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for us and the generations to come. And if there be an absoluteness in the Imposer [As you seem to argue], without fitting allowances and exceptions from the rule [“ Fitting: that is a wide word !],—we shall have the People driven into wildernesses. As they were, when those poor and afflicted people, who forsook their estates and inheritances here, where they lived plentifully and comfortably, were necessitated, for enjoyment of their Liberty, to go into a waste howling wilderness in New England ;-where they have, for Liberty’s sake, stript themselves 'of all their comfort; embracing rather loss of friends and want than to be so ensnared and in bondage. [Yea I] , Another ‘ Fundamental’ which I had forgotten is the Militia. That is judged a Fundamental if anything be so. That it should be well and equally placed is very necessary. For, put the absolute power of the Militia into ‘ the hands of’ one ‘ Person,’—without a check, what doth it serve '! ‘ On the other hand,’ I pray you, what check is there upon your Perpetual Parliaments, if the Government be wholly stript of this of the Militia“! ‘ This as we now have it‘ is* equally placed, and men’s desires were to have it so ;—namely in one Person, and in one Parliament ‘along with him’ while the Parliament sits. What signified a provision against perpetuating of Parliaments, if this power of the Militia be solely in them? Think, Whether, without some check, the Parlia
ment have it not in their power to alter the Frame of Government alto- .
gether—-into Aristocracy, Democracy, into anything, if this ‘of the Militia’ be fully in them! Yea, into all confusion; and that without remedy! If this one thing be placed in one ‘ party,’ that one, be it Parliament, be it Supreme Governor, hath power to make what he pleases of all the rest. [" Hum-m-qn !” from the old Parliament.]—Therefore if you would have a balance at all ; if you agree that some Fundamentals must stand, as worthy to be delivered over to Posterity,—truly Ithink it is not unreasonably urged that ‘ this power of’ the Militia should be disposed as we have it in the Act of Government ;—should be placed so equally that no one party neither in Parliament nor out of Parliament have the power of ordering it. ‘ Well ;’—the Council are the Trustees of the Commonwealth, in all intervals of Parliamentj and have as absolute a negative upon the Supreme Oflicer in the said intervals, as the Parliament hath while it is sitting. [ So that we are safe—or safish, your Highness? No one party has power of the Militia at any time] The power of the Militia cannot be made use of ; not a mancan
and conquered ‘ upon such an account’ as ours was 1 For more of Oliver’s notions concerning the Magistrate’s power in Church-matters, see his Let' ter to the scotch Clergy, antea, vol. i.,482_-486.
' ‘ It is’ in orig,
be raised, nor a penny charged upon the People, nothing can be done, without consent of Parliament; and in the intervals of Parliament, Without consent of the Council. Give me leave to say, There is very little power, none but What is coordinate, ‘placed’ in the Supreme Oificer;—and yet enough in him in that particular. He is bound in strictness by the Parliament, and out of Parliament by the Council, who do as absolutely bind him as the Parliament while sitting doth.—
As for that of Money—I told you some things were Circumstantials [Comes to the Circumstantials.] ;—as, for example, this is: That we should have 200,0001. to defray Civil Ofiices,—to pay the Judges and other Oflicers; to defray the charges of the Council in sending embassies, in keeping intelligence, and doing what is necessary; and to support the Governor in Chief :* All this is, by the Instrument, supposed and intended. But-it is not of the esse so much ; nor ‘is it’ limited ‘ so strictly’ as ‘ even’ the number of soldiers is,—20,000 Foot and 10,000 Horse. [Guard even afar qfl’ against any sinking below the minimum in that !] Yet if the spirits of men were composed, 5,000 Horse and 10,000 Foot might serve. These things are ‘ Circumstantial,’ are between the Chief Officer and the Parliament, to be moderated, ‘ regulated,’ as occasion shall ofi'er. .
