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lib. 6, pag. 228, 229; as likewise in a Script, published 1622, in the name of the Governour and Company of New England. But they being, at the best, matters very inconsiderable and of small consequence, relating to the plantations that followed after that time, it is judged not worth the while to transcribe out of those imperfect relations any other particulars about those transactions, which may well be looked upon rather as dead and superfluous branches of the body of the following history, than any thing likely to confer much delight to the reader, or benefit to the compiler thereof.

CHAP. IX. Of the plantation at Patuxet, or New Plymouth, in the

year 1620, with the occasions that led thereunto.

The fore mentioned discoveries of the north parts of Virginia, being bruited abroad amongst the western country of Europe, no doubt filled the minds of many with expectations of famous plantations likely cre long to be erected in those parts of the new world : “Est enim natura hominum novitatis avida :" or, whether some divine virtue had inspired them with a desire of being instruments to promote some higher ends than ever as yet had been brought to light-all former attempts for planting those parts being vanished away, or like to come to little. About this time a strange impression was left upon the minds of some religious and well affected persons of the English nation, sojourning in a foreign country, that some place in that remote region might be found out far more convenient for their purpose that seemed studious for reformation, than hitherto they elsewhere either had, or were like to attain unto, under the wings of a foreign state. Which consideration, for as much as it gave the first rise to the flourishing plantations of New England, since erected, we shall in the first place, take a little notice of the occasion that led thereunto.

Notwithstanding the bright and clear rays of the Gospel light, that began to dawn and diffuse themselves through the whole hemisphere of the English nation, promising an hopeful day of reformation to arise upon them after the long night of antichristian darkness, in the glorious reign of our English Josiah, king Edward the 6th, and Queen Elizabeth of blessed and famous memory; yet were not all that had opportunity to sit under the shadow of their royal authority so well satisfied with every part of that so happy and hopeful refor. mation by them begun, as to rest contented, without strenuous endeavours to shape and mould the business of church discipline moreto the primitive pattern. Therefore sundry of them, having wearied themselves with their private contrivements, all the whole reign of Queen Elizabeth, and finding little hope of bettering their con•dition under her successour, resolved to try, if change of air would not afford a remedy to the distemper at last, to their grievances and burdens they laboured under at home. Divers therefore of that persuasion, that had about the year 1602 entered into a private covenant, first in the North of England, then in the Netherlands, Ann. 1610, to walk with God and one with another, according to the best and primitive patterns (as they conceived) of the word of God, finding the low and watery situations of that country as unwholesome and infectious to their bodies, and national views of the place dangerous for their minds, by reason of bad example, as that of their own country, uncomfortable for their purses and estates : By reason of opposition, they at last projected the transporting themselves and their

families into America, hoping by that means that if not all, yet the greatest and more general ends to be aimed at in reformation, might better be provided for, in a place of their own, free from all former inconveniences. The persons engaged in this design were Mr.Robinson's church, that ten years before settled at Leyden in Holland. The said Robinson, to give him his due, was a man of good learning, of a polished wit, and ingenious disposition and courteous behaviour, yet not without great tincture of the spirit of the rigid separation, as is so well known by sundry of his writings, published to the world about those times :

yet doth he deserve commendation in this, that although he had been transported so far with those principles as to publish his opinion against hearing any of the preachers of the Church of England, were they never so learn. ed and pious; yea to that confidence was he arrived, that he began to play with Dr. Ames his name, styling him in one of his pamphlets, “Mr. William Amiss ;” yet after the Doctor had taken him to task, and showed him his great mistake, in his unanswerable piece, called “A manuduction to Mr. Robinson,” and finding himself unable to grapple any longer with so great a master of reason, he submitted, not being willing to speak any thing against the truth, that had been by the help of an antagonist discovered unto him. Yea farther, he came afterwards to acknowledge, and in a judicious and god ly discourse to approve and defend the lawful liberty, if not the duty, in case of hearing the godly preachers of the Church of England. Thus like Paul he preached that, which he had with his pen persecuted before; like some fruit, that before it is ripe is harsh, sour, and unpleasant, till it attain, by the advantage of after time, to the mildness and sweetness of riper age; as was observed in this good man, who, as he grew

