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obscurity in it, and I in some sort needed appeals ;—and, I trust, might lawfully make them (as lawfully as take an oath), where the things

'were not so apt to be made evident ‘ otherwise.’ [In such circumstances, Yea !]--I shall enumerate my witnesses as well as I can.

When I had consented to accept of the Government, there was some Solemnity to be performed. And that was accompanied by some persons of considerableness in all respects: there were the persons before mentioned toyou ;’ these accompanied me, at the time of entering upon this Government, to Westminster Hall to receive my Oath. There was an expressf consent on the part of these and other interested persons. And ‘there was also’ an implied consent of many; showing their good liking and approbation thereof. And, Gentlemen, I do not think you are altogether strangers to it in your countries. Some did not nauseate it; very many did approve it.

I had the approbation of the Ofiicers of the Army, in the three Nations of England, Scotland and Ireland. I say, of the Officers : I had that by their ‘express ’ Remonstrancesi and under signature. But there went along with that express consent of theirs, an implied consent also ‘ of a body ’ of persons who had ‘ had ’ somewhat to do in the world; who had ween instrumental, by God, to fight down the Enemies of God and of His People in the three Nations. [The Soldiery of the Commonwealth. Persons Qf “some considerableness,” these 1017!] And truly, until my hands were bound, and I ‘ was ’ limited (to myown great satisfaction, as many can bear me witness) ; while I had in my hands so great a power and arbitrariness,—~the Soldiery were a very considerable part of these Nations, especially all Government being dissolved. I say, when all Government was thus dissolved, and nothing to keep things in order but the Sword! And yet they,—-which many Histories will not parallel,— even they were desirous that things might come to a consistency; and arbitrariness be taken away; and the Government be put into ‘the hands of’ a person limited and bounded, as in the Act of Settlement, ' whom they distrusted the least, and loved not the worst. [Hear I] This was another evidence ‘ of consent, implied if not express.’

I would not forget the honorable and civil entertainment, with the approbation I found in the great City of London ;Q—which the City

‘ ‘ before expressed’ in orig.

f ‘ explicit’ and ‘implicit’ in the original; but we must say ‘ express’ and ‘ implied,’-the word ‘ implicit’ having got itself tacked to ‘ faith’ (implicit faith), and become thereby hopelessly degraded from any independeni meaning. _

t Means ‘ Public Letters of Adherence.’

§ Dinner, with all manner of gala, in the common Royal Style: 8 Feb

mary, 1653—4


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knows whether I directly or indirectly sought. And truly I do not think it folly to remember this. For it was very great and high; and very public; and ‘included’ as numerous a body of those that are known by names and titles—the several Corporations and Societies of citizens in this City,-—as hath at any time been seen in England. And not without some. appearance of satisfaction also—And I had not this witness only. I have had from the greatest County in England, and from many Cities and Boroughs and Counties, express approbations. ‘Express approbatiuns ’ not of men gathered here and there, but from the County General Assizes ;—-the Grand Jury, in the name of the Noblemen, Gentlemen, Yeomen and Inhabitants of that County, giving very great thanks to me for undertaking this heavy burden at such a time; and giving very great approbation and encouragement to me to go through with it. These are plain ; I have them to show. And by these, in some measure, it will appear “I do not bear witness to myself.”

This is not all. The Judges,-trulyI had almost forgotten it [Another little window into his Highness !],—the Judges, thinking that there had now come a dissolution to all Government, met and consulted; and did declare one to another, That they could not administer justice to the satisfaction of their consciences, until they had received Commissions from me. And they did receive Commissions from me; and by virtue of those Commissions they have acted :—and all Justices of the Peace that have acted, have acted by virtue of like Commissions. Which was a little more than an implied approbation ! And I believe all the Justice administered in the Nation hath been by this authority. Which also I lay before you; desiring you to think, Whether all those persons now mentioned must not come to you for an Act of Oblivion and General Pardon, for having acted under and testified to this Government, if it be disowned by you !—