Of this sort there are many circumstantial things, which are not like the laws of the Medes and Persians. But the things which shall be necessary to deliver over to Posterity, these should be unalterable. Else every succeeding Parliament will be disputing to alter the Government; and we shall be as often brought into confusioni' as we have Parliaments, and so make our remedy our disease. The Lord’s Providence, evil ‘ efi‘ects’ appearing, and good appearing, and better judgment ‘in ourselves,’ will give occasion for ordering of things to the best interest of the People. Those things, ‘Circumstantial things,’ are the matter of consideration between you and me. ‘
I have indeed almost tired'myself. What I have farther to say is this [Does not yet say it]-I would it had not been needful for me to call you hither to expostulate these things with you, and in such a manner as this ! But Necessity hath no law. Feigned necessities, imaginary necessities,—‘ certainly these’ are the greatest cozenage that men can put upon the Providence of God, and make pretences to break known "ules by. ‘ Yes ;‘ but it is as legal, ‘ contrary to God’s free Grace,’ as carnal, and as stupid [A tone (9‘ anger], to think.that there are no Necessities which are manifest ‘ and real,’ because necessities may be abused
or feigned ! And truly that were my case,* if I should so think ‘here; and I hope none of you so think. I have to say [Says it now]: The wilful throwing away of this Government, such as it is, so owned» by God, so approved by men, so witnessed to (iii the Fundamentals of it) as was mentioned above, ‘ were a thing which,’—-and in reference ‘ not to my good, but’ to the good of these Nations and of Posterity,-I can sooner be willing to be rolled into my grave and buried with infamy, than I can give my consent unto! [Never !—Do you catch the tone of that voice, reverberating, like thunder from the roof of the Painted Chamber, over the heads of Bradshaw, Haselrig, Scott and Company; the aspect of Ihat face, with its lion-mouth, and moule eyes, kindled now and radiant all of it, with sorrow, with rebuke, and wrathful defiance !—Bradshaw and Company look on it unblanehed ; but will be careful not to provoke such a one. There lie penalties in him 1]
You have been called hither to save a Nation,-—Nations. You had the best People, indeed, of the Christian world put into your trust, when you came hither. You had the afl'airs of these Nations delivered over to you in peace and quiet; you were, and we all are, put into an undisturbed possession, nobody making title to us. Through the blessing of God, our enemies were hopeless and scattered. We had peace at home; peace with almost all our Neighbors round about,-apt ‘otherwise’ to take advantages where God did administer them. ‘ These things we had few days ago when you came hither. And now 7’-To have our peace and interest, whereof those were our hopes the other day, thus shaken, and put under such a confusion ; and ourselves [Chiefly “ 1”] rendered hereby almost the scorn and contempt of those strangers [Dutch Ambassadors and the like] who are amongst us to negotiate their masters’ afiairs! To give them opportunity to see our nakedness as they do: “ A people that have been unhinged this twelve-years day,-|' and are unhinged still,”-—as if scattering, division, and confusion came upon us like things we desired: ‘these,’ which are the greatest plagues that God ordinarily lays upon Nations for sin !
I would be loath to say these are matters of our desired; But if not, then why not matters of our care,—as wisely as by our utmost endeavors we might, to avoid them! Nay if, by such actings as these ‘ now’ are, these poor Nations shall be thrown into heaps and confusion, through blood, and ruin, and troubleQ—And upon the saddest account
~ ' To be legal, and carnal and stupid. 1' An old phrase; ‘ day’ emphatic I Politely oblique for ‘ your desire.’ § ‘ what shall we then say ?’ his Highness means, but does not complete the sentence,—as is sometimes his habit.
