AUTHORITY ABUSED BY The VINDICATION Of the Last Years Transactions, AND The ABUSES DETECTED; WITH INLARGEMENTS upon some Particulars more briefly touched in the Reflections upon the Occur­rences of the Last Year.

TOGETHER WITH Some NOTES upon another Vindication, Entituled, The Third and Last Part of the Magistracy and Government of England Vindicated.

By the Author of the REFLECTIONS.

Magna est VERITAS, & Praevalebit.

LONDON, Printed in the Year MDCXC.

TO THE KING.

SIR,

WHEN I first came in to you to Sherborn, I came with as much Ap­petite, though in an infirm Condi­tion, to engage in the same Cause with you, as I could have done to a good Meal when an hungred. And though you are now set­led in the Throne, and the Storms of War which then threatned this Nation, long since blown over: Yet I have reason to believe I may run some Danger in what I now do for the Service of your Majesty and my Country. And though I doubt not of the Protection of Almighty God, and the powerful Supports of Truth, Justice, and a good Conscience; yet because it is my Duty to neglect no honest Means for my Safety and Quiet, having here performed an Act of Great Fidelity to your Majesty, and the Go­vernment of my Country, I do claim as my Right [Page]the Protection of both for my self, and my Labours. I have not written one Syllable which I do not be­lieve to be true; nor have I forborn a Word, which I thought pertinent to my Subject, and necessary to your Service. And this being done, not out of Dis­content for any Disappointment Ʋnworthily sugge­sted, not without the Check of his own Conscience, by the Writer of the Vin­dication. p. 30. in quest of some Place, (for I ne­ver sought any, though I my self, with Five Sons, are all ready to serve you, if you please to command it) nor to serve any Faction or Party; but sincere­ly to preserve one of the Noblest Governments in the World, (as I have long thought it) to serve a Just and Noble Cause, (as I have else where, though briefly, proved) to serve my Country, to serve your Majesty, and, which is above all, to serve Almighty God, is such an Act of Fidelity, as is too rare to be met with in this Nation at this time: And I know you cannot desert me in it, without deserting (more or less) all that I have endeavoured to serve: Nor can any one hurt or molest me (an innocent Man, and endeavouring to do good) without bringing greater hurt upon themselves: Whereof he who gave occasion of this Writing may be an Example:) And besides, without striking at your Majesty and the Government, to say no more.

For the same intent and purpose, besides what I have said in the following Sheets in common, I must [Page]crave the Favour of a few Words to your self in par­ticular: God by his Providence has brought you to one (as I said) of the Noblest Governments in the World: That You and these Nations may enjoy the Compleat Benefit of so great a Favour, these things, I will presume to say, are necessary, nay absolutely necessary, on your part. First, That you be very careful to keep up such a firm and quick Sense of the Providence of God in these things, that your Heart be neither so lifted up with any high Conceit of your self for what you have already gotten, nor so involved in Cares and Endeavours to keep that, or get more, that you forget him, and either take up with the Enjoyment of these things, and neglect the further Prosecution of his Service; or deserting your Confidence in him, decline to vulgar Policies for your own Security or Advantage.

Secondly, That often contemplating the uncon­ceivable Excellence of the Divine Majesty, which hath given Being to, and governs this vast Uni­verse, whereof the whole Earth is in comparison of the rest but a Point, and raising your Soul above these transient things which the Vulgar admire, you look upon the Acceptance of a Crown as an Act of Cha­rity to poor Mortals, but your only true Glory to con­sist in the Approbation of that excellent Majesty, and of his Glorious, though to us Mortals Invisible, Ministers. Such as is the Applause and Admiration [Page]of the Rabble to a great King; such, and no more, is the Applause and Admiration of the greatest of Mortals to a truly Wise Man, without the Appro­bation of the Celestial Spectators.

Thirdly, That assuring your self that you are rai­sed up by the Providence of this Glorious Majesty for his Service in these Nations at least, if not further, you generously prosecute the same with all Fidelity, according to his Will and Pleasure, that is, his Eternal Laws of Righteousness, his Express Instructi­ons and Commands, and the Constitution and just Laws of this Government and Nation, which is the special Ordinance of God for this People, that is, ordered and preserved by his Providence.

Fourthly, That for that purpose you generously and faithfully endeavour to improve all the Advan­tages put into your Hand, and Talents committed to your Trust, for the Honour of his Name, Wor­ship, Laws and Institutions; that is, the Exempla­ry Authority of your Royal Person, and of your Royal Family, (conniving at no vitious Persons there, though otherwise never so great or necessary) the Dispensations of your Honours and Favours, and the strict Execution of the Laws, which is your proper part in the Government. The doing of this magnanimously, slighting the vulgar Prudentials of Animal Polititians, is that which in the Sacred Scrip­ture is called Faith, and highly recommended. But to [Page]boggle at any of this, will be dangerous to you, and may produce as great Disappointments as those of the last Year, and make your Counsels prove Abor­tive, and it may be as destructive as King James's did by the like means. You have begun well in your Letter to the Bishops; but the like Care is to be taken that the Laws be strictly executed by the Judges and Civil Magistrates. Nor would this De­base, but Improve your Military Discipline, and make it more prosperous and successful.

Fifthly, That to this end and purpose also you in­form your self, as well as may be, concerning the true Constitution of the English Government, and your own Part therein, that you neither neglect, nor exceed your Duty, or fall into any of the unhappy Mis­carriages of some of your Predecessors, but wisely and religiously contenting your self with what has been conferred upon you, and justly belongs to you, to the others you generously secure to each their own.

Sixthly, That for Information in these matters you rely upon no private or secret Counsellors, but in the Intervals of Parliament, consult the Privy Council and Judges; and the great Council of the Nation, as soon as may be: This it was which raised you to the Throne. It is their Interest to preserve the Her­nour and Majesty of the Monarchy, and they will cer­tainly do it. And it was nothing but the Craft of ill Men, who kept our late Brinces in continual Jen­lousies, [Page]of Parliaments, to hold up a Faction for their own Advantage.

Seventhly, That if upon good Information you find that this is a mixt Government, composed of the Three Simple Forms, the Enquiring Part belonging more specially to the Commons, the Judiciary to the Lords, the Consultary and Legislative to the King, Lords and Commons, and the Executive to the King, which I believe is the truth, upon this Considera­tion, you look upon the Whole as one great Body, whereof your self is indeed the Head in Honour and Degree, but in effect rather the Hand, or if you will, the Right Hand; but however a Part: And therefore that you always retain a great Respect for this Noble Body, treating them with all Honour and Affection, reputing their Honour and Interest your own, as Yours is Theirs, and will be so treated by them, if a fair Correspondence be kept up be­tween you; which will make you not only beloved at home, but dreaded abroad.

Eightly, That you be very tender and cautious of invading their Rights, or neglecting their Counsel, in any matter of Importance; but especially of holding up any Favourites against them; and to that end that you be very jealous of that Generation, and those particular Persons, who have been the Authors or Propagators of False Notions concerning the Con­stitution of this Government, or of Evil Counsels [Page]and Courses among your Predecessors; and more especially those, who have already by any Evil Coun­sels or Unfaithfulness in not well informing you, betray'd your self into any Inconvenience: Whereof, if you please to command me, I shall be ready to give you some plain Instances.

Ninthly, That you endeavour wisely to compose the Dissentions, and allay the Heats and Animosities of the Nation, and to unite all in a mutual Assistance for the Common Interest. Our Divisions, and the Heats of our Dissentions, are for the most part the Re­liques of Popish Practices, and Effects of Evil Policies of Courtiers. These have both conspired for different ends to divide us both in Church and State, and to impose upon the People; so that it is the truest Wisdom and greatest Interest of this Na­tion to endeavour so much the more for an Union; and to that end to detect their Impostures. This Government is in truth a Noble Commonwealth in the Root and Body, accommodated with the Ad­vantage, and adorned with the Honour and Majesty of a Monarchy in the Execution. Crafty Men ob­serving this, have practis'd the Division in this man­ner. First, By putting the Kings upon illegal Pro­jects, till that produced Jealousies of Arbitrary De­signs, and then improving those to the raising of the like Jealousies in those unhappy Kings of Republi­can Conspiracies. Thus were multitudes imposed [Page]upon: Whereas the Subversion of the Commonwealth to support the Monarchy, is no less Foily, Madness and Treachery in an English Man, than is the pulling down the Monarchy to support the Commonwealth. Nor can any thing endanger our Monarchs but them­selves, by adhering to Evil Counsellors, rejecting or declining the Advice of the Great Council of the Na­tion, and violating their Rights.

Lastly, That to this purpose you avoid all Favour and Encouragement to any Faction; and make no other difference between Persons, but what the Law hath made; except only between the Virtuous and the Vitious, and between such as may safely be trusted, and such as may not, (for which end for Parliament-Men, and persons admitted to great Offices of Trust, and Bishops, a Recognition by Act of Parliament may be necessary;) but by a constant tenor and course of your Actions demonstrate a cordial and universal Affection to All, and a great Zeal and Activity for the Service of God, and for the Peace, Safety and Prosperity of the Nation.

