[Page] COMPENDIUM POLITICUM, OR; THE Distempers of Government, Under these two Heads,

  • The Nobilities Desire of RULE.
  • The Commons Desire of LIBERTY.

With their proper Remedies, in a brief Essay on the long Reign of King HENRY III.

By J. Y. of Grayes-Inne, Esq

[...]. Arist: Ethic. lib. 1. cap. 1.

Ars omnis, itemque actio, & propositum aliquod bonum experete videtur.

LONDON, Printed for Robert Clavel, at the Sign of the Peacock in St. Paul's Church-yard 1680.

To his most Ho­noured Uncle, but more worthy Friend, Mr. THOMAS STOCK of Upham in the County of Southamp­ton, Gent.

WHither should we fly for suc­cour against approaching dangers but to such whose goodness and abi­lity [Page] hath both sheltered and protected us heretofore? 'Tis hard for a Cock-boat to venture to confront a Storm, when the ablest Ship must be in a great deal of dan­ger. These Tempestuous times seem to threaten Ship­wrack to the Common­wealth her self, and what must a single member there­of expect, when he steers himself betwixt the violence of Opposite Interests and Factions? Liberty! Li­berty! was too lately the [Page] Cry, when in the consequence the whole Kingdom la­boured under the greatest Tyranny and Slavery; and those that affect the People with that, surprise them to their own purposes, in the unjust and covert pro­pagation of their own af­fected Superiority: Thus you see the Rocks on both sides, and from your ex­emplary moderation I have studied and learned an im­partial guidance in these distractions of time.

[Page] Happy is he who can di­scriminate his Judgement, and (in these times) anchor his Affections in the blessed Haven of Peace, and infal­lible impartiallity. We ought to be as sollicitous about the lawfulness of the means, as about the good­ness of the end; It is a rule in Ethics that Bonum oritur ex integris, and in Christ's Schole, that We must not do evil that good may come of it; and we may possibly pre­vent [Page] future cousenage, if we examine the Lawfulness of every circumstance leading to the end propounded, be­fore we are tickled and transported with the beauty of the pretence. This Ar­mour I have always thought and learned from your ex­cellent Example, and from the Principles laid down by the best Authors to be Faction proof.

This Compendium as your Relation claimes your Care; and under [Page] that pretence the Author is emboldned to thrust it into your Closset. It claimes your perusal, because it is Political, and strikes at the Root of such Errors as are too frequently vi­sible both in the Prince and People: Under the Go­vernment of the first you are concerned in respect to the King's Care, as your Sovereign, and under the Obedience of the latter, with relation to your Duty, and Allegiance as his Sub­ject. [Page] It had been needless to have writ any Epistle at all, had I had no de­signe more necessary, than that of commenting on my Labour (the full Bulk whereof extending it self not beyond the bigness of a moderate Dedicati­on) But the most enforcing enducement was that of taking hold on this occa­sion publickly to exert my gratitude.

And that the World may know how much I am [Page] obliged always to render my self,

Your most faithful Friend and affectionate Nephew JOHN YALDEN.



I Must first be so just to my self as to avoid Pliny's malediction a­against those Thieves who will steal even an whole Au­thor, and not so much as add to the sense one Paragraph, or alter one Syllable in the Phrase, Reprehensione dignum est, Majorum tacere nomina, & eorum sibi appropriare ingenia. Whereas (saith the same Au­thor) [Page] Benignum etenim est & plenum ingenui pudoris fateri per quos profeceris; Nevertheless I can only tell thee this, that I have changed both the Phrase (to a finer Allay) of my Author, I have added many whole Paragraphs and pages to pursue his excellent designe, which he had only framed, not compleated; and which came to my hands in the form of an old musty Ma­nuscript, which was not ca­pable to tell its Author's name, and very difficult to express its designe, being in many places prejudiced by time (that Edax rerum) to a great imperfection. I thought [Page] it therefore best not to thrust it into the World crippled and injured as it was, nor to amend its old expressions with a new sort of Dialect, on purpose to avoid piecing and patching; And if yet a­ny thing of Lameness shall remain, be thou not a No­verca, but rather a Nutrix, ex­tenuate thy Candor and sup­press thy prejudice and if thou pleasest to take the pains thou hast as much right to put it into a better dress, which I commend to thy sufficient ability. Yet never­theless it is expected from some that this will be up­braided with Bastardy, and [Page] be despised and hated as Filius Populi, by that abounding and multitudinous sort of People who are called Partialists, who always wedded to their own particular Lusts and private Interests, that are factious even to Rebellion and Tyran­ny, that will neither give God nor Caesar his due: Notwithstanding it is resol­ved to venture, knowing that no sorrow is sudden to an expectation; And that it will find some (though but a few) that will both commend and protect it. It will Court all but Flatter none: It is the hand that points at The Prin­ces Right and the Peoples Li­berty. [Page] It is that little Costick which will twinge all such whose corruptions are ripe for separation; and though it may make them wince at the touch of their thwarted passions; yet it is the surest means to work the cure, if they will be perswaded to endure the Pain.

The design of this is to sweeten the seeming bitter severities, yet just necessities of Government and render them plausible and palliable to the People, that so they may delight more in their Duty to obey than the Sove­reign in his Power to Com­mand (Legum servi sumus [Page] ut Libri esse possumus, saith Cicero) And the Prince (on whose Head is placed both at once the Weight and Glo­ry of a Crown) and the People may both mutually know (since the burthen of a Crown is first understood before the Glory is percei­ved) that Grandure is both to compensate as well as digni­fy the toyles and difficulties of Government.

Bracton saith Nihil aliud po­test Rex, in terris cum sit Dei Minister & Vicarius, nisi id so­lum quod de jure potest, which is an Axiome that puts reci­procal bounds of Justice and Goodness, both to instruct [Page] the Prince in his Duty and Behaviour towards God and his Subjects, and the People in their due Obedience to their Sovereign, since the King is none, but the Al­mighty's Substitute or Vice-Roy, and consequently to be questioned for his Actions, or punished by none but God himself, who is not to be hastned or directed in the disposition of his Vengeance, but rather entreated by hearty: Prayer for the removal of his Plagues and Judgements.

I stand amazed when I consider the many Factions and Seditions amongst us, that these Kingdoms are not [Page] already the Subjects of irrita­ted Justice: when I hear the open murmurs, and see the many Treasonable Libels in these licentious times; The Prince abused, and the People deceived by Instruments of Darkness and wicked practi­ces, by such men, or rather Monsters, who when they most violently cry up the Kingdomes good under the necessity of reforming the manners of Magistracy, they onely aim at the destruction of Peace and Innocence, which is the hated Object of such devouring Vultures.

Hence I foresee the Immi­nent Dangers and miserable [Page] Calamities that every mo­ment seems to threaten ine­vitable miseries on these di­vided Kingdoms. One may perceive the dreadful storm hanging, as it were, imme­diately over our Heads, We are confounded on all Hands, and the Disease seems almost Remediless; Rome's horrid Plots are not yet fully de­tected, and God knows how much of the Good old Cause remains yet to this day in the Hearts of partial and ill affected Puritans. These two are the Sylla and Charibdis of our misfortunes, and seem to make but one Body, be­cause they aim at one end, [Page] the destruction of our Lives, Religion, and Government.

Let the King and People therefore of the established Church of England take as much care against the ha­tred of a Puritan as against the malice of a Jesuite, the Contrivances of the latter (being commonly prevented) having never acted so vile a Tragedy, as the Principles and Practices of the former. The Pope in all his Bulls and Interdicts cannot fulmi­nate more Maledictions than have been reduced into Prac­tice amongst our Jesuited Fa­naticks.

Let us then beware of [Page] these two; Be obedient to our King; and his Majesty careful both of himself and us; let the Laws be duely practised and observed, and then the King, our Lives, Religion and Government will be safely preserved.



PAge 3. line 23. read such tortious. p. 4. l. 17. r. would not. p. 12. l. 14. r. any matter. p. 16. l. 23. r. as the, l. 25. dele B. p. 18. l. 13. r. and po­pularity. p. 32. l. 7. r. the King's necessities. p. 45. l. 16. r. former restrictions. p. 47. l. 14. r. view of. p. 51. l. 2. r. inraged. p. 51. l. 12. r. So the. p. 60. l. ult. r. and precipitation. p. 61. l. 17. r. almost, l. 21. r. bestowing.

COMPENDIUM POLITICUM, OR, The Distempers of Government, With their proper Remedies, in a short Essay on the long Reign of King HENRY III.

