THE Ancient LIBERTY OF THE Britannick Church, AND THE Legitimate Exemption thereof from the Roman Patriarchate, Discoursed on four Positions, and asserted

By Isaac Basier, D.D. and Chaplain in ordinary to His late Majesty of Great Britain, CHARLS the First.

Three Chapters concerning the Priviledges of the Britannick Church, &c. Selected out of a Latin Manuscript, entituled, Catholico-Romanus Pacificus,

Written by F. I. Barnes, of the Order of St. Benedict, yet living [as is said] in the Roman Inquisition.

Translated, and published, for Vulgar instruction, By RI. WATSON.

London, Printed for Iohn Mileson, to bee sold by Elisha Wallis, at the Horse-shooe in the Great Old-Bayley, 1661.

TO My Worthy good Friend Mr. Richard Watson, &c. At Caen.


THe cause why the a­bundant satisfaction I inwardly conceived, at the receipt of your most obliging Letter, and reading of that excellent Diatribe of Doctor Basiers, which accompanied it (by Mr. Coventrie's fa­vour) [Page] according to your di­rection, hath no sooner thus dilated it self on Paper, hath been that ingenious young Gentlemans absence these Holy-daies, as hee himself will (I doubt not) for my further justification, testifie; I do therefore, Sir, with all gratitude, acknowledge both Dr. Basier's, and your ample favours, in this whole de­sign, no less relating to what is already so worthily per­formed, than to what is also so meritoriously projected [Page] and intended, as that I should do my self great wrong to re­fuse the annex of my name; where it should rather be my ambition to have it appear; But, on the other side, give mee leave, Sir, to suggest one caution, that you take heed (since you intend it should pass currant in Eng­land) the stamp of my name do not, in regard of my Re­lation to my Royal Master, (I will not say, adulterate the coin, or abate the intrinseck value, but) make it less wel­come [Page] to praeoccupated and misperswaded Readers. The Doctor's English Letter, to mee, I hold not only fit for the Press, as a testimony of the Authors eminent indu­stry and merit, but also as it is useful to the publick, in­deed, such a one, written with so Apostolical a spirit, as that I have been often heard to say, that I could never read it, but as a kinde of nine-and-twentieth of the Acts; Use therefore I beseech you, Sir, my name with all freedome, [Page] as you think good, you can­not entitle mee to any thing of this kind, which doth not add, as to my honour, so to my obligation to you; whose prone, and undeserved, fa­vour herein I shall, upon all occasions, ambitiously en­deavour to requite by some more solid acknowledge­ment, than this bare signing my self, Most Worthy Sir,

Your most humble and obliged servant Richard Brown.

To the Honourable, Sir Richard Brown, Clerk of the Right Honourable Privy-Council TO His Majesty of Great Britain, &c.


THough I took the liberty, some years since, to pub­lish the Latin Diatribe of the worthy Doctor, which I found in my Lord Hop­ton. Lords Cabi­net, after his decease; yet I could not so well presume to address it, as, I am confi­dent, [Page] intended by the Learned Author, unto your noble self; By my adventure in the Translation I have somewhat improv'd my Title, to a degree of propriety, and can so far ju­stifie yours, at least to what is mine, if you please to own a Pa­tronage of the work, under so much disadvantage, as the change of Language puts upon it. Your approbation of it in the design gives mee no full as­surance of your satisfaction at sight and reading; but your a­bility to judge the difficulty of [Page] Englishing such matters, in such a stile as they require, and your incouragement of all that aims at the publick good, yeeld mee hopes of your acceptance, and dispensation with whatso­ever unavoidable defects; That it was presented to you no sooner, you in part know the reason; until of late it hath been as hard to finde a Press for any Treatise that vindica­ted our Church, as for a De­dicatory Epistle to any Resi­dent of our King: But my long frustrated attendance for [Page] a Supplement from Mr. Ju­stell was the first Dilatory it had, and very lately, I think, it hath been discountenanced by an aversion, if no more, of some private Inquisitours, where you are, from all that hangs the Church of Eng­land on this hinge of Primitive Antiquity, or the Authority of Ancient Councils. It waits on you now, accompanied with somewhat I communica­ted not before, obtained by the friendly industry of that Mr. Thomas Coventry. ingenious [Page] Gentleman, who sent mee F. Barnes's Manuscript, whence I selected what (and more than what) the Doctor directs us to, though hee survives not to entertain the duplicate of my thanks, nor to take pleasure in the effect of his own pains, or mine, and to actuate further the most commendable quality, which happily discoverd it self very early in him, a singular complacency in accommoda­ting a private friend, and a generous promptitude to ad­vance any thing wherein pub­lick [Page] interest was concerned. I must needs, in gratitude, do him the honour of laying this leaf of Lawrel on his Hearse, which hath passed through several hands of our Reverend Clergy, and Gentry, Paris. where hee died, recommended, Sir, with your own serious condolence unto mine, That he acquired the character of a prudent ex­emplary young Gentleman in his life, and a very pious Chri­stian in the self-discerned ap­proaches to his death.

Sir, for printing the Doctors [Page] Letter, I should apologize (un­to him) if you lent mee not yours to countenance it; as your permitting it before to be read and copied, had signified your inclination to have some such right done to our Church, and him, which could not better be than in company with another work of his own, and what his approves. The advertisement you further gave mee, that his additional Relations were ad­dressed to Sir George Rad­cliffe, came too late for mee to recover them, by the means I [Page] used, out of his Papers; as the notice of his death did for some other Letters that had passed, to my knowledge, between my Lord, and Sir George, upon Theological points of contro­versie, wherein they differed, and which they discussed with some little earnestness, yet [...]; If the for­mer be not irrecoverably dis­posed of, Sir, you have now a fair opportunity to secure them; though, if the good Doctor himself be living, the late mis­fortune befallen the Country [Page] learned Dr. Basier Dr. Duncon Travel­lers, not to exercise their function where the du­ty of praying for the King should be prohibited; And a signal instance it was of Christi­an courage in our Reverend Author, when an Exile, to refuse the offer of a plentiful support, where that would not be allowed; yet it had been worth his journey to Smyrna, to convert the Consul, who now, I hope, hath more than the Merchants argument (which many times is more prevalent [Page] with men of business, than the Divines) I mean, that of In­terest, to convince him.

