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to that;' I have told you my heart and judgment; and the Lord bring forth His own issue. [His Highness produces the Engrossed Vellum.]
I think we are now to consider, not what we are in regard to our Footing and that of the Government which called this Parliament. [No: our First foolish Parliament spent all their time on that; not you, my wiser Friends. Our Footing and Government is, till there be an end put to it, – that that hath existence! [What other definition of it can be given, or need?] And so I shall say nothing to it. If it accomplisheth the end of our Fighting, and all those blessed ends and aims that we should aim at; if it do, — I would we might keep it, and remain where we are. If it do not, I would we might have a better! — Which* truly I do come out of myself to tell you, That as to the substance and body of your Instrument, I do look upon it as having things in it, :— if I may speak freely and plainly; I may, and we all may! – I say, the things that are provided for in this ‘Act of Government [Handling the Vellum] do secure the Liberties of the People of God so as they never before had them! And he must be a pitiful man who thinks the People of God ever had the like Liberty either de facto or de jure; - de jure from God, I think they have had it from the beginning of the world to this day, and have it still, but asserted by a jus humanum, I say, they never had it so as they have it now. I think you have provided for the Liberty of the People of God, and 'for the Liberty' of the Nation. And I say he sings sweetly that sings a song of reconciliation betwixt those two Interests! And it is a pitiful fancy, like wisdom and
* Ungrammatical, but unalterable. Means “On which hint."
ignorance, to think they are inconsistent. Certainly they may consist!. And, I speak my conscience of this ‘Act of' Government, I think you have made them to consist.
And therefore, I must say, in that, and in other things, you have provided well, - that you have. And because I see the Rule of the Parliament, 'your written Order here,' gives you leave to speak with me about the particulars (I judge the Parliament doth think that any Member it has is not to be neglected in offering of anything that may be of additional good), – therefore, I having a little surveyed the Instrument, I have a Paper here to offer you upon that account. [Handles a Paper of his own.] And truly I must needs say and think that, in such a case as this, where so new a work and so strange a work as this is before you, it will not be thought ill (Not at all, your Highness, only get on!) if I do with a little earnestness press you for some explanations in some things. 'A few explanations' that may help to complete the business, and leave me - (for it is only handled with me 'and for my behoof' at this time, not with you and the Parliament whom you represent): - I say, I would be glad that you might leave me, and all opposers, without excuse; as well as glad that you should settle this Nation to the uttermost advantage for it; -- in all the things I have to offer you. They are not very weighty; they may tend to the completion of the business; and therefore I shall take the freedom to read them to you.
[First, however, this Éditor, with your Highness's leave, will read to the Moderns a certain excerpt or abstract from the Engrossed Vellum itself, which he has obtained sight of, * that they also may understand what your Highness will animadvert upon. Let the Moderns pay what attention they can.
* Whitlocke, p. 648 et seqq.; Parliamentary History, xxi. 129 et seqq.
16 Article Fourth of the Petition and Advice is taken up with "describing who are to be Electors to Parliament, and Eli"gibles, — or rather who not; for it is understood that, except “the classes of persons here specified, all who had such a pri
vilege by the old Laws are still entitled to vote and to be "voted for.
“The Classes excluded from elected or being elected are “the following:
"1. All who have been concerned in the rebellion of Ire"land; or who, with or without concern in said Rebellion, are 5or shall become Papists. — All who have advised, abetted or "assisted in any War against the Parliament since the First " of January 1641-2, - unless they have since given signal 56 proofs of repentance, by bearing arms for the Parliament, 66 or in some other 'signal' manner, difficult to define. The
defining of which has occasioned great debates in Parliament. * This excludes all the English and other Malignants. "-- All who have ever been engaged in any Plot against the "Person of his Highness; or, apart from that, have been en. "gaged in any Insurrection in England or Wales since 16th "December 1653,' beginning of the Protectorate.
"2. In Scotland all who have been in arms against the “Parliament of England or the Parliament of Scotland before "the First of April 1648. This excludes the Montrose Party "and Royalists Proper of Scotland, - except such as have 6 given signal' &c. But then follows this clause in favour of “the Hamilton Engagers, and the Dunbar and Worcester “people, which attracts his Highness's animadversion in the "present Discourse: 'Nor any' (shall elect or be elected) who " since the First of April 1648 have been in arms, or otherwise -aided, abetted" &c. (which excludes all the Preston, and all "the Dunbar and Worcester people; with, however, a mast " important exception). - except such as since the First day of “March 1651-2 have lived peaceably,' - as they might all very “well do, having been all smashed to powder, six months be
"fore, at Worcester Fight, and their Chief Malignant,' whom 6 they had set up as King, being now sent on his travels, some"what in the style of a King of the Gipsies!” His Highness cannot but animadvert on this with some tartness.
With these exceptions, and one "proviso for Ireland" to be speedily noticed, all Freeholders of Counties, according to the old definition, shall vote; and all Burgesses and Citizens of Towns, - nay, I think, there is in this latter department a tendency towards the Potwalloper System; but modified of course by the established custom of each several locality in that respect.
And now let us hear his Highness in regard to Paragraph Second of Article Fourth:)
In the Fourth Article and Second Paragraph, you have something that respects the calling of Members to Parliament 'for Scotland. You would not have those excluded that were under Duke Hamilton, and made that Invasion.* Because it hath been said to you, perhaps, that if you should exclude all such, you , would have no Members from that Nation? I hope there be persons of that Nation who will be ready to give a better testimony of their country than admit that argument! And I hope it is no argument: but if it be one, then truly, to meet with the least certainty as to qualifications, you should indeed exclude men of your own country upon better defined? crimes; you should hold them off upon stricter characters than those given!'. It is thought, the qualification there which saith, of their “good testimony,” That they are to be men who have given good testimony by their quiet living — Why, truly, for divers years, they have not been willing to do ,other; they have not had an easy possibility to do otherwise, than to live
* Which met its due at Preston.
quietly! [Not since the taming they got wat Worcester, your Highness !] Though perhaps 'at bottom' many of them have been the same men: — and yet
certainly too' I know many of them are good men, worthy men. — And therefore whether it be not fit, in that place, to explain somewhat farther, and put some other character* upon what may really be regarded as “a good testimony of their being otherwise minded, of their being now of another judgment?. I confess I have not anything here to supply this defect with: but certainly if the description so stand as it now is in your Article, – those men, though they be never so indisposed, enemies and remain so, yet if they have "lived peaceably," where they could neither will nor choose 'to live otherwise, they are to be admitted. I only tell you so, being without any amendment for it; and when done, I shall leave it all with yourselves. This is for the Second Paragraph.
(For the Second Paragraph his Highness is without any amendment' of his own; offers us nothing to supply the defect:' indeed it is difficult to supply well, as that Nation stands and has stood. Besides they send but Fifty Members if all, poor creatures; it is no such vital matter! Paragraph Second remains unaltered. -- And now let the Moderns attend for an instant to Paragraph Third:
. *' . :!): “Article Fourth, Paragraph Third: A proviso as to Ireland, (+ that no English or Scotch Protestant in Ireland who before "the First of March 1649-50' (just about the time his now "Highness, then Lord General, was quitting Ireland, having " entirely demolished all chance of opposition there) “have "borne arms for the Parliament or your Highness, or other"wise given signal testimony' &c.'shall be excluded."" This also to his Highness seems worthy of animadversion...