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The Life of John Milton Vol. 3 1643-1649 by David Masson

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portion was of practical importance, and prepared the way for another
measure (Nov. 16), entitled "An Ordinance for appointing the sale of the
Bishops' lands for the use of the Commonwealth." Then in the Westminster
Assembly there had been such industry over the _Confession of Faith_
that nineteen chapters of it had been presented to the Commons on Sept.
25, a duplicate of the same to the Lords Oct. 1, and so with the residue,
till on Dec. 7 and Dec. 12 the two Houses respectively had the text of
the entire work before them. The Houses had not yet passed the work, or
permitted it to be divulged, but had only ordered a certain number of
copies to be printed for their own use; nay they had, with what seemed an
excess of punctiliousness, required the Assembly to send in their
Scriptural proofs for all the Articles of the Confession; but still, when
Baillie left London, that great business might be considered off the
Assembly's hands. A good deal also had been done in the _Catechisms_
by the Assembly; and, if the Assembly's revised edition of Rous's
_Metrical Version of the Psalms_ had not received full Parliamentary
enactment, that was because the Lords still stood out for Mr. Barton's
competing Version. It was satisfactory to Baillie that, on his return to
Scotland, he could report to his countrymen that so much had been done
for the Presbyterianizing of England. There were, indeed, drawbacks. Both
in London and in Lancashire, where the machinery of Presbytery was
already in operation, the procedure was a little languid; and in other
parts of England, "owing to the sottish negligence of the ministers and
gentry of the shires more than the Parliament," they were wofully slow in
setting up the Elderships and the Presbyteries. Even worse than this was
the unchecked abundance of Sects and Heresies throughout England, and the
prevalence of the poisonous tenet of Toleration. An Ordinance for the
suppression of Blasphemies and Heresies, which had been occupying a Grand
Committee of the Commons through September, October, November, and
December, had not yet emerged into light. These were certainly serious
causes of regret to Baillie, but his mood altogether was one of
thankfulness and hope. "This is the incomparably best people I ever knew
if they were in the hands of any governors of tolerable parts," had been
his verdict on the English in a letter of Dec. 7, when he was preparing
to take leave of them. An Ordinance against Heresies and Blasphemies
would make them perfect, and till that came were there not substitutes?
Had not a number of the orthodox ministers of London put forth a famous
treatise, called _Jus Divinum Regiminis Ecclesiastici_, arguing for
the Divine Right of Presbytery in a manner which left nothing to be
desired? The Second Part of Baillie's own _Dissuasive from the Errors
of the Time_, published just as he was leaving London (Dec. 28, 1646),
and intended as a parting-gift to the English, might also do some good!
And, though he himself was no longer to sit in the Westminster Assembly,
had he not left there his excellent colleagues, Samuel Rutherford and
George Gillespie? [Footnote: Baillie, II. 397-403, 406-7, 410-416, and
III. 1-5; Rushworth, VI. 373-388; Parl. Hist. III. 518; Commons and Lords
Journals of dates given; Neal's Puritans III. 350-51.]


The King's Manner of Life at Holmby--New Omens in his favour from the
Relations of Parliament to its own Army--Proposals to disband the Army
and reconstruct part of it for service in Ireland--Summary of Irish
Affairs since 1641--Army's Anger at the proposal to disband it--View of
the State of the Army: Medley of Religious Opinions in it: Passion for
Toleration: Prevalence of Democratic Tendencies: The Levellers--
Determination of the Presbyterians for the Policy of Disbandment, and
Votes in Parliament to that effect--Resistance of the Army: Petitions and
Remonstrances from the Officers and Men: Regimental Agitators--Cromwell's
Efforts at Accommodation: Fairfax's Order for a General Rendezvous--
Cromwell's Adhesion to the Army--The Rendezvous at Newmarket, and Joyce's
Abduction of the King from Holmby--Westminster Assembly Business: First
Provincial Synod of London: Proceedings for the Purgation of Oxford

Holmby or Holdenby House in Northamptonshire had been built by Lord
Chancellor Hatton in Elizabeth's time, but afterwards purchased by Queen
Anne for her son Charles while he was but Duke of York. It was a stately
mansion, with gardens, very much to the King's taste. It was not till the
16th of February that he arrived there, the journey from Newcastle having
been broken by halts at various places, at each of which crowds had
gathered respectfully to see him, and poor people had begged for his
royal touch to cure them of the king's evil. Near Nottingham he had been
met by General Fairfax, who had dismounted, kissed his hand, and then
turned back, conveying him through that town, and conversing with him.
[Footnote: Rushworth, VI. 398; Whitlocke (ed. 1853), II. 115; Sir Thomas
Herbert's _Memoirs of the last Two Years of the Reign of King Charles
I._.(1813), 13-15. Herbert was a kinsman and _protégé_ of the Pembroke
family, who had travelled much in the East, published an account of his
travels, and had acquired quiet and æsthetic tastes. He had been in
various posts of Parliamentary employment, procured for him by Philip,
Earl of Pembroke; but, having accompanied that Earl when he went to
Newcastle as one of the Commissioners to take charge of the King, he had
attracted the King's regard, so that, on the dismissal of some of the
King's attendants at Holmby, _he_ was selected to be one of the grooms of
the bedchamber. He remained faithfully with the King to his death,
cherished his memory afterwards, was made a baronet by Charles II. after
the Restoration, and died in 1681. Two or three years before his death he
wrote, at a friend's request, the above-mentioned _Memoirs_, containing
interesting reminiscences and anecdotes of Charles in his captivity. They
were reprinted in 1702 and again in 1813 (see a memoir of Herbert in
Wood's Ath. IV. 15-42).]

During the four months of the King's stay at Holmby his mode of life was
very regular and pleasant. The house and its appurtenances, being large,
easily accommodated not only the King and all his permitted servants, but
also the Parliamentary Commissioners and their retinue, besides Messrs.
Marshall and Caryl, Colonel Graves as military commandant, and the under-
officers and soldiers of the guard. The allowance of Parliament for the
King's own expenses was 50_l._ a day, so that "all the tables were
as well furnished as they used to be when his Majesty was in a peaceful
and flourishing state." At meal-times the Commissioners always waited
upon his Majesty, and the two chaplains were generally also present. It
was almost his only complaint that Parliament persisted in keeping these
two reverend gentlemen about him, and would not let him have chaplains of
his own persuasion. But, though he declined the religious services of
Messrs. Marshall and Caryl, and said grace at table himself rather than
ask them to do so, he was civil to them personally, and allowed such of
his servants as chose to attend their sermons. On Sundays Charles kept
himself quite retired to his private devotions and meditations, and on
other days two or three hours were always spent in reading and study.
Among his favourite English books were Bishop Andrewes's Sermons,
Hooker's Ecclesiastical Polity, Herbert's Poems, Fairfax's Tasso,
Harrington's Ariosto, Spenser's Faery Queene, and, above all,
Shakespeare's Plays, his copy of the Second Folio Edition of which is
still in extant, with the words "_Dum spiro spero: C. R._" written
on it by his own hand. But he read also in Greek and Latin, and fluently
in French, Italian, and Spanish. At dinner and supper he ate of but a few
dishes, and drank sparingly of beer, or wine and water mixed by himself.
He disliked tobacco extremely, and was offended by any whiff of it near
his presence. His chief relaxations were playing at chess after meals,
and walking much in the garden; but, not unfrequently, as he was fond of
bowls and there was no good bowling-green at Holmby, he would ride to
Lord Spencer's house at Althorp, about three miles off, or even to Lord
Vaux's at Harrowden, nine miles off, at both of which places there were
excellent bowling-greens and beautiful grounds. In these rides, of
course, he was well attended and watched, but still not so strictly but
that a packet could sometimes be conveyed to him by a seeming country-
bumpkin on a bridge, or a letter in cipher entrusted to a sure hand.
Always through the night at Holmby a light was kept burning in the King's
chamber, in the form of a wax-cake and wick inside a large silver basin
on a low table by the bed, on which also were placed the King's two
watches and the silver bell with which he called his grooms. This custom
had begun at Oxford and had become invariable. [Footnote: Rushworth, VI.
452-4; Parl. Hist. III. 551 and 557-9; Clar. 608; but chiefly Herbert's
Memoirs, 15-25, 61-65, 124-126, and 131. It is remarkable that Herbert,
who mentions the other favourite English books of Charles named in the
text, does not mention Shakespeare; for Charles's copy of the Second
Folio, now in the Royal Library at Windsor, was given to Herbert himself
by Charles before his death, and bears, in addition to the inscription in
Charles's hand, this in Herbert's, "_Ex dono Serenissimi Regis Car.
servo suo humiliss. T. Herbert_" (Lowndes by Bohn, 2,257). Herbert
mentions that _Dum spiro spero_ was a favourite motto with Charles,
inscribed by him on many books. But that Shakespeare was a prime
favourite of Charles we have Milton's authority in the well-known phrase
in the [Greek: Gakonoklastæs]--"one whom we well know was the closet
companion of these his solitudes, William Shakespeare."]

Of course there were continued negotiations between Charles and the
Parliament. Anything done in this way, however, during the four months of
the stay at Holmby, hardly deserves notice. For at that time there was a
huge new clouding of the air in England, pregnant with no one knew what
changes, and making the postponement of conclusions between the King and
the Parliament quite natural on both sides. All the world has heard of
the extraordinary quarrel between the Long Parliament and its own
victorious Army.

The war being over, and the troublesome Scots out of England at last,
what remained but to disband the Parliamentarian Army, and enter on a
period of peace, retrenched expense, and renewed industry? This was what
all the orthodox politicians, and especially all the Presbyterians, were
saying. In the very act of saying it, however, they faltered and
explained. By disbanding they did not mean complete disbanding; some
force must still be kept up in England for garrison duty, as a police
against fresh Royalist attempts; they meant the disbanding of all beyond
the moderate force needed for such use; nay, they did not even then mean
actual disbanding of all the surplus; they contemplated the immediate re-
enlistment and re-organization of a goodly portion of the surplus for
service in another employment. What that was, who needed to be told? Did
there not remain for England a tremendous and long-postponed duty beyond
her own bounds? Now at length, now at length, was there not leisure to
attend to the case of unhappy Ireland?

Unhappy Ireland! Her history at any time is hard to write; but no human
intellect could make a clear story of those five particular years of
triple distractedness which intervene between the murderous Insurrection
of 1641-2 (Vol. II. pp. 308-314) and the beginning of 1647. One can but
note a few points.

Through the first year or more of the Insurrection there seemed to be but
two parties in Ireland. There was the vast party of the Insurgents, or
Confederates, including the whole Roman Catholic population of the
island, both the old Irish natives, who had mainly begun the Rebellion,
and the Catholics of English descent who had joined in it. Gradually the
mere spasmodic atrocity of the first Rebels had been changed into
something like an organized warfare, commanded in chief by Generals
Preston and Owen Roe O'Neile, while the political conduct of the
Rebellion and the government of Confederate Ireland had been provided for
by the assembling at Kilkenny of a Parliament of Roman Catholic lords,
prelates, and deputies from towns and counties, and by the appointment by
that body of county-councils, provincial councils, and a supreme
executive council. The other party in Ireland was the small Protestant
party, consisting of the mixed English and Scottish population of certain
districts of the east and north coasts, with the surviving Protestants
from other parts amongst them, and with Dublin and other strongholds
still in their possession. At their head ought to have been the Earl of
Leicester, Stafford's successor in the Irish Lord-Lieutenancy. But, as
Leicester had been detained in England by the King, the management had
devolved on the Lords Justices and Councillors resident in Dublin, and on
their military assessor, James Butler, 12th Earl of Ormond, who had been
Lieutenant-General of the Irish forces under Strafford. In fact it was
this able Ormond that had to fight the Rebellion. Though supplies and
forces, with some good officers, were sent over from England, and a
special army of Scots under General Monro had been lent to the English
Parliament for service in Ulster, it was still Ormond that had to direct
in chief. His success had been very considerable.

In the course of 1643, however, after the Civil War had begun in England,
Ireland and the Rebellion there had become related in a strangely complex
manner to the struggle between the King and the Parliament. Whatever
share the King may have had, through the Queen, in first exciting the
Roman Catholics, he had come to regard the Irish distraction as a
magazine of chances in his favour. If he could get into his own hands the
command of the Protestant forces employed in putting down the Rebellion,
he would have an army in Ireland ready for his service generally, and the
policy would then be to come to an arrangement with the Roman Catholic
Insurgents, so as to free that army, and perhaps the Insurgents too, for
his service in England. Now, though the Lords Justices and most of the
Councillors in Dublin were Parliamentarian in their sympathies, Ormond
was a Royalist, of a family old in Ireland, far from fanatical in his own
Protestantism, and with many relatives and friends among the Roman
Catholics. Willing enough, therefore, to fight on against the
Confederates, he was yet as willing, on instructions from Oxford, to make
an arrangement with them in the King's interests. Actually, on the 15th
of September, 1643, he did make a year's truce with the Rebels, which
permitted the despatch of some portions of his own force, mixed with
Irish Roman Catholics, to the King's assistance in England. Vehement had
been the outcry of the English Parliamentarians over this breach of the
King's compact with them to leave the conduct of the Irish war wholly to
the Parliament; and from that moment there were two Protestant powers or
trusteeships for the management of the Irish Rebellion. Ormond, made a
Marquis, and raised to the Lord-Lieutenancy in Leicester's place (Jan.
1643-4), was trustee for the King, and continued to rule in Dublin, bound
by his truce. In other parts of Ireland, however, the war was maintained
in the interests of Parliament and by instructions from London--in
Munster by Lord Inchiquin; in Connaught by Sir Charles Coote; and in
Ulster by Monro and his Scots, in conjunction with English officers and
advisers. So the imbroglio had gone on, a mere chaos of mutual sieges and
skirmishes in bogs, and Ireland in fact, through the stress of the Civil
War at home, all but abandoned to herself in the meantime. The
Confederates were stronger after the end of Ormond's year of truce than
they had been before; and in 1645 they were up again against Ormond, as
well as against Inchiquin, Coote, and Monro. They had already received
help from France and Spain, and in Oct. 1645 there arrived among them no
less than a Papal nuncio, Archbishop Rinuccini, with a retinue of other
Italians, to take possession of the tumult in the name of his Holiness,
and regulate it sacerdotally. In this complexity Ormond had still kept
his footing. He had kept it even in the midst of a sudden shock given to
his Vice-royalty by Charles himself.

