Page images
PDF
EPUB

tbrough the midst of his enemies. Ile would not so wonderfully have new modelled that| First Session Of The Second PARLIAMENT

OF King CHARLES II. COMMONLY CALLED army, so inspired their hearts and the hearts of the whole nation, with an honest and impa

THE Lung or PENSIONARY PARLIAMENT. tient longing for the return of their dear The King's Speech.] May 8. 1661. This sovereign; and, in the mean time, have so day the New Parliament met. The King, bctried him (which had little less providence in ing arrayed in his regal robes with his crown it than the other) with these unnatural, or at on his head, ascended bis seat of state; the least unusual, disrespects and reproaches Peers being in their robes, and the Commons abroad, that he might have a harmless and an being below the bar, his majesty made a innocent appetite to his own country, and short Speech, declaring the cause and the reareturn to his own people with a full value, sons for bis summoning the present parliament and the whole unwasted bulk of his affections, as followeth: without being corrupted or biassed by extra- “My lords and gentlemen of the house of ordinary foreign obligations. God Almighty commons:- I will not spend the time in tellwould not bave done all this but for a servant, ing you why I called you bither; I am sure I whom he will always preserve as the apple am glad to see you here. I do value myself of his own cye, and always defend from the much upon keeping my word, upon making most secret imaginations of his enemies.- If good whatsoever I promise to my subjects: these argumentations, gentlemen, urged with and I well remember when I was last in this that vivacity as is most natural to your own place, I promised that I would call a parliagratitude and affections, recover as many (and ment as soon as could be reasonably expected. it would be strange if they should not) as have or desired; and truly, considering the season been corrupted by the other logic, the hearts of the year, and all that bas been done since of the whole nation, evev to a man, will insen- we paried, you could not reasonably expect to sibly be so devoted to the king, as the only meet sooner than now we do. If it might conservator and protector of all that is dear have been a week sooner, you will confess and precious to them; and will be so zealous there was some reason to defer it to this day, to please him, whose greatest pleasure is to for this day : we may without superstition love see them pleased, that when they make choice one day, prefer one day before another, for the of persons again to serve in parliament, they memory of some blessings that befel us that will not chuse such as they wish should oppose day; and then you will not wonder that the the king, but therefore chuse because they memory of the great affection the whole kinghave, and because they are to like to serve the king with their whole hearts; and, since he to grant, or for bim to receive. Among other desires what is best for his people, to gratify designs to oblige him, there was one formed to him in all his desires. This blessed harmony settle such a Revenue upon him for life, as would raise us to the highest pinnacle of should place him beyond the necessity of askhonour and happiness in this world : a pin- ing more, except in the case of a war, or nacle without a point, upon which king and some such emergency. And as to particulars, people may securely rest and repose themseves, another Writer informs us, That Mr. Alex. against all the gusts, and storms, and temp-Popham, a man of intrigue and great capacity, tations which all the malice of this world can offered the king, with the assistance of a party raise against us : and I am sure you will he had in the parliament, to procure an Act all contend to be at the top of this pinnacle. for settling on him and his successors, above I have no more to add but the words of two millions a year by way of Subsidy ; which, custom, That the king declares this present with the Revenue of the Excise and other parliainent to be dissolved ; and this parlia- duties, must have made him a very rich ment is dissolved accordingly."*