By these Means you will be a compleat King, and rule in the Hearts of the People: These will pro­duce in them such a Trust and Confidence in you, as will make your Government exceeding easie; and such a Government will make your Name Honou­rable in the Roll of our English Kings: But if you once set up for a Separate Interest, strike-in [Page]with, and make your self the Head of any Faction, give your self up to the Conduct of particular Fa­vourites, suffer the Publick Revenue and the Trea­sure of the Nation to be squandred away without any Account, and the People to be injur'd by Ex­actions and Delays of Officers, and tread in the steps of your Predecessors of the last Race, you will ipso facto cease to do the part of a King, violate the Trust reposed in you, and your Coronation Oath; and deceiving the Expectations of all Men, after such a Succession of Kings, raise such Prejudice against Monarchy it self, as may indanger this Noble Government, and the Settlement of the Nation, and make your Name inglorious to all Posterity. But these are things so inconsistent with the Reasons, for which you was invited hither, the Causes of your Expedition expressed in your own Declaration, the Ends for which the Crown was first offered to you, and after set upon your Head, the Honour and Safety of your Government, and, which is more than all, the Righteous Laws of God, (who, as we hope, raised you up to be an Instrument of Mercy, not of Ven­geance to This Nation) as no Man, who believes the Character we have received of your great Vertue, can easily fear from you, though the notorious Mis­carriages of the late Reigns may have left some Im­pressions upon the Minds of some, which yet I hope Experience of your Prudence and Justice will [Page]totally expunge. And I pray God give you (as I hope he will) true Wisdom to know Him, to discern His Hand in these things, and what He expects from you; to know what is your proper Part in this great Affair, and to be more careful to discharge it well, than to enlarge it beyond its just Bounds; and that all true Happiness may always attend your Majesty.

Your Majesties most Faithful and, Obedient Subject.

AUTHORITY ABUSED, BY THE Vindication of the Last Years Transactions, AND The ABUSES DETECTED By the Author of the Reflections.

OF a great many Evil Arts and Practices, which in the late Reigns were used for the Subversion of the True English Government, and Suppression of the most ancient common Rights of the People of these Nations, one that was most constantly used for that purpose, was the Em­ployment of Mercenary Writers to put a colour of Words and Oratory upon those things, for which they had no colour of Law. And it would be a sad case with us, if after so glorious a Deliverance, we should be already so far deserted by the Divine Providence, as to stand in need of any such Practices or Assistance: Yet so it should seem to be, unless the Pam­phlet Entituled, The last Years Transactions Vindicated, be a bold and impudent Imposture. For it will not be hard to prove, That that Pamphlet is a False, Scandalous and Im­pious Libel: And to Print it not only as under the Patronage of a Chief Secretary of State, but expresly as Published by Au­thority, is either an Act of impudent Imposture, and a Cheat or Abuse; or it may be feared we are again relapsing into the same unhappy Circumstances. But I suppose I shall make it appear, that there is a double Imposture in it, that is, That neither had the Writer that Authority for what he did, which was design'd he should be thought to have had; nor was it [Page 2]designed sincerely to serve the Publick Authority of the Nation, the Present Government; but to cover the Evil Practices of those Persons, who were the Authors of our Disappointments the last Year, that they may the better do the like again this. And probably, if the business be well ex­amined, he will be found to have been employed by some of them (who are therefore the proper Authors of it) for that end; and not by that Honourable Person, whom they have made so bold with by this Dedication of what's written (as he saith) in Defence of others.

There are three Phrases by which usually the Leave of Au­thority for the Publication of Books is briefly expressed. The most common is Licensed; which signifies a written License under the Hand of some Person authorized to give it. Ano­ther is with Allowance, which implies a Verbal Leave, but of some Person of great Place and Authority. The third is what the Authors have thought fit to prefix to this Book, Published by Authority: And this (as I take it) implies more than a bare leave, viz. Something of a Command, and of some great Authority, more than a bare Allowance or License of a Secretary of State. But what that Authority should be, by which this is published, I believe will not be easie to find or discover: Only what it is not will not be difficult to per­ceive, even from the consideration of the Book it self, and divers Passages in it.

Nothing can be so truly, innocently, honestly and plainly said, but it may be contradicted or opposed by a Man of Wit and Parts, with some colour and appearance of Reason, of which the Oration of Carneades against Justice is a suffici­ent Instance; and by one, who hath no great store of either, with Railing and Foul Language, of which this Pamphlet we are now considering presents us with a pregnant Instance. No less than Folly, Enthusiasm, Visionar, Enthusiastick Illumination, deluded Notion of Inspiration, Indiscretion, Excentrick Zeal, Quakers Impulse, are all at one Volly let fly at the Author of the Reflections by this mighty Champion, the Vindicator of [Page 3]the King, the Parliament, and the whole State at his first Charge; all in one Paragraph published by Authority, if we will believe him; besides divers single Shots afterwards, as Silly, precipitant Zeal, hot Politician, Lucid Intervals, Extatick Sermon, Revengeful Spirit, &c.

After such a Charge, it is no wonder to see such a Cham­pion, with no little Ostentation, insult over his vanquished Adversary, and upbraid him with his confined Sphere, narrow Sphere, short Line, want of Knowledge of Affairs of State, small Skill in Affairs abroad, gross Ignorance in the Affairs of Europe, little Skill in Politicks, none at all in History, unac­quaintedness with Philosophy, and such gross mistakes in the Mo­tion of natural Bodies, as to believe a moving Cart may be stayed by Witchcraft.

Such stuff as this is agreeable enough to the quality of a Mercenary Writer, a temporizing Observator, a Mountebank, a Quack, and might have passed with some ordinary Licencers: But as it doth never advantage any Cause, so it is usually a sign of either a very barren Cause, or a very shallow brain, where it is much used without any Proof or Reason: And therefore Men in great Authority, do rarely imploy such Writers, or if they do, do it only by some Secret Encouragement, not by any Publick Authority.

And if this general consideration be not sufficient to ren­der the Authors suspected of Imposture in that respect, the Writer himself hath supplied us in the very next Page with special matter to help it out, telling us that the King by a Pro­digy of good Nature has laid aside the Resentment such a Pam­phlet would have met with in any Reign but His: And if this be not yet enough, he immediately adds his own Sentence of Self­condemnation: And where the King forgives, its ill manners to stint the Royal Bounty by ill Treating the Griminal. For if any one besides this Champion would be guilty of such ill manners, it ought not certainly to be believed that any one near the King, or of any great Authority would by Publickly Authorizing it: Much less that so ill a treatment should be Authorized by [Page 4]that Noble Lord to whom they have presumed to Dedi­cate it. Sure I am he had no great reason to do it, if he acted any great part in the Transactions, and the Vindication be written in Defence of others.

What is here inferred from the Modesty and Decency of the Terms and Language, may likewise be inferred from the Truth and Honesty of the Suggestions, Assertions, and Inferences. It would be too long to examine all, and besides needless: I will therefore for brevity sake only confront three or four of the Assertions with the words of the Reflections; and leave the Reader to consider how proper and likely such Candor and Ingenuity is to be Published by Authority.

Pag. 9. He chargeth the Author of the Reflections, speak­ing of the Danish Forces, with Asserting plainly They will prove a greater Burthen than Advantage to us. Whereas the words of the Reflections are only thus. The Season of the year is now far gon, that they are more like to prove a Burden this Winter, than any Advantage to us. And this is called a Calumny, Pag. 13. but with how great reason the Reader may there see.

Again in the same, Pag. 13. reciting the words of the Re­flections concerning our Losses at Sea, he concludes Speaking of the Author, that He boldly adde, That our Merchants Ships have been made a prey to those who should have been their Guide and Convey. Whereas the Reflections insted of holdly adding what he saith, cautiously premise a Parenthesis, which this honest and candid Gentleman was so bold as to leave out. viz. (If the Complaints of our Merchants and their Mariners be true.)

But never did our Champion behave himself more bravely and like himself than when he comes to talk of the Abdication. That one Paragraph of the Reflections makes him lay about him indeed like a Man of mettle, for three Paragraphs to­gether: It seems he was not a little concerned at it; and where the Concern lay is not hard to be perceived. But here I shall only take notice of one instance more for my pre­sent purpose, leaving the rest to the Readers observation, [Page 5] Pag. 21. he tells us: Our new Politician is downright offend­ed at the Parliament for finding King Jame's Departure an Ab­dication of the Government, &c. This certainly is no less than a piece of Jesuitical Modesty, where-ever this Traveller learnt it. The words of the Reflections are down right the con­trary: There was reason enough to declare the departure of King James under his circumstances an Abdication of the Government, &c. And this is not only said, but so cleared and demonstra­ted there in few lines, as hath given no little Satisfaction to some persons of no mean parts and learning; but no less Dis­turbance, (it seems) to this Gentleman, as may be farther noted hereafter.

