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rather than resist, threw a sop to the royal oppressor of £70,000, upon the understanding that the lord mayor and aldermen should henceforward remain undisturbed. Charles quietly pocketed the bribe, but carried forward the process, as if nothing had happened, and retained his enormous plunder. Valuable as it no doubt proved, he found it at last a sort of Naboth's vineyard-too dearly purchased. Pym declared, as late in the civil war as Waller's engagement, that within the walls of London, as circumstances then and afterwards demonstrated, for one wishing • writing well to the king and royalists, there were three against
them.' The metropolis told more then upon general public opinion, than it does now. No marvel that thousands of the middle classes felt for their swords. Many among the aristocracy had shared in the spoils, and indulged sundry cachinnations at the idea of plebeian scoundrels aspiring to become politicians and gentlemen. Yet in 1639, a vast mass of monopolies were called in and annulled. Scotland as we have seen, commenced the strife; for in that land John Knox had dropt his robe of fearlessness, when his stern, but truthful soul ascended to its reward. The prosecution of Lord Balmerino, the advancement of the prelacy to participation in secular power, the offensive compilation of canons and a liturgy for the churches, stirred up the spirits of men at Edinburgh and Glasgow. Tumults in those places, to suppress which the crown had very trifling means at command, led gradually, through the regal obduracy and blindness, to the institution of the Four Tables, as they were termed, and the Solemn League and Covenant. The former were deputations representing the different interests of the nobility, clergy, gentry, and burghers of North Britain ; all loud and unanswerable in their demands for the withdrawal of the late obnoxious measures, the abolition of the High Commission, a restriction of episcopal arrogance, the restoration of the privileges of assemblies, and the convention of a parliament. When their commissioners appeared in London, Pym, together with Hampden, and lords Essex, Bedford, Holland, and Say, forthwith joined them. Wentworth, Laud, and Hamilton, also met together at Whitehall, when a war was resolved on against the refractory covenanters. As the exchequer would want supplies, the first proposed a loan, subscribing himself the enormous contribution of £20,000, by way of example to encourage others. As if this were not enough, he pledged himself to bring over from Ireland large subsidies, if his majesty would call a parliament there. The ice thus broken, after å lapse of twelve years, it was further resolved_to summon one in England also. Wentworth was created Earl of Strafford; and on the 3rd of April, 1640, the king opened the session in person. It must never be forgotten, that before he had consented to issue the writs, he had put a
question to his ministers, whether upon the restiveness of the house of Commons, they would consent to assist him by extraordinary ways? Laud, Nixon, Wentworth, Hamilton, Cottington, Vane, and Windebanke assented, and a vote was passed to that effect.
Pym by common assent assumed the leadership of the country party in this parliament. He proved himself the concentrated essence of all the folios of precedent which had ever been compiled at Westminster. With Hampden by his side he had ridden through several of the counties, previous to the elections, to organize suitable returns, and promote petitions upon such points as might be really useful. Charles was as ungracious as a monarch could well be; nor were his representatives in the lower house more prudent. The member for Tavistock opened the campaign in an oration of two hours, which may be described as a prologue to the subsequent struggle. He expatiated with mingled skilfulness and eloquence on the three grand classes of grievances, as they affected parliament,—religion,--and the liberty of the subject. The effect of this speech was so extraordinary throughout England, that it has been made matter of grave comment with nearly every historian of the period. Abbreviated copies of it were taken down and circulated, says May, ' with great greediness; for in truth it sounded as the cry of freedom vindicating her rights, and agonizing to get loose from the grasp of the oppressor. The lords then passed two resolutions, at the earnest request of his majesty, declaring that supplies ought to precede a redress of abuses; which notable motions John Pym forth with presented to the Commons as a gross breach of privilege. His own house nobly supported him; and he had the pleasure of being shortly sent up to the bar of the Peers, with an address, requesting their lordships for the time to come to take no notice of any thing debated by the Commons, until they should themselves declare the same to the upper house. Pym moreover delivered his mes. sage with not a few dignified but forcible expressions, which might have opened the eyes of acute observers as to the altering position of parties. The patriot received thanks on his return for the 'good service he had done ;' but Charles demanding by message whether the Commons would vote money or not,-a question followed up by a proposition from the treasurer for twelve subsidies, in consideration of which the sovereign should surrender his right to ship-money,---protracted discussions arose, which terminated in a hasty dissolution. From the ashes of this quarrel emerged the Long Parliament.