prince. The king was well pleased with the

proposal, especially since the want of money “ Thus cnded the famous Convention, had occasioned his father's unfortunate proabout eight months after the first meeting, and jects; but advising about it with chancellor seven after the Restoration, when it received Hyde, that minister told him, “That the best the royal stamp of Parliament: an assembly · Revenue he could have, would be the gaining that began with the greatest expectation, and the hearts of his subjects; that if he would ended with the greatest satisfaction of all peo- trust to them, he would find such Supplies as ple. Never was so glorious a harmony between should never fail him in time of need.' Thereihe king and parliament of England for many fore it may be added, with another Writer, It years before. And here we may observe, with is to bis memory, that we owe our being a free ao ingenuous modern writer, that it looks as if people ; for he, with his two great friends, the Heaven took a more than ordinary care of the duke of Ormond and the earl of Southarupton, English, that they did not throw up all their checked the forwardness of some who were liberties at once, upon the Restoration of the desirous to load the crown with prerogative King; for, though some were for bringing him and revenue. He put a stop to all this, which back upon terms, yet after he was once come, being afterwards odiously represented, brought be so intirely possessed the hearts of his people, on that great and lasting, but honourable that they thought nothing too much for them disgrace." Echard, p. 783. VOL. IV.

N

[ocr errors]

dom shewed to me this day twelve-month,' clude without telling you some news; that I made nie desirous to meet you-again this day, think will be very acceptable 10 you; and when I dare swear you are full of the same therefore I should think niyself unkind and ille spirit, and that it will be lasting in you.' I natured, if I should not impart it to you. I think there are not many of you who are not have been often put in mind by my friends, particularly known to me ; there are very few That it was now high time to marry; and I of whom I have not heard so much good, that have thou:ht so myselt ever since I came into I ain sure, as I can be of any thing that is to England: but there appeared difficulties enough come, that you will all concur with me, and that in the choice, though many overtures have been I shall concur with you in ali things which made to me: and it I should never marry till I may advance the peace, plenty, and prosperity could make such a choice, against which there of the nation : I shall be exceedingly deceived could be no foresight of any inconvenience that else.—My lords and gentlemen ; you will pay ensuc, you would live to see me an old tind what method I think best for your pro- bachelor, which I think you do not desire to ceeding, by two Bills I have caused to be pre- do. I can now tell you, not only that I am repared for you, which are for confirmation of solved to marry, but to wlion I resolve to marry, all that was enacted at our last meeting: and if God please : and towards my resolution, I above all, I must repeat what I said when I bave used that deliberation, and taken that was last here; • That next to the miraculous advice, as I ought to do in an affair of that im• blessing of God Alinighty, and indeed, as an portance; and, trust me, with a full considera• iminediate effect of that blessing, I do impute tion of the good of my subjects in general, as

the good disposition and security we are all of inyselt: it is with the daughter of Portugal. * in, to the happy Act of Indemnity and Obli- When I had, as well as I could, weighed all that • vion : that is the principal corner-stone, which occurred to me, the first resolution I took, was * supports this excellent building, that creates to state the whole overtures which had been • kindness in us to each other, and confidence made to me, and, in truth, all that had been ' in our joint and common security.' I am sure I said against it to my privy-council; without ain still of the same opinion, and more, if it be hearing whose advice, I never did, nor ever possible, of that opinion, than I was, by the will, resolve any thing of public importance. experience I have of the benefit of it, and from And I tell you with great satisfaction and comthe unreasonableness of what some men say fort to myself, that after many hours debate against it, though I assure you not in my hear- in a full council

, for I think there was not ing. In God's name, provide full remedies for above one absent; and truly, I believe, upon any future mischiefs; be as severe as you will all that can be said upon that subjeci, for or against new offenders, especially if they be so against it, my lords, without one dissenting upon old principles, and pull up those princi- voice, yet there were very few sate silent, adples by the roots. But I shall never think him vised me with all imagivable chearfulness to å vise man who would endeavour to under this Marriage; which I looked upon as very mine or shake that foundation of our public wonderful, and even as some instance of the peace, by infringing that Act in the least de- approbation of God himself; and so took up gree ; or that he can be my friend, or wish me my own resolution, and concluded all with the well, who would persuade me ever to consent ambassador of Portugal, who is departing with to the breach of a promise I so solemnly made the whole Treaty signed, which you will find when I was abroad, and performed with that solemvity; because, and after I promised it, I who had heretofore affronted them in those cannot suspect any attempts of that kind by ways, because they were not the king's, and only any men of merit and virtue. *_ I will not con- because they knew they could obtain no justice

