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fiscations to which the Catholics by law were liable, should be levied with the utmost severity. The king, who was then at Newmarket, hearing of the intended remonstrance, wrote a letter to the speaker, in which he sharply rebuked the house for debating on matters far above their reach and capacity; and strictly forbad them to meddle with anything that regarded his government or deep matters of state, and especially not to touch on his son's marriage with the Spanish princess. Upon this the commons framed a new remonstrance, in which they asserted their right of debating on all matters of government, and that they possessed entire freedom of speech in their debates. The king replied, that their remonstrance was more like a denunciation of war, than an address of dutiful subjects; and their pretension to enquire into all state affairs, without exception, was such a plenipotence as none of their predecessors, even during the reigns of the weakest princes, had ever pretended to; that public transactions depended on a complication of views and intelligence, with which they were entirely unacquainted; that they could not show their wisdom better, as well as duty, than by keeping within their proper sphere; and that in any business which depended on his prerogative, they had no title to interpose with their advice, unless when he pleased to ask it, &c. In return, the commons framed the protestation already mentioned, which the king tore out of their journals, and soon after dissolved the parliament. The leading members of the house, Sir Edward Coke and Sir Robert Phillips, were now committed to the tower: three others, Selden, Pym, and Mallory, to other prisons; and some others, as a lighter punishment, were sent on business into i. Sir John Saville, however, a powerful man in the house of commons, and a zealous opposer of the court, was made the comptroller of the household, a privy counsellor, and soon after a baron. This event is memorable, being the first instance of an English king advancing a man on account of his parliamentary interest. But in vain did James, by reiterated proclamations, forbid his subjects to discuss the public affairs and measures. His proclamations served rather to inflame the curiosity of the public. In every company and society the late transactions became the subject of argument and debate. For five years James continued the dupe of the court of Spain. At last he resolved, if possible, to remove every obstacle to the Spanish alliance. He issued orders for discharging all popish recusants who were imprisoned ; and it was daily apprehended, that he would forbid, for the future, the execution of the penal laws against them : apologising for this conduct, by pretending that it would procure from foreign rinces a toleration for Protestants. At any rate it forwarded, for a while, James's end with regard to the marriage. The earl of Bristol, ambassador at the court of Spain, being fully convinced of the Spanish sincerity, wrote him word that the Spanish princess was to bring with her a fortune of £600,000; and that he considered this match as an infallible prelude to the palatine's
restoration. Nothing was now therefore wanting but a dispensation from Rome; and the duke of Buckingham, a new favorite at court, persuaded the prince to undertake a journey to Madrid. They travelled through France in disguise; and, under the assumed names of John and Thomas Smith, were introduced at the French court, where Charles first saw his future wife Henrietta. On their arrival at Madrid, every body was surrised by a step so little usual among princes. he Spanish monarch, however, expressed the utmost gratification at the visit; gave the prince a golden key which opened all his apartments, that he might, without introduction, have access to him at all hours; ordered his prime minister, Olivarez, never to be covered in his presence; and proclaimed a general gaol delivery as an expression of the public joy. The infanta, however, was only seen by her lover in public; and the pope, hearing of Charles's arrival, tacked some new clauses to the dispensation, which it became necessary to transmit to London. The treaty which was made public, chiefly regarded the exercise of the Catholic religion by the infanta; and stipulated that the children of the marriage should be educated by the princess till they were ten years of age. There were also some private articles sworn to by James, which could not have been made public without violent murmurs. A suspension of the penal laws against the English Catholics was promised, as likewise a repeal of them in parliament, and a toleration for the exercise of that religion in private. Meanwhile, pope Gregory XV., who granted the dispensation, died; and Urban VIII, succeeded him. Upon this event, the nuncio refused to deliver the dispensation till it should be renewed by Urban. This the pontiff delayed, in hopes that, during the prince's residence in Spain, some method might be found of effecting his conversion. But the king of England, as well as the prince, had become impatient at the delay: Charles obtained leave to return; and Philip graced his departure with all the circumstances of civility and respect which had attended his arrival. Buckingham, however, before their departure from Madrid, is said to have decided the prince's mind against the match. On their arrival in London, therefore, the former assumed the entire direction of the negociation; and made it his business to seek pretences for a breach of treaty. At last, after many artifiées to delay or prevent the espousals, Bristol received positive orders not to deliver the proxy which had been left in his hands, till security was given for the full restitution of the palatinate. Philip