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the king had suffered himself to be so far transported by the successes of his arms against the Welsh and Irish, and by the natural levity and haughtiness of his temper, as to forget that the affections of his people were his best security; and some harsh and arbitrary treatments of them had given too much ground for the suspicions, which now proved fatal to him.

That unfortunate prince having brought himself into this strait, sunk under it, and promised upon oath (1213) to submit to an award of pope Innocent or his legate: and the award was such as might be expected from a court which for more than an age had been struggling to subdue princes, and to set up a monarchy that was to raise and humble them at pleasure, and to govern the nations upon earth, under the colour of His authority whose kingdom was not of this world.-The issue was accordingly; for the reason which had given beginning to and supported the controversy, which was the pretended vassalage of the English church, was the last thing considered, and the interest of the new monarchy the first. For in the agreement, the articles whereof were doubtless brought from Rome, the first article does, in all the accounts we have, run in this manner, viz. "That the king should surrender and yield up the kingdoms of England and Ireland, and for the time to come hold both as fees of the papacy; the former under the yearly tribute of seven hundred marks, the latter under the tribute of three hundred." This one article leaves it beyond all possibility of doubt that the court of Rome intended nothing less than to usurp the sovereign power of the kings of England, and to swallow up that authority at once which they had been struggling for a great while, under the specious name of ecclesiastic liberty for to show that this article was not inserted only to add pomp and ceremony to the submission of the king, or that the power was imaginary, at which the designs of that court were levelled, the article was explained by the execution thereof; for in pursuance of this agreement the king surrendered his crown and his sceptre and other ensigns of the royal dignity to Pandulphus, and in the presence of his bishops and nobility did homage for his own kingdoms to the legate, who received it in the name of pope Innocent and of the church of Rome. And to make sure work, he also yielded up the patronage of all the churches in England which belonged to the crown, and by an oath, in such form as was usual from vassals and feudatory princes to their supreme lord, they bound his chains about his head for in that oath the king



swore to be "faithful to God, to St. Peter, and the holy Roman church, and to his lord pope Innocent, and his catholic successors;" that "he would neither in deed, word, consent, or counsel, do any thing to the prejudice of his life or limbs, but do what in him lay to discover and prevent all harms and wrongs;" that "he would keep the secret which the popes by themselves or by their legates or letters should entrust to him;" that "he would defend the patrimony of St. Peter, especially the kingdoms of England and Ireland, against all opposers whatsoever."

This is the substance of the oath imposed on this unfortunate prince, as it is delivered down by M. Paris, the Annals of Waverley, and the Chronicle of Hemingford, and which differs so very little from that imposed by pope Gregory on some of the Western bishops, and comes so near the form called the new oath of fidelity', prescribed by the feudal law to be imposed by absolute lords on their vassals and feudatories, as plainly shows that pope Gregory and his successors acted upon the same views, and intended nothing less than the vassalage of the Western nations. I shall add no more on this head, but the reflection which naturally occurs, and which Hemingford immediately subjoins to the aforesaid oath: "Thus," saith he, "of a freeman did the king become a slave."

To consummate the misfortunes of this prince, as if they had intended that neither his conscience nor his honour should survive his calamity, they obliged him by two distinct charters, one directed to pope Innocent, the other to all Christian people, to tell the world, that "all this was done, not by constraint, or fear, but by the inspiration of the Holy Ghost, and of his own free will, and with the common consent of his barons f."

But though the ambition and designs of the court of Rome were ever the first thing in the view of pope Innocent, and the compass of a year or two made it appear how little regard was had to the church, or to the clergy of England, or to their rights and privileges,

Matth. Paris. ann. 1213. p. 237.

Gale, Historiæ Anglicanæ Scriptores quinque, vol. ii. p. 177.


Ejusd. p. 555.

d Baron. Annal. ann. 1079. N. 8.

1 Oath of fidelity.] See Barrow On the Pope's Supremacy, or Christian Institutes, vol. iv. p. 126-9, and notes there.

e Feudor. lib. ii. tit. vii.

'Chart. Joh. Reg. Angl. Epist. Innoc. lib. xv. epp. lxxvii. and lxxviii. p. 786, 787.

which had served of late to make a noise and to cover the true secret of that court; yet for the present the clergy were comprehended in this agreement, by which the king further stipulated to reverse the outlawry against the nobility, bishops, clergy and religious, to receive them into favour, and to make satisfaction for the losses the clergy and religious had sustained during the interdict. In particular the archbishop of Canterbury, the bishops of London, Ely, Hereford, Bath and Wells, and Lincoln, who seem least to have deserved it, were distinguished by greater measures of favour in this fatal agreement.

For, besides having their names inserted in the general agreement, they had letters patent directed to each of them from the king, in which he not only assures them, in his own name, that he would receive them to his favour, and entreats them to return to England, but in the body of their patents he tells them, that H. archbishop of Dublin, Peter bishop of Winchester, John bishop of Norwich, and twelve barons, had by oath engaged themselves to see this agreement performed.-But whilst pope Innocent was thus careful of the interest of the court of Rome, and of their immediate creatures and dependants, the French king was to be rewarded with the merit of the undertaking; and the holy warriors whom this occasion had drawn together, instead of the towns, honours and wealth which they expected, were to be paid with indulgences and rewards from heaven.-Thus was this affair concluded in England about the fifteenth of May in the year 1213, and the fourteenth of the reign of king John.

