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vour of the long-parliament, for what might be wicked in him, might be just as to them: And though, if what he did, had been for the restoration of his majesty, he might have been excused, yet, being for his own single advancement, it is unpardonable, and leaves him a person to be truly admired for nothing but apostasy and ambition, and exceeding Tiberius in dissimulation. I am not ignorant that some think it matter of praise in him, that he kept us in peace, four years and nine months; but that hath little in it, his majesty having done the like, almost double his time, since his re. turn, with one fifth part of that number of soldiers which he commanded; though he hath also had the trouble of pressing, and sometimes forcing uniformity in religion, which he found under several forms; whereas Oliver kept the nation purposely divided in opinions, and himself of no declared judgment, as the securest way of engaging all several persuasions equally to him; which artifice, together with his leaving the church lands alienated as he found them, were all the true principles of polity that I know of, which he kept unto.
The honesty of these principles I refer to the judgment of every man's conscience, but, if we may judge of things by experience and success, they seem to have been very happy in the world: For, in comparing the condition of the protestant countries at present, to what they were in times of Popery, we shall find them more con. siderable now than formerly; for, in taking a true survey of the reformed dominions, we shall discover them to bear no proportion at all, in largeness, to the Popish*; and that there is nothing that keeps the balance betwixt the two parties, but the advantage that the first hath, in being free from the bondage of the church of Rome, and the latter's being under it: For, as the church of Rome's mercies are (by their principles) cruelties +, so, had they power answerable to the natural richness of the soil of their coun. tries, and extent of their territories, they would long before this have swallowed up the protestant churches, and made bonfires of their members; but, as God, in his mercy and wisdom, hath, by his over-ruling hand of providence, preserved his church; so, for the Romish church's inability to effect that which they have will and malice enough to carry them on to do, there are these natural reasons:
First, There being generally, of the Popish countries, abore one moiety belonging to churchmen, Monks, Friars, and Nuns, who, like drones, spend the fat of the land, without contributing any thing to the good of mankind, renders them much the less con siderable.
Secondly, Marriage being forbidden to all these sorts and orders, occasions great want of people every where, they being uncapable of any children but those of darkness , except in France, which is an extraordinary case, proceeding partly, by not being su sub
See page 41, &c.
Sec page 36, &c.
ject to Rome, as other countries of that belief are; from the multitude of protestants, 'that are among them.
Thirdly, The blind devotion of these people, carrying them on to vast expences, in the building and richly adorning of many need. less and superfluous churches, chapels, and crosses, &c. with the making chargeable presents by the better, and pilgrimages by the in eaner sort, to their idols, keeps all degrees under.
Fourthly, The many holydays, upon which, the labouring man is forbidden to work, adds much to their poverty.
But, Fifthly and Lastly, The vast number of Begging Friars, who living idlý, and purely upon the sweat of other men's brows, without taking any labour themselves, make it impossible, for the lower sort of people, who think they are bound, in conscience, to relieve them, ever to get above a mean condition. Now whosoever shall seriously weigh and ponder these circumstances, under which the Popish countries lie, and consider the reformed's advantage in being free from them, must confess it the less wonder, that the Evangelical * princes and states, with their small dominions, compared to the others great are able to bear up against them. And now, as the alienation of church-lands, the turning out the Romish vermin, the Priests, Monks, Friars, and Nups, who devour all countries wherever they come, and freedom from the Popish imposition upon conscience, hath mightily increased the greatness of the Pro. testant princes and states, to what they anciently were, and the not doing the same, in the Popish countries, keeps those princes under; so, even amongst the reformed, where the church-lands are most alienated, and liberty of conscience most given, they prosper most, as in Holland, and some parts of Germany, with other places. And, on the contrary, Denmark, where church-lands are least alienated of any of the reformed countries, and the city of Lubeck, where, of all the free imperial cities of Germany, liberty of conscience is least given, they thrive least in both places. And, I think, it will also hold, that, as this famous kingdom, in the times of Popery, was, in no measure, so formidable as now it is; so before the restoration of our Hierarchy to their lands, their hoarding up the money, which before went in trade, and their discouraging and driving into corners the industrious sort of people, by im posing upon their consciences, it flourished more, was richer, and fuller of trade, than now it is; and I dare undertake to be a prophet in this, That, if ever any protestant country should be so far forsaken of the Lord, as to be suffered to turn unto Popery, these observations will be made good in their visible loss of the splendor, riches, power, and greatness, that they now know.
Had Cromwell been a person of an open prophane life, his actions had been less scandalous; but, having been a professor of re. ligion, they are not to be pleaded for; neither can it be consistent with religion to palliate them, which have been of so much offence,
• Protestant, so called, because they take the word of God for their rule of faith.
and, as may be feared, made so many atheists in the world; and I cannot but stand amazed, when I hear him extolled by some, not ignorant of his practices, knowing in religion, and, as I hope, fearing God.
