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and next come themselves and sit in the assemblies. The nobility and chief gentry offered themselves upon that occasion: and the ministers, since they saw they were like to act in opposition to the king's orders, were glad to have so great a support. But the elders that now came to assist them beginning to take, as the ministers thought, too much on them, they grew weary of such imperious masters: so they studied to work up the inferior people to much zeal: and as they wrought any up to some measure of heat and knowledge, they brought them also into their eldership; and so got a majority of hot zealots who depended on them. One out of these was deputed to attend on the judicatories. They had synods of all the clergy, in one or more counties, who met twice a year: and a general assembly met once a year: and at parting that body named some, called the commission of the kirk, who were to sit in the intervals to prepare matters for the next assembly, and to look into all the concerns of the church, to give warning of dangers, and to inspect all proceedings of the state, as far as related to the matters of religion: by these means they became terrible to all their enemies. In their sermons, and chiefly in their prayers, all that passed in the state was canvassed: men were as good as named, and either recommended or complained of to God as they were acceptable or odious to them. This grew up in time to an insufferable degree of boldness. The way that was given to it, when the king and the bishops were their common themes, made that afterwards the humour could not be restrained: and 34 it grew so petulant, that the pulpit was a scene of news and passion. For some years this was ma
naged with great appearances of fervour by men of age and some authority: but when the younger and hotter zealots took it up, it became odious to almost all sort of people, except some sour enthusiasts, who thought all their impertinence was zeal, and an effect of inspiration; which flowed naturally from the conceit of extemporary prayers being praying by the Spirit.
The chief Henderson, a minister of Edenburgh, was by thiTparty.0 much the wisest and gravest of them all: but as all his performances that I have seen are flat and heavy, so he found it was an easier thing to raise a flame than to quench it. He studied to keep his party to him: yet he found he could not moderate the heat of some fiery spirits: so when he saw he could follow them no more, but that they had got the people out of his hands, he sunk both in body and mind, and died soon after [the papers had passed between the king and him at Newcastle.] The person next to him was Douglas, believed to be descended from the royal family, though the wrong way: [for he was, as was said, the bastard of a bastard of queen Mary of Scotland, by a child that she secretly bare to Douglas, who was half brother to the earl of Murray, the regent, and had the keeping of her in the castle of Lochlevin intrusted to him; from whence he helped to make her escape on that consideration.] There appeared an air of greatness in him, that made all that saw him inclined enough to believe he was of no ordinary descent. He was a reserved man: he had the scriptures by heart, to the exactness of a Jew; for he was as a concordance: he was too calm and too grave for the furious men, but yet he was much depended on for his prudence. I knew him in his old age; and saw plainly he was a slave to his popularity, and durst not own the free thoughts he had of some things for fear of offending the people.
I will not run out in giving the characters of the other leading preachers among them, such as Dickson, Blair, Rutherford, Baily, Cant, and the two Gillispys. They were men all of a sort: they affected great sublimities in devotion: they poured themselves out in their prayers with a loud voice, and often with many tears. They had but an ordinary proportion of learning among them; something of Hebrew, and very little Greek: books of controversy with papists, but above all with the Arminians, was the height of their study. A way of preaching by doctrine, reason, and use, was that they set up on: and some of them affected a strain of stating cases of conscience, not with relation to moral actions, but to some reflexions on their condition and temper'. That was occasioned chiefly by their conceit of praying by the Spirit, which every one could not attain to, or keep up to the same heat in at all times. The learning they recommended to their Their stn
. g~f , dies, and
young divines were some German systems, some other mecommentators on the scripture, books of controversy,thodsand practical books: they were so careful to oblige 35 them to make their round in these, that if they had no men of great learning among them, yet none were very ignorant: as if they had thought an equality in learning was necessary to keep up the parity of their government. None could be suffered to preach as expectants, (as they called them,) but
'Great nonsense. Rutherford was half fool, half mad. S.
after a trial or two in private before the ministers alone: then two or three sermons were to be preached in public, some more learnedly, some more practically: then a head in divinity was to be common placed in Latin, and the person was to maintain theses upon it: he was also to be tried in Greek and Hebrew, and in scripture chronology. The questionary trial came last, every minister asking such questions as he pleased. When any had passed through all these with approbation, which was done in a course of three or four months, he was allowed to preach when invited. And if he was presented or called to a church, he was to pass through a new set of the same trials. This made that there was a small circle of knowledge in which they were generally well instructed. True morality was little studied or esteemed by them. [They were proud and passionate, insolent and covetous.] They took much pains among their people to maintain their authority: they affected all the ways of familiarity that were like to gain on them: [even in sacred matters they got into a set of very indecent phrases.] Their great They forced all people to sign the covenant: and s*renty" the greatest part of the episcopal clergy, among whom there were two bishops, came to them, and renounced their former principles, and desired to be received into their body. At first they received all that offered themselves: but afterwards they repented of this: and the violent men among them were ever pressing the purging the kirk, as they called it, that is, the ejecting all the episcopal clergy. Then they took up the term of malignants, by which all who differed from them were distinguished: but the strictness of piety and good life, which had gained them so much reputation before the war, began to wear off; and instead of that, a fierceness of temper, and a copiousness of many long sermons, and much longer prayers, came to be the distinction of the party. This they carried even to the saying grace before and after meat sometimes to the length of a whole hour. But as every new war broke out, there was a visible abatement of even the outward shews of piety. Thus the war corrupted both sides. When the war broke out in England, the Scots had a great mind to go into it. The decayed nobility, the military men, and the ministers, were violently set on it. They saw what good quarters they had in the north of England. And they hoped the umpirage of the war would fall into their hands. The division appearing so near an equality in England, they reckoned they would turn the scales, and so be 36 courted of both sides: and they did not doubt to draw great advantages from it, both for the nation in general, and themselves in particular. Duke Hamilton was trusted by the king with the management of his affairs in that kingdom, and had powers to offer, but so secretly, that if discovered it could not be proved, for fear of disgusting the English, that if they would engage in the king's side he conditions would consent to the uniting Northumberland, Cum- the Scots, berland, and Westmerland, to Scotland; and that Newcastle should be the seat of the government; that the prince of Wales should hold his court always among them; that every third year the king should go among them; and every office in the king's household should in the third turn be given to a Scotchman. This I found not among duke Hamilton's papers: but the earl of Lauderdale assured