Sir, The benediction the Doctor gives to you and yours, in allusion to that which issued from the Ark to Obed Edoms house, I have a very particular obligation to suffrage in, though so long after the date of his; It was testimonium Dei faven­tis, saith Grotius; and [...], saith Phi­lo, of the Propitiatory, or cover to it, a testimony or symbole of Gods favourable and [Page] powerfull Mercy to the good man; not so restrained to the presence, but, even after its removal to the City of David, no doubt, he and his family were blessed by it. Sir, the pub­lick exercise of our Liturgy, is the Antitype we reflect upon, which, by Gods singular indulgence to you, hath, when chased out of the Temple, took refuge in your House, so that we have been forced many times to argue from your Oratory for a visibility of our Church; Your easie admission of mee to officiate in it for some months, and your endeavours to have such an e­stablishment made for mee, as whereby, in the most difficult of times, I might have had a comfortable subsistence, and a safe protection under your sacred roof, beside the other graces and civi­lities [Page] I had from you, exact this open retribution of my thanks; as the chara­cter of my holy Order, impressed on mee in your Chapel, may have con­signed mee, somewhat peculiarly, to be your Priest, when any emergent may require the Canonical performance of my Ministery within your walls; However, Sir, I shall not offer the holy Sacrifice at any of Gods Altars (which are now again erecting by a most miraculous mercy to his King and People) but I shall commemorate, in your behalf, the little emblem you pre­served of them, when they lay in their dust and ruines; nor shall the cloud of sacred incense ascend in the Sanctuary without the mixture of my breath, while I have it, to ask a return from Heaven, in showers of blessings to [Page] you, and your posterity, whose name, & memory, must be ever venerable to the English Clergy, as your person hath been most obliging to many of us, a­mong whom, though the unworthiest of them, I pray assist and honour with the continuance of your patronage,

Noble Sir,
Your most grate­ful, and very humble servant, RI. WATSON.


I Position.

THe rights of Patriarchates. Custome introduced; Councils confirmed; Emperours established.

II Position.

The Britannick Church, as being al­waies placed without the Suburbicaries of the Italick Diaecese, in the time of the Nicene Council, was in no case subject to the Roman Patriarchate, but enjoyed a Patriarchate of its own (as to the sub­stance of the thing) so as did the other Churches placed in the rest of the free Diaeceses.

III Position.

The Britannick Church was, with ve­ry good right, restored by her Sove­raign, to her ancient Ecclesiastical liber­ty, and that according to the Rule of the ancient Catholick Canons, by which


the word) The Metropolitick Rights Custome hath introduced, appears from the very words in the sixth Canon of the first great Nicen Council, wherein the confines of the three chief Patriarchs are determined, and the Origin of the Roman Metropolitan, as also the Alex­andrian, Antiochian, and those of other Provinces (which at that time did alike enjoy, each its own.) I say, the Origin of every one of these, is referred by the Council ad [...], to Custome; And moreover the Synod doth decree a Reli­gious Observation of that Custome in these solemn words, which the Church truly Catholick did perpetually reve­rence as an Oracle, viz. [...]. Let Ancient Customes be in force; commanding likewise [...]. That Churches should have their priviledges preserved. The same is clearly evident from the words in the second Canon of the first Constantinopo­litan Council, which most expresly com­mands each Church in every Diocess to be governed according to that Custome [Page 3] of the Fathers which had prevailed, the priviledges being preserved which by the Nicen Canons have been granted to the Churches.

The second part of the Position (viz. That Councils have confirmed the Rights of Patriarchates) is manifest both by the former Paragraph, and principally by that Illustrious Canon, which is the last save one of the Oecumenick Coun­cil at Chalcedon (that is the 206 Canon of the Universal Church) This very 28th. Canon appears in all Greek Copies, and although con­troverted by Pope Leo, whom it seem­ed to concern, yet we have seen, and read the very same Canon likewise in an excellent Latine Copy, the quadrate Characters whereof, and other marks of Antiquity, argue the Book to bee about one thousand years old. This Copy is in the rich Library of the famous [...]ustell, who heretofore gave mee the liberty of seeing it. There is also another ancient Latine Copy in the famous Library of the Noble Th [...] ­nus, wherein yet the same Canon is to bee read; so that wee may justly question the fidelity of the later Roman Copies, which have it expunged. neither the truth nor va­lidity whereof hath any one questioned, unlesse carried away violently with an affection to the [Page 4] Roman partie. The words of the said Canon are most emphatical. Behold the very marrow and vigour of it express'd.

First, The Catholick Ancients do as­sert, that they in this decree, [...], and eve­ry where follow the definitions of the Holy Fathers.

Secondly, That the Priviledges of the Elder Rome, they say not (are founded by Christ, or by Peter, or by Paul, but) are indulged by the Fathers, [...].

Thirdly, They adjust the reason of this Prerogative, and that not divine, nor indeed so much as Ecclesiastical, but meerly secular, to wit (as wee shall de­monstrate in the third Paragraph) the Imperial Authority, [...], because that City was Empe­resse of the rest.

Fourthly, The Fathers, moved by the same consideration, declare, That they (as much as lyes in them) [...], will communicate equal Priviledges [Page 5] to the most holy Throne of New Rome. Rightly judging (they are the words of the very Canon) that Constantinople, which they call New Rome, being honou­red both with Empire and Senate, may en­joy equal Priviledges with the Elder Rome; and in Ecclesiastical affairs, no less than she, be extolled and magnified, as her se­cond, or next unto her: hitherto the Ca­non, second, to wit, in order, but no way obnoxious in jurisdiction to Rome, as is plain by her equality with Rome, eve­ry way asserted in the Canon, and will afterward more clearly appear both out of the 8th. Canon of the first Ephesine Council, as also the ninth Canon of the Council of Chalcedon; both which Canons are cited and illustrated in the follow­ing Position.

The third part of the Position, viz. The Rights of Patriarchates Emperours have established, is confirmed both by reason and by practice; and that first ge­neral, then special likewise.

The general Reason, being as it were [Page 6] the foundation of this whole discourse deeper laid, is farther to be reached.

First, Therefore wee say, That Fa­thers of Families were at first both Princes and Priests. Moreover, as the supplicate of the whole Gallick peo­ple, to Acta inter Phi­lip. Pulch. & Bo­nifac. 8. King Philip the Faire, almost four hun­dred years since, very rightly observeth against Pope Boniface, Melchisedec is expresly said to be King before Priest, and consequently the King taketh not from the Priest, nor ought to acknowledge that hee owes unto the Priest his Crown, or the rights thereof (such as the external Regiment of the Church is proved to be after­ward.)