understood this language: but, being determined to throw the whole blame of the rupture on the English, he delivered into Bristol's hand a written promise, by which he bound himself to procure the restoration of the palatinate, either by persuasion or by every other possible means ; and, when he found that this concession gave no satisfaction. he ordered the infanta to lay aside the title of Princess of Wales, which she bore after the arrival of the dispensation from Rome, and to drop the study of the English language. As he knew that the counsels, which now governed the court of England, would not stop at the breach of the marriage treaty, he also immediately ordered preparations for war. A more successful match for prince Charles was soon after negociated with Henrietta, daughter of Henry IV.; the king of France demanding only the same terms that had been offered to the court of Spain. In an article of this treaty of marriage, it was, however, stipulated, that the education of the children till the age of thirteen should belong to the princess; a concession which gave ultimately to the house of Stuart that unfortunate bias towards popery, which afterwards proved their ruin.
James, being now deprived of every other hope of relieving his son-in-law but by force of arms, declared war against Spain and the emperor, for the recovery of the palatinate : 6000 men were sent over into Holland to assist prince Maurice against those powers; the people were every where elated at the courage of their king, and were satisfied with any war which was to exterminate the papists. This army was followed by another consisting of 12,000 men, commanded by count Mansfeldt; and the court of France promised its assistance. But the English were disappointed in all their views: the troops, being embarked at Dover, upon sailing to Calais, found no orders for their admission. They were obliged, after waiting for some time, to sail towards Zealand, where no proper measures were yet consulted for their disembarkation; and, meanwhile, a pestilential disorder crept in among them, of which half the army died. Whether this failure of his most cherished plans had any effect on the king's constitution, is uncertain; but he was soon after seized with a tertian ague, which put an end to his life on the 27th of March, 1625, after having lived fifty-nine years, and reigned over England twenty-two.
James was succeeded by his son Charles I., who was exceedingly popular with his subjects, for breaking off the match with the Spanish princess, and procuring the rupture with the house of Austria. Young and inexperienced, he regarded these praises as sincere; and was so impatient, therefore, to assemble the great council of the nation, that he would gladly, for the sake of despatch, have called together the same parliament which sat under his father. But, being told that such a measure was unusual, he issued writs for summoning a new parliament on the 7th of May; and it was not without regret that the arrival of the princess Henrietta, >vhom be had espoused by proxy, obliged him to delay, by repeated prorogations, their meeting till the 18th of June. Charles inherited his father's great pecuniary necessities, his high notions of the royal prerogative, and a violent attachment to episcopacy. At his accession, believing his subjects to be in perfect friendship with him, he resolved that their bounty should be entirely unasked, and the entire effect of mutual confidence. Accordingly, his first speech to the parliament was full of simplicity and cordiality. He lightly mentioned the occasion he had for supply. He employed no intrigue to influence the suffrages of the members. He would not even allow the officers of the crown, who had seats in the house, to mention any particular sum
which he had occasion for; but trusted entirely to the wisdom and affection of his parliament, 'who perfectly well knew his circumstances.' The return made by the commons was by no means suitable to this generous behaviour. "They knew that all the money granted by the last parliament had been spent on military and naval preparations; and that great anticipations were likewise made of the revenues of the crown. They were not ignorant that Charles was loaded with a debt contracted by his father, who had borrowed money both from foreign princes and from his own subjects. They were sensible that the war was the result of their own importunate intreaties, and that they had solemnly engaged to support their sovereign in carrying it on. Nor were they unacquainted with the difficulty of military enterprises directed against the whole house of Austria; against the king of Spain, the richest prince in Europe; and against the emperor Ferdinand, hitherto the most fortunate monarch of the age. But, to answer all these important ends, they thought proper only to confer on the king a supply of £112,000. When Charles, with great moderation, represented, in the most explicit manner, the necessity there was for a larger supply, urging, among other pleas, that, if he now met with kind and dutiful usage, it would endear him to the use of parliaments, and for ever preserve an entire harmony between him and his people, the commons remained inexorable; they even refused the addition of f| ths to the former supply. Instead of this they renewed their complaints against the growth of popery; demanding a strict execution of the penal laws against the Catholics; remonstrated against some late pardons granted to priests; and attacked Montague, one of the king's chaplains, on account of a book which he had lately composed. Charles gave them a gracious and complaisant answer; but was firmly resolved to abate somewhat of the rigorous laws against that unfortunate party, which his engagements with France absolutely required.
