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red to any considerable office in the court, who have been of any intimate acquaintance, or suspected to have any kindness for me; and most of them most notoriously known to have been very long my cnemies, and of different judgments and principles from me, both in church and state, and who have taken all opportunities to lessen my credit with the king, and all other persons, by misrepresenting and misinterpreting all that I said, or did, persuading men, that I had done them some prejudice with his majesty, or crossed them in some of their pretensions, though his majesty's goodness and justice were such, that it made little impression up

on him.

In my humble opinion, the great misfortunes of the kingdom have proceeded from the war, to which, it was most notoriously, known, that I was always most averse. And I may, without va. nity, say, I did not only foresee, but did declare the mischief, we should run into, by entering into a war before any alliances with neighbouring princes; and, that it may not be imputed to his ma. jesty's want of care, or the negligence of his counsellors, that no such alliances were entered into, I must say, that his majesty left nothing unattempted, in order thereunto; and knowing very well, that France resolved to begin war upon Spain, as soon as his catbolick majesty should depart the world; which being much sooner expected by them, they had, in two winters, been at great charge in providing plentiful magazines of all provisions upon the fron. tiers, that they might be ready for the war. His majesty used all means possible to prepare and dispose the Spaniards with that apprehension, offering his friendship to that degree, as might be for the security and benefit of both crowns. But Spain, flattering it. self, that France would not break with them, at least, that they would not give them any cause, by administering matter of jealousy, never made any real approach to make friendship with his majesty, but, both by their ambassadors here, and his majesty's ambassador at Madrid, always insisted, as preliminaries, upon the giving up of Dunguirgue, Tangier, and Jamaica.

Though France had an ambassador here, to whom a project for a treaty was offered, and the Lord Hollis, his majesty's ambassador at Paris, had used all endeavours to persue and prosecute the said treaty ; yet it was quickly discerned, the principal design of France was to draw his majesty into such a new alliance, as might advance their design, without which, they had no mind to enter into the treaty proposed ; and this was the state of affairs, when the war was entered into with the Dutch ; from which time, neia ther crown continued the making an alliance with England. did, from my soul, abhor the entering into this war, so I never presumed to give any advice or counsel for the way of managing of it, but by opposing many propositions, which seemed, by the late Lord Treasurer and myself, to be unreasonable, as the payment of seamen with tickets, which added to the expence.

My enemies took all occasions to inveigh against me, and (mak. ing of friendship with others out of the council of more licentious

VOL. VII,

As I

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principles, and who knew well enough how much I disliked and complained of the liberty they took to themselves, of rallying all council and counsellors, and turning all things, serious and secret, into ridicule) they took all ways imaginable to render me ungrateful to all sorts of men, whom I shall be compelled to name in my own defence, persuading those that miscarried, that it was the Chancellor's doing, whereof I never knew any thing. However, they could not withdraw the king's favour from me, who was still pleased to use my service with others; nor was there any thing done, but upon the joint advice of, at least, the major part of those who were consulted; and, as his majesty commanded my service in the late treaties, I never gave the least advice in private, or wrote one letter to any person, in those negotiations, but upon the advice of the council, and after it was read in council, or, at least, by the king himself, and some others; and if I prepared any instructions, or memorials, it was by the king's command, and the request of the secretaries, who desired my assistance; nor was it any wish of my own, that any ambassador should give me any account of the transactions, but the secretary, with whom I was always ready to advise; nor am I conscious to myself, of ever having given advice, that hath proved mischievous, or inconvenient to his majesty ; and I have been so far from being the whole manager, that I have not, in the whole last year, been above twice with his majesty in any room alone, and very seldom in the two or three last years preceding; and, since the parliament at Oxford, it hath been very visible, that my credit hath been very little, and that very few things have been hearkened to, that have been proposed by me, but contradicted eo nomine, because they were proposed by me. I most humbly beseech your lordships, to remember the office and trust I had for seven years, in which discharge of my duty, I was obliged to stop and obstruct many men's pretensions, and refused to set the seal to many men’s pardons, and their grants, which would have been profitable to them, which procured them, and many whereof, upon my representation to his majesty, were for ever stopped ; which naturally hath caused many enemies to me; and my frequently concurring, upon the desires of my late Lord Treasurer (with whom I had the honour to have a long and faithful friendship to his death) in representing several excesses and exorbitances, the yearly issues so far exceeding the revenue, provoked many persons concerned, of great power and credit, to do me all the ill offices they could; and yet, I may faithfully say, I never meddled with any part of the revenue, or the administration of it, but when I was desired, by the late Lord Treasurer, to give him my assistance and advice, having had the honour to serve the Crown, as Chancellor of the Exchequer, which was, for the most part; in his majesty's presence; nor have I been, in the least degree, concerned, in point of profit, in letting any part of his majesty's revenue, nor have ever treated, or debated it, but in his majesty's presence, in which my opinion concurred always with the major part of the council; all which, upon examination, will be

