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London : Printed for R. Clavel, at the Peacock, in St. Paul's Church-yard, 1692.
May 25th, 1692. Let this be printed, Nottingham. Quarto, containing twenty Pages.
among us, is a blessing which we cannot sufficiently understand, unless we consider the woeful desolation it hath made in all neighbouring nations: nor are they at all sensible how much they owe to God, and their majesties, for keeping us in peace, who give the least encouragement to this intended descent, which must turn our land into an Aceldama, and will make such woeful havock of our lives and fortunes, while one party fights for safety, and the other for revenge, that no age can parallel the horrid consequences of such a civil war as this will prove. And, if papists only (blinded by zeal for their religion, and blown up with hopes of absolute empire) encouraged this bloody design, it would be no wonder, and could have no success, considering the general aversion of the people to them, and the fresh instances of their insolence and cruelty,
But alas ! it appears that many, who call themselves Protestants, are engaged in this fatal conspiracy against their religion, and their native country; which is so prodigious and amazing, that a man would wonder who hath bewitched these foolish Galatians to push on their own and the church's ruin: and every one must be inquisitive into the specious pretences by which these men are induced to become their own executioners.
Now the pretended motives are these:
2. Delivering us from the oppressions we suffer under the present, king.
3. Settling the government upon its old basis.
Now it becomes every true English Protestant to examine these pretences very well, before he venture on a thing of so evil appearance and dangerous consequence, as is the joining with these invaders.
• Vide the 68th article in the catalogue of pamphlets.
First, It is pretended, the late king was unjustly deprived of his birth-right by his subjects, who, by nature and oaths, were bound to defend him in the possession of it: and, now that he comes to demand his own, all that ever were his subjects must either assist, or at least not oppose him.
But let it be considered, that all the late king's sufferings were owing to, and caused by the counsels of his Popish priests, and the bigots of that persuasion : protestants were not the aggressors; he might have kept his possession to this day undisturbed, if he had not made such open and bold attempts upon our laws, our religion, and properties; so that he was the first and only cause of his own sufferings: and why should millions be involved in blood and ruin, who are perfectly innocent of doing this injury? No free nation did ever hear more or greater injuries, or endure such violences so long, or so patiently as we did : and, when some stop was to be put to the final ruin of our liberties and religion, it was done at first by petitions and complaints; and, when they were despised, none but defensive arms were taken up by some few, and by a foreign prince, only to cover their heads, while the grievances were fairly redressed ; not to take away his rights, but to secure our
Nor did the Prince of Orange, or these gentlemen, devest or deprive him of his throne, but owned his right by offering a treaty, during the continuance of which he disbanded his army, dissolved his government, and, as much as in him lay, attempted to desert the throne, and seek aids from an enemy's country, which might secure him against redressing any grievances, and enable him to be revenged upon the injured complainers. We did not make the throne vacant; but the late archbishop, and other peers at Guildhall, believed he had left it void, or else they would not, without his consent, have seized on the administration of govern. ment, secured his chancellor, taken possession of the Tower, and offered the exercise of the supreme power to the Prince of Orange. He left us in anarchy, and we provided for ourselves in the best manner such a juncture would allow. I will not inquire now, whether these subjects, who are so zealous for his return, were not bound to do more than they did, to keep him in his throne, while he had it; their conscience then permitted them to look on, and let him sink, while his 'security had been far more easily compassed : but they, who have now these unseasonable
of their old loyalty, must consider, that a man may leave his right when he pleaseth, but may not take it again at his pleasure, especially not by force, and this most especially as to sovereign power. Somebody must govern, when he would not; the next undoubted heir, in an hereditary monarchy, must; and whoever doth govern in chief in this nation must be king, by our constitution, and must have power sufficient to protect himself and the nation against all their enemies; and that cannot be without swearing new allegiance. Now, when a king and queen are declared, submitted to, and owned by oaths, and all other methods required in such case, the king is not at liberty to give up his own power, and the protection of us, nor are the people free to join with him that deserted them, or to venture their necks, or their country's ruin, to restore him. I dare say, that the French king will not grant, that the citizens of those cities, who were subjects to Spain, or the emperor, and bound by oath to those princes (but have now submitted to him, and sworn new allegiance) are obliged to venture their lives and fortunes, by vertue of their old oaths, to restore those cities to their former masters ; doubtless, he would solve their scruples with a halter, if he found they attempted it. Besides, the injuries, as they are called, done to the late king by his own acts, if they were capable of reparation, must not be repaired with the injuring, yea, ruining many thousand innocent persons, who must unavoidably lose their lives, and be undone in their estates by his returning by force. The present king and his army are bound by oaths, duty, and interest, to oppose him; so are all now protected by him, and who have sworn allegiance to him; and it is certain, all that are not perjured hypocrites will do so; and then, what Englishman's bowels must not bleed to consider what murders, burning, plundering, and destruction he brings upon bis native country, who encourages the aggressors ? If he has any kindness for us, whom he calls his subjects, he would rather sit quietly under his single injuries, than wish, or, however, attempt to be restored by blood and an universal ruin; and, if he has no pity for us, why should we be so concerned for him, as to sacrifice our lives and fortunes to his revenge? He went away, while a treaty was on foot, and nothing but a treaty can restore him fairly; which he never yet offered. We did not force him to go away in disguise, and, if he will force himself upon us again, by French dragoons and Irish cut-throats, we may and must oppose him; for our allegiance is now transferred to another. Finally, there is no injury to any but himself, and those who run into voluntary exile with him, by his being out of the possession; the monarchy, the law, the church, and property are all in better estate, than in his time; and all these, with innumerable private persons, must be irreparably injured by his return in an hostile manner. So that there can be no reason to redress the sufferings, he owes to his own faults, by so many publick. and private injuries. If it be pleaded, that he, who was born to a kingdom, really wants subsistence, I reply, that, if he would seek the peace of Christendom, and of his late subjects, he might, by a fair treaty set on foot, not only restore the exiles, but have a sufficient and honourable maintenance from this government; but, while the war, he makes upon it, puts us to so great expence, he cannot expect it, nor imagine we should give him a supply to enable him to ruin us.