Another Assertion or two I must take notice of, for the singular Charity expressed in them. Those, as they are ground­less, and cannot be deduced by any good Inference from the Reflections, so may they be confronted with other Wri­tings of the same Authors in print: This Man (saith he, speaking of the Author of the Reflections) would drench the World in Blood, Sacrifice whole Hecatombs to his Revenge, and once more set these Kingdoms off their Hinges by a precipitate Method of rendring Men desperate, Page 21. Such another is the Suggestion, page 22. Why should King James's Ministers and Counsellors, all of them, without distinction, fall under the stroak? And again, page 23. Our Author fondly concludes, &c. because he hath not been glutted with the Blood of the Delin­quents. I need note no more of this kind. Those are so foul and infamous Words, that if written and published without very good grounds, do of themselves sufficiently make good one part of my Charge against this Pamphlet. Certain I am, that no such thing was ever intended in the Reflections: And from these Words in the Paragraph under his consideration, Not one of those, who by their wicked Counsels and Compliances betrayed not only their Country, but their King himself, &c. hath yet been brought to condign Punishment, or from any other in that Book, I do not see how any such matter can be dedu­ced: But if confronted with what the same Author hath [Page 6]written in his Apology for Mr. Stafford, page 17. and else­where, it will all there appear as false, as here it doth groundless.

What hath been already noted, I suppose, is sufficient to make good the Charge of a False and Infamous Libel. The Piety of it may be discerned by the Respect therin given to the Sacred Scriptures, where he saith, that the Expressions, Taught of God, Children of Light, Sensual not having the Spi­rit, and many others of that kind, smell of the late delu­ded Notion of Inspiration, page 2. and by the regard therein expressed to the Providence of God, and to the Study and Consideration of his Works and Dealings with the Sons of Men, pag. 26. and by the Reproachful Terms, which, after the mode of the late Atheistical Times, are very confidently bestowed upon sincere Piety, and genuine Religion. But I have no mind to cast Pearles before Swine, by a full Expli­cation of these things; but leaving him, and such Abderites to the Correction of some Hippocrates, shall content my self with those Evangelical Promises, Matth. 5.11, 12. 1 Pet. 4.14. and rejoyce in them too, while the Mercenary Writer may chance to feel the smart of his own Prophaneness, in selling his Conscience for a Mess of Pottage.

And now to return to our Enquiry, What Authority it should be, which hath ordered the Publication of such a Libel? Of the King we are secure, that it was not he, by what hath been recited before; and of the Parliament, were we not other­wise secure, this Writer hath given us the like assurance, telling us, He knows not but he may be blameable in playing the Advocate, or in daring to suppose, that the great Council of the Nation needs a Vindication, page 16. And the same we may conclude, for the same Reason, of that Noble Lord, whose Patronage he thinks but reason he (should) allow to what's written in defence of others. It remains then, that either he had none at all, and then he is an Impostor upon that ac­count; or that it was from some of those others, in whose Defence it was written, and then is he no less an Impostor [Page 7]in concealing whose it was, and giving occasion by this De­dication to make that Noble Person be believed, by inob­servant Readers, to be the Man. And this we have reason to believe is the Truth, if the Scope and divers Passages of this Vindication be well considered.

It is true, he pretends much Zeal and Concern for the Vin­dication of the King, and of the Parliament; but that is no more than every Knave and Cheat will do to those he in­tends to abuse; the Officious Kisses of an Enemy; and therefore whether sincere, or feigned, is to be determined by the concurrence of other Indications. And

1. It appears by his own shewing, that he is a very offici­ous Advocate, and was never retained or imployed by ei­ther of them.

2. Nor was there much cause of Vindication in respect of either of them; for most of the Transactions noted, were reflected on as matters of Disappointments and Unhappiness, rather than Faults in them.

3. And these Disappointments being imputed not only by the Author of the Reflections, but by the Parliament it self, to the unfaithfulness and Treachery of Persons intrusted and imployed, the Vindication of such Transactions could not be sincerely intended to serve the King, or gratifie the Parliament, but to cover those Evil Practices and Persons, which not only the Author of the Reflections, but the Par­liament also, desired and endeavoured to discover.

And that this was really the Design of this Mercenary Pam­phlet, whoever had their Hands in it, and all the Comple­ments to the King, the Parliament, and the Earl of Shrewsbury Principal Secretary of State, a meer Disguise to cover that Design, and an Abuse upon that Noble Person at least, there are divers Observables in it perswade me to believe.

1. The very Beginning discovers his Mind, and what he was full of. It is a Severe Censure against prying too narrowly into the Secrets of Government and Mysteries of State: But if the Reflections be well considered, there is no other occasion [Page 8]for it but Honest Endeavours for such a Discovery, as is be­fore mentioned, that is, of what his business was to cover.

2. He there also discovers, or to use his own term, bewrays himself to be a genuine Disciple of the Mercenary Writers of the late Reigns, by magnifying the Policy of a Foreign State, as if our Laws were defective; only he shews himself but a Novice in the Trade, in that he takes his Precedent from Ve­uice, and not from France or Turk [...]y. Of his sense of the English Constitution I shall take notice hereafter.

3. And he presently after discovers his Affection to the English Nation, which he more than once, without any just occasion that appears, terms an ungrateful Nation.

4. He bewrays himself indeed, and discovers his rotten and unsound Notions and Sentiments concerning our presen Settle­ment, and the Bight of King William and Queen Mary to the Gevernment of these Kingdoms: And that he himself is ei­ther one of that Mungrel Temporizing Party, which hath ob­structed our compleat Settlement and underhand retarded the Reduction of Ireland, or at least doth prostitute his Mer­cenary Pen to gratify that Party.

For he plainly unhinges King Williams Title, and sets it up­on a false bottom, while he makes King James's Abdication to consist only, in his Departure. This is it which he finds fault with in the Reflections, that they do not admit the De­parture of King James to be an Abdication, without any re­gard to his precedent Actions. And that this is his mean­ing doth farther appear by his quarrelling the Author for in­terpreting the Departure to be rather the flight of a Criminal from Justice, than of an innocent Man; Metus causâ & cum animo reverlendi. And this being so, it cannot proceed but either from a dishonest Mind, and an ill design to undermine the Justice of the present King's Title, or from Ignorance: For no good Author ever yet called the Flight of an Inno­cent Man Metus causa, an Abdication. And because his pre­tended great Learning and Reading of History will not per­mit [Page 9]us to believe the latter, he can blame no body but him­self, if we impute it to the former; And the Truth is, I see not how he can avoid that imputation: For if he really thinks what is there said, to be a severe insinuation against the late King, and that no Kings are to be brought to Justice, he is a temporizing Person, to comply and flatter a Govern­ment erected upon no better ground than a pretended Ab­dication: But if he really believes the grounds upon which the Convocation declared that Departure an Abdication (which were that Kings precedent Actions) to be good, then is he basely Mercenary, to dissemble his own Opinion in compliance with some of that mungrel Party, who are still for a Regency. And this Government can never be safe while such Persons are permitted to have access to any Office of Secretary of State.

My Principles I had published in Print long since in the Important Questions, and again lately, but before his Pam­phlet came to the Press, in an Apology for Mr. Stafford, and therefore had no Masque of my own for him to remove: But I hope I have by this time taken off one from him, and shall presently take off another; for I doubt not, but this Leaf and the first Leaf of the next Sheet contain the Cha­racters of those Persons, in whose Defence, this Masque call'd a Vindication, was Written, and by whose Authority it was Published. It was not the King, nor the Parliament, nor the Principal Secretary of State, for whom this Service was designed: It was Written in the Defence of others; and who those others were, we may here perceive plainly enough. They are of Three sorts;

1. The Regency-men, those who were principally designed to be gratified in the Paragraph last mentioned, and indeed in the whole undertaking.

2. King James's Counsellors, Agents, and Accomplices, to be exempt from condign Punishment.

3. One or Two in King Charles's Reign, wrought upon through the Temptations and Snares of a Court; and some [Page 10]Persons, who in either of the Two last Reigns, had stumbled upon unwarrantable Measures; and these are to be received into Favour.

There is one sort more they should also have put in, had it not been too gross a matter to have been mentioned at this time, and that is the French Kings Pensioners; who, there is reason to believe, had not left off their old trade in the Transactions of the last Year; but there are none of them but may be comprehended among some of these here spe­cified. And as these plainly were designed to be served by this Pamphlet, so I doubt not but some of these set the Work on foot, and were the contrivers of its Dedication to the chief Secretary of State, and are therefore properly the chief Authors of it. Qui facit per alium, est perinde ac si faciat per seipsum c. qui facit de reg. jur. 6. As for the Per­son imployed to write it, it seemed very apparent to me in the perusal, to be in divers passages a mere personated business, and to be written invita Minerva, and which is worse, re­luctante Conscientia; which when I observed, it moved so much plty in me, that I presently struck out such passages as would too plainly have discovered him, and I thought too severe for a man in such a case; and I heartily pray God give him Repentance, and forgive him. But for those who imployed him (for that he wrote it not of himself, but was put upon it by some others, is but a natural consequence of what I have said) we may plainly discover something of their Character, by this Vindication.