Without Ormond's knowledge, Charles had been trafficking for months with
the Confederate Irish Catholics through another plenipotentiary. In Jan.
1645-6 it came out, by accident, that the Roman Catholic Earl of
Glamorgan, to whose presence in Ireland for some months no particular
significance had been attached, had been treating, in Charles's name, for
a Peace with the Confederates on the basis not merely of a repeal of all
penal laws against their Religion, but even of its establishment in
Ireland. All Britain and Ireland were aghast at the discovery, and even
Ormond reeled. Recovering himself, however, he did what he could to save
Charles from the results of his own double-dealing. Glamorgan was
imprisoned for a time, with tremendous threats; all publicity was given
to Charles's letters authorizing proceedings against him as "one who
either out of falseness, presumption, or folly, hath so hazarded the
blemishing of his Majesty's reputation with his good subjects, and so
impertinently framed these Articles out of his own head;" and meanwhile
Charles's letters of consolation to Glamorgan, with his thanks, and
promises of "revenge and reparation," remained private.

One consequence of the Glamorgan exposure, happening as it did when the
King had been all but completely beaten in England, was a resolution of
Parliament that Irish affairs should be managed thenceforward not by the
mere Committee for these affairs meeting at Derby House, Westminster, and
communicating with Inchiquin, Coote, and others in Ireland, but by "a
single person of honour," in fact a Parliamentary Lord-Lieutenant. For
this high post there was chosen Philip Sidney, Viscount Lisle, M.P. for
Yarmouth in the Isle of Wight. This was partly a tribute to Lord Lisle's
own zeal and to service he had already rendered in Ireland, partly a
compliment to his father, the Earl of Leicester, whom Charles had
displaced from the Lord-Lieutenancy to make way for Ormond. Accordingly,
from April 1646, while Ormond remained in power for Charles at Dublin, it
was in the name of Lord Lisle, as "Lord Lieutenant-General," that all
commissions for Parliament respecting Ireland were issued. Lord Lisle,
however, had not gone over to Ireland, but had been waiting till he could
take troops with him. It remained, therefore, for Ormond to do what he
finally could in Ireland for the fallen King. He had been in negotiation
with the Confederates for a Peace on more respectable terms than
Glamorgan's, and yet valuable for the King; and though, after Charles's
flight to the Scots, letters had come from Newcastle (June 11)
countermanding previous instructions, Ormond had persevered. On the 28th
of July, 1646, _Ormond's Articles of Peace with the Irish Rebels_
were signed at Dublin and published for general information. They
promised the repeal of all acts against the Roman Catholic Religion in
Ireland, and admission of Roman Catholics to a proportion of all places
of public trust; and the recompense was to be an army of 10,000 Irish for
his Majesty's assistance in England. The indignation among the
Parliamentarians in Ireland, and throughout England and Scotland, was
immense, and Ormond was the best-abused man living. Fortunately for him,
he was extricated from the consequences of his own Treaty. The Papal
Nuncio disowned it as insulting to the Church after Glamorgan's; the
Roman Catholic clergy gathered round the Nuncio; there were riots
wherever it was proclaimed; excommunications were thundered against its
adherents; the Confederate Commissioners who had made the Treaty were
imprisoned; the Nuncio himself became generalissimo, and, with Owen Roe
O'Neile's army on one side of him and General Preston's on the other,
declared war afresh against Ormond, and marched in his robes upon Dublin.
For Ormond then there remained one plain duty. To save English rule and
the existence of Protestantism in Ireland, he must hand over Dublin and
the entire management of the war to the English Parliament. Having
procured the King's full consent, he began a treaty with Parliament to
this effect in Nov. 1646. As he was staunch in his desire to make the
best bargain for the King he could, he was in no hurry; so that in
February 1646-7, when the King was taken to Holmby, Ormond was still in
Dublin, going on with the Treaty. In reality, however, by that time
Ireland was as good as transferred to the Parliament. They had acted on
the knowledge. Dec. 23,1646, "Resolved that this House doth declare that
they will prosecute and carry on an offensive war in Ireland for the
regaining of that kingdom to the obedience of the kingdom of England;"
Jan. 4, 1646-7, "Resolved that an Ordinance be forthwith prepared and
brought in for establishing and settling the same Form of Church-
government in the kingdom of Ireland as is or shall be established in the
kingdom of England;" such were two momentous votes of the Commons when
the King was about to leave Newcastle. Nay, on the 28th of January, when
the Scots were handing over the King to the English, Lord Lisle had left
London for Ireland to assume his Lord-Lieutenancy. A new sword of State
had been made for him; his Irish Council, of nine members at £500 a year
each, had been nominated; and, at his special request, Major Thomas
Harrison of the New Model had accompanied him. [Footnote: Authorities for
the summary of Irish affairs from 1641 to 1647 given in the text are--
Rushworth, VI. 238-249; Clar. 641, and at various other points; Whitlocke
under Jan. 25 and 28 and March 9, 1646-7; Godwin, I. 245 _et seq._,
and II. 102 _et seq._; Commons Journals of dates given, with other
entries from Dec. 1646 to Feb. 1646-7; and Carte's Ormond. Carte's large
book is of some value from the abundance of information that was at his
disposal, but is intrinsically silly.]

What could Lord Lisle do without troops? Now was the time for England to
perform fully for "the gasping and bleeding Island" that duty of which,
with all the excuse of her own pressing needs, she had been long too
negligent. Now was the time to revenge the massacre of 1641, and re-
subject Ireland to English rule and the one only right faith and worship.
And were not the means at hand? An army of 25,000 or 30,000 Englishmen
was now standing idle: why not disband and cashier part of them, and
recast the rest into a new army for the service of Ireland? The question
was obvious and natural to all; but it was put most loudly by the
Presbyterians, because of a peculiar interest in it. They had never liked
the Army of the New Model; all its victories had not reconciled them to
it, or made them cease to regret the Army of the Old Model, That had been
a respectable army, with the Earl of Essex at its head; this was an army
of Independents, Sectaries, Tolerationists. Might not the disbanding of
this army be so managed as to be at once a deliverance of England from a
great danger and the salvation of Ireland? What was necessary in the
process was to get rid of Cromwell, his followers among the officers, and
the most peccant parts of the soldiery, so as to leave a sufficient mass
to be re-formed, with additions, into an army of the Old Model type, the
command of which might be given to Fairfax if he would take it, or
perhaps to honest Skippon, or, best of all, to Sir William Waller.

This had been the understanding between the English Presbyterians and
their Scottish friends since the close of the war. [Footnote: In a letter
of Baillie's October 2, 1646, he expects "the Sectarian Army disbanded
and that party humbled."] There was, however, another party likely to
have a voice in the business. This was the Army itself.

Never under the sun had there been such an army before. It was not large
according to our modern ideas of armies: only some 25,000 or 30,000 men,
four-fifths of them foot-soldiers and the rest horse-troopers and
dragoons. But imagine these all hardy men, thoroughly drilled and
disciplined, and conscious that it was they who had done the work, they
who had fought the battles, they who had saved England. Imagine farther
that this Army had somehow come to be constituted, through its entire
mass, on Cromwell's extraordinary principle, announced by him to Hampden
at the beginning of the war, that the power of an army depends ultimately
on the "spirit," or intrinsic moral mood, of the individuals composing
it. Imagine that the atoms of this army were all "men of a spirit," men
who had not fought as hirelings, but as earnest partakers in a great
cause. Imagine them, if you like, as an army of fanatics. This phrase,
however, might mislead, unless qualified.

The common conception of an army of fanatics is that of an army mad for
one set of tenets. Now the Parliamentary Army was really, as the
Presbyterians called it, an Army of Sectaries. It was a miscellany of all
the forms of Puritan belief known in England, with forms of belief
included that were not Puritan. The much largest proportion, after
Presbyterians, of whom there were many, and ordinary Independents, of
whom there were more, were Sectaries of the fervid and devout sorts, such
as Baptists, Old Brownists, and Antinomians, with mystical Millenaries
and Seekers, all passionately Scriptural, saturated with the language and
history of the Old Testament, and zealously Anti-Romanist and Anti-
prelatic; and these, on the whole, were the men after Cromwell's heart.
Such, among others, was Harrison--whom Baxter, who had seen much of him,
classes at this time among the Anabaptists and Antinomians, telling us
"he would not dispute at all [with Baxter], but he would in good
discourse very fluently pour out himself in the extolling of Free Grace,
which was savoury to those that had right principles, though he had some
misunderstandings of Free Grace himself:" a man, adds Baxter, "of
excellent natural parts for affection and oratory, but not well seen in
the principles of his Religion; of a sanguine complexion; naturally of
such a vivacity, hilarity, and alacrity, as another man hath when he hath
drunken a cup too much;" and whom Baxter had once heard, in a battle,
when the enemy began to flee, "with a loud voice break forth into the
praises of God, with fluent expressions, as if he had been in a rapture."
But there were also in the army Sectaries of a cooler or easier order--
Arminians, Anti-Sabbatarians, Anti-Scripturists, Familists, and Sceptics.
Hardly a form of odd opinion mentioned in our conspectus of English Sects
in a former chapter but had representatives in the Army; nay, new
speculative oddities had broken out in some regiments; and it may be
doubted whether even in the English mind of our own time there is any
form of speculation so peculiar as not to have had its prototype or
lineal progenitor in that mass of steel-clad theorists contemporary with
the Westminster Assembly. Nor did each man keep his theory to himself.
There were constant prayer-meetings in companies and regiments, and
meetings for theological debate; troopers or foot-soldiers off duty would
expound or harangue to their fellows in camp, or even from the pulpits of
parish-churches when such were convenient; whenever the Army halted there
was a hum of holding-forth. There were army-chaplains, it is true, and
some of them, such as Peters, Dell, and Saltmarsh, great favourites; but,
on the whole, the regular cloth was in disrepute: those who belonged to
it were spoken of as the _Levites_ or priests by profession; the
need for such a profession was voted obsolete; and any man was held to be
as good for the preaching office as any other, if he had the preaching
gift. And with the respect for ordination had vanished the respect for
most of the regular Church-forms and symbols. Not only did preaching
officers and troopers, when they chanced to enter parish-churches, often
eject the regular ministers from the pulpits, and hold forth themselves
instead--in which kind of practice Colonel Hewson and Major Axtell are
reported to have been conspicuous; but the contempt for established
decencies of worship had vented itself, at least in occasional instances,
in very profane humours. Soldiers had scandalized country-congregations
by sitting with their hats on during prayer and singing; and Hewson's men
were said once to have kept possession of a parish-church for eight days,
having a fire in the chancel, and smoking tobacco _ad libitum_. Such
were, doubtless, mere excesses here and there, which would have been
rebuked by the more serious men who formed the bulk of the Army; but it
is quite certain that even among these that extreme kind of Independency
had become common which repudiated a National Church of any kind
whatsoever, nay denied that there was any Church on earth at all, any
system of spiritual ordinances visibly from God, anything but a great
invisible brotherhood of Saints, walking in this life's darkness,
passionately using meanwhile this symbol and that to feature forth the
unimaginable, glad above all in the great glow of the present Bible, but
expecting also, each soul for itself, rays and shafts from the Light
beyond. Of this kind of indifferency to all competing forms of external
worship, and even of doctrine, combined with either a mystical and dreamy
piety, or a wildly-fervid enthusiasm, Dell and Saltmarsh, among the army-
chaplains, seem to have been the most noted exponents; but it was really
a modification of that which is already known to us as the _Seekerism_ of
Roger Williams. At all events, that absolute doctrine of Toleration which
Roger Williams had propounded, and which was logically inseparable in his
mind from Independency at its purest, had found its largest discipleship
in the Parliamentary Army. Toleration to some extent was the universal
Army tenet; even the Presbyterians of the Army, with some exceptions, had
learnt to be Tolerationists in some degree. But a very full principle of
Toleration had possessed most, and the most absolute possible principle
was avowed by many. "If I should worship the Sun or Moon. like the
Persians, or that pewter-pot on the table, nobody has anything to do with
it," one sectary had been heard to say; and some even had "justified the
Irish Rebellion," on the ground that the Irish "did it for the liberty of
their consciences and for their country." If this last extreme
application of the Toleration doctrine did actually come from the mouth
of a sectary serving in the Army (which is not quite clear from the
report), it must be regarded, I suspect, as one of those eccentricities
of mess-table debate which, when Baxter talked of them to Colonel
Purefoy, vouching that he had heard such things himself, that officer
indignantly refused to credit, saying, "If Noll Cromwell should hear any
soldier speak but such a word, he would cleave his crown." Precisely the
Toleration doctrine, however, was that in which Cromwell himself was most
thorough-going and most distinctly the representative of the whole Army.
Even Baxter, after his two years of army-chaplaincy, spent in observing
the medley of sects around him and combating their errors, could not
refer Cromwell with positive certainty to any one of the Sects. He seemed
most for the Anabaptists, Antinomians, and Seekers, but "did not openly
profess what opinion he was of himself." But on Toleration of Religious
Differences he was explicit and decided. All that were most to his mind
in the Army "he tied together by the point of Liberty of Conscience,
which was the common interest in which they did unite." [Footnote: This
description of the Parliamentary Army is a digest of the best knowledge I
have been able to form from various readings in contemporary books and
study of Army documents; but particulars of it are from Baxter's
Autobiography (1696), Part I. 52-57, and Edwards's _Gangræna_, Parts II.
and III. _passim_. The good, though narrow and hypochondriac, Baxter may
be thoroughly relied on for whatever he vouches as a fact known to
himself; otherwise, _cum grano_. Edwards has to be put into the witness-
box and cross-examined unmercifully, not as a wilful liar, but as an
incredibly spiteful collector of gossip for the Presbyterians. After all,
many of the so-called ribaldries and profanities reported by him of the
Army Sectaries turn out innocent enough, or only very rough jokes, as
when a soldier told a godly old woman that, if she did not believe in
universal redemption, she would be damned. Perhaps his most horrible
story is that of some soldiers taking a horse into a village church in
Hunts and baptizing him in all due form at the font, giving him the name
of _Esau_ because he was hairy. The story, with a certificate of its
truth by seven of the villagers, will be found in Gangræna, Part III. 17,
18. But, if the atrocity ever did occur, its date, according to Edwards
himself, was June 2, 1644, _i.e._ in the time of the Old Model Army, to
which the very objection of Cromwell and others was that it did not
consist sufficiently of "men of a spirit."]

