Monday, April 18, 1659.
I came late, and found the debate, that there should be no
general councils without doors, without license, (fn. 1) and the ge
neral sense of the House that way inclined. Sir Robert Pye
had moved it; and it was ordered before that none should
go out. (fn. 2)
Lord Falkland. You have been a long time talking of
three estates. There is a fourth which, if not well looked to,
will turn us all out of doors. They have not only made resolutions, but have had the impudence to print them. (fn. 3) I am
against their meetings, and would have them suppressed.
The House was very full.
Sir John Lenthall moved, and it was ordered that letters
be brought in to the Speaker's chair.
Captain Baynes. It is not, judicially, before us that there
is an army. Your army is a main ingredient in your government. Lose that, and you lose all. Which one estate soever
have that, destroys the other two. I would have it examined,
by whose authority this general council came together. I
doubt it was by some that, seeing they cannot serve their turns,
cry out against them. It is fit we should have our share.
Sir Arthur Haslerigge cried, Well moved. I was in the
army, an officer, fourteen years. Now, I am none. I know
the grounds of this motion, and go not precipitately to this
vote. The late Protector was general for life. I question,
if any officer have a legal commission. It may be, the two
other estates are courting them. I would have you also to
court them, by providing them pay. Before you pass any
vote, that implies to make his Highness general, consider
whether you will have one general, or several persons. Go
upon that which will draw the affections of the army after
Mr. Swinfen. The scope of what that gentleman discourses
is, that he is against the Protector's being general. His argument is also against your being general. I perceive, by him,
the army are divided about who shall be general, before you
have determined any thing about it. For that very reason I
am against these general meetings. I hope there will be no
negative upon this, that no council, while you sit, shall sit
without your leave.
They are no military council. This is a council directly
contrary from a council of war. It is not known to the laws
of war, nor to the laws of the nation. The title of the council
runs to meet the title of the Parliament of the Commonwealth
of England, Scotland, and Ireland. This will rather be a
dishonour to your votes. I see no need of it. The danger is
a great deal. It fills the people with fear. People talk,
what will become of the Parliament ? It weakens the reputation of the Parliament. After the meeting of the officers,
the next may be that of the common soldiers. (fn. 4) Every member has his proper office in political as well as natural bodies.
They meet to serve one or other. It is fit you should know
them. They are both unnecessary and dangerous.
Mr. Reynolds. I never had any hand in councils without
doors. I never went along with them. I abhor the thought
of it. I am also against all other councils and meetings, such
as were to constitute a Parliament. I would have the grounds
of this general council examined. You are upon a tender
point, and it must be well handled. When your army was at
Saffron Waldon, drawing up hither, I was for tenderness then,
and to qualify them with six weeks' pay. They wanted that
pay, and you know how your vote was disobeyed. Take heed
you take not the thorn out of another's foot, and put it in
your own wholly. Let us not disoblige. You dismissed the
Quakers (fn. 5) not pleased.
There is nothing disorderly in their debate, nor against this
House. I hope they are your favourites.
In matters of this danger or difficulty, I hope you will not
go alone, but take in the other House. Appoint a Committee to carry on a conference with the other House. If it had
been so dangerous as is represented, surely we should have
heard from the other House; they being persons of integrity,
and chosen to that purpose.
When the Cavaliers swarm, it is not fit either to disperse,
or discontent your army. Ten Cavaliers do you more harm
here than forty in the country.
If you pass it, so as to look too fully upon the army, and
not at other meetings too, I doubt I shall give my negative to
this. If you pass this vote, pass it as generally as you can,
and let the other House either begin, or follow you.
Mr. Serjeant MaynÀrd. I am sorry to see wise men so
tender in this point. You must not do so much as a mouse.
I would have plain English spoken. You give no cause of
jealousy. As to the point of pay, you go as fast on as such
councils can. I shall not make any inference from those remonstrances. Pluck the wicked out of their places. It comes
at last to you. Lord have mercy upon us, if we cannot speak
to our army, to go to their stations and their charges, but we
must discontent and disoblige them !
