For further information see the following:
T.248 [1657.09.21] Anon., Killing is Murder (21 September, 1657).
Anon., Killing is Murder: or, An answer to a Treasonous Pamphlet entituled, Killing is no Murder.
Ovid. Fast. lib. I. Rode Caper vitem; tamen hic cum stabis ad Aras, In tua quod fundi cornua possit, erit.
London, Printed for Joseph Moor, and are to be sold by the several Booksellers in London and Westminster, 1657.
21 September, 1657.
TT2, p. 193; Thomason E.925 
(Placeholder: Text will be added later.) Editor's Note: Most of the Greek text in this pamphlet was unreadable.
OMnibus scribendi datur libertas, paucis facultas, (was the saying of Scaliger:) And therefore, when I first fell upon this Paper, I was wishing to my self, that so good a Subject, as the answering so dangerous an Error, had lighted upon some better Pen than mine; that the justness of the Cause, might not have suffered under the weakness of the Defender: But when I saw the wiser sort gazing one upon another, and the rest greedily swallowing it, either because they understood it not, or believed the others might; I thought it my duty to evince to the World, that every man was not of the Authors opinion, and that a general silence had not begotten a general consent. And this was the true cause of this present Writing; wherein if the World shall be pleased to believe me, I ask no more: If otherwise, I seek nothing but the emancipation of Truth; and therefore if it be an Error, it is one on the right hand, and may the better deserve pardon, if not imitation.
To say nothing of the Title, (which is no more than the Decalogue tythed, or one Commandment thrust clearly out of doors) I shall begin with the Author, whom we find bound up under the name of William Allen; but I believe he is not the first who hath fathered a child that is none of his own; and therefore I question whether it be not as hard to suspect him, as difficult to find him out? For (besides that by the thread it looks not as if it should be home-spun) there are many circumstances might induce me to think it may be Alien-born, if I could for the present think upon any English-man abroad, who (bating the Subject) were able to beget such another: But whoever he be, the Example is more then the Man; and therefore I thought good to discuss his Arguments, and bestow some ink upon the Tetter, that it spread no farther.
The next thing considerable are his Epistles; in the first whereof the Gentleman is very merry, and gives his Highness an appellation, no good Subject will deny him: He calls him the Father of his Country, (for so indeed he is) yet very dutifully,
——— ante diem patrios inquirit in annos:
He would fain have him gone, that he might come by his inheritance; and plays with the word Father, as Absolom with the credulity of the people, not that he might mend any thing in the Government,1 Sant. 19. 12. but strengthen the Conspiracie, for so the Text calls it.
In the second, to give the more credit to his mutinous perswasions, he would fain be thought to have been a Soldier, and believes, there is no way to be deemed the Cato of the Age, unless he dare be honest, (as he calls it) which in plain English, is factious, and rebellious:
—— Habeat jam Roma pudorem!
Tertius è cœlo cecidit Cato ——
Flor. t. 1. c. 26.Lastly, he implies as if he had deserved well of his Country; and yet methinks he might have remembred, the same did Manlius Capitolinus, of Rome; yet upon moving a sedition, and seeking to get the people to his faction, he was, without any regard had to his good desert, pitch’d headlong from that Capitol, which to his former honor he had so valiantly defended. In a word, he endeavours to place a Religion in the Act, and would be thought himself to be an Angel, if it be for nothing else but troubling the waters.
But to descend to his Book, than which I have not met with a thing more fallaciously composed, or more craftily put together; wherein, Id sibi negotj credidit solùm dari, populo ut placeret, &c. And therefore (like Manna) he would fain relish every mans taste, and become all things to all men, that he may gain some. For whilst he argues confidently, tanquam ex concessis, and as Tully faith of such another, Nihil tam verers, quàm ne dubitare aliquâ de re videatur; he insinuates into every faction, and interest, and secretly steals into the easie People, whose ears are more open to Rhetorique, then Logick, and sooner driven by fine words, than led by perswasion: whence it comes to pass, that they are cheated with the Gloss in stead of the Text, and gulled with the speciousness of the bait, to swallow the hook; which they seldom discover, till they come to repent of, or disgorge, without the very entrailes of some of them, where it bath taken fastest hold. But the best of it is, we have not many examples, that peeces of this nature have made any understanding man a Proselyte, and rarely met with a cordial reception in any, except a few loose, idle fellows, who like the Athenians in the Acts, spend their time in nothing else,Act. 17. 21. but either to tell, or hear some new thing: For, as to the persons for whose sake our Author saith he hath displeased so many to please so few, (the honest and the wise) it cannot be thought but that the former will be so far from being pleased with it, that they will look upon it (as he tells us he wrote it) with indignation; as well knowing, that it is not enough for a man to be Integer vitæ, but he must be also sceleris purus, which I think no man can be said to be, who hath had his hand in blood, especially in the blood of his Prince, whom, by the Laws of Nature, and Nations, he is obliged to defend. And as for the wiseman, though he may have so little honour, and less honesty to approve of such an action when done, yet he hath too much wit to imbarque in the design, as counting it as difficult to be concealed, as dangerous to be effected: And therefore (as vapours go no higher then the middle Region, and from thence fall down again upon the earth) the greatest influence it is like to have, must be upon (the τοπολ[Editor: illegible Greek word]) the multitude, and these he useth as the Monkey did the Cats paw, to scrape the nuts out of the fire; and having put them in the head that they are the Geese that must preserve the Capitol, he perswades them to put their shoulders to that, which himself knows to be too hot to touch with his finger. In a word, he wants neither fallacies to amuse, nor malice to exasperate them, so that I may as truly say of this Pamphlet what Hotoman as injustly said of Littletin,De verbir [Editor: illegible word] cit. fordum Stultitia videatur in isto libro cum malitiâ, & calumniandi studio discertasse
In the next place he falls upon the business of Sindercomb, and would fain know, whether (if there had been any such Plot) it deserves the Epithites Mr. Speaker gave it, viz. of Bloody, Wicked, &c. concerning which, because I shall have an occasion to speak to it in its proper place, I shall onely say thus much to it at present; That it will sound little otherwise to any person of honesty, or honour, it being a course against all Honour, Religion, Society, Humanity, Laws of Nations, and the very Rules of Policy; Lastly, An act so barbarous, and ferine, that were it not that it would be a very reproach to the age, that the matter should be once disputed, or called in question, it could never be defended:Jan. 3. 15. And so I leave it to that censure which St. James giveth of the wisdom of this world, Which (saith he) descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, and divilish.
But to draw into a lesser circle (or as himself saith) to speak sense more seriously; his Questions are Three. 1. Whether his Highness be a Tyrant or not? (which he is pleased to say will be none) 2. If he be, Whether it be lawfull to kill him? 3. If it be lawfull, Whether it is like to prove more profitable, or noxious to the Commonwealth? In the handling of all which, that I may not seem to balk any thing by silence, or cloud any thing by words,1. Quest. handled. I shall take them in order as he hath laid them; And begin with the first, which, if it be no Question (as he would have it) it needs no Answer: But because he makes use of that seeming negation onely to affirm the stronger, I shall consider his division of a Tyrant, viz. sine Titulo, & Exercitio; wherein, I hope I shall evince to the World, That His Highness is within neither.
That his Highness is not Tyrannus, sine Titulo.As to the first; he saith, That all Power over a Commonwealth, is derived either from the appointment of God, or the consent of the People themselves: Which I grant him, with this restriction, That where the power of God doth not interpose (as it will be hard for him to prove that it hath done at any time, since the Commonwealth of the Jews) the custom of the Country is the rule to go by; and therefore the thing that we are to enquire into will be, whether his Highness hath a sufficient power committed to him according to the Laws and Constitutions of this Nation? which, if he have, it will not matter what customs the Hebrews had amongst them, but sufficiently prove our purpose, that he is no Tyrant in Title. And therefore for answer to his Examples of Sauls and Davids being chosen by God, and confirmed by the people; we must know, that the Jews had an immediate revelation of the will of God by his Prophets, which in those times, we shall rarely find, that they gain-said, (especially in things of this nature;) and consequently, the meeting of the people at Mizpeth, and Hebron to confirm them (as he calls it) was but an act of compliance, to that will of God, which he had pre-declared by his Prophet Samuel; for if it should be otherwise, the election from God would have signified little, unless it should have pleased the people to have confirmed them afterwards. Besides, let him make of it what he can, I do not conceive that the Law given to the Hebrews (as it is properly Law) is obliging to other Nations; for no Law binds any to whom it was not given,Grot. l. 1. c. 8. de jure belli, &c: Deut. 5. 1. and so saith Grotius: And that it was given to them, the Law it self speaks as much, Hear O Israel, &c. And to them solely, will appear not onely by the second verse of the same Chapter, The Lord our God made a Covenant with us, &c but by Deut. 4. 7. and Psal 147. 20. where Moses and the Psalmist, tells them they were the onely people in the world, to whom God peculiarly gave his Laws. And that the Jews themselves did take it so, will be manifest in this, that the Proselytus Portæ,Jew. Antiq. l. 1. c. 3. of whom we read in the Fourth Commandment, was not circumcised, neither did he conform himself to the Mosaical Rites; onely he was tied to the observance of those Commandments, which were given (say they) to Adam and Noah, viz, to abstain from Idols, and Blood, &c. and yet they were such persons as lived in the heart of their Commonwealth amongst them; of this sort were Cornelius, Act. 10. the Worshipping Greeks, Act. 17. and those of whom we read Act. 2. 5. There were dwelling at Jerusalem Jewes, ([Editor: 3 illegible Greek words]) men that feared God of every Nation under Heaven. And this will appear farther by St. Paul, who saith, That he that is circumcised is a debtor to the whole Law; to which, if any one who was a stranger, did submit himself, he not onely thereby gained the right of a Native, but was in opposition to the former, called Proselytus Fæderis, sive Justitie, in regard he was obliged to the whole Mosaical Pædagogy, the other not. Again, we are bound by no part of the Hebrew Law, as it is properly Law;Id. Grat. l. 1 c. 8. because all obligation, except by the Law of Nature, comes from the will of the Law-giver: But that it was the will of God that others besides the Israelites should be holden by that Law, we have not the least intimation. From all which, I argue thus, that if the Laws of the Jews are not obliging to any Nation but their own, as I have shewn before; his examples which are grounded upon those constitutions must necessarily be the same, and therefore no more to be observed, or followed by our State, then is agreeable to our own Customs, or convenience. And therefore supposing that he had argued thus, The Kingdom of France is Hereditary, therefore the Polonian should be the same; or, The Polonian hath no power in time of Peace, therefore no Prince should have more; I beleeve every man would say, there is as great a non sequitur, as I conceive there is in the Gentlemans Argument, That because such a frame of Government fitted the Jews, therefore it should be a pattern to oblige the English; which, if it may be admitted, it will serve as well to prove that there are Oracles now, because there have been such antiently, or that the Devil of Delphos hath not lost his tongue, but gotten a cold. But what will the Gentleman say if in Answer to his Interrogation, Quis fecit te virum, & Principem super nos? I make it evident,
As to the first; Divines tell us, there is a two-fold will of God, viz. Decreti. & bene placiti; For the first, we are not to examine whether God hath in his secret Decree ordained, that he should reign over us; it is enough for us to know his revealed will; we see he is in possession of the Chief-Magistracy, and the Apostle tells us,Rom. 13. 1 There is no power but what is of God, and the powers that are, are ordained of God; not that he hath instituted every several form of Government, but Government in general; which, as it is immediately from him, so all other proceed from him, as from their first principle, and efficient cause, though by the intermediate wills of men; as heat, cold, health, and such like good things, are all from God, but effected by mediate natural causes. So then there is no power which is not from God; the affirmative, we have in the Old Testament,Pro. 18. 5 (By me Kings reign,) the negative (which is more effectual to express a generality, and exclude the contrary) we have in this place, which may seem to be taken from those words of our Saviour to Pilat,Joh. 19. 11 Thou hadst no power at all, &c. except it were given thee from above. For out of that particular, Thou hadst no power, &c. we may safely conclude this general, There is no power, &c. And this, all powers, as well Civil, as Ecclesiastical, confess by their several stiles, of Dei gratia, and Providentia divina. But to proceed; It cannot be imagined that God should regard Sparrows, and take an account of the hairs of our head, and yet stand as unconcerned in the revolution of Scepters; and therefore we cannot lay that to his charge which Phidias did to his Jupiter, that he had loosed his Eagles from his Charriot, and having forsaken his Throne, was gotten down into the Air, a making Centaures (as Boys, diagrams in paper) and had left the world to be governed by Fortune: No, if Scripture were silent, the Poet will teach us otherwise,
—— Neque enim hac sine numine Divum
Eveniunt — —
And therefore let it be enough for every honest man, to keep that station wherein God hath placed him, and as he was not born to a Crown himself, so to let it rest where he finds it;Psal. 75. 7. the disposal of Kingdoms belongeth to God, it is his own prerogative to put down one, and set up another, and therefore it little becommeth a Subject to dispute the title of his Prince, and with his peremptory ballance pronounce a Mene Tekel on his Soveraign.
