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THE SCOTTISH POLITICK PRESBYTER,
SLAIN BY AN ENGLISH INDEPENDENT:
Or, the independents victory over the presbyterian party. The rigour of the Scotch government, their conniving and bribing; the lewdness and debauchery of elders in secret. A tragi-comedy.
Diruo et ædifico, muto quadrata rotundis.
Printed in year 1647. Quarto, containing sixteen pages.
ACT I. SCENE I.
Enter Directory, Sargus, Luxurio, two Elders.
T must be so.
Direct. Sarg. If that he'll not comply: have you heard nothing
Lux. No, he seems to slight our summons.
Direct. Let him smart for't, Luxurio, denounce him to the horn, after excommunication ipso facto: what madness doth possess him, that he'll not buy his peace?
Sarg. I sent one of my agents to him, who gave him timely notice, there was no way but punishment, except a fee.
Direct. Have you already fram'd the warrant?
Direct. Read it.
We, the elders of the congregation demoniack, upon information and notice of some scandals that you have given, whereof we are to take
notice, do hereby, as officers of the church, require and command to appear before us, on Tuesday the seventh day of February, Anno 1644, to answer such things as shall be objected against you.
Direct. Send it away with speed: fond man, doth he not know that we have scourged lords, and trod on kings? that temporal force will aid our spiritual plots; Knox and Melvill have left power to us, ample as that Rome's bishop claims; I'll make myself as great as him, if I get foot in England: I hug my genius that doth prompt me on.
No dull and heavy fancy clogs my soul,
If that I can persuade the Englishmen to let me noose them, as their brethren, I'll spread my pennons further yet:
And, like a comet in the evening sky, Strike with amazement every wond'ring eye. Let's be gone.
Enter Liturgy, Dipwell.
Litur. And why new Jordan?
Dipw. If we give credit to the card, 'twill tell us, like to that river through which once Levites did bear the holy ark, New River flows.
Litur. But can those tender virgins, that resort there to be baptised, endure the bitter blasts of Boreas's and Hyem's frosty breath, and not be much impaired in their health?
Dipw. The water, without doubt, is sanctified; and, as the holy martyrs, girt with flames, sang chearfully, as if they nothing felt, so compassed about with ice and cold, those, that we there dip, receive no harm.
Litur. Strange delusions.
The Crown stoops to the mace,
The noble to the base.
Enter a Pursuivant, with officers,
Purs. By the command o' th' ruling presbytery demoniack, sir, I arrest your person.
Litur. Where's your warrant?
Litur. Ha, my inveterate foes have all conspir'd to work my ruin. Look here, friend; because I did refuse to come when summoned, nor sent a fee for my discharge, [shews Dipwell the warrant] so to maintain their lust and luxury, who, by their daily prodigality, consume their aurum Tholosanum, in riotousness, adultery, and fornication. O England! wilt thou be slave to these vermin? the vulgar do not know what will ensue, should they accept of a presbytery; those that do sit at helm will not discover it, for that it tends to uphold their pride and wantonness; good men are vassals to the vile:
While that the fathers of the church do walk like men dejected and forlorn,
Mourning like doleful pelicans, and howl In desart places, like Minerva's owl. Who would have thought so flourishing a state, As England was but seven years ago, Should now become the pattern of all woe; Calamity and comfort comes and goes From state to state, as Neptune ebbs and flows; With human things, a thing divine doth play, Nothing arriv'd at height, but doth decay: Earth's toys are false, they bid us soon adieu, Her during sorrows are most certain true. Come, I'll along, Sir, with you: Mr. Dipwell, will you be witness of my usage with me?
Dipw. Sir, do not go, 'tis madness for a man to put himself into their hands that hate him.
Litur: Should I not go, they'll give me over to the temporal sword, and in the market-place proclaim me rebel, confiscate my estate, and send me into banishment.
Dipw. Will Englishmen put on this Scottish yoke? I have a hope the independents may send hence this government to be abhorr'd, from England to Geneva, where 'twas born.
Litur. Pray heaven it prove so. Now to my adversaries: my soul contemns their most usurped power, though now it overflows in tears, whose current overflows its banks.