SCarce was that unfortunate Prince, King John, entombed within the bowels of the Earth, but the People, wea­ried with the heavy bur­thens of his time, but more espe­cially with the lingring Calami­ties of Civil Arms, and the af­frighted fall of that Prince, their licentious and unhappy Sovereign; but all men stood at gaze expect­ing the event of their long desires, [Page 2] Peace, and the issue of their new hopes, their own particular bene­fits, for in all changes of Govern­ment, and in every shift of Prin­ces, there are few either so mean or modest, that please not them­selves with some probable object of preferment.

But for the general satisfaction Mat. Paris Hist. minor. and composure of the minds of all, a Child (whose auspitious looks seemed to portend the common good) ascends the Throne; milde and gratious, but easy of nature, whole innocency and natural good­ness (the paths of the Almighty's providence) led him safe along the various dangers of his Father's Reign: Happy was he in his Uncle William Marshall Earl of Pembroke, the guide and moderator of his In­fancy, and his most faithful Coun­sellor for no less than thirty years after, whilst De Burgo (that fast Servant of his Father's against the French both in Normandy and Eng­land) [Page 3] with Bigot Earl of Norfolk, and others of great gravity and experience, did govern, and by their Counsels conduct the whole affairs of the Kingdom.

Few, and none others, were the Distempers of State, but such as are incident and concurrent in all, viz. The Nobility's desire of Rule, and the Commons of Liberty: Fulco de Brent, De Fortibus and some others, men that could onely thrive by Wars, the Ballance of whose Lives was their keenest Swords, ready at all adventures to abscind the right and peace of others; These, and such men misliked those days of Sloth (for so they termed the calmness and tranquillity of King Henry's Government) and the rather for that the Justice of quiet times urged from them to the lawful Owners, tortious Possessions and unlawfull seisins as the sury of War had un­justly given them, and finding that the King would make his Prero­gatives [Page 4] as sacred in their use as they are in their Stile, and that his Majesty would not suffer his Power of Protection to be made a Stalking-horse to the Rapines and Injustices of wicked men, making good that Maxim, Rex hoc solum non potest facere, quòd non potest in­justè Co. 11. Rep. Mag­dalen Col­ledge Case. Histor. S. Alb. agere: They fell out into the Rebellion that with it ended their Lives and Competitions, professing that the Swords which had set the Crown upon the Sovereign, when neither Majesty nor Law could, should secure those small pittances to their Masters, when Majesty and Law could not: Dangerous are too great benefits of Subjects to their Princes, when it maketh the mind capable of Merit, nothing of Duty: Ambitious men are dan­gerous in Councils, and disturb the quiet of the Commonweal, more than the passionate Winds can toss or prejudice a ship in the Ocean; No other turbulences did [Page 5] the State after feel but such as are incident in all, the Malice of Au­thority.

Good and great men may secure themselves from Guilt, but not Envy; for greatest in trust for publick affairs are still shot at by the aspiring of those who deem themselves less in employment than merit. These vapours did ever and easily vanish, so long as the Helm was guided by temperate Spirits, and the King tied his actions to the rule of good Counsell, and not to young, passionate, or single advice.

Thirty years now passed, and all the Guides of his youth dead but De Burgo, a man in whom nothing of worth was wanting but mode­ration, when length of days giving him advantage of sole Power, his ambition and age gave him desires and art to seclude others, which wrought him into the fatal envy of most, and that was increased [Page 6] in the title of Earl, and an Office the Earl of Kent. King gave him. Time by this had wrought, as in it self, so in the af­fections of the people a Revoluti­on: The Affliction of their Fathers forgotten, and the Surfeit of long Peace (perchance) having led in some abuses; Hence the Commons, to whom days present seem ever worst, commend the foregone Ages they never remembred, and con­demn the present, though they nei­ther knew the Disease thereof nor the Remedy. To these idle and per­nicious humours of the unwary and unsteady Rabble, some young and noble Spirits often adhere, who always covet Action and rarely con­sider the Consequence, who being as ignorant as the rest, first, by fullying the Wisdom and Conduct of the present and greatest Rulers (making each casual mishap their error) seem to decipher every blemish in Go­vernment, and by holding meer imaginary and fantastick forms of [Page 7] Government, flatter their own be­lief and abilities that they can mould any State to those general rules, which in particular appli­cation will prove idle and gross absurdities: Confirmed in their own worth by Somerie and Spencer, they take it a fit time to work them­selves into Action and Authority, a thing very long desired, and now (though unwilling to seem so) sue for, and covet it, but the King taught them by the new Earl

Consilia Senum, hastas Juvenum esse.

and that such wits (for so they would be stiled)

Novandis quam gerendis rebus ap­tiores.

fitter in being factious to disorder than to settle affairs, either de­layed or denied their desires, for wise Princes will ever chuse them Ministers,

[Page 8]
Par negotiis & non supra.

Creatures that are only theirs, o­therwise without Friends or Pow­er; It is not the least happiness for Princes to be served with good Subjects equal to their affairs, for those abilities that are above their employments cause negli­gence, and those that are beneath, ruin of the Agent: Amongst this unequal medly, there were of the Nobility Richard Marshal Earl Mat. Paris Hist. mi­nor. of Pembroke, Gloucester, and Here­ford, Darlings of the Multitude, some for the merits of their Fa­thers, whose memory they held sacred, as Pillars of publick Li­berty, and Opposers of incroach­ing Monarchy at Rumney Meade; and of the Gentry, Fitz-Geffery, Bardolfe, Gresley, Maunsel, and Fitz-John, Spirits of as much acrimony and arrogant Spleen as the places from whence they were elected, (Camp, Court and Countrey) could [Page 9] afford any, these designe to com­pass their ends by force, whilst the others effect their purposes by ob­scure arts and cunning contrivan­ces, too well knowing that Ars Vim superat, yet though the latter by their subtle policies could over­reach their Competitors, they could never prevail over wholesome and honest Counsels: But all minds being as much disturbed as their interests were divided, and designs frivolous and fruitless, and that so long as the King followed the Counsels and Directions of the Earl of Kent, they had small hopes of their desires and mischievous purposes, they made frequent and often meetings, and as one saith of them

Clam & nocturnis colloquiis.
Mat. Paris Hist. mi­nor.

In the end Somerie and Spencer, two that were far in opinion with the rest, whose Education qualified them in all respects for greater im­ployments [Page 10] than any of their times, they having the advantages of for­reign experience in their Travels abroad, and well understanding the individual interests of the King and his Neighbours; upon these grounds they glossed their own merits, and set upon their own deserts, the best places when the stream should turn, which one of them (Spencer) did most unwor­thily obtain, for he raised in actual Rebellion Justiciarios Angliae against his Sovereign, and advised that the best means to remove that great and good Obstacle, the Earl of Kent, out of the way of their pre­ferment, was by sifting into his actions and siding with his oppo­site, and most implacable enemy Peter Bishop of Winchester, an evil man but gracious with the King, aiming to drive out the most wor­thy by the worst of men: That be­ing their Maxim, they made no doubt they should be able to remove [Page 11] the Instrument of their intended villanies (the haughty Bishop) by dilating his particular Vices, and making them conspicuous, and him notorious both to King and People, which will be ever more possible as he is more potent, and so conclude to remove him at their pleasure, or else this must be the way, to give the King over to such Ministers as would certainly cut off the affections of his people, and consequently render the Govern­ment odious: So they doubt not (though the first stratagem miss) that this must certainly hit the mark, and light them the way to their dark and evil purposes,

Honores quos quieta Republica de­sperant, perturbata consequi se posse arbitrantur.

This Counsel being heard and approved must now be put in practice, the corrupt and ambiti­tious [Page 12] Bishop is drawn to their party by Money and an opini­on of increase of Power; men are most easily corrupted in the supreamest Fortunes, where Lusts may have the advantage of being armed with Power: Articles are in all hast forged and urged against the good and innocent Earl, as, Sale of the Crown-lands, Wast of the King's Treasure, and Lastly that (which those ambigu­ous times held Capital) giving al­lowance to any that might breed a rupture between the Sovereign and the Subject, which they char­ged to be his design (to work some machinations of his own a­gainst the Government) and to have been done by him, in wor­king the King to annihilate all Patents granted during his mino­rity, and enforcing the Subject to pay as the Record it self mentions, Non juxta singulorum facultatem, sed quicquid Justiciarius estimabat. [Page 13] But the good Earl stood upon his own legs and opposed his inno­cence singly to shield him from the mischiefs of their wicked pur­poses, and he cleared himself of all their false accusations; but they did worthily perish by their own Swords, for Arts that fit Princes, end ever in the ruin of the first in­ventors: Bad times corrupt good Counsel and make the best Mini­sters yield to the Lusts of Princes,

Irridenda est eorum socordia, qui Tacit. l. 4. presenti potentia credunt extingui posse sequentis aevi memoriam.