against them. They could not with any paLord Clarendon, in the Continuation of tience see those men, who not only during the liis Life, p. 96. says, “ That this warmth of war had oppressed them, plundered their luis majesiy upon this subject was not then hvuses, and bad their own adorned with the more than needful : for the armies being now furniture they bad robbed them of, ride upon disbanded, there were great combinations en- the same borses which they had then taken tered into, not to confirm the Act of Olli- from them upon no other pretence, but because vion; which they knew without confirmation they were better than their own; but, after the would signify nothing. Men were well enough war was ended, had comunitted many insolent contented that the king should grant indem- trespasses upon them wantonly, and to shew nity to all men that had rebelled against him; their power of Justice of Peace or Committee that he should grant their lives and fortunes to men, and had from the lowest beggars raised them, who bad forfeited them to bim: but great estates, out of which they were well able they thought it very unreasonable and unjust, to satisfy, at least in some degree, the damages that the king should release those debts which the other had sustained. And those and other were immediately due to them, and forgive passions of this kind, which must have invalithose trespasses which had been committed to dated the whole Act of Indemnity, could not their particular damage. They could not en- have been extinguished without the king's indure to meet the san e men in the king's high- fuence, and indeed liis immediate interposition way, now it was the king's highway again, and industry."

to contain many great advantages to the king- / when he referred wore to them than ever was dom: and I nake all the baste I can to fetch referred to parliament: he referred in truth you a queen bither, who, I doubt not, will (upon the matter) all that concerned brimself, bring great blessings with her, to me and you. all that concerned religion, all that conceroed I will add no more, but refer the rest to the the peace and happiness of the kingdom, to . Chancellor."

them; and to their honour be it spoken, and The Lord Chancellor's Speech.] After his lo their honour be it ever remembered, that majesty had finished his Speech, the Lord the king, religion, and the kingdom, have no Chancellor (the earl of Clarendon), having first reason to be sorry that so much was intrusted to conferred with bis majesty, spake as followeth: thein, nor they to be ashamed of the discharge

