Tuesday, March 3.
[The Arguments delivered by Mr Offtey, in Mr Fitton's business. N. B. Most of the arguments the Sollicitor had formerly
used at the Lords Bar, Offley delivered as his own, which made
the Sollicitor go out of the House.]
Granger acknowledged, That he had counterfeited the
Deed, and he revealed it afterwards, being troubled in
conscience. [See p. 91.]
Whether the sentence be with the Law of England ?
Fitton should be fined and imprisoned, till he bring out
the libeller, and on good behaviour during life?
Whether the Lords, as a House of Lords, without
Writ of Error, can originally so proceed?
In statutis de scandalis magnatum, not cognizable by the
Lords; punishable elsewhere.—Where the common law
does remedy, people are not to run to the House of
Lords; where ordinary remedies fail only. Placit. Parliam, sol. 33. the Bishop of Winchester demurs to the Jurisdiction. Coke fol. 2. Jurisdiction of Courts. Both
Houses sat together in Henry IIId. and Edward IIId's
time; but afterwards, at the instance of the Commons,
they parted, and then, by consent, the Lords had Jurisdiction; but by the multiplying of trivial cases it
was laid aside, 5 Richard II. 13 Row. N. 10. It seems
to the Lords not a parliamentary petition, but to be
referred to the common law. Knowle's case a forcible
entry. General supersedeas for Privilege of Parliament,
not, but in particular cases; Privilege of Parliament
would otherwise silence all law.
Now the Lords have made an order to retain or reject
any cause whatsoever without limit.
The Judges would have passed the same sentence, if
brought before them, by the statute de scandalis magnatum,
if found guilty. He is now neither judged per judicium
parum suorum, nor secundum leges Angliæ—It is against
Magna Charta, there being no tryal by the neighbourhood, per vicinetum.
The claim of being tryed by law has from time to
time been renewed, besides Magna Charta.
This being received, all cases by petition will be received there—Says not, they will have the same fate—
The Lords, by this means, will be both Judges and accusers— 15 Edward III. one error of the Lords proceedings was, the matter came not originally before
them—It was in a case of banishment—He has known
a Jury returned de vicineto de Whitehall; but never "of
Lords Spiritual and Temporal."
The Peers have no challenge amongst themselves, so
Fitton has none—Fitton has no appeal, but error in the
Lords, which, it is to be presumed, they will not acknowlege.
We have but one law both above and below stairs—
If there was law for him below stairs, there is above;
and why then should the Lords proceed by way of petition?—In Lord Lincoln's case, the Parl ament sitting,
he had his action of Scandalum Magnatum, and recovered
damages—He might sure, as well as Lord Gerrard,
have brought it into Parliament.
Precedent seemingly to favour the Lords.
John Cavendish, fishmonger, complained against William de la Pole; William de la Pole proved he had paid
Cavendish for his fish, and moved for justice against him,
and Cavendish was fined for scandalizing the Lord.
Scandals in Parliament, and Scandals out of Parliament, very different—All reasonings in Parliament, not
enquirable by law, nor subject to common Juries—
Stroude's case is a general case—Sir Henry Yelverton, for
speeches uttered against the Duke of Buckingham, was
fined; but our question quite another case—One precedent in the negative is worth three in the affirmative.
Mr Swynfin (now of the House) in 1645, upon complaint of Lord Denbigh, of words that fell from him
against that Lord, demurred against the Jurisdiction of
the Lords—The Jurisdiction of the Star Chamber is now
transformed into the House of Lords; but in somewhat a nobler way—Matters concerning Peerage are
determinable in the House of Lords, and they judge all
superiorities in Parliament and Council—As 1 Car.
betwixt the Earls of Oxford and Lindsey, about the Lord
Great Chamberlain's place, and the 30th of June, 14 of
Eliz.—Should every private case of every Peer be
brought into the House of Lords, it would set up, what
the law detests, arbitrary government.
Empson and Dudley did not proceed by a half face of
Justice; but summoned persons, and committed them,
without any legal proceedings by way of Indictment.
The court to die, and yet the contempt to last longer
than their Lordships last—Upon prorogation the parties
are usually discharged—When the court ceases, usually
the punishment for contempt does so.
Pritchard, and Lord Vaughan's case.
Fitton ought to have been released upon the first prorogation.
By this way of proceeding one court rides on the back
[The Debate was adjourned till Tuesday the 10th.]
Wednesday, March 4.