If your army be an "ingredient in your government," I
hope he (fn. 6) meant better than he spoke; for, if so, they sit
among us. It was told you there were but seven officers, I
was there when there were eleven, and Mr. Peters (fn. 7) to boot.
What work were they doing ? Surely something ? Why
should not they go into the country to look to the Cavaliers ?
It is said there is a council among us. I cannot believe it,
that we do go along with this council without doors.
Mr. Hungerford. You ought not to suffer any without
doors to make a descant upon your resolutions. I am for
your declaration, and withal to vote that all the persons of
the other House that were at that general council, shall be
disabled from sitting in the other House this Parliament. I
wish you had always done so. Much of your mischief had
been prevented, that has come upon you. I wondered to see
this remonstrance abroad. (fn. 8)
Mr. Scot. Either there is nothing in it, or more in it than
we know: otherwise the gentleman that would have given us
an account of their debate would not have been taken down.
It is no secret, no new thing, the meeting of the officers.
Is not this to expose your army to assassination, all England over. Disperse them, and you will keep the Cavaliers
It can never be policy to distrust those you are obliged to
trust. I profess I was no more knowing of what was done to
the House in 48. It is a paracelsian (fn. 9) remedy, that may kill
as well as cure, I was never at Wallingford House (fn. 10) nor
Whitehall since you sat, and why shall I go ?
A Declaration was passed to make the army traitors. Some
few of us were against it, and moved how will you bring them
to justice unless you will raise another army. You were fain
to eat that vote next day.
Confidence is better, in that case, than jealousy. It was
Alexander's case. A potion was offered to him, and a letter.
He durst not refuse the potion, but gave the physician the
letter. (fn. 11) So was his confidence better than his jealousy.
There was another instance of a troop that charged without
their regiment. They were bid not to be too hasty.
The Protector did not complain of any danger in the petition, when he sent the letter and the remonstrance. The
printed paper (fn. 12) says, he read it with all candour.
There is a "good old cause." (fn. 13) If their meetings be, to
manage that, I shall not be against them; while their counsels are in subordination to you.
The soldiers sell their arrears at the same rate as debentures.
You deal with them as you do with the Quakers. Because
of them, and because of these meetings, you must strengthen
the hands of the single person.
I would have a Committee to confer with the other House.
Mr. Steward. I hope it will not be to your prejudice, to
prevent their meeting, but for your and their service. Now
they have represented their grievances, it must be considered
what they meet for. It will concern you.
1. In your honour. The people rumour, as if they were a
rod over your heads. Those are the people's apprehensions.
2. In your safety. It was said, your army was a balance.
It is vain to endeavour to balance the other two estates. If a
fourth estate, it is no balance at all.
3. For your service. That they may be better in their
stations. Some of these are a hundred miles off. They may
be more serviceable in suppressing the enemy in their own
countries. I would have you transact with the other House
in this; but not by way of a Committee. Pass this Declaration, and send it there for their concurrence.
Mr. Chaloner. The Protector is to govern by your advice. We have heard nothing of it. I hear commissions are
granted. There is no such danger. It was said, when Colonel Bennet went out, (fn. 14) he went to fetch in the army.
Sir Arthur Haslerigge. When I have spoken my mind, I
care not what becomes of me. This question is not for your
service at this time. I doubt here is more in the bottom of
it than appearances. I wish it may tend to the peace of the
It was cried, he had spoke.
I am sorry to see the spirit of this House so freward, as not
to have patience to hear men speak. God will not bless it.
There is great struggling without doors where the militia
shall be. We hear there are endeavours to grant new commissions. How comes it, that you hear not of it ? We go
in the dark, and if we go suddenly about it, it may be a
bloody vote. I will manifest it to the world, that I have no
thing but the public good in my eye. If you be forewarned
of it, and do not prevent it, I am discharged.