First, It is plain that they are men of Craft and Tricks; for this is plainly a trick put upon the Chief Secretary of State, to make the World believe that he was concern­ed; and if they were so bold with him, the King himself may have reason to look about him, lest he be trick'd by them.

Secondly, They must be such as had some considerable concern in the pretended Vindication, and acted a great and notable (not noble) part in the Transactions, that is, im­mediately [Page 11]or mediately in our Disappointments; a much dif­ferent part from what was acted by the Noble Person whom they craftily apply to, as one concerned by participation in the same actions with themselves; and undoubtedly will be apt to play the like tricks with the King himself if they can, by putting him upon such actions as may justifie them­selves at least, and so engage him to stand by them in their ille­gal practices, an Artifice, by which the last race of our Kings have been often abused, and not yet forgotten.

Thirdly, What I have before observed of the Writer, must be true also of the principal Authors; nay more certain­ly true of them, whom he designed to please: For whatever was his own Opinion, it was accomodated to the Sentiments of them who imploy'd him, and therefore they must be men of no good Opinion of this Government, nor cordial Friends to the present King and Queen; so that this and my last ob­servation do mutually confirm each other.

Fourthly, Nor are they men of very sound notions concern­ing the true English Constitution and Government, as may be collected from their slighting expressions, used upon what in the Reflections is observed concerning the Privy Council and secret Cabals, calling it the Authors Eutopean Model, and from some expressions let fall concerning the Calling and Dissolving of Parliaments, of which more hereafter.

Thus much of their Character may be easily and plainly perceived by this Masque, which they call a Vindication; But because it is a matter of no small importance to the present King and Queen, and to the Peace and Happiness of these Nations, for our quiet Enjoyment of the admirable Mercy which Almighty God hath so graciously conferred upon us, and for our better improvement of the Advantage he hath put into our hands, that these Persons, who by their Craft and evil Designs, have occasioned our former disap­pointments, may be more fully detected, to prevent greater mischief for the future; I shall endeavour to explain some of those Mysterious practices, which are used at this day, from [Page 12]their very Original, in the days of King James the First; and then return to what is necessary to be further observed upon this Vindication.

When that King after that horrid Plot of the Gunpowder Treason, being more terrified with the Danger he had esca­ped, than animated by so great a Deliverance, to depen­dance upon the Providence of God who preserved him, which that Deliverance in a special manner obliged him to; deserting that great Duty, and relying upon his own craft, sought to secure himself and his own Posterity, by Compli­ance and Alliances with his Enemies, the Papists, like those who have recourse to Witches and Conjurers; instead of that Security he expected, he involved himself and his Posterity in such Snares, as were the real cause of all those Evils which afterward befel them, and out of which they could never after extricate themselves. During the long and hap­py Reign of Queen Elizabeth, who generously performing that great Duty, kept them at a distance; all they could do was only to contrive secret Plots against her Person, and Foreign Invasions, and to sow Seeds of Division in secret Meetings, all which that Providence of God, in which she confided, dissipated and turned to their own Confusion. But when afterward they were favoured and admitted to a nearer Converse with our Princes, Statesmen and Bishops, they pre­sently found their Advantage to put in practice other Policies of a more deep, subtile, and dangerous Nature, and under the cover of very plausible Pretences, whereby they and their Venome might insinuate the deeper. These were princi­pally Three; 1. To change the Government, and make it Arbitrary and Absolute in the Prince. 2. To raise and heighten Divisions. 3. To corrupt the Manners of the Na­tion.

1. To endeavour a Change of the Government, they saw several Reasons. 1. They plainly saw it to be utterly un­practicable to deal with the other two Estates, to introduce their Religion. 2. They also understood very well that such [Page 13]endeavours might be so managed as to ingratiate them with the Prince, and many of the Courtiers, Ministers of State, and of the aspiring Clergy. 3. They also foresaw, that by slighly insinuating into the Prince, and his Favourites and Flatterers, such matters as tended to this; they should also by the same means promote their other design of raising Divisions between the Prince and the People.

2. To raise and heighten Divisions, they easily saw would not only weaken and dissolve the strength of the Nation, but would also give them a fair opportunity to shelter them­selves under one Party or other, as they should see occasion. These Advantages they might expect by Civil Dissentions; and these and some more by Divisions also about matters of Religion, and therefore they industriously promoted both.

3. And to corrupt the manners of the Nation, they might expect would give them these Advantages, 1. It would weaken the strength of the Nation, making men more in­considerate and careless of any Publick Concern, and indis­posing them for either Prudent Counsel or Generous Action. 2. It would make them more indifferent in matters of Re­ligion, and less apt to give them any disturbance in the prosecution of their Designs. 3. And this indifference would dispose them to the more easie admission of theirs when it should be seasonably and prudently proposed to them under some plausible pretences.

These were the Principal of their Policies, and the Grounds of them; which were rational enough, though it pleased God, who hath the Hearts of all Men at his disposal, by his over-ruling Providence, in his own time, to defeat them all. But the Contrivances, Methods, and particular Practices, which they used for the promotion of these Poli­cies and Designs, were too many to be here discovered; nor is that my business at this time. I shall therefore only take notice of such as are pertinent to the present occasion, that is, such as aspiring Courtiers and Clergymen joyned with them in, though for different ends of their own, and such as we have still reason to beware of: Such as these;

1. Magnifying the Regal Power upon false Principles, be­yond its true bounds, according to the English Constitution, and Vilifying our Laws in general, as rude and barbarous; and the Fundamentals of our Constitution, which limit and restrain the Excesses of Regal Power, as encroachments of the People upon Prerogative, and so possessing the King and many honest welmeaning People, not sufficiently acquainted with the Excellence of our Laws and Constitutions, with False, Dangerous, and Pernicious Notions concerning our Go­vernment. And having by this means prepared the way, and insinuated themselves into Favour, they never failed of some Project for their own ends, though never so illegal, to put the King upon encouraging him to despise the just com­plaints of the People, as clamours, and that which was below his Majesty to be aw'd by. And because this could not but move all truly Loyal, honest and understanding Men, who saw the dangerous Consequences to the King, as well as to the People, of such Courses; it was very natural and easie to them to represent all such as Persons of Antimo­narchical and Republican Principles. And always by how much the more notorious and illegal were their Practices, by so much the greater and lowder were the clamours a­gainst the Commonwealth Principles, and the noise of the Dangers threatning the Monarchy. And by this means were our Kings kept in continual Jealousie and ill Opinion of ma­ny of their best, most honest, Loyal and most faithful Subjects.

But they could never have proceeded so far in these things had they not by inculcating false Notions concerning one branch of the Regal Office, the Calling, Proroguing, and Dissolving of Parliaments, and suggesting false Fears and Dangers of the consequence of their Sitting, often prevailed with those Kings to abuse the Trust, in that respect reposed in them, contrary to the Constitution of this Government, to the most ancient Laws of this Nation, to the true intent and meaning of the Statutes, then and still in Force, and to their own true interest and safety, as I shall shew hereafter.

By these means were our Civil Dissentions begun, and by degrees continually heightened, till by these Practices, and the like, in matters of Religion, in the Year Forty one, they involved the King in a Civil War to make good those illegal Practices, which they before had engaged him in, and by consequence in an ill Cause, against as good a Parliament, as perhaps this Nation ever had. This will seem strange to some to come from me, who was from my Youth on the Kings side, and at Fifteen Years of Age ventured my life for his Service. But I know what I say, and will presently make it clear. The King might have trusted that Parliament, they would never have hurt him, or diminished any thing of his true Prerogative, but have secured him and it against the Abuses put upon him and the whole Nation, by evil Men, under pretence of it, if he durst but have truested them. This is very plain from the Prevalence of that part of the Parliament, which, although the King had withdrawn ano­ther part to Oxford, which would certainly have joyned with them, were yet able to carry the Vote, That the Kings Concessions were Satisfactory: Nor were that part, which af­terward brought the King to his Tryal, able to have carried any thing against him, had they not first by Force, which had never been raised, had not the King been carried away by his criminal Favorites, secluded most of the Principal men of the other part. But though the King might have trusted them, yet were there those about him, who conscious of their own guilt, having been the evil Counsellors and Promoters of those illegal Practices, which occasioned the War, durst not stand the Tryal; and therefore, having first betrayed him into those mischiefs before mentioned, betrayed him now a second time, by withdrawing him for their own security from the Parliament, and with him divers Members of both Houses, who would have been more serviceable there both to him and to the Kingdom, and so at length in­volved him in that fatal Civil War, for their own defence, which brought him to that unhappy end. These were the [Page 16]true Authors of that War; and these are the Forty one Men, who deserve to be remembred with no less detestation by all Posterity, than those of Forty eight, who only finished what the others had begun. This I have related the more largely, because I see the same wicked Practices carried on by the Ringleaders of those, who have Forty one much in their Mouths; and they who are not satisfied with may Reason, may see it, if they please, confirmed by Authority of King and Parliament, in the Preamble of the Act of Attainder, 12. Car. 2. c. 30.