[Debate resumed concerning the insolent Carriage, and Abuses committed by several persons, in interrupting and disturbing
of Ministers in their Churches, and holding Meetings of their
Sir Edm. Wyndbam.] Moves that the Act for the Militia be taken into consideration, to enforce these assembling people, of all sorts and sects, to be quiet; and that
the Deputy Lieutenants may be purged, many being
remiss in their duty, and others favourers of this sort of
Mr Seymour.] The strictness of the institution of the
Spanish Inquisition, one of the greatest causes of the decay of that Monarchy—Mr Hobbes says, That when
reason is against a man, a man is against reason— Why
should we proceed in a way, that answers not our end?
—'Tis said, that they are outrageous against Churchmen; if they have offended against law, let them be punished by law—But two ways of punishment; if pecuniary, that makes them desperate by poverty; if by Banishment, they will watch opportunities of mischief—
'Tis this Euroclydon, this violent East-wind, that brought
in the caterpillers.
Mr Swynfin answers Sir Phil. Musgrave.] That what is
done by the Act of Uniformity, is the same in Qu. Eliz.
and King James's time, but then the oath now enjoined
was not, nor any thing like it—Many that fled then,
differed in judgment when abroad, but things were so
managed in the subscriptions then, that they came home
and conformed—But in after-times the Bishops enjoined
severer canons—After Bishop Abbott's time, a great deal
of alteration; something in doctrine, and many things
in ceremonies; which had a great influence upon the
misfortunes that succeeded—We have complaints of the
thinness of churches, and now that before we consider
any thing of his Majesty's speech, we make a second
Address to him, to put the laws in execution—The
Declaration from Breda not considered—What has the
severity of the laws produced? So many poorer subjects
than we had before, and the Crown weakened—Does any
thing of this tend to the Honour of this House, or the
safety of us abroad?—What service is in the Bishop's
Courts that is answerable to the discontents that this penal law gives? He is not for any thing of toleration as
to parties, but to indulge tender consciences that dissent
only in ceremonies.
Sir John Birkenhead answers Mr Swynfin.] In Queen
Eliz. time a toleration for Sectaries and Papists was
much laboured—Was persuaded much not to disunite
Stapleton, Harding, and Fitzherbert, from the Church,
and they would promise neither to write nor preach; but
yet she would not let them stay—Had she done it, her
power to keep things quiet, as she did forty-five years in
spite of them all, had been lost—Bellarmine took most
of his arguments from these men—The Millenaries
from a thousand hands petitioned about this very business
of dispensation, but she would not grant it, though they
were Legions—When King James summoned his Council about this, he told them, "His soul was not at rest,
he was libelled both by Papists and Puritans for tolerating both."—He made the Judges assemble in the Star
Chamber, where he declared, "God out mine and me,
if ever I suffer Toleration!"—King James by this lived
most peaceably. But when Mr Pym declared, That it
was not the doctrine, but the discipline they dissented
from, then they fell to tearing of surplices, and so
things begin now; therefore would have his Majesty
moved to put the laws in execution; that as we know
our country's minds, the King may know ours.
Mr Waller.] Toleration is not the sense of his Majesty's speech, but of uniting his Protestant subjects—For
us to go in a body to his Majesty to desire the laws
against Conventicles may be put in execution—The
Lords are concerned, it may be—They went once to the
King for adjourning the House, but they ought to do it
only in things that concern themselves—We would not
have the Lords find the way to the King; it is a thing
that looks like a disagreeing, to go without them, and
with the King, not to consider his speech: Levity,
anger, and haste, not to be in this business.—No consideration should weigh with him that looks like a ruin
of the Church; though to improve trade, or make us
greater—Some say history is, some say 'tis not so—Have
not we, ever since we sat, backed this act with other severe laws, and still, if the Physician hath used all his
arts, they are but conjectural, and all do the patient
no good—The King makes Lords, but not Commoners;
the people send us, and in Queen Eliz. time the people
favoured the persecuted Protestants—Popery and Prelacy were the persecuted party, and the people love the
last persecuted party—Perhaps the way we are in is so,
perhaps not so—The Address is good, but moves for
another day to consider of it.
Sir Walt. Yonge.] Bishop Bramhall, speaking of the
restoration of the Church, not as a prophet, but foretelling events from causes, said, "That the Church,
he feared, would not stand at a good game, but in
desiring to be thirty-one, would hazard to draw out."
The herdsmen use not their beasts as the shepherd uses
his sheep—Moves against the address.
Sir Robert Howard.] This address to his Majesty will
work a despair in the Nonconformists.
