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are one already. What is a Parliament, but
is the substance, the judge, and the bench, but there is not the form. Necessity is a great commander, but an ill companion, and a worse counsellor. And this house must expect, in other cases, never to want that argument. Some precedents have been spoken of, to induce this method; one of Wm. Rufus, (which is of no authority to govern you) how the nobles did assist him against his brother Robert, who claimed the crown; but that was no parliament, nor had the power of a parliament. The only precedents mentioned are those of Wm. Rufus, and the 12th of Charles 2. They made not themselves a Parliament, but in reWelation to the Long Parliament that dissolved itself, and that done with a 'ne trahatur in exemplum.' When the people are called together, by such writ as this, I am bold to say, there are no precedents. It has been said, out of doors, this is by the precedent of Edw. 3. I find that matter totally mistaken: Edw. 2. was driven out of the kingdom by his son and his mother: he absconded, and by a wind was driven into Wales, and her son was custos regni. And the first act of Edw. 3. does declare, That, whereas the late lord Edw. 2. by the general advice and assent of his earls and barons, had voluntarily removed himself out of the realm, they declare Edw. 3. regent of the realm.' I would not, as other gentlemen say, stick at precedents, and think that you are as well qualified to make precedents as to follow others. Yet, there is no necessity to remove ancient land-marks, and to let our purses run out at the back-door. Our condition is attended with many difficulties; Ireland is in ill condition, and we hear nothing from Scotland but uncertainty. The king of France has been the Devil and walking Ghost in every parliament. What could you expect from Ireland? They will own no obedience to the Prince of Ŏrange, but when he is crowned. They are so far from coming to you, that they are driven from you. The person (Hamilton*)
Sir Tho. Lee. I would not trouble you, but that I find you entirely at leisure. Says Maynard, You cannot make this a parliament, because you are one already from the beginning. If nobody be against it, pray let the Speaker take the chair.
Sir Rob. Howard. Here seems a general satisfaction in what has been said: therefore report it to the Chair.
Sir Edw. Seymour. If I were satisfied this was a Parliament, I would not go about to offer reasons against it. If I am put on that stress, to say my opinion, I will not justly move to exceptions. If I do not fully come up to their sense, I hope they will give me their pardon, as I shall do to them. If you concluded the Vacancy of the Throne,' I am concluded by it. For the preservation of the Protestant Religion, those ways are most prudent that are most legal and lasting. This Bill from the lords began there; on Monday it was twice read, and came down here on Tuesday: it is a great rarity, and much done in little time; and I never saw a Bill of so different a nature. It makes every man in as high a nature criminal as the law can make it. You declare yourselves a Parliament, and the law says, you are not a parliament; and so we are all liable to the statute of the Tests, and all incapacitated to sit here: and, then, those who were for dispensing with the Penal Laws, and joined in those things, you bring yourselves under the same capacity. I would have the gentlemen of the long robe tell you, whether if you declare yourselves a Parliament, you are not liable to the statute? When it is neither legal nor prudential to do it, whether then is it necessary? That Statute, which Maynard mentioned, could not make that a parliament which was none before. That parliament had the consent of the king de facto and de jure; there wanted only the king's writ of summons. If they say, you were no parliament before, what record will make you a parhament now, is no where to be found. The law requires, that the sheriff return the jury of nisi prius, and the criminal, &c. who are not always the best men of the county. Suppose the bench impannel the best men in it, there
"Lieut. Gen. Hamilton was sent over to Ireland. He was a Papist, but was believed to be a man of honour, and had great interest with the earl of Tyrconnel. So he undertook to go over to Ireland, and to prevail with the earl of Tyrconnel to deliver up the government; and promised that he would either bring him to it, or that he would come back, and give an account of his negotiation. This step had a very ill effect; for before Hamilton came to Dublin, the earl of Tyrconnel was in such despair, looking on all as lost, that he seemed to be very near a full resolution of entering on a treaty to get the best terms he could. But Hamilton's coming changed him quite. He represented to him, that things were turning fast in England in favour of the king; so that, if he stood firm, all would come round again. He saw, that he must study to manage this so dexterously, as to gain as much time as he could, that so the prince might not make too much haste, before a Fleet and Supplies might