Secondly, Wee say, That by pro­pagation of Families, and their amplifi­cation into Cities, and Communities, the Oeconomick Authority in process of time, became politick.

Thirdly, Wee assert, That in the first institution of the Priesthood, Moses took away no part of the supream jurisdiction [Page 7] from the Politick Authority; Therefore the Royal Power remained the same it was before, both Legislative and Iudi­ciary, as well in Sacred as Civil Affairs. For Moses, as Deuter. 3 [...].5. King in Iesurun, was constituted by God himself, the keeper as well of Numb. 10.1. both Trumpets, as Tables; now what pertain­ed to Moses as King, is every Kings due. This very comparative Argument, as rightly consequent from Moses to Con­stantine the Great, after the revolutions of so many ages, Eusebius five or six times applies to establish the Imperial Authority about the Convocation and confirmation of the first Nicene Council.

Fourthly, As Moses, not Aaron, de­livered the Ceremonial Law: so, long after Moses, King David instituted the courses of the Priest, and Solomon thrust out Abiathar the High Priest.

Fifthly, When Christ inaugurated his Apostles, hee furnished them with great powers of his own, such as are the Administration of Sacraments, and [Page 8] power of the Keyes; but all that Christ bestowed on his Apostles cumulatively, nought at all privatively: for indeed our Lord Christ would neither by the Evan­gelical Priesthood, nor his whole first Advent, have any thing detracted from the Jurisdiction or Authority of the Ci­vil Powers; nor that Kings, because Christians, should have their Prerogative abated.

Sixthly, Wee say, That Kings, as Kings, ought to be the Li­turgick Officers of Christ;Rom. 13.6. and so far Kings in their degree may, yea ought to be Ministers of the Church, and, as it were, External Bishops of the Ec­clesiastick Government, (as You are Bishops as to the interiour, I, as to the exteriour. Constantine the Great said wisely of himself) That same the magnifi­cent Title of Christ himself, Prince of the Kings of the earth, seems to erect for all Kings of right, although in fact most of Kings are not, yet by vertue of this title they are obliged all to bee Chri­stians.

[Page 9]Seventhly, We say, That there are very many things pertaining to the external Polity of the Church, which although they belong properly and primarily to the King alone, yet in case of necessity, as they say, and secondarily are out of course devolved upon the Clergy. For instance, To call Synods; ordain Fasts or Festivals; distinguish Parishes into Diocesses, or Provinces; to fix and rati­fie the Hierarchical degrees of Bishops, so as this man is a Bishop, that a Primate, the third a Metropolitane; that this Bishop should be under the jurisdiction of that Metropolitane, and contrarily, up­on some weighty or lawful either occa­sion, necessity, or publick commodity of the Church, that this should be ex­empt from the other under whom hee was before. These, and very many of like sort, according to the various state of the Church, pertain both to the King and Priest. For those two most different times of the Church's con­dition ought not to be confounded, I mean of persecution, and peace. Because [Page 10] in time of persecution under Infidel Kings, so long as Princes are altogether and every way dis-joyned from the Church, and the Church from Princes, the divine order ceaseth, and the Royal Succession suffer's necessarily interrup­tion (I say interruption, not abolition) For so long the case is plainly extraor­dinary, and, while so, the Woman is in the Desart, and the Church supplies this de­fect of Princes as she can. As when the Husband is absent or sick, the Matron governs the Family. But the divine Po­sitive Order re-entring, the ordinary state of the Church returneth also; so soon as Kings resume the Christian Re­ligion, the partition-wall presently falls down, and then by due right Kings take again their exteriour power over the Christian Church. Otherwise we should say, that in order to the Government of the Church, there ought to be no dif­ference between Pharaoh and Moses, be­tween Nero and Constantine; nor, as to dominion in sacred Affairs and the right use thereof, that this Emperour communi­cates [Page 11] any more with the Church, than the other; which would be dissonant, not onely from right Reason, but also from holy Scripture. Therefore the Emperour, Isa. 49.23. so soon as hee becomes Christian, ought to ob­tain his restitution intire. And this in this Argument is the matter of right, or general Reason, which wee lay down as the Base of that right which belongs to the Emperour in establishing the external limits of the Ecclesiastical Government.

As to the matter of fact, or practice, that is both general or Catholick, and also special.

The general practice (beside the as­sumption of the second Argument which was proved before) consists in an induction of Councils, as well General as Provincial, all which as they suppli­cate from the Emperour himself the very convocation of councils: so do they sub­mit to the same Emperour every one of their decrees, even those in matters of Faith, which although, as to their in­trinsec Authority, they depend onely [Page 12] on the Word of God, and Truth it self; yet, as to their extrinsec Authority, they depend on the Imperial Sentence: but if those of Faith, how much more those which are onely of the bare Regiment of the Church, such as is the establish­ment of Patriarchates, lye all under the Imperial decrees? to wit, in this sense, That the Canon of the Church may have the force of a Law, that wholly proceeds from the Authority of the Prince. Thence is it, that every one of the Ancient Councils, all the Ancient Catholick Bishops (even the Bishop of Rome himself) present them alwaies to the Emperour to be supplied, amended, perfected; and so humbly petition from the Emperour, not a naked protection, or late execution; but an intire ratification and confirmation of every Council, without which, as to the external effect, they are to become unattired, void, and plainly of no force. Concerning this Truth, I appeal not onely to the Councils of Cavalion, Mentz and Toures, with the rest of the less sort; but [Page 13] I produce the very four general Coun­cils, concerning the first of which, viz. that of Nice, Eusebius expresly relates, that the Emperour [...], confirming the de­crees of the Synod, did fortifie them, as it were with his seal. I appeal also to the first Council of Constantinople, and the very Epistle of the Council to the Em­perour Theodosius, wherein all the holy Fathers petition the Emperour [...], &c. to have the Suffrage of the Synod confirmed. Yea, I appeal to Leo himself Pope of Rome, (whom I beleeve not to have been of the most abject spirit among those in that Pontificate) who in every one of his Lett. 23, 24, 25. Letters to three Em­perours, humbly petitions (not commands, much less decrees ▪ but) beseecheth, supplicates, that the Emperour would command, &c. But it may suffice to have declared these things, though somewhat at large, yet but by the way, to the evincing (by a general rule from the whole to the part) That the rights [Page 14] of Patriarchates introduced by Custome▪ confirmed by Councils, were established by Emperours, [...], which was the last lemme of our Position.