Sir Tho. Clifford.] All the great zealots of the Roman
church are pleased in orders according as the light of
their zeal guides them—The Clergy find we have a sick
body—The Convocation sit daily—The Lords have a
concern as well as we, and in this business they are not
at all consulted with.
We have a fire in the middle of the room, let us not
kick it about to set all on fire.
Mr Boscawen.] Let us not compell people in point of
conscience, as the Spaniards baptized, by driving thousands of Indians into the river at once.
[Resolved, That the House address themselves in a Body to
his Majesty, to desire him to issue forth his Proclamation for
the enforcing the Laws against Conventicles, &c.]
[March 5, omitted.]
Friday, March 6.
A Message from his Majesty, "to hasten the Supply, being
pressed by his Allies, and the spring being sar advanced, and
having occasion for building more ships and forts, &c.
[In a Grand Committee on the Supply.]
Sir Tho. Meres, in his report from the Custom-house.]
A Moiety of the Tobacco that comes into England does
not go out again, nor a tenth of the wines.
Sir John Duncombe.] The estimate of Sheerness, Gravesend, and Plymouth, will come to 90,000 l.
Mr Sollicitor Finch] Would have the intention of the
House commensurate to the occasion—Would have no
negative questions, but affirmative—That the sum shall
be 300,000 l.
Mr Waller, speaking of the ill victualling of the
ships, said,] Meum elementum non est cibus, only vehiculum
nutrimenti—Doubts that the not setting out a fleet the
last year, was a greater charge than the setting out would
have been. By Chatham miscarriage, once the two millions and a half served but five months—He would
have the 300,000 l. come whole the interest for the
King considered; the last was granted with consideration
for the taking up the 1,600,000 l.
Sir Abraham Collen] Moves to have a Committee to
enquire into an Impost upon Coaches.
Sir Thomas Meres.] 'Tis a poor thing, that after expending six millions for trade, that now trade will not
bear 300,000 l.
Mr Jones.] Laying it upon trade will be a great hindrance to the building of the city—Should the customs
be laid double, the farmers would not give half so much
for them as they do; it puts such a discouragement upon
trade—Places of trade have been more taxed than the
country—He pays for his goods more than for his land
in the country ratably—Would have the common shoulder bear the common burden.
Mr Sollicitor Finch] Calls this of Imposition upon the
Custom-house, a home-excise upon shipping—The Dutch
have gained our privilege in the Levant, of freight, and
worked us out quite; and this way is to discourage navigation yet more.
Col. Birch.] This way destroys all foreign trade, by
putting yet more difficulties upon it; as for example; if
upon galls, you destroy all your dying, and so your
woollen manufacture—Proposes a sub-Committee to take
proposals only, and digest them for the House.
[A Committee was appointed to consider of raising of money
by the Duty of Tonnage of goods imported.]
Saturday, March 7.
[Debate on the Supply resumed.]
Sir Cha. Wheeler.] The Duke of Ormond has lately had
granted to him 50,000 l. for his own use, and above
100,000 l. more in the Butler's land granted to him, for
which he had no pretence of evidence at all—He has had
more granted to him from the King than any subject in
England, except Lord Clarendon—Would have that enquired into for raising the King's supply.
Sir Nicholas Carew.] Made a motion for the Sale of
Dean and Chapters lands; which
Sir Robert Howard.] Seconded; and proposed a way
how it might be done; and yet they not prejudiced.
[The project took not.]
Lord Cavendish.] Moves, that offices, both at Court
and elsewhere, might be rated, with Lawyers.
Sir John Northcote.] Would have added to them, dignified Clergy, and Ecclesiastical Officers.
Mr Secretary Morrice.] The lands came to the Clergy
by favour—They have no inheritance in them—What
did first found, may overthrow—The Canon Law,
that makes it sacrilege to alienate, says also, that what
any Churchman does accumulate must not be put to a
secular use, but revert to the Church—Many have wives
and children, which may be considered; but many have
none, and good temporal estates—They were, I know,
given with great devotion and execration; and I would not
take any of those coals from the altar, for fear of burning my own fingers—Education is chargeable, especially to men of eminent learning in those places—They
hold in Frank Almoyne
(fn. 1) —They are to pray for us,
and I would not have them meddled with.
[The consideration of the Manner of the Supply was deferred
[March 9, omitted.]
Tuesday, March 10.
[Debate on a Clause to be added to the Bill for preventing
Thests and Robberies. The first paragraph, touching eighty
days for apprehending Thieves, being read, it passed in the Negative, 72 to 36. The second paragraph, relating to Robberies
between Sun-rising and Sun-setting, was next read.]
