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CHAP. lution of the commons; and they thought it better Lvh. policy, by an unlimited compliance, to ward off 1644. tnat ruin which they saw approaching.* The ordinance, therefore, having passed both houses, Essex, Warwic, Manchester, Denbigh, Waller, Brereton, and many others, resigned their commands, and received the thanks of parliament for their good services. A pension of ten thousand pounds a year / was settled on Essex.

J645. It was agreed to recruit the army to 22,000 men;and sir Thomas Fairfax was appointed general.1 It is remarkable that his commission did not run, like that of Essex, in the name of the king and parliament, but in that of the parliament alone: And the article concerning the safety of the king's person was omitted. So much had animosities increased between the parties." Cromwel, being a member of the lower house, should have been discarded with the others; but this impartiality would have disappointed all the views of those who had introduced the self-denying ordinance. He was saved by a subtilty, and by that political craft, in which he was so eminent. At the time when the other officers resigned their commissions, care was taken that he should be sent with a body of horse, to relieve Taunton, besieged by the royalists. His absence being remarked, orders were dispatched for his immediate attendance in parliament; and the new general was directed to employ some other officer in that service. A ready compliance was feigned; and the very day was named, on which, it was averred, he would take his place in the house. But Fairfax, having appointed a rendezvous of the army, wrote to the parliament, and desired leave to retain, for some days, lieutenant-general Cromwel, whose advice, he said, would be useful in supplying

'Rush. vol. vii. p. 8. 15. 1 Whiilocke, p. 118. Rush. vol. vii. p. 7. 'Whitjocke, p. 133.

rng the place of those officers who had resigned. Chap. Shortly after, he begged, with much earnestness, that they would allow Cromwel to serve that campaign.w And thus the independents, though the minority, prevailed by art and cunning over the presbyterians, and bestowed the whole military authority, in appearance, upon Fairfax; in reality, upon Cromwel.

Fairfax was a person equally eminent for cou- Fairfax, rage and for humanity; and though strongly infected with prejudices, or principles derived from religious and party zeal, he seems never, in the course of his public conduct, to have been diverted, by private interest or ambition, from adhering strictly to these principles. Sincere in his professions; disinterested in his views; open in his conduct; he had formed one of the most shining characters of the age; had not the extreme narrowness of his genius, in every thing but in war, and his embarrassed and confused elocution on every occasion, but when he gave orders, diminished the lustre of his merit, and rendered the part which he acted, even when vested with the supreme command, but secondary and subordinate.

Cromwel, by whose sagacity and insinuation CromweL Fairfax was entirely governed, is one of the most eminent and most singular personages that occurs in history: The strokes of his character are as open and strongly marked, as the schemes of his conduct were, during the time, dark and impenetrable. His extensive capacity enabled him to form the most enlarged projects: His enterprising genius was not dismayed with the boldest and most dangerous. Carried by his natural temper to magnanimity, to grandeur, and to an imperious and domineering policy; he yet knew, when necessary, to employ the most profound dissimulation, the most oblique .{ and

* Clarendon, vol. v. p. 629, 690. Whitlocke, p. 141.

c H A p. and refined artifice, the semblance of the greatest y^/^ moderation and simplicity. A friend to justice? i6u. though his public conduct was one continued violation of it; devoted to religion, though he perpetually employed it as the instrument of his ambition; he was engaged in crimes from the prospect of sovereign power, a temptation which is, in general, irresistible to human nature. And by using well that authority which he had attained by fraud and violence, he has lessened, if not overpowered, our detestation of his enormities, by our admiration of his success and of his genius. Twatyof During this important transaction of the selfuxbndge. (Jenying ordinance, the negotiations for peace were likewise carried on, though with small hopes of success. The king having sent two messages, one from Evesham,1 another from Tavistocke,' desiring a treaty, the parliament dispatched commissioners to Oxford, with proposals as high as if they had obtained a complete victory.* The advantages gained during the campaign, and the great distresses of the royalists, had much elevated their hopes; and they were resolved to repose no trust in men inflamed with the highest animosity against them, and who, were they possessed of power, were fully authorised by law to punish all their opponents as rebels and traitors.