1

made manifest to your lordships, how much soever my integrity is blasted, by the malice of those, who, I am confident, do not believe themselves ; nor have I, in all my treaties, otherwise received the value of one shilling, from all the kings and princes in the world, except the book of the Louvre, sent by the Chancellor of France, by the king's direction, but from my own master, to whose intire service, and to the good and welfare of my country, no man's heart was ever more devoted. This being my present condition, I do most humbly beseech your lordships to retain a favourable opinion of me, and believe me to be innocent from those foul aspersions, until the contrary shall be proved, which, I am sure, can never be, by any man worthy to be believed ; and since the temper of the times, and the difference between the two houses, in the present debate, with the power and malice of my enemies, who give out, they shall prevail with his majesty to prorogue, or dissolve the parliament in displeasure (and threaten to expose me to the rage and fury of the people) may make me to be looked upon, as the cause which obstructs the king's service, and the unity and peace of the kingdom : I most humbly beseech your lordships, that I may not forfeit your lordship’s favour and protection, by withdrawing myself from so powerful a prosecution, in hopes I may be able, by such withdrawing, hereafter to appear, and make my defence, when his majesty's justice, to which I shall always submit, may not be obstructed, or controuled, by the power and malice of those, who have sworn my destruction,

'Exit Clarendon.

THE WORLD'S MISTAKE IN

OLIVER CROMWELL;

OR,

A short Political Discourse, shewing, that Cromwell's Male-administration (dur.

ing his four years and nine Months pretended Protectorship) laid the foundation of our present condition, in the Decay of Trade.

A

London : Printed in the year MDCLXVIII.
F all the sios, that the children of men are guilty of, there is

none, that our corrupt natures are more inclinable unto, than that of idolatry; a sin, that may be towards men, as well as other creatures, and things: for, as that which a man unmeasurably relies, and sets his heart upon, is called his God, even as that which he falls down before and worshipeth ; so, when one hath the person of another in an excess of admiration, whether for greatness, or richness, &c. which we are subject to adore, we are said to idolise bim; and therefore, the wise Venetians, who, of all men, are most jealous of their liberty, considering that, as the nature of man is not prone to any thing more than the adoration of men, so nothing is inore destructive to freedom, have, for pre

