Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

• it, and withall, remembring the late effusion of blood ( upon no other account than to secure religion, liberty < and property, and the freedom, power and privileges

of parliaments, as the bulwarks thereof; and that by < those very hands who now overturn the very founda• tions of all liberty, right and property, and of the be<ings of parliaments; and our very fouls trembling at

the loud cries of that sea of blood, and at the horrid • clamours of the many falsified oaths and promises ? made upon the same account.'- 'For the acquitting " therefore of their fouls, they folemnly protested and re

monstrated unto all the good people of England, that " the violent exclusion of the people's deputies in parliament, doth change the state of the people from free

dom into meer slavery; that such members of parlia« ment as shall approve the forcible exclusion complainsed of, or shall fit, vote and act, while many members 6 are by force shut out, are betrayers of the liberties of England, and adherents to the capital enemies of the

commonwealth; and that the present assembly at · Westminster, being under the awe and terror of the " Lord Protector, is not the representative body of England, nor can tax or tallage be juftly or lawfully raised (*) Whitby them (k).'

lock, po This remonftrance being printed was sent in great 651. ( white boxes some 1000 of them, to be left in several ? houses in London, and by them to be delivered out ' when called for.'- But the court having private intelligence of the matter, ' got four or five of the boxes

from the owners of the houses, and thereby prevented their being dispersed according to the intention of the (1) Thurloe,

sho vol. v. p. subscribers (!). I am sorry to add, that many of the volo

- 456, gentlemen, who put their hands to this admirable remonItrance, were but meer talkers, and foon found a way to ingrariate themselves with the Protector, take their seats in the house, and servilely adore him whom in such terrible colours they here blacken ! So uncertain are the signs of patriotism ! But in justice it must be said that there were others of them who were true to their principles, and above being worked on by fear or fattery. These at length, in virtue of an article in the Humble

Per

[ocr errors]

Possibly, however, some persons will firid

an

Petition and Advice, which required that those persons < who were legally chosen by a free election of the peo

ple to serve in parliament, should not be excluded from « sitting therein, but by judgment and consent of the • house whereof they were members,' were also admitted to their seats January 20, 1657, O.S. The oath taken by them on this occasion, was in these words. • I A. B. do, in the presence, and by the name of God • Almighty, promise and swear, that, to the uttermoft 6 of my power, in my place, I will uphold and main• tain the true reformed, protestant, christian religion, ( in the purity thereof, as it is contained in the Holy . Scriptures of the Old and New Testament, and en« courage the profession and professors of the same; and « that I will be true and faithful to the Lord Protector c of the commonwealth of England, Scctland and Ireland, * and the dominions and territories thereunto belonging, ( as chief magistrate thereof; and shall not contrive or • design, or attempt any thing against the person or " lawful authority of the Lord Protector ; and shall en

deavour, as much as in me lies, as a member of par&n:) Jour- liament, the preservation of the rights and liberties of

r the people (m):'- Thus was the wise taken in his own craftiness! Men under a deep sense of injury, were now admitted into the house, who, it might have been foreseen, would use their utmost endeavour to embarrass and perplex that government, which they had looked on and treated as usurped and tyrannical. It must not be omitted that this parliament was diffolved also in great resentment by the protector. - Thefe

were the high and arbitrary proceedings of Cromwell ; (m) Liberty proceedings which might easily induce a very ingenious and Right; writer to observe that he who hated the tyrant, adpart i. P. mired the tyranny (n). For what more odious in the 39. 8vo. Lond. 1747. reign of the conquered King, than these? What mote

opposite to the principles of liberty and freedom ? In the reign, or rather under the tyranny, of this fingle

6 hand,

als.

mited to observe mig

39. 30.

an apology for some of these (zzz) pro

ceedings,

• hand, the whole government and administration con• tradicted the national constitution ; but this contra« diction, was planned by a craft and policy as dexterous, ( as it was new; and carried on by a genius as bold, ' as cunning. Cromwell, when mounted to the head of s affairs, found the materials of liberty and freedom

rooted in the people, but saw, that these materials were without form, without orders, and without laws, to " bind and secure them. The people were powerful,

but ignorant and divided ; divided in opinion, and ig' norant of true government and real security. Cromwell therefore applied himself to the times; encou

raged, discountenanced, protected and oppressed by

turns, different fects and parties; and thus artfully • keeping them divided in their religious and civil views,

prevented the nation from uniting in any thing that

was natural and proper to freedom and liberty. The « fame army which had conquered for the people, he (o) Liberter • taught by mutilation, augmentation, largefles and pri- and Right,

vileges, to oppress the people (0).'— How far this parti, p. is a just representation, the foregoing notes will enable 39. the reader to determine.