No measure could be more disgustful to his subjects than this resolution. The Puritans had continued to gain ground during the whole reign of James, and now formed the majority of the hous of commons; in consequence of which, petitions were presented to the king for replacing such able clergymen as had been silenced for want of conformity to the ceremonies. They also enacted laws for the strict observance of Sunday. In consequence of this behaviour in Charles's first parliament, it was dissolved on the 12th of August, 1625, and a new one called, February 6th, 1626. During this interval, Char'es had been obliged to borrow from his subjects on privy seals; the advantage of which was but a small compensation for the disgust it occasioned. By means, however, of that supply, and some other expedients, he wa? enabled to equip his fleet, though with difficulty. It was designed against Spain, but performed nothing worth notice, and its bad success increased the clamors against the court. Charles's second parliament adopted the same views with the former. They, however, voted a supply of three subsidies (£168,00 0\ and ftths; but the passing tliis vote into a law was reserved until the end of the session, that they might have an opportunity of forcing the king to make concessions. This harsh conduct was greatly resented by Charles; but he found himself obliged to submit. In the mean time they attacked the duke of Buckingham, who was become generally obnoxious; and was impeached by the earl of Bristol, on account of his conduct with respect to the Spanish negociation. The earl's impeachment, however, was entirely overlooked, and the commons were able to prove nothing otherwise of any consequence against him. The king, imagining that Buckingham's greatest crime was the having been so much in favor with his sovereign, commanded the house expressly not to meddle with his minister, but to finish, in a few days, the bill they had begun for the subsidies; otherwise they must expect to sit no longer. Suggestions of this kind had a bad effect; and, when the king proceeded further to throw into prison two members of the house who had managed the impeachment against Buckingham, the commons declared that they would proceed no farther till they had satisfaction in their privileges. Charles alleged, as the reason of this measure, certain seditious expressions, which, he said, had, in their accusation of the duke, dropped from these members. Upon enquiry it appeared that no such expressions had been used, and the members were released. Soon after, the house of lords, moved by the example of the commons, claimed liberty for the earl of Arundel, who had been lately confined in the tower, and, after many fruitless evasions, the king was obliged, however ungraciously, to comply. The next attack made by the commons, had it succeeded, would have reduced the king to an absolute dependence on parliament. They were preparing a remonstrance against the levying of tonnage and poundage. This article, together with the new impositions laid on merchandise by James, constituted nearly one-half of the crown revenues; and, after having gained this point, they were to petition, or rather to have commanded the king to remove Buckingham from his presence and councils. The king, however, being alarmed at the yoke they were preparing for him, dissolved this second parliament, June 15th, 1626.