2. He hath a sufficient confirmation from the people, and consequently, the Laws and Constitutions of this Realm, look upon him as a lawful, and a rightful Prince. And here, give me leave to take my rise to my ensuing discourse, from the state of affairs, in the year 1653. at what time there was no visible face of Government, all things being subjected to arbitrariness, and the whole power over the three Nations, in the hands of his now Highness, then General, boundlesly, and unlimited, and which might add to the danger, a person, not a little beloved by his Army, by whose assistance, it had been no hard matter, to have made any thing lawful, which he had thought convenient: Whereupon, divers Gentlemen, and those too not meanly considerable, made their applications to his Highness, that in regard of the great distempers that then lay upon the Nations, and the greater incertainties that were like to follow (in as much as there being no declared form of Government, men were generally at a stand, either how to act, or what to obey) he would be pleased to accept of the Government, it being thought the onely means to beget a composure, and stop that torrent of blood and confusion, which in all probability was breaking in upon us; adding withal, that they came not to give him an encrease of power, but intreat him rather, that he would abridge himself of some of that, of which (they humbly conceived) he had too much already: In a word, that he would be pleased, to circumscribe himself within such bounds and limits, as they had prepared for him, in that Model, or Instrument of Government, which they desired he would be bound by oath to observe, till such time as it should be further ordered by Parliament; whereupon, weighing no doubt, Minimum decet libêre cui nimium licet,Se. Tread. and considering, how much better it might be, to become the love, then fear of the people, he accepted of the place, and Title of Lord Protector, &c, and was in the presence of the Lords Commissioners of the Great Seal, the Judges, Lord Mayor, and Aldermen of London, Souldiery, and other persons of quality, publickly sworn to the said Government in Westminster-Hall, before the face of the people: And so having brought his Highness into his Chair, I shall leave him there, and consider, whether the people have given their consent and approbation to this Government of his Highness; wherein I think it will be an easie matter to prove the Affirmative. Witness to this purpose, first, The most considerable of the people, the Officers and Souldiers of England, Scotland, and Ireland (whom I call most considerable, in regard, the experience of all times hath made it evident, that such persons, have always carried no small stroke, in the disposal of the Chief Magistracy, especially, where it hath been Elective, and not Successive) and therefore I say, witness first, their consent, which is not onely clear enough at this day, by their submitting to him, but was further evident, at that time, by their Remonstrances and Subscriptions. Secondly, witness all the Judges of the Land, who conceiving there was a dissolution of Government, scrupled to act, till they had received new Commissions from his Highness, by vertue of which, they have since acted. Witness thirdly, That publick and magnificent Entertainment, of the City of London; those congratulatory Manifesto’s of the City, and County of York, and divers other Cities and Burroughs; the general approbation of so many Grand-Juries, at their publick Assizes, in the name of themselves, and Countries; their returns of thanks to his Highness, that he was be pleased to accept the Government; and solemn Protestations, of their defence of him, in the defence of it: Add to this, the humble Petition of divers Cities, and Towns incorporate, as Salisbury, Colchester, Lynn Regis, Marleborough, Wickam, Woodstock, Swansy, and others, whereby they desired, his Highness would be pleased to renew their Charters, which hath been accordingly done, and with no small acknowledgments, received. Witness Fourthly, All Sheriffs, and Commissioners of the Peace; and generally, all the people of England, Scotland, and Ireland; their submissions to his Highness Writs, for calling two Parliaments, since his Highness accepting of the Government; their elections by vertue of those Writs, and Returns of them; and lastly, the actual sitting of their several members (the Representatives of the people) and making Laws together with his Highness, both which, could not (so much as in common speech) be called Parliaments, no otherwise, then as they owned that power, which gave them being; and nothing of which could have been done by his Highness, if the supremacy had not bin in him, for, Quicquid efficit tale, est magis tale: In all which instances, I have purposely avoided every thing that might, so much as look, like a passive, or implicite submission; (it being one of the objections which our Author pretends to answer, but how lamely, and fallaciously he hath done it, I submit it to sober men) and have onely pitched upon such, as are in themselves express, and actual; and such, as not amount to, but are, explicit acts of faith and obedience: So that I may not improperly apply that of Martial, to our present purpose, Vox diversa sonat, populorum est vox tamen una. Fifthly, To say nothing of the recognition of the present Government under his Highness, made in the Parliament last before this; There is an act of this present Parliament (however the Gentleman is pleased to call a free Election, a Juncto) disanulling the Title, and Line of the late King, as also one other, wherein they declare that the prosperity and safety of these Nations, dependeth (under God) upon the security and preservation of his Highness person: I might add, the offer of the Crown, and Regal Dignities, made him in this Parliament, but I use it onely as an inference, to shew, that they are so far from disowning what he hath already, that they would have given him more: As also that other of this Parliament, whereby they desire, that his Highness will be pleased, by, and under the name of Lord Protector of the Commonwealth of England, Scotland and Ireland, and the Dominions, &c to hold and exercise the Office of Chief Magistrate of these Nations, &c. and his Highness’s publique Instalment in pursuance of it; but because it happened since this Pamphlet came out, I shall onely use it as an argument, that requires our obedience for the time to come: So then, admitting the highest power was once in the People, they have by these Acts divested themselves of that power, without any part of that right retained or reserved to themselves; Neither was this without the height of reason, if we consider the many changes and circumrotations we have suffered within these ten last years; wherein, one party hath been prevalent to day, another to morrow, a third the next, whilst the poor State lay weltring in her blood, and exposed to the ignorant guidance of any fourth, who were able to beat the other three; Nothing considering how they rent their Common mother, and that whoever had the better of it, the Commonwealth must needs be a loser:T Liv. l. 5. & l. 8. I say therefore it was providently done of the People, to dispose of that power out of their own hands, which, all the while they held it, they seldom used but to their own hurt: And that such things have been done in like manner by others, we have the examples of the Falisci, the Samnites, and the Campanians to the People of Rome: The subjection of the latter of which we have in this form. Populum Campanum, urbem quæ Capuæ, agros, delubra drûm, divina, humanáque omnia, in vestram P. C. ditimum dedimus:Julia. 38. The People of Camparia the City Capua, our Lands, the Temples of our Gods, all divine and humane things, we yield into your hands, O ye Conscript Fathers. Besides, it is best agreeable to the humor of this Nation, who naturally hate, either to be governed by more then one, or to see a priority that way in their Fellow-Subjects; and therefore,Annal. 1, Hist. l. 1. like the Cappadocians, refuse that liberty which was offered them, affirming they cannot live, but under the government of a Single person; holding it not only convenient, but most rational, according to Tacitus unum Imperil corpus, unius animo regendum; and in another place, Pacis interesse omnem potestation ad unum conferri. Lastly, he is in possession, which is as good a Title as any of the Roman Emperors, or most of our own Kings had to their Empire;De jure belli &c. lib, 1. c. 74. Mat. 22. 20. And Grotius tells us, A private man ought by no means to take upon himself to judge, but follow the Possession: So did Christ, commanding Tribute to be paid to Cæsar, because the money bare his Image, q. d. because he was in possession of the Empire:Plut. in Pomp. And the same advice did Pompey (whilst he was even then flying from the Rout at Pharfalia) give to the City of Mytilene, That they should fear nothing, but submit themselves to obey Cæsar the Conqueror. So then, whether we look upon the consent of the People,In vita Eliz. 18. or his being in possession of the Supreme Magistracie, (which, saith Cambden, takes away all defects whatever, and was so held by all the Judges in the Exchequer-Chamber, in the case of Hen. 7.) he hath Title enough to require our obedience, and submission to him.
1 H. 7. 4.Besides, the Laws of this Land require it, albeit he had no other Title then the bare Possession: For, where-ever the Law speaks of Nostre Seignior le Roy: it is to be understood of a King de facto, and not de jure, q.d. of a King regnant, and not of a King in name only. And so we find it taken, 1. & 2. of Philip and Mary,Cap. 10. where an Act was made, That the compassing the death of King Philip, during his marriage with the Queen, should be Treason; as well knowing, that he was but a King in name only, and not in office, and so not within 25 E. 3. 2. So the Statute of H. 7.11 H. 7. c. 1. (for indempnifying such as should take part with the King) hath been expounded, to be understood of a King in possession; For if there be a King regnant in possession, although he be Rex de facto, and not de jure, yet he is Sn̄r le Rey within the purview of this Statute. And that we may see this was no new thing, taken up to serve the present occasion, we may easily find that it had been so adjudged before these Statutes:Inst. 3. 7. For it was said that a man might be arraigned in the time of Ed. 4. for Treason done to H. 6. in compassing his death: And further, that if E. 4. had granted a Pardon in the time of H. 6. it had been void, for that it cannot be granted by any but a King en fait. But if any man shall object, that what I have offered speaks only of a King, which his Highness is not, and therefore being penal shall be taken strictly to intend nothing else;9 E 4. 1. be pleased to turn to the end of the second Question, where I have determined to handle this matter, as in its most proper place. And therefore to proceed; He that shall but seriously examine how often the line of succession to this Crown hath been disturbed, since the Norman Conquest, will find that a great part of the Kings of this Land had no better Title then Possession, or an Act of Parliament, and yet have thought their Rights sacred and inviolable. To say nothing of W. Rufus, Hen. K. Stephen, K. John, Edw. 3. Hen. 4. 5. & 6. Rich. 3. I shall begin with Hen. 7.Ret. Pat. 20 R. 2. (whose first Ancestor John de Beanfort, was legitimated by Act of Parliament, with this Clause,m. 7. Inst. 4. 37. (Exceptâ dignitate Regali;) who knowing not where well to find his Title, unless it were in his Scabbard, had an Act penned under covert and indifferent words, That the Inheritance of the Crown should rest, remain, and abide in the King, &c.Hist. H. 7. p. 11. Which words (faith the Lord Bacon) might equally be applied, That the Crown should continue to him; but whether as having former right to it, (which was doubtfull) or having it then in fact and possession, (which no man denied) was left fair to interpretation either way; and yet this was thought Title good enough, for the Nation to yield him obedience: For it is to be noted, that at this time, nor in some moneths after the dissolution of that Parliament, he had not entermarried with Elizabeth the eldest daughter of Edw. 4. and consequently,1 Marie, Sess. 2. c. 1. had no more right of his own, then what a long sword and a better Parliament had given him. In like manner Q. Mary thought herself legitimate enough when the Parliament had declared her so; (and hence possibly it might be, that that Parliament took its name of Parliamentum propitium) And Queen Elizabeth, and King James2 Eliz. 3. 1 Jac. 1. their Titles strong enough by their several Recognitions: For, that they suspected it before, will easily appear in this, that had there not been some apparent flaw in them, they knew too much, to have submitted them to be sodered by a Parliament. And therefore to take all this together, if the People of England, Scotland and Ireland have given his Highness their actual consent and submission; if the Parliament of the three Nations have disannulled the old Title and Line; if they have owned his Highness by the name of the Lord Protector, &c. if they have more then once received Laws at his hands, which is a most inseparable mark of Supremacie—volentes—Per populos dat jura—saith Virgil; If the Law regards no other King, but him in possession; And lastly, if many of our own Kings have thought it, and an Act of Parliament, a sufficient Title to this Crown; I may safely conclude this Part, That whoever hath so much to shew for the Supremacie, hath a good Title to it; And that his Highness hath as much, I hope I have by this time satisfied any unbyassed judgment, and being so, his Title is such,
—quo possit dicere, Jure meum est.
But to proceed; The next thing I meet with is a ripping up of many things, which, though possibly they may not be so well for the present as could be wished, yet may be justified to be no other then what the present necessity of State requires, and what others (both Princes and Commonwealths) have done in like cases: In setting down which, methinks the Gentlemans ink is a little too thick: For, besides that he hath thrown in a great deal of dross to help out weight, he thinks it will best suit with the Genius of the people, if what he wants in Argument, be made up in Railing. But because all this is of the same batch with his Character of a Tyrant, I conceive it may receive a more proper Answer in his second Division of a Tyrant, viz. Exercitie.
And herein I shall begin, with his Character;2. That his Highness is not Tyranous Enercitio. and because most things in it are packt together meerly to amuse the people, and few or none of them do competere solo q.d. proper only to a Tyrant, but may be applicable in like manner to almost all Princes, especially such as are wise, or would be safe; I shall take such of them as are of most weight, in pieces, and prove them to be no other, then what have been done formerly, and may be made use of again upon the like emergencies. And by his favor, his first is not so properly a Character: For because particular men that have been Generals of Armies, have misused that power into a Tyrannie, it will not follow that every General must do the same, or that there may not be a Tyrant as well without an Army, as with it. For Tyrannie, which is nothing more then a depravation of Monarchy, may be as well exercised in times of peace by distorting the Laws, as cutting them in sunder by the power of a sword. But to pass this, I believe it will hardly be denied, but that most Kings who have laid the foundation of any new Government, have been the same,Discor. l. 1. c. 10. q.d. Generals of Armies. What was Romulus, Theseus, Cæsar and others? whose memories are so fresh in History, and whose names look so big in the rolls of Fame. To avoid many instances, I shall pitch upon that of Cæsar, concerning whose war with Pompy, and taking upon him the Empire, though Machiavel says, that they that wrote his History, were bribed by his Fortune, yet if we shall believe Florus that wrote neer One hundred and eighty years after his death, (and so long after Truth is freely spoken, especially under Trajan,Tac. Hist l. 1. in whose days (saith Tacitus) a man might have thought what he would, and spoke what he thought) he will tell us, that after he had beaten Pompy at Pharsalia, and his sons at Munda,Flor l. 4. c. 2. the people of Rome were so far from thinking him a Tyrant, that non ingratis civibus omnes honeres in unum Principem congesti: circa templa imagines, &c. His Country not ingrateful, heaped all sorts of honor upon that one Prince: He had his Images about the Temples, a Crown deck’d with rayes in the Theatre, a Chair of State in the Senate, a Pinacle upon his house, a Moneth in the Zodiac; and besides all these, himself proclaimed,Rom. Antiq. 171. Pater patriæ, Consul in decenuium, Dictator in perpetuum, Sucrosanctus, & Imperator: All which Titles, together with the name of Augustus, were afterward conferred upon Octavius Cæsar, after he had broken the Triumvirate. All which I was the more willing to instance in, because I have not met with any thing come neerer our own story: Here is a General invested with the Civil power, and so far from being thought a Tyrant, or his taking the Government upon him an Usurpation, that the People (as I have shewn) not only laded him with honors, but loved his virtues, rather then feared his power: But I am afraid I have been too long.