Let us take in the other House in this great business, lest
you pass a vote that may destroy posterity. If ill consequences come, upon a sudden vote, let it not solely proceed
from you, lest you bear the blame of all. I abhor all cabals
without doors. I am not, nor ever was, of them. Let us
have a conference with the other House, and some members
of the army, to understand the bottom of this. I hear this
general. Council was called by his Highness.
Colonel Terrill. I have looked upon all transactions since
48, as upon a military power. I am as much against the imposing upon you, as any man; but I fear the like consequences as former votes of this kind have had. What power
have we to enforce our votes ? Be very wary of proceeding
suddenly. Many of the other House are concerned, that
know more than we. It does not appear that the army are
under any command. I commend their submission. It is a
loose army. They cannot be called to any account, as soldiers; but only as private persons. The great end of their
meeting is but to choose their masters. I have no such fears
as is moved. Therefore the Protector had power to name his
successor, but not to name the general. I would have a consultation with the other House by a Committee. Your army is
a loose army.
Colonel Birch. All the arguments against it make me for
it. I would not have it a bloody vote, and therefore would
have it pass. You hear what their discourse is; who shall
be their general, or whether they be under any command ?
Ill consequences will follow, if unobviated. They cannot but
be bloody. That of the army's arrears; I wonder, when
I moved it two or three times on Saturday, that the arrears
might be included in your vote, those that were so much
against it then, are now for it.
Such a paper I have in my hand as never was known. A
paper signed by the foot soldiers of Pride's regiment, above
three hundred. (fn. 15) Their meeting will be next.
Here are several officers. If they disliked this declaration,
they would speak against it; but I hear none.
I desire that you would put it to the question. The paper
was a printed petition directed to his Excellency the Lord
Fleetwood, and signed by all the foot soldiers, &c. It was
never done before: a very ill precedent. If officers begin, soldiers follow.
Mr. Annesley. There is no resentment in his Highness's
letter, of the remonstrance, nor of their meeting. If they
had not been called by him, why did not he take notice of it ?
This should receive our tenderness. Also, I Would have
your vote pass by authority. Let nothing go single. Have
the concurrence of the three estates in it.
If you restrain public meetings, you must also private,
wherein were more danger. If you send them into the
country, before you settle where the chief command shall be,
this may inflame them in the country, and infuse those principles that are sown abroad.
Let us not part with our share of the militia. The militia
is going after the purse. (fn. 16) Refer it to a Committee presently to
prepare a question that may save your share in the militia;
that your claim may appear, and no implication be, that you
intend to give it to another.
The question was put in the affirmative, that during the
sitting of the Parliament, there shall be no general council
or meeting of the officers of the army, without the direction,
leave, and authority of his Highness the Lord Protector, and
both Houses of Parliament.
Sir Henry Vane then stood up.
Mr. Lobb standing up, he gave him way. He made a
great deal of stuff against the question, and compared sending
them to their stations with sending the Quakers home. It
was an ill answer to their petition.
Colonel Allured. I cannot in conscience be silent. Will
you put away your friends, and hug your enemies ? First,
purge your own House of Cavaliers.
Mr. Jenkinson and others moved to name them, or else give
satisfaction to the House.
Colonel Allured. I will name them, if you command me. (fn. 17)
Colonel Eyre and Mr. Trevor moved not to interfere at this
time with the debate, but, according to the ancient orders of
the House, to put it off till this debate was over, and let the
expression be entered, and that gentleman will be concerned
to name them in a fitter season. So it was waved.
Colonel Allured went on with his motion, and concluded for
Lieutenant-general Ludlow. I move, not to enrage your
friends, and encourage your enemies. Many of the officers
are solicitous about that purchase of the forests for their
arrears. (fn. 18)
Sir Henry Vane. Those that know the danger better than
I, haply may have more reason to press on this vote. This,
it may be, is considered on before. I know nothing of it, and
therefore must take measure by what is before me.
I am as much against councils without doors as any man.
This council has been owned by his Highness. It is said,
abroad, his Highness called them. If this general council
had raised the single person to be their general, it had been, I
doubt, too late for you to debate it here. Before you have
determined any thing of the militia, for you to engage in such
a vote, I know not what may be the consequence.