Pym now felt that one effort more only was necessary to secure his object. His labours multiplied with the demands of the occasion : for indeed the prize was within reach, or at least was clearly discerned by those who could peruse the signs of the times. He
formed the closest combination between all the liberal lords and commoners of note, who could be kept in town; he drew the cords of friendship closer between themselves and the Scotch commissioners; he corresponded with every absent patriot who could serve the cause; the seats of Lord Say and Sir Richard Knightly (son-in-law to Hampden), were fixed upon as convenient places in Oxfordshire and Northamptonshire for frequent consultations; a private press was established at the latter spot, and worked wonders ;-whilst precisely as Pym had predicted, the disastrous course of the Scotch war was dragging Charles Stuart to the feet of his indignant subjects. A council of peers had been summoned at York, as a last resource; of which Pym no sooner heard, than he prepared a petition for a parliament, with the names of Bedford, Hertford, Essex, and Warwick at its head; and with which he repaired to York forthwith to present it in person. Eight more lords were there persuaded to sign it; and meanwhile a similar document, set in motion by himself before his departure from London, now reached his hands with 10,000 signatures subscribed to it of metropolitan citizens. The effect turned out irresistible ; for other petitions now fast flowed in from different quarters, to the same purport; so that the king, hunted through all the sinuosities of those tendencies to treachery, which had descended to him from his father, once again yielded to stern necessity, and issued writs for a new parliament to meet on the third of the ensuing November.
And now again, without the pause of an instant, Pym and Hampden were seen in the discharge of their duty, as the chiefs and advisers of the people. It is stated in several books of the time, and repeated by many of the historians, that between the interval of the issue of the writs and the elections, they rode as before through every county in England, urging the electors to their duty. Warwick, Brooke, and Bedford, Lord Kimbolton (the Earl of Manchester's son), Fiennes, second son to Lord Say, and the younger Vane, exerted theniselves meanwhile in their respective districts; and Warwick soon wrote to his Essex friends from York, so recently the head quarters of the king, that the game was well begun. The party of the king were not less active, but they were less successful. In the opinion of the great mass of the people, Pym was the author of this parliament ; and by the common consent of all he was to be placed in the position of its leader. Preparing himself for that great office, he well knew that the highest duty of his life, and the most fatal there awaited him. He was to keep his old appointment with Wentworth, now the Earl of Strafford.'
- pp. 128, 129.
Twelve weary years had now elapsed since Pym had threatened his apostate friend with a visionary doom. Wentworth, although falling in at last with the designs of Charles towards Scotland,
could not fail, any more than Laud or the Earl of Northumberland then Lord Admiral, to perceive that clouds of danger were rapidly gathering round the throne. The second Scotch campaign proved analogous to the first. A route at Newburn had brought the Covenanters to Newcastle; where by the treaty of Ripon, good quarters were secured for them, with an allowance of £850 per diem. Exasperation increased on all sides. The recent convocation of the clergy had fared no better than the recent parliament. Their new canons, as well as the infamous et cetera Oath, shocked all reasonable persons with the established church and its hierarchy. Mitres, coronets, and the crown crowded nearer and nearer together, like fowls anticipating a tempest. Henrietta coquetted with her Catholics; and troops were to be enlisted in the Low Countries, if Spain would permit. Cardinal Richelieu had afforded some small yet seasonable assistance to the Scotch before they crossed the Tweed. Even Strafford felt the shadow of his destiny, and wished to remain absent. His health, never strong, was breaking down through an accumulation of cares as well as diseases, which perhaps never man before had sustained under such painful circumstances. As if the mark of the axe had been on his forehead, he implored his ruthless and deceitful master that he might return to Ireland. The royal sign-manual assured him that not a hair of his head should be hurt,—though it detained him in London nevertheless ; for who could abide so well the approaching storm ? It burst with a clap of thunder. The member for Tavistock on the eleventh of November, moved that the strangers' room should be cleared, the doors being shut, and the key laid upon the table. After an interval of four hours, spent by multitudes outside in various and intense anxiety, John Pym issued from the House of Commons, followed by upwards of three hundred representatives of the people, with whom, proceeding to the bar of the Peers, he there impeached Thomas Earl of Strafford, adding also all his other titles, of high treason against his majesty and the liberties of England !