There were three reasons why this extraordinary Army should object to
being disbanded:--(1) They had large and long-deferred claims upon the
Parliament for arrears of pay, compensation for losses, provision for the
wounded and disabled and for widows and orphans, indemnity also for
illegal or questionable acts done in the time of war. Was the Army to let
itself be disbanded without due security on these points? (2) There was
the unsettled question of Religious Toleration. The whole drift of things
in the Parliament and in the Westminster Assembly seemed to be to a
uniform and compulsory Presbyterianism; and was that a prospect to which
the Army, or nine-tenths of it, could look forward placidly? The Army did
not want to undo the Presbyterian settlement as already decreed, but they
were unwilling to disband before a Toleration under that settlement had
been arranged. (3) Over and above these two reasons, and in powerful
conjunction with them, was another. The Army, although an Army, had not
ceased to regard itself as a portion of the English people; nay, it had
come to regard itself as a select portion of that people, whose
opportunities of thinking and reasoning on political affairs had been
peculiarly good. It had come to be, in its own belief, an organ of
political opinion, representing wishes and feelings of large parts of the
population which were not represented in Parliament, and representing
these in the form of conclusions for the future more radical and more
definite than any that Parliament alone was ever likely to work out. In
short, those democratic ideas the prevalence of which in the Army had so
surprised Baxter when he first joined it had now become paramount. It was
not only that the Army had formed views more severe than those of the
Presbyterians as to the proper terms of the settlement to be made with
the King; it was that the Army thought the present the time for
discussing the whole subject of the constitution of the country. The
House of Lords, for example! Whether there should be a Peerage at all,
legislating in a separate House by mere hereditary right, might be a very
fair question, and was one on which the Army had pretty decided opinions
But that the House of Lords then sitting--not the assembled Peerage of
England at all, but a mere fifth-part of that Peerage, in the shape of
some twenty-eight persons meeting from day to day, sometimes as few as
half-a-dozen of them at a time, and not only partaking with the other
House in the legislation, but often obstructing that House, thwarting it,
throwing out its measures,--that this should continue who would maintain?
No! the House of Lords must go, and the sole House in England must be the
other House, the "House of Representers." But here too there was room for
improvement. The House of Commons then sitting was numerically
substantial enough, now that it had been Recruited; and no one could look
back on the great things which the House had done without gratitude and
admiration. But were there not signs of exhaustion, debility, and wrong-
headedness, even in that House, arising partly from its long independence
of the People, partly from the imperfect system of suffrage under which
it had been elected. Only in an imperfect sense could the existing House
be called a "House of Representers;" and, as soon as should be
convenient, it must be dissolved and succeeded by a House fully deserving
that name. For the election of such a House there must be a reform of the
details of the electoral system, including the abolition of such
anomalies as the return of one-twelfth of the whole House by the single
and remote county of Cornwall, and a redistribution of seats in
accordance with the proportions of population and property in the various
parts of England. All these ideas, and many more, anticipating with
surprising exactness the Parliamentary Reform movements of much later
times, were agitating the Parliamentary Army while the King was in his
captivity at Holmby. Pamphlets from London, actively circulated among the
regiments, aided the discussion and supplied it with topics and catch-
words. Especially popular among the soldiers, and keeping up their
excitement more particularly against the House of Lords, were the
pamphlets that came from John Lilburne and an associate of his named
Richard Overton.--Lilburne, whom we left in October 1645, just released
from the short imprisonment to which he had been committed by the Commons
(_antè_, p. 390), had gone on again in his old pugnacious way, till,
by Prynne's contrivance, he found himself in the clutches of the Lords.
Called before that House, in June 1646, for a Letter he had printed,
called _The Just Man's Justification_, he had amazed the Peers by
conduct such as they had never seen before. He had refused to kneel,
refused to take off his hat, refused to hear the charges against him,
stopped his ears while they were read, denied the jurisdiction of the
Peers, stamped at them, glared at them, told them his whole mind about
them, appealed to the Commons as the sole power in the State, and
altogether behaved like a mad ox. They had consequently fined him £4,000,
and committed him to Newgate for seven years. For similar offences to the
Peers, and similar contumacy when charged with them, Richard Overton, a
printer and assiduous publisher of pamphlets, had also been sent to
prison two months afterwards (Aug. 1646). There was considerable sympathy
with both among the Londoners, and the Independents in the Commons had
taken up Lilburne's case and procured the appointment of a Committee on
it. Nor even in Newgate, it appears, had he been debarred the use of pen
and ink; for, in addition to his former pamphlets, there had come from
him fiercer and fresh ones--_Anatomy of the Lords' Tyranny_, _London's
Liberty in Chains_, _The Free Man's Freedom_, _The Oppressed Man's
Oppressions_, _The Resolved Man's Resolution_, &c. These were the
pamphlets of Lilburne which, together with Overton's, one of which was
_An Arrow Shot into the Prerogative Bowels of the Arbitrary House of
Lords_, were popular with the common soldiers of the Parliamentary Army,
and nursed that especial form of the democratic passion among them which
longed to sweep away the House of Lords and see England governed by a
single Representative House.--Baxter, who reports this growth of
democratic opinion in the Army from his own observation, distinctly
recognises in it the beginnings of that rough ultra-Republican party
which afterwards became formidable under the name of THE LEVELLERS. All
the while, however, there was also a quiet formation, in some of the
superior and more educated minds of the Army, of sentiments essentially
Republican, but more reserved and tentative in the style of their
Republicanism. Among these minds too it had become a question whether a
mere settlement with the King even on the basis of the Nineteen
Propositions would suffice, and whether the hour had not come for organic
changes in the Constitution of England. Perhaps the leader of Army
thought in this direction was Cromwell's son-in-law Ireton. [Footnote:
Baxter _ut supra_; Gangræna, part III. _passim_; Lords Journals, June 10,
11, 23, and July 11, 1646 (Lilburne's case), and Aug. 11 (Overton's);
Godwin, II. 407 _et seq._; Wood's Ath. III. 353] That the English
Presbyterians, bereft now even of that overrated support which had been
afforded them by the presence of a Scottish Army in England, should have
rushed into a struggle with the English Army, such as it has been
described, without trying so much as a compromise on the Toleration
question, is one of the greatest examples of political stupidity on
record. They seem to have calculated mainly on the fact that they had a
majority in Parliament. Of the few Lords forming the Upper House they
could count nearly all as decidedly with them. In the Commons, too, where
the balance had always been more nearly equal, Presbyterianism had of
late been gaining force. Why it had been so is not very obvious. The
latest Recruiters may have been politicians of a more Presbyterian type
than the earlier ones; and of these earlier Recruiters some who had come
in as Independents may have veered round. Men whose opinions are not very
decided tend naturally to the winning side, and the King's flight to the
Scots and their long possession of him had put Presbyterianism in the
likelihood to win. However it had happened, the Presbyterians had of late
been preponderating in the Commons. In a vote on Sept. 1, 1646, affecting
the relations of the Parliament to the Scots, the Presbyterians had
beaten the Independents by 140 to 101; in another vote on Dec. 25, on the
question whether the words "according to the Covenant" should be added to
a Resolution, the _Yeas_ or Presbyterians had beaten by 133 to 91; and in
an interesting vote on Dec. 31, on the question whether the words "or
expound the Scriptures" should be added to a Resolution forbidding
unordained persons to preach, the _Yeas_ or Presbyterians had beaten by
no fewer than 105 to 57. In this last vote Cromwell was one of the
Tellers for the _Noes_ or Independents. In testing divisions these
numbers may be taken as representing the relative strengths of the two
parties in the end of 1646 and the beginning of 1647. But, even with a
considerable majority in the Commons, and with the Lords all but wholly a
Presbyterian House, the confidence of the Presbyterians in confronting
the Army can be accounted for only by reckless leadership. Holles and
Stapleton, their most forward men in the Commons, appear to have been men
of but ordinary faculty and decidedly rash temper, incomparably inferior
to their great opponents. One argument they had, of which they did not
fail to make the most. The City of London was eminently and staunchly
Presbyterian; and would that great city, the central money-power of the
nation, allow the Government to be dictated to by an Army of Sectaries?
[Footnote: Commons Journals of dates given, with divisions generally
between Aug. 1646 and Feb. 1646-7; Godwin, II. 263 _et seq._]

The struggle, long foreseen, began actually in the first two months and a
half of the King's stay at Holmby, _i.e._ in February, March, and
April, 1646-7. The gauntlet was thrown down by Parliament. Feb. 19, in an
unusually full House, it was carried by 158 (Holles and Stapleton
tellers) against 148 (Haselrig and Evelyn tellers), that no force of Foot
beyond what was necessary for garrisons should be kept up in England, but
only a certain force of Horse. On the 5th of March there came a vote on
the important question who should be the Commander-in-chief of the
retained Army, and so jealous had the Presbyterians become even of
Fairfax, because of his connexion with the existing Army, that the
Independents, though going for him to a man, carried his appointment but
by a majority of 12. Subsequent resolutions, carried without division,
were that no member of the House should hold a military command
(Cromwell's Self-denying Ordinance cleverly repeated against himself),
that no officer in the future Army under Fairfax should be above the rank
of Colonel, and that all officers should take the Covenant; and when, on
the farther and more outrageous proposition, that all officers must
conform to the Presbyterian Church-government, the Independents forced a
division; they lost by 108 _Noes_ (Haselrig and Evelyn), against 136
_Yeas_ (Holies and Stapleton). By additional Resolutions of March 29
and April 8 the arrangements were completed. It was formally resolved
that all the Foot of the existing Army not required for the garrisons
should be disbanded, and that the future Army of Horse under Fairfax
should consist of nine regiments of 600 each, or 5,400 in all, recruited
out of the existing Army or otherwise. The Colonels for the nine re-
modelled regiments were named, some of them cavalry Colonels of the
existing Army, but not all. Cromwell's own regiment, or the regiment that
should be built out of any safe shred of it with other materials, was to
go to the Presbyterian Major Huntingdon.----So much for England and
Wales; but what of the new Army for Ireland? That also had been arranged
for. March 6, it was voted by the Commons that the Army for Ireland
should consist of 8,400 foot, 3,000 horse, and 1,200 dragoons, to be
recruited as far as possible from the existing English Army. But how
about the command of this Army and the government of Ireland while it
should be serving there? Lord Lisle, then in Ireland as Lord-Lieutenant
for the Parliament, was one of Cromwell's disciples, and had been
appointed by Cromwell's influence. It would not do to leave _him_ in
command. Fortunately, he had been appointed but for a year; and, to avoid
re-appointing him, it was resolved (April 1) that the previous vote of
the Houses for the management of Ireland through "a single person of
honour" should be rescinded, and that, while the Civil Government should
revert to the two Lords-Justices in Dublin, the military command should
be in the hands of a Field-Marshal, attended by Parliamentary
Commissioners. Sir William Waller was named for this Field-Marshalship;
but the Presbyterians did not go to the vote for him; and Skippon, then
at Newcastle, and unaware of the honour intended for him, was unanimously
chosen (April 2). The Presbyterian Massey was to be his Lieutenant-
General. As an inducement to officers and soldiers of the English Army to
re-enlist for the Irish service, high pay was promised, with an option of
taking part of it in the valuable form of Irish lands. [Footnote: Commons
Journals of the dates given.]

0, if you had been at Saffron Walden in Essex, where the bulk of the
English Army was quartered, when the news of these votes of the Commons
reached them! What murmurs among the common soldiers, what consultations
among the officers! The officers, as was fitting, took the lead. A
deputation of four Colonels and five Lieutenant-colonels had already gone
to London (March 22) with a Petition and Remonstrance. They had been
received graciously enough by the Lords, but coldly and with rebuke by
the Commons. Then, a great Petition being in preparation throughout the
Army, to be signed by both officers and men, and addressed to Fairfax as
Commander-in-chief, there had come, on a hasty motion by Holles, a
Declaration of the two Houses (March 29-30) voting the same dangerous and
mutinous, and threatening proceedings against such as should go on with
it. With vast self-control on the part of the Army, and much good
management on the part of Fairfax, the offensive Petition had been
suppressed; and through a great part of April the dispute took the form
of conferences between Fairfax and his officers and five Commissioners
sent down to the Army from Parliament (Waller and Massey among them) to
argue for the disbandment and promote re-enlistment for Ireland. At these
conferences the questions of arrears, indemnity, the rate of pay in
Ireland, &c., were all discussed, and the Commissioners tried to give
satisfactory explanations. It was a great point with the Army whether
Skippon would accept the Irish Field-Marshalship; and at one of the
conferences, when Colonel Hammond was expressing this for his comrades,
and saying that nothing would be more likely to induce them to enlist for
Ireland than the knowledge that that "great soldier" was to be in
command, "_All, all!_" cried the assembled officers, "_Fairfax and
Cromwell, and we all go!_" No real conciliation, however, was
effected; and on the 26th of April the Commissioners, in their "perfect
list" of officers who had agreed individually to go to Ireland, could
report but three Colonels, and a proportionate following of Captains and
subalterns. Among the men it was worse. In one company, eight score
strong, twenty-six had volunteered to go with their Captain; in another
the Captain could not get a single man to join him. Parliament was taken
aback by this ill success; but Holles and his party were undaunted. It
was a gleam in their favour that Skippon, coming to London from
Newcastle, did at length (April 27) accept the Irish Field-Marshalship.
The Houses voted him their thanks and a gift of 1,000_l._and on the
same day it was carried in the Commons, by the overwhelming majority of
114 to 7 (the Independents evidently abstaining from the vote), that the
Army, horse and foot, should be immediately disbanded with payment of six
weeks of arrears. Orders were also issued for the appearance at the bar
of the House of some of the most refractory superior officers and the
arrest of several subalterns; and at the same moment the Common Council
of the City of London proved their Presbyterian zeal by ejecting Alderman
Pennington and other prominent Independents from the Committee of the
City Militia. On the very day of this concurrence of Presbyterian
demonstrations (April 27) there was presented to the Commons a "Humble
Petition of the Officers in behalf of themselves and the Soldiers," with
an accompanying "Vindication" of their recent conduct. Lieutenant-general
Thomas Hammond headed the list of Petitioners; next came Colonels
Whalley, Lambert, Robert Lilburne, Rich, Hewson, Robert Hammond, and
Okey; then Lieutenant-colonels Pride, Kelsay, Reade, Jubbs, Grimes, Ewer,
and Salmon; then Majors Rogers, Axtell, Cowell, Smith, Horton, and
Desborough; and there followed about 130 captains and inferior officers.
Such an Officers' Petition might well have given the Presbyterians pause;
but three days afterwards (April 30) there came something more
extraordinary. It was a Letter brought to town, and delivered to Skippon
and Cromwell for presentation to the House, by three private troopers,
professing to be "agents" or "agitators" or "adjutators" for some
regiments in the Army. It used very high language indeed. It complained
of the "scandalous and false suggestions" current against the Army, spoke
darkly of "a plot contrived by some men who had lately tasted of
sovereignty," and declared flatly that the soldiers "would neither be
employed for the service of Ireland nor suffer themselves to be disbanded
till their desires were granted, and the rights and liberties of the
subjects should be vindicated and maintained." The amazed House ordered
the three troopers who had brought the Letter, and who were waiting
outside, to be brought in. They came in, gave their names as Edward
Saxby, William Allen, and Thomas Sheppard, and stood stoutly to their
business. Holles and his clique were for committing them to prison; but,
Skippon certifying that they were honest men, and another member
suggesting that, if they were committed at all, it should be "to the best
inn of the town, and sack and sugar provided for them," the more good-
humoured counsel prevailed, and they were dismissed. Nay, their
appearance and their Letter had produced an impression. In Holles's own
words, "the House flatted," began to think it had been too peremptory,
and resolved that Skippon, Cromwell, Ireton, and Fleetwood, should go at
once to Saffron Walden, as mediators between it and the Army. [Footnote:
Commons Journals of all the cited dates; Rushworth, VI. 444-475;
Whitlocke, II. 121-137; Parl. Hist. III. 560-576; Holles's Memoirs by
himself (1699), pp. 88-90.]