that ever was, if breaking ‘and confusion’ should come upon us ;--all because we would not settle when we could, when God put it into our hands! Your afi'airs now almost settled everywhere: and to have all recoil upon us ;_ and ourselves ‘to be’ shaken irf our afi'ections, loosened from all known and public interests :—as I said before, who shall answer for these things to God? i
Who can answer for these things to God, or to men? ‘ To men ’— to the People who sent you hither; who looked for refreshment from you ; who looked for nothing but peace and quietness, and rest and settlement? When we come to give an account to them, we [shall have it to say, “ Oh, we quarrelled for the Liberty of England; we contested; and ‘ went to confusion,’ for that !”-‘ Now,’ Wherein, I pray you, for the “ Liberty of England ‘2” I appeal to the Lord, that the desires and endeavors we have had-- -Nay the things will speak for themselves. The “Liberty of England,” the Liberty of the People; the avoiding of tyrannous impositions either upon men as men, or Christians as Christians ;--is made so safe by this Act of Settlement, that it- will speak for itself. And when it. shall appear to the world What ‘ really ’ hath been said and done by all of us, and what our real transactions were—For God can discover; no Privilege [Whal.' Not even Privilege of Parliament .1] will hinder the Lord from discovering ! No Privilege, or condi» tion of man can hide from the Lord ; He can and will make all manifest, if He see it for His glory !*_And when these ‘things, as I say,’ shall be manifested: and the People will come and ask, “Gentlemen, what condition is this we are in ? We hoped for light; and behold darkness, obscure darkness! We hoped for rest after ten-years Civil War, but are plunged into deep confusion again !3’_Ay ; we know these consequences will come upon us,- if God Almighty shall not find out some way to prevent them. ,_ my.
I had a thought within myself, That it would not have been dishonest nor dishonorable, nor against true Liberty, no not ‘ the Liberty ’ of Parliaments, ‘if,’ when a. Parliament was so chosen ‘ as you have been,’ in pursuance of this Instrument of Government, and in conformity to it, and with such an approbation and consent to it,—some Owning of your Call and 0f the Authority which brought You hither, had been required before your entrance into the House. [Deep silence in the audience] This was declined, and hath not been done, because I am persuaded scarce any man could doubt you came with contrary minds. And I have reason to believe the people that sent you least of all doubted thereof. And therefore I must
‘ ‘ Privilege’ of Parliament, in those days, strenuously forbids reporting; but it will not serve in the case referred to !
deal plainly with you: \Vhat I forbore upon a just confidence at first, you necessitate me unto now! [Paleness or. some faces]. Seeing the Authority which called you is so little valued, and so much slighted,— till some such Assurance be given and made known, that the Fundamental Interest shall be settled and approved according to the proviso in the Writ of’ Return, and such a consent testified as will make it appear that the same is accepted, I nave CAUSED 4 nor TO BE PUT TO YOUR ENTRANCE mm THE PARLLAMENT House. [You understand thal, my honorable friends 1'] \
I am sorry, I am sorry, and I could be sorry to the death, that there is cause for this ! But there is cause : and if things be not satisfied which are reasonably demanded, I, for my part, will do that which becomes me, seeking my counsel from God—There is therefore Somewhat [A bit of written Parchmen1!] to be offered to you; which, I hope, will answer, being understood with the qualifications I have told you,—‘ namely, of’ reforming as to Circumstantials, and agreeing in the Substance and Fundamentals, ‘that is to say,’ in the Form of Government now settled, which is expressly stipulated in your Indentures “not to be altered.” The making of your minds known in that by giving your assent and subscription to it, is the means that will let you in, to act those things as a Parliament which are for the good'of the People. And this thing [The Parchment J], ‘ when once it is’ shown to you and signed as aforesaid, doth determine the controversy; and may give a happy progress and issue to this Parliament. [Honorable gentlemen look in one anotlwr’sfaces,—find general blank]. '
The place where you may come thus and sign, as many as God shall make free thereunto, is in the Lobby without the Parliament Door. [My honorable friends, you know the way, don’t you 11——
The ‘Instrument of’ Government doth declare that you have a legislative power without a_ negative from me. As the Instrument doth express it, you may make any Laws; and it" I give not my consent, within twenty days, to the passing of your Laws, they are ipso facto Laws, whether I consent or no,—if not contrary to the ‘ Frame of’ Government. You have an absolute Legislative Power in all things that can possibly concern the good and interest of the public; and I think you may make these Nations happy by this Settlement. And I, for my part, shall be willing to be bound more than-I am, in anything concerning which I can become convinced that it may be for the good of the People, or tend to the preservation of the Cause and Interest so long contended for.*
' Old Pamphlet, brother to the foregoing; reprinted in Parliamentary History, xx., 349-69.