Mr Waller.] When the Law of the Hundreds repaying the robbery was made, men had not the use of firearms; nothing but clubs and pitchforks; and the thieves
might have been stopped—Crepusculum, in that Law, is
an uncertain thing; one man sees when another doth
Mr Vaughan.] By the Almanack a man may know
when the Sun rises; but for Crepusculum every man
may know it, and he is not put upon an impossibility of
Sir Richard Temple.] Would not have swearing in the
case—Too much to rest upon that—We may establish
iniquity by a law.
[It passed in the Negative.]
[Debate on the Supply resumed.]
Mr Vaughan.] All taxes in effect are Land Taxes—
They are distinguished only by names, and are not really
Mr Waller.] The Subsidy is with a salvo contenemento,
the sparable part of a man's estate, debts, and charge
of children considered—In Land-tax there is no consideration of debts, &c. though a man owes as much as
he is worth; therefore most unequal.
Sir Robert Howard.] Subsidy is still land-tax in effect;
it will immediately come out of the country—As to
wine, it cannot be laid at the Custom-house; 'tis not
there to be found. Excise will have an army of officers
—Would have it upon the retailer, by pint and quart.
Mr Sollicitor Finch.] Imposition upon the Spanish
wines is the most unreasonable and unnatural thing that
can be—The way to make a breach with the house of
Austria, now well cemented—But we fear, what is little
troublesome and chargeable will endure—But can any,
with impudence, continue a charge longer than the Law
has given?—We need fear none but ourselves in the
continuation of it.
Mr Coventry.] Fears that the taking the duty from
hand to hand, beginning at the Custom-house, will bring
more money to Westminster Hall than to the King.
[Resolved, That a Committee of the whole House be free to
consider of a way to raise moneys upon Wines.]
Wednesday, March 11.
[The House resumed the Consideration of the latter part of
the King's Speech, about uniting his Majesty's Protestant subjects.]
Sir John Goodrick.] Moved that the Convocation might
take this business into their consideration.
Sir Thomas Meres.] It may be his Majesty's Proclamation may reconcile them, finding no countenance from
Sir Robert Holt.] Would know what the Nonconformists desire, declared by some body; if their arguments
are not convincing, then to adhere to our former vote.
Colonel Sandys.] Never knew a Toleration, without
an army to keep all quiet—Let persons concerned propose what they would have.
Sir Humphry Winch.] What they will ask, and what
they will take, vastly different—Thinks we need not give
an indulgence, nor make the Laws severer—Heresies
commonly take root from the innocency of their authors,
which has made them increase here—An army is as dangerous to establish by being too strait-laced, as by giving
toleration—He had rather new-model the Sectaries, than
that they should have an interest in future Parliaments
to model us.
Sir John Earnly.] Would have the Ecclesiastical Courts
reformed, which are so obnoxious.
Sir William Hickman.] The Bishop has little power in
the Church but Ordination—The Ecclesiastical Courts
are complained of by the Bishops as mysterious and troublesome to the people
Mr Swynfin.] Education in another way has been a
great cause of separation—Proposes one question concerning the thing itself, That some condescension from
the laws in being may be had, to unite his Majesty's
Sir Philip Warwick.] If we could so relax the law,
as not to loose the law, he would willingly condescend
to some indulgence, that neither the agenda nor the credenda may be violated—If I prove that a man needs not
scruple any thing in the Church, why should he be farther indulged?—Would have care taken, that, after indulgence, they get not a footing to destroy the whole—
'Tis an unreasonable thing to pass a vote, that some condescension may be, before we know what.
Mr Ratcliffe.] Would have the Act of Uniformity revised, to discover what, in that Act, is too strict, as renouncing the Covenant, Assent and Consent—Moves that
a conference may be allowed, of both persuasions, and
to recommend that, in which they all agree, to your
consideration; and that if any thing should be established for a law, that an eye may be had to real tender
consciences—That Ecclesiastical Courts may be regulated.
Sir Walter Yonge.] The case of the Clergy of England
with the King, is as a master of a family that has quarrelsome servants; one will not stay unless the other
goes away—No good to be had by Conference, or the
Sir Charles Wheeler.] Has a great kindness for the
Preshyterians, being assistant in their prayers and endeavours in the restoration of his Majesty; but could wish
their penitence had been as public as their first offences
were, as the custom of the Church ever was—But for
the Independents, which are Anabaptists, &c. many of
them are not Christians, some Arians, and some Socinians; but the Presbyterians are right as to matters of the
first Four Councils, which are indisputable—But when
they scruple that of the Chancellors in the Church, and
other novelties, not above five hundred years standing,
and if no other thing than reducing things to the first
four General Councils, be the case, would have a Committee appointed by us and the Lords, to consult with
both Houses of Convocation, and hopes by that to bring
in many Papists also.
