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doing" that both in church and state, which must needs dishonour and pollute his name;
“ If he will bring him again with peace, honour, and safety to his chief city," without repenting, without satisfying for the blood spilt, only for a few politic concessions, which are as good as nothing;
"If he will put again the sword into his hand, to punish" those that have delivered us, and to protect delinquents against the justice of parliament;
Then, if it be possible to reconcile contradictions, he will praise him by displeasing him, and serve him by disserving him.
“ His glory,” in the gaudy copes and painted windows, mitres, rochets, altars, and the chanted service-book, “shall be dearer to him,” than the establishing his crown in righteousness, and the spiritual power of religion. “He will pardon those that have offended him in particular;” but there shall want no subtle ways to be even with them
another score of their supposed offences against the commonwealth ; whereby he may at once affect the glory of a seeming justice, and destroy them pleasantly, while he feigns to forgive them as to his own particular, and outwardly bewails them.
These are the conditions of his treating with God, to whom he bates nothing of what he stood upon with the parliament: as if commissions of array could deal with him also. But of all these conditions, as it is now evident in our eyes, God accepted none, but that final petition, which he so oft, no doubt but by the secret judgment of God, importunes against his own head; praying God, “That his mercies might be so toward him, as his resolutions of truth and peace were toward his people.” It follows then, God having cut him off without granting any of these mercies, that his resolution were as feigned as his vows were frustrate.
CHAPTER XXVI. Upon the Army's Surprisal of the King at Holmby. To give account to royalists what was done with their vanquished king, yielded up into our hands, is not expected froin them whom God hath made his conquerors. And for
brethren to debate and rip up their falling out in the ear of a common enemy, thereby making him the judge, or at least the well-pleased auditor of their disagreement, is neither wise nor comely. To the king therefore, were he living, or to his party yet l'emaining, as to this action, there belongs no answer. Emulations, all men know, are incident among military men;
are, if they exceed not, pardonable. But some of the former army, eminent enough for their own martial deeds, anu prevalent in the house of commons, touched with envy to be so far outdone by a new model,* which they contemned, took advantage of presbyterian and independent names, and the virulence of some ministers, to raise disturbance. And the war being ended, thought slightly to have discarded them who had faithfully done the work, without their due pay, and the reward of their invincible valour.
But they who had the sword yet in their own hands, disdaining to be made the first objects of ingratitude and oppression, after all that expense of their blood for justice, and the common liberty, seized upon the king, their prisoner, whom nothing but their matchless deeds had brought so low as to surrender up his person : though he, to stir up new discord, chose rather to give up himself a captive to his own countrymen, who less had won him. This in likelihood might have grown to some height of mischief, partly through the strife which was kindling between our elder and our younger warriors, but chiefly through the seditious tongues of some false ministers, more zealous against schisms than against their own simony and pluralities or watchful of the common enemy, whose subtle insinuations had got so far in among them, as with all diligence to blow the coals. But it pleased God not to embroil and put to confusion his whole people for the perverseness of a few. The growth of our dissension was either prevented, or soon quieted : the enemy soon deceived of his rejoicing, and the king especially disappointed of not the meanest morsel that his hope presented him, to ruin us by our division. And being now so nigh the end, we
* Cromwell, of whom in his “ Defensio Secundo Pro Populo Anglicano," he has drawn a character never surpassed by that of any commander celeizated in history. His sonnet, too, addressed to the Lord General Cromwell must here present itself to the reader's mind; " Cromwell, our chief of men, &c.”—ED.
may the better be at leisure to stay a while, and hear him come menting upon his own captivity.
He saith of his surprisal, that it was a motion eccentric and irregular.” What then? his own allusion from the celestial bodies puts us in mind, that irregular motions înay be necessary on earth sometimes, as well as constantly in heaven. That is not always best, which is most regular to written law. Great worthies heretofore, by disobeying law, ofttimes have saved the commonwealth; and the law afterward by firm decree hath approved that planetary motion, that unblamable exorbitancy in them.
He means no good to either independent or presbyterian, and yet his parable, like that of Balaam, is overruled to portend them good, far beside his intention. Those twins, that strove enclosed in the womb of Rebecca, were the seed of Abraham: the younger undoubtedly gained the heavenly birthright; the elder, though supplanted in his simile, shall yet no question find a better portion than Esau found, and far above bis uncircumcised prelates.
He censures, and in censuring seems to hope it will be an ill omen, that they who built Jerusalem divided their tongues and hands. But his hope failed him with his example; for that there were divisions both of tongues and hands at the building of Jerusalem, the story would have certified him; and yet the work prospered; and, if God will, so may this, notwithstanding all the craft and malignant wiles of Sanballat and Tobiah, adding what fuel they can to our dissensions; or the indignity of his comparison, that likens us to those seditious zealots, whose intestine fury brought destruction to the last Jerusalem.