was so far from bringing them over to obedience, that he makes it his endeavour to keep them from you. I speak with good intention to the Protestant Religion in Ireland, which is in danger to be gone with him. Through all the course of my life, I had rather have unkindness than carry on an ill thing about me. A great many preliminaries ought to be thought of; you will not think fit that England should be at all the charge to reduce Ireland: you know formerly there were Adventurers, and you may raise a great deal of money that way. There are two ways to reduce Ireland; present supply of arms and money; but, if not, such as will preserve you, and master then they will be masters of whatever you send, if you attempt, and fail in the attempt; and it will be hard to reduce it after. speak this, not thinking there is a necessity for Money to carry it on. The present Revenue will go a great way towards it, together with the public security; and no doubt but loyal London will supply their Prince upon this exigency, and supply fully, rather than let the work stand still. We are called as a Council, and may so continue; for we have no declared enemy, and are in a condition of peace till war be declared; and there is none, and we have no league. Can we require any thing to be done, before the king be civilly dead, and parties not in being? I speak not this to reflect on him that has done so much for us. I would not only have him paid the charge he has been at, but have
Eugland's bounty too to go along with him. England has done formerly for Holland, as Holland has done now for England. But I should be glad to see us a legal Parliament, that we may have the people's hearts along with us; and then we shall be sure of their Money. As a Council, we may sit, and represent to the king, that we are not impowered. by those that sent us, and desire him to issue out writs to chuse a parliament. The Revenue last year was 2,100,000 and odd pounds; the expences 1,800,000l.; a large proportion of it to the Fleet; many Pensions, and for Secret Service; I hope we shall hear no more of that: besides the Privy Purse 150,000l. You have sufficient for all your difficulties, and need not turn yourselves into a Parliament for that. In the Palatinate War, you had a committee to manage it. And you may have time to digest all for Ireland, and writs may go out. In the mean time, we may sit as a Council, and this will bring us into no difficulties. I have deliwillvered my opinion, and now do what you please.
come from France. So several letters were wrote over by the same management, giving assurances, that the earl of Tyrconnel was fully resolved to treat and submit. And, to carry this farther, two Commissioners were sent from the Council-board to France. Their Instructions were to represent to the king the necessity of Ireland's submitting to England. Tyrconnel pretended that, in honour, he could do no less than disengage himself to his master before he laid down the government. Yet he seemed resolved not to stay for an answer or a consent; but that, as soon as this Message was delivered, he would submit upon good conditions and for these, he knew, he should have all that he asked. With this management he gained his point, which was much time; and he now fancied, that the honour of restoring the king would belong chiefly to himself. Thus Hamilton, by breaking his own faith, secured the earl of Tyrconnel to the king, and this gave the beginning to the war of Ireland. Those who had advised the sending over of Hamilton, were much out of countenance; and it was believed that it had a terrible effect on sir Wm. Temple's son, who had raised in the Prince a high opinion of Hamilton's honour. Soon after that, he, who had no other visible cause of melancholy besides this, went into a boat on the Thames, near the bridge, where the river runs most impetuously, and leaped into the river, and was drowned." Burnet.
Serj. Maynard. If Seymour speaks confusedly, I must answer him confusedly. He seems to speak with great reason at first sight; but, looked into, it is just nothing. I will answer him to what is material as well as my old memory will run along with him. When we cannot have a legal parliament, how shall we possess that which is legal?' He spoke of the Statute, &c. and Tests: the objection is true; no parliament can sit here, till they have taken the Oaths and Tests: but, under favour, that will not come to our case; that Oath was to the late king, and now, what oath can we take to a king out of the throne? You remember what he did, and your Vote upon it. Can we swear still? I hold it impossible to take that oath, and that act does cease of itself. I do not say we make ourselves a parliament. But if this be declared a parliament by a parliament of the whole nation, who dares say against it? It is impossible to take the Oath of Allegiance, without being perjured ipso facto. I would have Seymour answer me, as I do him: shall I swear to an impossibility? A man in a wilderness, and out of his way, asks, Where is the high-way? That gentleman cries, where is the Law? When we cannot find it, we must have recourse to the law of nations. Salus populi suprema lex esto. Says Seymour, 'There is no necessity to make this a Parliament; there is no king, nor any declared enemy beyond sea: but he that would destroy his own people for Religion, I am sure, is no friend of ours. Is he not an enemy that receives all that go from us in discontent? I would not have you entangled with a fine speech; I hope we shall not farther dispute upon words, as we have done some weeks, but necessity puts us upon the best way we can take. All the event of this will be to make a difference betwixt the lords and us. I will not say it is Seymour's intent, but what greater difference can there be han when the lords say we are a parlia
ment, and we shall say, we are not a parliament? There is a great danger in sending out writs at this time, if you consider what a ferment the nation is in; and I think the clergy are out of their wits; and, I believe, if the clergy should have their wills, few or none of us should be here again; and never any Popish prince but would not only be the destruction of the Protestant Religion, but the Protestants must go to pot; as in France, Bohemia, and Hungary; and all by the instigation of the Clergy. What is a Parliament then? The Convention was not called by the king's writs legally, yet were declared a parliament; and you will not declare yourselves no parliament, unless you are out of your wits.