2. The Methods for raising and heightning the Differ­ences in the Church, were first by improving the Prejudices which King James had conceived against some Zealots in Scotland, into like prejudice, first against the Puritans in England, then against all truly Religious and Conscientious People, as Puritans and Precisians; and at last against all who discovered any great warmth against Popery. By this means Formality and Indifference in Religion was brought into fa­shion and encouraged, and sincere Religion and Devotion slighted and discountenanced: And for this purpose was the Book of Sports upon the Lords day set out, and ordered to be Read in Churches, and many good men put out of their Livings for refusing to Read it. And when by these means, Formality and Popery being favoured, and sincere Religion not only slighted, but oppressed contrary to Law, discontents could not but rise; these were again made use of to represent the best part of the Nation as ill affected to Monarchy and the Church, because they began to be sensible of the ap­proaches of Tyranny and Popery, and of the over-speading of Formality. And this is the true Original of the great outcries, The Monarchy, and The Church being in danger, (as indeed they were, but the one of degenerating into Tyranny, and the other into mear Formality, if not Popery) whereby multitudes were imposed upon to put their helping hands to overturn both one way, while they were craftily made believe, that others were doing it the other; for these had their influence in producing the late Civil War in conjunction with those before mentioned.

3. By the same means was the Foundation laid for the Corruption of the Manners of the Nation: But by what Means and Methods that was promoted before the Kings Restau­ration, and afterward rais'd to that height in his Reign, is not much to my present purpose, though we feel the ill effects thereof, and are still like to do so, if they be not re­formed.

The Dismal Consequences of these things to the King, to the Church, and to the whole Nation, sad Experience at length taught her careless and inconsiderate Scholars, who disregard­ed the milder and safer Admonition of Provident Wisdom: And though the Effects and Consequences were such, as one would think should not easily or quickly be forgotten; yet because the Practices and Causes are so little understood or considered by a great part of the Nation, that they seem disposed to be as much imposed upon again, and run into the like Confusions, to this brief and plain Narrative I will add some few Observations to stop the Current, and give some warning against the Danger.

And First, To such as have any Sense of Religion, and Acquaintance with the Works and Methods of the Di­vine Providence, it will not be hard to perceive, That the Original of all those Evils, in which King James involved himself and his Family, was his Deserting of that great Duty of Trust and Considence in, and firm Dependance upon that Providence, which had with so much case and safety brought him to the Throne of these Kingdoms beyond his ex­pectation, and given him so great an Experiment of its Pro­tection, by so amazing a Deliverance from so great and im­minent a Danger, and applying himself to vain worldly Wisdom, in seeking Security by Compliance and Alliances with Enemies; those very Enemies, from whose subtile Ma­chinations he had been so admirably delivered; and prosti­tuting his Religion to those Politicks, which was somewhat of Kin to the Sin of Jeroboam, which stuck so close to his House.

Secondly, The immediate Evil, which he and his Family thereby incurred, was a most just and suitable Punishment, viz. To be deserted by that Providence, which he first deserted, and be given up Rehoboam-like to the evil and pernicious Counsels of those flattering and deceitful Favourites, whom they chose and adhered to. This was one and a special part of the Fate of the Family, out of which they never extricated themselves, though they had divers fair Opportunities, and very cogent Motives offered to them, to have done it.

Thirdly, That which exposed him and them the more to this Fate, and intangled them the deeper therein, was an in­satiable Desire and Affectation of an absolute Dominion, which was not so much satisfied, as inlarged by the Accession of those two Crowns of England and Ireland to his former one of Scotland; and a certain Degeneracy of mind, the usual effect of unjustifiable Actions, or insincere Designs, which made them neglect the Legal Privy Council, and avoid the Presence of Parliaments, as People in a Fault do the sight of their best Friends, till some necessity constrain them. And this gave Opportunity and Encouragement to those Evil Counsellors to entangle them more and more in illegal Pro­jects and Practices; which made them so much the more afraid of Parliaments, to whom it belongs to enquire and consider of such matters, and adhere the faster to those Fa­vourites, till they became so united to them, that they thought themselves struck at in whatever was done or pro­posed against them.

Fourthly, This made them easie to be perswaded to be­lieve that it was their Prerogative to Call, and Prorogue, and Dissolve Parliaments at their own Pleasure; and accordingly to do it, in effect at the pleasure, that is, at the perswasion of those Favourites: Whereas not only the Notion is false, and set up only for the Advantage of Favourites and Crimi­nals; but the Practice was doubly mischievous to the Kings themselves. For 1. It was a great cause of Discontent, heightned the Differences between the King and the People, [Page 19]and made the Kings Cause so much the worse in those Dif­ferences, and unjustifiable, being often times a wilful and ob­stinate refusal of Justice, and Protection of Criminals against the whole Nation. 2. It deprived the King, as well as the People, of the proper Remedy of those Mischiefs. For Par­liaments are the great Security under God of Kings from Abuses, as well as of the People from Oppression; and the Persons were either Guilty, or Not Guilty: If Guilty, they ought to be try'd, and either suffer according to their Crimes; or, if there were any special reason for it, be par­don'd. If not Guilty, yet ought they to be try'd, that their Innocence might be cleared, and the Nation satisfy'd.

Fifthly, The same may be observ'd concerning the great Noise that was made of the Monarchy, and the Church, as if both were design'd to be presently destroyed; which were nothing but false Clamours to incense People, and raise a Fa­ction, by the Instigation of those evil Men for their own sup­port and defence against Justice. The just Punishment of Criminals, who betrayed both King and People, was the Destruction of Monarchy, and Reformation of the manners of the Clergy, the Subversion of the Church, in their ac­count. But by these means were a great many honest well-meaning People impos'd upon, and a mighty Faction rais'd. Whereas it is certain, that the English Monarchy, being not meerly an Honorary matter, but of great Use and Advan­tage to the whole Nation both at home and abroad, if it be not abused, the People and their Representatives in Parlia­ment, have always so well understood their Interest therein, and do so at this day; that nothing but some extraordinary matter ever could, or can alienate their Affections from it. This is plain in the case of King Charles I. when notwithstand­ing the great Provocations which are set out in the Remon­strance of the State of the Kingdom, 15 Dec. 1642. and some others, that Parliament would neither have destroyed the Monarchy, nor hurt the King, (though out of those Confu­sions a violent Party was rais'd, which did both) nor would [Page 20]the Nation after be quiet till his Son was restored. And for the Church, the Bishops and Ecclesiastical Courts, might have been quiet, had they been truly Christian, as they would be called. But that, which moved the Indignation of most understanding and honest Men against them, was to see Christianity prophan'd, and Offices of Religion sought and used as Secular Employments; to see Formality encou­raged, sincere Piety (though perhaps mixt with some un­necessary Scrupulosity) oppressed, and the Ministers of the Righteous Kingdom of Christ turn Promoters of Arbitrari­ness and Tyranny. And it is no wonder if such Causes pro­duce such Effects.

Sixthly, It was the raising and heightning of that Faction by the Favourites and Criminal Party, that brought things to that Extremity of a War, which otherwise might have been com­posed, and all satisfy'd with the Removal of a few Evil Men from about the King, the Punishment of a few Crimi­nals, and the Reformation of a few necessary things. But while these Evil Counsellors and Favourites raised that Fa­ction, for the security of themselves under the pretence of the King and the Church, they thereby laid the Foundation of the real Destruction of both for some time. And I wish all honest Men may take warning by it now, and not suffer themselves to be impos'd upon again after such an Example. For there is Just such another Faction, which hath gone very high of late, especially in the business of Elections under the same Pretences of the Monarchy, and the Church, wherein the greatest Sticklers were those sort of Persons, which the Vindicators of the last years Transactions recommend to Favour, that is, the Criminals of the two last Reigns, the Counsellors, Agents and Accomplices of King James, and the Regency-men and Haesitators, who refuse to act under King William, with whom the Papists joyned under-hand. And their greatest Opposition was for the most part against such as were most Cordial and Active for the present King and Queen.