If the truth of the matter-of-fact were as represented, you
would not be so forward in this vote. I heard it abroad, and
from one in the Council Chamber, I am not able to name the
person, that the occasion of calling together this council, was
by his Highness, on purpose to try the officers if they would
take commissions from him, exclusive of the Parliament.
Mr. Trevor and Mr. Bodurda moved that Sir Henry Vane
explain those last words, of what he says he heard in the
Council Chamber. To amuse the House at the end of a
debate, with a report such as this !
Sir Arthur Haslerigge and Lord Lambert moved to ascertain the words before an order for an explanation. They had
heard that Commissions have been offered to several officers.
Colonel Okey instanced in one Colonel (Briscoe) who told
him that commissions were provided for him and his regiment.
Upon this the debate was waved. I question whether it
will come on again.
Lord Lambert. This is a pitiful point. If so, I may say,
what, disperse your friends !
He made a long motion against the question, to the same
purpose that has been said.
Leave was given to Sir William D'Oyly and Sir Walter
Earle to go out.
Mr. Solicitor-general. It is confessed there is danger if
they had agreed who should be general. Certainly he (fn. 19) would
not have told you this news, unless on good grounds. He
says his Highness called them. I hear they were not called
What can be the end of these meetings ? If you suffer
this, none knows what may come of it. You know what
adjutators (fn. 20) came to. They were hard to be suppressed. We
know not what may be at the bottom of these councils.
If we cannot be obeyed in this, we sit to very little purpose. Let us give up the buckler.
I do not imagine but that they will obey. It is the greatest jealousy and reflection that may lie upon them. I cannot
believe it. Such meetings as those have not been these
eleven years. Surely such an extraordinary meeting must
have an extraordinary end.
Mr. Godfrey. I am for the question, but not for the
putting it now. (He instanced the case when the Israelites
got Jeroboam to head them).
Tumultuous meetings and petitioning I am against. They
are but colourable confusions at best. I hope this is not
come to that height. When you have passed this vote, you
can neither, in honour nor safety to yourself and the nation,
recede from it.
I fear, in the consequence, it will prove an allowance
of such meetings for the future. To obviate the mischief
that may come upon Parliament hereafter, either adjourn the
debate till to-morrow, or appoint a Committee.
Sir Thomas Wroth. Let us do like wise men, and make
no votes but what we shall be able to give a reason for.
I am such a fool that I cannot give a reason for it.
The question was put, that this question be now put.
Mr. Speaker declared for the Yeas.
Mr. — (fn. 21) declared for the Noes.
The Noes went out.
Noes 87. Mr. Chaloner and Mr. Neville, Tellers.
Yeas 163. Mr. Boscawen and Colonel Rossiter, Tellers.
The main question was put and resolved. (fn. 22)
But, before the question was put,
Mr. Bodurda moved, that all the members might be
They came down accordingly. Colonel Allured excepted,
for the Noes; but he waved, upon the advice of Sir Arthur
Haslerigge, and others.
Mr. Bodurda. I move that you refer it to his Highness
to put this vote in execution.
Mr. Swinfen. I move that you put the question, that
none be capable of command in the army, until they have
subscribed not to give any disturbance to the free meeting
and sitting of Parliament.
Mr. Annesley seconded it.
Mr. Jenkinson. I am not against this vote; for it will
appear upon your books, that these were the grounds of
your former vote, lest you fear force upon you.
Mr. Stephens. For that very reason I am for the question.
It is an undoubted breach of the privileges of Parliament
for any councils whatsoever to meet, sitting the Parliament.
Colonel Allured. Some members have not right to sit
here. I hope you will not restrain them from interrupting
Mr. Gerrard. It is not for any soldier to interrupt any
member here, whether he have right or no. It must be the
Parliament that must judge of that. I wish he would name
Mr. Turner. My reason why I was for this question was,
lest we be interrupted. It is the talk all over that we shall
not be long lived, and that Thursday next was designed
Mr. Godfrey. I fear your vote amounts to a present
cashiering of them, by those words "shall not subscribe;"
add those words "shall refuse to subscribe."