Agents, or Agitators, or Adjutators, the three bold troopers had called
themselves; and it was the first time the Houses had heard the name. It
announced, however, an important reality. The common soldiers had made up
their minds that they could not leave the struggle for the Army's rights
wholly in the hands of the officers, and that it might assist these
officers if they, the rank and file, with the corporals and sergeants,
formed an organization among themselves for the same ends. Accordingly,
trusty men in each regiment had been chosen to meet and consult with
others of other regiments, and the name "Agitators" or "Adjutators" had
been given to these deputies. Very soon the organization was so perfect
that every troop or company had its two Agitators, every regiment its
distinct Agitatorship composed of the Agitators of the several troops or
companies, and so by gradation upwards to general meetings of the
Agitators of the whole Army and special meetings of Committees for
maturing business more privately. Too obvious a connexion between this
association and the higher army-officers was inconvenient; but it was
useful to have connecting links in officers of the lower ranks; and the
Presidency of the Agitators came, at length, to be vested in one such
officer. This was James Berry, one of the captains of Fairfax's own
horse-regiment, in which Desborough was Major. He had been a clerk in
some iron-works in the west of England, and was "of very good natural
parts, especially mathematical and mechanical." Before the war he and
Richard Baxter had been bosom friends; but, since he had come into the
Army and been much in the society of Cromwell, he had become, says
Baxter, a man of new lights in religion, regarding the old Puritans of
his acquaintance as "dull, self-conceited men of a lower form." During
Baxter's two years of army-chaplaincy, Berry had never visited him, nor
even seen him, except once or twice accidentally. [Footnote: Rushworth,
VI. 485: Holles, 86, 87; Baxter's Autobiography, Part I. 57 and 97.]

Through the greater part of May, Fairfax being then in London, Cromwell,
and his fellow-commissioners, Skippon, Ireton, and Fleetwood, remained at
Saffron Walden, busy in their work of mediation. Three successive letters
to Speaker Lenthall reported the amount of their success. It was next to
nothing. They had obtained, they say in the last of the three letters
(May 17), a complete statement of the grievances of the Army, in the form
of papers which they would bring to town; but meanwhile they found the
soldiers so unsettled that they did not think it safe to leave them.
Skippon and Ireton, in fact, did remain; but Cromwell and Fleetwood
returned to town, May 21, to report to the House in greater detail. Among
the documents they brought with them, representing the opinions and
demands of the Army, was one which had been prepared with extraordinary
care. The various votes relating to the Army having been read to each
regiment by its commanding officer, the regimental Agitatorships
(apparently now first fully constituted) had reported the opinions and
demands of the regiments severally, and these opinions and demands had
been digested into one Draft at a conference of the chief officers, on
the principle of including only such demands as were made unanimously by
all the regiments. Rushworth does not give the document, but describes it
as fair and moderate, and tells us in particular that, while it
complained of misrepresentations and ill-treatment, and desired
reparation, it denounced only one person by name. One is not surprised to
learn that this was the Rev. Mr. Edwards. His _Gangræna_, it was
said, had been written expressly to make the Army odious. [Footnote:
Letters in Appendix IX. to Carlyle's Cromwell; Commons Journals of May
21; and Rushworth, VI. 485-6.]

Moderate or not, the Army's _ultimatum_ obtained but an unfriendly
hearing in the two Houses; and, between the 22nd and the 28th of May,
Fairfax having meanwhile returned to the Army, they issued their opposed
_ultimatum_ in a sharp series of orders. The entire army of Foot was
to be disbanded, willing or unwilling, on the terms fixed: Fairfax's own
regiment at Chelmsford on June 1, Hewson's at Bishop's Stortford on June
3, Lambert's at Saffron Walden on June 5, and so on regiment by regiment,
each on a named day and at a named place, a Committee of the two Houses
to be present at each disbanding, and Skippon also to be present to
enlist such of the disbanded men as would go to Ireland. These orders
reached Fairfax at Bury St. Edmund's in Suffolk, to which he had removed
his head-quarters. They threw the Army into an ungovernable uproar, which
subsided in a day or two into an ominous calm. For a great resolution had
been taken. The Agitators, at a meeting on Saturday, May 29, had drawn up
a petition to Fairfax for a speedy Rendezvous of the whole Army at one
place for united action; and a council of officers, to the number of 200,
with Ireton among them, had declared themselves on the same day to the
same effect. They advised Fairfax to grant the Rendezvous, telling him
that, if he did not, the men would hold one themselves and it was sure
then to end in tumult. Fairfax had taken the advice; and in the last days
of May orders were out for the "contraction of the Army's quarters" by
drawing the dispersed regiments closer together, and for a general
"Rendezvous" at Kentford Heath, close to Newmarket, on Friday the 4th of
June. [Footnote: Parl. Hist. III. 582-588, and Rushworth, VI. 494-500.]
Fairfax, with whatever hesitation, had thus thrown in his lot with the
Army. Skippon, though he had accepted the Irish Field-Marshalship, almost
repented having done so, and was one at heart with his old comrades. Of
the other officers only a small minority, whether from Presbyterian
predilections or out of mere respect for authority, wavered towards
Parliament. The chief of these were Colonels Harley, Herbert, Fortescue,
Sheffield, Butler, Sir Robert Pye, and Graves, this last being the
Colonel in charge of the King at Holmby. On the other side, round
Fairfax, and sustaining him, were Generals Ireton and Hammond, as next in
rank; with Whalley, Rich, Okey, Rainsborough, Robert Lilburne, Sir
Hardress Waller, Robert Hammond, Lambert, Hewson, Ewer, Kelsay,
Ingoldsby, Pride, Axtell, Jubbs, Desborough, and other Colonels,
Lieutenant-Colonels, and Majors, among whom is not to be forgotten the
enthusiast Harrison, back from Ireland just at the right moment. But what
of Fleetwood and Cromwell, left in their places in the House of Commons?
Which way they would go nobody could doubt; but the question was whether
they might not be seized as hostages by the Presbyterians and detained in
London. As far as Fleetwood was concerned, the danger was over on the 2nd
of June; on which day he had leave from the House "to go into the
country," and went we can imagine whither. For Cromwell the danger was
greater. He too, however, had made his arrangements. On the evening of
the 3rd of June, or early on the following morning, just in time to avoid
the arrest and impeachment which Holles and the Presbyterians were
preparing for him, he rode quietly out of London in the direction of the
Army. As far as can be ascertained, he had waited purposely to cover
Fleetwood's departure, and be himself the last army-man to leave the
Commons. [Footnote: Commons Journals, June 2; Whitlocke, May 31;
Rushworth, VI. 464-8 and 495; Holles 85, 86; Clar. 611; Godwin, II. 311,
312. Cromwell's so-called "Flight to the Army" is an incident made much
of by Royalist and Presbyterian writers, and Clarendon's account of it
and what preceded it is a perfect jumble of incompatible dates and
confused rumours. What all those writers (Holles, Clement Walker,
Clarendon, Baxter, Burnet, &c.) wanted to make out, and really succeeded
in transmitting as a fact, was that Cromwell's whole conduct through the
dispute between the Army and Parliament, up to the moment of his flight,
had been a tissue of the profoundest craft and hypocrisy. He had pushed
on the policy of disbandment in the Parliament on the one hand, and on
the other he had fomented the mutiny in the Army through the Agitators;
to lull suspicion when it was roused, he had at the last moment protested
in the House in the presence of Almighty God that he knew the Army would
lay down their arms; and not till his flight was the whole depth of his
dissimulation known! On these statements, and the disposition of mind
that could invent them or believe in them, see Mr. Carlyle's impressive
words (Cromwell's Letters and Speeches, I. 220-222). The real facts are
to be gathered or inferred from the Commons Journals. Cromwell had been
in London through February, March, and April, while the votes for
disbandment, &c. were passed, unable to resist those votes, but anxious
to prevent a rupture, and doing his best to that end: and not till after
his return from his mission of mediation to the Army (May 21), or even
till after the Army's resolution for a Rendezvous (May 29), were his
hopes of a reconciliation utterly gone.]

The general Rendezvous of the Army was duly held, as appointed, near
Newmarket, in Cambridgeshire, on Friday the 4th of June. There were
present seven foot-regiments and six regiments of horse--a full
representation of the Army, though not the whole. There was the utmost
display of resolution. One great general Petition was agreed to; a solemn
engagement was drawn up and signed by officers and soldiers; Fairfax rode
from regiment to regiment, addressed each, and was received with outcries
of applause. The proceedings were not over on the 4th, but protracted
themselves into the next day. On that day it was that a strange
excitement or suspense, which had been visible in all faces from the very
beginning of the Rendezvous, in consequence of news then received, was
relieved by the arrival of farther news. "Joyce has done it! Joyce has
done it!" were the words that might then have been heard through the
assembled Army, caught up and repeated by group after group of talking
soldiers over the heath. [Footnote: Rushworth, VI. 504-512.]

Who was Joyce, and what had he done? These questions take us back to the
King at Holmby.--His Majesty, watching the course of the struggle between
the Parliament and the Army, had at last, on the 12th of May, sent in his
long-deferred Answer to the Nineteen Propositions. It was substantially
the Draft which he had submitted to the Queen and the Earl of Lanark in
the preceding December, but had suppressed (_antè_, pp. 505-6). He
offered the surrender of the Militia for ten years, and assent to
Presbytery for three years, but with a reserve of the Liturgy for himself
and his household, and the right of adding twenty divines to the
Westminster Assembly to assist in the final settlement of the Church-
question. The clause about a toleration for tender consciences, inserted
in the former Draft as a bait for the Independents, was now totally
omitted. In other words, Charles had thought the moment favourable for
re-opening negotiations with the Presbyterians. The reception of his
Letter by Parliament had been encouraging. It had been read in the Lords,
May 18; and it had then been carried in that House by a majority of 15 to
9 that his Majesty should be brought at once from Holmby to some place
nearer London, for the convenience of treating with him. Oatlands in
Surrey had been named, and the concurrence of the Commons requested.
Actually on May 21, the very day when Cromwell and Fleetwood returned to
the Commons from their mission to the Army, the matter had been mentioned
in that House. Although no decision had been come to, the Independents
and the Army had taken alarm. Colonel Graves, commanding the guard at
Holmby, was a Presbyterian; some of those everlasting Scottish
Commissioners were back in London, in their old quarters at Worcester
House; nay, one of them, the Earl of Dunfermline, had obtained leave from
the two Houses (May 13) to visit the King at Holmby! What might not be in
agitation under this proposal of a removal of the King to Oatlands? What
so easy as for the Presbyterians, with Colonel Graves for their agent, to
secure the King wholly to themselves, and so, having bargained with him
on their own terms, to invite back the Scots and defy the Army? Such had
been questions gossiped over in the Army at the very time when for other
reasons the resolution was taken for a general Rendezvous. This very
danger of some Presbyterian plot for removing the King from Holmby was an
additional reason for the Rendezvous and the contraction of the Army's
quarters. But the Rendezvous was not enough. Simultaneously with the
Rendezvous, and to turn it to full account, something else was necessary.
What that was had also been discussed among the Agitators with every
precaution of secrecy; select parties of troopers from different
regiments had been told off for the enterprise; and a George Joyce, once
a tailor, but now cornet in Fairfax's lifeguard, had been appointed to
take the lead. [Footnote: Lords and Commons Journals of dates given; and
Parl. Hist. III. 577-581, containing the King's Letter.]

As early as Wednesday June 2, or two days before the Rendezvous at
Newmarket, there had been a suspicious appearance of parties of horse
gathering to a body near Holmby. That night there was no doubt about it;
and Colonel Graves, who had reasons for thinking that he was their main
object, had just made his escape, when, about one in the morning of June
3, the troopers were in the park and meadows surrounding the house.
Before daylight they were within the gates, Graves's men having let them
in and at once fraternized with them. The whole of that day was spent by
the troopers, Joyce acting as their spokesman, in a parley with the
Commissioners in charge of the King--viz.: Lord Montague of Boughton, Sir
John Coke, Mr. Crewe, and General Browne--the King meanwhile aware of
what was going on, but keeping his privacy. Messengers had been sent off
from the Commissioners to London; where, accordingly, on Friday the 4th,
there was great excitement in the two Houses. That same morning the news
was known in the Army at Newmarket, just before the proceedings of the
Rendezvous began, not much to the surprise of some there perhaps, but
certainly to the surprise of Fairfax himself. He could not then
countermand the Rendezvous; but at once he detached Whalley and his
horse-regiment, to gallop to Holmby, take Colonel Graves's place, and see
that no harm was done. By that time, however, Joyce had completed his
business. Passing from his first topic with the Commissioners, which had
been Colonel Graves and his plot, he had insisted on seeing the King; had
compelled the Commissioners late at night on the 3rd to introduce him
into his Majesty's bedchamber; had there apologized, talked with his
Majesty, answered his questions, and distinctly informed him that he had
authority from the Army to carry him away from Holmby. The King, amused
and interested, as it seemed, rather than displeased, had taken the night
to think over the matter; and by six o'clock next morning he had left his
chamber, and was again in colloquy with Joyce, who had his troopers all
mounted and ready where they could be seen. His Majesty did not seem
disinclined to go, but was naturally inquisitive as to the authority by
which Joyce acted. Had he a commission from Fairfax? Mr. Joyce could not
say he had. Had he any commission at all? "_There_ is my commission,
your Majesty," said Joyce at last, pointing to his mounted troopers. "A
fair commission and well-written," said the King, smiling: "a company of
as handsome, proper gentlemen as ever I saw in my life." In short, as
there was no help for it, he supposed he must go. And so, actually, after
vain protests and solemn threats by the Commissioners, and especially by
General Browne, to all which Joyce listened unmoved, the party did set
off at a trot from Holmby, about two o'clock in the afternoon of June 4,
with Joyce at their head, and the King in their charge, accompanied by
the Commissioners. The Scottish Earl of Dunfermline, who had witnessed
much of the affair, had posted off to London, The Rendezvous at Newmarket
was then going on. [Footnote: Original accounts of Joyce's conduct at
Holmby and abduction of the King are (1) Letters of the Commissioners
from Holmby, June 3 and 4, and from Childersley June 8, addressed to
Manchester as Speaker of the Lords, and given in the Lords Journals; (2)
Fairfax's Letters to Speaker Lenthall, of June 4 and 7, in the Commons
Journal giving Fairfax's account of the information he had collected, and
of his own proceedings in consequence; (3) A very curious and interesting
contemporary account called "_An Impartial Narration, &c._," reprinted by
Rushworth in five folio pages (VI. 513-517). On reading this paper, one
soon finds, from lapses from the third into the first personal pronoun,
that the writer is Joyce himself. The narrative, though by a man stiff at
the pen and rather elated by the importance of his act, appears perfectly
trustworthy, and supplies, many particulars. Clarendon's version of the
incident is very loose and inaccurate. He huddles into one day what was
really an affair of two, &c.]

