« PreviousContinue »
ether Popish State we can speak of, save this only, but will break their promise or keep it as they please upon these grounds,—being under the lash of the Pope, to be by him determined,'and made to decide.'
In the time when Philip Second was married to Queen Mary, and since that time, through Spanish power and instigation, Twenty-thousand Protestants were murdered in Ireland. We thought, being denied jus! things,—we thought it our duty to get that by the sword which was not to be had otherwise! And this hath been the spirit of Englishmen; and if so, certainly it is, and ougfifc to be, the spirit of men that have higher spirits! [ Yes, your Highness : " Men that are Englishmen and more,— Believers-in God's Gospel, namely!"—Very clumsily said; but not at all clumsily meant, and the very helplessness of the expression adding something of English and Oliverian character to it.]—With that State you are engaged. And it is a great and powerful State:—though I may say also, that with all other Christian States you are at peace. All these 'your other' engagements were upon you before this Government was undertaken: War with France, Denmark,—nay, upon the matter, War, 'or as good as War,' with Spain ' itself.' I could instance how it was said ' in the Long Parliament time,' " We will have a war in the Indies, though we fight them not at home." I say, we are at peace with all other Nations, and have only a war with Spain. I shall say somewhat 'farther' to you, which will let you see our clearness 'as' to that, by and by.
Having thus ' said, we are' engaged with Spain,—' that is the root of the matter;' that is the party that brings all your enemies before you. [Coming now to the Home Malignants.] It doth: for so it is now that Spain hath espoused that Interest which you have all along hitherto been conflicting with,—Charles Stuart's Interest. An<ft would but meet the gentleman upon a fair discourse who is willing that that Person should come back again!—but I dare not believe any in this room is [Heavens, no; not one of us .'] 'And I say it doth not detract at all from your Cause, nor from your ability to make defence of it, That God by His providence hath so disposed that the King of Spain should espouse that Person. And I say ' farther' [His Highness's spirit gets somewhat tumultuous here, and blazes up with several ideas at once,—producing results of " some inextricableness," as he himself might phrase it], No man but might be very well satisfied that it is not for aversion to that Person [N.4 for his sake that we have gone to war with Spain :—the Cavaliers talk loudly so, and it is not so]—'. And the " choosing out" (as was said to-day)* "a Captain to lead us back into Egypt," 'what honest man has not an aversion to that ?'—if there be such a place? I mean metaphorically and alle
* In Owen's Sermon
gorically such a place; 'if there be,' that is to say, A returning on the part of some' to all those things we have been fighting against, and a destroying of all that good (as we had some hints to-day) which we have attained unto—?—I am sure my Speech 'and defence of the Spanish war ' will signify very little, if such grounds [Grounds indicated, in this composite "blait of ideas," which is luminous enough, your Highness; but too simultaneous for being very distinct to strangers.'] go not for good! Nay I will say this to you, Not a man in England that is disposed to comply with Papists and Cavaliers, but to him my Speech here is the greatest parable, the absurdest discourse! And in a word, we could wish they were all where Charles Stuart is, all who declare [" By their cavilling at Spanish Wars and so on.-" his Highness looks animated.'] that they are of that spirit. I do, with all my heart;—and I would help them with a boat to carry them over, who are of that mind! Yea, and if yon shall think it a duty to drive them over by arms, I will help in that also!
You are engaged with such an Enemy; a foreign enemy, who hath such allies among ourselves :—this last said hath a little vehemency in it [His Highness repents him of blazing up into unseemly heal] : but it is well worth your consideration.