De jure belli, & c. 1. 3. c. 5.His next mark of a Tyrant is, That he proceeds rather by fraud, then force: (a luckie Craft, as he calls it) pray who is more full of it then Ulysses, in Homer? or thinks it more just, then Agesilaus, in Plutarch? or calls it more profitable, then Xenophon in his life of Cyrus. Grotius calls it an honest craft, if it he devised against an Enemy; and saith, It matters not, whether a man get out of the power of his Enemy, by force or fraud: and to that purpose quotes St. Chrysostom, who saith, Those Generals are most praise-worthy, who have gotton the Victory by Stratagem: And St. Augustine, who declares, that when a just War is undertaken, it is no difference in point of right, whether one fight with open force, or lye in wait. But because some may object to me, that the Father saith it must be a just War: if you will take what is a just War (out of Livy) it is thus; Justum est bellum, quibus necessarium, & pia arma, quibus nisi in armis spes est. That War is just, that a man cannot avoid, and those Arms pious, where a man hath no other hope but in them. And therefore let no man think, he is obliged to fight with his Enemy in mood and figure,Hor. Furens. or that it is a breach of honor, to strike him anywhere but upon his Buckler. No —— Dolus an virius quis in hoste requirat? was an old saying; and without a large command of both, I think a Prince may keep his Dominions so long, till another who hath more wit then himself, take them from him: For it will be an easie matter to satisfie the people, with whom, as saith Seneca —— Quaritur belli excitus non cause, and the depth of their enquiry,Hor. Furens. is not how, but, who, had the better of it. Hen.-, (the first Ancestor of the late Line, for whose cause I beleeve this Pamphlet was principally intended) will tell us how lawful it is, if not, a credible Author will inform us, he made a higher use of it, when to give the more credit to his Espials abroad, he made his Religion,L. Bacon’s Hist. of H. 7. [Editor: illegible word] 125. a Pandar to his interest, and used to have them cursed at Pauls (by name) among the Bead-roll of the Kings Enemies. The use of which was, That as many conspiracies were thereby revealed, so the same and suspition of them, kept (no doubt) many from being attempted.
Then again, he saith, A Tyrant never goeth without his Guard, nor his Highness without his Life guard: Which, how usual it is for the meanest General, needs no example.Arist. Polit. l. 5. cap. 11. But if he had given us all that Aristotle had said concerning it, he might have bold us his difference, betwixt a King and a Tyrant, in that the first is guarded by his own Subjects, the other by Strangers: And which of these two his Highness resembles, I leave it to his very enemies, (nay the Author himself) to judge.
Again, (saith he) They impoverish the people, that they may want the power, if they have the will to attempt any thing against them: Which, that it is inseparably incident to all new States, no understanding man can deny, when he shall consider, that the People, who are always inclinable to change, in hopes of better, not meeting with what they expected (in regard of the Necessities that attend a new State) are still prone to try further.
Again, (saith he) They make war to divert, and busie the people: But, that this is no more then what hath been practised by our own Kings, will easily appear in our Stories (as lame as they are.) And truly, were our Wars at this time the same, (which the Gentleman doth not prove so much as by circumstance, or any thing else, besides his own word) yet they may be justified, to stand with a great deal of reason: For, foreign wars are the sink of a Commonwealth, and are the same to the body politique, that Leeches are to the body natural; who, besides that they carry off a deal of melancholy, black blood, are by experience found to draw off the causes of those vapors, which, if they were let alone, would infest the head. Edw. 3. and Hex. 5. made the same use of it: The latter of which, at what time the Nobility had set the Commons against the Bishops; by the perswasion of Thomas Arundel Archbishop of Canterbury (who had put him in head of his Title to France) he diverted those ill humors into an honorable War, which ended in the Conquest of that Kingdom: whereas, if they had been cherished at home, and not vented abroad, they had engaged this Nation in little less then a general combustion. Neither can any sober man say, but that our Wars have had as honorable an Exit: wherein, we have let the world know, we have been able, at the same time, to grapple with our Enemies, and defend our Allies. The examples are obvious, and need not so much as naming. And therefore, whereas he instanceth the war with Spain, it will easily appear to be a war (however the Scene hath been his own Chamber) meerly defensive, and thrust upon us by that Nation, whose boundless ambition thinks he hath too little elbow-room, till he can write a Ne plus ultra upon the one, as he hath done the contrary upon the other of Hercules Pillars: And therefore, methinks we should a little disdain,L. Bacon. That the Nation of Spain (which however of late it hath grown to rule, yet of antient time served many Ages, first under Carthage, then under Rome, after that under Sarazens, Gothes, and others) should of late years take to themselves that spirit, as to dream of a Monarchy in the West, according to that bold Devise, Video Solem Orientem in Occidente; only because they have ravished some Mines, and Gold, from a wild, and unarmed people, who had less Iron then themselves: But I believe, they have met with another kind of people in the English, whose first work hitherto hath been to find them out, the next to beat them.
De jure belli & Pacis.Lastly, for that part of his Highness speech, which the Gentleman is pleased to call his Comment upon Aristotle, I have met with the like of M. Antoninus, who would not touch the publique monies, without advice of the Senate; Dion. l. 6. quoted by Grotius l. 1. cap. 67.
I might with ease run through the rest of his Character, but as I said before, they do not competere solo; and therefore in this place I shall make good, That if there be any little things in this Government of his Highness, that by implication may be drawn within any part of his Character, (for directly there are none) that they are no other, then what either the present condition of the State will best bear, or what most wise Princes, and Commonwealths have upon like necessities of State done, and may well justifie the doing of. And here, we must not look upon a City, or State that is corrupted, with the same eyes, as we would upon those flourishing ones of old, which we have read of; because the Times men read of, are commonly better then the Times men live in, and the duties better taught, then practised: And to this purpose (saith the Lord Bacon) They contend too far, who would impose the Laws of Antient severity upon dissolute Times: And that our Times have been such, I believe the question may be saved:Plut. in Sol. And therefore as Solon said concerning his Citizens, That he had given them the best Laws they were capable of; So we must satisfie our selves with such Administrations as we have for the present, as well knowing, that the sudden throwing off, even of the worst things, is dangerous, and Advises that way are safelier heard, then followed: Which error Cicero notes in Cato the Second,l. 2. epistle 1. when writing to his friend Atticus, he saith, Cato optimé sentit, sed nocet interdum Reipub. Loquitur enim tanquam in Repub. Platonis, non tanquam in fæce Romuli. In like manner, we must not argue à Repub. constituta ad constituendam, in as much as the former is fixt, and setled, and the latter, trying all ways in order to that end. Some things may be not only justifiable, but laudable as the case may happen, which at other times, are so far from pardon, that they do not deserve excuse. Who would not think that man beyond the power of Hellebor, that should throw his goods overboard in a Calm? and yet, in a storm there is nothing more usual. The case is the same here: There are (saith he) Taxes, and Armies still on foot: To answer which, there are Enemies abroad, and Discontents at home: And as it cannot be expected, as long as the cause remains, the effect should be taken away, or that the Accessory should lead, but follow its Principal; so neither can it rationally be thought, that our Taxes should cease, or Armies be disbanded, as long as there are Enemies, or Discontents to be feared; who, though they may seem to sleep for the present, ’tis but as Pliny reports of the Lyon, with his eyes open: And therefore a man must not think an Enemy destroyed, as soon as he is beaten, or rooted out, because he is not able to keep the field; but ply him with warm clothes, and if he be not able to come to you, follow him. And so did Cæsar, who thinking it not enough to have beaten Pompy at Pharsalia, follows him into Egypt, and his sons into Spain. to make that Victory secure, which otherwise had been but doubtfull: And the same do all wise Princes (or such as intend to be safe) dealing with those before (as boys do with Adders) never think them destroyed, though cut in pieces, or sufficiently secure of them, as long as they threaten so much as with their tail; lest (what Naturalists report of the one, prove true in the other) that those divided pieces crawl together again, and those brands, but superficially quench’d, break forth into a greater flame: Now how this should be done without men, and monies, I understand not. So then, if we have Armies, and Taxes, they are but some of those natural effects which Wars bring along with them, which being once removed, the other will soon cease of themselves: till when, Preservation is to be preferred before benefit, in as much as those Counsels which tend to the former, seem to be attended with necessity; whereas those deliberations that tend to the latter, seem only accompanied with perswasion: And it is ever gain, and no loss, where at the foot of the account, there remains the purchase of safety.
But because men are best taught by Examples, and a sober inquiry into times past, is the best way to be satisfied with the time present; I shall give some few instances, wherein this Necessity hath been the guide not only of particular mens actions, but even of whole States.Plut. in Cæsare. ’Twas this made Cæsar break the sacred Treasury (notwithstanding the opposition of Metellus the Tribune) to take the monies there stored up, for the service of the War: And David to eat the Shew-bread,1 Sam. 21. 6. which was not lawfull to any, but the High-Priests only. ’Tis this hath made the Kings of France, and Spain, so often raise, and pull down their Coin, according to the fulness, or emptiness of their Coffers: ’Tis this hath made, not only them, but our former Kings to embase our monies: Frederick the Second, when he besieged Millan, stampt Leather for currant; And the Hollanders (Anno 1574) make monies of Pastebord.Camb. Rem. 179. In a word, If a man should ask why Dido laid Impositions upon her Subjects, and kept so many Soldiers on foot, Virgil will answer for her,
Res dura, & Regni novitas me talia cogunt
Molliri, & late fines custode tueri.
And another, to the same purpose ——
—Princeps (quia bella minatur
Hoster) militibus urbes præmunit, & armis.
Lastly, there is a Rule in our own Laws, Quod aliàs licitum non est, Necessitas facit licitum, & inducit privilegium, quod jure privatur. So to break prison, is felony; but not,15 H. 7. 2. Plow. Com. 4 E. 6. 13. 26 Assi 21. if the prison be on fire. So the wilful killing of a man is murder; but for preservation of his own life, a man may kill another that assaults him, or would rob him. I might add more, but I think these sufficient; and therefore conclude, That if not only particular men, but even whole States, have thought Necessity of State a sufficient warrant for the doing of things altogether unlawful in themselves; if our own Laws give a dispensation in like cases, and that to private persons too; It were hard measure to deny the same priviledge to Princes, to whom, according to Seneca, Quod Jovi, hoc Regi licet;Her. Fur. and who have the greater reason to be hedged and fenced about with such prerogatives, by how much the more they lie the more open, and exposed to storms. In a word, to be so nice and rigid in this point, were to invert the Fable of Æsop, To catch Swallows in Cobwebs, and suffer the little Fly to break through with the Spider: which, if it be not to be imagined, we can no more deny, but that such Actions of his Higness (which the Gentleman is pleased to call Tyranny) being no other then Actions in order to safety and preservation, are so much the more justifiable, by how much the more the general safety is to be preferred before a particular good, and the Common cause before a private interest. And so I leave his first Question to such satisfaction, as you have met with before: And hope that according to my promise I have proved his Highness to be no Tyrant, either in Title, or Government.
2 Quest.The next Question is, Whether if his Highness be a Tyrant, he may lawfully be destroyed? Wherein, admitting all that the Gentleman hath laid down to be true (as it is not) yet I say, A Subject cannot lay violent hands upon his Prince (although a Tyrant) and be held guiltless: And here I think it will not be expected that I should again prove his Highness to be a lawful Prince, according to the Laws and Constitutions of this Nation, having done it before in the 6, 7, 8, 9 Pages. — And therefore having admitted him to be such, I come to prove the unlawfulness of destroying or killing him, though he either had, or should abuse that power into a Tyranny. And to this purpose having
1. Answer to his general matter.For the first; It seems he hath not cast all his venom, at least if he have, he licks it up again: For he spends a side or two to the same purpose as he hath done the six former, only with this difference, that he hath wrested an Application in the former, but in this he hath given us none at all: only runs on, as if all were granted, and like Mr. Hobbs in his Epistle before his Leviathan, would have the people believe, he is a person loves his own humor, and thinks all he saith is Truth. And therefore, because in my former discourse I have sufficiently answered his point of Tyranny, I shall in this place meddle only with his new matter. As first, that of Grotius l. 3. c. 8. where he would have him say, That where all are slaves, it is not, a City but a great Family: And another out of his 1 lib. c. 8. (as he saith) Where no Iustice can be had, every man may be his own Magistrate, and do Iustice for himself. Concerning which, I will assure any man, that will not take the pains to search the book, that there is no such thing, nor ought that is like it. But however, to say somewhat to both, because they are in his Pamphlet: I shall not deny but the first may be good sense, and true enough, (whether it be Grotius’s, or the Poet’s, as he would have it in another place) but, that this should concern our selves, he must give me some better proofs then his bare saying, We are members of White-hall, before I think it worth the answering: And as to his second, I cannot believe that Grotius should be guilty of interfering;Dejur belli l. 2. c. 74. for I remember a Position of his in another place, directly contrary to what he would have him speak here, and that is, A private man ought by no means to take upon him to judge, but follow the Possession: But if this single Authority be not enough to disprove it, Bodinus goes yet further,De Repub. l. 1. c. 5. who saith, That a private man ought not to be his own Judge, whether a Magistrate doth him wrong, or not. And so I leave these, and come to his other of Aristotle, Plato, and Cicero, whom we must allow (especially the two first) to speak somewhat freely, because they were generally conversant in Popular States, to which it is inconsistent, that one man be greater then another, for fear he should grasp the Seigniory: And therefore I think it very material to speak somewhat in this place to the word Tyrant: Concerning whose Etymologie, (to say nothing of Dr Critton’s quibble, who would have it come from [Editor: illegible Greek word], caseus, because as Cheese is prest in the Wring, so the People are opprest by a Tyrant) I have met with none that comes nearer the primitive use of it, then what Calipine gives of it,Tit. Tyrannus. viz. [Editor: illegible Greek word], à dominandis populis, and so amongst the Antients was taken for him that had plenam in subditos potestatem, that is, a King: And in this sense it is used by Virgil,Æntid. 7.
Pars mihi pacis eri: dextram retigisse Tyranni.
