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This Thursday, 8th March, 1648-9, they are voting and debating in a thin House, hardly above 60 there, Whether Duke Hamil. ton, Earl Holland, Lords Capel, Goring, and Sir John Owen, our old friend Colonel Owen' of Nottingham Castle, Jenner and Ashe's old friend,*—are to die or to live ?
They have been tried in a new High Court of Justice, and all found guilty of treason, of levying war against the Supreme Authority of this Nation. Shall they be executed; shall they be respited ? The House by small Majorities decides against the first three ; decides in favor of the last; and as to Goring, the votes are equal,--the balance-tongue trembles, “Life or Death !” Speaker Lenthall says, Life.t
Meanwhile, small private matters also must be attended to.
For my very worthy Friend, Richard Mayor, Esquire: These.
London,' sth March, 1648.
Yours I have received; and have given farther instructions to this Bearer, Mr. Stapylton, to treat with you about the business in agitation between your Daughter and my Son.
I am engagedt- to you for all your civilities and respects already manifested. I trust there will be a right understanding between üs, and a good conclusion ; and though I cannot particularly remember the things spoken of at Farnham, to which your Letter seems to refer me, yet I doubt not but I have sent the offer of such things now as will give mutual satisfaction to us both. My attendance upon public affairs will not give me leave to come down unto you myself; I have sent unto you this Gentleman with my mind.
I salute Mrs. Mayor, though unknown, with the rest of your Family. I commit you, with the progress of the Business, to the Lord ; and rest,
On the morrow morning, poor versatile Hamilton, poor versatile Holland, with the Lord Capel who the first of all in this Par
* Letter LIII., p. 315.
† Commons Journals, vi., 159.
liament rose to complain of Grievances, meet their death in Palaceyard. The High Court was still sitting in Westminster Hall as they passed through ‘from Sir Robert Cotton's house. Hamilton lingered a little, or seemed to linger, in the Hall; still hopeful of reprieve and fine of 100,0001. : but the Earl of Denbigh, his brother-in-law, a Member of the Council of State, stept up to him ; whispered in his ear; the
Duke walked on. That is the end of all his diplomacies; his Scotch Army of Forty-thou. sand, his painful ridings to Uttoxeter, and to many other places, have all issued here. The Earl of Lanark will now be Duke of Hamilton in Scotland : may a better fate await him !
The once gay Earl of Holland has been converted' some days ago, as it were for the
Earl ! With regard to my Lord Capel again, who followed last in order, he behaved, says Bulstrode, much after the manner of a stout Roman. He had no Minister with him, nor showed any sense of death approaching ; but carried himself all the time he was upon the scaffold with that boldness and resolution as was to be admired. He wore a sad-colored suit, his hat cocked up, and his cloak thrown under one arm : he looked towards the people at his first coming up, and
put off his hat in manner of a salute ; he had a little discourse with some gentlemen, and passed up and down in a care. less posture.
Thus died Lord Capel, the first who complained of Grievances : in seven years time there are such changes for a man; and the first acts of his Drama little know what the last will be !
This new High Court of Justice is one of some Seven or Eight that sat in those years, and were greatly complained of by Constitutional persons. Nobody ever said that they decided contrary to evidence; but they were not the regular Judges. They took the Parliament's law as good, without consulting Fleta and Bracton about it. They consisted of learned Sergeants and other weighty persons nominated by the Parliament, usually in good numbers, for the occasion.
Some weeks hence, drunken Poyer of Pembroke and the confused Welsh Colonels are tried by Court Martial ; Poyer, Powel,
Whitlocke, p. 380 (the first of the two pages 380 which there are).
Laughern are found to merit death. Death however shall be executed only upon one of them ; let the other two be pardoned : let them draw lots which two. • In two of the lots was written, Life given by God; the third lot was a blank. The Prisoners were not willing to draw their own destiny ; but a child drew the lots, and gave them : and the lot fell to Colonel Poyer to die.'* He was shot in Covent Garden ; died like a soldier, poor confused Welshman; and so ended.
And with these executions, the chief Delinquents are now got punished. The Parliament lays up its axe again; willing to pardon the smaller multitude, if they will keep quiet henceforth.