I have but one thing more to observe, which comes now into my mind, and hath not been so well considered as it ought; and that is the great and mischievous Influence, which such prodigal and unadvised conferring of Honours, as was begun by King James I. and has been continued fince, is apt to have in the producing of such Troubles. Honor and Riches are things, which may be of good use for the Bene­fit of others, when they fall to the share of Good Men, who have Hearts to make use of them for that purpose. But I very much doubt, whether ever any Man was the better for them? On the contrary it is apparent, that many, nay most, are the worse for them, if they be raised much above their own Rank. And it is certain that they are no good Men, who are very greedy of either; but such as will comply with the Means, whereby they are to be obtained, be they what they will. If the Prince, who hath the disposing of Honors and Preferments, be wise and vertuous, be sparing and pru­dent, in conferring them only upon consideration of Worth and Merit; it will be an effectual means to incline the Peo­ple to apply themselves to such means, which will be of great advantage to the Commonwealth. But if he be pro­digal and inconsiderate in the disposing of them, he will not fail to attract to him many ill Men of no vertue, who will certainly flatter and deceive him; make it their business to please him for their own advantage, at any rate, rather than faithfully serve him. And the more Honours he confers upon such, the greater Burden he thereby brings upon him­self: He must provide for his own Creatures; and if he hath not good and lawful means to provide for them, they will not fail of Projects even of indirect means by him to pro­vide for themselves. Besides, the Appetite is unsatiable: The Man's no more satisfy'd when made a Lord, than when but a Knight; I'm sure not more happy; nor when made an Earl, than when but a Baron; nor when made a Marques, than when but an Earl; but a Baron, but a Knight, but a private Gentleman. But he needs more; his Needs are in­creased, [Page 22]and must be supplied one way or other. And from this Root did spring many of those Illegal Projects in the Reigns of King James I. and King Charles I. which in the end produced those bitter Fruits we have been speaking of.

And now to return to our merciful Vindicator. He makes me think of the vulgar Observation of March, that it comes in like a Lion, and goes out like a Lamb; and he shews himself a right March Bird. Our Laws were not severe enough with him at the beginning to punish the Author of the Reflections, whom yet he dares not charge with any want of kindness to his Majesty, v. p. 2. But he must fetch a Precedent as far as Venice, to shew the heinousness of his Crimes in prying into Secrets of State, to be no less than what is punishable with Death. But when he comes to King James's Counsellors, &c. how is the Lion changed into the Lamb! But alas! it is only to those good People. So kind to them, that one would think that this Vindicator had had some hand in the Letter and Bill of Pardon for King James, which was found in the Speakers Chair. But to the Author of the Reflections he presently turns Lion again, at least puts on the Lions Skin. If he but complain for the just and ne­cessary Assertion of our present Settlement, that not one of King James's Instruments has been brought to condign Pu­nishment; how does this Lion roar and storm at this as a Revengeful Spirit, that would drench the World in Blood! &c.

But the truth is, it seems but a Copy of his Countenance, a meer personated Fury to please some body. But what their Sentiments are, who were to be pleased with this, is not hard to be understood. They were, it seems, not on­ly for Pardon, but for Preferment too, for those honest Gentlemen, as such as do deserve the return of our Gratitude. Sure this Writer had a mind to try his Skill in Oratory, and after the Example of Carneades, try what he could add to his Oration against Justice. And I should have thought that Carneades had got a new Set of Scholars amongst us, since the [Page 23]late Revolution. For since I wrote the last Period, I met with another Vindication so like this, that I dare presume the Authors of both are pretty near of Kin. Only I find this vast difference between him and them: What he did innocently only for a Tryal of Skill, to shew his Wit and Oratory, and what an ingenious Man might be able to say on an ill Subject; these Men do in good earnest, that is, strain all their Faculties to the utmost in a real opposition of Justice. Nay, those who not long since strain'd all their Wit and Parts, and the Law it self, to take away Mens Lives under pretence of Justice, contrary to Law, now strain all to exempt the most notorious Criminals, deserving the greatest Severity from condign Punishment, by an Indefinite Act of Oblivion, and Ʋniversal Indempnity, wherein I must confess they act very uniformly, before in suppressing, and now in opposing of Law and Justice, and always for their own Interest.

So it must be; or, if we suppose them to believe that there is any such thing as Justice at all, it must be granted that they have different Sentiments concerning the Crimes than we imagine, or however, than we have. And this is plainly the Truth. The one, in effect, will admit no Crime in King James precedent to his Departure. And the other will admit none in his Ministers, Officers or Instruments. That, which we take to be Justice in that case, he calls Ven­geance and Revenge, and those who are for it, Blood-hounds, Bellowers for Vengeance, Hot-headed Animals, &c. What we take to be great and notorious Crimes, he reputes Points Justifiable, or at least doubtful, wherein the Justice of inflicting Punishments can never be vindicated; and begs the Readers Pardon for the Impropriety of calling them Punishments, though he will not name their proper Term. And a little after, Actions done in the last or former Reigns, about which the World hath been so much divided, if Lawful or not. And if this be not sufficient to declare his Sentiments, concerning his proposed Indefinite Act of Oblivion and universal In­demnity, [Page 24]he tells us plainly, Lastly, Its consistent with, and promotive of the Truest and Highest Justice, (that is, for King James) For in most of the Cases (the thirteen Heads he had mentioned before, viz. The Heads Voted 23 Jan. to be Crimes for which some Persons may justly be excepted out of the Bill of Indemnity) the Law is doubtful. And to punish Opinion in matters of Law, is as unjust as to prosecute Mi­stakes in matters of Religion is unchristian. So that here we have a Vindication, not indeed of the last Years Transactions, but what is more, of the Transactions of the last or former Reigns. And if this be good, my Opinion, which according to this Lawyers Judgment is not punishable, being in matter of Law, is, That King William hath no good Title, but he's a meer Usurper, and we have catch'd at an advan­tage against an Innocent Man upon a timerous Flight or Departure, to keep him from his Right. My Opinion in this matter I have publish'd in Print more than once, and therefore will not repeat it here. But this is so evident a Consequence of what he saith, that it is his Opinion, that I know not with what Colour or Pretence he could deny it if he would. Other Consequences of his Discourse I take no no­tice of, because not pertinent to my present purpose. But I think I may reasonably recommend it to the consideration of the Dissenters, as that which may in some things afford as proper Topicks for them, as for any sort of People of this Nation, that I know; and may be alledged with much more reason for them, than for his Party of Criminals. Veritas praevalebit one time or other.

By what hath been said I suppose it is very evident, that the Authors of The last Years Transactions Vindicated, and of the three Parts of The Magistracy and Government of England Vindicated, are near of Kin, at least in their Principles, and Sentiments of the present Government under King William and Queen Mary, and of their Right and Title thereunto, and in the General Scope of these Writings, as near as in their Titles. And therefore this last coming so opportunely [Page 25]to my hand, it doth not only confirm my Opinion of the former, but gives me a fair occasion to consider the matter of both, so far as concerns my Subject, with one and the same Labour. And therefore before I proceed to speak of the Punishment of the Criminals in our Case, this Gentleman being a Lawyer, gives me occasion to consider of the Law by which they may be punished: For if there be no Law for it, he is in the right, That they are not properly Punish­ments, but Violence, where the Justice of the thing is not clear and undoubted. And so much by the way. I hope he will give me leave to say of the Executions of Stephen Colledge, my Lord Russel, Colonel Sidney, Sir Thomas Armstrong, &c. that they were Violences, that is, in plain English, most deli­berate, wilful and wicked Murders, being committed un­der Colour and Pretence of Law; of most of which Judg­ment hath been reversed by Authority of Parliament; and that I think it differs not much in the fight of God, whether a Man have his Hand or his Tongue dip'd therein. And I doubt not but the great and good Sir Matthew Hale would have been of the same Opinion; which this Gentleman, who gives him those deserved Characters, will find some Reason to believe, if he please to peruse but The Account of the Good Steward, concerning the Gift of Elocution.

But to the business. The Votes of 23 Jan. have enume­rated thirteen Heads of Crimes, for every one of which some Persons may be excepted out of the Bill of Indemnity. A­gainst all Punishments of these our Lawyer takes Exception, as Punishments never declared or promulged, and which by the Standing Laws and Common Justice of the Realm could not be in­flicted. That is to say, They are neither Treason, Felony, nor Misdemeanours: For, for all those there are Punishments declared, and to be inflicted by the Standing Laws and Com­mon Justice of the Realm. I must add, Nor Crimes punish­able by any Statute. And this is the least that these Words can imply. So that we must suppose that they are nothing like any of those we meet with in the Impeachments, In­dictment, [Page 26]Articles, &c. against those Flatterers, and Evil Counsellors and Instruments of Princes, which my Lord Coke mentions in his Chapter of Flattery, or any others to be found in our Records, Books of Entries, Reports, or Sta­tutes, not so much as those concerning the High-Commission Court, 17 Car. I. But the contrary of all this is so well known to all who have looked into the Records and Books afore­said, that it is as needless as improper for this Paper to offer to recite them. But in stead of that, I will shew him that which is more, that is, That the Parliament may declare those things to be Treason, (the punishment whereof is sufficiently known) which never were, nor can now by the Ordinary Judges (though in the late Reigns they are believ'd to have exceeded their Bounds) be judged such; and that by the express Words of the Statute 25 E. 3. And because that ma­ny other like Cases of Treason may happen in time to come, which a man cannot think or declare at this present time, it is accorded, That if any other Case supposed Treason, which is not above specified, doth happen before any Justices, the Justices shall tarry without any going to Judgment of the Treason, till the Cause be shewed, and declared before the King and his Parliament, whether it ought to be adjudged Treason or other Felony. Besides, for such Crimes as are of their own Nature great Crimes, and not meerly by some positive Law of the State, there is neither Law nor Reason why the Legislative Authority in any State should not order and inflict such Punishments as they deserve. And among those may doubtless be reckoned all such as have a direct tendency to the Subversion of the Laws and Government of any State [...] But Treason against the Kingdom, as well as against the King, may be found in our Books of Law and History.