Sir Robert Sawyer. As to what Maynard said with reflection on the Clergy, I desire to take off that reflection. They have as great a submission to your Vote as can be. I speak of the clergy of Cambridge. I had a letter from Cambridge yesterday, (the place I serve for) which gives me notice, that they are very well satisfied with what you have done; and if they had time, they would have petitioned for a Parliament to be chosen; and I have authority from them to let you know they are to give Money to support the government; and I know how to give my vote. The oaths must be taken, or else all we have done is void; therefore whether you will do it now like those in authority.
Mr. Eyre. The matter you are upon is of great consequence; therefore I hope you will pursue those counsels which tend most to peace. The way to those ends is full of difficulties. I shall not meddle with politic considerations (with Seymour) but the proper matter now before you. The objections against the lords Bill return upon them that made them. If we are not constituted a Parliament under these circumstances now, we may never have one in England more- -13 Ch. 2, No Members are to sit till they have taken the oaths by the statute 5 Eliz.; and the oaths not taken voids the election: then all those elections were void; unless those acts are repealed, how will you ever come by it? Must not the next parliament make themselves one by a law? But if a false step must be made, why should it not be by us, whilst our wounds yet bleed, and not leave it to another body of men to heal, six weeks hence, and the wound past remedy? Being to build as of old, with weapons in our hands, as the Jews did, I would not lay them down till we have built in security. We are in an infant government, if I may so style it; it must be preserved by the hand that brought it up. Are we sure our successors will be of our mind? Nay, the present ferment of the nation, which time may quiet, may be so hot as to give up their own security. The present necessity is great, as great as the support of our honour, religion, and country-necessity abrogates all laws. The precedents of this, that are demanded, are not to be expected: it is not in every king's reign that he abdicates the government. As to the precedents of Edw. 2, and Rd. 2, none of these come to our case immediately: necessity gave them a sanction; and where there is the same necessity, there is the same reason. We are as full a Representative as can be had; by the call of the Prince's Letters, we have the best Representative of the People that could be had. Is the difference of a writ and a letter put into the scale with the safety of the Protestant Religion? We may pay tythe of mint, anise and cummin, and neglect the greater matters of the law. Tares may be sown whilst we are absent; which to prevent, and bring forth peace, so luckily brought to the birth, I would bave the lords Bill read a second time,
Sir Tho. Clarges. I stand up with great trouble. As I am now advised, if this Convention be turned into a Parliament, it is the greatest disservice you can to the king. I would preserve both his honour and safety. If any thing be wanting in the Revenue, nothing can supply it but a parliament. You may have a parliament in 25 days; 1,200,000l. may be raised for Ireland and Holland, all the charge of the government, and for provision for the royal family. We may spare a million, if such a sum be requisite, to assist us for the present, and for other things they may keep cold for a month. If this be so, we are not in such danger as to fly out of the window. Some things necessity has drawn us into; those are of the least necessity; but to raise Money is the greatest thing. I hope it is that the king expects from us, and that we are not trusted to do by those that sent us. In the reign of Ch. 2, the parliament did settle a Revenue on the king's two brothers; the officers of the revenue told us, that it was not 200,000l. a year. A great man told a story, that a sum of money was paid, and wanted a crown; the party would have told their Money, but the other would not let him. They would not let the committee then examine it, for certainly they would have found it more. Where there is a necessity to give, I will give as plentifully as any body, but let us do it fairly, and by full authority. As we are, we shall have no credit upon it; when we come again we may be a lawful parliament; and I believe the people will send you again. A merry man said once in this house, 'Some can stop and turn managed horses.' As for the Clergy of London, they are as learned as any since the time of the Apostles. The Church of England brought us in Ch. 2, and stood constant in these last trials. I ever thought those laws too hard to press mens consciences. They stood like Apostles in Magdalen College case, which is remarkable. I hope the vacant bishoprick of Salisbury will be filled with one of that College. Salus Populi is suprema lex, you are told, but if ever you break down the hedges of the government
* Vacant by the death of bishop Ward. Dr. Burnet was advanced to it.
