A DECLARATION OF Sir WILLIAM BATTEN Late VICE-ADMIRALL for the PARLIAMENT, CONCERNING His Departure from London, to His Highnesse the PRINCE of WALES.

For satisfaction of all Honest SEA-MEN, and Others whom it may concerne.

At LONDON, Printed in the year, 1648.

A DECLARATION OF Sir WILLIAM BATTEN late Vice-Admirall for the Parlia­ment: Concerning his Departure from London, to His Highnesse the Prince of Wales.

I Suppose it is not unknown to the greater part of this Kingdome, how for 7 yeares I have served the Parliament; with what zeale and fidelity I obeyed their Com­mands (while I was their Vice-Admirall, and held their Commission) God the searcher of all hearts and themselves can best testifie. What benefit they received by my endevours becomes not me to mention, and (to doe them right) themselves were still prompt enough to send their voted Thanks for my reducing the Fleet in the Downes, fetching in the Swallow and Bonaventure, for regaining Weymouth, for securing Lyme and Plymouth, for taking Hartford-west, Portland, Pendennis, and Silly, for assisting Major Gene­rall [Page 2] Laughorne to rout the Forces in Pembroke-shire, for relieving the Ld Inchiquin when Youghall was besie­ged, for repairing Deale-Castle with 600 l. of my owne money, for building a Fort at Plymouth with lime and stone, which cost me 500 l. whereof I never received but 200 l. and that (as the custome was) not without a suffi­cient Bribe; with many other services, all which they cannot be more willing to forget then now I would have them.

But why after all this (when their work was done and without any cause shewed) I was displaced by a Com­mittee at the Head-quarters at Putney with the advice of their Adjutators, I could never understand; nor why I was sent for up by land, as not to be honoured to come in with the Ship, threatned (by that false man Mr. Smith) to have a Charge drawn up against me unlesse I would instantly lay down my Commission, though nothing was objected, but my suffering some of the 11 Members to go beyond the Seas, when all of them had the Speakers Passe; this, and because I was not of the temper of the Ar­my, were judged sufficient to have me dismissed, & another (such another) thrust in to be my Successour as till then I never imagin'd would be Vice-Admirall of a Navy.

My Commission thus surrendred, I was presently turn'd out of Deale-Castle, and could not obtain leave for two nights longer, though my Wife was then sick, and forc'd from her Bed to lie at an Ale-house. But how this wrought upon my Brethren the Sea-men, I hope all my life I shall thankfully remember; they best knew what service I had done, and now beheld mine and their own reward; whereof they expressed so just resent­ment when all those injuries offered to me were repayed to my new Successour, whom they refused to come on [Page 3] Board, sent him back to the Shoare, and bid him return-to the place from whence he came; it being most reaso­nable that that man should hold no command who open­ly professed himself to be a Leveller.

This new Vice-Admirall was no sooner rejected, but Letters came to me from severall friends, that I would return to the Ships; and the City of London (I heartily thank them) petitioned the Parliament to restore me to my place; so that some who had been most keen against me, did now make fresh Overtures of a Commission (if I would embrace it) but I had resolved no longer to serve those persons, who (as HIS MAJESTY Himself told them) Doe change their Principles with their Successes; and (to deale clearly with the world) I had engaged my self to His Highnesse the Prince of WALES, to accept no Com­mission but such as His HIGHNESSE should please to al­low me, though this I presume was then unknown, both to Derby-house and the Head-quarters.

Now (according to their custome) they began to make me a Delinquent; and that most unworthy man, Sr Hen­ry Mildmay, accused me for assisting the Earle of NOR­WICH at Stratford-bridge, and (as the Ld Say told me) for sending Horses to Sir CHARLES LUCAS at Chelmes­ford, which whether true or false, was to them indifferent; since now they resolved to find me a Malignant, where­of they have given their usuall Testimony by violent breaking into my House. Plundring my Goods, and Se­questring my Estate, with no small incivilities to my Wife and Family, whereat I nothing wonder since I hear Sir Henry Mildmay's hand was to the Warrant.

But why should I complain when I see how they re­quired persons of the greatest eminency, that had done them best service, as the Ld WILLOUGHBY of Parham, [Page 4] the Ld INCHIQUIN, Sir WILLIAM WALLER, Major Generall LAUGHORNE, Maj. Gen: MASSEY, Major Ge­nerall BROWNE, Maj. Gen: POYNES, Colonel GRAVES, Col. WEST, Col. BLAKE, Col. FORTESCUE, and many others yet living, besides those already dead; but espe­cially the City of LONDON, whose lives & purse were so frankly exposed, that above fourscore times they had so­lemn Thanks for their great affection to the Parliament; yet as a Reward for all their bloud and coine) an Army was brought in upon them, the Tower, Forts, and Maga­zines seized, their Militia and Officers tane from them, their Lord Major and Aldermen imprison'd, with all o­ther marks of slavery from this ingratefull Faction, who take no consideration but of their advantage, the world not having so ill Subjects, nor worse Masters.

I had not said this, if these injuries concerned only me in particular; but such injustice hath been exercised on my profession, as if the Sea-men were none of the KING'S Subjects, and were to expect no benefit by the Lawes of England: insomuch, that lately when we ex­pressed our desires for Peace, the Lord Say told us (in too much scorn) he would have us know, the Parliament should not be Governed by a company of Saylors. To say nothing of that malicious designe of bringing Land-Sol­diers on board, to awe and enslave the Sea-men, which to all sober men is the most ridiculous Tyranny ever yet imagined; and which they I finde will not hastily be forgotten.

I must confesse, after the Vacating my Commission; I began more seriously to examine whom I had served, for till then, I was so diligent in performing their Com­mands that I took small leisure to examine their Acti­ons, but when I remember we fought all this while [Page 5] to fetch the KING to His Parliament, and yet now tis made Treason to offer to bring Him thither; that some Members were Voted Malignants for deserting the House, and others made Delinquents for staying in it, that we took Oathes to defend the Kings Person and Authority; and now must have a Government setled without Him, and no Addresses made to Him, but Plots and Designes to poyson and destroy Him: These and many other such horrible contradictions cause me to abandon these enemies of Peace, and to make my humble addresses to his Highnesse the Prince of Wales, whom (God is my witnesse) I come to serve faithfully as becomes an ho­nest man & a Loyall Subject; not drawn by hopes either of honour or profit, as my friends & acquaitance (espe­cially Capt. Jordan, a person of known integrity, & great skill in his profession, who also comes along with me upon the same resolutions) can sufficiently testifie. And I humbly conceive (were nothing of Conscience in it, yet in common prudence) others are obliged to runne the same course, it being impossible (considering His Majesties personall Vertues now evident to all the world; the large possession He hath in the hearts of His people, of all His 3 Kingdomes, His numorous Progeny and Allies) that ever Peace should be obtained till our KING be restored.

But I would not be mistaken, as if I were now turned an enemy to Parliaments; for I professe, I shall with the hazard of my life and fortunes, endeavour the welfare and being of free Parliaments; provided it be with the just Rights of the KING and His Subjects, that by a Per­sonall Treaty, or what other way it shall please God; the good known Lawes of England may be revived, by a firme and lasting Peace.

Will: Batten,
FINIS.

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