Matters being thus concerted in England, Pandulphus returned to carry the news to France, where he had a new and (it may be) a much greater difficulty to manage. To quiet the exiled clergy, he carried with him eight thousand pounds as a part of what they were to receive for the damage they had sustained, which, with the hopes of a far greater sum and an assurance of an honourable reception in their own country, did for the present make them easy under the late agreement.-But to manage the spirit of the French king required greater address; for that prince, whose views were of a different kind, and who could not bear the thoughts of being paid with a future glory, was out of all patience to see himself tricked in the face of the world, and his mighty hopes end in nothing else but the reproach of being a stale and a tool to the papacy. He could not but with great mortification reflect on his own ill conduct, who, as he told the legate, had spent above three

score thousand pounds in this affair, and all this to make an accession of two kingdoms' to the ecclesiastic monarchy, which under the conduct of pope Innocent was at this time the most formidable power in Europe.

Besides, the ill example which he had given might too soon return upon him, and what he had done at the instance of pope Innocent against the Albigenses, the king of England, and the emperor Otho the fourth, might, when the time came, serve to justify the like attempts against himself and his own crown. For as the pretence of the court of Rome to depose kings and give away crowns, was indefinite, and without any limitation but the pleasure of that court whose creature that pretence was; there is no doubt but that court had an equal title to the deposing of a French king, and might as well give away France as Germany and England, or the country of the Albigenses.

Nor was the French king the only person that was mortified and disappointed by this fatal league; for if the clergy, who did not yet penetrate the true secret of the court of Rome, or at least did not sufficiently consider the effects thereof, were for the present easy under it, their future conduct, and the ill treatment which the exiled clergy and religious so soon received from that court, put it out of doubt, so that they were very quickly and not without ground very uneasy under it, and could not but with great mortification behold the conjunction of those powers, which might in time render them an easy prey to either. The truth is, God's time was now come to punish the wild bigotry of the English nation, which under the cover of zeal had been instrumental in letting in an enemy upon their country: for though this unfortunate prince was singled out, and in his fate the world was to see the imposture of the court of Rome in its full and true dimensions, yet to do right to the king it must be owned, that he fell a sacrifice to the imprudent and ill conduct of his subjects and ancestors, and to the superstition and ignorance of the past and present age, rather than to his own personal failings and miscarriages; for though his conduct is scarce capable of excuse, it is certain, he could not have been used as he was, if his hands had not been tied up and his authority fettered by the unwary concessions of his predecessors, in giving away so many of the ancient and essential rights of the crown of England. And the punishment was answerable; not personal only, but a national and a public mischief.


1 Two kingdoms.] England and Ireland.

But whilst all the other parties concerned in this affair were so equally mortified in the event thereof, that it is hard to say which of them was most uneasy under it, the joy and transports of pope Innocent and the court of Rome bore proportion to the importance of the interest which they served by it, and rose up to a pitch incapable of concealment from the public view; for the subjugating of two great and opulent kingdoms, and rendering them fiefs of the papacy, was such a step towards the monarchy they had been labouring for, that the whole air of pope Innocent and the turn of his epistles and rescripts make it very plain, that he now thought of nothing less than being another Melchisedech, and at once the great high-priest and the monarch of the world.

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The style of that prelate was answerable to the idea which he had of his power; for in the bull by which he granted the kingdoms of England and Ireland to king John, he thus describes the present state of the papacy, and the duty and acknowledgment which that court expected: "Jesus Christ (saith he) the king of kings and lord of lords, and priest according to the order of Melchisedech, hath so united the royal and sacerdotal power in his church, that the kingdom is but a royal priesthood, and the priesthood the royal powera:" and the consequence he makes was fitted to the notion which gave beginning to it; for he infers from hence, that "as every knee in heaven bowed down to Christ, so every one should yield obedience to his vicar here upon earth b." And indeed this was the doctrine which the court of Rome did about this time scatter all over Europe; and with such zeal and sincerity did pope Innocent act up to this doctrine, that the Annals of Waverley tell us, that in his time "God subdued the three pestilent enemies of the church, the schismatics of the east, the heretics of the west, and the Saracens of the south." And in the fore-mentioned epistle to king John, pope Innocent saith, it has "pleased God so to order the affairs of the world, that those provinces which had been anciently subject to the Roman church in spirituals, were now become subject to it in temporals." And that Germany as well as England might feel the effects of the new grandeur of the papacy, about this time or not long after, Frederic

Rex regum et Dominus dominantium Jesus Christus, Sacerdos in æternum secundum ordinem Melchisedec, ita regnum et sacerdotium in ecclesia stabilivit, ut sacerdotale sit regnum et sacerdotium sit regale. Innoc. Epist. lib. xvi. epist. cxxxi. p. 810.

Innoc. Epist. lib. xvi. epist. cxxxi. p. 810.

< Ibid.

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