“ My lords; and you ile kviylits, citizens, of their trust. It would have been a very uvand burgesses, of the house of commons ;- seasonable scruple in any man, who should The king hath called you bither by his writ, to have refused to bear his part in the excellent assist him, with your information and advice, transactions of that parliament, because he in the greatest and weightiest affairs of the was not called thither by the king's writ; and kingdom; by his writ, which is the only good it would be a more unreasonable scruple now, and lawful way to the ineeting of a parliament; in any man, after we have all received the and the pursuing that writ, the remembering fruit and benefit of their councils and conhow and why they came together, is the only clusions, when in truth we owe our orderly and way to bring a happy end to parliaments. regular meeting at this time to their extraorThere was no sueh writ as this, no such pre- dinary meeting then, to their wisdom in laying sence as this, in the year 1649, when this un- hold upon the king's promises, and to the happy kingdom was dishonoured and exposed king's justice in performing all be promised, to the mirthi and reproach of their neighbours, and to the kingdom's submission and acquiesin the government of a Commonwealth. There cence in those promises; I say, it would be was no such writ as this, no such presence as very unseasonable and unreasonable now, to this, in Dec. 1653, when that infant Common- endeavour to shake that foundation, which, if wealth, when the three kingdoms of England, you will take the king's judgment, supports Scotland, and Ireland, and the doininions ihe whole fabric of our peace and security. He thereunto belonging, were delivered up into tells you wbat he shall think of any who goes the bloody and merciless hands of a devouring about to undermine that fouodation; which Protector, and sacrificed to his lust and appe- is a zeal no prince could be transported with tite. There was no such writ as this, no such but himself. It might have seemed enough presence as this, in the year 1656, when that for a king wlio had received so many injuries Protector was more solemnly invested and in- so bardly to be forgotten, undergone so many stalled, and the liberty of the three nations losses so impossible to be repaired, to have submitted to bis absolute tyranny by the hum- been willing to confirm and to re-enact the ble Petition and Advice. When people came Act of Oblivion and Indemnity, when you together by such exorbitant ineans, it is no should present it to bims; but to prepare such wonder tisat their consultations and conclu- an act for you, 10 conjure you by all that is sions were so disproportioned from any rules of precious by your friendship to bim, to dispatch justice or subriety. 'God be thanked, that he ihose acts with expedition, is such a piece of hath reserved us to this day, a day that many fatherly tenderness and picty, as could pror good men have died praying for; that, after recd from no heart but such a one in which all those prodigies in church and state, we God hath treasured up a stock of inercy and have lived to see the king at the opening of justice and wisdom to redeem a nation. And the parliament; that we have lived to see our truly, sny lords and gentlemen, for ourselves, king anointed and crowned, and crowned by if we will consider how much we owe to those the hands of an archbishop, as his predecessors who with all the faculties of their souls conhave heen, and that we are come hither this tributed to and contrived the blessed change, day in obedience to his writ.---The king tells the restoring the king to his people and his you, he hath caused a Bill or two to be pre- people to the king, and then how much we owe pared for the Confirmation of all that was to those who gave no opposition to the virtuenacted in the last parliainent, and commends ous activity of the other (and God knows a the dispatch of those to you with some ear- little opposition might have done much harm), nestness. The truth is, it is a great part of whether we look upon the public, or upon the business of this parliament, to celebrate our own private provocations, there will rethe memory of the last, by confirming or re- main so few who do not deserve to be forgiven enacting all that was done by that parliament, hy us, that we may very well submit to the which, though it was not called by the king's king's advice and his example; of whom we writ, may be reasonably thought to have been may very justly say, as a very good Ilistorian called by God himself, upon the supplication said of a very great emperor, and I am sure it and prayer of the king and the whole nation, could never be so truly said of any cnsperor as as the only means to restore the nation to its of ours, Facere recte cives suos, princeps happiness, to itself, to its honour, and even to optimus faciendo docet; cumque sit imperio its innocence. How glad the king was of it, maximus, exemplo major est: nor indeed appears by what he writ to them from Breda, hath he yet given us, or have we yet felt, any

other instances of his greatness, and power, and offensive to their stomachs and appetite, and superiority, and dominion over us, nisi' or to their very fancy. Allay and correct (as he said) ant levatione periculi, aut acces- those humours, which corrupt their stomachs