Now I will suppose, I may be suspected to have been injured, or disobliged by Oliver; but I can with truth affirm, I never received either good or evil from him in all my life, more than in common with the whole kingdom, which I think, may be allowed to render me the more a competent judge in his case; and, that I am so far from being moved unto this, out of any quarrel to him, that, as I have here mentioned some few of many injustices and state-errors, that he was guilty of in his short time, if I were conscious of any thing more, during his protectorship, worthy applause, than I have here mentioned, I should not envy it him, but freely remember it; and, if any think I have not said cnough on his behalf, and too much to his disadvantage, I have this for my buckler, that I wish I could have said more for him, and had knoun less against him; professing, that, besides what I have here hioted, I am wholly ignorant of any one action in all his four years and nine months time, done either wisely, virtuously, or for the interest of this kingdom, and, therefore, that I am none of his admirers, I ought to be pardoned by my readers. Much more might be said upon this subject, but this may
suffice to shew, that, if Mazarin, at the hearing of Oliver's death, thought he had then reason for calling him a fortunate fool, if he were now living he would find more cause for it, Cromwell's lot, as to repua tation, having been exceedingly much greater since his death, than whilst he was in the world: And that from forgetfulness of his ima politick government, from whose entrance we may date the com. mencement of our trade's decay; and, through want of memory, in men's giving to him the cause of our former wealth and prosperity, which truly belongeth to others. But, what opinion soever Ma. zarin may have had of Oliver, he was, without all peradventure, a person of more than ordinary wit, and no otherwise a fool than as he wanted honesty, no man being wise but an honest man,
THE NICKER NICKED:
THE CHEATS OF GAMING DISCOVERED.
THE THIRD EDITION.
Felix quem faciunt aliena pericula cautum. Licensed November 4, 1668. Printed in the Year 1669. Quarto,
containing nine Pages.
Leathermore's Advice concerning Gaming.
and avarice; which has this ill property above all other vices, that it renders a man incapable of prosecuting any serious action, and makes him unsatisfied with his own condition; he is either lifted up to the top of mad joy with success, or plunged to the bottom of despair by misfortune; always in extreams, always in a storm.
Hannibal said, of Marcellus, that Nec bonam, nec malam ferre potest, i. e. He could be quiet neither conqueror nor conquered, Thus (such is the itch of play) gamesters neither winning, nor losing, can rest satisfied ; if they win, they think to win more; if they lose, they hope to recover.
One propounded this question, Whether men, in ships at sea, were to be accounted amongst the living or the dead, because there were but few inches betwixt them and drowning? The same query may be made of great gamesters, though their estates be ne. ver so considerable, whether they are to be esteemed poor or rich, since there are but a few casts at dice, betwixt a person of fortune (in that circumstance) and a beggar?
But speculation in this particular will not be convincing, unless we shew somewhat of the molern practice; we must thereiore lay our scene at the ordinary, and proceed to our action.
Betwixt twelve and one of the clock, a good dinner is prepared by way of ordinary, and some gentlemen of civility and condition oftentimes eat there, and play a while for recreation after dinner, both moderately, and most commonly without deserving reproof.
Towards night, when ravenous beasts usually seek their prey, there come in shoals of hectors, trepanners, gilts, pads, biters, prigs, divers, listers, kidnappers, vouchers, mill-kens, pyemen, decoys, shop-lifters, foilers, bulkers, droppers, gamblers, donija. kers, crossbiters, &c. under the general appellation of rooks; and in this particular it serves as a nursery for Tyburn, for every year
See a letter from a minister to his friend, concerning the game of Chess, Vol. VIII. p. 361. VOL. VII.
some of this gang march thither ! One Millard was hanged in April 1664, for burglary; and others since.
When a young gentleman or apprentice comes into this school of virtue, unskilled in the quibbles and devices there practised, they call him a lamb; then a rook (who is properly the wolf) fol. Jows him close, and engages him in advantageous bets, and at length worries him, that is, gets all his money, and then they smile and say, “The lamb is bitten.'
Of these rooks some will be very importunate to borrow money of you, without any intention of repaying, or to go with you seven to twelve, half a crowd, and take it ill if they are refused; others watch, if, when you are serious at game, your sword hang loose behind, and lift that away; others will not scruple, if they espy an opportunity, directly to pick your pocket; yet, if all fail, some will nim off the gold buttons of your cloke, or steal the cloke it. self, if it lie loose; others will throw at a sum of money with a dry
fist, as they call it, that is, if they nick you, it is theirs; if they - lose, they owe you so much, with many other quillets; or, if you
chance to nick them, it is odds they wait your coming out at night, and beat you, as one Cock was served in June, 1664.
Blaspheming, drunkenness, and swearing are here so familiar, that civility is, by the rule of contrarieties, accounted a vice. I do not mean swearing, when there is occasion to attest a truth, but upon no occasion; as, 'God damn me, how dost?' “What a clock is it, by God?' &c. Then, before two hours are at an end. some one who has been heated with wine, or made cholerick with loss of his money, raises a quarrel, swords are drawn, and perhaps the boxes and candlesticks thrown at one another; and all the house in a garboil, forming a perfect type of hell.
Would you imagine it to be true? That a grave gentleman, well stricken in years, insomuch as he cannot see the pips of the dice, is so infatuated with this witchery, as to play here with others eyes, of whom this quibble was raised, That Mr.
such a onc plays at dice by the ear. Another gentleman, stark blind, 1 bave seen play at hazard, and sure that must be by the ear too.
Late at night, when the company grows thin, and your eyes dim with watching, false dice are often put upon the ignorant, or they are otherwise cosened with topping, or slurring, &c. And, if you be Rot vigilant, the box-keeper shall score you up double or treble boxes, and, though you have lost your money, dun you as severely for it, as if it were the justest debt in the world.
There are yet some genteeler and more subtle rooks, whom you shall not distinguish by their outward demeanor from persons of condition; and who will sit by, a whole evening, and observe who wins; and then, if the winner be bubbleable, they will insinuate themselves into his acquaintance, and civilly invite him to drink a glass of wine; wheedle him into play, and win all his money, either by false dice, as, high fullams, low fullams, 5, 4, 2, s. &c Or by palming, topping, knapping, or slurring; or, in case he be past that classis of ignoramusses, then by crossbiting, or some