Colonel Clark. You have no reason for this jealousy.
That is the rage of a man. This diffidence of your friends
ought to be avoided. Jealousy stirs up jealousy. I had
rather have you suspect the Cavaliers. You must lean upon
your army for the great part of your safety. A little spark
may kindle a great flame. We have known what has become
of small beginnings. Leave out the word "Navies."
Lord Falkland. If they mean us well, they will not
disobey this. If they mean us ill, it is more than time we
should know it.
The way to keep the Cavaliers out, is to— (fn. 23) our
friends. The army have done well, it is true; but we cannot
but remember they have done ill; pulled us twice (fn. 24) out by
Mr. Chaloner. I move against the word "Navies."
They are at sea and seldom come to land, but with sticks.
Make your vote also, that they shall not obey the Chief
Magistrate in giving any disturbances.
Mr. Scot. I have not confidence to give my vote without my reason; but it is not for your service to pass this
Resolved, that no person shall have or continue in any
command or trust, in any of the armies or navies of England,
Scotland, or Ireland, or any of the dominions or territories
thereto belonging, who shall refuse to subscribe, that he will
not disturb nor interrupt the free meetings in Parliament,
of any of the members of either House of Parliament, or
their freedom in their debates and councils.
Mr. Trevor. I move that his Highness be advised and
desired to acquaint the officers with your vote, and that they
would repair to their commands. (fn. 25)
Colonel Birch. I move for a Declaration to be speedily
brought in, to send the Cavaliers twenty miles from London.
Mr. Turner. The first thing you do, take care to pay the
soldiers their arrears.
Captain Clayton. Take off the retrenchment of the pay of
the common soldiers, which was taken off three years since.
Lord Falkland. I move that Colonel Allured name the
persons, &c. (fn. 26)
Mr. Bodurda. I move that Mr. Stephens, who moved
this first, may carry these votes to the other House for their
Resolved, that the concurrence of the other House be
desired to these votes; and that Mr. John Stephens do carry
the same to the other House for their concurrence. (fn. 27)
Mr. Trevor. I move that you do justice to the army, by
taking speedy course for the arrears of the army, and providing something for their present subsistence.
Mr. Scot. I move that your Speaker forbear the Chair;
and let nothing intervene, if you intend to have any fruits of
your Grand Committee.
Resolved, that this House will take into consideration,
to-morrow morning, how the arrears of the armies and navies
may be speedily satisfied.
Mr. Hewley. It is said we have disappointed our friends,
and encouraged our enemies.
I rise to second that motion, that a Committee be ap
pointed to prepare a Declaration to require all the Cavaliers to
go twenty miles out of town.
Colonel Clark. I would not have the army and the
Cavaliers linked together. I am for the question; but put it
off two or three days.
It is time to put a stop to the Cavaliers. Sir John
Carter, was shot in the shoulder last night by a crew of
them. (fn. 28) This is like kissing one's mouth, and biting off the
The House being informed that divers that have been
in arms against the Parliament, and other dangerous persons, have resorted of late to the City of London and parts
Resolved, that it be referred to a Committee, to propose
some effectual way how his Highness, the Parliament, and
the nation, may be secured against any attempt from them.
viz. Colonel Birch and twenty-eight more, (fn. 29) or any three
of them, to meet this afternoon in the Speaker's Chamber,
Resolved, that it be referred to Mr. Serjeant Maynard,
Mr. Attorney-general, and Mr. Solicitor-general, to prepare
and bring in a Bill for the indemnifying of such persons
as have served the Commonwealth.
The House sat till almost five o'clock: so that no Committees sat, save that in the Speaker's Chamber, to prepare a
Declaration against the Cavaliers staying in town.
The Committee for lame soldiers met. Lord Fairfax,
T. B., and others, and adjourned till Wednesday, at three.