Charles, having now made such a breach with his parliament as there was no hope of repairing, was obliged to exercise every branch of his prerogative to supply himself with money. A commission was granted to compound with the Catholics, and agree for dispensing with the penal laws. By this expedient the king, indeed, filled his coffers, but gave general disgust. From the nobility he desired assistance; from the city he required a loan of £100,000. The former contributed slowly: but the latter, after many excuses, gave, at last, a flat denial. To equip a fleet, a distribution, by order of the council, was made to all the maritime towns, and each of them was required, with the assistance of the adjacent counties, to arm so many vessels. London was rated at twenty ships; and this is the first appearance, in Charles's reign, of shipmoney ; a taxation which had once been imposed
by Elizabeth, but which, when carried some steps farther by Charles, produced the most violent discontents. These methods of supply were carried on with some moderation, till news arrived of the king of Denmark being totally defeated by count Tilly the imperial general; but, supplies having then become more than ever necessary, it was suggested in council, that the most equal and convenient method of obtaining them was by a general loan from the subject, according as every man was assessed in the rolls of the last subsidy. That precise sum was required which each would have paid, had the vote of four subsidies been passed into a law: care, however, was taken that the sums thus exacted were not to be called subsidies but loans. Many throughout England now refused these loans, and some were even active in encouraging their neighbours to insist upon their common rights and privileges. By warrant of the council, these were thrown into prison. Most of them patiently submitted to confinement, or applied by petition to the king, who commonly released them. Five gentlemen, however, Sir Thomas Darnel, Sir John Corbet, Sir Walter Earl, Sir John Haveningham, and Sir Edward Hampden, demanded release, not as a favor from the court, but as their due by the laws of their country. No particular cause was assigned for their commitment. The special command of the king and council was alone pleaded. And it was alleged that, by law, this was not sufficient reason for refusing bail or releasement to the prisoners. The question was brought to a solemn trial before the court of king's bench; and the whole kingdom was attentive to the issue. By the debates on this subject it appeared, that personal liberty had been secured by no less than six different statutes, and by an article in magna charta itself. It appeared, that, in times of turbulence and sedition, the kings had infringed these laws; and of this also many examples were produced. The difficulty then lay to determine when such violent measures were necessary; but of that the court pretended to be the supreme judge. As it was legal, therefore, that these five gentlemen should plead the statute, by which they might demand bail, so it was expedient in the court to remand them to prison, without determining on the necessity of taking bail for the present. This was a cruel evasion of justice, and, in fact, satisfied neither party. The court insisted that no bail could be taken; the country exclaimed that the prisoners ought to be set free.
While the king was thus embroiled at home, he rashly engaged in a war with France, a kingdom with which he had but lately formed the most natural alliance. Historians generally agree that this war proceeded from the rivalship of the duke of Buckingham and cardinal Richelieu; both of whom aspired at the affections of the queen of France. However this may be, war was declared against France; and Charles was taught to hope, that hostilities with that kingdom would be the surest means of procuring tranquillity at home. The success of this war was proportionable to the wisdom with which it was commenced. Buckingham was appointed commander; and, being entirely unacquainted both with the sea and land service, he managed to lose two-thirds of his army, and returned in total discredit both as an admiral and general. The discontents in England now rose to such a height, that there was reason to apprehend an insurrection. Charles was also reduced to the greatest distress for want of money. That which he had levied by virtue of his prerogative came in very slowly, and it was dangerous to renew the experiment, on account of the ill-humor of the nation. A third parliament was therefore called, March 17th, 1G28; whom Charles told, at the beginning of the session, that' if they should not do their duties, in contributing to the necessities of the state, he must, in discharge of his conscience, use those other means which God had put into his hands, in order to save that which the follies of some particular men might otherwise put in danger.' They began with voting against arbitrary imprisonments and forced loans; after which five subsidies (£280,000) were voted to the king; a sum with which Charles, though much inferior to his wants, declared himself well satisfied. The commons, however, resolved not to pass this vote into a law, before they had obtained from the king a sufficient security, that their liberties should be no longer violated. They resolved upon a petition of right, in which they recapitulated all the unlawful exertions of the prerogative. The chief grievances complained of were forced loans, benevolences, taxes without consent of parliament, arbitrary imprisonments, billeting soldiers, and martial law. They pretended not to any unusual power or privileges; nor did they intend to infringe the royal prerogative, they said, in any respect: they aimed only at securing those rights and privileges derived from their ancestors. But the king now began plainly to