And now I know not what most to admire in this Gentle­man, his profound Skill in the Law, the Modesty of his Asserti­ons, or his Honesty and Conscience. I cannot but think him a very proper Person to have been one of the Servants of for­mer Crowns, one of the last Kings Ministers, Officers or Instru­ments [Page 27]of Justice: He was certainly well qualify'd for lit, and his Zeal for their Vindication discovers that he had some concern of his own in it. And so confident a Gentleman, and so qualify'd, one would think should get in somewhere now; at least into the Parliament, and no doubt but set up by the Faction, and a great stickler there; one of those, who are recommended by our Vindicators not only for Par­don and Indemnity, but for Favour and Employment to our present King. And no doubt but he will be well served by them, as well as he was the last Year.

I cannot let this pass without some further Reflection. It is not at all besides the Design of my Writing, and no great Digression from that particular matter I am now upon. Our other Vindicator tells us, that His Majesty came a Stranger to England, and but darkly informed of the true. Arcana of the last two Reigns, and of the Practices and Principles of particular Men; it being so much their interest to vail them from his View: Whence it is to be suppos'd, that at his coming to the Go­vernment, the Representation made him of Persons and Things, could not but receive a Tincture of the many different Principles and Interests of those who made them. Considering which, it's no wonder that in such a Maze of Business and Mist of various Representations, his Majesty's Bounty might happen to to be mis­plac'd in some one or other, page 29. I know not any thing more truly and reasonably said by that Writer. It was in­deed a great Disadvantage his Majesty was under, being unacquainted with the Principles and Interests of Persons. And as that was just Cause both of Caution in the Choice, and of Excuse of him from any ill Choice upon the recom­mendation of others; so doth it aggravate the Fault of such recommendations, and recommend the Service of such as detect them. I shall therefore, for the more comple at De­tection of some ill Men, to what I have before observed, add this for Confirmation.

1. That the Persons concerned in these Vindications are Men of dangerour Principles in respect of the present Govern­ment. [Page 28]For if these Crimes be not punishable by Law, then are all they, who invited the Prince of Orange to come in with an Army, and all that associated with him, Traytors; and he himself an Invader and Usurper.

2. They are Men of Arbitrary Principles, and so dangerous to the Nation, and the true ancient Constitution of this Govern­ment. For if these Crimes be not punishable by Law, our English Monarchy is gone, and we are already fallen into a French or Turkish Tyranny.

3. They are dangerous Persons to be employed or trusted in respect of their Genius, Men of smooth voluble Tongues, and of Confidence to impose any thing. Of which I could add divers Instances to those I have noted before: But I will add only this, because it may serve also for another pur­pose: He tells us, If the thirteen Heads, &c. had been reduced into a Law—one third at least of the Nation had been involved, who with their disoblig'd Relations and Dependents, is not so contemptible a Flock, &c. Now if every one of this third part had but one Relative or Dependent, they would make two thirds; if two, they would make the compleat num­ber of the Nation; but if many of them have 10, 20, 100, as many certainly have, they would far exceed the number of the People of this Nation. This I the rather mention, be­cause I doubt not but they do greatly impose upon some Persons, with this Pretence of their Number, which is false; and would be much less than it is, if they had not some­where met with more Encouragement, than they expected.

4. They are of the very same kind and Genius with those Forty-One Mea I mentioned before, who by their Flatteries to raise themselves, imposed upon King Charles I. and so oc­casioned that Bloody War: And again in the beginning of the Reign of King Charles II. to cover the Illegal Actions of themselves or their Friends, imposed upon the whole Parlia­ment, being then in a Transport, those Declarations and Clauses in some Acts, which are the occasions of the Mistakes and Dissatisfaction of divers honest well-meaning Men now, and [Page 29]of such Dissention an very much discompose and interrupt our compleat Settlement.

These being so dangerous Persons both to the King and Kingdom, and having many (though not so many as is pre­tended) of their Party and Principles, it cannot but be ne­cessary that not only the King he cautious not to employ or entrust them in any great matters, but that some good Pro­vision be made also by Parliament to secure both against them. And what less can that be, than an Act of Recognition, that the present King and Queen are rightful and lawful King and Queen, and to disable all Persons from sitting in Parliament, or to hold any Place or Office of Authority or Trust, who do not believe the same, and upon Oath declare such their Relief and Recognitions accordingly?

And now for Bunishments. In all Punishments two things are to be considered: The Proportion in respect of the Crime, and the Consequence. And as to the Crimes, it may be fit to be considered in our Case, Whether besides the Thirteen Heads of Crimes committed in the last Reigns, ex­pressed in the Votes, there have not been some of like na­ture already committed in this, for which some Persons may justly be excepted out of such Bill of Indemnity? viz. Such as these.

1. The publishing of such Libels, as by denying the Justice (of punishing the) Crimes aforesaid, de manifestly undermine the very Grounds of our present Settlement, and the true Constitution of the English Government.

2. The advising the present King to such things, as being done by the former Kings contrary to Law, seems to justifie their Illegal Actions, prejudice his own Cause, and tend to the disturbance of the Government again. And it may be some others.

As to the Punishment, Proportion and good Consequence are always to be regarded. And therefore,

1. When the Punishment is less in Proportion than the Crime, and the Consequence of Necessity or great Importance [Page 30]for a future Security, of other publick Good, it is not Mer­cy, but Injustice and Imprudence to forbear it, and a great­er kindness to Criminals than to the Innocent.

Such is the Excluding and disabling such Persons from Trusts and Employments, is by former Violations and Mis­demeanors have shewed themselves unfit to be further trusted.

This hath indeed something Penal in it, but so little, that it is nor properly a Punishment, but a necessary provi­dent Provision. This is the Case of the late King (of which more in the Apology for Mr. St.) and of his Counsellors and Agents. They who betray'd their Country and him­self too by Evil Counsel or Compliance, ought not present­ly to be admitted to Employments and Offices of Trust, or to sit in Parliament. Neither ought they to be returned, for they are not in truth beni & legates homines. I speak not of all his Counsellors, &c. without distinction, as the mercena­ry. Writer falsly suggests; but Evil Counsellors, &c. who betrayed him as well as their Country.

It will be a Blot and Mark of Ignominy upon this Gene­ration to all Posterity, to suffer those persons to sit as judges, where those Crimes are to be considered, whereof they them­selves are notoriously guilty. And upon this occasion I must say farther, That it is a Dishonourable and an unreasonable thing, to suffer persons who have: rashly (to say no more) foul'd their Hands in Innocent Blood, to fit in that Assembly; to suffer their Counsels, which should be Sacred, to be pro­faned by such Company. Dishonourable and unreasonable are too soft Words for that; but I may very well use them concerning the permitting of Minors, who are disable diary Law to dispose of their own Estates, to sit there. The Ho­nour and Dignity of Parliaments ought to be preserved? And therefore also, they who did presume to Elect the same person to serve in this, who was expelled the House the last Parliament, for their Affront to the House ought to be cor­rected, [Page 31]at least by turning out Their Member again, and al­lowing them no new Writ. For they deserve not to have a Representative in such an Assembly, which they would pre­sume so factiously to affront; nor he to have a place there, who had so little regard to the Honour of it, and so little consideration of what did become those who chose him. I write not this out of any Ill Will to any person, but out of great Good Will for the Honour and Service of my King and Country. In such as are obnoxious, certainly Modesty, to abstain and retire for some time, would be the greatest Prudence. But such as will impudently threst themselves in, ought deservedly to be thrust out. The Honour of a Go­vernment ought not to be prostituted for the sake of par­ticular persons, be their Quality what it will. Nor are they Men of Vertue or Worth, who would serve themselves at that rate. The Kingdom wants not Men of unspotted and untainted Honesty and Fidelity to be employed: But usually the worst are most forward.

Secondly, When the Punishment bears a just proportion to the Crimes, it ought generally speaking, to be inflicted for the Maintenance of Justice, and Restraint of Evil. But there may be special Reasons in respect of the Consequence, either to inflict the Punishment, or pardon the Offenders.

Amongst the Thirteen Heads of Crimes, there are two at least, which I take to be Treason, and ought to be adjudg­ed so by Parliament, viz. The first concerning the Dispensing Power, and the third concerning the Commission for Eccle­siastical Causes. I know there is another Punishment of, this last by the Statute of 17 Car. I. ch. 11. But in this Case the manifest Intention and Design of the King and the Con­spirators by those means to subvert the Government and the Laws, make them both Treason.