Therefore this King cannot pass blameless, that would so easily ba­nish all former merit of so good a Servant for that wherein him­self was chief in fault: But Prin­ces natures are more voluble and sooner cloyed than others, their Favours transitory; and as their minds are large, so they easily out-look [Page 14] their first elections, having no farther necessity in the fastness of their affections than their own satisfactions: When it is once past Noon with a Court-favourite, it is suddenly Night with him. The eminent Vertue of men, if it be Marq. Vir­gil. Mal­vezzi. not the cause of their natural, is frequently of their civil and po­litical destruction; at first they are sought to, and raised by the neces­sities of the Prince, and under co­lour of the same pretext, or cause, they meet with ruin; The Tree that was esteemed for its Shadow to shelter us from the heat of the Summer, is afterwards cut down to defend us from the cold of the Winter; the same man whom Princes advance, and embrace in the heat of their necessity, is he whom they cut down in the cold of their jealousie.

The Bishop now sits at Helm and mannageth the State as he pleases, Chron. de Litchfield. having chosen for his Instruments, [Page 15] Peter Rivalis, a man like himself; he displaceth the Natives, and ob­trudes the Britains and other Fo­reiners into Offices and Places of the largest benefit and greatest trust: by whose conduct in Affairs, the King is drawn into an evil opi­nion of his people: For nothing is more intolerable with and against the nature of the English, than to have Strangers rule over them. Of these times Wendover an Authour then living, saith, Judicia commit­tuntur injustis, Leges ex legibus, ju­stitia injuriosis.

Thus the Plot of the tumultuous Barons went clear, and had not the discreter Bishops calmed all by dutiful perswasions, informing the King of the pernicious consequen­ces that must inevitably follow this bad mans counsels and power, whose carriage before had lost his Father Normandy, his Treasure, the love of the People, and in that the Crown, and would (by teaching [Page 16] the Son passionately to reject the just Petitions and Rights of his loy­al Subjects, as of late the Earl of Pembroke Earl Marshal of England, the due of his Office) drive the whole Commonweal into distra­ction and discontent, by his bad ad­vice and corrupt manners; and doubtless the rebellious Lords had ended this Distemper as they de­signed in a Civil War, had not these and the like wholsom Counsels stopped them in their career. De­nials of Princes must be supplied with gracious usage, that though they cure not the Sore, yet they a­bate the sense of it: But it is best that all Favours flow directly from the Princes themselves, as the pro­per Fountains of principal goodness and mercy: Denials, and things of bitterness from their Ministers, are the proper Heralds of their Justice. Thus are the strangers all displa­ced and banished: B. Rivalis Extorti­ons, ransackt by many strict Com­missions [Page 17] of Inquiry, the Bishop him­self sent disgraced to his See, finds now that

Nulla quesita scelere potentia diu­turna:

And that in Princes Favours there is no subsistance betwixt a medio­crity and precipitation; so dange­rous are the ways of Majesty, and men so foolish as to quicken their approaching ruines, by their par­tial Counsels, the effects of their own indulgence to their wicked Politicks: Policy is a Sea so incon­stant and so turbulent, that there is no place to be found in it where we have not seen one or other cast away; it is a piece of Architecture so decayed, that it always threatens to tumble.

The affections of a corrupt mind, like those of a diseased body, are always pernicious: The Lords be­gin now to sow upon this late [Page 18] ground of the peoples discontent, Querelas & ambiguos de principe ser­mones; Monac. de Bur. and take the readiest way to destroy the Government, by slandering the King and his Coun­sels, which is the best Expedient for them to procure the peoples af­fection, who always love change; and those who have the greatest tyranny in projection, will be the most vehement and earnest Asser­tors of the peoples liberties and power, or popularity acquired by fraud or violence, will never be imployed in the exercise of Justice: The King whose Nature was too gentle for such insolent Spirits, was forced as Fre. saith) to seek as he Regist. de Ma. Paris. presently did the advice and coun­sels of strangers, seeing his dili­gent care and greatest merits could not procure or purchase it within his own Dominions; all bearing and behaving themselves more like Tutors and Controllers, than like Lib. de Ber­monsey. Subjects and Counsellors.

[Page 19] 'Tis the Almighty that rules the hearts of Princes, and 'tis he alone that can pry into, prosper, or di­vert their purposes: Nihil est quod Deus efficere non potest, & ullo sine labore; 'Tis he whose auspicious Providence ever works, and yet ne­ver labours, but is eternally con­cerned in the preservation of all Sublunary Beings; more especially of those whose eminence exceeds all others (as Princes do) and stands next in relation (in respect of their Office) to the same Providence that finds means both to preserve and direct them: Whilst by the former Factions, the Affairs of State seem to go retrograde; Hea­ven sends the King such a Coun­sellor as the necessity of those times required: Mountfort a French-man is now become the Subject of the Kings Favours; and the choicest Object of his delight; a Gentleman of noble blood, and ample educa­tion; whose comely features and [Page 20] exact delineaments seemed never­theless to adapt him more for a Mistress than a Counsellor.

The King seemed to be never more concerned than when this Favourite seemed to be troubled, and on this mans content, the strongest affections of his Prince did so dote, that at the first essay of the Kings Favours and grace, his Majesty (in spight of the Nobility) created him Earl of Leicester, and in no less offence of the Clergy (by violating the Rites of holy Church) gave him his vowed vailed Sister to Wife. More of art than usual, some have deemed this Act of the Ma. Par. Rog. Wend. Kings making the tye of such de­pendency, and the strength of this assurance both at his will. Mount­fort made wanton thus with the dalliance of his Master, sorgetteth his moderation; for discretion in youth seldom attends great and sud­den Fortunes: He draweth all pub­lick Affairs into his own hands; [Page 21] all favours must pass from him, all preferments by him: the King stands but as a Cypher to add the greater Number to this Figure; and his Majesty thought himself Chron. Jo. de Salgr. never more secure and glorious, than when this State-Statue was most adored; there was such a per­fect union betwixt them, that the crosses and prosperities of the one, were bewailed and accepted by the other, and the King looked upon him no more as a Subject, but as his dearest Friend and most fami­liar Companion. Great is the So­veraign's errour, and dangerous his condition, when the hope of Sub­jects must acknowledge it self be­holding to the Servant for matters of the greatest importance, and acts of the greatest grace, which ought always to be owned as the imme­diate bounty and good election of himself. The most eminent Ex­ertions of the Soveraigns Grandeur, is always conspicuous in the most [Page 22] elevated choice of great Actions; for,

Non vacat exiguis rebus adesse Jovi;

The Poets feign, that the Universe is born on the Shoulders of Atlas. So great Actions (which ought always to be the Princes own work) are the best Supporters of universal Soveraignty: Though Princes may take above others some Cabinet Friend, with whom they may participate their nearest Passions, yet 'tis their greatest pru­dence, so to moderate and tempe­rate the Affairs of their Favourite, that they corrupt not the effects of their Principalities: Mountfort is this Minion which grated the Spi­rits of the great men, and they con­clude him unworthy to deal alone in those Matters which should pass through their hands, and are im­placably incensed to see him leap over all their Heads to the greatest [Page 23] Honours and Offices; they pre­sently run along with the rising Grace of the Kings half-brethren, (though Strangers) hoping there­by to divide that power which o­therwise they saw impossible to break. Leicester confident of his Masters love, and impatient to bear either Rival in Favour, or Partner in Rule, opposeth them all, and arrays his audacity against their malice; yet he found in the ebb of his Fortunes the mischance of others; that this King could as easily transfer his Fancy, as he had unadvisedly settled his Choice. Great (we see) must be the expe­rience and cunning of that man that can Pilote himself amidst the various streams and sudden gusts of Princes Favours, since the mutabi­lity of their Affections are as cer­tain, as their Resolutions are diffi­cult to be fixed: whosoever intends to effect this, must not aim only at the Honour and Service of his Ma­ster, [Page 24] dispoyled of all other respects, transform himself into his inward inclinations, work into a necessity of emplyoment, by undergoing the Offices of greatest Secresie, either of publick Service, or Princes Plea­sures, he must tumble down Com­petitors of worth by others hands, conceal his own Grandeur in pub­lick, with a pretended humility, and what in Popularity or Go­vernment he affecteth, let it rather seem the work of others, than any appetite of his own. Thus were the Reigns of Government (by this advantage) made by the re­bellious Lords, put solely into the hands of the Kings half-brethren, Adam Guydo, and Godfrey, and Wil­liam himself as before; Ex magnâ fortuna licentiam tantam usurpans: H. Kinston So now to act his own part was warily withdrawn, when he had such eminent and worthy Relators of all his Actions about the King, as would frequently for his honour [Page 25] and advantage opportunely urge them. These Masters (as Walling­ford termed them) Tanta elati ja­ctantia quod nec superiorem sibi intel­ligunt nec parem, mellitis, & molli­tis adulationibus animum Regis pro libito voluntatis ex rationis tramite declinantes, do alone what they list, they fill up the Courts and places of Justice, and trust their Country-men under the conduct and rule of Foreiners, exact on whom and how they please, con­sume the Kings Treasure, and dis­pose the Crown-lands upon them­selves and followers, set prices on all Offences, darraign the Justice of the Law within the rule of their own breast, the usual reply of their Creatures or Servants, being to the complaints of the Kings Subjects.