Joyce having given the King the option, within a certain extent, of the
place to which he would be conveyed, his Majesty himself had suggested
Newmarket. Thither, accordingly, they were bound. The evening of the 4th
brought them to Huntingdon, where his Majesty rested that night in the
mansion-house of Hinchinbrook, once the property of Cromwell's uncle, Sir
Oliver, but now of Colonel Edward Montague. Next day (Saturday, June 5)
they were again on their march for Newmarket, when they were met, about
four miles from Cambridge, by Whalley and his regiment of horse. Joyce,
of course, then retired from the management. Whalley, in accordance with
his instructions, was willing to convey the King and the Commissioners
back to Holmby; but this his Majesty positively declined. Till there
should be farther deliberation, therefore, his Majesty was quartered at
the nearest convenient house, which chanced to be Sir John Cutts's at
Childersley, near Cambridge. Here he remained over Sunday the 6th and
Monday the 7th. Meanwhile both in London and at Newmarket the commotion
was boundless. The full news had reached the two Houses on Saturday the
5th. Next day, though it was Sunday, they re-assembled for prayer and
business; but nothing practical could be thought of; all was panic,
passing into a mood of submissiveness to the Army. The only show of
anger, even in words, up to the mark of the occasion, was in a paper
given in to a Committee of the two Houses by the Scottish Commissioners,
with a speech in their name by the Earl of Lauderdale. The Scottish
nation had been insulted; its resentment might be expected; it would co-
operate at once with the Parliament for "the rescuing and defending his
Majesty's person," &c.! It was easier for the Scottish Commissioners to
speak in this strain than for the Parliament to take corresponding
action. The opportunity was now wholly with the Army. That they would
adopt Joyce's deed, and take the full benefit of it, could not be
doubted; or, if it could, the procedure of Fairfax at once put an end to
the doubt. On Saturday and Sunday he was lifting his Rendezvous from
Newmarket; by Monday the 7th he had brought his army bodily round about
Cambridge, so as to encircle the King; and on that day he, Cromwell,
Treton, and Hammond, with Whalley, Waller, Lambert, and other chief
officers, were assembled in interview with the King and the Commissioners
at Childersley House. No persuasion could induce his Majesty to go back
to Holmby. Much of the conversation turned on Joyce's daring act and his
authority for it; and Joyce, having been called in, underwent a long
examination and cross-examination on this point. Very little could be got
out of him, except that he had had no commission from Fairfax, and yet
that he considered his authority perfectly sufficient. Let the question,
he said, be put to the Army itself whether they approved of what he had
done, and, if three-fourths or four-fifths did not approve with
acclamations, he would be hanged with pleasure. The Commissioners thought
Joyce deserved hanging in any case; but the King, who had taken a liking
for him, told him that, though it was a great treason he had done, he
might consider himself pardoned. Joyce having then withdrawn, and the
King, having consented to remain with the Army, it was agreed that he
should be conveyed to Newmarket next day. [Footnote: Lords and Commons
Journals of June 5 and 6; Parl. Hist. III. 591-594; Rushworth, VI. 545-
550, with the previously-mentioned "Impartial Narration" of Joyce. To
this day nothing more is positively known of the real origin of the
scheme of the King's abduction than Joyce allowed himself to reveal. We
have Fairfax's own solemn word "as in the presence of God" that he was
utterly ignorant of the transaction till it was over; and in the same
Letter (June 7) he "dares be confident" the officers and the body of the
Army were equally ignorant. Royalist and Presbyterian writers attribute
the act directly to Cromwell. It was planned, says Holles, at a meeting
at Cromwell's house in London, May 30; and Clarendon and others lay
stress on the fact that the very day of Cromwell's flight from London
"was the day of Joyce's appearance at Holmby. The Presbyterian Major
Huntingdon, Cromwell's own Major, afterwards distinctly declared, Aug.
1648, that Joyce had his instructions from Cromwell, and that Joyce
himself averred this to excuse himself from Fairfax's displeasure (Parl.
Hist. III. 967-8). I suspect that, whatever Cromwell and Ireton may have
privately sanctioned, the thing was managed among the Agitators; and it
does not seem impossible that the original design was to seize Graves at
Holmby, quash his supposed plotting there with Lord Dunfermline, and take
possession of the King for the Army without removing him. As to the
abduction, Joyce may have been left a discretion.]

Before we pass on, with the King, into the third stage of his captivity,
we have to report briefly the progress that had been made, during his
stay at Holmby, in one or two matters of public concern, not directly
involved in the feud between the Parliament and the Army.

In April 1647, there had been a vigorous resumption of the Church-
question in the Commons, in consequence of the Report of a Committee on
obstructions which had arisen to the Presbyterian settlement. There was
great sluggishness all over the country in establishing elderships and
classes; returns from counties were deficient; even in London the
Provincial Synod had not yet met! To remove these obstructions various
orders were passed, the Lords concurring (April 20-29). The most
important of these was one for the immediate meeting of the FIRST
of St. Paul's, on Monday, May 3, 1647, and consisted of 108
representatives of the London classes or Presbyteries, in the proportion
of three ministers and six lay-elders from each. Dr. Gouge, of
Blackfriars, was chosen Prolocutor or Moderator of this first Synod, and
the term of the Moderatorship and of the Synod itself was to be for half
a year, or till November 1647; after which the Second Synod, similarly
elected, was to meet, with a new Moderator; and so on, every six months,
Synod after Synod, in Presbyterian London for ever. Of the First Synod,
under Dr. Gouge, we need only say that they arranged to meet twice a
week, and that, with the leave of the Parliament, they transferred their
meeting-place from St. Paul's to Sion College. The discussions there may
have been a little crippled by the fact that the new Presbyterian Church
of England was not yet provided with an authorized _Confession of
Faith_. The text of such a document, as prepared by the Westminster
Assembly, had been before the two Houses since Dec. 1646 (_antè_, p.
512); the Lords on the 16th of February had urged the Commons in almost
reproachful terms to quicken their pace in that business; the Commons on
the 22nd of April had at length roused themselves so far as to order the
Westminster Assembly to send in the Scriptural proofs which they had been
preparing according to a previous order; but, though on the 29th of April
these proofs were actually received and the Assembly thanked, it was not
till the 19th of May that the Commons did begin, Math printed copies of
the Confession before them, to examine the work, paragraph by paragraph.
On that day and May 28 they considered and passed, without division, and
apparently without much debate, the three first chapters of the
Confession--viz.: Chap. I. _Of the Holy Scriptures_ (ten paragraphs);
Chap. II. _Of God and the Holy Trinity_ (three paragraphs); Chap. III.
_Of God's Eternal Decrees_. The next chapter, entitled _Of Creation_, was
to be proceeded with punctually on Wednesday next, June 2; but, when that
day came, Fairfax's orders for the Army Rendezvous were out, Joyce was
prowling about Holmby, and the "Creation" had to be postponed. [Footnote:
Commons and Lords Journals of the days given (also a curious entry in
Commons Journals of April 27); Rushworth, VI. 476; Neal, III. 356-358.]

A matter on which the Parliament had been intent for some time was the
purgation and regulation of the University of Oxford. If Parliamentary
purgation had been found necessary for Cambridge three years before
(_antè_, pp. 92-96), how much more was this process needed in
Oxford, always the more Prelatic University of the two, and recently, as
the King's head-quarters through the Civil War, more deep-dyed in Prelacy
than ever! Where but in Oxford, amid courtiers and cavaliers, had ex-
bishops, Anglican doctors, and other dangerous persons, found house-room
for the last few years? Whence but from the colleges at Oxford had come
all the Prelatic sermons, pamphlets, and squibs against the Parliament,
the Covenant, and Presbytery, including the official Royalist newspaper,
the _Mercurius Aulicus_, edited by Mr. John Birkenhead and a society
of his brother-wits? Accordingly, since the surrender of Oxford in June
1646, punishment for the University had been in preparation. For various
reasons, however, it had been administered first in a didactic form.
Preachers of the right Presbyterian type had been sent down to Oxford by
authority in Aug. 1646; and these had been followed by such a rush of
volunteer zealots of all varieties that the loyal Oxford historian,
Anthony Wood, shuddered to his life's end at the recollection. "Hell was
broke loose," he says, "upon the poor remnant" of the scholars, so that
most of them "did either leave the University or abscond in their
respective houses till they could know their doom." That doom came at
length in the form of an Ordinance of the two Houses for the Visitation
of the University (May 1, 1647). It empowered twenty-four persons, not
members of Parliament, among whom were Sir Nathaniel Brent, William
Prynne, and thirteen other lawyers, the rest being divines, to visit
Oxford, inquire into abuses and delinquencies, impose the Covenant on
Heads of Houses, Fellows, &c., and report the results to a standing
Committee of both Houses, consisting of twenty-six Peers and fifty-two of
the Commons. Under this Ordinance the Visitors issued a citation to the
Heads of Houses and others to meet them in the Convocation House at
Oxford on the 4th of June. That was the day of the Army Rendezvous and of
the King's abduction; beyond which point we do not go at present. Suffice
it to say that there was to be a most strenuous resistance by the
Oxonians, headed by their Vice-Chancellor Dr. Fell. [Footnote: Wool's
Fasti Oxon. II 100-1 and 106-7; Lords Journals, May 1; Neal, III. 395
_et seq._]


Effects of Joyce's Abduction of the King--Movements of the Army: their
Denunciation of Eleven of the Presbyterian Leaders: Parliamentary Alarms
and Concessions--Presbyterian Phrenzy of the London Populace: Parliament
mobbed, and Presbyterian Votes carried by Mob-law: Flight of the two
Speakers and their Adherents: Restoration of the Eleven--March of the
Army upon London: Military Occupation of the City: The Mob quelled,
Parliament reinstated, and the Eleven expelled--Generous Treatment of the
King by the Army: His Conferences with Fairfax, Cromwell, and Ireton--The
Army's _Heads of Proposals,_ and Comparison of the same with the
_Nineteen Propositions_ of the Parliament--King at Hampton Court, still
demurring privately over the _Heads of Proposals,_ but playing them off
publicly against the _Nineteen Propositions:_ Army at Putney--Cromwell's
Motion for a Recast of the _Nineteen Propositions_ and Re-application to
the King on that Basis: Consequences of the Compromise: Intrigues at
Hampton Court: Influence of the Scottish Commissioners there: King
immoveable--Impatience of the Army at Putney: Cromwell under Suspicion:
New Activity of the Agitatorships: Growth of Levelling Doctrines among
the Soldiers: _Agreement of the People--_ Cromwell breaks utterly with
the King: Meetings of the Army Officers at Putney: Proposed Concordat
between the Army and Parliament: The King's Escape to the Isle of Wight,

The effects of Joyce's abduction of the King from Holmby may be summed up
by saying that for the next five months the Army and the Independents
were in the ascendant, and the Presbyterians depressed. There were to be
vibrations of the balance, however, even during this period.

What the Presbyterians dreaded was an immediate march of the Army upon
London, to occupy the city and coerce Parliament. With no wish to resort
to such a policy so long as it could be avoided, the Army-leaders, for a
time, kept moving their head-quarters from spot to spot in the counties
north and west of London, now approaching the city and again receding,
and paying but slight respect to the injunctions of the Parliament not to
bring the Army within a distance of forty miles. On the 10th of June
there was a Rendezvous 21,000 strong at Triplow Heath, near Royston;
thence, on the 12th, they came to St. Alban's, only twenty miles from
London, spreading such alarm in the City by this movement that guards
were posted, shops shut, &c.; and they remained at St. Alban's till the
24th, when they withdrew to Berkhampstead. Through this fortnight
negotiations had been going on between the Army-leaders and Parliamentary
Commissioners who had been sent down expressly; letters had also passed
between the Army-leaders and the City; and certain general
"Representations" and "Remonstrances" had been sent forth by the Army,
penned by Ireton and Lambert, but signed by Rushworth in the name of
Fairfax and the whole Council of War. In these it was distinctly repeated
that the Army had no desire to overturn or oppose Presbyterian Church-
government as it had been established, and only claimed Liberty of
Conscience under that government; but there were also clear expressions
of the opinion that a dissolution of the existing Parliament and the
election of a new one on a more popular system ought to be in
contemplation. Nay, till the time should come for a dissolution, one
thing was declared essential. In order that the existing Parliament might
be brought somewhat into accord with public necessities and interests,
and so made endurable, it must be purged of its peccant elements. Not
only must Royalist Delinquents who still lurked in it be ejected, but
also those conspicuous Presbyterian enemies of the Army who had
occasioned all the recent troubles! That there might be no mistake,
eleven such members of the House of Commons were named--to wit, Holles,
Stapleton, Sir William Lewis, Sir John Clotworthy, Sir William Waller,
John Glynn, Esq., Anthony Nichols, Esq. (original members), and Sir John
Maynard, Major-general Massey, Colonel Walter Long, and Colonel Edward
Harley (Recruiters). This Army denunciation of eleven chiefs of the
Commons, dated from St. Alban's June 14, had greatly perplexed the House;
but in the course of their debates on it they recovered spirit, and in a
vote of June 25 they stood out for Parliamentary privilege. As there had
been votes of the two Houses about bringing the King to Richmond for a
treaty, and other more secret signs of Presbyterian activity, the Army
then again applied the screw. They advanced to Uxbridge, some of the
regiments showing themselves even closer to the City (June 26). This had
the intended effect. The eleven consented to withdraw from their places
in the Commons, for a time at least (June 26); votes favourable to the
Army were passed by both Houses (June 26-29); and, though these were
mingled with others not quite so satisfactory, the Army had no pretext
for a severer pressure. They withdrew, therefore, to Wycombe in Bucks.
Here, at a Council of War (July 1), a Commission of ten officers
(Cromwell, Ireton, Fleetwood, Lambert, Rainsborough, Sir Hardress Waller,
Rich, Robert Hammond, Desborough, and Harrison) was appointed to treat
farther with new Commissioners of the Parliament (the Earl of Nottingham,
Lord Wharton, Vane, Skippon, &c.). Then surely all seemed in a fair way.
[Footnote: Parl. Hist. III. 591-662; Rushworth, VI. 545-597; Godwin, II.
323-354; Carlyle's Cromwell, I. 226-232.]

