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4.D.1679. jesty to constitute a new Privy Council, çon
lifting of thirty Noblemen and Gentlemen, 31 Car. II.
of the greatest Estates and Interest in the Kingdom, among whom he should include some of the leading Men in both Houses, who would thereby probably be brought over to his Majesty's Interest, and be able to stem that Torrent, which ac present bore down every thing before it : And that the King having communicated this Advice to the Lord Chancellor Finch, the Earls of Sunderland, and Essex, and the Lord Hallifax, they all highly approved it; whereupon his Majesty order'd an extraordinary Meeting of the Privy Council, on the 20th of April, and having thank'd them for their Service, and good Advice they had given him, he acquainted them with his Resolution of constituting a new one, of thirty Perfons, fifteen of whom were to be the Chief Officers of State, ten more of the Nobility, and five Commoners, whose known Abilities and Principles would render them
unsuspected of mistaking or betraying the The Chiefs
true Interest of the Kingdom. Among the of the Council
. Lords were Prince Rupert, the Archbishop
of Canterbury, the Lord Chancellor, the Duke of Monmouth, and Anthony Earl of Shaftsbury; and among the Commoners were the Lord William Rupel
, Edward Seymour, Efq; Sir Shaftsbury Wiliam Temple, and Henry Powle, Esq; President
Sir William Temple says, he opposed the bringing in the Earl of Shaftsbury with all his Might, foreseeing he would destroy all the Good that was expe&ed from the whole Constitution ; but the King, and the rest of the Lords, were of another Opinion : And to oblige Shaftsbury the more, it was thought fit to make him President of the Council.
The King was so firmly persuaded, that 4.D.1679: : this Condu, would restore his Affairs, that
31 Car. II. he went the same Day to the House of Peers, and having sent for the Commons, acquaint- The King ed them with this new Establishment; ob- acquaints
the Parlia. serving that he had made Choice of such Per
ment with sons as were worthy and able to advise him, the Alteraand was resolved, in all his weighty and im- tion of his
Ministry portant Affairs, next to the Advice of his great Council of Parliament, to be advised by this Council ; deliring they would apply themselves heartily, as he should do, to those Things which were necessary for the Good and Safety of the Kingdom. Bur though the Nation in general seem'd extreamly transported at this Alteration, as they testified by their Bells and Bonfires, the House of Commons received the News of ic with great Coldness: For Slaftsbury, though President Shaftsbury
still a Male. of the Council, finding the King had not that entire Confidence in him, as in fome others ; and embar. and that he must no more exped to infuence rasses the the King, as formerly, was so far from en
fairs. deavouring to advance his Majesty's Affairs, that he did all that lay in his power to distress and perplex them, by ftill fuggesting to the Parliament, the Danger of Popery; and that Proposes there was no way to prevent its being brought to his Parin, but by excluding the Duke of York from y, the Exthe Throne ; and this he did more effe&ual- the Duke ly, now he was at the Head of the Council, of York. and believed to have a considerable Share in the Administration, than he could possibly have done, had he remain'd in a private Station. Though he had, in Reality, little or no Interest in the King, at this Time, yet, suggesting to his Friends, that the Duke of Turk's Credit declin'd, and that the Duke of Vol. XXIII.
31 Cai, II.
AD.1679. Monmouth was now the great Favourite at
Court, by whose Assistance he should be able
their Trials, Mr. Nathaniel Reading, a Counpillory'd,
fellor at Law, and their Agent, was employ'd pering to found Bedloe, the principal Evidence against with Bed them, and try if he could induce him
to be honest, and to speak no more than the Truth ; and 'tis faid, Bedloe received several Sums of Mr. Reading on thar Score: But imagining, perhaps, that he might get more Money by betraying the Counsellor, he inform'd Shaftsbury, and the Fadion, that Reading had endeavour'd to corrupt him, and prevail with him to ftifle his Evidence against the Lords ; for which Misdemeanor he was brought to his Trial, at the Instance of the House of Commons, and sentenced to pay a Fine of one Thousand Pounds, to be imprison'd for a Year, and to stand in the Pillory, in the Palace-Yard; which Sentence was executed upon him, as a Terror to all those who Thould attempt to tamper with the Witnesses
of the Plor.
and pleading the King's Pardon, the Com-
Pardon ? Which being done, the Earl de- A.D.1679.
31 Car. II. The King, in order to make the Parliament The King easy in relation to the Succession of the proposes Crown, came to the House on the 30th of inhead ot
Expedients April, and told them, That it was his constant the ExCare to do every thing that might preserve clufios. their Religion, and secure it for the future in all Events ; and had commanded the Lord Chancellor to mention several Particulars, which he hop'd would shew, that in all Things which concern'd the publick Safety, he should not follow their Zeal, but lead it.
Whereupon, the Lord Chancellor acquainted them, That his Majesty was willing thać Provision might be made first, to diftinguish a Popish from a Proteftant Successor, and to limit and circumscribe the Authority of a Popish Succeffor in the following Cases : I. That all Ecclefiaftical Promotions, in the Gift of the Crown, should be conferr'd in such a Manner, that the Incumbents should always be the most pious and learned Proteftants; and that no Popish Succeffor should have power to controul such Presentments. II. That as it is provided already that no Papit should fit in either House of Parliament, fo, on the Demise of the Crown, the Parliament then in being should be indissoluble for a competent Tine; and if no Parliament was in being, the last should re-assemble. III. That none of the Privy-Council, or Judges, during the Reign of a Popish Successor, should be put in, or displaced, but by Authority of Parliament, and none but fincere Protestants should be Justices of Peace. IV. That no Lord Lieutenant, Deputy Lieutenant, or Of
A D.1679. ficer of the Navy, during the Reign of a
but by Parliament: And if any thing else
sent to it.
the Commons; they had been taught by
the Duke of Turk could secure them against
garding them, with their Impeachment against The Com.
the Earl of Danby, and in a Body, with their mand Speaker at the Head of them, demanded Judgment Judgment of the House of Lords against the against the Earl; for they conceiv'd his Pardon was void. Earl of Danby.
Soon afcer, they drew up an Address against
je&, and the Protestant Religion, and with
confider of it, and return an Answer. Address for
The Conimons having also address'd his the Execu- Majesty for the Execution of Pickering, and tion of Pickering,
other Popish Priests, were answer'd, That he &c. had always been tender in Matters of Blood,
which his Subje&s had no Reason to take