(zzz) Some may find an apology in the situation and circumstances of the Protector.] ; Civil war is naturally .. more subject to rigour, says Mr. Afiham, than other

wars : because they who yesterday were enemies, would o be inhabitants always. The conqueror suspects that " these will be the first infringers of his new laws; the ( violation of which ought at the beginning to be fevere• lielt censured, as of dangerous consequence. " Wherefore for these reasons though the usurper thought (p) Confu

not of establishing himself in an absolute jurisdiction, fion 6 yet 'at last he will find himself obliged to secure his of Govern• conquest by the same means he obtained it. And men's, p. • Dido gave Æneas the true reason of the same case (0.97

\P). Lond. 16.9. Res

as and evolutions

7. Izmo.

ceedings, in the situation and circumstances

of

Res dura & regni novitas me talia cogunt
Moliri, & latè fines custode tueri.

VIRGI

- My cruel fate, And doubts attending an unsettled state, Force me to guard my coasts

YDEN

melor de la

This had long before, been taught by Mochiavel, in the following words: · When a prince would keep his « fubjects united and faithful, he must not heed the re

proach of cruelty ; for if he makes a few examples of • justice, he acts with less cruelty than those who, • through an excess of mercy, fuffer many disorders to • arise, which occasion rapine and murder. Now these ! are prejudicial to the whole society; whereas particular « executions, which are ordered by the prince, affect

( only particular men. Besides, all new governments (9) Prince, I are exposed to so many dangers, that it is impoffible 6:17; Con- for a new prince to avoid the scandal of being cruel.' fult allo A- .

la Thus Virgil makes Dido say, Houflay's notes on the Res, &c. (9) place.

If ever any prince upon earth had reason to act on these principles, it was Cromwell. Without some acts of severity what could he have done? How tottering would have been his throne? How precarious his life? The cavaliers, the presbyterians, the republicans, and the fifth-monarchy.men were all his foes, and even his moft intimate friends did not approve his management in a variety of refpects.- Mr. St. John, between whom and the Protector there had been the nearest union, highly disliked his fecting up himself. "He, [St. John) says Mr. Thurloe, was so far from advising Oliver to set up himself, that to the beft of my know

ledge and observation he was a great enemy to it, and .! hath often to me fpake against it. And as for that

called

of the Protector.-- Had he accepted the

king

[ocr errors]

called the Inftrument of Government, I never fpake with ( my Lord St. John, either about the whole, or any part of it (nor ever heard that any body else did) until some months after it was published in print, when going to visit him after a long and dangerous fickness,

h e told me, he had just then read our govern! ment; and taking it up in his hands, he cast it from

him in great dislike, and sayed, is this all the fruit the 4 nation Thall have of their warre? or words to that purpose ; and then tooke occasion to speak much a

gainst it. And as he had nothinge to doe in settinge I up this government, soe neither was there, soe Farr as 6. I knowe or have heard, any communication of coun• sells between Oliver and him, mediately or ymme• diately, touchinge the management of any part of the • publique affairs, my Lord St. John always refusinge to 6 meddle in any thinge, but what concerned his place (as a judge ; and in that he refused to proceed upon any • of the laws made under that government; for which • he was complayned of to the counsell, and it was im« puted to his example, that the judges refused to act • upon the last high court of justice. Nor was hee • (to my knowledge) advised with in the Petition and Advice. The truth is, that my Lord St. John was so • far from being a confident, that some, who loved and ! valued him, had someçhing to doe to preserve him (o) Thur« under that government (r). In a letter to Henry loe, vol. vii, Cromwell dated 16 December, 1656, he says, “His high-P.914. • neffe meetes with his tryals here at home of all sorts, ? beinge under daylye exercises from one hand or other " and I wish he may not have occasion to say, My fa• miliar friends, in whom I trusted, have lifted up the joy • heele against me (3).' It appears also from a variety

(s) Vol. v:

508. of Mr. Secretary's letters, that the Protector's govern. ment was clogged with great difficulties, and that the opposition made to it was herce and violent. In a letter to Henry Cromwell, then major-general of the army in

« AnteriorContinuar »