The same will appear more evidently in the special practice of the Catholick Emperours. For by what Authority Iu­stinian the Emperour ere­cted Iustiniana prima to a new Patriarchate, Achrida, now O­chrida. and in­dulged unto the same (they are the words of his eleventh Novel) the highest Priest­hood, the highest authority, and ordained that that should have the place (not onely Vicege­rency, Novel. 131. c. 3. but place) of the Apostolical See, so as it should be, saith Nicephorus, a Free Church, and Head unto it self, with full power, &c. (what could be said more amp­ly, what more magnificently of Rome her self?) so likewise by the same Imperial Authority, the very same Emperour Iu­stinian, Novel. 131. ch. 1. restored the African Diocess to its Ancient Patriar­chal Prerogative (which the invasion of the Vandals had interrupted) And so by [Page 15] his Imperial writ did hee constitute the Bishop of Carthage absolute Primate of whole Africk.

Lastly, This is the very thing which in the last age the Emperour of Britain King Henry the eighth by the like right imitated in his Diocess, viz. not by e­recting it anew (which yet in the case of Iustiniana prima Iustinian did) but one­ly restoring the same Britannick Diocess unto the Ancient Liberty it enjoyed in the Primitive times of the Ancient Oe­cumenick Councils, viz. the Nicene Can. 6. Constantinop. can. 2. Ephesin. can. ult. Nicene, Constantino­politane, and Ephesine (con­cerning which more here­after) And thus much more than needs, of our first Position, because that is, as it were, the foundation laid for the rest that follow.

The Second Position.
The Structure, or Proof.

1 The Britannick Church 2 as being al­way placed without the Suburbicaries of [Page 16] the Italick Diocess, 3 in the time of the Nicene Council, was in no case subject to the Romane Patriarchate, but enjoyed a Patriarchate of its own (as to the sub­stance of the thing) so as did the other Churches, placed in the rest of the free Diocesses.

TO the first wee must observe, that the Britannick Diocess was one of the thirteen, into which, according to the computation of some, the whole Roman Empire, Hierocl. Notit. Pro­vinciar. Occiden­tal. in Append. Geogr. Sacr. Carol. à S. Paul. edit. Pa­ris. 1641. but the very Praefecture of Rome it self, was an­ciently The ordinary ju­risdiction of the Praefecture over the City was con­cluded within the hundredth mile from the City. distributed. We must also observe that the Britannick Diocess had been one of the six Diocesses of the Western Empire, among which it appears to have excelled out of Tacitus, Spartian, and the other more famous Roman Hi­storians.

[Page 17]To the second, wee must mark, that by the Nicene Council every Province had its Metropolitick bounds set. Cer­tain it is, I say, that therein were fixed the Ecclesiastick limits to the three chief Metropolitanes, that is, to the Roman, A­lexandrian, and Antiochian, the right alwaies of the other Provinces being preserved, which were no way subject to these Metropolitanes. b It matters not whether wee call them Patriarchs, or Primates (the Origin of which terms, as the amplitude of their office, wee owe rather to the following ages) whether wee call them Exarchs, as the Council of Chalcedon, Can. 9. or Arch-Bishops, as Iustinian promiscuously, or Metropo­litans, [Page 18] or onely Bishops, as this very Ni­cen Council, all is one, so long as it ef­fectually appears, That by Patriarchs, wee understand them to whose both or­dination and jurisdiction the Provinces of intire Dioceses were attributed, and who had the hearing and judging of all Ecclesiastick causes in the last reference, so that, according to e Iustinian the Em­perour, yea according to the very Oecume­nick Council of Chalcedon from the Pa­triarchal sentence out of Council was al­lowed no regular appeal. Wee call, with the Lawyers, those Suburbicary Provin­ces, which were concluded in one Dio­cese, the Law term, because of the ma­nifest coextension of both, being tran­slated from the Republick to the Church.

[Page 19]Thirdly, Let us grant (which yet is undetermined) that the Roman Patriarch had obtained an extraordinary or Pa­triarchal Jurisdiction over all the Pro­vinces of the Italick Diocese, as his Sub­urbicaries, and that they were those ten in number, viz. the three Islands of Si­cilie, Corsica, and Sardinia, and the seven other placed on the Continent. Which ten Provinces some do assign to the same Diocese, induced by that ancient Obser­vation, from which it appears, that the Ecclesiastick Jurisdiction of the Dioce­ses, both for the beauty and benefit of order and unity, as also to insinuate a mutual harmony (which ought, as much as may be, to be cherished between the Church and Republick) in a certain accu­rate imitation, was so coextended with, and adjusted to, the temporal Regiment of the secular Vicars, that the Ecclesi­astick Patriarchates or Primacies were not enlarged farther than the temporal Jurisdiction of the Vicars, that is, to the limits of those Dioceses, the Cities whereof, in which resided the Vicars, [Page 20] were Metropolies, where was fixed the Praetory it self, which was the highest Tribunal of all causes, and all appeals likewise in the Provinces subject there­unto. The very same government of the Church was retained for the conser­vation of Ecclesiastick Unity, unto which was had special regard by that singular and excellent subordination of the lesser Clerks to their Bishops in every City; of the Bishops unto their Metropolitanes in every Province; and of the Metropoli­tanes to their Patriarchs in every Dio­cese. But in case either of Heresie or Schism, the Church was succoured by Councils, either Provincial, which were rightly called by the Metropolitane, or Patriarchal, which by the Patriarch, or lastly general, which by the Em­perour himself. Now as this premised general coextension of the Ecclesiastick Jurisdiction with the Civil Govern­ment appears by comparing the second Canon of the Constantinopolitan Coun­cil with the very Code of the Provin­ces: so that particular definition of the [Page 21] Italick Diocese may bee fetcht out of Ruffinus d the best Interpreter of that very sixth Nicene Canon, who expresly mentions the Suburbicaries in that place, where he professedly interprets the said Canon; who being both an Italian, and near the age of the Nicene Council, was able clearly to distinguish the proper li­mits (as then fixed) of the Italick Pa­triarchate. Howsoever it is evident to any man, that even in this sense, from the Jurisdiction of all those ten Italick Provinces, as ‘— Penitus loto divisos orbe Britannos.’

From the whole world the Britains were divided.