For my worthy Friend, Dr. Love, Master of Benet College, Cambridge:'
London,' 14th March, 1643. SIR,
I understand one Mrs. Nutting is a suitor unto you, on the right of her Son, about the renewing of a Lease which holds of your College. The old interest I have had makes me presume upon your favor. I desire nothing but what is just; leaving that to your judgment; and beyond which I neither now nor at any time shall move. If I do, denial shall be most welcome and accepted by,
OLIVER CROMWELL.f This is not the Christopher Love who preached at Uxbridge, during the Treaty there in 1644; who is now a minister in London, and may again come before us ; this is a Cambridge · Dr. Love,' of whom I know nothing. Oliver, as we may gather, had befriended him, during the reform of that University in 1644. Probably in Baker's Manuscripts it might be ascertained in what year he graduated, where he was born, where buried; but nothing substantial is ever likely to be known of him,-or is indeed
* Whitlocke, 21 April, 1649.
† Lansdown Mss., 1236, fol. 83.
necessary to be known. “Mrs. Nutting' and he were evidently children of Adam, breathing the vital air along with Oliver Cromwell; and Oliver, on occasion, endeavored to promote justice and kindness between them; and they remain two ó shadows of small Names.'
Yesterday, Tuesday, 13th March, there was question in the Council of State about "modelling of the forces that are to go to Ireland ;' and a suggestion was made, by Fairfax probably, who had the modelling to do, that they would model much better if they knew first under what Commander they were to go. It is thought Lieutenant-General Cromwell will be the man.
On which same evening, furthermore, one discerns in a faint but an authentic manner, certain dim gentlemen of the highest authority, young Sir Harry Vane to appearance one of them, repairing to the lodging of one Mr. Milton, “a small house in Holborn which opens backwards into Lincoln's Inn Field ;' to put an official question to him there ! Not a doubt of it they saw Mr. John this evening. In the official Book this yet stands legible :
• Die Martis, 13° Martii 1648.' "That it is referred to the same Committee,' Whitlocke, Vane, Lord Lisle, Earl of Denbigh, Harry Marten, Mr. Lisle, or any two of them, to speak with Mr. Milton, to know, Whether he will be employed as Secretary for the Foreign Languages ? and to report to the Council.'t í ! have authority to say that Mr. Milton, thus unexpectedly applied to, consents; is formally appointed on Tuesday next; makes his proof-shot, “ to the Senate of Hamburgh,’about a week hence ;and gives, and continues to give, great satisfaction to that Council, to me, and to the whole Nation now, and to all Nations ! Such romance lies in the State-Paper Office.
Here, however, is another Letter on the Hursley Business, of the same date as Letter LX. ; which must also be read. I do not expect many readers to take the trouble of representing before
* Order-Book of the Council of State (in the State-paper Office), i., 86. | Ibid. ; Todd's Life of Milton (London, 1826), pp. 96, 108–123.
Senatus Populusque Anglicanus Amplissimo Civitatis Hamburgensis Senatui, Salutem (in Milton's Litere Senatus Anglicani, this first Letter to the Hamburgers is not given).
their minds the clear condition of Mr. Ludlow's lease,' of the 2501.' «the 1501.' &c., in this abstruse affair : but such as please to do so will find it all very straight at last. We observe Mr. Mayor has a decided preference for my ould land ;' land that I inherited, or bought by common contract, instead of getting it from Parliament for Public Services ! In fact, Mr. Mayor seems somewhat of a sharp man : but neither has he a dull man to deal with—though a much bigger one.
'For my worthy Friend, Richard Mayor, Esquire, at Hursley: These:
*London,' 14th March, 1648.
I received your Paper by the hands of Mr. Stapylton. I desire your leave to return my dissatisfaction therewith. I shall not need to premise how much I have desired (I hope upon the best grounds) to match with you. The same desire continues in me, if Providence see it fit. But I may not be so much wanting to myself nor family as not to have some equality of consideration towards it.*
I have two young Daughters to bestow, if God give them life and opportunity. According to your Offer, I have nothing for them; nothing at all in hand. If my son die, what consideration is there to me? And yet a jointure parted with on my side.' If she die, there is on your side’ little money parted with ;'even if you have an heir male, • there is' but 3,0001., "and’ without time ascertained.t
As for these things, indeed,' I doubt not but, by one interview between you and myself, they might be accommodated to mutual satisfaction; and in relation to these, I think we should hardly part, or have many words, so much do I desire a closure with you. But to deal freely with you: the settling of the Manor of Hursley, as you propose it, sticks so much with me, that either I understand you not, or else it much fails my expectation. As you offer it, there is 400l. per annum charged upon it. For the 1501. to your Lady, for her life, as a jointure, I stick not at that: but the 2501. per annum until Mr. Ludlow's Lease expires, the tenor whereof I know not, and so much of the 2501. per annum as ex ceeds that Lease in annual value for some time also after the expiration
*•iť is not the family, but the match.
† See Letter XXXVI., p. 247.