Sir Thomas Littleton.] Let us do what is fit for ourselves to do; and if we do what is reasonable, and that
gives them not satisfaction, it rests not at our door—
The kingdom of Poland has the greatest toleration in the
world, and no standing Army, but upon occasion of
war—Their Militia is their only standing Army, which
is made up of all opinions, and they have never had any
wars upon religious accounts; and in their civil wars
upon temporal affairs, persons of all opinions have mixed—Barnevelt, in Holland, only offered at a disturbance,
and was taken off—The only party there was Arminian,
which he could wish was not so much received amongstour Clergy—Predestination and Free-will, in our thirtynine Articles, have occasioned all our disputes in the
Church of England—The Calvinist way has a loop-hole
to let Arminianism into our articles—All along Queen
Elizabeth's, King James's, and King Charles's time, whenever any of these points were disputed, at degree of
Doctor, all the points were regulated by the Convocation,
and then the current of the Church of England ran the
Calvinist way—Besides at the Synod of Dort—So long as
the Church was true to itself, the Nonconformist never
hurt the Church; but as soon as innovation and alteration came in by the Churchmen, and they favourites with
the crown, the Church declined—In Ceremonies we
have much alteration; the Communion-table set Altarmanner, whereas it ought to be in the body of the
Church, that the guests might come to the table, and
the second service might be the better heard—No Canon
for the bowing at the Altar, or, if any, quite laid aside—
Now, if new ceremonies have been made, besides putting the Tapers [on the Communion-table,] if private
persons have dared to intrude these things against law,
what will be the end? and none but such as will comply with this innovation shall have any preferment; and
as this way has once ruined the Church, he hopes the
Parliament will not countenance the doing of it again—
King Edward and Queen Elizabeth prepared all things
before they came to the Parliament—Would have the
King applied to, to give us some subject-matter to work
Sir John Cotton.] The Presbyterian tenets are most
destructive to our government—"That the King is but
Minister Bonorum:" "He is greater than any one man,
but less than the People:" "Salus populi suprema lex,"
and many more such.
Sir John Birkenhead.] Theodosius, the Emperor, so enjoined the sanctions of the councils, that no man, unconformable to them, could administer the sacraments—
Socinus's opinions crept into the Sects of Poland, which
made the Cossacks always enquire, when they made any
inroads, what the Sectaries did—Religion in Holland is
subservient to trade—They reproved Mr Price, the English minister, and sent him away, for preaching against
their Sunday markets.—Queen Elizabeth's Council advised
her to keep Edward VIth's Liturgy, in which she made little alteration, and enjoined conformity; and King James,
in his Acts of Indemnity, excepts Nonconformists—Queen
Elizabeth would never suffer Nonconformity, though the
Earl of Essex would have given security for the peaceableness of the persons—King James let them have a
conference at Hampton Court; he would abate nothing:
at last Dr Reynolds came in and conformed—Queen Elizabeth was favourable to Papists, but made severe laws
against Priests; and when the People had no Mass they
came to Church—The Articles of the Church of England were drawn so, that both parties might subscribe—
The Convocation was a very mixed assembly of both
persuasions—No Canon nor Sanction enjoins bowing at
the Altar—Bishop Morton never did it; 'tis left at liberty
—In Judaism, Paganism, Mahometanism, and Christianity, in none of them a toleration is suffered—The
Pope may suffer Milan to have St Ambrose's Litany, and
Bohemia to administer the sacrament in both kinds; this
he may do in one Church, but not several customs in one
Church—He would never advise his Prince to do what
has destroyed his father—He would not have the odium of
this business lie upon the King—He would have no application made to him in it—Let there be no Conventicles, and the Church will be fuller—Must their Mother,
the Church of England, bow to a few novices; and for
the old ones, they have falsified their former oaths and
subscriptions—For benefices, no man has three, as is alleged; if any man has three, they are, ipso facto, by
law forfeited—Conference has been already at the Savoy
—It has done no good—He would have the Convocation
Mr Coventry.] Here is one side against Bishops, and another against the silenced Ministers; between them both,
I fear, we shall have no religion—The King bids us, in
his Speech, do it, and we send to the King to do it—
Would have the Committee for Religion revived, to receive what shall be proposed.