• The Earl was already in the house, according to Clarendon, when Pym appeared at the bar : and was even prepared with evidence of a correspondence, between Pym and other popular leaders, and the Scotch, supplied by the perfidy or forgery of Lord Saville, on which he designed that very instant to accuse them of treason. According to the lively and graphic narrative of Baillie, however, Strafford had not yet entered the house, with this view ; but after Pym's sudden appearance, the earl's is thus described : 'the lords began to consult on that strange and unexpected motion. The word goes in haste to the lord lieutenant, where he was with the king ; with speed he comes to the house ; he calls rudely at the door ; James Maxwell, Keeper of the Black Rod, opens ; his lordship with a proud glooming countenance,
makes towards his place at the board's head : but at once, many bid him void the house; so he is forced in confusion, to go to the door till he was called. After consultation, being called in, he stands, but is commanded to kneel, and on his knees to hear the sentence. Being on his knees, he is delivered to the Keeper of the Black Rod, to be prisoner till he was eared those crimes the House of nons had charged him with. He offered to speak, but was commanded to be gone without a word. In the outer room, James Maxwell required him, as prisoner, to deliver his sword. When he had got it, he cries with a loud voice for his man to carry my lord lieutenant's sword. This done, he makes through a number of people, towards his coach,all gazing, no man capping to him, before whom, that morning, the greatest in England would have stood discovered. Coming to the place where he expected his coach, it was not there ; so he behoved to return that same way, through a world of gazing people. When, at last, he had found his coach, and was entering, James Maxwell told him,
Your lordship is my prisoner, and must go in my coach,' and so he behoved to do. For some days, too many went to visit him : but since, the parliament hath commanded his keeping to be straiter. The result proved this to have been what Pym anticipated, the masterstroke of the time. In whatever view, or in whatever sense, it is regarded, whether of regret or admiration, it cannot be denied to have been, in its practical results, the greatest achievement of this great age of statesmanship. It struck instant terror into every quarter of the court, and left the king for a time powerless and alone.'
-Pym, pp. 137, 138,
Every resolution of the House of Commons from this hour took the shape of action. True to his assumed and terrible character of THE GREAT ACCUSER, Pym then impeached William Laud, Archbishop of Canterbury; besides lodging informations against the bishops of Bath and Wells, and Ely, as well as against
other profligate ministers and corrupt judges. Sir Robert Berkeley was publicly arrested in his own court, taken off to prison from the very bench of justice, where he was sitting, 'to the great ter‘ror of all his profession.' Windebanke the secretary escaped to France; Lord Keeper Finch to Holland. The Puritans who had been whipt, pilloried, or mutilated, were released from their imprisonments, and came up to the capital in triumph amid the plaudits of their friends, and the sore mortification of their enemies. Laud, their persecutor, was in the Tower; and his new canons had been scattered to the winds. Deprived pastors were restored to their churches. Religion, in once again breathing freely, appealed to liberty rather than despotism, for her preservation. The Triennial Act was brought in and passed. Shipmoney was declared illegal. The penalties of a præmunire were denounced against all parties paying or receiving the duties of tonnage or poundage without the sanction of the House of Com,