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cathedral and parochial service in the liturgy, and their passive obedience to the king;
"If he will quench" the army, and withdraw our forces from withstanding the piracy of Rupert,* and the plotted Irish invasion;
"If he will bless him with the freedom" of bishops again in the house of peers, and of fugitive delinquents in the house of commons, and deliver the honour of parliament into his hands, from the most natural and due protection of the people that entrusted them with the dangerous enterprise of being faithful to their country against the rage and malice of his tyrannous opposition;
"If he will keep him from that great offence," of following the counsel of his parliament, and enacting what they advise him to which in all reason, and by the known law, and oath of his coronation, he ought to do, and not to call that sacrilege, which necessity, through the continuance of his own civil war, hath compelled him to; necessity, which made David eat the shewbread, made Ezekiah take all the silver which was found in God's house, and cut off the gold which overlaid those doors and pillars, and gave it to Sennacherib; necessity, which ofttimes made the primitive church to sell her sacred utensils, even to the communion-chalice;
"If he will restore him to a capacity of glorifying him by
* Prince Rupert's insolent behaviour to Newcastle on the eve of the battle of Marston Moor, and the total want of foresight and ability on that celebrated field, expose him to our contempt. Alluding to the treacherous advance upon Brentford during treaty with the parliament, Warburton observes:-" He seems to have done it for no other reason than to break off the treaty. He was a soldier of fortune, and loved the service, and his whole conduct was conformable to that character. In a word, the king was ruined by his ministers in peace, and by his officers in war. But he who certainly most contributed to the ill-success of his arms was Prince Rupert; and this was one of the most mischievous as well as burbarous of his exploits. In this affair, if the king's sole purpose was to disengage Prince Rupert's horse on Hounslow Heath, why did he advance to Hounslow (a mistake for Brentford) with his foot, and force the barricades of the town, defended by the parliament's foot? I doubt he was not so clear in his purpose as his historian represents him." (History, &c. vii. 564.) Clarendon, who has always something civil to say of a tyrant, or a tyrant's instruments, calls Rupert and Newcastle "two great generals;" upon which Warburton remarks:-"These two great generals ought both to have been hanged, and where any discipline or law prevailed would have been so." (Notes on Clarendon's History, vii. 597.)-ED. 2H
doing" that both in church and state, which must needs dishonour and pollute his name;
If he will bring him again with peace, honour, and safety to his chief city," without repenting, without satisfying for the blood spilt, only for a few politic concessions, which are as good as nothing;
If he will put again the sword into his hand, to punish” those that have delivered us, and to protect delinquents against the justice of parliament;
Then, if it be possible to reconcile contradictions, he will praise him by displeasing him, and serve him by disserving him.
"His glory," in the gaudy copes and painted windows, mitres, rochets, altars, and the chanted service-book, "shall be dearer to him," than the establishing his crown in righteousness, and the spiritual power of religion. "He will pardon those that have offended him in particular;" but there shall want no subtle ways to be even with them upon another score of their supposed offences against the commonwealth; whereby he may at once affect the glory of a seeming justice, and destroy them pleasantly, while he feigns to forgive them as to his own particular, and outwardly bewails them.
These are the conditions of his treating with God, to whom he bates nothing of what he stood upon with the parliament : as if commissions of array could deal with him also. But of all these conditions, as it is now evident in our eyes, God accepted none, but that final petition, which he so oft, no doubt but by the secret judgment of God, importunes against his own head; praying God, "That his mercies might be so toward him, as his resolutions of truth and peace were toward his people." It follows then, God having cut him off without granting any of these mercies, that his resolution were as feigned as his vows were frustrate.
Upon the Army's Surprisal of the King at Holmby.
To give account to royalists what was done with their vanquished king, yielded up into our hands, is not expected from them whom God hath made his conquerors. And for
brethren to debate and rip up their falling out in the ear of a common enemy, thereby making him the judge, or at least the well-pleased auditor of their disagreement, is neither wise nor comely. To the king therefore, were he living, or to his party yet remaining, as to this action, there belongs no answer. Emulations, all men know, are incident among military men; and are, if they exceed not, pardonable. But some of the former army, eminent enough for their own martial deeds, and prevalent in the house of commons, touched with envy to be so far outdone by a new model,* which they contemned, took advantage of presbyterian and independent names, and the virulence of some ministers, to raise disturbance. And the war being ended, thought slightly to have discarded them who had faithfully done the work, without their due pay, and the reward of their invincible valour.