Which in English, is no other, then to kiss the Kings hand. And therefore I should be easily drawn to believe, that by [Editor: illegible Greek word] they intended such a person, who by the constitutions of such, or such a place might, and did rule singly as King; and by [Editor: illegible Greek word] him that in a free, and popular State, used some indirect means (as of necessity he must) to usurp that Grandeur, which was inconsistent to their Laws: And so the Greeks took it; Græci olim quemlibet in libera civitate deminantem [Editor: illegible Greek word - possibly Tyrannon] appellabant, saith Rider: And truly it doth not appear to me, that it was the man, but the thing which they generally hated and decried, that is, to be governed by a single person, and therefore they spoke so bitterly against it, to deter others from attempting it: So that all that Aristotle, and Plato have written concerning it, are not to be taken so strictly, in reference to us: For till such time as there were many Free States, and that particular persons aimed at the sole government of them, the word was used in the best sense, and signified no more of injustice, then the word Latro, did antiently a Thief, or that of Knave, for what we now use it. And I suppose Grotius might have thought of somewhat like this, when (in his Preface to his Book De jure Belli & Pacis) wishing that Principality, had not for some Ages, gone into Tyranny; he adds, That Truth to which Aristotle was a faithful servant, is opprest by nothing more, then the name of Aristotle; but for his own part (saith) he will imitate the liberty of the Antient Christians, who were sworne to no Philosophers Sect, &c. But to proceed; I had almost forgot that which he cites out of Tertullian, Contra publicos hostes & Majestatis reos omnis homo miles. Concerning which I shall use the words of Grotius upon the same place: where the question being, In what cases an Invader may be expelled by force;De jure &c l. 2 c. 74. he saith, That if an Invader by an unjust war, hath seised on the Government, nor hath there followed any agreement, or faith given him, but his possession is kept by force, in this case (saith he) the right of War seems to remain: But because there is nothing of this in our case, for as I have shewn before, his Highness hath received a sufficient Testimony from the People of their consent, and his first Commission was enough to justifie him from being an Invader, I think this needs no further Answer. I have but two things more, and I shall fall to his Examples. The first is the Valerian Law, that made it lawful, for any man, to kill him, that took upon him the Magistracie, without the command of the People: To which, I say the same which I did formerly concerning the Laws of the Hebrews, that it was a particular Law proper to the Commonwealth of Rome, and calculated for that Meridian only. But because this Answer will not satisfie every man, I shall refer him that is scrupled at it,v. p. 7. 8. so what I have said before concerning the Consent of the People, then which, this word Command signifies (in this place) little more, if not the same: But as if the people of England had thought, some such thing might be objected to them hereafter, they did by their frequent applications to him, make it appear, that what in them lay they went about to command him; and so consequently his Highness is not within this Law. But now he talks of the Laws of Rome, I can tell him two that would have made fine work with such doctrine: The first was the Law Horatia, Si quis Tribunis Plebis, Ædilibus, Judicibus nocuerit, ejus capus Jovi sacrum esto: where, by Jovi sacrum caput, they intended a person excommunicated from the society of men, and such, as having his head vowed to the Gods, might be slain by any man, without being liable to Judgment for it,Rom. Ane 179 quoniam anima diie devot a amplius humani commercii non sit: And in this sense, whoever brake this Law, was called Homo sacer. Wherein it is observable, that the Law doth not say, whoever shall kill the Magistrate shall die therefore; but if he shall offer them never so little violence, q. d. si nocuerit, if he shall but hurt one of them, &c. The next is the Law made in the Consulship of C. Julius Cæsar,Cic. Phil. 2 whereby it was ordained, that such as were condemned of Treason, or raising uprores in the Commonwealth, should be banished. But as I said, they were Roman Laws, and so I leave them. The second is his master-Argument, drawn out of the 2. Philippick, wherein Cicero doth more then favour the parricide of Cæsar: But every man that remembers the story will be ready to say,Plea. in Cic. So brave an Orator, might have been eloquent at a cheaper rate, then the loss of his head, (for so much indeed it cost him) no great sign of approbation: And when he shall consider how suddenly the people revenged his death, damm’d up the Court wherein he was slain, Curiam in quâ occisus est obrui placuit, (saith Suetonius) Idúsque Martias Parricidium nominari,Sueton. in visa Cæs. ac ne unquam eo die Senatus ageretur, and withall bestowed upon him the honor of an Apotheosis, or enrollment amongst the Gods; the question will be soon out of doors, whether he were a Tyrant, or whether the people approved his murder: Besides, we must allow Cicero to speak like an Orator, especially against Cæsar, whose name (saith Florus) was so cryed up for eloquence and spirit, being thought to have been his equal therein, at least his second; and upon this score there was great emulation between them,Plut. in Cæsare. witness that book of his entituled Anti-Cato, wherein he did aspire to the victory of Wit, as victory of War, undertaking therein a conflict with the greatest Champion of the Pen, Cicero the Orator. I might add that other of his De Analogia, which was was nothing but a Grammatical Philosophy, wherein he did labour, to make vox ad placitum, to become vox ad licitum,L Bacon’s Adv. l 1. c. [Editor: illegible word] and to reduce custom of speech, to congruity of speech; and as also divers others which you may read in Suetonius and others. But Cicero himself hath not spoken so ill of him in this place, as he hath well of him in another, when pleading for Marcellus, and desiring Cæsar to call to minde how much he had deserved of Rome, although he was unfortunate in lighting upon the wrong side, he saith thus, Memento Caje, memento: Dii immortales! quid dix rim. &c. Remember, O Cajus, remember: O ye immortal Gods! why do I bid Cæsar remember, who never forgot any thing but injuries? And so I pass this, with that censure which Juvenal gives of him for writing this second Philippick: O fortunatam, &c.
[Editor: illegible word] 10.Antoni gladios possit contemnere, si sic
Omnia dixisset; Ridenda poemata malo,
Quam te conspicuæ divina Philippica famæ, &c.
In a word, both this famous Orator, and our Gentleman, if they had not forgot Æsop, might have learn’d to be wiser, as remembring, the Wolf had his skin pluck’d over his ears, for but putting his head within the Lyons den.
2. A disproof of his Examples.In the next place I come to consider his Examples, which (with submission) I conceive to be nothing to his purpose, though he hath dealt with them as Procrustus did with his guests, some he stretches, others he cuts shorter, if by any means they may be brought to fit his model. The first is that of Mutius Scavola’s attempt against Porsena; which, that it is nothing to the purpose, will appear by his own words (Hostis, hostem occidere volui) Being an Enemy, I would have slain an Enemy: And being so (as all who know the story must confess it) he could not attempt his life as being a Tyrant, but an open Enemy; and consequently, was but an act of single valor, as the words themselves necessarily imply; and no other,2 Mac. 6. 40. then what Eleazer in the Maccabees. did upon an Elephant larger then the rest, supposing the King had been upon him; Or the two Roman Soldiers, that ventured to cut the cords of Balista,Tac Hist. l. 3. c. 6. De jure belli, &c. l. 3. c. 32. at the battel of Cremona. And to this purpose, Grotius makes this excellent difference, between murtherers who violate their faith, either express, or tacite, as Subjects toward a King, Soldiers toward their General, &c. and between those that are not bound with any faith, who being open Enemies, by the Laws of Nature, and Nations, may kill one another every where: And such was Persona, to Scavola. v. Flor. l 8 c. 10.
Exo. 2. 11.The next is that of Moses’s killing the Egyptian; concerning which, he saith every English man hath as much a call as Moses had, to slay, &c. And truly I am of his opinion; for to me it appears, that neither had any: For if we consider the Text, we shall find that Moses had so little warrant to justifie his act, (that we read) he hid him in the sand; and the people were so far from allowing, or approving it, that the first time he hears of it, ’tis by way of exprobration, Wilt thou slay me as then didst the Egyptian? So that the act was altogether unwarrantable, and no more to be drawn into president, then the spoiling the Egyptians, to justifie Plunder.
The next is that of Sampson, and the Philistines: In which whole story, though we shall find in two places, that the Philistines had dominion over them, I conceive it cannot be understood otherwise, then of their prevailing over them; For, that Israel had given them any faith, or so much as promise of subjection, doth not appear, but rather the contrary,Jud. 16. 22. for themselves give Sampson the appellation of Enemy; Sampson our enemy, &c. And this might be the reason, why, although they had overrun the Israelites, they suffered no Smiths to live amongst them, because having received no faith from them, they were afraid of those excursions, which throughout the story we shall find some or other of the Israelites ever and anon making. And from hence I think I may safely say, the Philistines and Sampson were open Enemies, and consequently all acts of killing, and spoiling, were lawful between them. But this example will receive a stronger answer,Jud. 15. 5. which is a particular promise that God made to Manoah (the mother of Sampson) that He would give her a son, who should begin to deliver Israel out of the hands of the Philistines. And to this purpose we shall find, that the Spirit of God moved him, v. 25. of the same Chap. So v. 19. of the next Chap. The spirit of the Lord came upon him So Ch. 15. v. 14.—came mightily upon him, &c. and divers other places of the like nature. And so I think this Answer sufficient, 1. That they were open Enemies. 2. If they had not been so, there was an immediate inspiration from God to that purpose, and consequently not the act of a private man, as the Gentleman would have it.
The next is that of Samuels doing Justice upon the Tyrant Agag, (for so he is pleased to call it.) To which I answer, That besides that I said last before, that they were open Enemies, here was a particular command of God in the case. And therefore I shall take the story in pieces, and see, what Analogy there is between it, and the present purpose.—When the children of Israel murmured at the waters of Massah and Meribah, Amaleck came out and fought against them,Exo. 17. 8. whereby to obstruct their passage into the promised Land; And this we may read more fully in Samuel, where God saith,1 Sam 15. 2. I remember what Amaleck did to Israel how he laid wait for him in the way &c. And therefore God commanded Saul, to destroy him utterly; that as he had been the first of Nations, (q. d. who had warred against Israel) so to fulfill the prophecie of Balaam, his latter end should be, that he perish for ever. Now Saul having destroyed the Amalekites, and contrary to the express commandment of God,Num. 24. 20. reserved Agag alive; Samuel, as well to fulfill that command, as to compleat the decree of God delivered (as before) by Balaam, hews him in pieces, &c. And other sense cannot rationally be drawn out of this place; for Agag had never any thing in the Nation of the Israelites whereon to ground a Tyranny, and consequently could not be slain as a Tyrant, as the Gentleman would have it: And so I think this Example quoted to as little purpose, as the three former.
De iure, &c. l. 2. c. 74.The next is that of Jehoiada’s slaying Athaliah. To which (besides what Grotius saith of it, that it was done as Protector to the young King Joash) I give this Answer; That when Athaliah saw her son Ahaziah was slain by Jehu, she destroyed all the seed Royal of the house of Judah (Joash only excepted:) which, that it was done with an intent to ingross the Scepter to herself, and her own line, will easily appear out of the same Text, Behold, the Kings son shall reign,2 Cht. 23. 3. as the Lord hath said of the sons of David: And what that was, we may read 2 Sam. 17. 16. where Nathan speaking by message from God to David he saith, Thy house and thy kingdom shall be established for ever, &c. both which Athaliah attempted to destroy, and therefore justly slain. But, saith our Author, He had no authority for doing it either from God, or the Sanhedrim. To which I answer, That if he had no authority, the less is it to be drawn into president;Luk. 1. 2. for though a man in many actions may do justum, yet if he have no warrant for it, ’tis but injustè. But what wrong will it be to the Text, to suppose God did particularly reveal himself in this thing to the High Priest, when we find that he discovered the birth of John the Baptist to an inferior Priest, of the eight course; and that our Saviour should die for the people, to Caiphas; for saith the Text,Joh. 12. 51. He spake it not of himself, but being High Priest that year, he prophesied &c. Besides, upon a consultation with Urim and Thummim, though the King, or Father of the Consistory might propose the matter, yet the Priest only had the power to resolve: And therefore why may it not (without intrenchment upon the Text) be supposed, that God had discovered himself concerning this thing, unto Jehoiada? But supposing he had not, Jehoiada was High Priest,Jew. antiq. l. 1. c. 8. and had no small influence upon the people; and therefore knowing the revealed will of God, which he had said concerning David, (Thy house and thy kingdom shall be established for ever, &c.) it was authority enough for him, to do what he did; and consequently, was not the act of a private man. Then, for the authority of the Sanhedrim, which our Author saith was wanting also, it doth not appear to me out of Scripture, or ought else (and I believe it will be impossible for him to prove) that they had any power themselves over their Kings; and consequently, if they had given any to Jehoiada, they must have given what they had not, which could not be: Nay (though they were not put down till Herod) yet they had a power superior to them, even at their first institution: For Moses was none of them, but chief over them; and therefore after his death, they chose one, whom they called the Prince of the Seventy:Jew. antiq. l. 5. c. 4. Deu. 33. 5. which possibly might be intended by that Text, where speaking of Moses it is said, that he was King in Jeshurun (q.d. among the righteous.) But to make this more clear, it is said that Samuel judged Israel, and went from year to year Circuit to Bethel, Gilgal, &c.1 Sam. 7. 162. Which could not have been done, if he had not had a superintendencie over them. From whence I conclude, that they had no power over the Crown themselves, and consequently Jehoiada could not expect to receive any from them.
There remains only one, and that is of Ehud’s slaying Eglon; which at first sight, and as our Author hath delivered it, may seem a little to the purpose: But he gives us the Text, without the Context; for if we read eight or nine verses backward,Jud. 3. 25. we shall find that the children of Israel had done evil in the sight of the Lord, and that therefore the Lord strengthened Eglon King of Moah against them.—And afterwards, when they cryed unto the Lord, He raised them up a deliverer, Ehud, &c. See! The Text names God in both places; 1. As the Author of their punishment, God strengthened Eglon, &c. 2. As the Author of their delivery, God raised Ehud, &c.—. And therefore till he can shew me as good an Authority to prove his doctrine, pardon me if I say, neither this also will make for his purpose: For if it should, it would serve as well to warrant the Assasination and murdering of all Kings, good or bad, when ever the people shall be discontented with them: And if themselves may be Judges, and they that are to give the sentence, make the case, Good God! how would the World be pestered with Tyrants? how many good Princes would be daily suppressed, by those, by whom they ought to be supported? There should not be a Prince milde, and religious, but he should be deemed a Fool, and consequently unfit to rule; whereas if he take care that his Laws (especially such as are penal) be duly executed, or put any man to death for traiterous attempts against his person, we should have the Traitors proclaimed Martyrs, and the Prince exclaimed against as cruel; A very Nero made up of dirt and blood: He shall not be favorable to tender consciences, but he shall be decried for Toleration: On the other side, he shall not urge uniformity, and decency, but he shall be railed at for superstition: In a word, because there is no Virtue so equilibrious, but hath some flexure to one of the extremes; we should have the extreme publish’d, and the vertue silenc’d: whereby in short time it would come to this pass, that he shall not do anything against the good liking of the people, but it shall be accounted Tyranny, of which (as I said before) if themselves may be Judges, and withall have such examples as these imposed upon them, that it is lawful to kill, and destroy such persons, we should have it so frequently acted, that the Cynick might once more put a candle in his lanthorn, and sooner find what he look’d for, then any (besides a mad man) that could be drawn to rule. And therefore to close this point, we must know, there are many things in holy Writ, which are in no case to be drawn into president, being not altogether so warrantable in themselves, but as Divines say, set down rather for our caution, then example: For, if it were otherwise, we cannot but justifie Romulus his taking away the daughters of the Sabines, for the Benjamites did the same to the daughters of Shiloh,Jud. 22. 23. upon the same occasion: Nor can we condemn the same Romulus, for killing his elder brother Remus, when we shall be told that Solomon used the same policie, towards his elder brother Adoniah.1 Kings 2. 25. But as I said before, they are things rather of caution, then example; and therefore
——Satic est retigisse; Revertar.