To the fourth, viz. That in the time of the Nicene Council the Britannick Diocese was subject neither to the Ro­man Patriarchate (as some of yesterday, [Page 22] grosly suppose) nor yet to any forein Jurisdiction; shall presently appear, when wee shall shew, That the Britannick Churches enjoyed their own Primate or Patriarch. That being all matter of fact, is to be fetched out of the Britannick history it self, which is written by Vene­rable Bede, the chief Historiographer of the said Britain, and a Catholick Priest too. In him therefore wee may read the huge difference of the Britannick Church (howsoever e most Catholick in other things) from (that I say, not with the [Page 23] same Bede, contrariety to) the Roman Church, both in the different observa­tion of Easter, wherein the Britains fol­lowing the use of Anatolius the Constan­tinopolitane Patriarch, and not that of the Bishop of Rome, conformed them­selves to the Eastern, not Western Churches, as also in the different ad­ministration of holy Baptism, and in many other things (witness Augustin himself, who was Legate of Gregory the Roman Bishop) The same also appears out of the constancy of the Britains in their rejection of the said Augustin, whom although sent Express by the Ro­man Pontifie, that hee might preside o­ver the Britains; yet, saith Bede, All the Britain Bishops refused to acknowledge him for their Arch-Bishop, as who had an Arch-Bishop of their own; whosoever hee then was, whom it would not bee hard to know from the prerogatives of his Me­tropoly, and priviledge of his seat in Councils. As for the state of the Bri­tannick Churches, and their partition, it will bee worth our pains to search it in [Page 24] the undoubted Records of the British Antiquity.

From the very time therefore of Constantine the Great, and so of the Nicene Council, all Britany was in times past canton'd into three onely Provinces, Beda Antiq. Bri­tan. p. 11. & pas­sim. over which were, after the Ro­mane manner, in temporal affairs, three Romane Proconsuls or Prae­sidents; as likewise in spiritual there prae­sided as many Arch-Bishops common­ly called Metropolitans from their Metro­polies, or principal Cities wherein were resident both the secular and sacred Pro­vost, or Metropolitane. The first of these three Provinces was called Maxima Cae­sariensis, the Greatest Caesarian [or in­verted if either way to be Englished] the Metropolitan whereof was the Bishop of York. The second was called Bri­tannia primo, the first Britain, the Me­tropolitane, of which was the Bishop of London. The third was Britannia secun­da, the second Britain, called the Legiona­ry Metropoly, and thereof the Is [...]ane [Page 25] Bishop, or Bishop of Ca [...]ruske in the Tract or County of Monmouth. That was the state of this Metropoly from Lucius un­to King Arthur, in whose time the Me­tropolitical dignity was transferred to the Bishop of St. Davids, to whom were sub­ject, as Suffragans, the Welch Bishops, until in the time of Henry the first, or as some will have it, Henry the third, the same Metropolitane was reduced under the obedience of the Arch-Bishop of Canterbury.

Now whatsoever either in the Pro­vinces themselves, or Churches, was afterward irregularly parjeted from a­broad, that cannot prejudice the Impe­rial authority, to which belongs, as we have before shewed, both to dispense the external Government of the Church, and to establish the jurisdicti­ons which it limits. Much less can a Usurpation, advanced by force or fraud, derogate from the Oecumenick decrees of the Ancient Fathers, or frustrate so many most grave Canons, venerable for their age, published thereupon, such as is [Page 26] the premised 6th Canon of the Nicene Council for the Ancient Prerogatives, and the second Canon of the Constanti­nopolitan, by which is charged, That no Bishop approach any Churches situate with­out his bounds (which most grave Canon I wish the Bishop of Rome had religiously observed, the Peace of the Church had been better assured) the Council goes on, commanding, that all bee kept ac­cording to what was defined at Nice. And that these may not seem too remote from our Britain, the Canon concludes in a general Sanction, That all things ought to be done according to that custome of the Fathers in force. But that such had been the custome of the Britains, as to have all weighty affairs Synodically dis­puted within themselves, appears out of Bede. Bed. Hist. l. 2. c. 2. Moreover, to have been in use, that the Bishops of that Nation were consecrated by one Bishop, Baronius himself some­where observes.

At that time truly so beautiful was the state of affairs in Britain, until some [Page 27] ages after the Council of Nice, Augustin the Monk was sent by Gregory, who, what hee could not by right, first by fraud, then by the armed assistance of Ethelbert, and his new-converted Anglo-Saxons, indeavoured to force the Ca­tholick Bishops of Britain to acknow­ledge and receive him for their Arch-Bishop; but they couragiously replied, That they could not abandon their ancient Priviledges, and subject themselves to the mandates of strangers. f That any other custome had been in the sacred Go­vernment of the British Church, no man can ever evince out of genuine Anti­quity. And so much concerning the second Position.

The third Position bearing proportion to the second.

The Britannick Church was 1 with very good right 2 restored by her Soveraign to her Ancient Ecclesiastical Liberty, 3 and that according to the Rule of the Ancient Catholick Canons, by which was con­firmed for the future the intire Liberty of the Churches.

TO the first, whatsoever the Rebels at this day on either side falsely al­ledge to the contrary, it appears out of very many Histories, and the Authen­tick Chronicles, that the Kingdome of England hath been an Empire, and so ac­counted in the world, which was go­verned by one supream Head, or King, both in Spirituals and Temporals, and that wholly independent of any forein Prince or Supremacy whatsoever on earth.

This is the very marrow expressed from the formal words of a statute at [Page 29] large set out to this purpose by the As­sembly of Parliament, that is, of the whole Kingdome in the 24th. year of King Henry the eighth, chap. 12. At which time the three Estates of Eng­land, to wit, the Clergy, Nobility and Commons, willing to recall the Ancient Rights of the Kingdome, taken away ra­ther by force and power, than any Rule of the Canons, decreed to have contro­versies ended within the bounds of the Kingdome, without any appeal to forei­ners (which indeed is one principal pre­rogative of a Patriarchal Jurisdiction.)

But upon this whole Britannick affair, the thing most worthy our observation is, That this decree, for the liberty of the Britannick Churches was not intro­ductive of a new Law, as in spight to the Kings of Britain new upstarts calum­niate, who are either ignorant of, or op­posite to, the Britannick priviledge: but the said decree was onely declarative of an Ancient Custome, which had con­stantly prevailed in England, eight hun­dred years since, and so many ages be­fore: [Page 30] yea and was intirely renewed as often as occasion required. Concerning this most g just assertion, wee attest the ample Margin filled with a long train of the Ancient Britannick Statutes, which [Page 31] [Page 32] the ingenuous Reader may be pleased at leisure to view and consider. Whence by induction of parts will appear, that this was no new enterprize, nor a single irregular act of Henry the eighth alone; but that long before the time of Henry the eighth, this had been the ancient Su­premacy of all the Kings of England, over all persons, and in all causes whatsoever, so well Ecclesiastick as Temporal.