These Crimes are of so high a Nature, and the King him­self having already suffer'd for the same Cause, both Justice and Prudence require, that all the Criminals, by whose Un­faithfulness and Compliance the King was encouraged to those [Page 32]Evil Courses, be brought to Tryal, and have Sentence. Not only Justice, but Prudence doth require this, to assort a just and honest Cause, and to terrifie such as should dare to be con­cerned in such base and wicked Courses hereafter. But above all, the Judges and Bishops, who betray'd also their own Pro­fessions, ought to be made Examples. What special Reasons there may be to mitigate any part of the Punishment in any of them, they being not many, belongs to the Parliament to consider: But in general, they ought to be good and weighty.

On the other side, when the Offenders are many, and the Grime and Punishment Capital, it is usual and reasonable to punish only the Principals and most notorious, and to par­don all the rest, as in cases of Rebellion and Insurrections; because of the Evil Consequence of taking away the Lives of so many Persons, whereof perhaps many were missed by the Principal of them, and might prove good Men after­ward. In such cases they are all to be looked upon as one Body, and the taking off the Heads and Principals of them, is a kind of a capital Punishment of that Body of Men.

But when the Crime and Punishment are of a lower Na­ture, as Misdemeanors, (which being very various, the Pu­nishment is more discretionary, as Fine, or Fine and Imprison­ment both, according to the nature of the Crime) it is not so, nor is there any reason it should: For a Pecuniary Punish­ment may be inflicted on many without any Inconvenience. And in the present Cases it may be proportioned according to the Rates assessed upon the Criminals in some of the late Taxes; and some Disabilities might very properly be made part of the Punishment. But in these discretionary Punish­ments, divers things are to be taken into consideration. And one or two I will mention on the side of Mercy: 1. The Example of our Heavenly father now, in our own ease, who hath shewed Mercy, and sent so great a Deliverance, not­withstanding the sinful and wicked state of the Nation. 2. The Papists and the wicked Examples of those late Popish [Page 33]Kings, have been the principal Corrupters of the Manners of the Nations; and therefore if they who have been mislead by them, suffer not so deep, as otherwise they ought, it is but reasonable.

So much for Punishment of Criminals, and now for Pre­ferment. The Vindicators think it an Invasion upon the Kings own Liberty, to deny him the use of such Persons, as through the Temptations and Snares of a Court were guilty of Compliance in things blamable, &c. if their great Parts and Acquaintance with Affairs of State make them necessary: I have known some persons cry'd up for notable, cunning and shrew'd Men, whom when I have hapned to understand more neerly, I have found to be Men of Craft indeed, but such as did con­sist; not so much in greater Knowledge of Business than other Men had, as in the use of a greater Latitude in Acting than some other Men would use. And such Persons may be so far from being necessary to a Prince, that they may be dangerous. As I remember one of those cunning Men I men­tion'd, being apply'd to by three Persons then of good Cre­dit, for his Advice in a Cause, easie to have been relieved in Chancery, as it was afterwards, by his Cunning involv'd them all, and some others for Witnesses, in a notorious For­gery, Subornation and Perjury. Parts without Fidelity, which is inconsistent with Compliance in Blamable things, ought not to recommend any Man to a Prince's Service. This I say to shew the Insufficiency of his Argument in that part. Nor am I so rigorous, as not to agree with him in the for­mer, as he states the Case; only the person ought to be ve­ry necessary, and the Prince to be very cautious how far he relies upon him. Nay, I will go further with him, and suppose the Person stand accused, or even impeach'd in Parliament, I would not deny him the use of such a person, in due time, that is, when he hath been try'd, and either cleared and acquitted, or for some special good cause legally pardon'd. Otherwise that, which those persons say is an Invasion upon the Kings Liberty, to deny him, is an affront [Page 34]to the Government, tends to the Subversion of the Constitution, and to the disparagement of the present Cause both of the King and Kingdom, makes it look like a matter of Trick and Violence, and not as I take it to be, of clear and ne­cessary Justice. The Protection and Employment of Cri­minals being one of the great Grievances of former Reigns, and as pernicious to the Kings as to the People. And if this be the Case of any person now employed, he cannot be a a good Man, or worthy of any Favour at all, if he would, desire his own Security at the rate of so great an Inconve­nience both to the King, and to the Government, and especi­ally under our present Circumstances; and not rather wil­lingly retire for some time, and if innocent, modestly put himself upon a fair Tryal; or if Guilty of any thing consi­derable, humbly submit and beg Pardon. And this is the truest Wisdom in such case: For they who obstinately stand out in such cases, do usually bring mischief to them­selves or the King; and the more highly they carry it out among Men, the more they provoke the Judgments of God upon themselves, of Excision, or in some remarkable man­ner, according to the Nature of the Crime. All Courts and Judicatures ought to maintain their Authority, and so much the more, when notoriously violated, or when there are any attempts to evade or oppose it. And especially at this time when we are either doing Justice and Equity against the late King himself, or plainly playing Tricks with him, and expo­sing the Iniquity of our own Hearts.

There is but one thing more, which I think worth my taking notice of in this Pamphlet, (for Trifles I have passed over good store all along) and that is what he saith, pag. 32. that The Calling, or Dissolving of Parliaments is ordinarily one of the most mysterious Problems of State, and one of the tru­est Touchstones of Skill in the Art of Government. To Men of ill Designs, or who understand not the true Constitution of this Government, it may be so indeed: But to honest and understanding Men nothing is more easie. It was the Law [Page 35]of this Nation before Magna Charta, or any Statute now in Force was made, and it is still the Law, That Parliaments be held once a year, or oftner if need be. And I will tell this Gentleman in the Words of King James I. that which will effectually explain this Mystery, and solve the Problem. A King (says he) governing in a setled Kingdom, leaves to be a King, and degenerates into a Tyrant, as soon as he leaves off to rule according to his Laws. And a little after, Therefore all Kings, that are not Tyrants, or Perjured, will be glad to bound themselves within the Limits of their Laws: And they who per­swade them the contrary, are Vipers and Pests, both against them and the Commonwealth. Speech 21. March, 1609. This most ancient Institution, is not more ancient than wise, useful and necessary, and of a just proportion to the other parts of the Constitution. The Commons in the Counties are represented by the Grand Jury, who are to enquire and present what is amiss there; and the Lords, by the Free-holders, who are the Judges. And as the Counties have their Court once in a Month, the Kingdom their Courts of Common Law for pri­vate and ordinary matters, four times in the year, that is in effect, once in a Quarter, so the whole State had, and still ought to have their Session for Publick and Extraordinary matters concerning the whole Kingdom, once in the year. The great business of this is to enquire into, and inspect the Actions of the Great Officers, Privy Counsellors and Judges, &c. and of the King himself, if he do any thing contrary to Law, and the common Interest of the Nation; to interpret their own Laws, where there is occasion, and resolve other Diffi­culties; to receive and hear Petitions, redress Grievances, and give Relief, &c. And this is an Institution as much for the Honour, Safety and Ease of the Prince, as for the Secu­rity and Commodity of the People. For if the Prince act as he ought to do, by Advice of Privy Council, and of such persons as in their several Places are by Law to advise him: The Parliament, being to convene within the year, must needs be such a Check to them, that they will rarely [Page 36]dare to propose any thing mischievous or illegal; and more rarely be able to bring it to effect; and whatever it be, the King is secure, and the Counsellor or Officer to answer for it. Now an Institution of so great Antiquity, so agreeable to the other parts of our Constitution, of so great Importance in the Government, secured by two several Acts of Parliament in the Reign of that wise and magnanimous Prince Edw. 3. still in force, besides others, ought not cer­tainly to be eluded with vain Pretences of Reason of State, and abused, as it hath been, by the whole last Race of our Kings, to their own hurt, and to the great disturbance, and almost Dissolution of a most Noble Constitution, to gratifie ill Men, by long Intermissions, abrupt Prorogations and Dis­solutions, and by long Continuances for no other reason but to corrupt the Members to betray their Trust. As by Law they ought to be assembled once a year, so ought they also by Law to fit effectually till all Grievances be redressed, and business dispatch'd before their Departure, v. 4. Inst. p. 11. For if our Kings by their Oath, be obliged to Govern according to Law, they are certainly obliged to it in this particular, it being the chief part of the Government. Par­liamentum departiri non debet dummode aliqua Petitio pendeat indiscussa, vel ad minus ad quam non fit determinatum Respon­sum. Et si Rex contrarium permittat perjurus est, saith the Ancient Modus tenendi Parliament. of which Mr. Selden al­lows some Copies he had seen to be as ancient as Edw. 3. Tit. of Hon. p. 611. But this is not a place to insist more largely upon this matter; nor indeed doth it need it.

FINIS.

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