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began to think all religion was hypocrisy. The Puritans forbade all the amusements of the people— broke down the Maypoles, and set the fiddlers in the stocks; the festivals of Christmas and Easter were no longer to be observed, and all the old holidays were done away with. The apprentices of London made such a clamour at this, that the second Tuesday in each month was given them for a holiday. And in general the people submitted very impatiently, and grew no better for all the restraints imposed on them.

Indeed, a great many of those persons who wished to bring the king back again, tried to be as riotous and profane as they could, just to show that they despised the sad-looking, solemn-speaking puritans. Seven years of war and bloodshed had greatly injured the character of the nation; and good men who lived in those days have left a sad picture of the change which had come over England: former piety, charity, and plain dealing had given place to the contempt for sacred things, covetousness, strife, and perjury.

With all Cromwell's faults, he had the honour of his country at heart, and did much to fulfil his words, that "he would make the name of an Englishman to be as much feared as that of a Roman had ever been." Under his protectorate, all the states of Europe courted the alliance of England, and the British flag rode triumphant in every sea. Under Admiral Blake, and Monk, who was as good a commander at sea as on land, English fleets vanquished the Dutch and the Spaniards, and forced the Italians and the pirates of Barbary to make amends for the wrongs of which they had been guilty towards the British merchant-ships.

Blake did not become a sailor till he was fifty years of age, yet he is one of our most famous admirals. His last and greatest exploit was the seizing the Spanish treasure-fleet in the harbour of Santa Cruz, in the isle of Teneriffe. The harbour was so strongly fortified with a castle at the entrance and forts all round, and there were so many ships of war ready to repel all intruders, that the Spaniards thought themselves perfectly safe. But a Dutchman, whose ship was lying there, went to the governor the moment he heard Blake's fleet was near, and besought leave to quit the harbour at once; "For I am sure," said he, "Blake will be amongst you very soon." The governor laughed at his fears: "Go, if you will, and let Blake come if he dares." It would have been hard to find the thing which Blake dared not do. He sailed boldly into Santa Cruz Bay, faced the fire of the castle, silenced all the smaller forts, and, having seized the treasure-ships he was in search of, returned by the way he came, without losing a single vessel. The damage done to the Spaniards on sea and on shore was immense, but they comforted themselves with the notion, that the English must have been devils, and not men, to attack them in such a situation.

At home, every one longed to heap honours on Blake, but he was very ill, and longed only for one thing-to see England again before he died. Very often, when he could no longer go on deck, he used to ask if the white cliffs were in sight yet. But he saw them no more. Just as the victorious squadron entered Plymouth harbour, and the flag-ship of the dying admiral "came within sight of the eager thou



sands who crowded the beach, the pier-heads, the walls of the citadel, ready to catch the first glimpse of the hero of Santa Cruz, and salute him with a true English welcome-he, in his silent cabin, in the midst of his lion-hearted comrades, now sobbing like little children, yielded up his soul to God."

Jamaica had already been conquered from the Spaniards, and in 1658, Dunkirk was taken, much to the gratification of the people, for Englishmen had not yet left off regretting the loss of Calais, their one town on the continent of Europe. Dunkirk was the last acquisition of Cromwell; on the 3d of September, 1658, he died. His last years had been harassed with fears, lest some of the persons who were discontented with his government should murder him. He wore armour under his ordinary dress-never stirred abroad unless surrounded by guards-never returned by the same road—nor slept in the same apartment more than two or three nights at a time. But he died quietly in his bed, and was interred with more than royal pomp in Westminster Abbey, among the tombs of the kings.

He left his dignity of Lord Protector to his son Richard, who was an honest country-gentleman, not at all fit for such a station, or inclined to it. The army soon gave him to understand that they would not submit to a second Lord Protector, and Richard quietly gave up his post. His brother Henry also gave up the command of Ireland.



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(From 1659 to 1660.)

ENGLAND seemed now to have no ruler. The republicans hoped they should be able to set up their favourite government; and the royalists longed to call back Charles the Second, and place him on his father's throne; but no one ventured to propose this, from fear of the army, who were by much the most powerful body in the state. They elected a certain number of officers from each regiment, and formed them into a "Committee of Safety," which was to govern the commonwealth. The people hated the thought of these military tyrants. But there was a deliverer at hand whom they had not dreamt of.

Monk, the commander of Scotland, was a very silent, prudent man, but at heart a royalist; and he was resolved to restore, if possible, the good old government by King, Lords, and Commons. He set out from Scotland with his little army of 7000 veterans; and no sooner was it known that Monk had entered England, and was marching towards London, than the whole nation rose up against the "Committee of Safety." Even the soldiers deserted their leaders to go over to Monk's side. All this while Monk had only said he would have a free parliament. But every one knew that a free parliament would call back the king, and all England was filled with joyful expectation.

Once more, the members of the House of Com

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mons, who had been expelled by Colonel Pride, and by Cromwell, came back to their places, but only to issue writs for a new parliament, and to declare themselves dissolved. This was the end of the Long Parliament, March, 1660, more than nineteen years after its first assembling.

The new parliament quickly assembled; and, for the first time for many years, the House of Lords met as well as the House of Commons. Monk proposed the recall of the king. Not one voice was raised against it, and, on the 8th of May, Charles the Second was proclaimed at London, amidst such rejoicings as had not been seen since the accession of Queen Elizabeth. The fleet set out for Holland to take the king on board, and on the 27th of May he landed at Dover, in sight of an innumerable multitude of spectators, who covered the cliffs, and wept for very gladness. His journey to London, which he entered two days afterwards, on his thirtieth birthday, "was a continued triumph. The whole road from Rochester was bordered by booths and tents, and looked like an interminable fair. Everywhere flags were flying, bells and music sounding, wine and ale flowing in rivers to the health of him whose return was the return of peace, of law, and of freedom." "It must have been my own fault that I did not come back before," said Charles, laughing, "for every one says he is glad to see me."

Amongst those who attended the king, and shared his triumph, was his brother Henry, duke of Gloucester, now nineteen years old. Henry had grown up with a high reputation as a youth of gallant spirit, and blameless conduct; and he died before the breath

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