Where griefs virago, upon either hand,
ACT II. SCENE I.
Enter Anarchy, Priscilla, his wife.
Pris. I'LL none of this same lousy learning to make my son a whoremaster, e're he hath seen the age of eighteen years; for, when they once come but to construe Ovid de arte amandi, their bowels yearn to occupy the nine.
Anar. Away, thou fool; doth not even nature tell us, that learning doth support the world, and taught the rustick clown the way to till the ground, to bind the corn in sheaves, and wield the flail?
Pris. I say, I will not make my son a beggar, expose him to contempt and scorn; send him to Oxford, send him to Cairfax rather, and see him caper in a string; no, no, we, in this age of ours, the heavens be praised, have little use of learning; if he can read his psalter, and cast up his accounts for bread and salt; he's a sufficient scholar: Besides, heaven bless the parliament for their most pious acts in general and particular, that they have reduced those tippling black coats to a new modell'd garb, that, where before they drank too much, and eat too little, they now shall neither eat nor drink: What shall we do with such lobcocks,
that must sit all the week in taverns and ale-houses, and on the Saturday bestow two hours in study, which, when they utter the next day, there's none can understand it.
Anar. The blind cares not, if Sol ne'er shine, they still can grope their way; my son shall be a scholar, and let the worldlings wallow in the dung, while he the Indies bars about him; none knows the learned's bliss, but those that learned are; I do look on Plato's divinity, next uato Moses's writings; fam'd Aristotle's learned philosophy, next unto Jesse's sons rare proverbs; Livy's large book, next to the chronicles of Israel's kings, and Homer's deathless verse, next unto David's lays: May hell conspire to cast plagues on those would not have learning be advanc'd and honour'd, when ignorant armies, ignorant parliaments, ignorant synods, ignorant fools and knaves
Shall lie unthought of, rotting in their graves;
Mr. Moneyless, I joy to see you, Sir.
Mon. Sir, I made bold to press into your privacies unawares; my ignorance will, I hope, purchase my pardon.
Anar. Still complimenting; you courtiers feed on compliments as your meat; leave it, and take more solid food, a thousand of 'em will not staunch ones hunger: What news, what news abroad?
Mon. Faith, none that makes for me; the King must not yet see Whitehall; Cromwell won't have it so.
Anar. We can grow great without him; what profit doth the world receive by Kings, who, at the best, are but relenting tyrants, whose power is dissonant from God's appointment? How bravely Holland thrives, guided by States, where people rule the people? There's a strong sympathy in nature; the mutual love they talk of, that was wont to be 'twixt subjects and their Kings, is now for ever lost.
Mon. Sir, I know you are an enemy to monarchy, and would digress even from your principles, should you allow of kingly government, which makes your words invalid.
Anar. Well said, I like thee, that adversity's bleak storms have not unriveted thy fix'd resolves, but thou still art faithful to thy master. O, Courtier, curse them that have caus'd thy woe, That like a skeleton thou now dost show:
You came, I know, to dine with me, and are most welcome: What printed news abroad?
Mon. As I was coming to you, I met another meagre courtier's face, and he shewed me a song, of which I begg'd the copy; I hope 'twill not offend your ears, if I do sing hem to you.
Anar. Not the least, let's hear.
THE King shall now enjoy his own,
Like to some deity.
But first of all his charge must hear
For things most trivial;
Upon his head niust fall.
Intend for to disband ;
And something give in hand.
And yet it will not be,
Will never make them free,
When they intended fitting,
And suffer for their sitting?
And without fear extorted,
O they are strangely thwarted. His Majesty is quitted now
Of Brown that wooden jailor, And in his stead, they do allow
Joyce, that same prick-louse taylor. "Tis very good to ease our teen,
The army are so witty,
Incompassing the city.
And prove a good purgation,
Are forced from their station ? The propositions now are gone,
And surely now the King Will ratify them every one,
But I fear no such thing. He cannot sure dare to resist,
If-he intend to eat, for ʼtis well known he long hath mist
His wonted clothes and meat.
Is his destruction wooing,
To purchase his undoing.