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lawyers. The Scotch chancellor explained the business to them in a characteristic speech. He began by assuring “ Master Maynard and Master Whitelock” of the great opinion which he and his brethren had of their worth and abilities, else that rheeting would not have been desired. “ You ken vary weel,” said he (as Whitelock reports his words), “ that Lieutenant-General Cromwell is no friend of ours ; and since the advance of our army into England, he hath used all underhand and cunning means to take off from our honor and merit of this kingdom; an evil requital of all our hazards and services. But so it is; and we are nevertheless fully satisfied of the affections and gratitude of the gude people of this nation in the general. It is thought requisite for us, and for the carrying on the cause of the twa kingdoms, that this obstacle or remora may be removed out of the way, whom, we foresee, will otherwise be no small impediment to us and the gude design we have undertaken. He not only is no friend to us and to the government of our church, but he is also no wellwisher to his excellency, whom you and we all have cause to love and honor : and if he be permitted to go on his ways, it may, I fear, endanger the whole business ; therefore we are to advise of some course to be taken for the prevention of that mischief. You ken vary weel the accord twixt the twa kingdoms, and the union by the solemn

Now you

league and covenant; and if any be an incendiary between the twa nations, how he is to be proceeded against. Now the matter is, wherein we desire your opinions, what you tak the meaning of this word incendiary to be, and whether LieutenantGeneral Cromwell be not sic an incendiary as is meant thereby, and whilk way wud be best to tak to proceed against him, if he be proved to be sic an incendiary, and that will clip his wings from soaring to the prejudice of our cause. may ken that by our law in Scotland we clepe him an incendiary wha kindleth coals of contention, and raises differences in the state to the public damage, and he is tanquam publicus hostis patriæ. Whether your law be the same or not, you ken best wha are mickle learned therein : and, therefore, with the favor of his excellency we desire your judgments in these points."*

Whitelock and Maynard were men of whom Lord Clarendon, who was intimate with them before the rebellion, has said, that though they bowed their knees to Baal, and so swerved from their allegiance, it was with less rancor and malice than other men. They never led, but followed, and were rather carried away with the torrent than swam with the stream, and failed through those infirmities which less than a general defection and a prosperous rebellion could never have [* Whitelock, p. 116, ed. 1732.]

discovered.” Such men were not likely to advise bold measures, in which they might be called upon to bear a part. They admitted the meaning of the word incendiary as defined by the Scotch chancel. lor, and as it stood in the covenant; but they required proofs of particular words or actions tending to kindle the fire of contention: they themselves had heard of none, and till the Scotch commissioners could collect such, they were of opinion that the business had better be deferred. And they spoke of the influence and favor which the person in question possessed. “I take LieutenantGeneral Cromwell,” said Whitelock, “to be a gentleman of quick and subtle parts, and one who hath, especially of late, gained no small interest in the house of commons; nor is he wanting of friends in the house of peers, nor of abilities in himself to manage his own part or defence to the best advantage."* Hollis, Stapleton, and some others, related certain acts and sayings of Cromwell which they considered such proofs as the law required, and they were for proceeding boldly with the design. But the Scotch, who, at that time, had less at stake than the leaders of the English presbyterians, chose the wary part; and Essex was always incapable of doing either good or evil, except as a tool in the hands of others. Cromwell was too able a politician not to have

[* Whitelock, p. 117, ed. 1732.]

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agents at all times in the enemy's quarters. Some who were present at this meeting were false brethren." Whitelock and Maynard were liked by him the better for the opinion they had given ; the attack which they had averted might easily have put an end to his career of advancement : a sense of the danger which he had escaped quickened his own measures, and with the co-operation of his friends, and others with whom he then acted, the self-denying ordinance was brought forward, an act which may justly be considered as the masterpiece of his hypocritical policy. To effect this the alarm was first sounded by the " drum ecclesiastic;" the pulpits were manned on one of the appointed fast days, and the topic which the London preachers everywhere insisted on, was the reproach to which parliament was liable for the great emoluments which its members secured to themselves by the civil or military offices which they held; the necessity of removing this reproach, and of praying that God would take his own work into his own hand, and inspire other instruments to perfect what was begun, if those he had already employed were not worthy to bring so glorious a design to a conclusion. Parliament : met the next day, and Sir Harry Vane (who, though a thorough fanatic in his notions, could not have acted more hypocritically if he had been pure knave) told them that if ever God had appeared to

them, it was in the exercise of yesterday ; he was credibly informed that the same lamentations and discourses as the godly preachers had made before them, had been made in all other churches ; and this could only have proceeded from the immediate spirit of God. He then offered to resign an office which he himself held. Cromwell took up the strain ; desired that he might lay down his commission, enlarged upon the vices which were got into the army, “the profaneness and impiety, and absence of all religion, drinking, gaming, and all manner of license and laziness." Till the whole army were new modelled, he said, and governed under a stricter discipline, they must not expect any notable success; and he desired the parliament not to be terrified with an imagination that if the highest offices were vacant, they should not be able to fill them with fit men, for, besides that it was not good to put so much trust in any arm of flesh as to think such a cause depended upon any one man,

he took upon himself to assure them they had officers in their army who were fit to be generals in any enterprise in Christendom. The self-denying ordinance* was brought in, and after

• Mr. Oliver Cromwell endeavors to refute Lord Clarendon's account of the origin of this ordinance. His arguments are, that in Cromwell's speech as given by Rushworth there is no allusion to the fast sermons of the preceding day, and that in fact the fast was not appointed till after the ordinance was past. That this gentleman should on all occasions be desirous of

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