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THE

HISTORY OF ENGLAND

UNDER THE

HOUSE OF STUART,

INCLUDING THE COMMONWEALTH.

[A.D. 1603—1688.]

PART I.

JAMES 1.-CHARLES I.

UNDER THE SUPERINTENDENCE OF THE SOCIETY FOR THE DIFFUSION OF

USEFUL KNOWLEDGE.

- LONDON: .
BALDWIN AND CRADOCK, PATERNOSTER ROW,

1840.

LIB

ORL

LONDON:
Printed by Willian Clowes and Sons,

Stamford Street.

PRE FACE.

The condition of England under the House of Stuart exhibits that point in our progress as a nation, toward which all the previous changes in English history converged, and from which the leading events of subsequent times have derived their complexion. If well understood it leaves little to be explained in relation either to the past or the present. The interval from 1603 to 1688 was marked by the appearance of great men, by great events, and above all by a protracted struggle in the cause of great principles. It has been my aim that the present publication should not be deficient in any matter properly belonging to a complete history of that period; but my special attention has been directed to the history of political and religious parties, and to the progress of affairs as affecting the settlement of order, law, and liberty at the Revolution. It is now more than ten years since I began the study of this subject with a view to authorship. In committing the result of my labour to the · judgment of the public, I should have less anxiety if I could

feel as satisfied with the execution of the work, as with the extent of my efforts to acquaint myself with the best sources of information, and the sincerity of my solicitude to make a candid and a wise use of the knowledge thus obtained. No. attempt has been made to conceal my own views with respect to the great questions at issue in those times; but in defending principles which I believe to be of the greatest importance to our social welfare, I have been anxious to avoid all unfairness toward the parties by whom those principles have been assailed. In this spirit my labour has been prosecuted, -not with the expecta

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tion of giving entire satisfaction to thorough partisans of any class, but in the hope of producing a work which might contribute, however imperfectly, toward a more general diffusion of sound views with regard to the great facts in our national history.

Robert VAUGHAN.

Notting Hill, May 30, 1840.

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