The second pretence, why we should assist towards his restoration, is, to deliver ourselves from the oppression we suffer under the present king : and, to set off this with a better gloss, the late reign is magnified by the jesuits and their tools, and this blacken, ed; freedom from taxes then is made a rare instance of his gentleness, and the present impositions heightened, with all the rheto
rick imaginable, to represent this king as an oppressor. The flourishing of trade then is extolled, the decay of it now odiously insinuated, and great hopes are given of golden days, upon the return of James the Just; he is to make us all happy.
Now, to answer this, there is no need to make a satyr on that reign, or a panegyrick on this; that is so well remembered, and this so fully known, that all unprejudiced people see on which side the truth lies. But it is great pity they, who have the wit to invent or urge this plea, have not a memory to remind them, that, none complained more of the danger of law and religion, of our lives and fortunes in that reign, than many who have this high opinion of it now; the cruel severities in the west, the high commission, turning out of office all good protestants, attempting to reverse all the penal laws, putting unqualified men into all places of trust, profit, and power, excluding the fellows of Magdalen, and putting in papists, with the imprisonment and trial of the bishops, were thought oppressions then ; but now all these are buried in oblivion, and those taxes which the late king, and his ally of France, with their abettors, alone make necessary to this frugal prince, these are our only grievance, and this king's unpardonable crime. The late king had one tax, and might, yea, would have had more for the glorious design of enslaving his subjects, if he could have got a parliament to his purpose, which he vigorously endeavoured ; and it was, because he was sure he must satisfy his people in their just complaints, whenever he asked a supply, that he durst not ask it of a freely chosen parliament; yet then we were in peace with all nations, and now he hath intangled us in a war with the worst enemy in Europe. Assessments then were not needed, but to hasten our ruin; now they are absolutely necessary to our safety, and made so by him, and his complaining friends. Yet still what grievances are these taxes, in comparison of what is laid on the French slaves, into whose condition we were intended to be brought? There is a vast difference between losing our property for ever, and paying some part of our profits to secure the rest, and our inheritances to our posterity, as well as ourselves. Besides, should we not leap out of the frying-pan, into the fire, if, to avoid tolerable payments, we should rashly bring a fatal war to our doors, that must last till more than one half of the nation be destroyed, and the rest utterly, and almost irrecoverably, impoverished? This, I am sure, is voluntarily to change our whips for scorpions. We have paid as much formerly for assisting France to ruin Europe, and maintain vice at home, as now serves to deliver Europe, and secure our native country and religion, from utter destruction: nor are the sums considerable, reckoning the abatement of chimney-money, which we have paid to this government; no country in Europe bath paid so little in proportion to our wealth, these last three years of war : and if the late king return, England must pay all the sums borrowed of France, to maintain him abroad, to keep Ireland, and to discharge the forces, that come to thrust him on us, and must stay to complete the happy design of setting up popery and slavery, the
natural consequences of his restoration; and it is well, if arrears of chimney-money, and other publick monies, be not called for, to carry on so glorious a work : so that, if England rebel against the present king, to avoid the burdens now upon them, they expose themselves to ten times greater taxes for many years, and it can end in nothing but the utter impoverishing of the whole nation, especially, the protestant part of it, who, by their poverty will become a more easy prey. As for trade, the decay of it began in the Jate king's time, and it is the war wbich he and France hath engage ed us in, that still keeps it at a low ebb; so that for the late king's friends to expose the present government, for this, is like a conjurer's complaining of the storms he raises. That ingenious history of Bishop King's, of the estate of the protestants in Ireland, under King James, makes it out, that the late king feared and hated the increase of trade, which made him use all means to hinder it; and all the world sees, that no absolute monarch, as he affects to be, likes that his subjects should grow rich by trade. But our present king, so soon as he can have peace, will make it his first care to promote trade here, as he did in the country he came from; and, even in the difficult times he had, trade hath been a great part of his and his parliament's care. Finally, if men can remember the times, that are so lately past, when law and right was only the king's pleasure, dictated by mercenary judges; when no party but the papists flourished; when a general consternation had stopped all business, they cannot hope to be happy by his return, who caused all these miseries : and they must expect, now he hath more perfectly learned the French methods, of making a king the greatest of monarchs, by making his subjects the vilest of slaves, that he will practise it with greater industry and application than ever, to put it eternally out of his subjects power, to protect themselves again : for oppressing his people, which was but expedient before, will now be thought absolutely necessary. So that nothing can be more improbable, not to say impossible, than for England to be happy under him, that attempted to make her miserable without any provocation, and must return with the same principles and designs, the same counsellors and interests he had before, and with all the addition that revenge, hatred, and fear can make to an angry and implacable mind. But it may be said, his dear-bought experience of the ill success of these methods will make him rule more moderately, if he be restored : to which I reply, Cælum, non animum mutat. The fore-cited book of Bishop King's demonstrates, that, after he had lost England and Scotland, and a great part of Ireland, upon his return bither from France, he was more arbitrary and hard to his protestant obedient subjects than ever he had been before, even though it was against his visible interest, and tended to disa gúst all the protestants, who would have served him there. His declaring liimself papist at first here, and all his actions since, shew that he prefers his will, and an obstinate pursuing his own methods, far above his true interest; whence it follows, that we vainly expect from one of his temper, that either his past experience, or his