It being now no more in his hand to be revenged on his opposers, he seeks to satiate his fancy with the imagination of some revenge upon them from above; and, like one who in a drouth observes the sky, he sits and watches when anything will drop, that might solace him with the likeness of a punishment from heaven upon as; which he straight expounds how he pleases. No evil can befall the parliament or city but he positively interprets it a judgment upon them for his sake; as if the very manuscript of God's judgments had been delivered to his custody and exposition. But his reading declares it well to be a false copy which he uses ; dispensing often to his own
bad deeds and successes the testimuny of divine favour, and to the good deeds and successes of other men divine wrath and vengeance.
But to counterfeit the hand of God is the boldest of all forgery:* And he who without warrant but his own fantastic surmise, takes upon him perpetually to unfold the secret and unsearchable mysteries of high providence, is likely for the most part to mistake and slander them; and approaches to the madness of those reprobate thoughts that would wrest the sword of justice out of God's hand, and employ it more justly in their own conceit. It was a small thing to contend with the parliament about the sole power of the militia, when we see him doing little less than laying hands on the weapons of God himself, which are his judgments, to wield and manage them by the sway and bent of his own frail cogitations. Therefore they that by tumults first occasioned the raising of armies” in his doom must needs “ be chastened by their own army for new tumults.”
First, note here his confession, that those tumults were the first occasion of raising armies, and by consequence that he himself raised them first, against those supposed tumults. But who occasioned those tumults, or who made them so, being at first nothing more than the unarmed and peaceable concourse of people, hath been discussed already. And that those pretended tumults were chastised by their own army for new tumults, is not proved by a game at tic-tac with words; “tumults and armies, armies and tumults,” but seems more like the method of a justice irrational than divine.
If the city were chastened by the army for new tumults, the reason is by himself set down evident and immediate, “ their new tumults.” With what sense can it be referred then to another far-fetched and imaginary cause, that happened so many years before, and in his supposition only as a cause ? Manlius defended the capitol and the Romans from their enemies the Gauls; Manlius for sedition aftere ward was by the Romans thrown headlong from the capitol; therefore Manlius was punished by divine justice for defending the capitol, because in that place punished for sedition, and by those whom he defended. This is his logic upon divine justice; and was the same before upon the death of Sir John Hotham. And here again,“ such as were content to see him driven away by unsuppressed tumults, are now forced to fly to an army. Was this a judgment? Was it not a mercy rather, that they had a noble and victorious army so near at hand to fly to ?
* This passage, and what follows, approaching the prophetic style of eluquence, display an awful grandeur, which nothing in our language can
In the same spirit, but with far less vigour, Pope exclaims to the proud reasoner
“ Sn itch from His hand the balance and the rod,
(Essuy on Man. Book I. v. 121, seq.)-ED.
From God's justice he comes down to man's justice. Those few of both houses who at first withdrew with him for the vain pretence of tumults, were counted deserters; therefore those many must be also deserters, who withdrew afterwards from real tumults: as if it were the place that made a parliament, and not the end and cause. Because it is denied that those were tumults, from which the king made shew of being driven, is it therefore of necessity implied, that there could be never any tumults for the future? If some men fly in craft, may not other men have cause to fly in earnest? But mark the difference between their flight and his: they soon returned in safety to their places, he not till after many years, and then a captive to receive his punishment. So that their flying, whether the cause be considered, or the event, or both, neither justified him, nor condemned themselves.
But he will needs have vengeance to pursue and overtake them; though to bring it in, it cost him an inconvenient and obnoxious comparison, “As the mice and rats overtook a German bishop."* I would our mice and rats had been as
* This is an allusion to the well-known story of Hatto, Archbishop of Mentz, one of the most popular of the Legends of the Rhine. As it has been made familiar to the English reader in Southey's ballad, “God's Judgment on a Bishop,” we abstain from relating it here. Mice and rats, however, in the Legendary history of mankind, have sometimes been employed on still more useful and important services than demolishing a German bishop. Herodotus, on the authority of the Egyptian priests, attributes to those warlike little vermin the destruction of Sennacherib's army at Pelusium ; where a prodigious multitude of field-mice invading the Assyrian camp by night, ate up their quivers, bowstrings, and shield-thongs, so that, in the morning, finding themselves disarmed, they immediately took to flight, pursued and slaughtered by the Egyptians. In gratitude for this deliverance, Sethos (then