Though I seem to be, all this while, upon the justice of the business, yet my desire is to let you see the dangers ' and grand crisis ' this Nation stands in ' thereby.' All the honest interests; yea, all interests of the Protestants, in Germany, Denmark, Helvetia and the Cantons, and all the interests in Christendom, are the same as yours. If you succeed, if you succeed well and act well, and be convinced what is God's Interest, and prosecute it, you will find that you act for a very great many who are God's own. Therefore I say that your danger is from the common Enemy abroad; who is the head of the Papal Interest, the head of the Antichristian Interest,—who is so described in Scripture, so forespoken of, and so fully, under that characteral name of 'Antichrist' given him by the Apostle in the Epistle to the Thessalonians, and likewise so expressed in the Revelations; which are sure and plain things! Except you will deny the truth of the Scriptures, you must needs see that that State is so described in Scripture to be Papal and Antichristian. [ Who would not go to war with it.'] I say, with this Enemy, and upon this account, you have the quarrel,—with the Spaniard.
And truly he hath an Interest in your bowels ;* he hath so. The Papists in England,—they have been accounted, ever since I was born, Spaniolised. There is not a man among us can hold up his face against
* Old phrase for ' the interior of your own country.' 'hat. [The justifying of the Spanish War is a great point with his Highness .'] They never regarded France; they never regarded any other Papist State where a 'hostile' Interest was, 'but Spain only.' Spain was their patron. Their patron all along, in England, in Ireland and Scot.and : no man can doubt of it. Therefore I must needs say, this 'Spanish' Interest is also, in regard to your home-affairs, a great source of your danger. It is, and it evidently is; and will be more so —upon that account that I told you of: He hath espoused Charles Stuart! With whom he is" fully in agreement; for whom he hath raised Seven or Eight Thousand men, and has them now quartered at Bruges; to which number Don John of Austria has promised that, so soon as the campaign is ended, which it is conceived will be in about five or six weeks, he shall have Four or Five Thousand added. And the Duke of Newburgh who is a Popish Prince, hath promised good assistance according to his power: and other Popish States the like. In this condition you are with that State 'of Spain;' and in this condition through unavoidable necessity; because your Enemy was naturally an enemy, and is providentially too become so. [Always, by the law of his being, as Antichristian to Christian, a Virtual enemy; and now Providence, with be nejicent wisdom, has developed him into an Actual one.—" That was his Highness'''s fundamental reason for rushing at him in the West Indies? Because he was Antichrist ?" ask some moderns.— Why yes, it might help, my red-tape Friends! I know well, if I could fall in with Antichrist anywhere, with Supreme Quack and Damnability anyivhere, I should be right happy to have a stroke at him if there seemed any chance !]
And now farther,—as there is a complication of these Interests abroad, so there is a complication of them here. Can we think that Papists and Cavaliers shake not hands in England? It is unworthy, Unchristian, Un-English-like,* : say you.' Yes; tout it doth serve to let you see, and for that end I tell it you that you may see, your danger, and the source thereof. Nay it is not only thus, in this condition of hostility, that we stand towards Spain: and towards all the Interest which would make void and frustrate everything that has been doing for you: namely, towards the Popish Interest, Papists and Cavaliers;—but it is also' [His Highness finds this sentence will not do, and so tries ii another way]—That is to say, your danger is so great, if you will be sensible of it, by.reason of Persons who pretend other things! [Coming now to the great Miscellany of Anabaptists, Republicans, Levellers; your Aliens, Sexbys, Overtons.] 'Pretend, I say;' yea who, though perhaps ihey do not all suit in their hearts with the said ' Popish' Interest
To combine with Papists, even for Royalists to do Bo.
[Sentence left ruinous: sense gradually becomes visible]—Yet every man knows, and must know, that discontented spirits are among us somewhere! They must expect backing and support somewhere. They must end in the Interest of the Cavalier at the long-run. That must be their support!—I could have reckoned this in another ' head' [Halj soliloquising, his Highness ; giving us a glimpse into the strange seething, simmering inner man of him.]—But I give you an account of things as they arise to me. Because I desire to clear them to you! Not discoursively, in the oratoric way; but to let you see the matter of fact, —to let you see how the state of your affairs stands. [ Well, your Highness; that certainly is the grand object of speaking to us. To show Me what Thou seest, what is in Thee: why else should one human being dare to wag his tongue to another 7 It is frightful otherwise. One almost loves this incondite half-articulation of his Highness, in comparison.]