But they who had the sword yet in their own hands, disdaining to be made the first objects of ingratitude and oppression, after all that expense of their blood for justice, and the common liberty, seized upon the king, their prisoner, whom nothing but their matchless deeds had brought so low as to surrender up his person though he, to stir up new discord, chose rather to give up himself a captive to his own countrymen, who less had won him. This in likelihood might have grown to some height of mischief, partly through the strife which was kindling between our elder and our younger warriors, but chiefly through the seditious tongues of some false ministers, more zealous against schisms than against their own simony and pluralities or watchful of the common enemy, whose subtle insinuations had got so far in among them, as with all diligence to blow the coals. But it pleased God not to embroil and put to confusion his whole people for the perverseness of a few. The growth of our dissension was either prevented, or soon quieted: the enemy soon deceived of his rejoicing, and the king especially disappointed of not the meanest morsel that his hope presented him, to ruin us by our division. And being now so nigh the end, we
* Cromwell, of whom in his "Defensio Secundo Pro Populo Anglicano," he has drawn a character never surpassed by that of any commander celebrated in history. His sonnet, too, addressed to the Lord General Cromwell must here present itself to the reader's mind;
"Cromwell, our chief of men, &c.”—ED.
may the better be at leisure to stay a while, and hear him commenting upon his own captivity.
He saith of his surprisal, that it was a "motion eccentric and irregular." What then? his own allusion from the celestial bodies puts us in mind, that irregular motions may be necessary on earth sometimes, as well as constantly in heaven. That is not always best, which is most regular to written law. Great worthies heretofore, by disobeying law, ofttimes have saved the commonwealth; and the law afterward by firm decree hath approved that planetary motion, that unblamable exorbitancy in them.
He means no good to either independent or presbyterian, and yet his parable, like that of Balaam, is overruled to portend them good, far beside his intention. Those twins, that strove enclosed in the womb of Rebecca, were the seed of Abraham: the younger undoubtedly gained the heavenly birthright; the elder, though supplanted in his simile, shall yet no question find a better portion than Esau found, and far above his uncircumcised prelates.
He censures, and in censuring seems to hope it will be an ill omen, that they who built Jerusalem divided their tongues and hands. But his hope failed him with his example; for that there were divisions both of tongues and hands at the building of Jerusalem, the story would have certified him; and yet the work prospered; and, if God will, so may this, notwithstanding all the craft and malignant wiles of Sanballat and Tobiah, adding what fuel they can to our dissensions; or the indignity of his comparison, that likens us to those seditious zealots, whose intestine fury brought destruction to the last Jerusalem.
It being now no more in his hand to be revenged on his opposers, he seeks to satiate his fancy with the imagination of some revenge upon them from above; and, like one who in a drouth observes the sky, he sits and watches when anything will drop, that might solace him with the likeness of a punishment from heaven upon us; which he straight expounds how he pleases. No evil can befall the parliament or city but he positively interprets it a judgment upon them for his sake; as if the very manuscript of God's judgments had been delivered to his custody and exposition. But his reading declares it well to be a false copy which he uses; dispensing often to his own
bad deeds and successes the testimony of divine favour, and to the good deeds and successes of other men divine wrath and vengeance.
But to counterfeit the hand of God is the boldest of all forgery: And he who without warrant but his own fantastic surmise, takes upon him perpetually to unfold the secret and unsearchable mysteries of high providence, is likely for the most part to mistake and slander them; and approaches to the madness of those reprobate thoughts that would wrest the sword of justice out of God's hand, and employ it more justly in their own conceit. It was a small thing to contend with the parliament about the sole power of the militia, when we see him doing little less than laying hands on the weapons of God himself, which are his judgments, to wield and manage them by the sway and bent of his own frail cogitations. Therefore" they that by tumults first occasioned the raising of armies" in his doom must needs "be chastened by their own army for new tumults."
First, note here his confession, that those tumults were the first occasion of raising armies, and by consequence that he himself raised them first, against those supposed tumults. But who occasioned those tumults, or who made them so, being at first nothing more than the unarmed and peaceable concourse of people, hath been discussed already. And that those pretended tumults were chastised by their own army for new tumults, is not proved by a game at tic-tac with words; "tumults and armies, armies and tumults," but seems more like the method of a justice irrational than divine.
If the city were chastened by the army for new tumults, the reason is by himself set down evident and immediate, "their new tumults." With what sense can it be referred then to another far-fetched and imaginary cause, that happened so many years before, and in his supposition only as a cause? Manlius defended the capitol and the Romans
* This passage, and what follows, approaching the prophetic style of eloquence, display an awful grandeur, which nothing in our language can surpass. In the same spirit, but with far less vigour, Pope exclaims to the proud reasoner—
"Snatch from His hand the balance and the rod,
(Essay on Man. Book I. v. 121, seq.)—ED.