While Parliament, however, was thus yielding to the Army, the dense
Presbyterianism of the City and the district round was more reckless and
indignant. Whatever Parliament might do, the great city of London would
be true to its colours! Accordingly, in addition to various Petitions
already presented to the two Houses from the Lord Mayor, Aldermen, and
Common Council, all of an anti-Army character, a new one in the same
sense, but purporting to be simply "for payment of the soldiery and a
speedy settlement of the Nation," was presented July 2. A public and
responsible body like the Common Council could express itself only in
such general terms; but the Presbyterian "young men and apprentices of
the City," the number of whom was legion, and whose ranks and
combinations could easily be put in motion by the higher powers, were
able to speak out boldly. On the 14th of July a Petition, said to be
signed by 10,000 such, was presented to both Houses, praying for strict
observance of the Covenant, the defence of his Majesty's person and just
power and greatness, the disbandment of the Army, the thorough settlement
of Presbyterian Government, the suppression of Conventicles, and defiance
to the crotchet of Toleration. This audacious document having been
received even with politeness by the Lords, and only with cautious
reserve by the Commons, the City was stirred through all its Presbyterian
depths, made no doubt it could control Parliament, and grew more and more
violent to that end. Crowds came daily to Palace Yard and Westminster
Hall, signifying their anger at the seclusion of the Presbyterian Eleven,
and at all the other concessions made to the Army and the Independents.
What roused the City most, however, was the acquiescence of Parliament in
a demand of the Army that the Militia of London should be restored to the
state in which it had been before the 27th of April last. On that day the
Common Council, in whose trust the business was, had placed the direction
of the Militia in a Committee wholly Presbyterian, excluding Alderman
Pennington and other known Independents; and what was desired by the Army
was that Parliament, resuming the power, should bring back the
Independents into the Committee. An Ordinance to that effect had no
sooner passed the two Houses,--carried in the Commons by a majority of 77
to 46 (July 22), and accepted by the Lords without a division (July 23),
--than the City broke out in sheer rebellion. By this time there had been
formed in the City and its purlieus a vast popular association, called "A
Solemn Engagement of the Citizens, Officers, and Soldiers of the Trained
Bands and Auxiliaries, Young Men and Apprentices of the Cities of London
and Westminster, Sea-Commanders, Seamen, and Watermen, &c. &c.," all
pledged by oath to an upholding of the Covenant and the furthering of a
Personal Treaty between King and Parliament, without interference from
the Army. A copy of this Engagement, said by Presbyterian authorities to
have been signed by nearly 100,000 hands, with an accompanying Petition
in the same sense, which had been addressed by the Engagers to the Lord
Mayor, Aldermen, and Common Council, was brought before both Houses on
the 24th of July. They declared it insolent and dangerous, and adjudged
all who should persevere in it guilty of high treason. That day was
Saturday, and the next day's Sabbath stood between the Houses and the
wrath they were provoking. But on Monday the 26th they were called to a
mighty reckoning. A Petition came in upon them from the Lord Mayor,
Aldermen, and Common Council, praying for a revocation of the Militia
Ordinance of the 23rd, and enclosing Petitions to the same effect which
the Common Council had received from "divers well-affected Citizens" and
from the "Young Men, Citizens and others, Apprentices." That was not all.
Another Petition came in, from "the Citizens, Young Men, and Apprentices"
themselves, complaining of the "pretended Declaration" of the 24th
against their Engagement, and of the seclusion of the Eleven. Even that
was not all. While the Petitions were under consideration, the Young Men,
Citizens, and Apprentices, with Seamen, Watermen, Trained-Bands, and
others, their fellow-Engagers, were round the Houses in thousands in
Palace Yard, and swarming in the lobbies, and throwing stones in upon the
Lords through the windows, and kicking at the doors of the Commons, and
bursting in with their hats on, all to enforce their demands. The riot
lasted eight hours. Speaker Lenthall, trying to quit the House, was
forced back, and was glad to end the uproar by putting such questions to
the vote as the intruders dictated. The unpopular Ordinance of the 23rd
and the Declaration of the 24th having thus been revoked under mob-
compulsion, the Houses were allowed to adjourn. They met next day,
Tuesday the 27th, but only to adjourn farther to Friday the 30th.
[Footnote: Parl. Hist. III. 664-723; Lords and Commons Journals;
Whitlocke, II. 182-185.]

When the Houses did re-assemble on that day, their appearance was most
woe-begone. Neither Manchester, the Speaker of the Lords, was to be
found, nor Lenthall, the Speaker of the Commons; there were but eight
Lords in the one House; and the benches in the other were unusually thin.
Nevertheless they proceeded in all due form. Each House elected a new
Speaker--the Peers Lord Willoughby of Parham for the day, and the Commons
Henry Pelham, Esq., M.P. for Grantham, in permanence; each took notice of
its absentees, and commanded their immediate re-attendance--the Commons
also restoring the Eleven, Ly special enumeration, to their places; and
each went on for six or seven days, transacting business or trying to
transact it. A good deal of the business related to military preparations
to make good the position the City had taken. Sir William Waller and
General Massey, two of the Eleven, were added to a Committee for
consultation with the City Committee of the Militia; this City Committee
was empowered to choose a commander-in-chief and other commanders of the
London forces; and, when the Committee named Massey for the command-in-
chief, and Waller for the command of the Horse, the Houses gave their
cordial assent. In short, the two Houses, as they met during this
extraordinary week from July 30 to Aug. 5, consisted mainly of a forlorn
residue of the most fanatical Presbyterians in each, regarding the riots
of the 26th as a popular interposition for right principles, and
anxiously considering whether, with such a zealous London round them, and
with Massey, Waller, Poyntz, and perhaps Browne, for their generals, they
might not be able to face and rout the Army of Fairfax. There may,
however, have been some who remained with the residuary Houses on lazier
or more subtle principles. The restored Eleven, with Sir Robert Pye, Sir
Robert Harley, and a few other typical Presbyterians, certainly led the
business of the Commons in this extraordinary week; but among those that
remained in that House how are we to account for Selden? [Footnote: Lords
and Common Journals, July 30-Aug. 5, 1647.]

The City-tumults, intended as such a brave stroke for Presbytery, had
been, in fact, a suicidal blunder. Manchester and Lenthall, the missing
Speakers, though themselves Presbyterians, had withdrawn in disgust from
the dictation of a London mob of mixed Presbyterian young men and
Royalist intriguers, and had been joined by about fourteen Peers, some of
them also eminently Presbyterian, and a hundred Commoners, mostly
Independents. Deliberating what was to be done, these seceders had
resolved to place themselves under the protection of Fairfax, make common
cause with him and the Army, and act as a kind of Parliamentary Council
to him until they could resume their places in a Parliament free from
mob-law. Meanwhile Fairfax, acting for himself, was on the march towards
London. On the day of the tumults in London his headquarters had been as
far off as Bedford; but, starting thence on the 30th of July, he had
reached Colnbrook on Sunday Aug. 1. Next day he came on to Hounslow; and
here it was that, at an imposing Review of his Army, horse, foot, and
artillery, over 20,000 strong, the seceding Peers and Commoners came in,
and were received by the soldiers with acclamations, and cries of
"_Lords and Commons, and a Free Parliament_!" Only ten miles now
intervened between the Army and the Common Council of the City of London
consulting with their Militia commanders at Guildhall, and somewhat less
than that distance between the Army and the presumptuous fragment of the
two Houses at Westminster. Both these bodies, but especially the
citizens, had begun to come to their senses. The tramp, tramp, of
Fairfax's approaching Army had cooled their courage. At Guildhall,
indeed, as Whitlocke tells us, whenever a scout brought in the good news
that the Army had halted, the people would still cry "_One and all_;" but
the cry would be changed into "_Treat, Treat_" a moment afterwards, when
they heard that the march had been resumed. At Hounslow, therefore,
Fairfax received the most submissive messages and deputations, with
entreaties to spare the City. His reply, in effect, was that the City
need fear no unnecessary harshness from the Army, but that the late
"prodigious violence" had brought things into such a crisis that the Army
must and would set them right. Nothing more was to be said: the rest was
action. On the morning of Wednesday, Aug. 4, a brigade of the Army under
Rainsborough, which had been despatched across the Thames to approach
London on the south side, was in peaceable possession of the borough of
Southwark, and had two cannon planted against the fort on London Bridge
till the citizens thought good to yield it up. That day and the next
other defences on the Thames, eastwards and westwards, were seized or
surrendered. On Friday the 6th, Fairfax with his main Army, all with
laurel-leaves in their hats, and conducting the Lords and Commoners in
their coaches, marched in from Hammersmith by Kensington to Hyde Park,
where the Lord Mayor and Aldermen joined them, and so to Charing Cross,
where the Common Council made their obeisances, and thence to Palace
Yard, Westminster. There the two Speakers were ceremoniously reinstated,
the Houses properly reconstituted, and Fairfax and the Army thanked.
Finally, on Saturday the 7th, the grand affair was wound up by another
deliberate march of the Army through the main streets of the City itself,
all the more impressive to the beholders from the perfect order kept, and
the abstinence from every act, word, or gesture, that could give offence.
The Tower was made over to Fairfax on the 9th; and his head-quarters for
some time continued to be in London or its immediate neighbourhood.
[Footnote: Parl. Hist. III. 723-756; Whitlocke, II, 187-193; Godwin, II.

By the Army's march through the City events were brought back so far into
the channel of regular Parliamentary debate, but with Independency
naturally more powerful than ever. All acts done by the two Houses during
the week's Interregnum of riot were voted null; and there were measures
of retaliation against those who had been most prominent in that
Interregnum. Six of the culpable Eleven--viz. Holles, Stapleton, Sir
William Waller, Clotworthy, Lewis, and Long--having fled abroad together,
had been chased at sea and overtaken, but let escape; and Stapleton had
died at Calais immediately after his landing. Massey had gone to Holland,
with Poyntz; but Glynn and Maynard, remaining behind, were expelled the
House, impeached, and sent to the Tower (Sept. 7). Seven out of the nine
Peers who had formed the Lords' House through the wrong-headed week were
similarly impeached and committed--viz. the Earls of Suffolk, Lincoln,
and Middlesex, and Lords Willoughby, Hunsdon, Berkeley, and Maynard. The
Lord Mayor and four Aldermen were disabled, impeached, and imprisoned
(Sept. 24); several officers of the City Trained Bands were called to
account; and one result of inquiries respecting culprits of a lower grade
was an order by the Commons (Sept. 28 and Oct. 1) for the arrest and
indictment for high treason of twelve persons, most of them young men and
apprentices, ascertained to have been ringleaders in the dreadful outrage
on the two Houses on the 26th of July. As there was a "John Milton,
junior" among these young rioters, one would like to have known whether
they were found and how they fared. In truth, however, nothing very
terrible was intended by such indictments and arrests. As the Army's
treatment of the conquered City had been studiously magnanimous, so what
was chiefly desired by the leaders now in power was that, by the removal
from public sight of persons like the Seven in the one House, the Eleven
in the other, and their City abettors, there might be a Parliament and
Corporation reasonably in sympathy with the Army. As respected the
Parliament, this object had been attained. From the reinstatement of the
two Houses by Fairfax, Aug. 6, on through the rest of that month and the
months of September and October, what we see at Westminster is a small
Upper House of from half-a-dozen to a dozen Peers, most of them
moderately Presbyterian, but several of them avowed Independents, co-
operating with a Commons' House from which the Presbyterians had
withdrawn in large numbers, so that the average voting-attendance ranged
from 90 to 190, and the divisions were mainly on new questions arising
among the Independents themselves. [Footnote: Lords and Commons Journals
of dates given, and generally from Aug. 6 to the beginning of November.--
The Peers who formed the Lords' House through this period were the Earl
of Manchester (Speaker), the Earls of Northumberland, Pembroke (whose
error in remaining in the House through the week of intimidation had been
condoned), Kent, Salisbury, Mulgrave, Nottingham, and Denbigh, Viscount
Saye and Sele, and Lords Wharton, Grey of Wark, Howard of Escrick, and
Delawarr, with occasionally Lords Montague, North, and Herbert of
Cherbury. In the Commons I find one division (Sept. 25) when only 41
voted, and another (Nov. 3) when the number rose to 264. At a call of the
House, Oct. 9, note was taken of about 240 absentees; and of these 59,
whose excuses were not considered sufficient, were fined 20_l._ each. A
good few of these were Independents.]

It was on these two Houses that the duty devolved of hammering out, if
possible, a new Constitution for England that should satisfy the Army and
yet be accepted by the King.