The next thing I meet with, is an Answer of some Objections. The first of which is, That these Examples, are of men inspired by God, and therefore they had a call, and authority for their actions, which we cannot pretend to. To which he frames this Answer. 1. If God commanded these things, ’tis a sign they are lawful. 2. That none of the persons themselves alledged any other cause for what they did then the justice of the actions themselves, and though they were but the acts of private persons, yet they are justifiable by that common call which all men have, to do all actions of justice that are in their power when the ordinary course of justice fails. To which I Answer, that because God commanded these things immediately to them, it is no sufficient warrant for us to do the same. God commanded Abraham to sacrifice his Son Isaac, and yet it is not warrant enough, for any Enthusiast to do the same, upon pretence of a like revelation.Hos. 1. [Editor: illegible word] So God commanded the Prophet to take to him a wife of Whoredoms, &c. which he did (for a sign to the people, &c.) yet I conceive it no excuse, to justifie any mans error, for falling into that ditch, only because the Prophet was commanded into it. I might add divers more, but I think this taste sufficient: 2. As to the second, because he brings no new matter to prove it, but the same Examples which I have handled before, I shall refer you back to them; onely adding this,2 Kings 9. 7. that Jehu though he were a Captain of the Host, yet he made no insurrection against Ahah, untill he had a positive command from God, and anointed King to that purpose.
The next Objection that he makes is, That the not opposing the Government, but submitting to his Highness Laws, is a tacit consent, &c. To which he gives this Answer, That is cannot be presumed, but the same-hath been done in all usurpations whatever. To which I answer, we must make a difference, between an implicite, and tacite consent, of which kind is this the Gentleman speaks of in this place: and an actual consent, of which I have spoken formerly, page 8. And therefore as to the first, it cannot be expected, but that the people will follow their business whoever sit at Helm, as being not able to live without it, and if they can live without being opprest, ’tis as much as they care for, let him take the Government, that will, or can: but as to the second when the people, besides the doing those common things (before) shall according to the custom of their Country, (the office of the chief Magistracy being vacant and empty) set up any man, whom by a general consent, they shall declare their Ruler, and invest him with those ensigns of Majesty, peculiar onely to such an Office, and Person; (all which and more the People of England have given his Highness) I say in such a case, the consent is actual, and the people have bound themselves up, to yeeld him subjection, and defence. And therefore as to his examples of Caligula, Nero, and the Israelites under Eglon; the two former were never so much as thought to be Tyrants in Title:Vid. Suet. in Calig. & Narone. For, besides that both of them were of the blood of Julius Cæsar, and adopted Cæsars, they were after the death of the Emperors their predecessors, declared the same themselves, by the Senate and the Army; but for that of the Israelites under Eglon, it was no other, then a constrained subjection, to one that had over-run them, and therefore could not but be expected from a conquered people, with whose interest it stood, to be quiet at any rate: But that the Israelites gave any faith, or actual consent to Eglon, there is not the least light that way, throughout the whole story; and so his own examples do not agree amongst themselves. Lastly, to close this second point, I cannot but observe, how often the Gentleman hath given Machiavel, the nicknames of his Highness Apostle Evangelist, and Practice of Piety; where it will more probably appear, that he hath made him his own Vade mecum, and is better read in him then in the Bible: for if his quotations of the one, had bin no better to his purpose then the other, I might have safely transcribed them to my margent, and they would have served as much to prove, my Part of the question, as they have done his. And so I come to the third Point I proposed to my self,The unlawfulness, &c. wherein I shall prove the unlawfulness of the Act; as being a thing abhorred, even of Heathens. 2. Against the positive Rules of Scripture, and examples therein. 3. The example of primitive Christians. 4. The Laws of Nations. 5. The Lawes of this Land.
For the first, If there were no more in it then the very dishonourableness and treachery of the action (as to spill the blood of War, in Peace, by poison or a knife) yet the Heathens themselves have been so far from acting it, that they have refused it, when offered; And the Reporters of such actions, have seldom named them without some Stigma, or brand of infamy. Examples in this kind we have divers.Flo. l. 1. c. 18. Medicum venale Regis Phyrrhi caput afferentem, Curius remisit, &c. (saith Florus) When the Romans made war against King Pyrrhus, his Physitian made an offer to Curius, to poison him, for a sum of money, but (so detestable were such acts of treachery, and cowardice, to a Roman spirit,Tac. Ao. 3. that) he sent him away: So when a Prince of the Catti would have undertaken the death of Arminius, Tiberius rejected him; equalling himself in that glory with the old Generals, saith Tacitus: So Galba when the Army had proclaimed Otho,Tac. Hist. l. 1. c. 7. and he in a great confusion went to appease the tumult, he was met by a Souldier, who brandishing a bloody sword, cried aloud, he had slain Otho; yet all the reward or thanks he received for it (though spoken no doubt out of a good design to quiet the people) was, a composed look, and these words, Commilite, quis jussit? My Friend (quoth he) who bad thee?Q. Curtiue l. 4. It was this which Alexander threw by way of infamy to Darius: Ye undertake (saith he) impious Wars, and though ye have Arms, ye bid money for the heads of your enemies. And the same is that censure, which Livy gives of Perseus the last King of the Macedons,T. Livius l. 42. Quem non justum bellum gerere, Regio animo &c. A person (saith he) whom we found to carry on the War, not honourably, and like a King, but privily, and like a Robber, with all the abhorred villanies of Butcherings, and poysonings.Flo. l. 2. c. 17. Neither hath the same Florus, whom I quoted before, less sting, when writing the transactions of Spain, and how Viriathus had well nigh over-run it, and assailed the Romans for fourteen years together, with fire, and sword, till at last being distressed by Fabius Maximus. Servilius Cæpio his Successor, to make the quicker dispatch of the War, procured him to be murdered; by which means (saith he) Violata victoria est, &c. The victory was stained: Neither is that brand, which Valerius Maximus throws upon the same story, ought inferior;Vol. Max. l. 9. c. 7. He deserved not the Victory but bought it. So in their Wars in Asia, against Aristonicus, Marcus Aquilius having poisoned the Well-heads of certain Cities, whereby to compel them to yeeld, he saith thus of it, Quæ res, ut maturam, ita infamem fecit victorian:Flor. l. 2. c. 20. quippe contra fas Deûm &c. Tha fact, as it ripened the victory, so it made it famous; for against the Laws of the Gods, and custom of Ancestors, it blemisheth the lustre of the Roman Arms, preserved till then religiously pure. To come nearer home, the Mahometans make it a part of their Religion, to propagate their Sect by the sword; but yet still by honorable Wars, never by villanies and secret murthers: Nay upon this ground the Saracen Prince, of whom the name of Assassins is derived, having made use of such villaines, for the murthering of divers Princes in the East (by one of whom Amurah the first was slain, and Edward the first of England, wounded;) was put down, by the common consent of the Mahometan Princes. But what shall we say if the very Heathens have not onely abominated such actions, but advised submission and obedience to Princes though never so bad? Ferenda Regum ingenia,Annal. 12: saith Tacitus, We must bear with the disposition of Princes. And again,Id. Hist. l. 4. We must pray that we have good Emperors, but endure the bad.Id. H. l. 4. And again, Quomodo sterilitatem & cætera naturæ mala, it a luxum, & avaritiam dominantium &c. We must bear (saith he) with the luxury and avarice of Princes as we do with barren years, and those other evils of nature whch we cannot help. There will be vices as long as men, but they will not last always, and are recompensed with the intervenience of better things; and to this purpose excellent is that of Claudian,
——— Quamvis crudelibus, æquè
Paretur dominis ——
And therefore to close this; if the very Heathens have abominated those barbarous acts, of destroying their enemies, by treachery, and murder, and on the other side have advised submission, and obedience to Princes, although bad; how shall they rise in judgment against those Christians, that not onely hold it lawful to destroy their enemies, by such base ways, but even their rightful Prince whom they are bound to defend? In a word, what excuse can they make to themselves, who knowing the judgment of God (that they which commit such things are worthy of death) not only do the same, but take pleasure in them that do them?
2. It is against the positive Rules of Scripture, and examples therein; and here I argue thus. Whatever we are commanded to pray for, or perform any duty to, we are (à molto fortiori) forbidden to destroy: but, we are commanded to pray for Kings, (nay even the worst of Kings) and to perform divers acts of duty towards them: and therefore (à moulto fortiori) we are forbidden to destroy them. Machiavel tells us that when life, liberty,on. Lio. 687. and safety, come in question, there ought to be no consideration had of just, or unjust; pittiful, or cruel; honorable, or dishonorable; But the Scripture teacheth us another Lesson; Captives, to pray for the peace of them that held them in captivity, but bids them nowhere, to lay violent hands upon them, though they got thereby, so dear, and precious a thing as liberty:Jer. 29. 7. And this precept doth Jeremiah give, to them of the captivity, that they should pray for the peace of Babylon, where they were then captives:Baruch 1. 11. And the same did Baruch (which thought it be Apocrypha, was never denied to be of good moral use) write to the Jews, that they should pray for the life of Nebuchadonosor, and for the life of Baltasar his Son, that their days might be upon Earth as the days of Heaven: And adds in the next verse, that they might live under his shadow, and the shadow of his Son.Ezra 6. 50. An example of this we have of the Jews in holy Writ, who were wont to pray for the life of the Kings that held them in captivity, and for the life of their Sons: And another pertinent to this purpose, out of Josephus; that when Petronius came to set up Caligula’s image in the Temple, they who would die rather then that should be done, being asked whether they would wage War with the Emperor, answered no, but on the other side, offered sacrifice twice a day for his safety: And that we may see they did no more under the Law, then what was warranted by the Gospel, let us peruse that of St. Paul to Timothy, where he waves the Authority of an Apostle, and he that might have commanded, exhorts; I exhort therefore, &c.1 Tim. 2. 1, 2. Nay, and as if this might not be thought perswasive enough, he descends yet a little lower, and makes himself less then the least of the Apostles; he entreats (for the word [Editor: illegible Greek word], will bear that sense also;) and having by a Rhetorical exaggeration heaped four words one on the neck of another, signifying the same thing, onely to add the more vehemency to the exhortation, that their prayers should be as general as their charity, extend to all persons, to all men; he begins with Kings in the next verse, and stops not here but goes on ([Editor: illegible Greek word]) and all that are in authority; and sure if there had not been a necessity of the duty, he would not have prest it at such a time, when he that sate at the stern, he that was [Editor: illegible Greek word], was no other then that monster of Mankind, Claudius Nere: and yet for him would the Apostle have prayers be made, and not onely Prayers, but Thanksgivings.
Exo. 22. 28.Secondly, We are commanded not to speak evill of them: Diis non detrahes, & Principi populi tui non maledicet. Thou shalt not revile the Gods, nor speak evill of the Prince of thy people. And what the Text intends by that appellation of Gods, we may read, Psal 82. 6. where speaking of Governors, God faith, I have said ye are Gods,In Polit. &c. And in the same sense is it used by Plato, [Editor: illegible Greek word], The King is as a God amongst men. As also by the Poet
Ovid. Met.Cæsar in urbe sua Deus est.——
The practice of this we have in the Apostle St. Paul, who when the High Priest had commanded him to be smitten, though he could not contain a little passion (the natural effect of honestly and innocence) yet as soon as he understands him to be the High Priest, see, how suddenly he checks himself,Act. 23. 5. I wist not Brethren that he was the High Priest, for it is written thou shalt not speak evil of the Ruler of thy people.Eceles. 10. 20. Nay, Solemon goes further, and sets not only a bridle upon lips, but a curb upon our thoughts, Curse not the King, no not in thy thought, &c.
Rom. 13.Thirdly, We are commanded to be subject to them, not only for wrath, but conscience sake; and the reason of this we have both in the first verse, For there is no power but of God, as also in the fourth verse, For he is the Minister of God to thee, for good.
And here, before I go farther, it will be requisite to remove some stumbling blocks, which lie in my way; and dispel a couple of Scotch mists, which notwithstanding, I beleeve every man, that is not thick-sighted, will be able to look through of himself. The first of which is this,Object. 1. That the Apostle speaketh here, De ipsa Magistratuum potestate, non de mali, male potestatem gerentibus, So Buchanan.
Sol.To which I answer, That it is plain he speaks of both; of the Magistrate then in being, as well as of Magistrates in general, whose authority he acknowledgeth, and appealeth to his judgment-seat;Act. 25. 11. and as I have shewn but a little before, enjoyned prayers,2 Pet. 2. 13. even for Nero: but if there were any doubt, St. Peter makes it clear, who bids us, submit our selves to every Ordinance of man, for the Lords sake: And the reason of this he layeth down, v. 15. For so (saith he) is the will of God, that with well doing we may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men. In which place, though he calls it a humane Ordinance, it is, Non quòd humanisùs inventa fuerit, sed quòd propria hominum est digesta, & ordinata vivends ratio. So Calvin.
