Imágenes de página

never heard she was inclined ? But if the fear of her delinquency, and that justice which the Protestants demanded on her, was any cause of her alienating the more, to have gained her by indirect means had been no advantage to religion, much less then was the detriment to lose her further off. It had been happy if his own actions had not given cause of more scandal to the Protestants, than what they did against her could justly scandalize any papist.

115. Them who accused her, well enough known to be the parliament, he censures for “ men yet to seek their religion, whether doctrine, discipline, or good manners;" the rest he soothes with the name of true English Protestants, a mere schismatical name, yet he so great an enemy of schism. He ascribes “rudeness and barbarity, worse than Indian,” to the English parliament; and “ all virtue” to his wife, in strains that come almost to sonnetting: how fit to govern men, undervaluing and aspersing the great council of his kingdom, in comparison of one woman! Examples are not far to seek, how great mischief and dishonour hath befallen nations under the government of effeminate and uxorious magistrates; who being themselves governed and overswayed at home under a feminine usurpation, cannot but be far short of spirit and authority without doors, to govern a whole nation.

116. “ Her tarrying here he could not think safe among them, who were shaking hands with allegiance, to lay faster hold on religion; and taxes them of a duty rather than a crime, it being just to

obey God rather than man, and impossible to serve two masters: I would they had quite shaken off what they stood shaking hands with; the fault was in their courage, not in their cause. In his prayer he prays that the disloyalty of his Protestant subjects may not be a hinderance to her love of the true religion; and never prays, that the dissoluteness of his court, the scandals of his clergy, the unsoundness of his own judgment, the lukewarmness of his life, his letter of compliance to the pope, his permitting agents at Rome, the pope's nuncio, and her jesuited mother here, may not be found in the sight of God far greater hinderances to her conversion.

117. But this had been a subtle prayer indeed, and well prayed, though as duly as a Paternoster, if it could have charmed us to sit still, and have religion and our liberties one by one snatched from us, for fear lest rising to defend ourselves we should fright the queen, a stiff papist, from turning Protestant! As if the way to make his queen a Protestant, had been to make his subjects more than halfway papists. He prays next,“ that his constancy may be an antidote against the poison of other men's example.” His constancy in what? Not in religion, for it is openly known, that her religion wrought more upon him, than his religion upon her; and his open favouring of papists, and bis hatred of them called puritans, (the ministers also that prayed in churches for her conversion, being checked from court,) made most men suspect she had quite perverted him. But what is it, that


the blindness of hypocrisy dares not do? It dares pray, and thinks to hide that from the eyes of God, which it cannot hide from the open view of man.


Upon his Repulse at Hull, and the Fate of the


118. Hull, a town of great strength and oppor. tunity both to sea and land affairs, was at that time the magazine of all those arms, which the king had bought with money most illegally extorted from his subjects of England, to use in a causeless and most unjust civil war against his subjects of Scotland. The king in high discontent and anger had left the parliament, and was gone towards the north, the queen into Holland, where she pawned and set to sale the crown jewels; (a crime heretofore counted treasonable in kings;) and to what intent these sums were raised, the parliament was not ignorant. His going northward in so high a chafe they doubted was to possess himself of that strength, which the storehouse and situation of Hull might add suddenly to his malignant party. Having first therefore in many petitions earnestly prayed him to dispose and settle, with consent of both houses, the military power in trusty hands, and he as oft refusing, they were necessitated by the turbulence

and danger of those times, to put the kingdom by their own authority into a posture of defence; and very timely sent Sir John Hotham, a member of the house, and knight of that county, to take Hull into his custody, and some of the trained bands to his assistance.

119. For besides the general danger, they had, before the king's going to York, notice given them of his private commissions to the Earl of Newcastle, and to Colonel Legg, one of those employed to bring the army up against the parliament; who had already made some attempts, and the former of them under a disguise, to surprise that place for the king's party. And letters of the Lord Digby were intercepted, wherein was wished, that the king would declare himself, and retire to some safe place; other information came from abroad, that Hull was the place designed for some new enterprise. And accordingly Digby himself not long after, with many other commanders, and much foreign ammunition, landed in those parts. But these attempts not succeeding, and that town being now in custody of the parliament, he sends a message to them, that he had firinly resolved to go in person into Ireland, to chastise those wicked rebels, (for these and worse words he then gave them,) and that towards this work he intended forth with to raise by his commissions, in the counties near Westchester, a guard for his own person, consisting of two thousand foot, and two hundred horse, that should be armed from his magazine at Hull. 120. On the other side, the parliament, fore

seeing the king's drift, about the same time send him a petition, that they might have leave for necessary causes to remove the magazine of Hull to the Tower of London, to which the king returns his denial; and soon after going to Hull attended with about four hundred horse, requires the governor to deliver him up the town: whereof the governor besought humbly to be excused, till he could send notice to the parliament, who had intrusted him. Whereat the king much incensed proclaims him traitor before the town walls, and gives immediate order to stop all passages between him and the parliament. (50) Yet he himself dispatches post after

(50) The particulars of this transaction, with the due degree of party colouring, are given by Clarendon. It seems that the order of Parliament for removing the magazine from Hull to the Tower of London, had among “ the gentlemen of Yorkshire,” caused much trouble ; wherefore, before the commands of parliament could be obeyed, they advised the seizing upon this magazine, which is softly expressed in Clarendon by “they did very earnestly beseech him, that he would take such course, that it might still remain there, for the better securing those, and the rest of the northern parts." Their advice was found palatable; for, “ hereupon he resolved to go thither himself; and the night before, he sent his son, the Duke of York, who was lately arrived from Richmond, accompanied with the Prince Elector, thither, with some other persons of honour; who knew no more, than that it was a journey given to the pleasure and curiosity of the duke. Sir John Hotham received them with that duty and civility that became him. The next morning early, the king took horse from York; and, attended with two or three hundred of his servants, and gentlemen of the country, rode thither ; and, when he came within a mile of the town, sent a gentleman to Sir John Hotham, (to let him know that the king would that day dine with him ;' with which he was strangely surprised, or seemed to be so. It was then reported, and was afterwards averred by himself to some

« AnteriorContinuar »