It had been a halcyon time with his Majesty since he had come into the
keeping of the Army. He was still a captive, but his captivity was little
more than nominal. Subject to the condition that he should accompany the
Army's movements, and not range beyond their grasp, he had been allowed
to vary his residence at his pleasure. From his own house or hunting-
lodge at Newmarket, whither he had gone from Childersley (June 7), he had
made visits in his coach or on horseback to various noblemen's houses
near; thence he had gone to his smaller hunting-seat at Royston; thence
(June 26) to the Earl of Salisbury's mansion at Hatfield; thence (July 1)
to Windsor; thence (July 3) to Lord Craven's at Caversham, near Beading;
thence (July 15) to Maidenhead; thence (July 20) to the Earl of Bedford's
at Woburn; thence to Latimers in Bucks, a mansion of the Earl of
Devonshire; and so by other stages, always moving as the Army moved,
till, on the 14th of August, he was at Oatlands, and on the 24th at his
palace of Hampton Court. At all these places the freest concourse to him
had been permitted, not only of Parliamentarian noblemen and gentlemen,
and Cambridge scholars desiring to pay their respects, but even of noted
Royalists and old Councillors, such as the Duke of Richmond. His three
young children--the Duke of York, the Princess Elizabeth, and the Duke of
Gloucester--had been brought to see him, in charge of their guardian the
Earl of Northumberland, and had spent a day or two with him at Caversham,
to the unbounded delight of the country-people thereabouts. But, what was
the most agreeable change of all for Charles, he had been permitted,
since his first coming to the Army, to have his own Episcopal chaplains,
Dr. Hammond, Dr. Sheldon, and others, in constant attendance upon him.
These civilities and courtesies had been partly yielded to him by the
personal generosity of the Army chiefs, Fairfax, Cromwell, and Ireton,
acting on their own responsibility, partly procured for him by their
mediation with the Parliament. There had been grumblings in the Houses,
indeed, at the too great indulgence shown to his Majesty in his choice of
chaplains and other company. [Footnote: Herbert's Memoirs (ed. 1813), pp.
37-49; Godwin, II. 349-361.]

What one dwells on as most interesting in the changed circumstances of
his Majesty is that, amid all the concourse of people round him, it was
Fairfax, Cromwell, Ireton, and the other Army chiefs, that could now come
closest to him for purposes of real conference. They were now, indeed,
frequently with him, conversing with him, studying him face to face,
considering within themselves whether it would be possible after all to
come to an arrangement with that man. In their interviews with him they
were most studious of external respect, though Cromwell and Ireton, it
seems, never offered to follow Fairfax in the extreme ceremony of kissing
the royal hand. The King, on his side, showed them every attention, and
would be "sometimes very pleasant in his discourse with them." What was
to come of it all? [Footnote: Herbert, 36, 37; Clar. 614.]

The meetings of the Army-chiefs with Charles were not purposeless. Since
he had been in their keeping they had been carefully drawing up, and
putting into exact expression, certain _Heads of Proposals_, to be
submitted both to him and to Parliament as a basis for Peace, better in
its own nature, and certainly more to the mind of the Army, than those
_Nineteen Propositions_ of July 1646 which had hitherto been the
vexed subject of debate. What these _Heads of Proposals_ were, or
came to be in their complete shape, we know from a final redaction of
them put forth on the 1st of August when the Army was at Colnbrook on its
march upon refractory London. The document is signed by Rushworth, "by
the appointment of his Excellency Sir Tho. Fairfax and the Council of
War," but the penning is Ireton's, and probably much of the matter too.
It is a document of consummate political skill and most lawyerlike
precision. It consists of sixteen Heads, some of them numerically
subdivided, each Head propounding the Army's desires on one of the great
questions in dispute between the nation and the King. Biennial
Parliaments in a strictly guaranteed series for the future, each to sit
for not less than 120 days and not more than 240, and the Commons House
in each to have increased powers and to be elected by constituencies so
reformed as to secure a fair and equable representation of population and
property all over England: this is the substance of the first Head.
Entire control by Parliament of the Militia for ten years, with a voice
in subsequent arrangements, and farther, for security on this matter, the
exclusion from places of public trust for the next five years of persons
who had borne arms against the Parliament, unless in so far as Parliament
might see fit to make individual exceptions: such is the provision under
the second Head. Of the remaining Articles, one or two refer to Ireland,
and others to law-reforms in England. Articles XI.-XIII. treat of the
Religious Question, and are remarkably liberal. They say nothing about
Episcopacy or Presbytery as such, but stipulate for the abolition of "all
coercive power, authority and jurisdiction of Bishops and all other
ecclesiastical officers whatsoever extending to any civil penalties upon
any," and also for the repeal of all Acts enforcing the Book of Common
Prayer, or attendance at church, or prohibiting meetings for worship
apart from the regular Church; and they expressly stipulate for non-
enforcement of the Covenant on any. In other words, the Army, as a whole,
neither advised an Established Church, nor objected to one, nor would
indicate a preference for Presbytery or Episcopacy in the rule of such a
Church, but stood out, in any case and all cases, for Liberty of
Religious Dissent. How far they went on this negative principle may be
judged from the fact that they do not haggle on even the Roman Catholic
exception, but hint that, so far as it might be necessary to discover
Papists and Jesuits and prevent them from disturbing the State, other
means than enforced church-attendance might be devised for that end.
Article XIV. proposes the restoration of the King, Queen, and their
issue, to full "safety, honour, and freedom," when the preceding Articles
shall have been settled, and with no limitation of the regal power except
as therein provided. The remaining two Articles appear therefore
supernumerary. One refers to Compositions by Delinquents, and urges a
generous relaxation of the rates on such, so as not to ruin people for
past faults. So also the last Article recommends a general Act of
Oblivion of past offences, and a restoration of all Royalists to their
full civil rights and privileges, after composition, or, in cases of good
desert, without composition, with only the exception provided in the
second Article.

These _Heads of Proposals_ of the Army strike one as not only
inspired by a far wiser and deeper political philosophy than the
_Nineteen Propositions_ of the Parliament, but really also as
magnanimously considerate of the King in comparison. They are so generous
that we can account for them only by supposing that the Army-chiefs were
really prepared for a fresh trial of government by King, Lords, and
Commons, with the security against renewed despotism furnished by the
Article about the Militia, combined with the Article for a succession of
Biennial Parliaments. Two things are to be observed, however. One is that
the _Heads of Proposals_ were tendered for the English kingdom
alone, "leaving the terms of Peace for the kingdom of Scotland to stand
as in the late [Nineteen] Propositions of both kingdoms, until that
kingdom shall agree to any alteration." But farther, even as respected
England, there was no promise by the Army that the King could avoid the
establishment of Presbytery. Things had gone so far in that direction,
and the majority seemed so determined in it, that the Army neither could
nor did desire to resist a Presbyterian establishment, were it persevered
in by Parliament. Only they were resolved that the creed, discipline, or
worship of that establishment, or of any other, should not be compulsory
either on the King or on any of his subjects. [Footnote: See the _Heads
of Proposals_ complete in Parl. Hist. III. 738-745, and Rushworth,
VII. 731-736 (the paging in this vol. beginning p. 731). Sufficient
attention has not been paid by historians, except perhaps Godwin (II.
373-378), to this great document. Even Godwin resorts to the
extraordinary hypothesis the Proposals were not in good faith, but only a
Machiavellian device of Cromwell and Ireton for detaching Charles from
the Presbyterians and bringing him over to the Army, who could then laugh
at him and the Proposals too. Godwin remarks in particular that, as
Ireton, who penned the Proposals, was "the most inflexible Republican
that ever existed," his self-repression in drawing up such a document,
accepting restored Royalty, and casting away the chance of a Republic,
must have been colossal. In Royalist historians of the seventeenth
century this kind of reasoning was natural, but one is surprised to find
it affecting a mind so able and candid as Godwin's. There is no reason to
doubt that, when the _Heads of Proposals_ were settled, they expressed
the real and deliberate conclusions of the Army chiefs as to those terms
the honest acceptance of which by Charles would satisfy them. Nay, the
publication of them was a service to Charles, by instructing the nation
generally on a better means of dealing with him than the Nineteen
Propositions. See Denzil Holles's amazed opinion of them as "a new
platform of government, an Utopia of their own." (Memoirs, p. 176 _et
seq._). As for Ireton's suppression of his Republicanism, Ireton's
Republicanism, like other people's, probably _grew_.]

The Army Proposals, or the main substance of them, had been the subject
of conversations between Charles and the Army-chiefs, and even of a
formal conference between him and them, on or about July 24, when he was
at Woburn. He had fumed and stormed at the Proposals, telling the
deputation he would have Episcopacy established by law, the Army could
not do without him, its chiefs would be ruined if they had not his
support, and so on. The secret of this behaviour seems to have been that
Charles was at that moment building great hopes on the recent
demonstrations of the City of London in favour of a Personal Treaty with
him in the Presbyterian interest, and was even aware of the attempted
revolution then about to break forth in the form of the London tumults.
It says much for the forbearance of the Army-leaders that they did not
withdraw the Proposals after this first rejection of them by the King. On
the contrary, they were resolved that the King should still have the
option of agreeing with them; they modified them in some points to suit
him; and they were willing that the whole world should know what they
were. Hence the formal redaction of them into the Paper of Aug. 1, at
Colnbrook. Copies of the Paper were then and there delivered to the
Parliamentary Commissioners with the Army; and it was with that Paper
carried before it that the Army continued its march into London.
Accordingly, on the first day of the meeting of the reconstituted Houses
(Aug. 6), the Army's _Heads of Proposals_ were officially tabled in
both (in the Commons by Sir Henry Vane), in order that the Houses might,
if they saw fit, adopt them in future dealings with the King, instead of
the _Nineteen Propositions_. [Footnote: Major Huntingdon's Paper
accusing Cromwell, Parl. Hist. III. 970; Sir John Berkley's _Memoirs of
Negotiations_ (1699), reprinted in Harleian' Miscellany, IX 466-488;
Godwin (quoting Bamfield), II. 378-380; Parl. Hist. III. 737; Commons
Journals, Aug. 6. There is evidence that, between the submission of the
Proposals to the King at Woburn on or about July 24 and their complete
redaction for publication Aug. 1; additions had been made to accommodate
the King. Such additions may have been the two supernumerary Articles
providing for lenity to compounders and a general Act of Oblivion.]

September and October were the months of the complicated negotiation thus
arising. The King was then at Hampton Court, whither he had removed Aug.
24, and where he was surrounded by such state and luxury that it seemed
as if the old days of Royalty had returned. Not only had he his chaplains
about him, and favourite household servants brought together again from
different parts of England; not only could he ride over when he liked to
see his children at the Earl of Northumberland's seat of Sion House; but,
as if an amnesty had already been passed, Royalists of the most marked
antecedents, some of them from their places of exile abroad, were
permitted to gather round him, permanently or for a day or two at a time,
so as to form a Court of no mean appearance. Such were (in addition to
the Duke of Richmond) the Marquis of Hertford, the Earls of Southampton
and Dorset, Lord Capel from Jersey, Sir John Berkley and Mr. Legge and
Mr. Ashburnham from France, and, not least, the Marquis of Ormond, now at
last, by his surrender of Dublin to Parliament, free from his long duty
in Ireland. Save that Colonel Whalley and his regiment of horse kept
guard at Hampton Court, "captivity" was hardly now a word to be applied
to Charles's condition. Whalley's horse, it is true, were but the outpost
at Hampton Court of the greater force near at hand. On the 27th of
August, or three days after the King had removed to Hampton Court, the
Army's head-quarters had been shifted to Putney, and they continued to be
at Putney all the while the King was at Hampton Court. From Hampton Court
to Westminster is twelve miles, and Putney lies exactly half way between;
and the complex problem then trying to work itself out may be represented
to the memory by the names and relative positions of these three places.
At Westminster was the regular Parliament, moving for that policy which
could command the majority in a body of mixed Presbyterians and
Independents of various shades, with Army officers among them; at Putney
midway was the Army, containing its military Parliament, of which the
generals and colonels were the Upper House, while the under-officers,
with the regimental agitators, were the Commons; and at Hampton Court, in
constant communication with both powers, and entertaining proposals from
both, was Charles with his revived little Court. Scotland in the distance
must not be forgotten. Her emissaries and representatives were on the
scene too, running from Parliament to Hampton Court and from Hampton
Court to Parliament, as busy as needles, but rather avoiding Putney.
[Footnote: Rushworth, VII. 789 _et seq._; Herbert, 47-51.]

A very considerable element, indeed, in the now complex condition of
affairs was the interference from Scotland. As the Presbyterian Rising in
London had occasioned great joy in Scotland, so the collapse of that
attempt had been a sore disappointment. Baillie's comments, written from
Edinburgh, where he chanced to be at the time, are very instructive. The
impression in Edinburgh was that there had been great cowardice among the
London Presbyterians, and stupid mismanagement of a splendid opportunity.
Had the Parliament put on a bolder front, had the City stood to their
"brave Engagement," had Massey and Waller shown "any kind of masculous
activity," and above all had not Mr. Stephen Marshall and seventeen of
the London ministers with him separated themselves at the critical moment
from the body of their brethren, and put forth a childish Petition
disavowing all sympathy with the tumults, what a different ending there
might have been! As it was, "a company of silly rascals" (Fairfax's Army
to wit) had "made themselves masters of the King and Parliament and City,
and by them of all England." So wrote Baillie privately, and the public
organs of Scottish opinion had spoken out to the same effect. There had
been Letters and Remonstrances from the Scottish Committee of Estates to
the reconstituted English Parliament, severely criticising the general
state of affairs in England, and complaining especially of the monstrous
insolence of the Army in possessing themselves of the King, and the
expulsion at their instance of the eleven Presbyterian leaders from the
Commons. Were not these acts, though done in England, outrages on
Scotland as well, and against the obligations of the Covenant? The
England with which Scotland had consented to league herself by the
Covenant was a very different England from that which seemed now to be
coming into fashion--an England in which constituted authority seemed to
be at an end, and an Army ruled all! And what an Army! An Army of
Sectaries, driving on for a principle of Liberty of Conscience which
would lead to a "Babylonish confusion," and impregnated also (as could be
proved by extracts from their favourite pamphlets) with ideas actually
anti-monarchical and revolutionary! So, in successive letters, from Aug.
13 onwards, the Scottish Government remonstrated from Edinburgh,
intermingling political criticisms with special complaints, which they
had a better right to make, of insults done by officers and soldiers of
Fairfax's Army to the Scottish envoys in England, and especially to the
Earl of Lauderdale. Nor was the Scottish Kirk more backward. The regular
annual Assembly of the Kirk had met at Edinburgh Aug. 4; and in a long
document put forth by that body Aug. 20, in the form of "A Declaration
and Brotherly Exhortation to their Brethren of England," the anarchy of
England on the religious question is largely bewailed. "Nevertheless,"
they say, after recounting the steps of the happy progress made by
England to conformity with Scotland in one and the same Presbyterian
Church-rule, "we are also very sensible of the great and imminent dangers
into which this common cause of Religion is now brought by the growing
and spreading of most dangerous errors in England, to the obstructing and
hindering of the begun Reformation: as namely (besides many others)
Socinianism, Arminianism, Anabaptism, Antinomianism, Brownism,
Erastianism, Independency, and that which is called, by abuse of the
word, Liberty of Conscience, being indeed liberty of error, scandal,
schism, heresy, dishonouring God, opposing the truth, hindering
reformation, and seducing others; whereunto we add those Nullifidians, or
men of no religion, commonly called Seekers." [Footnote: Baillie, III. 9-
22; Acts of Scottish General Assembly of 1647; Rushworth, VII. 768-771;
and correspondence of Scottish Commissioners in Lords Journals of Aug.
and Sept. 1647. For the escapade of Stephen Marshall and his friends,
referred to by Baillie, see Neal, III. 375-6. While these few of the city
ministers disavowed the tumults, the Westminster Divines as a body merely
mediated in a neutral style to avoid bloodshed (Commons Journals, Aug.