Obj. 2.But you must consider the times wherein the Apostle wrote this: It was the infancie of the Church, when Christians were for the most part poor and weak, and not able to resist. So Buchanan again. (A dainty juggle.)
But contrary to this we must know,Sol. that all Morals in Scripture are catholique in respect of persons and times; and what was unlawful then, is unlawful now; it was unlawful to be a Drunkard then, the same now, & sic de cæteris.
Obj. 13.Lastly, The world hath not wanted others, who have declared, That Christ, and his Apostles were subject to Princes and Magistrates, de facto, but not de jure. So Bellarmine.
Sol.Which, how probable it is, will easily appear in this, 1.Rom. 13. 2. That the words are general ([Editor: illegible Greek word]) every soul; and therefore include not this, or that, but every man, every estate, and condition. 2. The word ([Editor: illegible Greek word]) be subject, is a Verb passive, and implies, that this subjection may be forced, where men do not give it willingly: For as Princes have power, so they have right to exercise that power, nay they do so naturally depend one upon t’other, that they are inconsistent asunder. To instance but in one thing, and that is the honor and respects we give to Princes and Magistrates, which, though it be a duty we owe them, yet lies in the giver, not in the receiver: And therefore, I should think that Prince did much deserve it, who had no more to shew for it, then the courtesie of the people; who, like Carriers horses, though they know their road well enough, yet very often expect to be remembred of it, with the spur. Excellent to this purpose is that of no mean Statist, who observed, That all the Prophets who were armed, prevailed, but those that were otherwise, were too weak, wanting a sword to back their doctrine; and therefore (saith he) it behoves a Prince to be so provided, that when the people will believe no longer, he be able to compell them. We may say the same of obedience, &c.
Rom. 13. 7.Lastly, we are commanded to pay them Tribute and Custom: Reader therefore, &c. Tribute to whom tribute, Custom to whom custom is due, &c. And this the Apostle calls ([Editor: illegible Greek word]) debts; to shew, That it is not a thing of our own choice, whether we will do it, or not; but an act that is incumbeat upon us, and favours nothing of courtesie, but of duty. To add but one example for all, behold a greater then S. Paul, our Saviour himself, not only commands it to be done,Mat. 21. 21. Give unto Cæsar, &c. but that he might not seem to enjoin more to others, then what he had first done himself, he gives us his own example,ver. 24, 27. Mat. 17. where though he knew himself exempted from Tribute, yet lest he might seem to offend, he bids Peter cast his hook into the sea, and take up the first fish that cometh up, and when thou hast opened his mouth (saith our Saviour) thou shalt find a piece of money; Take that and give unto them for me, and for thee. From all which I conclude thus; That if we are environed with such a cloud of witnesses, that tell us there is a duty we owe to Princes; if we have the examples of Jeremiab, and S. Paul, who enjoined prayers for them; of the antient Jews, that made them; of the Apostle, that checkt himself for but speaking irreverently to the High Priest; of S. Peter that commands us to be subject to them; of the same S. Paul. that enjoined Tribute to be paid them; and lastly, of our Lord and Master, who not only commanded it, but did it himself, and that not to a good King,Surton. in Tiber. but to Tiberius, (one that came short of Nero in nothing, but that he lived before him, and drew that Original, which the other did but Copy after him:) Certainly by the stronger reason we are forbidden to rebel against them, to lay violent hands upon them, or to destroy them. But because Examples (as the Schools say) teach as well as Rules, and I think no man so impudent as to deny, but obedience is due to good Kings; I shall in this place give some examples of such bad Kings as we meet with in Scripture, and yet the holy men therein have been so far from not giving them obedience; that they have thought their persons sacred and inviolable. Pharaoh was a cruel oppressor of the children of Israel, as who, not only toiled them with making of bricks, but to adde to their slavery, denied them a part of the materials (to wit) straw, and yet expected his full tale; besides which, he commanded their midwives to destroy all the males, as soon as born; abused Moses and Aaron that came to mediate for them, and blasphemed that God that sent them: yet the people make neither open attempts against him by Rebellion, as they might well have done, being more, and mightier then the Egyptians;Exo. 1. 9. nor private against his person, by Assassination, though Moses that had the freedom of access, might have done it by a dagger; or that lived in his Court, might have compast it by poison; or that wrought so many miracles, destroyed him by another. No, they only cry unto the Lord, and he returns them this answer, I will be glorified upon Pharaoh, &c. but says not, Ye shall be glorified, &c. thereby intending,1 Sam. 15. 31. that be the Prince never so great an oppressor, the people ought to submit to him, and leave their cause to God, who in his time will right them, and deliver them, as he did the Israelites from Pharaoh. But to proceed, Saul was a wicked King, and had his Kingdom rent from his for his disobedience, and yet Samuel gave him his accustomed veneration and attendance. So David,1 Sam. 24. 6. notwithstanding the Kingdom was transferred from Saul to him,1 Sam. 26. 7. yet he spared his life twice, when it was in his power to have slain him; and as the Text saith,2 Sam. 1. 14. his heart smote him for but cutting off the skirt of his garment: And after, caused the Amalekite to be slain, who upon request, and pitty, had lent his hand (as he said) to help forward that voluntary death, which he had designed to himself, that he might not fall into the hands of the Philistines. So Nebuchadnezzar King of Assyria, who was so violent a persecutor of the Jews, as having wasted all Palestine, taken Ierusalem, slain the King, burnt the Temple, led the people captive into Chaldea, where he erected his golden Image, &c.Ezck. 17. 19, 20. yet Ezechiel with bitter terms, abhorreth the disloyalty of Zedechiah, because he revolted from this Nebuchadnezzar, whose Homager nnd Tributary he was. From all which rules and examples it is manifest, that there is a duty owing even to the worst of Princes; and if we are forbidden the less, we are forbidden the greater; if we must not offend them with the tongue, we must not offend with the hand. In a word, be the Prince what he will, we ought to obey him, if for nothing else, yet because it is the command of God: Only this distinction may be added, That look what honor we give to evil Princes, we do it not to man, but to God himself, in reverence to his ordinance: And this was excellently exprest, by that Emblem of the Egyptians, viz. An Ass carrying the Image of the Goddess Isis, and the people falling down to worship it; the Inscription of which was, Non tibi, sed Religioni.
Thirdly, It is against the Example of the Primitive Christians, who it is likely understood the Apostles meaning, as well as any else, yet in all those Persecutions, which attended the infancy of the Church, had recourse to no other weapons, then tears, and prayers, I,In Apolog. cap. 30. and that too for their Emperors, although Persecutors. Oramus (saith Tertullian) pro omnibus imperatoribus, pro ministris corum & potestatibus. We pray (saith he) for all Emperors, for their Servants, and powers: And what it was they prayed for, he tells us in another place; Vitam illis prolixam, Imperium securum, &c. That God would give them a long life, a secure Empire, a safe House, valiant Armies, a faithful Councel, an honest People, a quiet World, and whatever else are the desires of a man, or an Emperor. Imprudent no doubt, if not impudent were the same Tertullian, if before the Emperors, who could not be ignorant of the truth, he had so confidently dared to tell a lye: If we were willing (saith he) to use open hostility, should we want numbers, and forces? We have filled your Cities, Islands, Castles, Towns, Camps, Palace, Senate, all your places, but your Temples; and if our forces were unequal to yours, we might easily make War upon you, when we are so willing to be slain, if our Religion did as well allow us to kill, as be killed. Famous to this purpose is the example of the Thebane Legion,Grot. de jure belli &c. l: 1. c. 71. which consisted of 6666 Souldidiers, all Christians; (a reasonable Army) yet when Maximianus Cæsar commanded them to sacrifice to false Gods, rather then do it, they suffered themselves to be decimated, and every tenth man-slain without the least resistance: In which, the speech of Exuperius the Ensign-bearer, is worthy of our remembrance, O Emperor (saith he) desperation which is most valerous in dangers, hath not armed us against thee: Behold, we have weapons in our hands, yet do we not resist, because we had rather die, then overcome; and perish Innocents, then live Rebels. The sense of which made Diorysius Alexandrinus complain of Gallus the Emperor, Quod sanctos viros, pro Regni sui pace supplices, persecutuz sit: In a word, he that desires to be farther satisfied, in the obedience, and submission of the Primitive Christians, to Nero, Domitian, Trajan, Adrian, Severus, Maximinius, Decius, Valerian, Aurelian, and Diocletian, under those Ten Persecutions, let him but read Dr. Hakewels Scutum Regium, lib. 2. and there he may reap a plentiful satisfaction.
Fourthly, It is against the very Laws of Nations; the Civil Law saith, Conjurationes omnium proditionum odiosissimæ, & perniciocissimæ. Conspiracies, are of all Treasons, the most hateful, and most dangerous; And therefore, they that have written concerning Ambassadors, say, That if an Ambassador, or a man that cometh in upon the highest safe conduct, do practise matter of sedition in a State, yet he is to be remanded: But, if he conspire against the life of the Prince by violence, or poison, he is to be justiced. Quia odium est omni privelegio majus. Because the detestableness of the action, is beyond all priviledge. (But the Laws of England go further, and say, the very raising of a rebellion,V. Cook Instit 4. c. 26. is enough to make him lose his priviledge; and so it was held in the Bishop of Rosses case, Hil. 13. Eliz.) By the same Laws of Nations, a Souldier, who hath resisted his Captain, willing to chastise him,Grot. de jure &c. l. 1. c. 62. if he hath laid hold on his rod, is cashiered: if he purposely brake it, or laid violent hands upon his Captain, dies; And from hence, any man may make the Argument, That if it be unlawful for a Souldier, but to resist his Captain; how much more unlawful is it for him to lay violent hands upon his Prince, to whom, not onely himself, but his Captain owe the duty of subjection, and defence? And to this purpose is the same Grotius very positive in another place,Id. l. 3. c. 3. where, though he saith it is lawful, by the Laws of Nature, and Nations, to kill ones enemy every where; yet speaking concerning attempts against the persons of Princes, by murder, or otherwise; he calls it perfidiousness; and saith, That though Custom may overpower Laws, nevertheless that Custom, hath staid beneath the right of killing: And concludes, that it is a violation of the Law, not of Nature onely, but of Nations. But to proceed: Although I cannot properly call the constitutions of the Church of of Rome, the Laws of Nations, in regard they are of force no where, but where the faith of Rome is retained: yet considering how great an influence it hath in Christendom (and probably more then ordinary upon our Author) I shall, to avoid multiplicity of heads instance in one or two of them in this place: I say then, that the Church of Rome that hath been so often branded by us Protestants (if I may use so new a name, for so antient a faith) as fautors of the Doctrine of Regicide,Suarez. yet all agree that though he be a Tyrant in Regiment, he cannot be resisted or killed without a sentence precedent. Nay, Ogleby the Jesuite goes further, who being arraigned in the time of K. James (in Scotland) and asked the question whether an Heretick King being excommunicated, might be slain, though to save his life he would not say it was unlawful, yet he confest the Doctors of their Church were divided about it, and had not determined it; wherein, it is probable he spake a greater truth, then he intended; for if we shall look back upon the ancient Bishops, and Popes of Rome (before they had gotten the knack of moderating in the quarrels of Princes, and by a handsom twisting the Gospel, and the interest of the Chair together, found a way to cheat both, and to justifie that, brought up the devise of depriving such as would not stand to their sentence, and interdicting their Kingdoms) we shall find, that they were so far from thinking it lawful to oppose, or murder their Emperors, be they what they would, that they injoyned prayers for them; particular, for Julian, and Anastatius; the one an Apostate, the other an Heretick, and divers others; nay, Gelasius, Bishop of Rome, in an Epistle of his to the latter, stiles him, Clementissimum, gloriosissimum, Augustum, & Dei in terris Vicarium; and beseecheth God,V. Hakew. Scur. Reg. l. 3. c: 8. ut regnum ejus, & saluem perpetuà protectione custodias. But to proceed; By the Constitutions of the same Church, if a Confessor divulge any thing that is committed to him upon auricular confession, he shall be burnt: yet if it be matter of Treason, or conspiracy against the life of the Prince, he is bound to reveal it, and such discovery shall be evidence enough to arraign any man upon it; which if he shall confess, he shall suffer as a Traitor; so odious is even the very thought of conspiracy: An example of this we have in Bodinus.De Repub. l. 2. c. 5. There was saith he a Gentleman of Normandy confest himself to a Franciscan, of having had a purpose, to have killed Francis the First, of France, of which having repented, he received absolution: After which, the Frier having revealed it to the King, the Gentleman was sent for, who upon confession of the fact, was turned over to the Parliament of Paris, where he had sentence of death for it, and was executed accordingly. And the like we finde in holy Writ, where Bagathan, and Tharez, were both hanged,Est. 2. 11. onely for seeking to lay hands on King Ahasuerus.