Wee proceed to the second, and prove the Ancient state of the Church to have been such, out of the undoubted Monuments of the Britannick Church; where first wee may collect out of the fore-cited Hist. Eccl. l. 1. c. 27. Et 2. c. 4. ad annum 883. Venerable Bede, as also Hist. l. 36. Henry of Huntington no less than the rest, That Augustine the Monk stirred up Ethelbert King of Kent against the Bishops of the Britains, because they in behalf of the Ancient Bri­tannick Liberty denied to subject them­selves and their Churches unto the Roman Legate. Yet further, Huntington adds, that neither the Britains nor Scots (that [Page 33] is the Irish) would therefore communicate with the English, and h Augustine their Bishop, more than with Pagans; the rea­son was, because Augustine did seem to deal uncanonically with them, by constrain­ing them to receive him for their Arch-Bishop, and subject themselves to the man­dates of strangers; when as the Ancient manners of the Britannick Church requi­red, that all things should be synodical­ly transacted within themselves. Hence is it, that the Britains did alwaies cele­brate their Ordinations within them­selves, and this is also another hono­rary priviledge of the Patriarchal Juris­diction, and concerning this wee again appeal unto Bed. Histor. Eccl. l. 3. c. 3. Bede in his history of Aidan the [Page 34] Bishop; yea to Baronius himself, where quoted before, who relates, out of Lan­franke, the custome of the Kingdome to have been, that the Bishops thereof were consecrated by one single Bishop; but that these ancient Customes of Britain were abrogated by the force rather, and power of the Anglo-Saxons, than by a­ny Synodical consent. The said Lib. 3. c. 36. Bede testifieth the same, where hee relates that Colman the Bishop (Finanus's Successour in the Pontificate of the Northymbrians) with his fellows, chose rather to desert Episco­pate and Monastery, than their Ancient Manners. Which fact of Bishop Colman is worth observation, lest, what some falsely pretend, onely the Monks of Bangor may seem to have rejected Au­gustin, against whom, charged upon them, this was the Legitimate defence of the ancient Britains, these being their very words out of Lib. 2. c. 2. Beda be­fore, That they could not abandon their ancient manners, without the consent and license of their own Bishops. [Page 35] And truly this answer of the Britains was grounded on very irrefragable, very Catholick reason, and that because this unwonted subjection had contradicted the sixth Oecumenick Canon of the Council of Nice, which expresly com­mands the Ancient Manners to bee kept. This had also destroyed the eighth Ca­non of the first Ephesine Council, by which first such usurpation, to wit, in the case of the Cyprian Church, is called in Hypothesis, a thing innovated beside Ecclesiastick Constitutions and Canons of the Holy Fathers, which, as common diseases, therefore needs a greater remedy, be­cause the dammage is greater which it brings. Secondly, Therefore the Holy Synod (in Thesi, as they say, or in ge­neral) commands, that that should be ob­served in all Dioceses and Provinces wheresoever (Behold the Authentick Charter of the Britannick Liberty.) Thirdly, That no Bishop (the Roman not excepted) [...] should in­vade any other Province, which from the beginning hath not been under his, or his [Page 36] predecessours jurisdiction (as, for instance, did Augustin the Monk.) Fourthly, The Oecumenick Canon goes on, and a hun­dred and fifty years, more or less, before Augustins invasion of the Britannick Church, as it were fore-seeing it, by provision declares it to be void, in these most weighty words. That if any one shall invade it, and make it his own by force, hee shall restore it. Fifthly, Yet further (for the following words are most emphatical, and which, as by and by shall appear, seem chiefly to regard the Roman Bishop himself.) The Holy Sy­nod warneth, that the Canons of the Holy Fathers be not passed by, nor that the pride of secular power creep in under the specious pretence of administring sacred Affairs, and by little and little unawares wee lose that Liberty which our Lord Iesus Christ, the deliverer of all men, hath purchased for us by his blood. Yea the Holy Oecumenical Synod, for the grea­ter enforcement, yet again repeats the decree. It hath therefore pleased the Holy and Universal Synod [to decree] that to [Page 37] every Province be preserved pure, and in­violate, the rights which it had from the ve­ry beginning, according to ancient Cu­stome, every Metropolitane (and so the Britannick) having liberty to take Copies of the Act for his Security. Yet the Holy Synod concludes according to its Oecumenical Authority: If any one shall bring any Sanction (every word is most general) repugnant to those which now are defined, it hath pleased intirely the Holy and Universal Synod, that it bee void. Hitherto for the Liberty of the Churches [extends] the most express Canon of the Catholick Church, which after the matter of fact first declared, completes the matter of right in favour as well of the Britannick, as Cyprian Church. For since, as out of the prae­mises appears, the Britannick Church in the West enjoyed the same priviledge wherewith the Cyprian Church was ho­noured in the East, why may not shee lawfully resume what is her own, in time of peace, which was taken from her, by tumult and force, in a turbulent time of the wars?

[Page 38]The sum of the whole most Inculent Canon is this; The ancient and truly Catholick Church would have the rights of every Church preserved, not taken away, and if they be taken away by force or fraud, what Patriarch soever doth it, his fact is declared void, and moreover hee is commanded to restore that Province which he hath made his own.

Now that this Canon was establisht in a tacite opposition to the Roman Bishop himself, is, not obscurely, to bee collected out of the Tom. 2. Ephesin. Synod. append. 1. cap. 4. Ep. 18. Acts of that Council; for it is evident from them, that the Canon prevailed, notwithstanding the Epistle of Innocent the first to Alexander, wherein the Roman Bishop declared, that the Cyprians were not wise according to Faith, if they subjected not themselves to the Patriarch of Antioch, when as, not­withstanding, wee see the decree of the Universal Synod plainly contrary to the Papal sentence, wherein namely it was [Page 39] judged that this was attempted by the Antiochian, beside the Canons, and that therefore all the letters brought by him against the Cyprians were of no effect. Hitherto the third Position. The last followeth.

The Fourth and last Position.