And I have two orthree witnesses more,--equivalent to all these I have yet mentioned, if I be not mistaken, and greatly mistaken! If I

should say, All you that are here are my witnesses,-I should say no '

untruth! I know that you are the same persons here that you were in your countries*—But I will reserve this for a little; this will be the issue, ‘the general outcome and climax,’ of my Proof. [Another liltle window ,'-almost a half-soliloquy; you see the Speech getting ready in the interior of his Highness !] I say I have two or three witnesses, of still more weight than all I have counted and reckoned yet. All the people in England are my witnesses; and many in Ireland and Scotland!

' Where you had to acknowledge us before election, he means, but does not yet see good to say.


All the Sheriffs in England are my witnesses: and all that have come in upon a Process issued out by Sheri& are my witnesses. [My honorable friends, how did YOU come in 1'] Yea, the Returns of the Elections to the Clerk of the Crown,—-not a thing to be blown away by a breath, --the Returns on behalf of the Inhabitants in the Counties, Cities and Boroughs, all are my witnesses of approbation to the Condition and Place I stand in.

And I shall now make you my last witnesses! [Here Comes it, “the issue (f my Proof 1”] And shall ask you, Whether you came not hither by my Writs directed to the several Sheriffs ‘ of Counties,’ and through the Slierifis to the other Oflicers of Cities and Liberties ’2 To which ‘Writs’ the People gave obedience; having also had the Act of Government communicated to theiii,—to which end great numbers of copies ‘ thereof’ were sent down to be communicated to them. And the Government* ‘ was ’ also duly required to be distinctly read unto the People at the place of election, to avoid surprises, ‘or misleadings of them through their ignorance ;—where also they signed the Indentured' with proviso, “ That the Persons so chosen should not have power to alter the Government as now settled in one Single Person and a Parliament!” [My honorable friends—fl—And thus I have made good my second Assertion, “ That I bear not witness to myself ;” but that the good People of England, and you all are my witnesses. * ,

Yea, surely l—And ‘now ’ this being so,-—tbough I told you in my last Speech “that you were a Free Parliament," yet I thought it was understood withal that I was the Protector, and the Authority that called you! That I was'in possession of the Government by a good right from God and men ! And I believe if the learnedest men in this Nation were called to show a precedent, equally clear, of a Government so many ways approved of, they would not in all their search find it.—‘I did not in my other Speech take upon me to justify the ‘ Act of’ Government in every particular; and I told you the reason, which was plain: The Act of Government was public, and had long been published, ‘ in order’ that it might be under the most serious inspection of all that pleased to peruse it.

This is what I had to say at present for approvingi myself to God ind my conscience in my actions throughout this undertaking; and for giving cause of approving myself to every one of your consciences in the sight of God—And if the fact be so, why should we sport with it 7

' Act or Instrument of Government. 1' Writ of Return. 1 ‘ By what I have said, I have approved,’ &c., in orig. : but rhetorical charity required a change. ,


With a business so serious! May not this character, this stamp [Starr-p put upon a man by the 11105! High and His providences.] bear equal poise with any Hereditary Interest that could furnish, or hath furnished, in the Cominon Law or elsewhere, matter of dispute and trial of learning 7 In the like of which many have exercised more wit, and spilt more blood, than I hope ever to live to see or hear of again in this Nation! [Red and White Roses for example : Henry of Bolingbroke and the last ‘Protector.’]—I say, I do not know why I may not balance this Providence, in the sight of God, with any Hereditary Interest [Nor do I J] ; as a thing less subject to those cracks and flaws which that ‘ other ’ is commonly incident unto; the disputing of which has cost more blood in former times in this Nation than we have leisure to speak of now !—