Quis tibi rectum faciet, Dominus Rex vult quod Dominus meus vult?W. Bishang.

[Page 26] These Strangers seemed in their lawless carriage not to have been invited, but to have entred the State by conquest, exercising ra­ther the Severities of Conquerors; than behaving themselves as good Magistrates or Friends, knowing that such power as is acquired by fraud, must be maintained by vio­lence: The Nobility they compel not to obey but serve, and the mea­ner sort to live so as they may justly say, they had nothing, bringing in the greatest miseries that an un­limited power could inflict. Ple­nitudo potestatis est plenitudo tempe­statis: Yet least the King should hear the groans of his people (which able and honest men would tell him) they bar all possibility of access to such men, suspicion and jealousie being the best means to conceal their own defects, always aiming at the ruine of those who have more of vertue than them­selves, having the greatest cause to fear them most.

[Page 27]

Omnis facultas gubernandi quae est Grot. de jure B. & P. l. 1. c. 4. Sect. 6. in Magistratibus, summae pote­stati ita subjicitur, ut quicquid contra voluntatem summi Impe­rantis faciant, id defectum sit ea facultate, ac proinde pro actu privato habendum.

Thus happens the incapacity of Government in Princes, when it falleth to be a prey to such law­less Minions, the ground of all cor­ruption in all the members of King Henry's State. Contagions easily attaque the fairest Fortunes, and men take example generally from their Prince's Weakness and Li­centious Liberty; and Greatness frequently makes Gain a Monopo­ly, which gives way to the growth of evils, and they matter nothing more than their own private Lucre. A Famine accompanieth these Cor­ruptions, and that so violent, that the King is enforced to direct Writs to all the Shires,

[Page 28]

Ad pauperes mortuos sepeliendos faucis media deficientis, (Famine Rot. clang. 42 H. 3. proceedeth) & secutus est Gla­dius tam terribilis ut nemo in­ermis secure possit Provincias pervagari.

For all places within the Realm were left a Prey to the Fury of the lawless and irresistible multitude (Plebs aut humiliter servit aut su­perbe dominatur) who,

Per diversas partes itinerantes velut per consensum aliorum (as the Record saith)

did imply that the factious Lords suspected by the King, had given some heat to that Commotion, Se­ditious Peers being too frequently the fomenters, but ever Fuel to such popular Conflagrations. Nei­ther were the Church-men with­out their parts in this Tragick work, as, Walter Bishop of Wor­cester, [Page 29] and Robert of Lincoln (to whom Mountfort and his Facti­on percordialiter adherebant) were much engaged: These Contagions infect the Church as well as the State, and the Clergy in such de­signs are rarely backward: and the disgust of the present Government in the Church as well as in the Commonwealth, will be but one designe carried on by the united Will. Ri­shanger. resolutions in the members of both; for such turbulent and unquiet Spirits, who propose to themselves a better fortune in the new modeling, or clean extirpation of the old, and introducing some new form of Go­vernment, which always in the minds of the giddy multitude win­neth an applause both for the De­sign and the Projectors, and did at this time fitly sute the peoples humour, so much distasted at the new Courts of the Clergy, their Pomp, their Avarice, and the Pope's Extortions: Fair pretext it was to [Page 30] these Factious Bishops to use their embittered Pens and Speeches, which they did so severely against some Religious Orders, Ceremo­nies, and State of the Church, that one of them incurred the Sentence of Excommunication at Rome, and Treason at home; for he enjoyned the Earl of Leicester,

In remissionem Peccatorum ut cau­sam Mat. Paris Will. Ri­shanger. illam (meaning the re­bellion) usque ad mortem as­sumerit, asserens pacem Ecclesiae Anglorum sine Gladio materiali nunquam firmari.

Falsely grounding his opinion and practices on the saying of St. Isi­dore,

Quod non praevalet Sacerdos efficere Isidor. sent. li. 3. ca. 15. per doctrinae Sermonem, Potestas hoc imperet per disciplina terro­rem.

[Page 31] It was not the best Doctrine this man might plant to preach its firmation and establishment by a disordered Liberty, and Civil Wars, when the first Church propagated its Disci­pline and Doctrine by Fasting and Prayer: True Piety bindeth the Subject to deliver a good Sove­reign, to bear with a Bad, and to take up the burthen of Princes with a bended Knee, hoping ra­ther in time to merit Abatement than resist Authority: The Vices of bad Princes are to be born with the like patience as we endure Dearths and Tempests, or such like Deviations of Nature from her u­sual course; because though Prin­ces (as they are men) may be viti­ous, yet as such are not immor­tal; and a pious Successor may re­pair the ruins of a former Oppres­sor. Church-men ought not to lead us in the rule of Loyalty, but instruct us in the knowledge of [Page 32] our Christian and Spiritual Du­ties, in difficult points of Religi­on (where an humble ignorance is a safe and secure knowledge) we may rely on them.

To suppress these troubles, and supply the King's enormities, a Parliament was summoned much to the liking of these Lords, who as little meant to relieve the King's wants as they did desire, and en­deavour to quiet His Majesties Realms, their end at this time be­ing only to discover the Nakedness or Poverty of their Master at home, that so they may be able to dimi­nish his Credit and Glory abroad, and so the better to brave out their inclinations freely; which those licentious times did permit. Here Chron de Worcester. they began to be bare-faced, and audaciously to tell their Sovereign that he had wronged his Subjects, and injured the publique good, in that he had taken to his private choice the Chief Justice, Chan­cellor, [Page 33] and Treasurer, that should be only by the Common Council of the Realm, commending much the Bishop of Chichester for deny­ing M. Paris. R. Wendov. the delivery of the Great Seal but in Parliament where he re­ceived it. They blame him to have bestowed the best Places of trust and benefit (that were in his gift) upon Strangers, and to leave the English unrewarded. To have Jo. Wal­lingford. M. Paris. Ma. Paris. ruined the Trade of Merchants by bringing Maltolts, and Customs, and to have invaded the Liberty of the Subject by Non Obstantes in his Patents to make good Mono­polies for private Fauorites. That he hath taken from his Subjects,

Quicquid habuerunt in esculentis & poculentis. Rusticorum enim E­quos, Bigas, Vina, victualia ad Libitum caepit.

That his Judges in their Cir­cuits under colour of Justice do [Page 34] Fleece the People Causis fictitiis quoscunque poterunt diripuerunt.

And Sir Robert de Parslaw had Chron. de S. Albani. wrong from the Borders of his Forests under pretence of Incroach­ments, and Asserts great sums of Money, and therefore they wonder he should now demand Relief from his so pilled and polled Commons, alledging the saying of Tiberius,

Quod boni Pastoris est pecus ton­dere non deglubere, Sueton.

And that by these, and such like former extremities,

Et per auxiliae prius data, ita de­pauperentur, ut nihil habeant in Will. Ri­shanger. bonis.

And therefore they advise him that since his needless Expence (posteaquam Regni caepit esse dilapida­tor) was summed up by them to above 800000 lib. It were most [Page 35] just and expedient to retrench or resume from his Favourites who had degluberated the Kingdom's Treasure, divided the old Lands of the Crown, for, and amongst, themselves. Some of them they undertake to describe: Saying one is Clericus militaris, or, Literatus Chron de Litchfield. Miles, that in a short space from the possession of an Acre had grown up to the Inheritance of an Earldom. And that Maun­sell Mat. Paris Hist. mi­nor. W. Rishang. another inferior Clerk did constantly expend 4000 marks, as the Product of his yearly Reve­nue, whereas a more compendi­ous Stipend would have more apt­ly suited the dignity of Clerks bet­ter qualified than with the mean and ordinary fruits of a Writing­school.

