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proaches ! Sir Benjamin Rudyard, surveyor of the court of wards, sir Harbottle Grimstone, with a great many others of unquestionable duty and loyalty to the king, spoke the same language, and it deserves to be remembered, says lord Clarendon *, that in the midst of these complaints the king was never mentioned but with great honour; all the grievances being laid at the door of his ministers, and all hopes of redress being placed in his majesty alone. At the close of the debate, it was ordered that the root and branch petition should remain in the hands of the clerk of the house of commons, with direction that no copy should be delivered out; but after the throwing out of the bill to deprive the bishops of their votes in parliament, it was revived, and a bill brought in by sir Edward Deering (May 20, 1641] for the utter extirpating of the whole order, as will be seen hereafter.
It was in this debate that some smart repartees passed between the members ; Mr. Grimstone argued thus, that bishops are jure divino is a question : that archbishops are not jure divino is out of question ; now that bishops which are questioned whether jure divino, or archbishops which out of question are not jure divino, should suspend ministers which are jure divino, I leave to you to be considered. To which Mr. Selden answered, that the convocation is jure divino is a question ; that parliaments are not jure divino is out of the question; that religion is jure divino is no question ; now that the convocation which is questionable whether jure divino, and parliaments which out of the question are not jure divino, should meddle with religion which questionless is jure divino I leave to your consideration. In both which I apprehend there is more of a jingle of words than strength of argument +
But the house was unanimous for a reformation of the hierarchy, which was all that the body of the Puritans as yet wished for or desired. The ministers' petition was therefore committed to a committee of the whole house, and on March 9, they came to this resolution, “ that the legislative and judicial power of bishops in the house of peers is a great hinderance to the discharge of their spiritual function, prejudicial to the commonwealth, and fit to be taken away by bill; and that a bill be drawn up to this purpose.” March 11, it was resolved farther, “ that for bishops or any other clergyman to be in the commission of peace, or to have any judicial power in the star-chamber or in any civil court, is a great hinderance to their spiritual function, and fit to be taken away by bill.” And not many days after it was resolved, that they should not be privycouncillors or in any temporal offices.
While the house of commons were thus preparing to clip the wings of the bishops, they were not unmindful of the Roman Catholics ; these were criminals of a higher nature, and had a deep share in the present calamities; their numbers were growing, and their pride and insolence insufferable: they flocked in great num
Clarendon, vol. 1. p. 203. + Selden's argument is considered by bishop Warburton, as a thorough confu. tation of Grimstone's.-ED.
bers about the court, and insulted the very courts of judicature; the queen protected them, and the king and archbishop countenanced them as friends of the prerogative. Andreas ab Harbensfield, the queen of Bohemia's chaplain, advised his grace of a Popish confederacy against the king and the church of England ; but when the names of Montague, sir Kenelm Digby, Winter, Windebank, and Porter, all Papists, and officers about the court, were mentioned as parties, the whole was discredited and stifled. When the house of commons petitioned the king to issue out a proclamation for putting the laws in execution against Papists, it was done in so defective a manner, that the committee reported it would avail nothing; for in the clause which enjoins all Popish recusants to depart the city in fifteen days, it is added, “ without special licence had thereunto;" so that if they could obtain a licence from his majesty, or from the lords of the council, the bishop, the lieutenant, or deputy-lieutenant, of the county, then they were not within the penalty. Besides, the disarming of all Popish recusants was limited to recusants convicted ; so that if they were not convicted, a justice of peace could not disarm them. They observed farther, that many recusants had letters of grace to protect their persons and estates ; that instead of departing from London there was a greater resort of Papists at present than heretofore; and that their insolence and threatening language were insufferable and dangerous. A gentleman having given information in open court to one of the judges of the King's-bench, that in one parish in the city of Westminster there were above six thousand recusants, the committee appointed Mr. Heywood, an active justice of peace, to collect and bring in a list of the names of all recusants within that city and liberties ; for which purpose all the inhabitants were summoned to appear and take the oaths in Westminster-hall : but while the justice was in the execution of his office, and pressing one James a Papist to take them, the wretch drew out his knife and stabbed the justice in the open court, telling him, “ he gave him that for persecuting poor Catholics.” The old gentleman sunk down with the wound, but by the care of the surgeons was recovered, and the criminal taken into custody * This Mr. Heywood was the very person who, being commanded by king James I. to search the cellars under the parliament house at the time of the gunpowder-plot, took Guy Faux with his dark lantern in his hand, which lantern is preserved among the archives of Oxford, with Mr. Heywood's name upon it in letters of gold.
