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General 't At this time or impossiberformane pron
for opposing Popish tenets. One day the General had to give orders for searching a fanatic's, on another a cavalier's, house, for arms; whilst contrary propositions assailed him from all quarters. Sometimes, I fear me, he was forced to give assurances he could not keep; yet many that were led by their hopes, like that Pagan, who was for turning Christian if he might be Pope of Rome, were nevertheless to be cherished. But great men are not to be commended for nursing airy hopes in those who sue to them for favours. Much more praiseworthy was the frankness of William, late Duke of Hamilton, who used tell suitors to their faces, and at once, if he disrelished their proposals, that he would not grant their prayers, but appear against them. All parties, as I said, visited the General ; all sought to promote their own ends, and all went away laden with promises. Now, if he could have made good the performance, I dare boldly affirm he would ; and, for impossibilities, one must allow a dispensation. At this time, also, endeavours were made to induce the General to assume the government; but he renounced these suggestions with great anger and aversion, holding it more just, as well as safe, to be an honest subject than a great usurper. He had too lately seen the pageantry of Oliver, who had acted the prince, with the scorn of the whole nation, and had gone out in a stink, like the snuff of a candle. He knew, too, that crowns are the “gift of heaven to peculiar families,” not to be snatched and violated by rebels and traitors.
On the 17th day of March, the parliament dissolved itself, to the great comfort of the people, who did acknowledge their latter end to have been better than their beginning, inasmuch as they had now laid a happy foundation for the return of majesty.
About this time, Sir John Greenvill did apply himself to the General at St. James's, and delivered a letter from his majesty, inviting the General's best endeavours towards his restoration ; which the king did promise to himself with more than ordinary assurance, because the General was a gentleman of education and principles very different from those of certain persons whom his majesty had sometimes dealt witha). The General, who loved to do and not to talk of business, nevertheless, in their private conference, did give Sir John a relation of the great difficulties he had met with in his undertaking ; that even at present he was encompassed with circumstances of no small danger, and that secrecy was his best security; so that he did not judge it expedient to write, but bid Sir John assure his majesty, that he would die or bring him home to his royal inheritance ; for, notwithstanding a “ deluge of treason and rebellion had blotted loyalty almost out of the whole nation, yet he kept a copy in the library of his heart, to have it re
VOL. XIV. PART I.
printed in a more fair and legible edition;" adding, withal, many pieces of advice, and particularly that his majesty's declaring for an act of indemnity, an act for confirming the public sales, and for liberty of conscience, would make him welcome home to all degrees and conditions of men. Sir John sailed “ then for Flanders, fraught with great joy and content to his majesty and friends.” The General, whom no prosperity made secure, thinking he had never enough provided against danger, caused an address to be drawn up, which professed absolute and unlimited obedience to his excellency himself, to the council of state, and to the parliament about to meet. This was to be offered to all officers and privates in the three nations; and they who refused it were to be cashiered. This was cheerfully consented to by the Scotch officers, and most of the English.
On the 9th of May, the day after this address was presented to the General by the army, he despatched away Mr. Bernard Greenvill to his majesty, with his humble letters, acknowledging his duty and allegiance, humbly thanking his majesty for his good opinion, and giving assurance, that he would restore his majesty at the hazard of his life, and do it without any previous conditions; for that being such an adorer of majesty, he could not endure to see it shackled with any limitations or exceptions whatsoever ; so that he should return a free and absolute monarch to his ancient kingdoms. And this was a wisdom that none can blame but the enemies of the whole proceeding; forwas it not right that all favours to the people should flow from the king's bounty, not their own bold importunity ? Indeed, we must acknowledge, that we hold our lives of his majesty's clemency; and that our free pardon was the act only of his majesty's goodness.
On the 25th of April, the parliament assembled, wherein the General represented his native county of Devon, having been elected also for the University of Cambridge. Here did he sit, not like a great commander, but an humble subject; not to dictate to, or controul the house, but to submit to their votes, as to the oracle of the people of all England, without interposing any entreaty in opposition to their declared pleasure. And this carriage of his was so grateful to the house, that they would have voted him some distinction by way of an eternal memorial of the General's service; but that it was thought best to leave a business of that nature to his majesty, who was known to be a liberal rewarder and a bountiful master, overdoing with his compensations the greatest services of his subjects, and thinking it to be the duty of kings, rather to oblige all the world, than to be in any debt for service to any ; which did afterwards fully appear. The General's humility was a prophetic virtue, that foreshewed his greatness : kings are in
in this like Gods, who love not to encourage pride, and the bold challenges of pretended deservers.
On the 27th of April arrives Sir John Greenvill, with letters from his majesty to the House of Lords, and to the Speaker of the House of Commons, which were received with the greatest imaginable joy and thankfulness. To these were returned acknowledgments of duty and allegiance, with presents of many thousand pounds from parliament and city, and earnest invitations to his majesty, “ to hasten over to his poor distressed subjects, who did all languish for his majesty's presence ;" for, till this time, these unhappy nations had been without a head, and were sick at heart. Men may fancy golden dreams, but 'tis religion and justice that make a people happy; - to give God the things that are God's, and Cæsar the things that are Cæsar's.
" I must now leave all reflections, for kings are Gods, according to Scripture, and their counsels are divine ; and we must not pry into them, but renounce and adore them at the greatest distance. There are boundaries set to honest subjects, which are fenced with loyalty, and which they must not pass, to profane the counsels of princes."
END OF PART I. VOL. XIV.
Vol. XIV. Part II.
Art. 1.—Henrie Cornelius Agrippa, of the Vanitie and Un
certaintie of Arts and Sciences : Englished by Ja. San. Gent. · Imprinted at London by Henrie Bynneman, dwelling in · Knightryder Street, at the signe of the Mermayde. Anno 1675.
It is somewhat paradoxical, that one of the most intellectual men of his day should have deducted some of the few leisure hours of a most active and multifariously occupied life, in declaiming against those very arts and sciences to which he owed, in a great degree, his high and well-earned character. The mystery may, however, in some measure be cleared up, by a knowledge of the leading features of the part he played in the caravansera of human existence; and when we see into what an infinity of dangerous predicaments his talents and acquisitions led him, directly or indirectly, he may, we think, stand excused for considering arts and sciences not merely as simple vanities, but as a species of edged tools, to be handled with the utmost care and circumspection. He may, moreover, possibly have agreed by anticipation with the poet :
“ At thirty, man suspects himself a fool;
Knows it at forty, and reforms his plan.” We doubt, however, whether Cornelius was exactly one of these self-condemning philosophers, who either did, or ought to have, entertained so humble an opinion of himself. If folly there was, the fault was not at his door; his procreators were alone to blame, in sending him into the world at least three centuries before the period suited to the developement of faculties like
VOL. XIV. PART II.