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of parliament, the people's lawful representatives, annulling a vote of the house which agreed to the king's concessions, passing another vote which declared the House of Peers a useless branch of the constitution, assumed to themselves the whole legislative and executive authority of government. The perversion of that man's understanding must be deplorable indeed, who professing himself an advocate for the rights of mankind, holds these to be laudable exertions of virtue and of patriotism.
COMMONWEALTH OF ENGLAND, REIGNS OF CHARLES II. AND JAMES II.:-Charles II. acknowledged King in Scotland and Ireland-Marquis of Montrose-Cromwell defeats the Scots at Dunbar Battle of Worcester-Navigation Act-Cromwell dissolves the Parliament by violence, and puts an end to the Republic-Barebones Parliament-Cromwell named Lord Protector-His successful Administration-DeathRichard his son resigns the Protectorate-the Rump Parlia ment-Disunion in the Council of Officers-General Monk -Charles II. proclaimed-Profuse and voluptuous ReignWar with Holland and France-Plague and Fire of London -Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle-Alarms of Popery-Titus Oates-Bill excluding the Duke of York from the CrownHabeas Corpus Act-Distinction of Whig and Tory first used-Conspiracy of Russell, Sidney, and MonmouthDeath of Charles-James II.-Monmouth beheaded-Vio lent Measures of James excite the Disgust of all PartiesWilliam, Prince of Orange-James escapes to the Continent -Crown settled on the Prince and Princess of Orange -Declaration fixing the Constitution.
THAT select assembly of sixty or seventy fanatical Independents, which styled itself a parliament, having passed a vote which abolished the House of Peers as a useless part of the constitution, began to think of framing some rules and forms
for the administration of the government; and the more disinterested friends to liberty were soothed for some time with their favourite system, a republic. The Scots, however, of whom the great majority had yet an attachment to monarchy, and who had sufficient reason for being disgusted at the conduct of the Independents to the English Presbyterians, determined to acknowledge the son of the late monarch for their lawful sovereign, and with the consent of parliament they proclaimed Charles II. king; but on the express condition of his subscribing the solemn League and Covenant. Ireland recognised him without any conditions.
The Scots, while they were thus inviting Charles to take possession of one of his paternal kingdoms, gave an example of that cruel and detestable fanatic spirit, which to their shame they seem to have possessed at this time above every other nation. James Graham, marquis of Montrose, a man whose heroism and singular endowments of mind would have rendered him an honour to any age or nation, had, in the latter years of the late monarch, distinguished himself in many successful attempts, both in Scotland and in England, in favour of the royal cause. After the king's captivity, when the war was at an end, he had, at his sovereign's command, laid down his arms and retired into France. Upon the king's death, with the aid of some foreign troops, he landed in the north of Scotland, with the purpose of reducing the party of the Covenanters, and establishing the authority of Charles II. upon a constitutional basis, independent of those servile conditions which that party was desirous of imposing on him. He ex
pected to be joined by a large body of the Highlanders, but he found the whole country fatigued with the recent disorders, and much indisposed to renew hostilities. In the mean time he was suddenly attacked by a large body of the Covenanters, and taken by surprise with an inferior force, he was defeated and made prisoner. His fate was attended with every circumstance of insolence and cruelty, which distinguishes revenge in the meanest of souls. He died upon a gibbet, and his limbs were distributed through the principal cities of the kingdom. This was he whom one of the most penetrating judges of character (the cardinal de Retz, who intimately knew him) declares to have been one of those heroes of whom there are no longer any remains in the world, and who are only to be met with in the narratives of ancient history.
Meantime Charles, who had no other resource, betook himself to Scotland, and was obliged, however unwillingly, to accede to every condition that was proposed to him. Fairfax, general of the parliament, had resigned all command of the army, and Cromwell, who was now commander-in-chief, after a successful expedition into Ireland to quell the party of the royalists in that country, marched with 16,000 men into Scotland, against his old friends and allies the Covenanters, who, now that Charles had subscribed to their terms, had become his firm adherents. They were much superior to Cromwell's army in number of their troops, but were as much inferior in point of discipline. They were defeated at Dunbar, in a deci sive engagement; and Charles, soon after retreating
into England in hopes to unite the royalists in that country in his favour, Cromwell immediately followed, and attacking the royal army at Worcester, then extremely inconsiderable in their numbers, cut them entirely to pieces. Charles fled in disguise through the western counties of England, continually pursued, encountering for above forty days a most romantic series of dangers and difficulties, and often relying for safety on the meanest peasants, whose fidelity he found unshaken, notwithstanding the immense rewards which were offered for his discovery. At length he found a vessel which conveyed him to the coast of France.
Cromwell in the mean time returned in triumph to London. The republican parliament began now to make their government truly respectable, by the greatness of those designs which they formed, and the vigour with which they pursued them. A scheme was proposed to the states of Holland upon the death of the Stadtholder William II., for an union and coalition between the two republics. It was not relished by the Dutch, who were better pleased to maintain their own independence; and the parliament of England, piqued at their refusal, inmediately declared war against them. The navigation act was passed, which prohibited all foreigners from importing into England in their ships any commodity which was not the growth or manufacture of their own country; an act which struck heavily against the Dutch, because their country produces few com. modities; and their commerce consists chiefly in being the factors of other nations. This statute