Dr. Grey is displeased with Mr. Neal for not informing his reader, how the king acted on this occasion ; especially as he says, according to the first edition, “the king favours them," i. e. the Papists. This is the marginal contents of the following paragraph, and the fact is there fully established. With respect to the attempt made on the life of Mr. Heywood, his majesty, it should be acknowledged, expressed a proper abhorrence of it, and “recommended it to parliament, to take course for a speedy and exemplary punishment” of it. For which the house returned their humble thanks. But this instance of royal justice is not sufficient to wipe off the charge of general and great partiality towards the Catholics. Rush. worth's Collections, part 3. vol. 1. p. 57.-ED.
The parliament, alarmed at this daring attempt, sent orders to all the justices of peace of Westminster, London, and Middlesex, requiring them to command the church wardens to make a return of the names of all recusants within their parishes, in order to their being proceeded against according to law; a few days after the like orders were sent to the justices in the remoter counties. The houses petitioned his majesty to discharge all Popish officers in garrisons or in the army, who refused to take theo aths of allegiance and supremacy, and to 6ll up their places with Protestants. March 16, they petitioned his majesty to remove all Papists from court, and particularly sir Kenelm Digby, sir Toby Matthews, sir John Winter, and Mr. Montague, and that the whole body of Roman Catholics might be disarmed. The answer returned was, that his majesty would take care that the Papists about the court should give no just cause of scandal; and as for disarming them, he was content it should be done according to law. So that their addresses had no other effect than to exasperate the Papists, the king and queen being determined to protect them as long as they were able.
There was at this time one Goodman a seminary priest under condemnation in Newgate, whom the king, instead of leaving to the sentence of the law, reprieved in the face of his parliament; whereupon both houses (January 29, 1640] agreed upon the following remonstrance:
“ That considering the present juncture, they conceived the strict execution of the laws against recusants more necessary than formerly,
1. “ Because by divers petitions from several parts of the kingdom, complaints are made of the great increase of Popery and superstition ; priests and Jesuits swarm in great abundance in this kingdom, and appear as boldly as if there were no laws against them.
2. “ It appears to the house, that of late years many priests and Jesuits condemned for high treason have been discharged out of prison.
3. “ That at this time the pope has a nuncio or agent in this city; and Papists go as publicly to mass at Denmark-house, and at St. James's and the ambassadors' chapels, as others do to their parish-churches.
4. “ That the putting the laws in execution against Papists, is for the preservation and advancement of the true religion established in this kingdom; for the safety of their majesties' persons, and the security of government.
5. “ It is found that Goodman the priest has been twice formerly committed and discharged ; that his residence now in London was in absolute contempt of his majesty's proclamation ; that he was formerly a minister of the church of England; and therefore they humbly desire he may be left to the justice of the Jaw."
To this remonstrance the king replied,
“ That the increase of Popery and superstition, if any such thing had happened, was contrary to his inclination; but to take off all occasions of complaint he would order the laws to be put in execution.
“ That he would set forth a proclamation to command Jesuits and priests to depart the kingdom within a month; and in case they either failed or returned, they should be proceeded against according to law.
“ As touching the pope's núncio Rosetti, his commission reached only to keep up a correspondence between the queen and pope, in things relative to the exercise of religion; that this correspondence came within the compass of the full liberty of conscience secured her by the articles of marriage; however, since Rosetti's character bappened to be misunderstood and gave offence, he had persuaded the queen to consent to his being recalled.
“Farther, his majesty promised to take care to restrain his subjects from going to mass at Denmark-house, St. James's, and the chapels of the ambassadors.