venting the mischiefs of it, made it unlawful, even so much as to mourn for their duke at his death : Intimating thereby, that their felicity and safety depends not upon the uncertain thread of any one man's life, but upon the vertue of their good laws, and orders, well executed, and that they can never want virtuous persons to succeed. And how do such principles in men, led by little more than morality, reprove those, who have a great measure of gospel-light, for their senseless excess, in their adoring the remem. brance of Cromwell? For as the objects of idolatry are mistaken creatures, or things, proceeding sometimes from self-love, as well as other causes, so the undeserved approbation, and applause, that Cromwell's memory seems to have with his adherents, amounting to little less, than the idolising of him, appears to me to be the product of an excessive veneration of greatness, and a selfish partiality towards him; for that, the more honour is given to him, the more praise they think will consequently redound to them, who were his favourites; and they fortify themselves herein, with the credit, they say, he hath abroad, though there is little in that, because the opinion, that strangers have of him, may well be put upon the account of their ignorance, in the affairs of England, which travellers do find to be so great, even amongst ministers of state, as is to be admired. And now, as this error in idolising Oliver hath two moral evils in it (besides the sin in itself :) The one a reflexion upon the present times, as if the former were better than these ; and the other, the unjust defrauding the long-parJiament of that, which is due to them, to give it idolatrously to him, to whom it doth not belong; I esteem it a duty incumbent upon me to discover the mistake. I am not insensible, that I shall, by this, draw the envy of those upon me, who, being jealous of their honour, will be angry for touching them in their Diana ;* but, knowing myself clear from the vices of envying virtue in any, how contrary soever he may be to me in judgment, as well as from being unwilling to allow every onc their due commendations, I will cast myself upon Providence, for the success of this paper ; and in reference to Cromwell's government, and the present times, make some observations relating to both, and, in order thereunto, shew,

First, That the original cause of the low condition that we are now (in relation to trade) reduced unto, had its beginning in Oli. ver's time, and the foundations of it, laid either by his ignorant mistaking the interest of this kingdom, or wilfully doing it, for the advancement of his own particular interest.

Secondly, That his time, for the short continuance, had as much of oppression, and injustice, as any former times.

Thirdly and Lastly, That he never, in his latter days, valued ei. ther honour or honesty, when they stood in the way of his ambi. tion, and that there is nothing to be admired in him (though so much idolised) but that the partiality of the world should make

Or, favourite

him so great a favourite of ignorance, and forgetfulness, as he seems to be.

When this late Tyrant, or Protector (as some calls him) turned out the long-parliament, the kingdom was arrived at the highest pitch of trade, wealth, and honour, that it, in any age, ever yet knew. The trade appeared, by the great sums offered then for the customs and excise, nine-hundred thousand pounds a year being refused. The riches of the nation shewed itself, in the high value that land and all our native commodities bore, which are the cortain marks of opulency. Our honour was made known to all the world, by a conquering navy, which had brought the proud Hol. landers upon their knees, to beg peace of us, upon our own con. ditions, keeping all other nations in awe. And besides these ad. vantages, the publick stock was five-hundred thousand pounds in ready money, the value of seven-hundred thousand pounds in stores, and the whole army in advance, some four, and none under two months; so that, though there might be a debt of near five-thou. sand pounds upon the kingdom, he met with above twice the value in licu of it.

The nation being in this flourishing and formidable posture, Cromwell began his usurpation, upon the greatest advantages ima. ginable, having it in his power to have made peace, and profitable leagues, in what manner he had pleased with all our neighbours, every one courting us then, and being ambitious of the friendship of England ; but, as if the Lord had infatuated, and deprived him of common sense and reason, he neglected all our golden opportu. nities, misimproved the victory, God had given us over the United Netherlands, making peace (without ever striking a stroke) so soon as ever things came into his hands, upon equal terms with them: And immediately after, contrary to our interest, naade an unjust war with Spain, and an impolitick leagne with France, bringing the first thereby under, and making the latter too great for Christendom; and by that means broke the balance betwixt the two crowns of Spain, and France, which his predecessors, the long-parliament, had always wisely preserved.

In this dishonest war with Spain, he pretended, and endeavour. ed to impose a belief upon the world, that he had nothing in his eye, but the advancement of the protestant cause, and the honour of this nation; but his pretences were either fraudulent, or he was ignorant in foreign affairs (as I ain apt to think, 'that he was not guilty of too much knowledge in them.) For he that had known any thing of the temper of the popish prelacy, and the Frenchcourt-policies, could not but see, that the way to increase, or preserve the reformed interest in France, was by rendering the protestants of necessary use to their king, for that, longer than they were so, they could not be free from persecution; and that the way to render them so, was by keeping the balance betwixt Spain and France even, as that, which would consequently make them useful to their king: But by overthrowing the balance in his war with Spain, and joining with France, he freed the French king

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