Notwithstanding all which grie­vances, if a moderate supply would suite with the King's occasions they were content to perform Relief in obedience, and as the Ad Reges potestas om­nium per­tinet, ad singulos proprietas. desert of his [Page 36] carriage towards them should me­rit, and so (as the Record saith)

Dies datus fuit in tres septimanas Mat. Paris Regist. R. de Wa­ling. ut interim Rex excessus suos corrigeret, & magnates volun­tati ejus obtemperarent.

At which day upon his Maje­sties new grant of the Great Char­ter, admittance to his Council of some persons elected by the Com­mons, and promise to rely up­on natural Subjects of England, and not upon strangers for his Counsellors hereafter, they grant him such a Supply as his occasi­ons must shortly after oblige him again to their Devotion for ano­ther. Thus Parliaments that were ever before the most infallible me­dicine to heal up any Distempers or Malignities, are now grown worse, and almost less desirous, than the Maladies themselves, since malevolent humours and factious [Page 37] Spirits did most of all sway in them, and the well-composed Tem­pers had the least share and preva­lency in all their Consultations.

Thus the King did demonstra­tively experience the purposes of his Rebellious Subjects, and finding that the ebb of his Treasure caused his Calamities to flow the higher, he begins to play the good Hus­band, conclude all Extravagances, and close the mouth of his over­spending and over-open Purse, and resolveth himselfe, though too late, to stand alone. Such experience is always pernitious to the private and dangerous to the publick good of the State, when it never learns to doe but by undoing, and never sees Order but when Confusion shews it: Yet still, alas, such was his flexibility that he could not refrain his assent to the vast, and as it were unlimited desires and importunities of his Forreigners, tending to endless wast and de­struction, [Page 38] so that an Author living in those times saith it became a Hist. mi­nor. S. Al­bani. by word amongst the Natives, Our Inheritance is converted to Aliens, and our houses to Strangers. Ser­vants to a King excessive in Gifts, measure their demands by his boun­ty, and put them not out by rea­son but by example. Men natu­rally affect no bounty but what is meerly future, the more that a prince weakeneth himself by gi­ving, the poorer he is of Friends, for prodigality in the Sovereign seldom ends without the Spoil and rapine of the Subject, self-interested Ministers ever building their Po­wer, and conceive themselves to be as Arbitrary as their Master's Liberality to them is profuse.

The Kings Treasure is again ex­hausted, and yet he resolves, that before he will submit himself again to and bear as he had done the last Parliament; so many bravadoes and strict enquiries, and severe [Page 39] scrutinies of his factious and diso­bedient Subjects, he resolves to pass through all the shifts that ex­tremity of need with greatness of mind could lay before him. He 46 H. 3. beginneth first, with the Sale of Crown-lands, and then of Jewels, pawneth Gascoigne, and after that his Imperial Crown: And when he had neither credit to borrow, (having too often failed the repu­tation he had gotten) nor pawns of his own to procure any more, he then engaged the Jewels, and other Ornaments of Saint Edward's 49 H. 3. Shrine: And in the end, being de­stitute both of Means and Money to defray the ordinary Expences of his Court; was constrained to break up house: and (as Paris saith) with his Wife and Chil­dren: Hist. minor. Cum abatibus & prioribus sa­tis humilibus hospitia quaerunt & pran­dia. This Exigence (that again the Kings improvidence had redu­ced him to) gave great assurance [Page 40] to the rebellious Lords, they should now have the soveraign power left a prey to their ambitious designs; And (as the quickest expedition to such their machinations) they covet nothing more, than that the Kings necessities might be so many and so great, as to constrain him to call a Parliament; for at such times Monarchs are ever less than they should, Subjects more: For as the Moon is furthest off from the Sun which giveth her light, when she is at the Full; so bad Subjects are remotest from the interest of their Prince, when they are fullest of riches and ambition, and so by consequence further off from that justice and equity, which ought to give them light in all their pro­ceedings.

To hasten on the time then for this Session from whence they ex­pect so much, and to fit the means to compass their ends, there are cast abroad certain seditious ru­mours, [Page 41] that the Kings necessity must supply it self upon the estates and liberties of the people; That his Majesty having nothing of his own left; he might and meant to take from others what his own oc­casions did require; for Kings must not want as long as their Subjects have means to supply: This never-failing Touchwood took fire just to their Minds, and wrought a lit­tle moving in the State, which doubtless had gone further if the King had not timely prevented by his Proclamations, Quod quidam Claus. An. 49 H. 3. malevoli sinistra praedicantes illis falso suggesserant illum velle eos de debito gravari ac jura, & libertates regni subvertere, ut per suggestiones dolo­sas & omnino falsas eorum corda à sua dilectione & fidelitate averterent: But desireth them, hujusmodi ani­morum suorum perturbatoribus ne fi­dem adhiberent; for that he was rea­dy to defend them from the oppres­sion of the great Lords, Et omnia [Page 42] jura & libertates eorum debitas bonas & consuetas in omnibus & per omnia plenius observare. But the King seeing that he could neither right himself nor his Subjects, without means and power, and himself had of neither so much as would stop the present breach in his own wants, or his Subjects loyalty, he flieth to the Bosom of his people for relief and counsel: At Oxford they met in Parliament, where his ne­cessities met with so many unduti­ful demands, that he was forced to give up to their rebellious will his Regal power, and lay down his Prerogative to their unjust desires. Here the Commons knowing, that Cum eligere inceperunt, they were Ma. Paris. loco libertatis, required of the King to have the management of the Affairs of the publick put into the hands and under the care of Twen­ty four, whereof Twelve by their Chron de Worcest. Election (to which they look strictly) and the other twelve to [Page 43] be nominated by the King, who in all things else stood but as a Cy­pher, and in this, whether by fear or remisness, filled out his number with Mountfort, Gloucester, and Spencer: which besides the weakning of his own part, won to these late Opposites an opinion of great interest they had in his Favour: He hath now left neither election of publick Office or pri­vate Attendant: He is now con­strained to despoil his Brethren and their Friends and followers of all their Estates and Fortunes, and by a Writing under his own hand to banish them his Dominions, com­manding the Ports Pro tranfretatio­ne Claus. An. 49. H. 3. fratrum suorum to be guided and directed by the Earls of Hereford and Surry, and not to suffer them to export with themselves, either Money, Arms, or Ornament, Nisi in forma quam dicti Comites injunx­erunt: And after their departure, enjoyned the men of Bristol that [Page 44] they should not permit any Stran­gers, sive propinquos ipsius regis ap­plicare in porta; but so to behave themselves herein, that as well the King quam magnates sui merito de­beant commendare.

Thus we see how difficult a thing it is to apply ill Acquisitions to a good use, and how hard it is to fix the wavering dispositions of chance on a firm basis. Richard E­lect of the Empire, the Kings full Chron. St. Albani. Brother, and then beyond the Seas, must be wrought by his own Let­ter, and (at his free desire) to con­firm by Oath these former 11 re­strictions Claus. An. 49 H. 3. of Regal power, which when he had performed, yet would the Lords suffer neither the one nor the other to enter Dover Castle (the Key of the Kingdom) which they had furnished, (as likewise most of the other Forts of strength in the Realm) with Guardians of their own, sworn respectively to the Common State and them, ta­king [Page 45] the like assurance for the good behaviour of many towards their Cause by strict Commission upon Oath to gain opinion in shew among the Vulgar who groaned Wil. Rishan­ger. under their late Extortions, where­as their design was truly (as it af­ter appeared) by displacing the most faithful Servants of the King, to make the way easie for their own Dependants.

This change of sole Power from the nature and right of the ancient Government into the hands of a seeming Democrasie set up by po­pular Election, made the Kingdom believe (or rather imagine) that by this form of limited Policy, they had utterly suppressed the hopes or expectation of any one man, for ever aspiring to, or dreaming more upon the imaginary humours of licentious Soveraignty: But it fell out nothing so, for every man be­gan to estimate his own worth now, and to humour his brain on [Page 46] every design which might encrease his power and command.