“ Lastly, touching Goodman, he was content to remit him to the pleasure of the house; but he puts them in mind that neither queen Elizabeth nor king James ever put any to death merely for religion ; and desired them to consider the inconveniences that such a conduct might draw upon his subjects and other Protestants in foreign countries."
How strange this assertion! Let the reader recollect the many executions of Papists for denying the supremacy; the burning the Dutch Anabaptists, for whom Mr. Fox the martyrologist interceded in vain ; and the hanging of Barrow, Greenwood, Penry, &c. in the reign of queen Elizabeth; let him also remember the burning of Bartholomew Legate and Edward Wightman, for the Arian heresy by king James I. (of all which, and some others, the commons in their reply put his majesty in mind); and then judge of the truth of this part of his declaration. Nor did the Jesuits regard the other parts of it, for they knew they had a friend in the king's bosom that would protect them, and therefore, instead of removing out of the land, they lay concealed within the verge
of the court. Even Goodman himself was not executed*, though the king promised to leave him to the law, and
Whitelocke informs us, that the king left him to the parliament: "and they (says bishop Warburton) would not order his execution. The truth of the matter was this; each party was desirous of throwing the odium of Goodman's execution on the other ; so between both the man escaped.” On this ground, his lordship exclaims, “ How prejudiced is the representation of our historian !" In reply to this reflection, it may be asked, Did it not shew the king's partiality and reluctance to have the law executed against Goodman, that he remitted the matter to the house? Did not the inflicting the sentence of the law lie solely with himself, as invested with the executive power? and yet he did not inflict it. Doth not this conduct justify Mr. Neal's representation ? nay, that representation is just and candid if it pointed to the reprieve only, which produced the remonstrance of the
though he himself petitioned, like Jonah the prophet, to be thrown overboard to allay the tempest between the king and his subjects. Such was his majesty's attachment to this people ! to the apparent hazard of the Protestant religion and the peace of his kingdoms, and to the sacrificing all good correspondence between himself and his parliament.
FROM THE IMPEACHMENT OF THE EARL OF STRAFFORD, TO THE RECESS OF THE PARLIAMENT UPON THE KING'S PRO. GRESS IN SCOTLAND.
It is impossible to account for the prodigious changes of this and the years immediately succeeding, without taking a short view of some civil occurrences that paved the
for them. In pursuance of the design of bringing corrupt ministers to justice, the parliament began with Thomas Wentworth earl of Strafford, an able statesman, but a most dangerous enemy of the laws and liberties of his country, whom they impeached of high treason November 11, 1640, and brought to his trial the 22nd of March following. The grand article of his impeachment* was," for endeavouring to subvert the fundamental laws of England and Ireland, and to introduce an arbitrary and tyrannical government.” This was subdivided into several branches, supported by a multiplicity of facts, none of which were directly treason by law, but being put together were construed to be such by accumulation.
The earl's reply to the facts consisted partly in excuses and evasions; with an humble acknowledgment that in some things he had been mistaken; but his principal defence rested upon a point of law, “ Whether an endeavour to subvert the fundamental form of government, and the laws of the land, was high treason at common law, or by any statute in force?” Mr. Lane the counsel
parliament. There would not have been any occasion for that remonstrance, had it not been for his majesty's attachment to men of that description.
The advocates of the king have considered his conduct towards Goodman as an amiable act of humanity; nay, as proceeding from a mind most sensibly touched with the “ gallantry," as it is called, of this man in petitioning to be made a sacrifice to the justice of the law, to serve his majesty's interest and affairs. Dr. Grey, and Nalson's Collections, vol. 1. p. 746.-ED.
When the earl of Strafford was impeached, the king came into the house of lords, and desired that the articles against him might be read ; which the lord-keeper ordered to be done, while many lords cried out, Privilege ! privilege! When the king was departed, the house ordered that no entry should be made of the king's demand of hearing the articles read, or of the keeper's compliance with it.-A MS. memorandum of Dr. Birch in the British Museum, and quoted in Curiosities of Literature, vol. 2. p. 186.- ED.