Mr Boscawen.] The civil wars in England come upon
various occasions—Though the occasion of the last was
much upon this account, yet it is not probable there will
be any more—Many other occasions may bring them.
Mr Seymour.] Will rather veil the infirmities of his
mother, the Church, than proclaim them in Gath and
Askalon—He is for Comprehension—Two or three of
the most eminent Presbyters may be made Bishops, and
so an end of Nonconformity—Would have a liberty,
but no farther than whether to wear a plain garment,
a fringed or embroidered one, that these persons may
be useful to the support of the Government—He is for
no middle way—If a man sinds not his account in the
Government he lives under, he will never labour to support it—The effects of the Act of Uniformity have been
much for the good of Holland, in point of trade—Mischiefs having outgrown politic remedies, they must
have gentle remedies—He would have an address to his
Majesty, to give them some liberty that might not endanger the public peace.
Sir Robert Atkins.] Would have his Majesty name
some persons, such as he shall think fit; not of both
persuasions, but persons of prudence.
Sir Robert Carr.] Fears that his Majesty is possessed
that the House of Commons is fond of Toleration, and
that we are possessed that his Majesty is fond of it.
[The farther Debate was ordered to be reassumed this day
Thursday, March 12.
[Debate concerning the Supply resumed.]
Colonel Sandys.] Moves for Privy-seals, as in the business of 1588, when an Act of Parliament could
not be speedily had—Would have an Act to extend to
moneyed persons only; no man to lend above 500 l. and
none under 50 l.
Sir Jonathan Trelawney.] Moves for a Committee to
go to treat with the citizens, to advance 100,000 l.
upon the security of the House.
Mr Waller.] Would not have the people sold for
offices—The forbidding any Member to receive or farm
this money, as if, now nothing is to be got by this business, that none of our Members should meddle with it.
[Resolved, That Commissioners be appointed to assess retailers
of wine and brandy for the raising the hundred thousand pounds
towards the Supply.]
Friday, March 13.
[Upon some proffers of a Debate about the latter part of the
King's Speech, which the Bill against Conventicles seemed to
Sir Thomas Littleton.] It is dangerous to make laws too
big to be executed, although some over-forward men
may execute them—The Churchmen are arrived to that
pass, as to bring in what ceremonies they please, though
they lie under suspicion of Popery; and that others must
conform to these innovations—What hope can we have
of their doing any good from those that should be men
of mercy, and carry things with the greatest severity ?
Sir Giles Strangeways.] When such formidable mushrooms should start up in a night that are too great for
the Law, no prudent state will suffer their Laws to be
flown upon—'Tis a trouble to him to hear the Church
of England arraigned—It was upon the suspicion of Popery that Archbishop Laud's head was cut off; and what
will they have Popery seven years hence, when asking
blessing is now Popery?—Is this the way to make union,
for every man to be tolerated his profession ?—Would
have ourselves in this House reformed—He is sorry to
hear any thing of Toleration countenanced here—No
man can blame him for being zealous in his religion, as
they are in theirs—Must a father yield his authority to
his son ?
[Leave was given to bring in a Bill for continuance of the
former Act against Conventicles.]
Saturday, March 14.
[A Paper was brought in by the Commissioners of Accounts,
concerning Prize goods. " Sir George Carteret desired a few days
the better to explain his accounts to the Commissioners—The
Lord Lieutenants militia money not meddled with by the Lord
Treasurer—Captain Valentine Pine absconds, and will not answer
his charge about the moneys for fortifications, &c.—Tickets were
paid at the Navy-Office that were bought when the seamen could
not be paid—Many other abuses about tickets—The Commissioners had made progress into several other offices."]
Tuesday, March 17.
[Debate concerning the Supply resumed.]
Sir William Coventry.] Merchants in Holland, having
not much land to purchase there, employ their money
generally in trade—'Tis otherwise in England; for as
soon as a merchant has got a good stock of money, he
presently buys an estate—They still plant tobacco in
England, and if more imposition be laid, it will destroy
the foreign tobacco, and nurse up our English plantations
—We import much from abroad, and the laying the
duty at the Custom-house will much hinder the bringing
Sir Thomas Lee.] In tobacco you cannot tell who is
the last retailer, it goes through so many hands; four or
five at least; therefore would have it rated at the Customhouse.
Sir Thomas Clifford, speaking of the Plantations.] Once
a year Long Lane is swept of old cloaths and books—
What costs the merchant 40 l. yields the King 80,000 l.
and sometimes the merchant will lose and forfeit his tobacco, when it is damaged, rather than pay the Custom.
