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11. These lessen not, but increase both bullion and coin, where they are used; for what monarch can spare such sums as little Genoa lends to the king of Spain, that great master and mer. chant of gold and silver ? And what people generally fuller of money, and freer from beggars than the Dutch, by these proposed courses ?
If all, or any of these, be thought worthy debating, the pro. poser is confident he can answer all objections, and shew the way how there shall not be any danger of cheat or abuse in any part thereof.
THE HUMBLE PETITION AND ADDRESS OF
EDWARD, EARL OF CLARENDON. MS.
To the Right Honourable the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, in
express the insupportable trouble and grief of mind I sustain, under the apprehension of being misrepresented unto your lordships ; and when I hear how much of your lordships time hath been spent in the mention of me, and is attended with more publick consequence; and of the difference of opinion, which is already, or may probably arise, betwixt your lordships and the honourable house of commons, whereby the great and weighty affairs of the kingdom may be obstructed, in a time of so general dissatisfaction: I am very unfortunate to find myself suffer so much, under two very disadvantageous reflexions, which are in no degree applicable to me.
The first, from the greatness of my estate and fortune, collected and made in so few years; which, if it be proportionable to what it is reported, may very reasonably cause my integrity to be sus. pected. The sccond, that I have been the sole manager, and chief minister, in all the transactions of state, since the king's return. into England, to August last; and, therefore, that all miscarriages and misfortunes ought to be imputed to me, and to my counsels. Concerning my estate, your lordships will believe, that, after malice and envy' have been so inquisitive and so sharp-sighted, I will not offer any thing to your lordships, but what is really true ;. and I do assure your lordships, in the first place, that, excepting from the king's bounty, I have never received, nor taken one penny, but what was generally understood to be the just and law. ful perquisite of my office, by the constant practice of the best times; which I did, in my own judgnient, conceive to be that of my Lords Coventry and Elsmore; the practice of which I con-. stantly observed, although the office, in both their times, was law. fully worth double to what it was to me; and, I believe, now is :
That all the courtesies and favours, which I have been able to obe tain from the king for other persons, in church, state, or Westá minster-hall, have never been worth, to me, five pounds ; so that your lordships may be confident, I am as innocent from corruption, as from any disloyal thought; which, after thirty years service of the crown, in some difficulties and distress, I did never suspect would have been objected to me, in my age. And I do
your lordships, and shall make it manifest, that the sereral sums of money and some parcels of land, which his majesty hath bountifully bestowed upon me, since his last return into England, are worth more, than all I have amounts unto. So far I am from advancing my estate by indirect means; and, though this bounty of his majesty hath very far exceeded my merit, or my expecta. tions, yet some others have been as fortunate, at least, in the same bounty, who have had as small pretence to it, and have no great reason to envy my condition.
Concerning the other imputation, of the credit and power of being chief minister, and causing all to be done, that I had any mind to, I have no more to say, than that I had the good fortune to serve a master of very great judgment and understanding, and to be always joined with persons of great abilities and experience, without whose advice and concurrence never any thing hath been done. Before his majesty's coming over, he was constantly at. tended by the Marquis of Ormond, the late Lord Culpepper, and Mr. Secretary Nicholas, who were equally trusted with myself, and without whose joint advice and concurrence, when they were all present (as some of them always were) I never gave any coun. sel. As soon as'it pleased God to restore his majesty into England, he established his privy-council, and shortly, out of them, a number of honourable persons of great reputation, who for the most part are alive still, as a committee for foreign affairs, and consideration of such things, as the number of them required much time and deliberation, and with those persons he vouchsafed to join me; and, I am confident, the committee never transacted any thing of moment (his majesty being always present) without pre. senting the same first to the council-board; and I must appeal to them concerning my carriage, and whether we were not all of one mind, in matters of importance. For more than two years, I never knew any difference in the council, or that there were any complaints in the kingdom; which I wholly impute to his majes. ty's great wisdom, and the intire concurrence of his counsellors, without the vanity of assuming any thing to myself; and, there fore, I hope, I shall not be singly charged with any thing, that has since fallen out amiss : But, from the time that Mr. Secretary Nicholas was removed from his place, there were great alterations ; and whosoever knows any thing of the court, or councils, knows well how much my credit hath since that time been diminished, al. though his majesty still vouchsafed graciously to hear my advice, in most of his affairs. Nor hath there been, from that time to this, above one or two persons brought to the council, or prefer
red to any considerable office in the court, who have been of any intimate acquaintance, or suspected to have any kindness for me; and most of them most notoriously known to have been very long my enemies, and of different judgments and principles from me, both in church and state, and who have taken all opportunities to lessen my credit with the king, and all other persons, by misrepresenting and misinterpreting all that I said, or did, and persuading men, that I had done them some prejudice with his majesty, or crossed them in some of their pretensions, though his majesty's goodness and justice were such, that it made little impression upon him.
In my humble opinion, the great misfortunes of the kingdom, have proceeded from the war, to which, it was most notoriously known, that I was always most averse. And I may, without vanity, say, I did not only foresee, but did declare the mischief, we should run into, by entering into a war before any alliances with neighbouring princes ; and, that it may not be imputed to his majesty's want of care, or the neg'igence of his counsellors, that no sach alliances were entered into, I must say, that his majesty left nothing unattempted, in order thereunto; and knowing very well, that France resolved to begin war upon Spain, as soon as his ca. tholick majesty should depart the world; which being much sooner expected by them, they had, in two winters, been at great charge in providing plentiful magazines of all provisions upon the fron. tiers, that they might be ready for the war. His majesty used all means possible to prepare and dispose the Spaniards with that apprehension, offering his friendship to that degree, as might be for the security and benefit of both crowns. But Spain, flattering it. self, that Francr would not break with them, at least, that they would not give them any cause, by administering matter of jea. lousy, never made any real approach to make friendship with his majesty, but, both by their ambassadors here, and his majesty's ambassador at Madrid, always insisted, as preliminaries, upon the giving up of Dunguirgue, Tangier, and Jamaica.
