Page images
PDF
EPUB

formerly cozened divers by those arts, none would trust me, as being by all suspected, whom they eluded, as though seeking to intrap them. Thus abandoned and forsaken by every body, I departed out of the communion of the church, these last words before my death ingeminating, All is marred, all is marred, monks, monks, friars, friars. My burial was just like that of Ahab, in the ruins of a religious house;"for, when my body was conveyed hitner, even a dunghill through over-eating and oppletion, the lead, in which it was wrapped, unhappily unsoldering, as it was set down within the ruins of this house, where, while a plumber, in all baste to help, ran this way and that way for materials, his dog licked up my blood most greedily. A revenge for that of priests and religious which I shed, Oh God! how just and deserved a one? Dost thou not see, Charles, how, in my person thus suffering, God hath warned thee that I departed not unpunished?

Car. These are things very grievous indeed, and which deserve to be well pondered to all eternity.

Hen. But, though these things may seem to mortals very grievons, yet, in comparison of what I suffer in hell, they are mere trifles, and not worthy to be commemorated. For, besides what I bave merited by my own, whatsoever I have sinned against another, what innovations l have forced upon religion, superadd unto the increase of my torments; inas. much as,by my usurping the supremacy,I opened a gap to all the mischiefs of heresies. Wherefore as, superadditionally, I am here tormented by the arrival of any new come ghosts, so is it just, since the afflicted comfort the afflicted, that those very same should have a share in my punishments, who have maintained and kept on foot my errors, as thou hast done; who, though the scourge of heaven's just ire, hath these ten years through three kingdoms closely followed thee, and that too chiefly, for thy hatred to religion, yet hast thou breathed with thy last breath a disobedience to the authority of the see of Rome, thy bishop so of London persuading thee; nay, morcover, not the primacy only which I left thee, but new errors, introduced by Queen Elisabeth and thy father, didst thou strive to uphold, of Prince Edward 1 here wittingly am silent; and if other things be true which I have heard, thou stampest thy.coin also with the inscription of protestancy.

Car. Oh heavens! that that fatal protestancy had never been hatched, at least not to come unto my ears. It began, about thy time, in Germany, when the followers of Luther were called protestants, whence it afterwards passed into England. And as Queen Elisabeth, oh Henry! and my father, were the first of all those who went before them who protested thy religion in these kingdoms, whereupon hath come this name of protestant: So, soon after, rose the puritan faction, or the Calvinist, who impugned both the other,aud our ritual,or book of common prayer, set in force with the thirty-nine articles. Which, subverting all episcopal jurisdiction, doth yet glory in being called protestant. Afterwards springs a sect of independants, which protest against the three that went before; these are divided into hundreds of other tatterdimallion and new broached opinions, which yet all will needs be termed protestants ; and perhaps as many more there will yet rise, from out the hydra of this unbappy reformation, which will always be impugning one the othet, Heaven grant, that, with the milk of my mother, I had also sucked in the religion of my ancestors; for my grandmother not only died a Catholick, but shed her blood in the defence of that religion, But, as others may condignly have been punished, for introducing or promoting of errors; for vexing with much cruelty the Catholicks, and usurping or maintaining this supremacy; I certainly never innovated religion, of all others have been mildest unto Catholicks, nay, even next of all acceded to their tenets. In fine, I have exercised this supremacy with a moderation surpassing all the rest, and (by reason I did not judge it fitting or becoming any layman's undertaking) the whole charge thereof, at least the greater part, I recommended to the Archbishop of Canter bury.

Éen. But hast thou not observed, that, of the whole English episcopacy, only Canterbury in these troubles lost his head; (both documents of the highest instruction!) Thou for Kings, and that patriarch for prelates; who, if their heads they would have stand upon their shoulders, must not make themselves heads of the church, by hereafter prejudicing the Roman jurisdiction. But what availed it thee to bave approximated unto popery, unless thoroughly thou hadst embraced that faith? For it sufficeth not to stand in the porch, unless thou enter into the busom of the church. Moreover, many, in these gulfs below the earth, are much more grievously tormented and vexed, because they knew, but have not exercised the truth. That, in some things, King Agrippa was a Christian, was not sufficient to work his salvation. No, for that thoroughly he was not converted by Paul, he now burns with me in eternal flames. Did I not myself sometimes profess that faith in all particulars, only abstracting from the pope's supremacy? But, sin. ning in that one sole defection, I anı guilty of all other abominations. But he that spared not Paul's incredulity (doing things of which he then was ignorant) will not spare this most execrated head of mine, who have wittingly, nay, and willingly,perished. But, how frivolous is that which thou pretendest to extenuate the malice of thy crime, when thou sayest, thou didst not exercise the supremacy, only left it unto Canterbury to do it; as though, indeed, thou hadst not exercised that charge whereunto thou hast deputed another? Nay, more, I hold that Strafford lost his head (so provided by the eternal justice) for that also he then carsied thinc, as being thy vicar, in the church of Ireland.

Car. As I have not wholly been exempt from all faults, so having proceeded much more moderately in the supremacy, and promoted more the peace of the church, than all these others, who have passed before me, I would fain know why I am the most of all punished ?

Hen. Thou hast not observed, it seems, that jealous God, who punisheth in the child the father's faultiness, how he scourgeth the impieties of the wicked, to the third and also fourth generation, lest, if only he should scourge us in ourselves, we might think that any enormous impiety would be easily and more suddenly expiated; nor defers he to punish (till so long after, that his memory who sinneth should die, but lest it should be forgotten that he was punished for sinning. Thou art the third now, from the cradle of schism, who hath reigned King, in which generation thou sufferest. For

though my two daughters, first Mary, then Elisabeth, have successively inberited the crown, yet those twn, with their brother King Edward, who who was my son, make up but one generation; if you number therefore either the Kings or generations ;---Edward me, James him, and thou James, have successively and in order followed. Nor hath it happened, but by the hand of God, that the heavenly vengeance should have fallen upon thy head, the most innocent and moderate of all the rest, to shew that not so much thy private sins have been chastised by his rod of justice, as the hereditary evils of thy office, with what impieties still attend thy titles,---as it is said,---- The fathers have eaten sowre grapes, and the teeth of their children have been set on edge,' Ezek. xvii. Which take not as though children intirely innocent should be overwhelmed by their fathers faultiness; for the soul that sins itself shall die; but that such who are less faulty, nay, even innocent, as it were, in comparison of their fathers' crimes, do yet suffer often something of their merit. For, if that punishment had happened in the time of any wicked and luxurious prince, I should not have sought for its infliction any where else, than from the crimes of such a trussed-up potentate. But that my subjects, who stile themselves protestants, should, by taking off thy head, thus punish thee whom thy very enemies cannot asperse with any crime, came not indeed by any other way to pass, but through that capital transgression of our pride, in presuming to be heads of the church : and, as I was the last of my name both King and also head of the church, so thou, oh! too unfortunate Charles, art the first of thy name that ever reigned, and the last that shall be head of the church.

Car. I feel indeed the judgments of God to have fallen very heavily upon me, for, as out of one false principle in faith many absurdities arise of opinions, so out of one unhappy apostasy from the church, many others have followed after at the heels, which the newer and more recent that they are, the more dangerous, and more to be took heed of. Thou begannest, others increased that sacrilege, which when, afterwards, some had fully perfected, I at last bore the heft of all. Thou, tearing from the Roman obedience thy people and bishops of England, wouldest be accounted, aye, and wert, independent; and the head of the reformed church? Now a sect of independants hath broke out, God revenging so the sin of thy sacrilege, who, regarding neither King nor bishops, first took off' my spiritual head, then my own cut and severed from my shoulders; one Cromwell in thy time then lived (of thy cabinet and most see cret counsels) who persuaded thee, a King, to spoil the church; now another of that name, and not unlike him, forced the people to destroy their King. 'Oh how just are the judgments of God and his ways inscrutable! For, if not sooner in ourselves, in our posterities, shall we at last be punished, in that very kind in the which we have offended. Oh God, that, whilst I lived in this world, I had seriously pondered these things, at the least (when so much leisure sometimes served me) in the time of my most tedious imprisonment! Happy man, had I paused upon the series of God's judgments, from above so threatening me, in the amaritude and bitterness of my soul: I had leisure, indeed, to dally with my pen, and write a book of other things, a whole one, as my armies how they came to be destroyed, of the miseries and distresses of my life, and the insolencies those especially of the soldiers, but never once called to mind those very things which I should most of all have printed on my thoughts. Oh Juxonius (so I called the bishop of London) or else Laud my faithful counseller and friend, why have neither of you admonished me of these things, either by letters, or friends that did commune with me? For, being three years a prisoner before ny death, I had time enough to think of all these things. But they had eyes, and they could not see.' Oh, how blind were all these that saw me! and well may what follows be applied to us:

* At length we Phrygians (but too late) grew wise.' Hen. This also I would have men duly ponder, how the parliament, the very name whereof is so idolised, especially by the fascinated English, is devolved now into a lower house, both the bishops and the lords ejected, in whose votes was once the total authority, the House of Commons being not any thing regarded. A just punishment indeed for their flattering me into a presumption of being head of the church, who themselves are now all trodden under foot (sometimes sitting as the heads of parliament) and this by that third order, without order, unto which they are so shamefully subjected. For England, as now plainly it appeareth,from a paradise is translated into a hell,in which no order but perpetual horror inhabiteth, where 'a man strong in arms keeps our court, and holds peaceably his usurped pussessions. This third order being grown to that height, that kingly government which had its period in thy fate, unless by miracle, can never hold up its head.

Hence learn, Oye Kings, to be wise, and take instructions, you that judge the earth

The soldiers, then at hand, of Cromwell, understanding this hard fate of monarchy, which should hardly ever rise from out of its ruins, took good heart, and, with great noise and laughter, ran in crouds from out the church of Windsor, each one glad that he had lent a hand, by cutting off this head of the church, to the execution of the heavenly justice. But not knowing or less, happily, ruminating, that the father, oftentimes, burns the rod with which he doth chastise his child.

In malevolos hujus narratiunculæ obtrectatores,
ZOILE, ne laceres morsu mea scripta canino,

Neve meris dicis omnia suta dolis:
Extimus historiæ cortex, volo, fictus habetor;

Vera sed huic intus ligna subisse scies.
Istaque corporeis licèt auribus invia nostris,

Mentis at internis sensibus hausta putes.
Eia, age, mendacem me, carptor inepte, poetam
Occine: narranti res dabit ipsa fidem.

R. P.

Zoilus, desist (with currish teeth) to tear,
This work of mine, nor it as (merely) jear,

Made up of frauds. The utmost bark, indeed,
Is fiction, but truth dwells in the inside.
And what th' ear struck not outwardly, that (know)
Our minds most inward sense both heard and saw,
Cease critic then, nor sing my book hath ly’d,
'That story will find faith, which truth doth write.

G, T.

An extract out of the eighth century of Michael Nostradamus's prophecies, Stroph. 71. printed in the year 1603, in the beginning of King James's reigti, father of King Charles late deceased, touching the goverment now at present in England:

A warrior, not a King, shall England awe,
One low born shall by force thy empire sway.
Loose, faithless, lawless, shall the earth begore,
Whose time's so near at hand; I sigh therefore.

Glory be to God.

For Speeck of Richard Cromwell, see Vol. 1. Page 25.

THE

COAT OF ARMS

OF

SIR JOHN PRESBYTER,
Privted in the year 1858. Folio, containing one page.

HE ;

over all honour, profit, pleasure counterchanged; ensigned with a helmet of ignorance, opened with confidence befitting his degree, mantled with gules and tyranny, doubled with hypocrisy over a wreath of pride and covetousness; for his crest a sinister hand, holding up a soJemn league and covenant, reversed and torn ; in a scroll, underneath the shield, these words for his motto, Aut hoc aut nihil.

This coat armour is dupalled with another of four pieces, signifying thereby his four matches.

The first is of the family of Amsterdam; she bears for her arms, in a field of toleration, three Jews heads proper, with as many blue caps on them.

The second is of the house of Geneva; she bears for her arms, in a field of separation, marginal notes on the bible false quoted.

« PreviousContinue »