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32 Car. II.

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A.D.168c. that no Power on Earth could authorise a
Man

up

his Hand against the King. The Prac- As this Lord was the last Person put to tices of the Deach for this Popish, or Presbyterian Plot, it Faction to

may not be improper here, to remember fome
procure
Witnesses of the Stratagems the Fadion made use of,
of the Plot.co procure Evidence against the unhappy Suf-

ferers : And it appears that Corral, Prance, and
several more, were threatned and tortured to
make them confefs what Shaftsbury and his
Agents di&ated to them ; while other poor
neceffitous Wretches were tempted by extra-
vagant Rewards, to accuse such Persons as
were mark'd out for Deftru&ion : But when
we observe further, the Promises of Life
made to many condemned Men if they
would confefs the Plor, and that every Man
of them refused the Offer, chusing to die
rather than become false Witnesses ; when we
see Men, to whose Lives no Obje&ion could
be made but their Religion, seriously and
folemnly denying every Tittle of the Charge
in their last Moments; Can the Oaths of the
most profligate Villains, who acknowledged
the changing their Religion, receiving Sacra-
ments, and taking Oaths of Secrecy to be
with an Intention, to betray the Persons they
were engaged with, and that for Years toge-
ther, be of any Weight?

Even Burnet gives up Oates and Bedloe, as
Men whofe Credit could not be rely'd on.
And tho’ for a Time he is willing to allow
Dugdale and Turberville to be unexceptionable
Witnesses, yet we find when they come to
testify against Colledge, he makes them full as
vile as the others, and to deferve as litrle
Credit, as either Oates or Bedlce.

And

or And now

32 Car.II.

And Page 509, Burnet says,

A.D. 1680. Dugdale and Turberville, who had been the “ Witnesses upon whose Evidence Lord Stafford was condemn'd, being within a Year deceded, or ac least suspected of this Villany, I could not but reflect on what he had said to me, That he was confident I should see within a year, that the Witneles would be found to be Rogues.

It is further obfervable, That every one of the Witnesses of the Popish Plot improved daliy in their Evidence, and from some flight Knowledge of it, which they pretended to at first, became positive Witnesses against Persons they had never seen before, and of Facts which they had folemnly protested upon their Oaths they were Strangers to.

We find also, upon the great Encouragement and Carelles the first Witnesses met vith, others sprung up in all Parts of the Kingdom, pretending to make Discoveries of Plots : Many of whom were so plainly detected, that they could obtain no Credit, even in those believing Times.

It was pretended also, That this Design of murdering the King, had been on Foot for many years, and was become the Common Talk not only all over England, but almost in every Kingdom in Europe; and every Popish Prince was said to be concern'd in ir: Great Forces were agreed to be raised, and great Quantities of Arms said to be provided, and Commissions iffu'd out, and yet nothing of all this appear'd; which is incredible, if there was any Truth in the Evidence given of these mighry Preparations.

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32 Car.II.

A.D.1680 'Tis observable also, That Oates in his first

Discoveries made the Pope claim the British Dominions as his Right; and that the Duke was to be murdered, as well as the King: And yet afterwards, when he came under Shaftsbury's Management, he makes the Duke the principal Conspirator, and makes this a Handle for introducing the Bill of Exclusion; representing, that the Nation could never be safe while there was the Prospea of a Popish Succeffor.

Let any impartial Man consider these Circumstances, with those other Obje&ions the Prisoners made in their Defence, and he will be easily convinced, that all that part of the Plot relating to the Assassination of the King was entirely a Fi&ion. That the Roman-Catholicks had a Design then, and ever since the Reformation, to have introduced their Religion; and that they had more than ordinary Hopes of effe&ing it on the Duke of York's coming to the Crown, is not to be doubted : But for their conspiring the King's Death, or inviting over foreign Forces to fubdue the Kingdom, there does not seem the least Foundation. And this will further appear, when we fee Oates conviđed of Perjury by above forty Witnesses, among whom there were several Proceltants of Reputation, who could have no manner of Inducement to give that

Evidence, if it had not been true. The King's In the mean time the King made a Speech Speech to to both Houses, wherein he again put them the Parlia

in mind of granting a Sapply to enable him to perform his Alliances, as well as for the Prefervation of Tangier ; assuring them, That he was ready to concur with them in any Measures for the Security of the Protestant

ment.

32 Car. II.

tisfied

Religion, that might consist with preserving 4.D.1680 the Succeflion of the Crown in its due and legal Course of Descent.

The Commons, instead of considering the The ComKing's Speech, immediately resolved them- mons Theme selves into a Grand Committee, how to fe-themselves cure the Kingdom against Popery and Arbi

Atill dissa. crary Power ; and, after some Debate, voted, That one Means to suppress Popery was, to bring in a Bill to banish all the confiderable Papiis in the Kingdom; and came to this further Resolution, That as long as the Papifts had any Hopes of the Duke of York's succeeding to the Crown, the King's Person, the Protestant Religion, and the Lives, Liberties, and Properties of all his Majesty's Proteftanc Subjects were in apparent Danger of being destroyed; and thereupon resolved, That a Bill be brought in for the Association An Afloof all his Majesty's Protestant Subje&s, for ciation the Safety of his Majesty's Person, the De- against the fence of the Protestant Religion, and the Pre- Duke of servation of his Majesty's Protestant Subjeđs, Tork's Ac.

cellion ; and against all Invasions and Oppositions, and for the preventing the Duke of York, or any other Papist, from fucceeding to the Crown.

Two Days after, they resolved, That a With feBill be brought in to secure the frequent veral other

. Meetings of Parliaments; another, That the Judges hold their Places quam diu se bene gefJerint ; and a third, making every illegal Exađion of Money on the Subjeđ, High-Treason: After which they came to consider the King's Speech, and drew

up an Address in An Addreso Antwer to it ; wherein they again entreat his neithe Majesty to consent to a Bill to disable the pals them. Duke of York to inherit the Crown; to a Bill for the Association of his Protestans Subje&s,

A.D.1680. with such other Articles as are contained in za Car. It. the abovelaid Resolutions : Which Requests

being granted, they tell his Majesty they fhall be ready to affitt him in the Preservation of Tangier, and fitting our such a Fleet as might maintain the Sovereignty of the Seas,

and defend the Nation. The King's About a Fortnight after, viz, the seventh Answer. of January, the King fent the Commons a

Message in Writing by Sir William Temple, in Answer to this Address; wherein he tells them, That he was forry to find their Thoughts so wholly fixed upon the Bill of Exclusion, as to determine that all other Re. medies for suppressing Popery would be ineffe&ual; That his Majesty was confirmed in his Opinion against that Bill by the House of Lords, who reje&ted it; and therefore recommended to them the Consideration of other Means for the Preservation of the Proteftant Religion.

The Commons, on the Receipt of this Mersage, refolved, That until a Bill was passed for excluding the Duke of York, they could not give any Supply, without Danger to his Perfon, extreme Hazard of the Protestant Religion, and Unfaithfulness to those who entrusted them; and that they who advised the last Message, were Promoters of Popery, and

Enemies to the King and Kingdom; and voted They ad- an Address to his Majesty, to remove from dress the all Offices of Honour and Profit, and from King to

his Prefence and Council for ever, George alter his Ministry. Earl of Halifax, Lawrence Hyde, Efq; Henry

Marquis of Worcester, Henry Earl of Clarendon,
and Lewis Earl of Feversham, whom they su-
Spected of giving his Majesty that Advice.
They proceeded also to the following extra-

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