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the design. He had taken it into his head that the nation might be governed without parliaments; or at least, that they were only the tools of the sovereign to furnish him with money. He had dissolved three in the four first years of his reign; and even signified his intention of calling no more. Twelve years passed without one parliament summoned ; during which the king levied taxes upon his subjects at pleasure; and by his conduct discovered a design of reigning in an arbitrary manner. Unhappily for him, he took too near his person and council two men seasoned with the same maxims, who pushed him still further down the precipice, Laud archbishop of Canterbury, and Wentworth earl of Strafford.”Rapin, Vol. XIV. p. 406.

“ He not only refused to redress such grievances as had crept in during his father's reign, but increased their number, by adding others more intolerable. He affected to let his subjects see, not only that he was not moved with their grievances, but that it was an offence to pray him to redress them. He gave to understand very plainly, both by his speeches and conduct, that he looked upon parliaments only assemblies appointed purely to supply him with money, and that in case of a refusal he might proceed without their assistance."-Rapin, Vol. x. p.9.

“In the first fifteen years of his reign continual breaches were made in the constitution, and the nation's liberties invaded. Within the space of a year two parliaments are summoned and dissolved in displeasure, for presuming to meddle with grievances, and call the king's ministers to account. In the fourth year of this reign, another parliament is also for the same reason dismissed, with a reproaclıful and threatening speech,

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and such members as had given offence are imprisoned and fined. After this the king governed twelve years without a parliament: in which interval the bulwark of the national liberties, the power of raising money, is not only assumed and vigorously exercised by the crown, but methods used to that end are pronounced legal by the judges, and preached as obligatory to the subjects conscience by some of the clergy. During these incroachments upon the rights of the people, and the king's tacit renunciation of the constitution by the disuse of parliaments, jealousy and discontent spread themselves in the nation, and all true lovers of their country earnestly longed for an opportunity to rescue the constitution from entire destruction.”Tindal's Cont. Int. p. 3, 4.

“ From the manner in which the king governed for fifteen years, one cannot but be convinced that he intended to alter the government, and procure for himself and successors a power much more extensive than what was allowed him by the laws, and to which none of his predecessors, except Richard II. had ever pretended. I except not even Henry VIII. the most absolute of all the kings of England since William the Conquerer. But there was this difference betwixt Henry VIII. and Charles I. Henry did whatever he pleased by way of parliament; whereas Charles pretended to rule without parliaments, looking on them as little necessary to the constitution of the government."--Rap. Fol. xi. p. 112.

His privy-council set up by degress for an absolute court, which did not look upon itself as obliged to be subject to the laws. The star-chamber was another court, the most rigorous that ever was, the severity whereof fell chiefly upon those who pretended to dispute the prerogative-royal. The high-commission was perfectly of a piece with

the other two; and under a colour of putting a stop to schism, oppressed, as puritans, those who refused to submit to a despotic power.”—— Rap. Vol. x. p. 247.

And here one cannot but observe with Lord Clarendon, “ that a man shall not unprofitably spend bis contemplation who considers, on this occasion, the method of God's justice; a method terribly remarkable in many passages, that the same principles and the same application of those principles, should be used to the wresting all sovereign power from the crown, which the crown had a little before made use of for the extending its authority and power beyond its bounds, to the prejudice of the just rights of the subject.”— Clarend. Vol. II. p. 542.

CHAP. IV.

The Confusion and Civil War proceeded not from

any Religious Sect or Party amongst the People; but solely from the Oppressions and Ty. ranny of the Court.

NO man, says Lord Clarendon, can shew me a source from whence these waters of bitterness more probably flowed, than from the unreasonable, unskilful, and precipitate dissolution of parliaments, especially as the king had publicly' declared, That he would account it presumption for any man to prescribe any time to his majesty for parliaments--which words were generally interpreted as if no more assemblies of that nature were

and such members as had given offence are imprisoned and fined. After this the king governed twelve years without a parliament: in which interval the bulwark of the national liberties, the power of raising money, is not only assumed and vigorously exercised by the crown, but methods used to that end are pronounced legal by the judges, and preached as obligatory to the subjects conscience by some of the clergy. During these incroachments upon the rights of the people, and the king's tacit renunciation of the constitution by the disuse of parliaments, jealousy and discontent spread themselves in the nation, and all true lovers of their country earnestly longed for an opportunity to rescue the constitution from entire destruction.”Tindal's Cont. Int. p. 3, 4.

“From the manner in which the king governed for fifteen years, one cannot but be convinced that he intended to alter the government, and procure for himself and successors a power much more extensive than what was allowed him by the laws, and to which none of his predecessors, except Richard II. had ever pretended. I except not even Henry VIII. the most absolute of all the kings of England since William the Conquerer. But there was this difference betwixt Henry VIII. and Charles I. Henry did whatever he pleased by way of parliament; whereas Charles pretended to rule without parliaments, looking on them as little necessary to the constitution of the government.”--Rap. Fol. xi. p. 112.

His privy-council set up by degress for an absolute court, which did not look upon itself as obliged to be subject to the laws. The star-chamber was another court, the most rigorous that ever was, the severity whereof fell chiefly upon those who pretended to dispute the prerogative-royal. The high-commission was perfectly of a piece with

the other two; and under a colour of putting a stop to schism, oppressed, as puritans, those who refused to submit to a despotic power."- Rap. Vol. x. p. 247.

And here one cannot but observe with Lord Clarendon, “that a man shall not unprofitably spend his contemplation who considers, on this occasion, the method of God's justice; a method terribly remarkable in many passages, that the same principles and the same application of those principles, should be used to the wresting all sovereign power from the crown, which the crown had a little before made use of for the extending its authority and power beyond its bounds, to the prejudice of the just rights of the subject.”— Clarend. Vol. 11. p. 542.

CHAP. IV.

The Confusion and Civil War proceeded not from

any Religious Sect or Party amongst the People; but solely from the Oppressions and Tyranny of the Court.

“ NO man, says Lord Clarendon, can shew me a source from whence these waters of bitterness more probably flowed, than from the unreasonable, unskilful, and precipitate dissolution of parliaments, especially as the king had publiclydeclared, That he would account it presumption for any man to prescribe any time to his majesty for parliaments--which words were generally interpreted as if no more assemblies of that nature were

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