in

years, grew in many excellent gifts, both of nature and grace, and great moderation of spirit in regard of what he manifested in former time, which was not often found in them of that rigid persuasion. This passage is intended as rather matter of commendation than reflection upon that eminent person, or any of the Christian brethren of his church. To proceed, therefore, there was one Mr. Brewster, a prudent, grave, and serious Christian, of great experience in things of religion, and a man of a finer alloy than the ordinary sort of the separation, having had no small advantage by his education under Secretary Davison, in the court of Queen Elizabeth, that was joined with the said Mr. Robinson in the eldership, by whose prudence and discretion that church was kept in sweet and entire union and accord, both before and after their parting asunder, contrary to the manner and custom of some of that persuasion in Holland, as may appear by the testimony given them by those, amongst whom they sojourned before in Leyden, as we see, Morton, page 4 of New England's Memorial. The reasons of their removal were debated both in public and private, and found more weighty than could readily be answered, in so much as a very great and considerable part of the church were persuaded to attend the motion, apprehending it to be from God; and if their minds had not been fully satisfied therein, it had been scarce possible for them to have gotten over so many difficulties and sore trials as they encountered with through the whole undertakings.-As for the reasons which prevailed with them to leave Holland, the principal were these

- difference of language, difficulty of subsistence, hazarding of posterity, which they feared might come to pass, and at last occasion their losing their interest in the English nation; they being desirous (how differing soev. er they were in the persuasion of some matters of disci. pline) to live under their natural Prince, and, if it might be, to enlarge his Majesty's dominions; having also some hope and inward zeal by this means to propagate the gospel, promote and advance the kingdom of the Lord Jesus Christ amongst the barbarous inhabitants of these remote parts of the world—in which good work it is hoped they have not failed of their expectation altogether. After they had, upon the reasons afore mentioned, resolved upon their “terminus quo,” viz. to leave Holland, the next and no less difficult question was the "terminus ad quem,” where to find a place, in which they might securely promise themselves a freedom from the former evils they had long groaned under, and an opportunity of enjoying the contrary benefits so much desired, viz. the liberty of a civil as well as ecclesiastical government, which they found by sad experience was not to be obtained or expected in any foreign nation of Europe : therefore they in the general concluded to inquire after some place that had not formerly been inhabited; and again they were divided in their opinions. Some of their company, and those none of the meanest, were for Guiana in the West Indies, a rich and fertile soil or

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country, blessed with a perpetual spring, where the earth bringeth forth abundance of all things necessary for the life of man, with little labour or art.

But the greater part, considering that those hot countries were incident to sundry diseases, and in other respects very unsuitable to English bodies, besides the neighbourhood of Spaniards, which they had little reason to desire, who, though they had not as yet, but soon might, possess themselves of that part of America, and might displant them, as they had done the French in Florida ; therefore it was determined at last to find out some place bordering upon Virginia, then newly or not many years before discovered and planted. There they hoped to find liberty for a distinct colony under the general government of Virginia ; and also the free exercise of their religion, which they conceived probable to be attained by some of their friends, upon suit to his Majesty ; of which they were put in no small hope by some persons of great rank and quality, who were made their friends. In pursuance of this consideration, two were chosen out of their company and sent to England, at the charge of the rest, to solicit the matter; who found the Virginia Company very desirous to promote their going thither, promising to grant them a patent, with as ample privileges, as they had or could grant to any; and some of the chief of that company doubted not but to obtain their suit to the king for lib. erty of their religion, how averse so ever he had always been to the settling of it in England. Sir Robert Nanton, at that time one of the chief Secretaries of State, with some others, who had interest in the Arch Bishop of Canterbury, were employed therein ; by whose mediation they had a promise of a conveniency upon their peaceable carrying under the civil government ; upon which intimation they were encouraged to proceed on, presuming they might be allowed to plant themselves within some parts of those bounds, without molestation. This course they looked upon as most probable, conceiving they might there as safely rest in God's providence, as in other things. Upon this resolution other messengers were sent over to issue the business with

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