THE Humble Address AND PETITION Of several PEERS of this Realm, TO HIS MAJESTY of Sacred Memory, King CHARLES the First. 1640.

To the Kings most Excellent Majesty.

WE are here to cast our selves at Your Majesties. Feet, being Twelve of the Peers of this Realm, humbly craving to recommend to Your Royal Consideration several great Dangers and Distempers which threaten the Church, State, and Your Majesties Royal Person, which are reducible to the following Heads, viz.

  • 1. The Danger and Hazard to which your Majesty is exposed in the War, the waste of your Revenue thereby, and the Discontents occasioned by the disorders of the Soldiers.
  • 2. Sundry Innovations in matters of Religion.
  • [Page 2] 3. Increase of Popery, by employing those of that Religion in Places of Trust, in Com­manding Men and Arms in the Field, they being not permitted by Law to have any Arms in their Houses.
  • 4. The great mischiefs which may ensue, if the Forces raised in Ireland should be brought in­to England.
  • 5. The urging of Ship-money.
  • 6. The heavy charge upon Merchandize, to the discouragement of Trade, and the multitude of Monopolies, whereby the Manufactures of this Kingdom are burthened.
  • 7. The grief of the Subjects by long intermis­sion of Parliaments, and the dissolution of those that have been called without effect.

For the Remedy whereof, we pray, that the Par­liament may be summon'd, whereby the Causes of the Grievances that the People lie under may be taken away, and the Authors and Counsellers of them be brought to Trial and Punishment, as their Offences shall require: And that the War may be composed without Blood, to the Honour and Safety of your Majesties Person, the Comfort of your People, and the Ʋniting of both Realms against the common Enemy of the Reformed Religion.

  • Bedford,
  • Hertford,
  • Essex,
  • Warwick,
  • Mouldgrave,
  • Bullingbrook,
  • Bristol,
  • Say,
  • Brook,
  • Paget,
  • Mandivile.
  • Howard,

[Page 3] WHether the Petitions of these times are Copies of this of 40, is not hard to judge, nor is the method wholly forgot that then was used; for soon after the Lords had Petitioned, (saith Baker) some of the discontented Party so influenced the Common Council, that a Petition was framed in the names of all the Citizens of London; and a little before, the King took into the Privy Council some men that were well thought of by the Mobilee. Thus far we agree pretty well. Next the Scots were put upon by their Friends the Dissenters of England, to present a Petition to the same effect; but here we differ, hoping the Scots in 80 have one to put them in mind of the traiterous Villanies of 40. 'Tis prodigious, that in the same Age, the same Nation should bid so fair for a Ruine, by the same men, in the same manner; yet those that take it for an affront not to be thought honest, run into these premu­nires. Sure every one that will abominate the repetition of the late Rebellion, will (were it for no other reason) abstain from subscribing, because that was the fatal manner of the beginning of the late Civil Wars. Though this be enough, yet every honest man hath reason to refuse, because the King, considering the ill effects they formerly produc'd, doth almost Petition his Subjects not to impose upon him. But 'tis answered, that it is their duty to shew their Grievances, and God commands us to Petition him, and 'tis rational to Petition the Prince. But they never consider, they often-times ask of God and have not, because they ask amiss, nor can they reasonably expect a favourable reception, when the manner is ex­presly forbid; but subjects have a Priviledge of making their Prince understand their necessities, and though they are sure to in­crease their Grievances, yet that they will chuse to bear rather than lose an useless Priviledge; but this is the onely way the King can be offended, without breach of Law; so that we may guess at the love of these ungrateful Wretches, who mischief him all they can, prompted by his indulgence, who never put them to the strictness of Law, which they do to him, resolving not to obey any indifferent Command that rigorous Law commands not; they are resolved, to their perpetual infamy, to make our late Sa­cred Royal Martyr speak truth to futurity, viz. That they are not to be won with Obligations. How unbounded is their liberty, like their malice and ingratitude? How absolute did the King make them, when but for asking, he passed the Habeas Corpus Bill; yet they who reap the onely benefit of it, refuse him a reasonable request. What can be expected, from such ill things? Humanity sorbids to [Page 4] call them Beasts, and will not suffer me to call them men; for these creatures, of all men, might rationally be thought the last in such Ingenteel Proceedings, because (as I said before) they were, as Dissenters, under the lash of the Law; but they differ not more from the Church than good Manners. These are the very scandal of Protestants, since they protest against nothing more than Loyalty: These that are suffer'd to Worship God after their own wrong way, and are so far from being compell'd, that in favour of them, Reason it self is almost constrain'd to believe them men of tender Consciences; and yet these to be the first, nay, God be thanked, daily disturbers of our Governour Moses. What do these differ, as lately was observed, from Corah, Dathan, &c. who in lewd Assem­blies offer false fire, and make some seeming Conscience of their words, and none of their deeds: Are not these they that for Gods sake obey not the Ordnances of men? But what if God design to bring a Judgment on the Nation, and make this an occasion of hastning it, as he did when he mov'd David to number the people, it is said, that the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel and Judah, and the Lord moved David to say, Go number Israel and Judah. And the number of fighting men that were in Davids Territories were thirteen hundred thousand, which (as undoubtedly it did) were enough to make David valiant himself, which God was pleased to humble, by taking away with Pestilence seventy thousand in three days time. Now if God should move the Heads of the Faction to see what number they can draw of their confederacy, and if so be they perceive themselves of number sufficient to rebell, God may inflict the same judgment as befell Israel; and if a judgment of this nature happen on (more) rebellious London, than learn to obey and tremble. For none can doubt, that more the number of Rebels was coveted, than the sitting of the Parliament; else Rebel Iretons Son could never have the impudence to say, That he knew them that esteem'd it an honour to his Father, to have his Head on Westmin­ster-hall.


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