The great men (as being first in Rot. Scotii. strength) begin now to rend their Masters Coat, and most arbitrarily to oppress their Neighbours, by seising the King and his Subjects Seigniories, upon none other pre­tence then because they lay conve­nient for, and bordered on their Seats; And enforce the Te­nants, (as the Record saith) Ad sectas indebitas & servitutes intolerabiles subditos regis compu­lerunt. Thus they unjustly ac­quired great Mannors to sup­port their greater intended Ho­nours, and by misguiding the Royal Justice, make themselves of so many Subjects (whilst they lived within the bounds of their Allegiance) so many Tyrants (as the Book of S. Albans saith) when they had renounced their Loyalty, Magnas induxerunt magnates regni Rot. Scotii. super subditos Regis servitutes & op­pressiones, [Page 47] which they bear with the greatest patience; for excess of mi­sery finding no ease but on the shoulders of Custom, made men sa­tisfied with their hardest servitude by the length of Sufferance, which found neither ease nor end, until the calm of this Kings Reign: For in all changes it is the peoples mi­series that first happen, and are last redressed; and yet the peoples de­struction is the surest perspective through which the Prince may have the nearest viewing of his own approaching ruine, the cala­mities of both being so individual­ly concomitant, that they ever ob­serve this order in their progress, (viz.) That the Soveraign brings up the Rear of his Subjects missor­tunes, and leads the Van of his own and their prosperities.

Mountfort, Gloucester, and Spen­cer, Jo. de Wal­lingford. the Heads of this rebellious de­sign, having by the late provisions drawn to the hands of their Twen­ty [Page 48] four Tribunes the sole manage­ment of the Royal Authority, yet finding this power too much dis­persed to accomplish the end of their purposes, force again the King at London to call a Parlia­ment, where they purchase and procure the power of the Twenty four to be delivered unto them­selves, and create a Triumvirate Non constituendae reipub, causa as they pretended, but that they might the better facilitate the means to effect their own private ends. One of them is made (which proved fatal to him) Dictator perpetuus, Ambition is never so high, but she thinks ever to mount that Station which seemed lately the top, is but a step to her now, and what before was great in desire seems little when it is in power.

These three elect Nine Coun­sellors, and appoint Quodtres ad mi­nus alternatim semper in Curia sint, ro appoint Governours for his Ma­jesties [Page 49] Forts and Castles, Et de aliis omnibus regni negotiis, of the chief Justice, Chancellor, and Treasu­rer, with all Officers both great and small, the choice of which they reserve to themselves, and bind the King to this hard Bargain upon such strong Security, that he is constrained to confirm it under the Great Seal; and for his stricter ob­servance thereof to bind himself by an Oath, which was in effect, to re­mit to them the tyes of their Al­legiance and bounden duty, when­soever he assumed the exercise of his Royal Dignity; insomuch that Liceat omnes de regno nostro contra Cart. Orig. sub Sigilio. nos resurgere, & ad gravamen no­strum opem & operam dare, ac si nobis in nullo tenerentur.

Hence we may see, that Riches are the firmest and most steady bot­tom whereon to build the safety as well as glory of a happy Monarchy, whose report terrifies our Enemies beyond the roaring of the greatest [Page 50] Cannons: 'Tis therefore the pru­dence of every Prince not to be la­vish of his Purse, since the basis of Government (the glory of the Prince) is quite overwhelm'd in the gulph of an empty Fortune: And it is not enough for a man in Authority to have a Power that may awe the judgment of the wise to subjection, unless he have a pomp or purse to, that may dazle the eyes of the Vulgar into veneration. This Prince, this Prodigy of For­tune whom she had affronted with the most pitiful and insolent Ex­amples of her inconstancy, finding no part of his Soveraignty left, but the naked Title (which he en­joyed neither but by the permission of the rebellious Lords) beggeth succour from Urban the Fourth a­gainst his disloyal Subjects; The Pope by his Bull cancelleth his Oath and Contract, and armed him with Excommunication against all such as returned not with speed to [Page 51] their due and old obedience. The Lords at this grow incouraged, and resolve, since promises made by men (that cannot say they are at Chro. Lei [...] field. Will. Rishander, Chron. de Brit. liberty) are light, and Oaths of so a little moment, to be conten­ted now with no gain but what they should rake out of the ashes of that Monarchy they meant to de­stroy: They make head now a­gainst their Soveraign, and the better to confront him call in to their assistance the French Forces: Thus the Commonwealth turned her Sword into her own bowels, and invited her ancient Enemy to the funerals of her liberty; So that it was a wonder she did not at this time undergo the rigorous severi­ties of an arbitrary forein Servi­tude.

And although these men were more truly sensible of their own disgrace than others miseries, yet found they no better cloak to co­ver their unjust Designs, than that [Page 52] of asserting the publick good; and Chro. Dun­stable. Will. Ri­shanger. therefore at the beginning of this unhappy War, they cried out, Li­berty! Liberty! although when they had finished it, they threw off that cloak of the Publick Good, and made that very Liberty they so much cried up, give place to their own private interest and lust.

Those that have the extreamest Tyranny in projection, will be the greatest Pretenders of the Publick good, and the most importunate and implacable Assertors of the Peoples Rights and Liberties; And it is the most compendious way of imposing slavery, to raise in the multitude too passionate and eager desires of Liberty: And when suc­cess attends the Tyrants Euterpri­zes, it is not the indulgence of Heaven to him, but the indigna­tion thereof towards the people.

At Lewis the Armies met, where the King endeavours a reconcilia­tion, but to no purpose, for perswa­sions [Page 53] are ever unprofitable, when Justice is inferiour to force; The Lords resolve to decide the differ­ence by Battel, the fatal conse­quence of which was the captivity of the King and his two eldest Sons, and so Mountfort and Gloucester trampling on the Misfortunes of their Prince mounted with the more facility into the place (though not the Throne) of Regal Power, (the effect of their long-laboured and wished for ends.) Thus all Au­thority being devolved into the hands of these two, from whose ambition the King could neither expect safety or liberty, unless the emulous competition of Grandeur (which now began to break out between these mighty Rivals) might produce it, by verifying the old Proverb, That when Thieves fall out, the honest man comes to his right; For Leicester meaning to engross from his Partner to himself, the Kings person, and to his Follow­ers, [Page 54] the best part of the Spoil, and so reap more Fruit from the Ad­vantage when divided, than he conceived was possible to be pro­duced, so long as he was coupled in fellowship with Gloucester, where, fore he dissolved all former Obli­gations of Amity and Friendship betwixt them: Thus equal Autho­rity with the same Power is always fatal in great Enterprizes, for to fit minds to so even a temper, that both should round the same circle, and never out-look the Horizon of their reciprocal Interest, is a work altogether impossible.

Mountfort having now broken all Faith with his Confederate, and renounced his Allegiance to his So­veraign, forsook the paths of in­tegrity and moderation to come to the King by those of pride and di­struct; to whom he feigneth, that he never assumed Arms for, and his ambition and desires never had any other object, but the settlement of [Page 55] the Weal-publick, and ease of his Majesties Subjects: That he did not in this carry his affection a­gainst duty, but knew well how to limit his desires to his just power, and so no less to the Kings content, if his Majesty would be ruled and guided by his Counsels, which was to summon and command all the Forts and Castles of his Com­petitor Gloucester and the rest, into the custody of himself, and to be disposed of as he should direct and advise. The Discontent and In­surrections of the Multitude is al­ways grounded on the evil actions of some great Minister, or Court-Minion: But if great men rebel, it is not so much for that they dis­like the Government, but because they would be Governours them­selves: To yield to their Demands is to resign the Soveraignty, seeing such will not be satisfied till they obtain it; which is visible in the Fortunes and behaviour of this [Page 56] man: He has now climbed the Summit of Regal Power, and sits at the Helm of State to govern and di­rect Affairs according as he plea­seth; and still thought to dissem­ble his purposes with the King, but thought of nothing less than the performance of his promises: Such was his insatiable lust after Supe­riority, that it became a matter al­most impossible for him to be ho­nest, he was so compleatly stuffed with improbity, that he had no room left for honesty; and his own base Interest so pricked him for­ward, that he trampled on the mi­series of his Prince without the least pity or remorse; and resolves (as it were) from the heart of Mo­narchy to spin out the long thread of his endless ambition, and make no other use of a King, than to lead him as the Stalking-horse to the deprivation of his Crown and Dig­nity. But his purposes are short­ly prevented in his own fatal over­throw; [Page 57] for God gave the King better Counsels: Nevertheless Ma­jesty as yet is forced to truckle un­der Inferiority, and the necessities of the time (which in Soveraign Affairs doth often force away all Formalities) compels the King to embrace his Proposals, and much against his own thoughts to look upon him as his Friend: And therefore this poor Prince who (now at the Victors discretion) seemed to have been only raised to shew the inconstancy of Fortune, and vanity of man, suited himself nevertheless with incomparable humility and wisdom to the emer­gency of his misfortunes: Neither did that humility at this time wrong the Splendors of Majesty, since there were none other means left to subdue Spirits that were so insolent, but dissimulation: His Majesty therefore in his own per­son summoned the Forces of his fastest Friends to yield to his [Page 58] greatest Enemy. Thus Leicester became the Darling of the com­mon Rout, who easily change to every new Master, and whose Fa­vours are so inconstant that they are never to be fixed; so that he could not sail long amidst the te­nebrous Designs of his Enemies, by the light and splendour of his new acquired Glory: For as the ascent of Usurped Royalty is slip­pery, so that the top is tottering, and the fall fearful;