sione dignitatis;' by giving us peace, honour, and their appetites: if the good old known and security, which we could not have without tried laws be for the present too beavy for him; by desiring nothing for himself, but what their necks, wbich have been so many years is as good for us as for himselt'; and therefore, without any yoke at all, make a temporary I hope, we shall make no scruple of obeying provision of an easier and a lighter yoke, till, him in this particular.—My Lords and Gen. by living in a wbulesome rir, by the benetit of tlemen; Though the last parliament did great a soberer conversation, by keeping a better and wonderful things, indeed as much as in diet, by the experience of a good and just that time they could, yet they have left very governinent, they recover strength enough great things for you to do: you are to finish to bear, and discretion enough to discern, the structure, of which they but laid the foun- the benefit and the ease of those laws they dation; indeed they lett some things undone, disliked. If the present Oaths have any which it may be they thought they had finished: terms or expressions in them that a tender. you will find the Revenue they intended to conscience honestly makes scruple of subraise for the king very much short of what they mitting to, in God's name let other oaths be promised: you will find the Public Debts for formed in their places, as comprehensive of all the Discharge of the Army and the Navy, those obligations which the policy of governwhich they thought they had provided for suffi- ment must exact: but still let there be a yoke : ciently, to be still in arrear and unpaid : and let there be an Oath, let there be some law, here I am, by the king's special command, to that may be the rule to that indulgence, that, commend the poor Seamen to you, who, by under pretence of Liberty of Conscience, men the rules which were prescribed for their pay- may not be absolved from all the obligations ment, are in much worse condition than (with-ot law and conscience. I have besought your out question) was foreseen they would be; for, good-nature and indulgence towards some of by appointing them to be paid but from 1658 your weak patients, if by it they can be brought (which was a safe rule to the Army), very many to follow and submit to your prescriptions for are still in Arrear for 2, 3, or 4 years service; their health ; nor is it reasonable to imagine and so bis majesty's promise to them from Bre- that the distemper of 20 years can be rectida remains upperformed. Some other losses, fied and subdued in 12 months. There must which resulted from other rules given for their be a natural tiine, and natural applications, alpayment, have been supplied to them by the lowed for it. But there are a sort of patients king's own bounty. They are a people very that I must recommend to your utmost vigilworthy of your particular care and cherishing; ance, utmost severity, and to no part of your upon whose courage and fidelity very much' of lenity or indulgence; such who are so far from the happiness and honour and security of the valuing your prescriptions that they look not nation depends; and therefore his majesty upon you as their physicians, but their patidoubts not you will see justice done towards ents; such who, instead of repenting any thing them with favour.- My Lords and Gentle that they have done amiss, repeat every day men ; You are now the great physicians of the the same crimes for the Indemnity whereof the kingdom; and God knows, you have many way- Act of Oblivion was provided. These are the ward, and froward, and distempered patients, seditious Preachers, who cannot be conwho are in truth very sick, and patients, who tented to be dispensed with for their full obethink themselves sicker than they are ; and dience to some laws established, without resome who think themselves in health, and are proaching and inveighing against those laws, most sick of all. You must, therefore, use all / how established soever; who tell their authe diligence, and patience, and compassion, ditories, that the Apostle meant, when he which good physicians have for their patients; bid them stand to their liberties, that they all the chearfulness, and complacency, and in- should stand to their arms; and who, by redulgence, their several habits, and constitu- peating the very expressions, and teaching the tions, and distempers of body and mind, may very doctrine, they set on-foot in the year require. Bę not too melancholic with your 1610, sufficiently declare that they have no patients, nor suffer them to be too melancholic, mind that 20 years should put an end to the by believing that every little distemper will miseries we have undergone. What good presently turn to a violent fever, and that fever christian can think without horrour of these will presently turn to the plague; that erery Ministers of the Gospel, who by the:r funclittle trespass, every little swerving from the tion should be the messengers of peace, and known rule, must insensibly grow to a neglect are in their practice the only trumpets of war, of the law, and that neglect introduce an ab- and incendiaries towards rebellion ! How solute confusion; that every little difference much more Christian was that Athenian nun in opinion, or practice in Conscience or Reli- in Plutarch, and how shall she rise up in gion, must presently destroy Conscience and judgınent against these men, who, when AlReligion. Be not too severe and rough to- cibiades was condemned by the public juswards your patients, in prescribing remedies, tice of the state, and a decree made, that the how well compounded soever, too nauseous religious, the priests, and the nuns, should

[ocr errors]

revile and curse him, stoully refused to per-| by them, had not prevented it ; I say, it is form that office, saying, “That she was pro- probable this fury would have not been extin* lessed religious, to pray and to bless, not to guished, before this famous city, or a great part