Certain it is, there was, not long since, an endeavor to make an Insurrection in England. [Penruddock at Salisbury;—we heard of Wagstaff and him!] It was going on for some time before it broke out. It was so before the last Parliament sat. 'Nay,' it was so not only from the time of the undertaking of this Government; but the spirit and principle of it did work in the Long-Parliament' time.' From that time to this hath there been nothing but enterprising and designing against 3'ou. And this is no strange or new thing to tell you: Because it is true and certain that the Papists, the Priests and Jesuits have a great influence upon the Cavalier Party; they and the Cavaliers prevail upon the discontented spirits of the Nation,—who are not all so apt to see where the dangers lie, nor to whit the management of affairs tends. Those 'Papists and Cavaliers' do foment all things that tend to disservice; to propagate discontentments upon the minds of men. And if we would instance, in particulars, those that have manifested this,— we could tell you how Priests and Jesuits have insinuated themselves into men's society; pretending the same things that they pretended ;— whose ends,' these Jesuits' ends,' have, out of doubt, been what I have told you. [Dark spectres of Jesuits; knitting up Charles Stuart, the Spaniard, and all manner of Levellers and discontented Persons, into one Antichristian mass, to overwhelm us therewith !]
We had that Insurrection. It was intended first to the assassination of my person;—which I would not remember as anything at all considerable, to myself or to you [ Very well, your Highness!]: for they would have had to cut throats beyond calculation before they could have been able to effect their design. But you know it very well, 'this of the assassination;'—it is no fable. Persons were arraigned for it before the Parliament sat; and tried, and upon proof condemned [Gerard ana Vowel; we remember them!]—for their designs to cut the throat of my. self, and three or four more; whom they had singled out as being, t. little beyond ordinary, industrious to preserve the peace of the Nation. And did think to make a very good issue 'in that way,' to the accomplishment of their designs! I say, this was made good upon the Trial Before the Parliament sat, all the time the Parliament sat, they wer« about it. We did hint these things to the Parliament people by several persons, who acquainted them therewith. But what fame we lay under I know not! [ Suspicions of us in that Parliament.'] It was conceived, it seems, we had things* which rather intended to persuade agreement and consent, and bring money out of the people's purses, or I know not what:—in short nothing was believed [ Very beautifully rebutted, your Highness; without even anger at it; as the Lion walks quietly on through cobwebs. We had "things" which rather intended to, <Jc., Sec. What most articulate rhetoric could match this half-articulate,—articulate enough for the occasion.'] ; though there was a series of things distinctly and plainly communicated to many Members.
The Parliament rose about the middle of January. By the 12th of March after, the people were in arms. But "they were a company of mean fellows,"—alas !—" not a lord, nor a gentleman, nor a man of fortune, nor a this nor that, among them: but it was a poor headstrong people, a company of rash fellows who were at the undertaking of this," —and that was all! And by such things [His Highness's face indicates that he means " no-things," " babblements"] have men 'once well-affected' lost their consciences and honors, complying, 'coming to agreement with Malignants,' upon such notions as these !—Give me leave to tell you, We know it; we are able to prove. And I refer you to that Declarationf which was for guarding against Cavaliers (as I did before to that other ' Declaration' which set down the grounds of our war with Spain), Whether these things were true or no? If men will net believe,—we are satisfied, we do our duty. [A suspicious people, your Highness: nay not suspicious, so much as incredulous, obstinate, dreadfully thick of skin .and sense,—and unused to such phenomena as your Highness!] If we let you know things and the ground of them, it is satisfaction enough to us; But to see how men can reason themselves out of their honors and consciences in their compliance with those sort of people —! —Which, truly I must needs say, some men had compliance with, who I thought never would for all the world: I must tel you so.—
These men rise in March. And that it was a general Design, I think
* Means ' we made statements;' very Oliverian expression, t Can be re^d in Parliamentary History, xx., 434 et seq