Though France had an ambassador here, to whom a project for a treaty was offered, and the Lord Hollis, his majesty's ambassador at Paris, had used all endeavours to persuc and prosecute the said treaty; yet it was quickly discerned, the principal design of France was to draw his majesty into such a new alliance, as might advance their design, without which, they had no mind to enter into the treaty proposed ; and this was the state of affairs, when the war was entered into with the Dutch ; from which time, nei. ther crown continued the making an alliance with England. As I did, from my soul, abhor the entering into this war, so I never presumed to give any advice or counsel for the way of managing of it, but by opposing many propositions, which seemed, by the late Lord Treasurer and myself, to be unreasonable, as the payment of seamen with tickets, which added to the expence.
My enemies took all occasions to inveigh against me, and (mak, ing of friendship with others out of the council of more licentious VOL. VII,
principles, and who knew well enough how much I disliked and complained of the liberty they took to themselves, of rallying all council and counsellors, and turning all things, serious and secret, into ridicule) they took all ways imaginable to render me ungrateful to all sorts of men, whom I shall be compelled to name in my own defence, persuading those that miscarried, that it was the Chancellor's doing, whereof I never knew any thing. However, they could not withdraw the king's favour from me, who was still pleased to use my service with others ; nor was there any thing done, but upon the joint advice of, at least, the major part of those who were consulted; and, as his majesty commanded my service in the late treaties, I never gave the least advice in private, or wrote one letter to any person, in those negotiations, but upon the advice of the council, and after it was read in council, or, at least, by the king himself, and some others; and if I prepared any instructions, or memorials, it was by the king's command, and the request of the secretaries, who desired my assistance; nor was it any wish of my own, that any ambassador should give me any account of the transactions, but the secretary, with whom I was al. ways ready to advise ; nor am I conscious to myself, of ever hav. ing given advice, that hath proved mischievous, or inconvenient to his majesty; and I have been so far from being the whole manager, that I have not, in the whole last year, been above twice with his majesty in any room alone, and very seldom in the two or three last years preceding; and, since the parliament at Oxford, it hath been very visible, that my credit hath been very little, and that very few things have been hearkened to, that have been proposed by me, but contradicted eo nomine, because they were proposed by me.. I most humbly beseech your lordships, to remember the office and trust I had for seven years, in which discharge of my duty, I was obliged to stop and obstruct many men's pretensions, and refused to set the scal to many men's pardons, and their grants, which would have been profitable to them, which procured them, and many whereof, upon my representation to his majesty, were for ever stopped ; which naturally hath caused many enemies to me; and my frequently concutring, upon the desires of my late Lord Treasurer (with whom I had the honour to have a long and faithful friendship to his death) in representing several excesses and cxorbitances, the yearly issues so far exceeding the revenue, provoked many persons concerned, of great power and credit, to do me all the ill offices they could; and yet, I may faithfully say,
I never meddled with any part of the revenue, or the administration of it, but when I was desired, by the late Lord Treasurer, to give him my assistance and advice, having had the honour to serve the Crown, as Chancellor of the Exchequer, which was, for the most part, in his majesty's presence; nor have I been, in the least de. gree, concerned, in point of profit, in letting any part of his majesty's revenue, nor have ever treated, or debated it, but in his majesty's presence, in which my opinion concurred always with the major part of the council; all which, upon examination, will be made manifest to your lordships, how much soever my integrity is blasted, by the malice of those, who, I am confident, do not be lieve themselves; nor have I, in all my treaties, otherwise received the value of one shilling, from all the kings and princes in the world, except the book of the Louvre, sent by the Charicellor of France, by the king's direction, but from my own master, to whose intire service, and to the good and welfare of my country, no man's heart was ever more devoted. This being my present condition, I do most humbly beseech your lordships to retain a favourable opinion of me, and believe me to be innocent from those foul aspersions, until the contrary shall be proved, which, I am sure, can never be, by any man worthy to be believed; and since the tem per of the times, and the difference between the two houses, in the present debate, with the power and malice of my enemies, who give out, they shall prevail with his majesty to prorogue, or dissolve the parliament in displeasure (and threaten to expose me. to the rage and fury of the people) may make me to be looked up. on, as the cause which obstructs the king's service, and the unity and pefce of the kingdom : I most humbly beseech your lordships, that I may not forfeit your lordship's favour and protection, by withdrawing myself from so powerful a prosecution, in hopes I may be able, by such withdrawing, hereafter to appear, and make my defence, when his majesty's justice, to which I shall always submit, may not be obstructed, or controuled, by the power and malice of those, who have sworn my destruction.
THE WORLD'S MISTAKE IN
A short Political Discourse, shewing, that Cromwell's Male-administration (dur.
ing his four Years and nine Months pretended Protectorship) laid the foundation of our present condition, in the Decay of Trade.
London : Printed in the year MDCLXVIII.
none, that our corrupt natures are more inclinable unto, than that of idolatry; a sin, that may be towards men, as well as other creatures, and things : for, as that which a man unmeasu. rably relies, and sets his heart upon, is called his God, even as that which he falls down before and worshipeth ; so, when one hath the person of another in an excess of admiration, whether for greatness, or richness,' &c. which we are subject to adore, we are said to idolise - him; and therefore, the wise Venetians; who, of all men, are most jealous of their liberty, considering that, as the nature of man is not prone to any thing more than the adoration of men, so nothing is more destructive to freedom, have, for pre