aim at nothing less than absolute power. This petition he did his utmost to evade, by repeated messages to the house, in which he always offered his royal word, that there should be no more infringements of the liberty of the subject. These messages, however, had no effect on the commons: they knew how insufficient such promises were, without further security. The petition, therefore, at last passed both houses, as embodying the law of those questions, and nothing was wanting but the royal assent to give it legal force. The king accordingly came to the house of peers, sent for the commons, and, being seated in the chair of state, the petition was read to him. In answer to it, he said, 'The king willeth that right be done according to the laws and customs of the realm, and that the statutes be put into execution; that his subjects may have no cause to complain of any wrong or oppression contrary to their just rights and liberties, to the preservation whereof he holds himself in conscience as much obliged as of his own prerogative.' This equivocal answer was highly resented by the commons. They first directed their indignation against a Dr. Manwaring, who had preached a sermon, and at the special command of the king, which was found to contain doctrines subversive of civil liberty. It taught, that though property
was commonly lodged in the subject, yet, whenever any exigency required supply, all property was transferred to the sovereign; that the consent of parliament was not necessary for the imposition of taxes; and that the divine laws required compliance with every demand, however irregular, which the prince should make upon his subjects. For these doctrines Manwaring was sentenced to be imprisoned during the pleasure of the house; to be fined £1000 to the king: make submission and acknowledgement for his offence; be suspended three years; be iucapable of holding any ecclesiastical dignity or secular office; and that his book be called in and burnt. No sooner, however, was the session ended, than Manwaring received a pardon, and was promoted to a living of considerable value. Some years afterwards he was advanced to the see of St. Asaph. At last, the king, seeing it was impossible to carry his point, yielded to the importunities of parliament. He came to the house of peers, and pronouncing the usual form of words, ' Let it be law as is desired,' gave full sanction and authority to the petition. The house resounded with acclamations, and the bill for five subsidies was immediately passed.
The commons, however, were not yet satisfied; they began to attack the duke of Buckingham, against whom they were implacable; they also asserted, that the levying of tonnage and poundage without consent of parliament was a palpable violation of the ancient liberties of the people, and an open infringement of the petition of right so lately granted. The king, to prevent a remonstrance on that subject, suddenly prorogued the parliament, June 26th, 1628.
The commons were soon delivered from their enemy Buckingham; who was murdered on the 23d of August following, by one Felton who had formerly served under him. The king did not appear much concerned at his death, but retained an affection for his family. He desired also that Felton might be tortured, in order to extort from him a discovery of his accomplices; but the judges very properly declared, that, though that practice had been once common, it was altogether illegal. In 1629 the contentions between the king and his parliament were renewed. The great article on which the commons broke with their sovereign, and which finally created in him a disgust at all parliaments, was their claim with regard to tonnage and poundage. The dispute was, whether this tax could be levied without consent of parliament or not. Charles, supported by multitudes of precedents, maintained that it might; and the parliament, in consequence of their petition of right, asserted that it could not, and were resolved to support their rights. They began with summoning before them the officers of the custom-house, to give an account by what authority they had seized the goods of those merchants, who had refused to pay the duties The barons of exchequer were questioned with regard to their decrees on that, head; and the sheriff of London was committed to the Tower for supporting the officers of the custom-house The goods of Rolles, a merchant, and member of the house, being seized for his refusal to pay the duties, complaints were made of this violence, as a flagrant breach of privilege. Charles, on the other hand, supported his officers; and the quarrel between him and the commons became every day more virulent. Sir John Elliot framed a remonstrance against tonnage and poundage, which he offered to the clerk to read; but it was refused, and he then read it himself. The question being called for, the speaker Sir John Finch said, that he had a command from the king to adjourn, and to put no question; upon which he rose and left the chair. The whole house was in an uproar; the speaker was pushed back into the chair, and forcibly held in it, till a short remonstrance was formed, which was instantaneously passed by acclamation. Religious feelings and controversies also mingled with all this. Papists and Armenians were declared capital enemies to the commonwealth, and those who levied tonnage and poundage were branded with the same epithet. Even the merchants, who should voluntarily pay these duties, were called betrayers of English liberty, and public enemies. The doors being locked, the gentleman usher of the house of lords, who was sent by the king, could get no admittance till this remonstrance was finished. By the king's order he took the mace from the table, which put an end to their proceedings, and on the 10th of March the parliament was dissolved, and some of the members imprisoned.