Lastly, It is against the very Laws of this Nation: For as I have said, the Law that respects a King de facto, and not de jure, gives him the same preheminencies, as if he were a King de jure; nay, presumes him to be so, because he is in possession: For otherwise, the Laws would be very weak in this point, to think him a fit person to protect others, that were not able to defend himself; and consequently give him no other advantage by that place of eminence, then to make him the fairer mark for every Traytor to level at. We shall therefore examine what the Law in this case hath always been: Before the Conquest it was such; Qui capiti,Inter leges Alver. c. 41. aut saluti Regis, perfidio, è sive solus, sive servis, aut sicariù mercede conductis, stipatus insidiabitur, vità & fortunis ejus omnibus privatar. Whosoever, either by himself, or by his Servants, or cut-throats hired to that purpose, shall traiterously attempt the life or safety of the King, let him be deprived of his life, and all his estate. Nay the now Law saith, that if a man be killed in open Rebellion, without judgment, yet he may be attainted by Parliament;1 Hen. 4. and so was Thomas Holland Earl of Kent; and shall suffer such forfeitures of estate, as is by such Act specified; or if the Chief Justice of the Upper Bench (who is the chief Coroner of England) shall upon his own view, of a body slain in open rebellion,V. Sir. Cook l. 4. 57. b. make a record thereof, and return it into the said Bench, he that is so slain, shall forfeit his Lands, and Goods. And so it was resolved in the time of Hen. [Editor: illegible word] by Fyneux Chief Justice. Wherein we may note, that if rebellions (which have this of commendation in them, that they are prosecuted by men, and resolution, and not by the barbarous, low waies of Assassination, or poisoning) are so severly punished; how great a stock of impudence must that man have, that dare defend such acts of treachery, and baseness, and not think them worthy of a more severe inquiry, in as much as there is no fence against them, being of the nature of thunder-claps, the blow struck before ’tis thought of, and the work done before we hear the report: But to avoid ravelling into too much Law, I shall instance onely in one more, and that is the 25. E. 3. which is for the most part declaratory of the ancient Law, and saith, that if a man doth compass, or imagine the death of the King, &c. and be thereof provably attainted, by open Act, it is Treason. Now the question upon this Statute will be double. 1. whether his Highness be within the perview of that Statute, because it speaketh onely of a King. 2. admitting he be, whether the declaring and publishing that it is lawful to make him away, and the inciting the people to do the same, be a sufficient overt act within this Statute? To both which I answer affirmatively; and therefore for the first, however the Statute speaks of nostre Sur le Roy (besides what I have said concerning this before, I shall add, that it is not to be taken strictly and literally, as if it intended nothing else, but that individual word King; for then neither Queen Mary, nor Queen Elizabeth could have been within it,Inst. 4. 7. but must have had some other Act (as King Philip had) to have made the compassing their deaths to be Treason: but, by equity, to extend to any other chief Magistrate, that shall be entrusted with the management and execution of that office: And so, the compassing the death of him that is Protector, during the minority of a King, is Treason within this Statute.Vid. Inst. 2, p. 395. And the same of a Queen Regent, as I said before. But if any man shall object, that the Statute is penal, and therefore ought not to be taken by equity: I answer, That where it is more beneficial, then prejudicial to the greater number of people, and may well stand with the Rules of Law, it shall be taken by Equity. And so the 1 Rich. 2. c. 12. which gives an Action against the Warden of the Fleet, for Escapes, hath been extended by Equity to all other Goalers. So a latter clause of the same Statute,Plow 36, [Editor: illegible word] 25 E. 3. c. 2. that declares it to be Petty Treason for a Servant to kill his Master, hath been construed to be the same, in that Servant who shall kill the wife of his Master. I might add divers others, which being too many to set down, I refer my Reader to further satisfaction in the margent.Dyer 281. Now what greater benefit can come to a Nation, then that He be safe, in whose preservation the common safety of all is concerned? What greater interest then that, that Head should be defended, whose broken sleeps, give us security in our own? and which if it happen to be disturbed, the whole body is out of order. Excellent to this purpose is that of Virgil, concerning his Commonwealth of Bees:Inst. 3. pt. 20 5 Rep. 77 [Editor: illegible word] Rep. 34.
— Rege incolumi, mens omnibus una est;
Amisso, rupere fidem, &c. ——
In a word, A Prince is the same to a State, which the Primum mobile is to Nature; If it be never so little out of order, all the lesser Orbs must stand still, and consequently fall to their first nothing. 2. The next question will be, whether a Declaration by publique writing, That it is lawful to make his Highness away, and an inciting the people thereto, be a sufficient overt Act within this Statute. To which I answer, as formerly, that it is. For though it hath been said, that words may make an Heretick, but not a Traitor, yet I take the case to be otherwise here: For here are more then general words (which are often either forgotten, or mistaken, and concerning which the Witnesses seldom agree in their evidence) there being a positive determination of the point, that it is lawfull, and an actual invitation of any man to venture upon it, as an act of honor and merit: And so hath it been held formerly: when Cardinal Pool, in his Book of the Supremacie of the Pope, had incited Charls the Emperor,Inst. 3. 14. then preparing war against the Turk, to bend his force against his natural Lord Hen. 8. 1.27 H. 8. That the writing of that Book was a sufficient overt act within this Statute: Nay,In his letter to King James, and in his Charge against Talbot in Cam. Sted. the Lord Bacon goeth a little further, who saith, That whoever shall affirm in diem, or sub conditione. that the King may be destroyed, is a Traitor de præsenti: And to this purpose he urgeth the Duke of Buckingham’s case; That if the King caused him to be arrested of Treason, he would stab him: And that of Elizabeth Barton (whom the people called. The holy Maid of Kent) who said, That if Hen. 8. took not again Katherine Dowager, he should be no longer King. For (saith he) though the act be future, and contingent, yet the Treason of compassing, and imagining is present, and contrary to that Allegiance, which (as he saith elswhere) must be independent, and not provisional and conditional. And therefore much more stronger should we give the severest judgment upon this, by how much the more it surmounteth all others, as being hardest to be avoided: For other Treasons meet with many impediments; for if it be such as may be attempted by one, it often happens, that he fails in opportunity, and resolution, and sometimes that he is touched with remorse: And if there be more then one in it, it is ten to one but it comes to light: For the persons that engage in such designs, are generally Discontents; and as soon as a Conspiracie is revealed to such a one, he hath at the same time a means given him to work his own content, by revealing his Accomplices; for, seeing certain gain on the one side, and only doubt, and danger on the other, he had need be a rare Friend, or an implacable Enemy that can conceal it: But for a man to publish and maintain, that it may be lawful for a Subject to attempt the life of his Prince, is a venemous sop which enters into the hearts of all those that are any way prepared, or predisposed to be Traitors: For if one man faint, another may dare; if one man hath not the opportunity, another may have; if one man relent, another may be desperate; and if four or five cannot keep council now, it may light upon a Knot of more inveterate Male-contents, that may do it hereafter. In a word, all other Treasons have their Critical minutes, beyond which they are nothing; but this doctrine may outlive the Author, and infect some one an hundred years hence, though it may fail for the present: And therefore not unjustly punished so severely by our Laws,4. The evil fate that hath attended such persons, &c. as thinking him a person fit for nothing, but the severest punishment they can inflict, who by so barbarous an act, as murdering the Prince, doth what in him lies, not only to subvert them, but the Commonwealth with them.
In the last place, I come to give a few instances of the evil fate that hath attended such persons as have had their hand in the blood of Princes. How many have there been,[Editor: illegible word] in Cæs. ad sinem. Plu. in Cæs. Idem in Bruto. Flor. l. 4. c. 6. who having raised the people, and perswaded them to lay violent hands upon their Prince, upon the score of Tyranny, though they may have kept them within bounds for a time, yet (like young Conjurers) have been torne in pieces by their own Spirits,Precop. de bello Vand. lib. 1. for want of other work: An Example of this we have in the Conspirators against Cæsar, who were all generally slain by that People, whose liberty they had so much pretended: Others again to save them a labor, (smitten at last with the shame, and conscience of the fact) slew themselves with the same Dag which they had provided for Cæsar: And though Brutus (that Parricide) miss a death from both;Palmer. in Dion. yet the indignation of the People shall deny him Rome, and the evil Genius of Cæsar not forsake him till Philippi. And no better suecess had Maximus, who having slain Valentinian the younger, Emperor in the East; though he had cause enough to stamp a noble title upon the Action, and have married his Revenge to Justice, in as much as Valentinian had debauch’d his wife,Idem in [Editor: illegible word] and that too under the disguise of a kindness to the husband: yet he was torne in pieces (membratim, saith mine Author) limb by limb, by the people. In like manner Callippus having by corrupting the Soldiery slain Dion, in hopes of the Government of Syracusa, was himself slain with the same dagger, by the same Soldiers. And Cicero, of whom I spake before, though (for as much as ever I could meet with) he was hardly privy to the conspiracie against Cæsar, and therefore at most could be but accessory after the fact; yet had that hand that wrote,2 King. 21, 23. and that head that spoke in defence of his murder, strook off, and set over the Rostra where he had formerly justified so dangerous an Error. Neither is holy Writ barren of examples in this kind. The servants of Amon conspired against him and slew him, and all the people of the land slew all them that conspired against him. In like manner Zimri conspired against Elah King of Israel, and slew him, and having reigned seven days in his stead in Tirzah the people encamped against it and took it: But Zimri burnt the Kings house, and himself in it, to escape a greater mischief for the Treason he had wrought,1 King. 16, 20. for so the Text calls it. And rather then I shall want any thing that may prove the present purpose the Gentleman himself will afford me somewhat; for as to his example of Athaliah, it will be no hard matter to turn the point of it upon himself, in as much as the Text tells us, she had slain all the seed Royal of the house of Judah; and consequently it can be no injury to that place, if (besides what I have said before concerning it) I add this,2 King. 12, 1. that it was a judgment of God, and an act of retaliation of the people upon her, for those many murders and slaughters which she had exercised upon the posterity of the Kings of Judah For as Ovid saith,
— Neque enim lex justior ulla,
Quàm necis artifices arte punire suâ.
Plut. in Alex.Neither have the People been the only Executioners of Justice, in these cases; but even particular Princes have thought it a duty to them, and interest to themselves, to revenge the death of their Predecessors. So Alexander the Great, put them to cruel death, that had slain Darius, his Enemy: Cæsar,Idem in Pompeio. Suet. in Vitell. s. 10. Idem in Domit. s 14. Herodina. such as had a hand in the blood of Pompy: Vitellius, the Murderers of Galba: Domitian, Epaphroditus the Libertine of Nero, because he had but helped him (although in love) to dispatch himself: And Seversis, the Killers of Pertinax his Predecessor. The same did David to the Amalekite (as before:) And when Rechab and Banaah brought him the head of Ishboseth, he commanded his young men, and they slew them, and hung up their hands and feet, over the Pool in Hebron.2 Sam. 14, 12. So barbarous and abhorred an act hath this of Killing been, even in the eyes of the People; and a thing of so ill president to Princes themselves, to suffer such people to live, that though they may have secretly approved the Action, as gaining a Crown by it, yet they have rarely forgot to give the Actor the demerit of his Treason. But if after all this men will not take warning, but suffer themselves to be run into dangers, by every Botefeu and Incendiary, that thinks he cannot warm his hands, unless it be at a publique flame,v. Pluarch. in Eumene. I cannot tell what I should add more; for whom neither Religion nor danger can keep back, what can deter? Yet because some men are sooner led by interest then either of the other two, I hasten to his Third Question, which is,
3. Quest.Whether this act of killing, &c. is like to prove more advantagious, or noxious to the Commonwealth?
Concerning which, having in Answer to his First Question made it appear that his Highness is not a Tyrant either in Title, or Regiment; and in Answer to his Second, proved the unlawfulness of the Action; methinks I might well spare the labor of examining whether it be expedient to make him away? But because all his Propositions are grounded upon Suppositions, nay even this also he begins, If it be lawful, whether it be expedient; having disproved the former, there remains nothing, but that I consider the latter: And here, I need not ask the wearied Traveller, whether he would be at rest; or the weather-beaten Sea-man, what is the benefit of a Harbor? The case is the Commonwealths: How hath she been tossed to and fro upon the waves of Civil dissentions? how have her sons (like Rebecca’s Twins) strugled together within her, to the endangering their common mother? What breaches hath she received from the fury of the one, and the madness of t’ other? And now that this leaky Bottom hath made land, nay more, that that the waters are abated, and herself rested upon the mountains of Peace and Settlement; That her sons begin to acknowledge each other, and have beaten their swords into plow-shares, and their spears into pruning-hooks; what folly were it, nay what inexcusable madness, to engage her in new broils, and set those scars a bleeding again, which while they were wounds, were always thought (and so found) too great for any but the hand of God to close. And now because our Authors doctrine tends to little less, I would have every English-man examine our own Story, and tell me whether this Nation had not better have endured that too masculine spirit of King John then by that large effusion of blood in the Barons wars, subjected it last to the interloping of the Pope? Or whether they had not better plaid under that more then feminine easiness of Rich. 2. then by a continued war between the two Houses of York and Lancaster, sheathed that sword in one anothers bowels, which, had it been in no other hands, then of those that were slain, had been Army enough to have stretcht out its boughs unto the Ocean, and its branches unto the Rivers, and in a word, given Law to all Europe besides. But before I proceed farther in this point, ’tis requisite that I look back upon my Author. And here, the first thing considerable that I meet with, is that of the Lord Bacon, viz. The blessing of Issachar, and that of Judah falls not upon one people, to be Asses crouching under burthens, and to have the spirit of Lyons. Wherein the Gentleman is wise to conceal the Book, because he hath made a little too bold with his sense, which were easie enough to be understood, if he did not explain himself, that he intended no other Taxes, then such as are laid upon the people against their consents, and for which there is no Authority, but the will of the Imposor; and therefore he calls them properly burdens: But speaking of such as are conferred by consent, he instanceth in the Excises of the Low-Countries, and Subsidies of England; which, though they are the same as to the purse, as those that are levied by command, yet (saith he) they work diversly upon the courage:Bac. Advancement, l. 8. c. 3. And so concludes, that a people overlaid, and overcharged &c. are unfit for Empire, which must necessarily pull down the courage of the most warlike people, when they shall have nothing, be it never so dear to them, which they can call their own, but may be taken away whenever their Prince shall have a mind to it. And that our condition is not the same, will easily appear to any man that shall consider, that there is no Tax now on foot in the Nation, other then such as is confirmed by Authority of Parliament; and though possibly they may be greater then hath been usual, yet they are no other, then what the People, by their Representatives, have laid upon themselves; and such, that though they may be a little troublesom for the present, will in the end produce Peace, and Plenty. The next thing, which he doth but touch upon, is that of Oaths, &c. How many Oaths have we broken, &c. To which (though I never took any my self) yet I may safely give this Answer: That although Oaths are always (at least ought to be) taken in the sense of the Giver, and not of the Receiver,Grat de jur. &c. l. 2. c. 42. yet an Oath may cease of it self, two ways. 1. Where he to whom, or for whose good the Oath was given, refuseth it. 2. Where the quality doth cease, under which a man hath sworne to any; as if a Magistrate cease to be a Magistrate: Now if any man hath taken an Oath, which he conceiveth to be broken, if he cannot bring it under one of these heads, my advice to him is that he ask God forgiveness for what is past, and be more wary of such solemn engagements for the time to come. And so, because our Author makes no more of it himself, I have no reason to follow it further. The next thing he enquires is, What have we of the Nobility, but the name, the Luxury, and the Vices? Which I believe our Author set purposely down, because he would be sure to have somewhat in his Pamphlet that could not be disproved: And therefore I shall say no more to it, then what we have in an old Poet of our own, who calculates the time, since when they first fell in their esteem,
Ex quo Nobilitas servilia cœpit amare,
Nobilitas cœpit cum servis degenerare:
Adv: 300.Onely wish that they may disprove that Antithesis of the Lord Bacon, Nobility seldom springs from Vertue, Vertue more seldom from Nobility; And so I leave it. In the next place, he saith An unlimited power is not to be trusted in the hands of one Man, &c. Which though I shall not oppose it, yet I would fain know wherein this unlimited power concerns his Highness, or if so, wherein it consists: for, he hath not hitherto pretended to more then the Laws give him, and therefore we should be as charitable, as those Laws, who never presume a wrong, unless it be sufficiently proved: And so I cannot tell what it should be he drives at,Tac. Anal. 1. p. 220. except he thinks an unlimited power to consist in a negative voice, without which let a Princes Dominions be never so great, he is but like the Roman Priapus, who though he were God of the Gardens, could not keep a Crow from muting upon his head: Or that picture which the Dutch devised for one of our own Kings, a sword by his side, but locked in with a pad-lock. But if this be not the thing, but he is angry that the Power is put again into the hands of one, Tacitus will tell us, it was the onely way that settled Rome.[Editor: illegible word] l. 1. c. 1. Neque aliud discordantis Reipub. remedium fuisse. quàm ut ab uno regeretur: There could be no other cure found for the divisions of the Commonwealth, then that the whole power should be put into the hands of one: And nothing impertinent to this purpose is that of Agamemnon in Homer
Ου[Editor: illegible Greek words]
Where many rule, no good can spring;
Let be one Sovereign Lord, one King
In the next place, he pretends to answer two Objections, in the first whereof, he would take off from the unlawfulness of the action of killing his Highness privately (as he calls it) which is in plain English basely and treacherously. Concerning which, because I have largely spoken to it in answer to his second Question, I shall only add what old Gualfridus saith of Rich. 1. slain by an Arcubalist
——Trajecit, tectus, apertum;
Providus, incautum: miles munitus, inermem;
Et proprium Regem——
The second (which he would seem to answer but doth not) is the fear of what may succeed, if his Highness were removed, which being little different from the question, I shall briefly run it over, and having given some instances how fatal the change of States hath generally been, I shall wind up the whole.