Altius evexit quam te fortuna, ruinam
Majorem timeas—

To hold this man then com­pleatly happy at the entrance of his false felicity, was but to give the name of the Image to the Met­tall, which was not yet molten; For by this the Imprisoned Prince had broke his Fetters, and makes his first resort to Gloucester, who [Page 59] covered any, but more especially this [...]portunity of the King's pre­s [...] to revenge the injuries and affronts that Leicester had before done to his Interest and Honour, and having formed another out of the torn remains of the loyal Army, by a speedy march they arrived, unlooked for, at Evesham, where the un armed troops of the secure Rebells then lay, whom they in­stantly assail, for it was no fit sea­son to give time, when no time could assure so much as expedition did promise: De Spencer, and other Lords of that faction came towards their Prince with the best speed, for mercy, but could not break out being hurried along with the scorn of the giddy multitude. Publick Motions depend on the conduct of Fortune, private in our own car­riage; we must be wary therefore of running down steep hills with mighty bodies, they once in moti­on, Sua feruntur pondere, stops are [Page 60] not then voluntary: But Mountfort, at that time with the King and out of the Tempest, might have escaped, if his timerity and hope had not made him more resolute by misfortune, so that he could neither desert his Followers, nor relinquish his Ambition. Thus fell this Usurper by making Adversity the exercise of his Vertue, or rather desperate in the loss of his hopes, is resolved not to survive their fune­rals, but to die with his designs, accounting it more glorious to be killed in desence of his Power than than by submission tamely to re­nounce himself (his ambitious na­ture) and live within the bounds of his allegiance. Private contem­plations may be satisfied with more or less of Fortune, but aspiring thoughts we see once raised to the height of Rule are no longer in our own power, having no mean to step upon between the highest of all and the precipitation.

[Page 61] Thus the King by these happy occurrences of Providence being delivered from the severities of his former miseries, and his Royall Authority returned into its Chan­nel by the Reduction of his people to their due and wonted obedi­ence, he began to be more care­full, and to make a stricter scru­tiny into the grounds and causes of his former Misery, and why that Virtue which had both setled and upheld the Glory of the Empire so long under his Ancestors had cast her self off in his time, and conspired with her Enemies to her most ruine, as if the Genius of the State had utterly renounced her. Here he finds his Bounty had been too profuse in too liberally be­alstowing W. Rishang. Rot. Pat. 53 Hen. 3. what was his own, and his Subjects Fortunes: the griping Avarice of his civil Ministers, and lawless Liberty of his Followers: The neglect of Grace, and breach of his word, to have lost his No­bility [Page 62] at home, and necessity his Reputation abroad by making mer­chandize of Peace and War, as his last refuge; so leaving his old Allies became himself enforced to betake himself to persons ambigu­ous or injurious, and that by gi­ving over himself to sensual Secu­rity, and referring the conduct of all affairs to base, greedy, and un­worthy Ministers, whose Coun­sels were allways more subtle than substantial; so that now perfectly perceiving by these misguidances and evil Counsels he had thrown down those two main Pillars of Sovereignty and Safety, Reputation Jo. de T [...]etor. Monac. de Bury. abroad, and Obedience at home. He now therefore moderateth the first entrance of his restored Sovereign­ty with Sweetness and Clemency, he passeth an Act of Oblivion on the misprisions of most of the late Rebels, others he forgave that they might live to acknowledge his goodness, always deeming that the [Page 63] fewer he destroyed the more re­mained to adorn his Trophy. Ty­rants shed blood for pleasure and revenge, Kings for necessity, the latter delighting as little in the death of a Subject, as God himself (the universal Monarch) doth in that of a Sinner, whose Glory is always most conspicuous in the benigne attribute of his Mercy; where as his Justice is not always to be exercised, unless it be to exert the terrors of his offended Majesty in the destruction of an unrelenting and implacable Sinner. Even so this Prince, least his Ju­stice and Power might too much suffer by his acts of Grace, some few he punished by small Fines, and others by Banishment, as the two guiltless yet unpitied Sons of the Arch-Traitor: For Treason is Claus. 53 H. 3. a Crime that draws Posterity un­der the odium of the Ancestor; and what would be but a bare suspition in others, is a positive [Page 64] guilt in them; and that Crime merits the highest resentment which in its consequence is most pernicious to the Supreamest Po­wer. The Spawn of a Traitor ought as little to be nourished (in the Garden of a Commonwealth by the hand of Policy) as the di­screte Gardiner does that weed which he roots up and destroys, because in its own nature it is de­structive to the growth of those Herbs, which are of a more ex­cellent quality: And he that first preached that Doctrine to Princes of grafting their Enemies in those places due only to the merit (and only proper for the care) of their Friends, is certainly he who de­signed to suppress the growth of Friends and increase that of Ene­mies; for he took no regard to that common Orthology,

Quo semel est imbuta recens serva­bit odorem
Testa diu—

[Page 65] which the State hath often expe­rienced, and which is too visible in the actions of a great many, even in these very times. And if this impolicy be persisted in, and the King's Enemies must still be produced from the sufferings of his Friends, and this encrease be watered by the Dew of his Ma­jesties own bounty on the greatest Malignants to his Government, where will be the Friends in time of need? All ought, but those that are most willing cannot, and those that have been most obliged will not. And you may gild a Traitor with your Gold, and make him seem another thing in shew, but if you cast the Good old Cause before him, he will be like the transformed Cat in the Fable, or rather (to adapt the Simile) like the Curr that will re­turn to his Vomit. Unto the con­stant followers of his broken for­tune he giveth (but with a more wary hand) the forfeitures of his [Page 66] Enemies, having found profuse Bounty but a weak means to pro­cure affection, for it lost more in the gathering than it gained in the giving; for that liberality which is bestowed without re­spect, is taken without grace; it discredits the Receiver, detracts from the Judgment of the Giver, and blunts the appetites of such as carry their hopes by their Vir­tue and Service; Thus at last he learned that Reward and Repre­hension do ballance Government, and that it much importeth a Prince The hand be equal that holdeth the Scale. In himself he re­formed his natural errors, for Prin­ces Manners have more of life and vigor in their Example, and become a Law sooner observed and obeyed Chron. de Dunstable. than those of Letters: and al­though he did sometimes touch upon the verge of Vice, he for­bore ever after to enter the Circle. And his Court, wherein at this [Page 67] time the faults of great men did not only by approbation but imi­tation also receive encouragement and authority, he purged severely, since from thence proceeds either the regular or disorderly condition of the State. Expence of house he measured by the just rule of his proper Revenue, and was heard frequently to say, that his excess of wast had caused the greatest issue of his Subjects blood. The insolence of the Souldiers (made lawless by the late liberty of Civil Arms) he spendeth in Foreign Expeditions, having seen that the most temperate Spirits bore the ri­gour of all the former miseries, and that the other never were satisfied but in the Calamities of the Inno­cent, and knowing that if he did not find an Enemy for them abroad, they would procure one to them­selves at home. The rigours and corruptions of Civil and Judicial Anno 53. Hen. 3. Officers he examineth and redres­seth [Page 68] by strict Commission, for the sence of their Severity became the murmur of his own cruelty. The Seats of Judgment and Counsels Chron. de Trailba­ston. he filled up with men nobly de­scended, for such attract with less offence the generous Spirit, to re­spect and reverence; Their ability he measureth not by favour, nor by private information (as before) but by general voice; for every one in particular may deceive and be deceived, but no one can all, nor all deceive one. Now there­fore to discover his own Capacity, that so he might know what part to bear hereafter in all deliberate enterprises, he daily sits in Council, and in his own person manageth all affairs of the greatest weight and moment; for Counsellors be they never so wise are but accessa­ries in the guidance of the Com­monwealth; their Office must be subjection, not fellowship, in Con­sultations, and to have ability to [Page 69] vise, not authority to resolve; for as the natural Body cannot subsist unagitated by the Soul, no more can the politique part or grandeur of a Prince always support it self without sometimes giving a Sic Volo, Sic Jubeo, for unless he be po­sitive in some things to the mani­festation of his Power, he is unfit to be obeyed in any thing, to the prostration of his Prerogative; For it offendeth as well the Minister of merit as the People, to be obe­dient to one incapable of his own Greatness and unworthy of his Fortune.

