : about