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In the Life of the Rev. Philip Henry, written by his son Matthew, the following anecdote is related concerning this tragical occurrence: “ At the latter end of the year 1648, he had leave given him to make a visit to his father at Whitehall, with whom he stayed some time. There he was Jan. 30, when the King was beheaded, and with a very sad heart saw that tragical blow given. Two things he used to speak of, that he took notice of himself that day ; which I know not whether any of the historians mention. One was, that at the instant when the blow was given, there was such a dismal universal groan among the thousands of people that were within sight of it, (as it were with one consent,) as he never heard before ;* and desired he might never hear the like again, nor see such a cause for it. The other was, that immediately after the stroke was struck, there was, according to order, one troop marching from Charing-cross towards King Street, and another from King Street towards Charing-cross, purposely to disperse and scatter the people, and to divert the dismal thoughts which they could not but be filled with, by driving them to shift every one for his own safety. He did upon all occasions testify his abhorrence of this unparalleled action,t which he always said was a thing that could not be justi
portentous aspect, through the negligent supineness or the foreign trifling of those who had been entrusted with the supreme management of affairs civil and ecclesiastical. It was then too late for Charles to indulge in hopes of success, from the uprighteous experiment of applying arbitrary, power as the sole remedy for existing abuses in the body politic; and for Archbishop Laud to expect any salutary results from the severe and objectionable manner in which he seconded his royal master's views with regard to ecclesiastical maladies, and suppressed the unfruitful peculiarities of Calvinism, the latter of which had under various devices been too much encouraged in the reign of his father.”
* It is related concerning Francis Newman, Fellow of All Souls, “ a person of great parts and a good carriage,” that ou passing by Whitehall when the King was decapitated, the horrid act had such an effect upon his spirits, as produced speedy dissolution. For, when he had returned to Mr. Heywood's house at Westminster, who was allied to him by marriage, he fell into a violent agony; and, retiring immediately into his chamber,' he told those friends who surrounded him, (though he was then, to all appearance, as well as he had ever been,).. that he should never stir out of that room
alive, as he felt his heart breaking under the weight of grief which he had conceived at the sight of that murderous deed ; and was oppressed by the . foreboding thoughts of the disastrous consequences which would ensue.' His prognostications were soon verified; and, within a few hours, in that chamber he became a martyr at once to sorrow and to affection for his beloved monarch.-Seethe next nole.
+ Mr. Henry, it is seen, testified his abhorrence, by keeping the anniver. sary of that black day as a fast. Dr. Parr gives the following account of Archbishop Usher's observance of the same day : “He kept the 30th of January as a private fast as long as he lived, and would always bewail the scan dal which the King's death cast, not only on our nation, but on religion itself, saying, that thereby an advantage was given to Popery, and that from thenceforward the priests would with greater success advance their designs against the Church of England and the Protestant Religion in general.
"Nor will it be improper here to relate a passage which happened to the Lord Primate at the time of bis Majesty's execution: The Lady Peter
fied: And yet he said he saw not how it could be called a national sin; for, as the king urged upon his trial, it was certain that not one man of ten in the kingdom did consent to it ; nor could it be called the sin of the long parliament, for far the greatest part of them were all that time, while the thing was in agitation, imprisoned, and kept under a force, and scarce twenty-seven of the forty that were left to carry the name of a parliament, did give their vote for it;* which the commissioners for the trying of the King's judges, in the year 1660, (some of whom had been themselves members of the long parliament,) urged again and again in answer to that plea which the prisoners stood so much upon, that what they did was by authority of the parliament. But
borough's house, where my Lord then lived, being just over against Charing Cross, divers of the Countess's gentlemen and servants got upon the leads of the house, from whence they could see plainly what was acting before Whitehall. As soon as his Majesty came upon the scaffold, some of the household came and told my Lord Primate of it, and asked him if he would see the King once more before he was put to death. My Lord was at first unwilling; but was at last persuaded to go up; as well out of his desire to see his Majesty ouce again, as also curiosity, since he could scarce believe what they told him unless he saw it. When he came upou the leads, the Kiug was in his speech. The Lord Primate stood still and said nothing, but sighed; and lifting up his hands and eyes full of tears towards heaven, seemed to pray earnestly. But when his Majesty had done speaking, and had pulled off his cloak and doublet, and stood stripped in his waistcoat, and that the villains in vizards began to put up his hair, the good Bishop, 210 longer able to endure so dismal a sight, and being full of grief and horror for that most wicked fact now ready to be executed, grew pale and began to faint : so that, if he had not been observed by his own servant and some others that stood near him, who therefore supported him, he had swooped away. So they preseutly carried him down and laid him on his bed, where he used those powerful weapons which God has left his people in such afflictions, namely, prayers and tears; tears, that so horrid a sin should be committed ; and prayers, that God would give his prince patience and constancy to undergo these cruel sufferings : and that he likewise would not, for the vindication of his own honour and providence, permit so great a wickedness to pass unpunisbed."
'* ļo the whole of this palliation of the Long Parliament, may be traced much of the old Presbyterian leaven, which continued to work in the minds even of good men, long after the Restoration, and to support the uncontrollable power of Parliaments. But Judge Jenkins has shewn, page 352, that the two Houses, without a king, “ were no more a PARLIAMENT, than a body without a head is a man.
In his LEX TERRÆ the loyal old Judge gave bis deluded countrymen the following correct information : “ We of the kiug's party did and do detest monopolies, and ship-money, and all the grievances of the people as inuch as any men living. We do well know, that our estates, lives, and fortunes are preserved by the laws, and that the King is bound by, bis laws. We love Parliaments : if the King's judges, council, or ministers have done amiss, they had, from the third of November 1640 to the teuth of January 1641, time to punish them, being all left to justice: where is the King's fault? The law saith, “the King can do no wrong, that he is Medicus Regni, Pater
Patriæ, Sponsus Regni, qui per annulum is espoused to his realm at his • coronation ; the King is God's lieutenant, and is not able to do an unjust • thing :' these are the words of the law.
" One great matter is pretended, that the people are not sure to enjoy the acts passed this Parliament, a succeeding Parliament may repeat them : The objection is very weak; a Parliament succeeding to that may repeal that it is manifest it was done by a prevailing party in the army, who (as he used to express it) having beaten their ploughshares into swords, could not so easily beat their swords into ploughshares again, as having fought more for victory and dominion than for peace and truth : But how far these men were acted and influenced by another sort of people behind the curtain,* the world is not altogether ignorant. For some years after King Charles the Second came in, he observed the yearly day of humiliation for this sin, desiring that God would not lay the guilt of blood to the charge of the nation.”+
Immediately after the murder of his Majesty, a warm dispute arose among the Calvinists, respecting the degree of bloodguiltiness which attached to each of the prevailing parties, the repealing Parliament : That fear is endless and remediless. Parliaments are as the times are. If a turbulent faction prevails, the Parliaments are wicked, as appears by the examples recited before of extreme wicked Parliaments : If the times be sober and modest, prudent and not biassed, the Parliaments are right, good, and honourable, and they are good medicines and salves; but in this [the long] Parliament excessit medicina modum.
“ In this cause and war between the King's Majesty and the two Houses at Westminster, what guide had the subjects of the land to direct them but the laws ? what means could they use to discern what to follow, what to avoid, but the laws? The King declares it treason to adhere to the Houses in this war: The Houses declare it treason to adhere to the King in this war: Treason being such a crime as forfeits life and estate, also renders a mau's posterity base, beggarly, and infamous, the subjects for a great and considerable part of them look upon the laws, and find the letter of the law requires them to assist the King, as before is manifested. Was ever subject criminally punished in any age or nation for his pursuit of what the letter of the law commands ?
“ The subjects of the kingdom find the distinction and interpretation now put upon the laws of abstractum and concretum, Power and Person, body POLITIC and NATURAL, PERSONAL presence and VIRTUAL,- to have been condemned by the law; and so the King's party had both the letter of the law, and the interpretation of the letter cleared to their judgments, whereby they might evidently perceive what side to adhere to: what satisfaction could modest, peaceable, and loyal men more desire ?"
I prefer to quote from Jenkins's pamphlets, rather than from larger treatises, because they serve to shew that no grounds whatever existed for Baxter's republican excuse in a preceeding page, (323) that “the people were many of them uncertain which party was the higher and of greatest authority: Some thought The King, and others thought the PARLIAMENT,” &c. Many of them undoubtedly chose for their own interest to remain uncertain which of these two powers was the greatest ; though they could scarcely be ignorant of the Law of the Land on that point, many thousands of Jenkins's pamphlets having being published in a cheap form and gratuitously distributed among the people.
* This, the reader will perceive, relates to the Papists, who, according to the prediction of Archbishop Laud, page 337, had introduced themselves among
" the several sects and divisions, and brought the Pope a far greater harvest than he could ever have expected without them.” See also the extract from Baxter, page 295.
to “ The villainy of the Rebels proceeding now so far as to try, condemn and murder our excellent king on the 30th of this month, (Jan. 1649,) struck me with such horror, that I kept the day of his martyrdom a fast, and would not be present at that execrable wickedness, receiving the sad account of it from my brother George and Mr. Owen, who came to visit me this afternoon, and recounted all the circumstances.' Evelyn's Diary.
Presbyterians and Independents.* The author of the Sample of True Blue Presbyterian Loyalty, has very equitably awarded the proportion of guilt due to each of them in the subjoined
* From that confused medley of monstrous excuses for rebellion and fanaticism entitled ORME's Memoirs of Dr. John Owen, we are, in the subjoined extract, presented with a striking contrast to the fastings apd humiliating services of Mr. Henry, Mr. Evelyn, Archbishop Usher, and other conscientious men, on that mouruful occasion and its annual return :
“ With some it may be enough to involve Owen in the guilt of the Regicides, that he was employed by them to preach on such an occasion, as the day after the king's death. The apology made by him in regard to another affair is here, perhaps, quite as 'applicable : His superiors were persons
whose commands were not to be gainsayed.' They were aware of the importance of having their conduct sanctioned, even in appearance, by, a preacher of Owen’s respectability ; and on this account, it is probable, he was chosen to discharge a function, which it is impossible to suppose he would have coveted. Perhaps, they expected he would defend or apologize for their measures. If they did, they must have been grievously disappointed, as the discourse maintains a profound and studied silence on the awful transaction of the preceding day. It is founded on Jeremiah xv, 19, 20. ; and was published with the title of · Righteous zeal encouraged by Divine protection ;' from which a direct application to the recent events might be expected. Extremely little of this, however, occurs. The text and context were both very suitable to the circumstances of the country, and, in a general way, he uses them for this purpose. But he is exceedingly cautious of committing himself hy expressing an opinion, either of the court, or the country party; which plainly implies, that while he was not at liberty to condemn, he was unwilling to justify. He tells the parliament very faithfully' that much of the evil wbich had come upon the country, bad originated within their own walls, and warns them against oppression, selfseeking, and contrivances for persecution.".
In this flaming Independent's ever-varying defence of Owen's republican and seditious sentiments, he shews himself in no wise scrupulous concerning the mode adopted by him for the exculpation of his hero. Thus, in the present instance, while endeavouring to prove Owen's cunning and strength of nerve in the moderation of the eulogy which he pronounced on the murderers of his lawful sovereign, he has recourse to the preposterous trick of representing him as a complete time-server : For he makes this open avowal, “ The apology made by Owen in regard to another affair, is here perhaps quite as applicable. His superiors were persons whose commands were not to be gainsayed !" Such an injudicious eulogist and defender, as Mr. Orme, .can see no iinpropriety in complying with “ the commands of superiors, when they are issued for palliating murder and rebellion. Even hy' his own showing, what a stain is this upon the character of the supple preacher! A vast difference may here be perceived between the couduct of Owen and that of a naturalized foreigner, Meric CASAUBON, the worthy and loyal son of the famous Isaac Casaubon, concerning whom it is said : “ In 1649 [the very year in which Owen's sermon was preached,] Mr. Greaves of Grays Inn, an intimate friend of our author, brought him a message from Oliver Cromwell, then Lieutenant General of the Parliament Forces, to bring him to Whitehall to confer with him about matters of moment, but his wife being then lately dead, and not, as he said, buried, he desired to be excused. Mr. G. afterwards came again; and our author fearing some bad consequence of the affair, desired to know the meaning of it, with which Mr. G. refused to acquaint him. But at last, returning, he told him, ' that the • Lieutenant General intended to promote him, and to employ, his pen in
writing the bistory of the late war, desiring at the same time that the mat
ters of fact might be iMPARTIALLY represented.' Dr. Casaubon returned his hearty thanks for the honour iutended him, but declared, 'that he was iné capable in several respects for such an employment, and could not so im
partially engage in it but that his subject would oblige him to make such s reflections as would be ungrateful, if not injurious, to his lordship’ Not