The Britannick Church persevering in its Primitive Exemption from the Roman Patriarchate, so far is it from that it ought, or can be therefore called Schis­matical, that rather in the very same respect (before truly Catholick Iudges) that Church appears both to have been, and yet really to bee, by so much the more every way Catholick, by how much that Church, more than others, is an Assertour of the whole Ancient Catholick Liberty, which by so many sacred Canons of four General Councils, the Nicene, Constantinopolitan, Ephesine and [Page 40] Chalcedonian, the Catholick Fathers have decreed, and antecedently decla­red to remain ratified for ever against all future usurpations.

SInce the time that the ancient Liber­ty of the Britannick Church, was by right resumed (as before) with the so­lemn consent of the whole Kingdome, the i Britannick Church (now truly Ca­tholick in the rest) can by a like right re­tain the same without the loss of her [Page 41] Catholicism, without any brand of Schism, much less of Heresie. We do willingly owe the proof of this asser­tion to Barns, a most learned and peace­able man, at the same time [when hee writ it] a Roman Priest; a Monk in the order of the Benedictins, a Britain, and therefore no unfit Arbiter of this Bri­tannick Cause.

First, Therefore, whether the causes of our withdrawing were sufficient, is no way a matter of Faith, but wholly matter of fact, whereto the Roman Bishop himself (that I may speak the truth as gently as may be) was at least accessory, and therefore can be no com­petent Judge of the cause, but rather, if the business would bear a controver­sie, it were to be presented to a truly Oecumenical or general free Council, rightly and legitimately called. Now so far is it from that the Britannick Church even refused to present her self, or her cause, before the Tribunal of such a Council, that the Britannick Church ra­ther holds a general Council to be above [Page 42] any Patriarch (even the Roman himself) according to that pair of Councils held at Basil, and Constance. This the Britan­nick holds together with the Gallican Church, a renewing of the ancient con­cord with which Church [...], so far as conscience permits, were even at this time much to be wished, it being k manifest that above a thousand years since, much friendship passed between the Gallican and the Britannick Church, even at that time when the Britannick Church did not communicate with the Roman: and certainly if both parties would mu­tually understand one the other, with­out prejudice, and that of the two, which is in the extream, would remit of its rigour, that consent of the Britannick Church with the Gallican would not be so improbable as it seems at the first aspect to them that are ignorant of both, or either. But this onely by the way. To our purpose again. Wee say the [Page 43] Britannick Church doth so reverence the General Councils, that she hath provided by a special Statute, That not any one en­dued with spiritual jurisdiction, shall declare or administer his Ecclesiastical censures, or adjudge any matter or cause to be heresie, but onely such as before had been determined, ordered, or adjudged to be heresie by the au­thority of the Canonical Scriptures, or by the first four General Councils, or any of them, or by any other General Council.

This was in the Reign of Queen Eliza­beth the very Catholick sense of the Bri­tannick Church, and her due esteem of General Councils, which the old Parlia­ment openly testified in the solemn As­sembly of that whole Kingdome, for we disdain to make mention in this place of the Cabals or Conventicles now adayes, which reign in the turbulent rebellious State of that Church and Republick: for those swarms of Sects are onely the Cancers and Impostemes of that lately famous Church, which no more belong to the sacred body of the Britannick Church, than a wenn doth to the body [Page 44] natural: And truly if heretofore the great Mother of us all, the Catholick Church seemed almost universally to be utterly swallowed by a sudden deluge of l Arrianism, what wonder is it if the Britannick Church, but one of her daugh­ters, lye under the same fate for a time? This for the first point.

Concerning the second, it is to be ve­ry much observed, That the Britannick Church, at the time of her with­drawing, was not truly in fact, much less by right, subject to the Bishop of Rome, having been — years before her reformation under Edward 6. altogether exempt from the Roman Patriarchate, to wit, by the Imperial Authority, and by that of Prince Henry the eighth, whom to have been impowred to do it by right appears before in the first Position.

But what occasion soever of the withdrawing at that time shall bee [Page 45] pretended, it cannot prejudice the Royal Right, or any way derogate from the ancient Custome of the Britannick Church. Nay, the British Nation could not have opposed either of the two, without being hainously guilty both of Rebellion and Schism, especially since that whole business of the Church's restitu­tion was transacted with the express consent of the Britannick Clergy (then Romane) a Provincial Council of which alone, in defect of a General▪ was at that time the supream meerly Ecclesiastick tribunal of the Britannick Nation, where­unto, onely, the Britannick Church ought to be, or indeed could be subject, because in that article of time, no Coun­cil, truly general, sate. As for that of Trent, which afterward followed, it was at highest onely Patriarchal, to which consequently the Britannick Church, before exempt by lawful authority from the Romane Patriarchate, was no way subject. Whereas therefore the Britannick Church can be said to have opposed it self to no lawful Ecclesiastick [Page 46] Authority at all, which notwithstanding inseparably is of the essence of Schism, certain it is, that Church is no way Schismatical, but, on the contrary side, the Britannick Church, according to the singular moderation and Christi­an love she perpetually sheweth toward all Christians, as she keeps off from her external Communion no Christian of what ever communion he be (so that he hold the foundation intire) but (unless a most just excommunication put a bar) opens her Catholick bosome, and draws forth her holy breasts to any genuine Nursling of the Catholick Church; so as well in Faith, as the internal Commu­nion of Charity, as likewise in the ex­ternal Communion of the Catholick Hierarchy and Liturgy, yea and Cere­monies also, she yet cherisheth and pro­fesseth an undivided peace and consent with the Catholick Church, from which the Britannick Church never did, nor e­ver will separate her self, as being al­waies most tenacious of the whole truly Catholick foundation. For one thing it [Page 47] is (on the hinge of which just distinction is the whole state of this great contro­versie turned) one thing, I say, it is, to separate her self from the Catholick or Universal Church, and to form to her self a Congregation or Religion apart different from the Catholick Church, as in times past the Donatists did; another, not to communicate in all with some one particular Church (as for instance, the Latine) or rather to abstain from the external worship which is used by some persons, in some places, under an ex­press Protestation (for thence is sprung the modest and innocent title of Prote­stants) under Protestation, I say, so soon as the occasion of scandal should be taken away, of reconciliation, and under a vow (not so much out of any absolute neces­sity, as for publick peace, and Catho­lick unity's sake) of returning to the Communion of that particular Church, from which that the Protestants were estranged, yea in the latter age violently driven away by thunder, and sword, and fire, is better known out of history, than [Page 48] to want any proof, or further amplifica­tion.

