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abfolutely, but in the maintenance and purfuing thereof. If therefore no man elfe was ever fo mad, as to claim from hence an impunity from all juftice, why fhould any for the king, whofe life, by other articles of the fame covenant, was forfeit? Nay if common fenfe had not led us to fuch a clear interpretation, the Scots commiffioners themselves might boaft to have been our first teachers: who, when they drew to the malignance which brought forth that perfidious laft year's irruption against all the bands of covenant or chriftian neighbourhood, making their hollow plea the defence of his majefty's perfon, they were conftrained by their own guiltinefs, to leave out that following morfel that would have choked them, "the prefervation and defence of true religion and our liberties." And queftionlefs in the prefervation of thefe we are bound as well, both by the covenant, and before the covenant, to preferve and defend the perfon of any private man, as the perfon and authority of any inferior magiftrate: fo that this article, objected with fuch vehemence against us, contains not an exception of the king's perfon, and authority, to do by privilege what wickednefs he lift, and be defended as fome fancy, but an exprefs teftification of our loyalty; and the plain words without wrefting will bear as much, that we had no thoughts against his perfon, or just power, provided they might confift with the prefervation and defence of true religion and our liberties. But to these how hazardous his life was, will be needlefs to repeat so often. It may fuffice, that, while he was in cuftody, where we expected his repentance, his remorfe at laft, and compallion of all the innocent blood fhed already, and hereafter likely to be fhed for his mere wilfulnefs, he made no other use of our continual forbearance, our humbleft petitions and obteftations at his feet, but to fit contriving and fomenting new plots against us, and, as his own phrafe was, "playing his own game" upon the miferies of his people: of which we defire no other view at prefent than these articles of peace with the rebels, and the rare game likely to enfue from fuch a caft of his cards. And then let men reflect a little upon the flanders and reviles of thefe wretched priefis, and judge what modefty,


what truth, what confcience, what any thing fit for minifters, or we might fay reafonable men, can harbour in them. For what they began in fhameleffnefs and malice, they conclude in frenzy: throwing out a fudden rhapfody of proverbs quite from the purpofe; and with as much comelinefs as when Saul prophefied. For cafting off, as he did his garments, all modefty and meeknefs wherewith the language of minifters ought to be clothed, especially to their fupreme magiftrate, they talk at random of "fervants raging, fervants riding, and wonder how the earth can bear them." Either thefe men imagine themselves to be marvelously high fet and exalted in the chair of Belfaft, to vouchfafe the parliament of England no better style than fervants, or elfe their high notion, which we rather believe, falls as low as court-parasitism; fuppofing all men to be fervants but the king. And then all their pains taken to feem fo wife in proverbing ferve but to conclude them downright flaves: and the edge of their own proverb falls reverse upon themselves. For as "delight is not feemly for fools," much less high words to come from bafe minds. What they are for minifters, or how they crept into the fold, whether at the window, or through the wall, or who fet them there fo haughty in the pontifical fee of Belfast, we know not. But this we rather have caufe to wonder, if the earth can bear this infufferable infolency of upftarts; who, from a ground which is not their own, dare fend fuch defiance to the fovereign magiftracy of England, by whofe authority and in whofe right they inhabit there. By their actions we might rather judge them to be a generation of highland thieves and redfhanks, who being neighbourly admitted, not as the Saxons by merit of their warfare againft our enemies, but by the courtefy of England, to hold poffeffions in our province, a country better than their own, have, with worfe faith than thofe heathen, proved ingrateful and treacherous guests to their best friends and entertainers. And let them take heed, left while their filence as to thefe matters might have kept them blameless and fecure under thofe proceedings which they fo feared to partake in, that thefe their treasonous


attempts and practices have not involved them in a far worfe guilt of rebellion; and (notwithstanding that fair dehortatory from joining with malignants) in the appearance of a cointerest and partaking with the Irish rebels: against whom, though by themselves pronounced to be the enemies of God, they go not out to battle, as they ought, but rather by thefe their doings affift and become affociates!






Publifhed from the Author's Second Edition, printed in 1650.




Showing the transcendent Excellency of Milton's Prose Works.

To which is added,

An ORIGINAL LETTER to MILTON, never before published.

Morpheus, on thy dewy wing

Such fair auspicious visions bring,
As sooth'd great MILTON's injur'd age,
When in prophetic dreams he saw
The Tribes unborn with pious awe

Imbibe each virtue from his heavenly page.


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