If the Duty be laid at the Custom-house, the less
will be imported—But if a patentee can get money by
it as formerly, why should not money be raised now
upon it by law ?—The serpent will be no more in this
weed at the Custom-house than by way of excise.
Mr Waller.] 'Tis much worse to lay this upon the
Customs than wines; Plantations being not in that case
—We have Negatives upon all old ways, which, is continued, is the way, (though in other words) to say, the
King shall have no Supply—Though the merchants are
against the Custom-house way, and would lay it upon
land, yet if no rents are paid, we cannot buy of them,
and they at last must perish with us.
Sir Robert Carr.] Finds that Excise, from the beginning of the Session, has been aimed at, rather than a
Mr Vaughan.] When you find what the merchant has,
you may easily guess at the proportion rented by the
Mr Swynfin.] A motion that carries all its form along
with it, is most plausible—It was the multitude of commodities that occasioned a multitude of officers, when collected upon retailers; but now here is but one commodity charged.
[Resolved, That an additional Duty be laid on wine at the
Wednesday, March 18.
[On the Supply—About charging money at interest.]
Sir Charles Harbord.] Fears it will discover our nakedness, and deceive the King, in the raising this money.
Sir Lancelot Lake.] If we go thus from one Poll to
the other, he fears the country will be too hot for us—
We had better have a Palate Bill than a Poll Bill—
Would have it upon wine and beer.
Sir Humphrey Winch.] Would have this thing Excise
defined, that we may know what this Devil is, to avoid
him—He takes it only to be the cutting off the sparable
part of a commodity.
Mr Vaughan.] If you lay it upon trade in a subsidiary
way, it will be objected, Shall no body else bear any
thing but such as have stocks?—Unless the gentlemen
of trade will appositely explain themselves, we cannot
well debate this argument—In common commerce men
have not the money their stocks may justly bear; so laying it upon Poll, it will be concurrent, if you lay it
universal—We have gone so far as to declare we cannot
lay it upon land—If we lay it upon Poll, that must be
upon their estates, which you have declined, unless you
would lay it upon the colour of a man's cloaths—Upon
titles and dignities, it is still upon estates—Suppose you
would excuse a person not worth 20 l. the last Poll you
had not 300,000 l. what can you then estimate this Poll
at, and you take that up you have so often declined.
Mr Prynne.] For consiscation of those estates of the
Duellists (Duke of Buckingham, &c.) in this interval of
Parliament, towards his Majesty's Supply.
Sir Thomas Littleton said,] They have their pardons
from the King, and if Prynne had not his, he might
have been in the same predicament—The Clergy may
bear a Subsidy better than any sort of people—'Tis now
seven years since the King came in—If you revert the
Clause in the Bill that exempts the Clergy, it will do
your work—The Bill of 2,500,000 l.
Mr Secretary Morrice.] The Poll moderately laid, the
Clergy may bear it as well as any sort of people. Now
they are about to renew their leases.
[Debate, whether the Clergy should be comprehended in the
Sir William Coventry.] The Chapter of Windsor
alone has laid out 26,000 l. in repairs, and other charitable uses, since they were restored—Generally the
old Clergy are dead, and have left their successors in very
lean places—He has many other instances of that nature,
but is unprepared to speak to the business; but will satisfy any gentleman, he having collected many particulars of that nature.
Mr Sollicitor Finch.] Besides the iniquity and injustice
of the example, the Clergy estates being already gone
into other families, never any tax since our late necessities were the Clergy taxed with, but by the Convocation;
but in a Poll Bill, as they are a part of mankind, they
have been—Never did the Parliament lay any tax upon
the Laity, that the Clergy did rise without taxing themselves in their Convocation—If they, who know the sore
and the weaker places of the Clergy, tax themselves, can
we know them better?—The Papists say that since Pater
Noster was out of England we have built few churches;
but Bishop Andrews demonstrates, that the Clergy, in
works of piety, are not, since that time, debtors to mankind—His Grace of Canterbury
(fn. 2) is now building a
theatre at Oxford worth 15,000 l.—Look upon Cardinals
and their nephews (we have none of them) and you
will not see such public works, or any like ours, either
public or private.