First then he saith, We suffer a certain misery for fear of a contingent one, and let the disease kill us, because there is danger in the cure. To which I answer, that if himself were judge, would not he think that Physitian mad, that should advise him to cut off his head, because it akes? Or those Marriners out of their wits, that because they are onely afraid of a storm, shall run their Vessel upon a Rock, out of the pretence of making the more haste to shore? The case of England is the same: We have been long sick, and our disease was well nigh grown to a habit, and now that we are gotten again upon our legs, and able to walk by the help of a staff, what desperate confidence were it, to throw away that supporter, onely because our old Nurse tells us we are able to go by our selves. How much better were it that we rested till we had recovered some more strength, then upon the vain and idle surmises of an incertain cure, expose our selves to a certain relapse? for little better can be looked for, from those desperate conclusions, which like the applying hot bricks to the soles of the feet, though it may be accident divert the disease, yet experience tells us, doth but settle the humor, in some other place, which in a short time becomes a more incurable Gangrene. And therefore I pitty him that shall think these prescriptions fit to be followed, and may safely conclude he is umhappily sick, as being more endangered by his Physitian, then his disease.
But who are they to whom he applies this discourse? or what are the men that must be the executioners of this villany? he thinks the Souldiery the fittest persons, and therefore he would engage them, and if there be any discontents amongst them, boil up those ill humors into a mutiny, if not a rebellion. But I hope they see through his design, and beleeve, that though he pretends himself to have been one of them, ’tis but a design to kill two Birds with one stone: for if they should venture upon such an action, and fail in it, they ruine themselves, and he hath his end that way: and if they go through with it, he is sure they will fall together by the ears amongst themselves; or if that fail, contract an odium from the people, and blot out the memory of their former deserts by the murder of their General, to whom, besides the duty they owe him as their Prince, they have added (Sacramentum militare) the faith of a Souldier; and so he hath his end this way also: But I hope they both know this, and have also learnt, that if it were Gods Cause, as the Gentleman would make it little less, yet it must not be fought with the Devils weapons.
Non tali Auxilio, non defensoribus istis
In a word, there is a maxime in Morality, That bonum oritur ex integris, and in Christianity, That we must not do evil that good may come of it.
In the next place he strikes upon a string that he thinks will make the best musick; and yet, but once, least it might be thought to be done of design. Utinam te potius Carole retinuissemus, quàm hunc habuissemus, &c. To which I give this short answer, that there are two Acts of Parliament in the case, the one in disowning his Title, the other in setling the Government upon his Highness by the name of the Lord Protector of the Commonwealth of England, Scotland and Ireland &c. And therefore it behoves no man, to be wiser then the Laws of his Country, nay rather, so far to submit to them, that he follow the great wheel of the State, referring nothing to his own brain, which must needs be excentrick and irregular. An example of this we have in Th. Howard Earl of Surrey, and eldest Son to the Duke of Norfolk, who being taken prisoner at Bosworth-field, and being demanded by Hen. 7. why he would bear Arms for a Tyrant, he answered, He was my King, and if the Parlamentary Authority shall set the Crown upon a stock, I will fight to defend that stock, &c.
Lastly, he concludes with the business of Sindercomb; and though in the beginning of his Pamphlet, he is one of those of whom Domitian complains, that will never beleeve there is a Treason unless the Prince be killed, and therefore inquires whether it were a Plot of Sindercomb, against his Highness, or of his Highness against Sindercomb: yet here his study hath got him a stomack, he swallows it bones and all; he sings him an Epinicion (if I may give that name to prose:) and would do more for him then the Pope did for the Jacobine, or Raviliac (the Assassinats of Hen. 3. and Hen. 4. of France) canonize a Traitor for a Saint. But the Rat is discovered by his squeaking; We extoll (saith he) their constancy whom neither bribes nor terrors could make betray their friends; yet tis more then probable that some of them began to suspect it, or else they had never provided him a pill, to secure him against telling of tales. But I hope every man will take example by him, and beleeve there is another way to preserve a mans memory then by firing Diana’s Temple, and that there is as short a cut to Heaven out of a Bed, as from a Gibbet; for, he the Treason what it will, we shall rarely find, that Traytors have gone to their graves in peace; and therefore, I may not improperly use that of Juvenal,Sat. 10. though wrote by him in another sense
Ad generum Cereris sixe cæàe aut sanguine pauci
for, either they receive their reward where they have attempted the action, or met with it from them, that set them on work,Plut. in Rom. most men being of Antigonus’s mind, who would say, he loved the Treason, but hated the Traytor: And here,Id. in emmens. if it be requisite to urge any thing further, to confirm a truth so generally received, amongst those multitudes of examples, take this one for all,Lib. 1. c. 1. out of Florus: Where Tarpeia having betraied the Capitol to the Sabins, upon contract, to receive for reward, what they carried on their left hands (intending no doubt their Bracelets;) they both to keep their promise, and withal not to suffer such an exemplary Treason to escape unpunished, threw her in their Bucklers to boot, wherewith being overwhelmed, she received the reward of her treachery. And so I leave it, and come to speak to the disadvantages that the alterations of Government have brought along with them.
Machiavel, whom the Gentleman hath quoted so often (as thinking the very name scandal enough to the people) calls that of Tacitus a golden sentence,Upon Livy, l. 3. c. 6. where he saith, that men are to reverence things past, and to submit to what is present: and should wish for good Princes, but whatsoever they are endure them: and verely who doth otherwise ruins both himself and Country. The Prints of this are every where, but I shall insist onely upon the Roman State. When Lepidus went about to rescinde the Acts of Sylla, Florus saith thus of it, That it was deservedly designed, if it could have been done without the greater damage of the Commonwealth: And a little further,Flo. l. 3. c. [Editor: illegible word] Expediebat ergo, quasi ægræ, sauciæq; Reipub. requiesceve quomadocunque ut vulnera curatione ipsa rescinderentur It was expedient (saith he) for the sick, and wounded Commonwealth to take some rest at any hand, least the soars should be opened and bleed in the cure.Annal. 12. And this is that which Tacitus drives at, when he bids us bear with the dispositions of Kings; for saith he, Neq; usui crebras esse mutationes, it is not for the profit of the Commonwealth that there should be often changes: For as Cæsar said, Kingdoms never change without great combustions, and States suffer worse mischiefs, by not enduring even insolent Princes. The Commonwealth of Rome found it true enough after his death: Examine but the Triumvirate, and you shall find every one set up for himself: Lepidus covetous of wealth,Id. Flo l. 4. c. 5. the hope of which stood upon troubling the State: Anthony to be revenged on them that had proclaimed him Traytor: And Oct. Cæsar for the death of his adoptive Father, upon Brutus and Cassius: Then again came up the proscriptions of Sylla, the free sword did what it pleased, and was more familiar with entrails, then the Aruspices: In a word, it mowed down no less then 140 Senators, nothing but rapine, and slaughter bestrid the streets, till Oct. Cæsar by out-witting one, and beating the other, once more settled the Empire: But then again, when they had gotten the knack of murdering their Emperors, four of which successively were slain, viz Nero, Galba, Otho, Vitellius; the second, and last by the Army; the first, and third by themselves, to prevent worse usage. He that shall peruse the four Books of Tacitus his History, shall find it nothing inferior to that Character, which he gives of it in the beginning; Opus, plenum magnis casibus, atrox præliis,Tac. Hist. l. 1. c. 2. discors seditionibus, ipsa etiam pace sævum; A Work (saith he) containing sundry changes, bloody Battels, violent Mutinies, Peace full of cruelty, and peril: Four Emperors slain with the sword; Civil Wars three; foreign, more, and oft both, &c. Histories are full of examples to this purpose, and would rather require a volume then a few sheets, but I shall onely apply this last, and conclude.
When Alexander the Great had a purpose to build a City to his glory, Dimocrates the Architect came to him, and shewed him how it might be built upon Mount Athos; which place, besides that it would be strong, he could so order, that the City should be made in form of a Man, which would be a wonder worthy his greatness; whereupon being asked how the Inhabitants should live, he answered, he had not advised of that point yet: And truly to me it seems that the Gentlemans brain, was big with some such Chimera, or else it could never have come into his head, to have advised the destroying one Government, before he had thought upon some other frame, to set up in the room of it: For supposing the Gentleman had his wish, and that his Highness were carried away in some popular combustion, or by a private hand, which would work the same effect, (which God forbid:) it could not but rationally be expected, that we should onely then begin to know what it were to suffer; for of all Tyrannies, the fury and madness of the people is the greatest: Then, when too late,Bodinus de Reg. l. 2. we should have every man complain, that if he were chastised before with rods, he is now lashed with Scorpions, and experimentally find, that the little finger of the people, would be thicker then his Highness’s loyns: Excellent to this purpose, is the Philosophers story of the Ass, who being laden with Salt, and passing through a River, casually stumbled in it, and perceiving that by that accident the salt melted, and his burden became lighter, he could never after come by any water, but he would be lying down in it; till his Master perceiving it, laded him with Wooll, and then, when too late, the poor Ass began to repent himself of his trying Conclusions. Besides, there is a great advantage we recieve, both by not changing our Governors, and by not suffering the Government, when vacant, to run into too many Families; the contrary of which, hath been the great impoverishing of elective Kingdoms: And this I shall deliver in the same Fable that Æsop did to the Samians upon the like occasion. There was a Fox, saith he, swiming over a River, but the stream being too strong for him, he was beaten into a bush, where he was horribly infested with Flies: it happened the Hedge-hog came by, and pittying his condition, profered him his service to beat them off: to whom the Fox; No Brother, let them alone, for their bellies being full, they are quiet, and do not trouble me, but if you shall beat off these, I shall have others come in their room, who will take all that blood which these have left: The Moral is good, and prevaild so with the Samians that they continued their Governor; and weighed so much with Tiberius, that he seldom removed his Deputies of Provinces, there being (as Josephus relates) only two (viz. Cratus and Pilate) in Judæa for twenty years together. For as Statius saith, Non parcit populis Regnum breve—For not knowing how long, or little they may continue, it cannot be expected, but that they will make hay, whilst the sun shines. And as to the second, of the inconvenience of letting the Government run into too many Families, I need go no further for instance then the Empire of Germany, which by this means hath had such Cantons lopt from it by the sons of Emperors, as Bavaria, Saxony, the Palatinate, and others, that (whatever it is now) it had ere this time crumbled into dirt, had not Charls the Fifth thought upon that policie of Rex Romanorum, whereby, it hath been not only kept to this day, in the Austrian Family, but divers of those Territories are again brought into the Antient channel, from whence, to the great endangering of the Empire, they had been formerly purloined.
Lastly, to winde up all, I have but a word, and that is to the Discontent, upon whom this kind of doctrine hath the same effect, as poison upon cholerick constitutions; it enters easiest, and works fastest: And therefore ’tis probable they were the persons principally intended by this Pamphlet; and the rather, in as much as they look upon his Highness as a person come in by Conquest; and therefore say, That all power won by the sword, may be lost by the sword. To which I answer, That admitting that, which his Highness never owned, or pretended to, yet even upon that score it stands most with their interests, to be quiet, and submit to the Government: And therefore I will give you the opinion of Seneca, upon the very same case:
Mer. Fur.Si aterna semper odia mortales agant,
Nec cœptus unquam cedat ex animis furor;
Arma felix teneat, Infelix paret.
And having in the following Verses reckoned up the miseries and inconveniences of a War, he adds,
Pacem reduci velle, victori expedis;
Victo necesse est. ———
And so having brought my discourse down to particular interests, I think I cannot break off in a better place.