Great as was the influence of the Army on the Parliament it had
reinstated, the extreme Tolerationism of the Army Proposals would have
made their chance hopeless with that body even if left to itself. But
with such blasts coming from Scotland, and repeated close at hand by the
key-bugles of Lauderdale and the other Scottish Commissioners in London,
the Parliament did not dare even to consider the Proposals. To have done
so would have been at once to sever the two nations, enrage the Scots,
and drive them to no one could tell what revenge. To fall back on the
Nineteen Propositions was, therefore, the only possible policy.
Accordingly, on the 7th of September, the Nineteen Propositions, with but
one or two slight alterations, were again ceremoniously tendered to
Charles on the part of the English Parliament and the Scottish
Commissioners conjointly. They desired his answer within six days at the
utmost. "Six or sixteen, it was equal to him," he said to the Earl of
Pembroke, who presented them; and in fact his Majesty's Answer, dated
Hampton Court, was returned Sept. 9. It was that he retained all his
former objections to those now familiar Propositions, and that, having
seen certain "Proposals of the Army," to which "he conceived his two
Houses not to be strangers," he was of opinion that _they_ would be
"a fitter foundation for a lasting Peace." In other words, though Charles
had rejected the Army Proposals when first offered to him, he now played
them against the Nineteen Propositions, ironically asking the Parliament
not to persevere in terms of negotiation that might be regarded as
obsolete, but to agree to a Treaty with him on the much better terms
which had been suggested by their own Army, but which apparently they
wanted to keep out of sight. This for England; and, for what concerned
Scotland, he would willingly have a separate Treaty with the Scottish
Commissioners, if they chose, on those parts of the Nineteen Propositions
which were of interest to the Scottish nation. [Footnote: Rushworth, VII.
796, 802-3, and 810-11; and Lords Journals, Sept. 8 and Sept. 14.]

Parliament was in a dilemma. Was Charles to be taken at his word? Were
the Nineteen Propositions to be flung overboard, and the Army Proposals
publicly brought forward instead? The Presbyterian dread of Toleration,
if not Presbyterianism itself, was still too strong in the Parliament,
and the prospect of a rupture with the Scots was still too awful with
many, to admit of such a course. What was actually done, after twelve
days of hesitation and consultation, appears from three entries in the
Commons Journals of Sept. 21, Sept. 22, and Sept. 23, respectively. Sept.
21: "_Resolved_, That the King, in this Answer of the 9th Sept., given at
Hampton Court, hath denied to give his consent to the Propositions: "such
is the first entry. The second, on the following day, runs thus:" The
question being put, That the House be forthwith resolved into a Grand
Committee, to take into consideration the whole matter concerning the
King, according to the former order, the House was divided. The _Yeas_
went forth: (Lieut.-General Cromwell, Sir John Evelyn of Wilts, tellers
for the _Yea_) with the _Yea_ 84; (Sir Peter Wentworth, Colonel
Rainsborough, tellers for the _No_) with the _No_ 34; so that the
question passed with the affirmative." On the following day, accordingly,
we find "The question was propounded, That the House will once again make
application to the King for those things which the Houses shall judge
necessary for the welfare and safety of the kingdom; and, the question
being put, Whether this question shall be now put, the House was divided:
(Sir Arthur Haselrig, Sir John Evelyn of Wilts, tellers for the _Yea_)
with the _Yea_ 70; (Sir Peter Wentworth, Colonel Marten, tellers for the
_No_) with the _No_ 23: so that the question passed with the
affirmative." As far as one can construe what lies under these entries,
the state of the case was this:--By the King's new rejection of the
Nineteen Propositions (the Army-chiefs aware of the rejection beforehand
and much approving [Footnote: Berkley's Memoirs, Harl. Misc. IX. 478. "We
[Berkley, Ashburnham, &c.] gave our friends in the Army a sight of this
[the King's] Answer the day before it was sent, with which they seemed
infinitely satisfied."]), the Presbyterians were checkmated. Unless they
would vote the King dethroned, they had no move left. The power of moving
then lay with the Independents. Now the more strenuously Republican of
these, including Colonel Rainsborough and Henry Marten, were for not
using the power, either because they desired to break with Charles
entirely, or because they wanted to shut up him and Parliament together
to the Army Proposals absolutely. Cromwell, however, though faithful to
the Army Proposals as the plan ideally best, was not prepared to take the
responsibility of bringing on the crash at once. Might there not be a
temporizing method? Might not the two Houses be asked to cease thinking
of the Nineteen Propositions as a perfected series to which they were
bound in all its parts and items, and to go over the whole business
afresh, selecting the most essential questions of the Nineteen
Propositions and expressing present conclusions on these in new
Propositions to be offered to the King? Haselrig, Evelyn of Wilts, and
others of the Independent leaders, agreeing with this view, and a good
few of the Presbyterians perhaps accepting it gladly in their dilemma,
Cromwell divided the Commons upon it, and obtained his decisive majority
of Sept. 22, confirmed by the as decisive majority of the next day.
[Footnote: Commons Journals of days named.]

The Lords having concurred, Sept. 30, in this motion for a new
application to the King, and the Scottish Commissioners having been duly
informed, the two Houses went on busily, framing the new Propositions,
and, where any differences arose, adjusting them at conferences with each
other. By the 28th of October a good many important propositions had been
agreed to; but, on the whole, one does not see that the terms for Charles
were to be much easier by this route than they had been by the other. In
one matter, however, the Commons _had_ proposed a change. On the
13th of October, a committee having reported on that one of the intended
Propositions which concerned Church-government, and the resolution before
the House being that the King be asked to give his consent to the Acts
for settling the Presbyterian Government, Cromwell had forced the House
to three divisions. First he tried to limit the term of such settlement
to three years, and lost in a small House by a minority of 35 to 38; then
he insisted that _some_ limit of time should be mentioned, and won
by 44 to 30; then he proposed that seven years should be the term, and
lost by 33 to 41, Finally it was agreed that the Presbyterian Settlement
to which the King's consent should be asked should be till the end of the
Parliament next after that then sitting. But on the same day and the
following the question of Toleration also came up, and with these
results: Toleration to be granted of separate worship for Nonconformists
of tender consciences, but not for Roman Catholics, nor any toleration of
the use of the Book of Common Prayer, nor of preaching contrary to the
main principles of the Christian Religion, nor yet of absence on the
Lord's day from worship and hearing of the word of God somewhere. This
was all the amount of Toleration that Cromwell and the Independents even
in October 1647, with an Army at Putney all aflame for Toleration, could
extract from the reluctant Commons at Westminster. The Lords appear to
have hesitated about even so much as this; for it was not till the 2nd of
November that the two Houses came to an understanding on the subject, and
even on the 9th of that month the Lords wanted some additional security
in the form of a "Proposition for suppressing innovations in Religion."
[Footnote: Lords and Commons Journals of dates named; and Rushworth, VII.
843-4 and 853-4.]

Here, to bring the history of the English Church-question to a period for
the present, we may notice one or two contemporary incidents.----On
Saturday, Oct. 2, the Commons had resumed their examination of the
Westminster Assembly's _Confession of Faith_, at the point where
they had left off that work in the preceding May, viz. at Chap. IV. "Of
Creation," (_antè_, p. 545). They passed that chapter and also the
first paragraph of Chap. V., "Of Providence," that day, and resolved to
continue the business next Wednesday and punctually every following
Wednesday till it should be despatched. But Wednesday after Wednesday
came; other business was too pressing; and so the matter hung. This was
the more inconvenient because on the 22nd of October the Assembly
presented to the two Houses their _Larger Catechism_ completed. It
was ordered that 600 copies should be printed for consideration, and that
matter too lay over. In the midst of such delays in Parliament it was
something on the credit side that the SECOND PROVINCIAL PRESBYTERIAN
SYNOD OF LONDON duly met in Sion College on the 8th of November, with Dr.
Seaman for Moderator. It was, indeed, time now for English
Presbyterianism to be walking alone. Gillespie, one of the two Scottish
Divines left last in the Westminster Assembly, had returned to Scotland
in the preceding August; and on the 9th of November it was announced in
the Lords that Mr. Rutherford too was going. In bidding farewell to his
brethren of the Assembly he took care to have it duly recorded in their
books that the Scottish Commissioners, all or some, had been present to
that point and had constantly taken part in the proceedings. The Assembly
was still to linger on, he meant to say, but its best days were over.
[Footnote: Lords and Commons Journals of the dates given; and Neal, III.
354 and 358-9.]

There was no greater mystery all this while than the conduct of Cromwell
and Ireton. Since the King had come to Hampton Court he had been in
continual intercourse with them, either in direct conferences, or by
messages through Mr. Ashburnham and others. The intercourse had been kept
up even after Cromwell's motion of Sept. 22 for re-approaching the King
on the whole question in a Parliamentary way, and while Cromwell was
constantly attending the House and taking part in the proceedings
consequent on his motion. [Footnote: "Sir, I pray excuse my not-
attendance upon you. I feared to miss the House a day, where it's very
necessary for me to be." So wrote Cromwell to Fairfax Oct. 13, the very
day of his three divisions of the House on the duration of Presbytery,
and of the compromise there on Toleration (Carlyle's Cromwell, f. 239).]
What did it all mean? We have little difficulty now in seeing what it
meant. Cromwell, even while urging on the re-application to the King in a
Parliamentary way, had not given up hope that the King might be
constrained into an extra-Parliamentary pact on some basis like that of
the Army Proposals. Might not Charles be wise now in the extremity to
which he saw himself reduced, and accept the prospect, which the Army
scheme held out, of a restoration of his Royalty, under inevitable
constitutional restrictions, but those less galling in many respects, and
especially in the religious respect, than the restrictions demanded by
Parliament? Such, we can see now, were the reasonings of Cromwell and
Ireton, and to such an end were their labours directed. But the world at
the time was suspicious and saw much more. What the English Presbyterians
and the Scots saw was Cromwell wheedling his Majesty into the possession
of himself and his Sectaries, so as to be able to overthrow Parliament
and Presbytery immediately, and then reserve his Majesty for more
leisurely ruin. What the Royalists round the King saw was more. A blue
riband, the Earldom of Essex, the Captaincy-general of all the forces,
the permanent premiership in England under the restored Royalty, and the
Lieutenancy of Ireland for his son-in-law Ireton--how could the Brewer
resist such temptations? Mean rumours of this kind ran about, or were
mischievously circulated, till they affected the Army itself and roused
suspicions of Cromwell's integrity even among his own Ironsides. It was
not only that Colonel Rainsborough, who had opposed Cromwell's motion for
re-opening negotiations with Charles, had since then stood out against
his policy of conciliation, and had been joined by other officers, such
as Colonel Ewer. Despite this opposition in the Council of the chief
officers at Putney, Cromwell and Ireton still ruled in that body. But
among the inferior officers and the Agitatorships a spirit had arisen
outgoing the control of the chiefs, critical of their proceedings, and
impatient for a swifter and rougher settlement of the whole political
question than seemed agreeable to Cromwell. [Footnote: Berkley's Memoirs
(Harl. Misc.) 476, 478; Holles, 184; Baxter, Book I. p.60; Clar. 620;
Godwin, II. 400 _et seq._ See also Major Huntington's Paper of
Accusations against Cromwell and Ireton in Aug. 1648 (Parl. Hist. III.
966-974). Duly interpreted, it is very instructive.]

At Putney the Army, having little to do, had resolved itself into a great
daily debating-society, holding meetings of its own Agitatorships and
receiving deputations from the similar but civilian Agitatorships that
had sprung up in London. Hence a rapid increase among the common soldiers
of the political school of THE LEVELLERS. Of this school John Lilburne,
still in his prison in the Tower, but with the freedom of pen and ink
there, was now conspicuously one of the chiefs. "That the House of
Commons should think of that great Murderer of England (meaning the
King), for by the impartial Law of God there is no exemption of Kings,
Princes, Dukes, Earls, more than cobblers, tinkers, or chimney-sweepers;"
"That the Lords are but painted puppets and Dagons, no natural issue of
Laws, but the mushrooms of prerogative, the wens of just government,
putting the body of the People to pain,"--such were opinions and phrases
collected from Lilburne's and other pamphlets by the Scottish Government
as early as Aug. 13, and then publicly presented in the name of Scotland
for the rebuke of the English Parliament and the horror of the whole
British world. In such phrases we have the essence of the doctrine of the
Levellers, as distinct from the more tentative Democracy of many
contemporary minds. The _Army Proposals_ of Aug. 1 were not for a
total subversion of the English Constitution of King, Lords, and Commons,
but only for a great limitation of the Royal Power, a reduction also of
the power of the House of Lords, a corresponding increase of the power of
the Commons or Representative House, and a broader basing of that House
in a popular suffrage. But, now that the King had rejected the Proposals,
the Levelling Doctrine burst up from its secret beds, and rushed more
visibly through the whole Army. There began to be comments among the
Agitators on the dilatoriness of Cromwell, and especially on his
coquettings with the King. "I have honoured you, and my good thoughts of
you are not yet wholly gone, though I confess they are much weakened,"
Lilburne had written to Cromwell Aug. 13, kindly offering him a chance of
redeeming his character, but otherwise threatening to pull him down from
all his "present conceived greatness" before he was three months older.
Cromwell not having mended his ways, Lilburne had been endeavouring to
fulfil his threat; and by the end of October there was a wide-spread
mutiny through the regiments at Putney. The Army, having its own
printers, had by that time made its designs known in two documents. One,
entitled _The Case of the Army_, was signed by the agents of five
regiments, Cromwell's and Ireton's own included (Oct. 18); the other,
entitled _An Agreement of the People_ (Nov. 1), emanated from the
same regiments and eleven others. Both documents pledged the regiments
not to disband until the Army had secured its rights; and among these
rights were the speedy dissolution of the existing Parliament, and the
reconstitution of the Government of England in a single Representative
House, elected by a reformed system of suffrage, and meeting biennially.
This House was to be supreme in all matters, except five specified
fundamentals which were to be regarded as settled _ab initio_ beyond

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