Charles, being now disgusted with parliaments, firmly resolved to call no more; but, finding himself destitute of resources, was obliged to make peace with the two powers with whom he was at war. A treaty was signed with France on the 14th of April, and another with Spain on the 5th of November, 1630. As if, however, resolved on his own ruin, and to lose the small degree of affection towards him which remained among his subjects, Charles now began to make innovations in religion. Archbishop Laud had obtained a prodigious ascendancy over him; and, by his superstitious attachment to foolish ceremonies, led him into a conduct that proved fatal to himself and to the kingdom. He chose this time, of all others the most inauspicious, for attempting to renew the ceremonies of the fourth and fifth centuries, and so openly were many of the Popish tenets espoused, that not only the Puritans believed the church of England to be relapsing fast into that superstition, but the court of Rome itself entertained hopes of regaining its authority. Laud was actually offered, it is said, a cardinal's hat. See Laud. He exacted the old and superstitious veneration for tbe sacerdotal character, and implicit submission to the creeds and decrees of synods and councils; and enjoined great pomp and ceremony in worship. Orders were given, that the communion table should be removed from the middle of the area, where it had hitherto stood in all churches except cathedrals, to the east end; and that it should be railed in, and denominated an altar. All kinds of ornaments, especially pictures, were introduced. The crucifix, too, was not omitted. In return for Charles's favor, Laud and his followers took care to magnify on every occasion the regal authority, and to treat with the utmost
disdain all puritanical pretensions to civil and religious liberty. In the star chamber and high commission both the church and king found a ready instrument to suppress the rising spirit of liberty. Tonnage and poundage wer£ continued to be levied by royal authority alone. The former arbitrary impositions were still exacted, and new impositions laid upon different kinds of merchandise. The custom-house officers received orders from the council to enter into any house, warehouse, or cellar; to search any trunk or chest; and to break any bulk whatever, in default of the payment of customs. In order to exercise the militia, each county by an edict of the council was assessed in a certain sum for maintaining a muster-master appointed for that service. Compositions* were now again openly made with rescusants, and the Popish religion afforded a regular branch of revenue. A commission was also granted for compounding with such as possessed crown lands on defective titles; and on this pretence considerable sums of money were exacted of the people.
While the English were thus driven to the utmost discontent, and almost ready to break out into rebellion, Charles thought proper to attempt the establishment of episcopacy in Scotland. The canons for erecting a new ecclesiastical jurisdiction were promulgated in 1635, and received without much outward opposition; but when the first reading of the liturgy was attempted in the cathedral church of St. Giles, Edinburgh,in 1637, suchatumult was produced, that it was not thought safe to repeat the experiment. A universal combination against the religious innovations began immediately to take place; and to the proclamation of Charles, the nobility, gentry, and ministers, opposed the celebrated production of the Covenant. This consisted of a renunciation of Popery, formerly signed by James in his youth, and filled with many virulent invectives against that party. A bond of union followed, by which the subscribers obliged themselves to resist all religious innovations, and to defend each other against aU opposition. It was subscribed by people of all ranks and conditions. The king now began to be alarmed. He sent the marquis of Hamilton, as commissioner, to treat with the covenanters; and he required that obligation to be renounced and recalled. In answer to this demand the covenanters told him,they would sooner renounce their baptism! and invited the commissioner himself to sign it. Hamilton returned to London; made another fruitless journey with new concessions to Edinburgh; returned again to London, and was immediately sent back with still greater concessions. The king was now willing to abolish entirely the canons, the liturgy, and the high commission court; he even resolved to limit extremely the power of the bishops, and was content if. on any terms he could retain that order in the church of Scotland. To ensure all these gracious offers, he gave Hamilton au thority to summon first an assembly, and th»i> ^ parliament, where every grievance should be redressed. The offer of an assembly and a parliament, in which they expected to be entirely masters, was very willingly embraced by the