This wonderful change to the Kingdom in general, lately desti­tute of all hopes or expectations to recover their ancient Rights and former Liberty, that they wished and sought for nothing but the mildest Servitude, did bring them back (without the least Commo­tion) miraculously to their Duty, and their Allegiance lovingly im­braced [Page 70] their new recovered and restored Rights and Liberties. He that will lay (we see) the foun­dation of Greatness upon popular esteem must give his Subjects ease and justice, for they measure the Bond of their obedience by the Good always they receive.

This calm serenity ever after blessed his old age, and attended his person to the period of his days. And now he ransacks the various calamities and changes of his own Reign, purposing to pre­pare his Successor with the best rules (from Principles which him­self had drawn from experience) for the settling of an happy Go­vernment, and with the best re­medies against evil times. The negligence and intemperance of youth, which experience and old age had both amended and worn out in himself, he advises his Son to avoid, as the greatest stimulati­ons to all the incommodities of [Page 71] trouble and infelicity. And the better to instruct and enable him, he made him partner both of his Experience and Authority; and farther advised him as the most approved Antidote against the Ve­nom of every passion, and as the surest Compass to steer himself by amidst all occurring anxieties and dangers; to learn in Prosperity to be silent and not transported; in Adversity, to be patient and not dejected: In neither to be discon­tented or dissatisfied: but in both to be discreetly and Philosophically affected. In fine, all the Actions of his future Reign were exact grounds of Discipline and Policy, (the best patterns for his Successor's imitation.)

And, as he was the first that settled the Law, and State, deserving to wear the stile of England's Justinian, and the Great and Glorious Title, To have deli­vered the Crown from the Subjection [Page 72] and Wardship of the Nobility, shew­ing himself in all his Actions after capable to command not the Realm only, but the whole World.

Thus frequently doth the wrongs and malice of our Enemies, be­yond the conduct of our own pru­dence, make us sometime both Wise and Fortunate. And as no Man was ever truely Miserable but by his own miscarriage, so none can ever be truely Happy without putting a Ne plus ultra to the career of his unruly Passions, and exor­bitant Lusts: The first of which is truely visible in the Fortunes and Fate of Mountfort the King's Minion, and the latter conspicuous in the bad and good Fortune of this King himself.

That man who becomes the subject of his Princes delight and favours, must have in him a cor­respondent worth as well of Wis­dom and Obedience, as of Since­rity and Truth, which makes none [Page 73] other use of this so great a blessing but to his Sovereigns Honour and his own Credit; and not to ad­vantage himself by the oppression of others. Sudorem ferro abstergere tetrum facinus; saith Pythagoras.

To curvet and dance on the top of a Pinacle is the readiest way to tumble, and it is as dangerous for a man to walk on the Summit of Honour, which is so glaciated and slippery by the over-tumid pas­sions and temptations (the con­stant companions of a Supreme Fortune) without the indispensable support of moderation.

Let the Favourite always tast the Kings bounty, but not devour it; let him enjoy his Masters Ear, but not engross it; let him par­ticipate his Love, but not enchant it. If he must be a Moat in the Eye of the Commonwealth, let him not be a Monster.

And Lastly, if he must hold the Reigns of the Government, let [Page 74] him not ride it with the Spurs of Ambition: 'Tis that alone makes a subject sally beyond the bounds of his Duty, and at one instant to be­come both a Casar and Pompey, to endure neither Equal nor Su­periour; the dismal consequences of which is too frequently an irre­trievable misery both to his Prince and Countrey. Let the Kings Actions be as pure and immacu­late as Truth and Innocence, yet if his affection either blind or transport him to become the A­sylum of his Servants insolences and evil actions, then Majesty it self becomes guilty, and must ex­pect to share both in the grievance and hatred of the poor distressed Subject.

The general Cry seeing the Stream polluted ascribe it to the Fountain head, where is the Spring and Power that may reform and cleanse it. He that will read the History of our own, or those of Fo­reign [Page 75] Nations, shall find (that by this one particular error of pro­tection) a number of memorable Examples which have produced Deposition of Kings, Ruine of Kingdoms, the effusion of Christ­an Blood, and the general distracti­ons of that part of the World, all grounded on this occasion.

Princes should put limits to their own affections, and the Power Ma­jestick is or ought to be bounded, and the obedience due to the King should reciprocally correspond with the equal Right and Justice due to the subject, by which they claim a property in his actions. If either of these prove defective by wilful Errour, the State is in im­minent danger of a following mis­chief. The Ballance therefore must be kept even betwixt the Princes Power and the Peoples Liberty, which is the firm Basis of a quiet Government.

Let the People abstain from [Page 76] Faction and Discontent (the Dams that at length bring forth Consusion and Rebellion) and no doubt the Prince will from Ty­ranny and Oppression. It is the Interest as well as Duty of every Subject to pay an entire obedience to the Government under which he lives, and that without mur­mur or grumbling; for his obedi­ence is a Condition annexed to that Security which he hath of his Life and Liberty; for no Prince is obliged to protect his Subjects any longer than they continue in their Obedience to him, since Rebellion and faction cannot be nourished, but as a Viper in the Bosom of Government. And a prospect of danger does often necessitate a Prince to become a Tyrant in his own defence; and it was a wise saying of Ptolomy King of Egypt, That good Subjects might easily of a bad make a good Prince, but he could ne­ver of bad Subjects make good.

[Page 77] The King in his Throne is like the Sun in the Firmament whose influence animates all sublunary beings. So the Authority of a Prince gives life and vigor to eve­ry particular Member of the Body politick; and he is not onely Caput but also Anima Reipublicae, and no member ought to move from his proper station, or against that Soul which is the life of its being, or presume to accede too near this resplendent Head (by intermedling with the scorching influences of the State Arcana, but leave them to their own orderly course and natural guidance) least the bright­ness thereof should dazle the Ad­venturers into Blindness and Facti­on, and the heat thereof scorch them into Rebellion and Destructi­on.

But suppose a Magistrate really Tyrannical; it is no contemptible question, Whether the evils of the Redress may not be equivolent to [Page 78] the mischiefs? I remember Livy's Nec morbum ferre possumus nec reme­dium. And Tacitus, Ferenda Regum ingenia, neque usui esse crebras muta­tiones: vitia erunt donec homines, sed neque haec continua, & meliorum interventu pensantur; and Seneca, Infaeliciter aegrotat, cui plus periculi à Medico quam Morbo. Poise the Miseries of a Civil War with the Grievances of an unjust Magistrate, and the Ballance seems to me so unequal, that if my Christianity fail, the apprehension of the inevi­table miseries by the Sword is sufficient to deterr from such a practice; for though the fury of incensed Tyranny may fall heavy upon many particulars, yet the bloody consequences of an intestine Sword are more epidemical and lasting: And Tacitus commends to Subjects rather Scutum than Gladi­um, the Shield of Patience and Toleration to be more excellent than the Sword. But if there be [Page 79] such distempers in a State, as shall necessarily require amendment, let it be left to the course of Provi­dence, and not (against the dispo­sition of Heaven) be attempted by the Sword of Violence, for I never read that Illegal, or Tumultuous, or Rebellious were fit Epithets for Reformation: And 'tis fit Chri­stians should forbear the use of such surly Physick till they have levied a Fine in the Court of Heaven, and cut off the entail of the seventh Beatitude.

It is manifest that we are fallen into the dregs of time, we live in the rust of the Iron age, and must accordingly expect to feel Ultima senescentis mundi deliria, the dotages of a decrepit World, and the ma­ny miseries that attend an hardned and dissenting people; wherefore I will conclude with the saying of the Philosopher:

Novi ego hoc Saeculum quibus mori­bus sit; Malus bonum, malum esse vult, [Page 80] ut sit sui similis; turbant, miscent mores mali; Rapax, Avarus, Invidus, sa­crum profanum, publicum privatum habebit; Hiulca gens, &c.


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