-And properly we cannot agree with the | for Religion. I see a wheel within a wheel in
these things. I would look on the wheel within my eye. But suppose another parl. (it seems) must have the thanks for what has been done, and not you; they must be the white boys. You have it before you, go on, make your prince love you; but it seems you shall not do it, and a succeeding parliament must make a fine hand of this work for you. When once May comes, it will not be pleasant sitting here. Many worthy gentlemen formerly have lost their lives by it. Great revolutions may be in one year and you are lost for your Allies, Religion, and all you have. This over-runs all; think on this seriously, and go forward with heart and hand: God has done it all; let us not throw it down again. From the best of precedents, that of 1660, you are a Parliament; you make not yourselves a parliament. Pray go on and read the lords bill.
Sir Tho. Lee. I think we are a much better parliament than that of 1660. I would know where the writ was then that called the lords? Parliaments are not the same things they were from the beginning; they have had variations. Was not the Prince of Orange invested with legal authority by you? And the returns of us hither recorded? If you are not a parliament, how can you represent the people in a parlia mentary manner, and then what becomes of your Instrument of Government, and what else you have done? The laws against Popery, and the Test, were made when you had no prospect of king James's abdication; and where were the Oaths of Allegiance, &c. when these gentlemen went in to the Prince? I believe the people like you so well, they will either send you again or better. Clarges has told you, you cannot raise Money, and, at the same time, tells you, the Revenue may be raised for present use. We are told of relief of Ireland; and what next must be told? You are no Parliament, and you raise the king's Revenue. The king may search for his Revenue, and will find it no more legal than now, and no oaths taken-I say that you are and were a Parliament, from the beginning.
-Serj. Maynard. There is only one question to be insisted on, whether we are a Parliament, and what we shall do when we are a Parliament? Clarges speaks honestly, as I believe he thinks. As for the Clergy, I have much honour for high and low of them, but I must say they are in a ferment, there are Pluralists among them, and when they should preach the Gospel, they preach against the Parliament, and the law of England. I did not speak against the clergy in general.
Col. Birch. I have heard a debate of this nature 40 years ago, and I stand amazed at it: I will not bring the precedents of Edw. 2, and Hen. 4, to justify our proceedings, but what I remember of my knowledge. I hope we shall not fall under this debate now, and not 40 years ago, when we were under much harder circumstances, when any little words dropt then, about the validity of that parliament, they were smiled at, and not worth an answer. When Oliver was proposed to be made a king here, that was laughed at then; and I believe this debate will be so now. I intreat a little of your patience; that parliament of 1660 was not so clearly called as this. Cavaliers were excluded by those that had power to do it, and they did it. It was called by writ from the keepers of the liberties of England, that brought us hither. Then all the learned gentlemen here, sir Matthew Hale and the rest, were of opinion, it was a Parliament to all intents and purposes, and nothing of a Convention was spoken of; and to work they went, and very vigorously, and not one question was made of the legality of that writ, and that parliament gave two assessments of 60,000l. per mensem, before that Act came in to declare it a Parliament; but there was a great deal more done before the king came in, all the acts that could be done that were necessary, and if one word was spoken against it, it was smiled at. That objection about the Oaths has some weight; but in that parliament of 1660 not an oath was taken : about six weeks after, the duke of Ormond gave the oaths to the members, which was far from any regularity; and at the open-yet touched upon. Has any man said yet we ing that parliament, there were not above are not a full and free Representative? Formaeight or nine lords in the house. There was a lities are wanting, you are told, but they are Fast ordered, and a Thanksgiving, and confe- such as could not be had; your elections were rences with the lords, and not one word of as free as ever. No precedent was ever of a questioning the validity of that parliament; freer. In the parliament of 1660, there were and now that God has done this for us, to qualifications for the members, and the lord's make difficulties when really there is none, I were not called by writ, and (a greater thing,) cannot see them, from what has been prac- a Commonwealth called it, which was quite tised. Now, to show you the consequence; another government. There was a time when for Money should you stay for another parlia- parliaments met without writs, and king John's ment, if you get one in three weeks, a plot was the first called by Letters, as now, and may be upon you, in the interim, and then you nobody having showed any thing against the will have difficulties still, and perhaps more authority that called you, I will not labour it. than are on you now. And will you, by In Henry 4th's time, the same parliament was throwing away this opportunity, void all the called again, and they raised Money. When blessings God has given you? You have, by the Assembly of Lords and Commons met, the God's providence, a king that denies you no prince said he would advise with them of the thing, and now we would be scrambling again best manner to call a free Parliament;' and
Sir Rd. Temple. I shall offer something not
they advised him to send his Letters. Have not you done the greatest thing, and now stumble at the less? How you can justify all you have done, if you are not a Parliament called in as good a manner as could be, admits no
der and Letter,' which is in order to call a free and legal parliament. If the gentlemen of the robe will give it under their hands that this is a Parliament, I will agree; (the crown, I believe, is worthily placed) but if I am not satisfied in my conscience and judgment that this is a parliament, I must be excused for my negative. To have every body well satisfied, your best way is to fasten the king by a legal parliament. Before you leave the chair, put a question to establish the Revenue; and that the king may have power to charge it for present emergency, sit and prepare matters for another parlia
Sir Wm. Williams. It is strange we should be here a_month, and now question whether we are a Parliament. If we are called by all the power of England a Parliament, then certainly we are so. Taking it for granted that you could not have such a writ as is usual, can you be better called? I am sorry there should now be such a debate. If you say you are no parliament, you immediately pass judgment against yourselves; you make yourselves the greatest fools, and something else, and act like children; you have acted without call, and all you have done is void. It will be a strange question upon your books.