It appears therefore out of the Pre­mises, that the Britannick Church con­stituted in this, as I may say, her pas­sive state of separation from the com­munion of the Bishop of Rome, is wholly free from all blemish of Schism, by rea­son that the m Bishop of Rome himself first of all interrupted Christian com­munion with the Britannick Church, and yet further inderdicteth the Britannick Church his communion, and in that a­gain the Pope extolleth himself above a General Council lawfully called (unto which the Britannick Church hath ever attributed the decisive judgement) while in his n Bull of the Lords Supper, he forbids an appeal from himself to a ge­neral Council.

[Page 49]To all these add (what in conclusion is principally necessary) to wit, that the Britannick Church, after the very sacred Canon of the Scriptures (such as is de­fined in the Conc. Laodic. Can. ult. ancient Councils) adheres closely unto tradition truly uni­versal, as well Ecclesiastick as Aposto­lical, both which lean on the testimony or authority of the truly Catholick Church, according to that in Vincentius of Lirinum, his fam'd [...], or essay of ancient Catholicism, Quod ubique, [Page 50] quod semper, quod ab omnibus, &c. That which every where, which alwaies, which by all, &c. It appeareth that the Britannick Church bears upon these two Catholick principles, to wit, Holy Scripture, before and above all; and then Universal Tradition; not onely because the general Council of Nice, wherein [...], ancient Customes are under­set and established; but also the Britan­nick Church, in a The first Synod. after her Articles of Religion were fixed. An. 13. Re­gin. Elizab. Pro­vincial Council of her own, hath most expresly ordained by a special Ca­non.

Wee conclude therefore, That the Britannick Church, such as shee was late­ly under Episcopacy rightly constituted, was no way Schismatical, neither ma­terially, nor formally, since that she nei­ther erected unto her self Chair against Chair, which is the foul brand of Schis­maticks, in St. Cyprian; Nor did that Church cut her self off from Episcopacy, or made a Congregation at any time un­to her self against her Canonical Bishops [Page 51] (which ever is the formal character of Schismaticks, by the definition of the o Constantinopolitan Council) much less did she shake off her Bishops, and with the continued succession of Bishops, by conse­quence, the succession of her Priests, not interrupted (as I may say) from the very cradle of her Christianism. And as for lawful ordination (as well in the material part, the imposition of hands, as in the formal, wherein signally, by a set form of words, both praerogative of Ordination, and also jurisdiction is conferred on the Bishops) this her ordi­nation, I say, rightly and canonically per­formed by the Catholick Bishops, shee proves out of the very Records or Mo­numents of Consecrations: So that no man can by deserved right charge upon the Britannick Churches, that ancient re­proach of Schismaticks in p Tertullian, [Page 52] Vos ex vobis nati est is; You are new Upstarts, born yesterday of your selves. Nay so tenacious are the genuine Britains of the ancient Religion, and by conse­quence of her Catholick Discipline, that for the intire restitution of their Bishops, their most Gracious King himself Charls, Emperour of Great Britain, chuseth ra­ther to suffer so many, and so most un­deserved injuries (even which is horrid to be spoken, to death it self, which in dishonour and contempt of all q Chri­stian [Page 53] Monarchs, those most desperate Rebels threaten to their King, and not long since potent Monarch) then abolish Episcopacy, as mindful of that r Oath, to be trembled at, whereby hee religiously bound himself to God and the Church at his Coronation.

[Page 54]The Clergy, and likewise better part of the Nobility, as also the Britannick people, dispersed here and there (Rivals with their King in this part of his Re­ligion) refuse not to undergo the loss of all their estates, persecutions, ba­nishments, yea are ready to indure all kindes of extremity, to their very last breath, rather than consent to the Schismaticks, in the extermination of Catholick Episcopacy, which under a most false pretence of Religion, stubborn [Page 55] traiterous persons, sworn enemies of the whole Catholick Church, of Re­ligion it self, and Christian Truth, as also of all Empire and Monarchy, attempt by force of arms, abandoning the whole Royal Authority: Whom, the Best and Greatest God, the severe assertour of Catholick Unity, vouchsafe to disperse in his own time, and recollect at length the Britannick Church, heretofore a ve­ry illustrious part of the Christian world, yea, the whole Christian Uni­verse it self, as one flock under one Shepheard. Amen.

S. D. G. Can. VI. Concil. Nicaen. I. [...].

A LETTER TO THE Right Honourable, THE Lord Hopton, Importing the Occasion of writing the fore-going TREATISE.

My Lord,

THe inclosed from Dr. Basier was left with mee when he took his jour­ney toward Italy; Hee acquainted mee with part of the Contents, which may put your Lordship in present expectation [Page] of two Manuscripts, one of which is intended to Sir George Radcliffe; I shall avoid all occasions, I can, of detaining them, being loath to deprive your Lordship, for an hour, of the benefit which may be assuredly reaped by two Tracts, so good in their several natures; but the Doctors commands, impo­sed upon another Gentleman and my self, to search, & secure, divers quotations in his own, and the liberty hee granted of the other to be communicated for a time, necessitate mee to crave your Lordships pardon, and forbea­rance a little while, one of the Books cited by him, being not yet to be met with, and the tran­scription not to be done in haste. [Page] The occasion of the Doctors set­ting pen to Paper, was taken from a Work which Mr. Chr. Iustell (he who put out the Greek and Latine Councils your Lordship hath) is about, which he means to entitle Geographia Sacro-Politi­ca, making clear the distinctions of several Dioceses, &c. and assert­ing the priviledges of some Churches, exempted from the Su­premacy of the Roman. The Doctor hath importuned him to enlarge somewhat about our Church, and I think (in my hearing) prevailed with him for a promise. This Diatribe hath prepared the way a little for him, & given him a sight of what he did not so particularly understand, in reference to us. [Page] The main businesse is, the paral­lel of our, with the Cyprian privi­ledge, which I wish they may suf­ficiently prove, to the satisfaction of the World. I shall be very glad to hear your Lordships approba­tion of what the learned Doctor hath done toward it, in the read­ing whose Book, if any scruple retard you, I may chance to re­move it, knowing the Authors meaning by the daily conversa­tion and conference I had with him. If I thought your Lordship had not the Lord Montrosse's History, and Sr. Balthazar Iarbiers Vindication of the King (as hee pre­tends) already dispatched to you by another hand, I would use all diligence to procure, and send [Page] you them, by the first, being very ready, wherein I may, to express my self,

My Lord
Your Lordships ve­ry faithful, and most obsequious servant, RI. WATSON.

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