Now, if this be thus, and I am deriving a title from God and men upon such accounts as these are—Although some men be froward, yet that your judgments who are Persons sent from all parts of the Nation under the notion of approving this Government—[His Highness, bursting with meaning, completes neither of these sentences; but pours himself, like an irregular torrent, through other orifices and openings.]-—F0r you to disown or not to own it: for you to act with Parliamentary Authority especially in the disowning of it; contrary to the very fundamental things, yea against the very root itself of this Establishment: to sit, and not own the Authority by which you sit,——— is that which I believe astonisheth more men than myself; and doth as dangerously disappoint and discompose the Nation as anything ‘that’ could have been invented by the greatest enemy to our peace and welfare, or ‘ that’ could well have happened. [Sorrow, anger, and reproach on his Highness’s countenance: the voice risen somewhat into ALT, and rolling with a kind of rough music in the tones of it I]

It is true, as there are some things in the Establishment which are fundamental, so there are others which are not, but are circumstantial. Of these no question but I shall easily agree to vary, to leave out, ‘ according’ as I shall be convinced by reason. But some things are Fundamentals! About which I shall deal plainly with you; These may not be parted with; but will, I trust, be delivered over to posterity, as the fruits of our blood and travail. The Government by a Single Person and a Parliament is a Fundamental ! It is the esse, it is constitutive. And as for the Person,—tl10ugh I may seem to plead for myself, yet I do not: no, nor can any reasonable man say it. If the things throughout this Speech be true, I plead for this Nation, and for all honest men therein who have borne their testimony as aforesaid, and not for myself! And if things should do otherwise than well (which I would not fear), and the Common Enemy and discontented persons take advantage of these distractions, the issue‘will be put up beiore God: let Him own it, or let Him disown it, as He pleases !—


In every Government there must be Somewhat Fundamental [Will speak now of Fundamentals.1, Somewhat like a Magna Charla, which should be standing,be unalterable. Where there is a stipulation on one side, and that fully accepted, as appears by what hath been said,—surely a return* ought to be; else what does that stipulation signify? If 1 have, upon the terms aforesaid, undertakenthis great Trust, and exercised it; and by it called you,--surely it ought" by you ’ to be owned —That Parliaments should not make themselves perpetual is a Fundamental. [Yea,' all know it : taught by the example qf the Rump !] Oi what assurance is a Law to prevent so great an evil, if it lie in the same Legislature to unlaw it again? [.Must have a single Person it check your Parliament] Is such a law like to be lasting? It will be a rope of sand ; will give it no security; for the same men may unbuild what they have built.

‘ Again,’ is not Liberty of Conscience in Religion a Fundamental? So long as there is Liberty of Conscience {or the Supreme Magistrate to exercise his conscience in erecting what Form of Church-Govern ment he is satisfied he should set up [“ HE is to decide on the Form q; Church-Government, then I!” The Modems, especially the Volunta'rg, Principle, stare.],—-why should he not give the like liberty to others ‘2 Liberty of Conscience is a natural right; and he. that Would have it, ought to give it; having ‘ himself’ liberty to settle what he likes for the, Public. [“ Where then are the limits of Dissent .1" An abstruse ques. tion, my Voluntary friends; especially with a Gospel really BELIEVED !] Indeed that hath been one of the Vanities of our Contest. Every Sect saith: “ Oh! give me liberty 1” But give it him, and to his power he will not yield it to anybody else. Where is our ingenuousness '2 ‘ Liberty of Conscience ’—truly that is a thing ought to be very reciprocal! The Magistrate hath his supremacy ; he may settle Religion, ‘ that is, Church-Government,’ according to his conscience. And ‘ as for the People,’—I may say it to you, I can say it: All the money of this Nation would not have tempted men to fight upon such an account as they have here. been engaged in, if they had not had hopes of Liberty ‘of Conscience ’ better than Episcopacy granted them, or than would have seen afl‘orded' by a Scots Presbytery,—or an English either, if it had made such steps, and been as sharp and rigid, as it threatened when first set upli- This, I say, is a Fundamental. It ought to be so. It is

' reciprocal engagement. - . . ' ' f Liberty of Conscience must not be refused to a People who have fought VUL. n. 7 ‘ '


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