Mr Waller.] In these things, on both sides, great
mistakes, and much partiality—In King James's time,
for the Palatinate, we here gave three subsidies, the
Clergy six—He has been told by old men it was usual,
but withall, that this House never taxed the Clergy—But
in the tax for Ireland, the Clergy were taxed with the
parish; but what they lost by it in dignity they got in
profit—We then broke in upon them—The matter was
about religion—Should we make a new Law, we break
in upon them afresh—Among themselves they will consider the meaner Clergy—Let us see what they will do,
and consider them accordingly—Perhaps we may do less
upon them than they themselves; therefore put no negative upon them.
Mr Vaughan.] Affirms that the Clergy were never here
rated till our Interregnum—The Clergy, upon the roll,
is often called one of the estates, in calculating the quality of the people, but in Law-making not—He would
set the House right in that point.
[A Poll Bill was ordered to be brought in, in which no householder not worth 20 l. was to be taxed for himself or his children; and so much of the 200,000 l. which should not be raised
by the Poll Bill, or otherwise given this Session, should be supplied by an imposition upon wines at the Custom-house.]
[Adjourned till after Easter.]
Thursday, March 26, 1668.
[A Bill to enable the County Palatine of Durham to send
two Knights for the County, and two Citizens for the City of
Durham, was read.]
Mr Crouch.] The West and the North have already
so many Knights and Burgesses, that the Midland, in all
taxes, smart for it, in their being over-rated.
Mr Steward.] It is a hard case that that County
should be taxed in all Parliaments, and yet have no representatives.
Mr Voughan.] Thinks the inconvenience of Durham
is now no more than formerly—If we have all our Members here, we have no room for them—If we bring in
more Members, we may, by the same reason, multiply
them to as many more—The county of York has many,
but they may as well put in for Knights for every Riding;
and the northern parts are sufficiently provided already.
Sir Thomas Strickland.] The County Palatine of Durham was never taxed in Parliament by ancient privilege
before King James's time, and so needed no representatives; but now being taxed, it is but reasonable they
Sir Thomas Meres.] Moves that the Shires may have
an increase of Knights, and that some of the small Boroughs, where there are but few electors, may be taken
away, and a Bill for that purpose.
[On a division, the Bill was rejected, 65 to 50.]
[Sir William Coventry gave this particular to several of the
Members of the expences of the Clergy since the King came in,
viz. " That the Bishops, Deans and Chapters, and Prebends, in
repairs, abatements of fines, redemption of captives, and other
charitable uses, have disbursed 413,800 l."]
Friday, March 27.
[A Bill for the relief of the wives and children of persons
dying intestate, was read the second time.
The custom of London, after payment of the debts, obliges
the administrator to leave the remainder to be divided between
the wife and children, one third to the wife, and the rest equally to be divided amongst the children. A Bill was moved
for to compell the administrators to do the same throughout England.]
Doctor Burwell.] The power of granting administration is as ancient as the Church of England itself.
Mr Milward.] The case prayed by the Bill is, That a
writ De rationabili parte bonorum may be all England over,
to take it out of the Church, and put it into the hands
of twelve men—He would have it distributed amongst
the wife and children, but the power not wholly to be
taken out of the Ecclesiastical Courts; but the business
committed may be consulted at the Committee to redress them.
Sir Charles Harbord.] The Civil Lawyers must not be
discouraged; the Court of Admiralty upholds our trade,
and there are foundations in most colleges for breeding
up that profession.
[It was moved, that the Civilians might be heard at the Bar;
to which the Speaker said, " That hearing things at the Bar is
" but lately crept in amongst us; it was not so anciently."]
Sir Thomas Meres.] Would not have these proceedings
changed, but the faults amended—Would have it enquired, whether these proceedings of the Chancellors
were anciently so, or are innovations—It is too slight a
consideration to have it discussed by a Committee of ten
persons—It is an alteration of a Law already made.
Mr Vaughan.] If you hear this at the Bar by council,
what Law can you make that will not occasion you to be
moved, that council should be heard ? The Bond for
due administration is not for distribution, but for due
administering debts—The Bond is in the King's name,
and the forfeiture the caution; but here is no distribution for the wife and children: the whole matter is clearly out of them—In Magna Charta this writ De rationabili parte bonorum was at Common Law, and discontinued
only since Fitzherbert's time—But if it be clear that the
rationabilis pars may be had amongst the children, it
matters not whether the power be in the Ecclesiastical
Courts, or at Common Law.
Sir Job Charlton.] Would not have this power of administration discretional—The power of Committees hearing council on both sides, is derived from the House,
and needs not be inserted in the order.
The Speaker.] Impositions, by way of tax, cannot
come down from the Lords by way of amendment in a
Bill; but Penalties may.
[The Bill was committed.]
[March 28, 30, and 31, omitted.]