The king, when he considered the proposals and the disposition of the parliament, could not expect any accommodation, and had no prospect but of war, or of total submission and subjection: Yet, in order to satisfy his own party, who were impatient for peace, he agreed to send the duke of Richmond, and earl of Southampton, with an answer to the proposals of the parliament, and at the same time to desire a treaty upon their mutual demands and pretensions." It now became necessary for

him

• 4th of July 1644. T Sth of Sept. 1644. « Dugdale, p. 737. Rush. vol. vi. p. 850. * Whillocke, p. 110.

him to retract his former declaration, that the two Chap. houses at Westminster were not a free parliament; v^^L/ and accordingly he was induced, though with great 1644. reluctance, to give them, in his answer, the appellation of the parliament of England.b But it appeared afterwards, by a letter which he wrote to the queen, and of which a copy was taken at Naseby, that he secretly entered an explanatory protest in his council book ; and he pretended that, though he had called them the parliament, he had not thereby acknowledged them for such.0 This subtlety, which has been frequently objected to Charles, is the most noted of those very few instances, from which the enemies of this prince have endeavoured to load him with the imputation of insincerity; and have inferred, that the parliament could repose no confidence in his professions and declarations, not even in his laws and statutes. There is, however, it must be confessed, a difference universally avowed between simply giving to men the appellation which they assume, and the formal acknowledgment of their title to it; nor is any thing more common and familiar in all public transactions.

The time and place of treaty being settled, six-30thJan teen commissioners from the king met at Uxbridge, with twelve authorised by the parliament, attended by the Scottish commissioners. It was agreed, that the Scottish and parliamentary commissioners should give in their demands, with regard to three important

b Whitlocke, p. 111. Dugdale, p. 748. c His words are: "As for my calling those at London a parliament, I shall refer "thee toDigby for particular satisfaction; this in general: If there had been but two besides myself of my opinion, I had not done it; and the argument that prevailed with me was, that the call"ing did no ways acknowledge them to be a parliament ; upon which condition and construction I did it, and no otherwise, *' and accordingly it is registered in the council books, with the council's unanimous approbation." "the king's cabinet opened. Rush. vol. iv. p. 943.

Chap- portant articles, religion, the militia, and Ireland; and yj^^/ that these should be successively discussed in confei645. rence with the king's commissioners/1 It was soon found impracticable to come to any agreement with regard to any of these articles.

In the summer 1643, while the negotiations were carried on with Scotland, the parliament had summoned an assembly at Westminster, consisting of 121 divines and 30 laymen, celebrated in their party for piety and learning. By their advice, alterations were made in the thirty-nine articles, or in the metaphysical doctrines of the church; and, what was of greater importance, the liturgy was entirely abolished, and in its stead, a new directory for worship was established; by which, suitably to the spirit of the puritans, the utmost liberty, both in praying and preaching, was indulged to the public teachers. By the solemn league and covenant, episcopacy was abjured, as destructive of all true piety; and a national engagement, attended with every circumstance that could render a promise sacred and obligatory, was entered into with the Scots, never to suffer its re-admission. All these measures shewed little spirit of accommodation in the parliament; and the king's commissioners were not surprised to find the establishment of presbytery and the directory positively demanded, together with the subscription of the covenant, both by the king and kingdom/

Had

* Whitlocke, p. 121. Dugdale, p. 758. e Such love of contradiction prevailed in the parliament, that they had converted Christmas, which, with the churchmen, was a great festival, into a solemn fast and humiliation; "In order," as they said, "that it might call to remembrance our sins and the sins of our "forefathers, who, pretending to celebrate the memory of "Christ, have turned this feast into an extreme forgetfulness of "him, by giving liberty to carnal and sensual delights." Rushvol. vi. p. 817. It is remarkable that,as the parliament abolished all holy days, and severely prohibited all amusement on the sabbath; and even burned, by the hands of the hangman, the

king's

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