Sir George Treby. The main thing that sticks with this gentleman, Godolphin, is the authority of his borough, and Sawyer had his authority by last night's post. If Godolphin will let me read that part of his Return he has not, if it imports he is a member of parliament, he is one, though possibly, he was not so sen
Sir Henry Capel. I would encourage and assist this king that desires to live with parlia-sible of it before. [He reads the words in ments. Leave him not alone six weeks, but English, translated, in the Return.] Here is let it not be upon your books that there is any the plainest authority to chuse the member by question upon this matter. the Letter, and all authority contained in the Return that can be, and I hope this gentleman will now concur.
Mr. Pollerfen. I can say no more than what has been mentioned. That nothing may appear on your books on this occasion, put the question for the Speaker to take the chair.
Sir Christ. Musgrave. I think you cannot put the question for the chair. If you consult the order, it is about nothing of the Bill from the lords, but only to consider the king's Speech. That is all I have to say at present.
Mr. Boscawen. I agree, we can take no notice of the lords Bill at the committee; you are only to consider the king's Speech, and I desire to-morrow you will go upon it. And when the Speaker is in the chair, you may call for the lords Bill.
Sir Tho. Lee. Many without doors discourse so much of difference in opinion here in this matter, that I would therefore have the question on the books.
Sir George Treby. I am fully satisfied that you are a Parliament. For the honour of the house, declare you are a parliament; though not for the honour of those that opposed it, yet for yours. If you consider the prince's advice, in his Letter, he described a parliament; whoever denies us to be a parliament, denies there is either king, or lords, and commons. Declare yourselves one, and you will do yourselves right, and defeat the designs of your enemies.
Mr. Godolphin. I am sorry to differ from several in this great assembly. I have heard it said, If this be not a parliament originally, we cannot make ourselves one.' I believe those who sent me hither, have given me no such authority. I believe we are well chosen, but only for a particular purpose; which purpose we have accomplished. I am afraid, if gentlemen look into the Returns by which they sit, they will find they have no such form as the old Returns, [and reads his own Return] which is thus, according to the annexed Or
Sir Robert Howard. One thing has been omitted; we are all for a Parliament, and yet speak against it. All would have us be doing with Money. And if Godolphin's borough sent him to treat about Money, and we are not a Parliament, he has the largest commission I ever heard of.
The Convention voted a Parliament.*] Resolved, "That it is the opinion of this com
"The commons agreeing to the Bill, it received the royal assent, and the Convention was from that time called the Parliament. This Act was to commence from the 13th of Feb. the day on which the royal dignity was accepted by the king and queen, and instead of the old Oaths of Allegiance and Supremacy, the new oaths were enjoined to be taken by all the members of each house, from, and after the 1st of March next ensuing. Accordingly, a day was set for the call of both houses, and for requiring the members to take the oaths. Upon the passing this Act, several members who had before protested, that they would neither submit to the decisions of such a parliament, nor sit in it, absented themselves, and retired into the country on frivolous pretences. And when the time came for the members to take the oaths, though they were refused by few or none of the commons, several lords, both spiritual and temporal, would not take them. As the duke of Newcastle, the earls of Clarendon, Lichfield, Exeter, Yarmouth, and Stafford, and the lords Griffin, Stawel, and one or two more: these were all, at several times, summoned to attend the house, but most of them continued absent. The spiritual lords that absented themselves were Sancroft abp. of Canterbury, Turner bishop of Ely, Lake of Chichester, Ken of Bath and Wells, White of