curse and ban ! And if the person and the of it, had been turned into aslies. –If you place cau improve and aggravate the offence, as no doubt it doth before God and man, * The Chancellor alludes to the Insurrection methinks the preaching rebellion and treason of the Fifth Monarchy Men, under Venner, of out of the pulpit should be as much worse which Insurrection archdeacon Echard gives than the advancing it in the market, as the us the following account : “ While the affairs poisoning a man at the Communion would he of the nation seemed to be in peace and tranworse than killing him at a tavern : and it quility, in the beginning of the new year may be, in the catalogue of those sins which | 1660-1, there happened a strange and unparalthe zeal of some men declares to be against leled action in London, which strengthened the the Holy Ghost, there may not be any one belief of those secret Plots and Conspiracies more reasonably thought to be such, than a mentioned by the lord chancellor. This was Minister of Christ's turning rebel ag iinst bis occasioned by a sinall body of Filth-Monarchy prioce, which is a most notorious apostacy | Men, who hating all monarcliy, and the apfrom bis order ; and his preaching rebellion to pearance of it, had forinerly made an attempt the people as the doctrine of Christ, adding against Cromwell's government, but escaped blaspheiny and pertinacy to his apostacy, beyond expectation. The head of them was hath all the inarks by which good men are one Thomas Venner, sometime a wine-cooper, taught to know and avoid that sin against the who by the king's indulgence held a convenHoly Ghost. If you do not provide for the ticle in Coleman-street, where be, and others, thorough quenching these firebrands; king, used to preach to them out of the Prophecies lords, and commons, shall be their meanest of Daniel and the Revelations, and froin thence subjects, and the whole kingdom kindled into drew strange inferences, persuading their conone general flame.-My Lords and Gentle gregations · to take up arins for King Jesus, Den ; When the king spake last in this place ayainst the powers of the earth, the king, the before this day, He said, “When he should duke of York, general Monk, &c.' assuring

call the next parliament, he should receive them, . That no weapons formed against them * their thanks for what he had done since he should prosper, nor a hair of their heads be

had dissolved the last ; for be said, he should touched; for one should chace a thousand, * not more propose any one rule to bimself, in • and two put ten thousand to flight.' Upon « his actions or his councils, than this, What is which they got a Declaration printed, entitled, * a parliament like to think of this action, or of A Door of Hope opened ;' in which they * tbat council? and that it should be want of said, and declared, “That they would never * voderstanding in bin, if it would not bear sheath their swords till Babylon, as they that test :' He told you but now, . That he called monarchy, became a bissing and a

values bimself much upou keeping his word, curse, and there be lett neither Remnant, • upon performing all that he promises to his Son, nor Nephew: that when they bad led 'people. And he bath the worst luck in the captivity captive in England, they would go world, if he hath not complied with this pro into France, Spain, Germany, &c. and rather mise, and if his understanding hath failed him die tban take the wicked Oaths of Suprein it. It was in a very little time after the macy and Allegiance : that they would not Dissolution of that parliament, bis inajesty make any leagues with monarchists, but giving himself a few days to accompany bis * would rise up against the carnal, to possess royal mother to the sea side, the only time be the Gate, or the world, to bind their kings in hath slept out of this town near these 12 chains, and their nobles in fetters of iron.' months, that the most desperate, and prodi- And so to accomplish this heroic design, they gious Rebellion brake out in this city, that observed so much policy as to put it in exebath been heard of in any age; which conti-cution when the king was attending his mother nued two or three nights together, with the and sister to embark at Portsmouth, for iheir murder of several honest citizens. Let no man return into France. Accordingly on Sunday undervalue the treason because of the con- the 6th of Jan. being fully animated by the temptibleness of the number engaged in it. sermon, which hinted to them, that they had No man knows the number ; but, by the mul- been praying and preaching, but not acting titude of intercepted letters from and to all the for God, they sallied out well armed from counties of England, in which the tiine wars their Meeting-Ilouse, and marched to St. Paul's set down wherein the work of the Lord was to Church-Yard in the dark of the evening. Here be done, by the desperate carriage of the they mustered their party, amounting to above traitors theinselves, and their bragging of their 50, and placed their centinels for the time, one friends, we may conclude the combination of whom killed a poor innocent man, who upon reached very far. And in truth we may rea- demand had answered, · He was for God and sonably believe, that if the undaunted courage king Charles ! This gave an alarm to the city, and the indefatigable industry of the lord and the lord-ınayor, sir Rd. Brown, and the mayor, who deserves to be mentioned before trained-bands being upon the guard, some files king, lords, and commons, and to be esteemed of men were sent against them, wbom these

6

« PreviousContinue »