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into a Jewish Sabbath. They sought for principles of jurisprudence in the Mosaic law, and for precedents to guide their ordinary conduct in the books of Judges and Kings. Their thoughts and discourse ran much on acts which were assuredly not recorded as examples for our in...itation. The prophet who hewed in pieces a captive king, the rebel general who gave the blood of a queen to the dogs, the matron who, in defiance of plighted faith, and of the laws of eastern hospitality, drove the nail into the brain of the fugitive ally who had just fed at her board, and who was sleeping under the shadow of her tent, were proposed as models to Christians suffering under the tyranny of iPrinces and prelates. Morals and manners were subjected to a code resembling that of the synagogue, when the synagogue was in its worst state. The dress, the deportment, the language, the studies, the amusements of the rigid sect were regulated on principles resembling those of the Pharisees who, proud of their washed hands and broad phylacteries, taunted the Redeemer as a Sabbath-breaker and a wine-bibber. It was a sin to hang garlands on a Maypole, to drink a friend's health, to fly a hawk, to hunt a stag, to play at chess, to wear lovelocks, to put starch into a ruff, to touch the virginals, to read the Fairy Queen. Rules such as these, rules which would have appeared insupportable to the free and joyous spirit of Luther, and contemptible to the serene and philosophical intellect of Zwingle, threw over all life a more than monastic gloom. The learning and eloquence by which the great Reformers had been eminently distinguished, and to which they had been, in no small measure, indebted for their success, were regarded by the new school of Protestants with suspicion, if not with aversion. Some precisians had scruples about teaching the Latin grammar because the names of Mars, Bacchus, and Apollo occurred in it. The fine arts were all but proscribed. The solemn peal of the organ was superstitious. The light music of Ben Jonson's masques was dissolute. Half the fine paintings in England were idolatrous, and the other half indecent. The extreme Puritan was at once known from other men by his gait, his garb, his lank hair, the sour solemnity of his face, the upturned white of his eyes, the nasal twang with which he spoke, and above all, by his peculiar dialect. He employed, on every occasion, the imagery and style of Scripture. Hebraisms violently introduced into the English language, and metaphors borrowed from the boldest lyric poetry of a remote age and country, and applied to the common concerns of English life, were the most striking peculiarities of this cant, which moved, not without cause, the derision both of prelatists and libertines. Thus the political and religious schism which had originated in the sixteenth century was, during the first quarter of the seventeenth century, constantly widening. Theories tending to Turkish despotism were in fashion at Whitehall. Theories tending to republicanism were in favor with a large portion of the House of Commons. The violent prelatists who were, to a man, zealous for prerogative, and the violent Puritans who were, to a man, zealous for the privileges of parliament, regarded each other with animosity more intense than that which, in the preceding generation, had existed between Catholics and Protestants. While the minds of men were in this state, the country, after a peace of many years, at length engaged in a war which required strenuous exertions. This war hastened the approach of the great constitutional crisis. It was necessary that the king should have a large military force. He could not have such a force without money. He could not legally raise money without the consent of parliament. It followed, therefore, that he must either administer the government in conformity with the sense of the House of Commons, or must venture on such a violation of the fundamental laws of the land, as had been unknown during several centuries. The Plantagenets and the Tudors had, it is true, occasionally supplied a deficiency in their revenue by a benevolence or a forced loan ; but these expedients were always of a temporary nature. To meet the regular charge of a long war by regular taxation, imposed without the consent of the estates of the realm, was a course which Henry the Eighth himself would not have dared to take. It seemed, therefore, that the decisive hour was approaching, and that the English parliament would soon either share the fate of the senates of the Continent, or obtain supreme ascendency in the state. Just at this conjuncture James died. Charles the First succeeded to the throne. He had received from nature a far better understanding, a far stronger will, and a far keener and firmer temper than his father's. He had inherited his father's political theories, and was much more disposed than his father to carry them into practice. He was, like his father, a zealous Episcopalian. He was, moreover, what his father had never been, a zealous Arminian, and, though no Papist, liked a Papist much better than a Puritan. It would be unjust to deny that Charles had some of the qualities of a good, and even of a great, prince. He wrote and spoke, not, like his father, with the exactness of a professor, but after the fashion of intelligent and well-educated gentlemen. His taste in literature and art was excellent, his manner dignified, though not gracious, his domestic life without blemish. Faithlessness was the chief cause of his disasters, and is the chief stain on his memory. He was, in truth, impelled by an incurable propensity to dark and crooked ways. It may seem strange that his conscience, which, on occasions of little moment, was sufficiently sensitive, should never have reproached him with this great vice. But there is reason to believe that he was perfidious, not only from constitution and from habit, but also on principle. He seems to have learned from the theologians whom he most esteemed, that between him and his subjects there could be nothing of the nature of mutual contract; that he could not, even if he would, divest himself of his despotic authority; and that, in every promise which he made, there was an implied reservation that such promise might be broken in case of necessity, and that of the necessity he was the sole judge. And now began that hazardous game on which were staked the destinies of the English people. It was played, on the side of the House of Commons, with keenness, but with admirable dexterity, coolness, and perseverance. Great statesmen, who looked far behind them and far before them, were at the head of that assembly. They were resolved to place the king in such a situation that he must either conduct the administration in conformity with the wishes of his parliament, or make outrageous attacks on the most sacred principles of the constitution. They accordingly doled out supplies to him very sparingly. He found that he must govern either in harmony with the House of Commons, or in defiance of all law. His choice was soon made. He dissolved his first parliament, and levied taxes by his own authority. He convoked a second parliament, and found it more intractable than the first. He again resorted to the expedient of dissolution, raised fresh taxes without any show of legal right, and threw the chiefs of the opposition into prison. At the same time, a new grievance, which the peculiar feelings and habits of the English nation made insupportably painful, and which seemed to all discerning men to be of fearful augury, excited general discontent and alarm. Companies of soldiers were billetted on the people; and martial law was, in some places, substituted for the ancient jurisprudence of the realm. The king called a third parliament, and soon perceived that the opposition was stronger and fiercer than ever. He now determined on a change of tactics. Instead of opposing an inflexible resistance to the demands of the Commons, he, after much altercation and many evasions, agreed to a compromise which, if he had faithfully adhered to it, would have averted a long series of calamities. The parliament granted an ample supply. The king ratified, in the most solemn manner, that celebrated law which is known by the name of the Petition of Right, and which is the second great charter of the liberties of England. By ratifying that law, he bound himself never again to raise money without the consent of the Houses, never again to imprison any person, except in due course of law, and never again to subject his people to the jurisdiction of courts martial. The day on which the royal sanction was, after many delays, solemnly given to this great act, was a day of joy and hope. The Commons, who crowded the bar of the House of Lords, broke forth into loud acclamations as soon as the clerk had pronounced the ancient form of words by which our princes have, during many ages, signified their assent to the wishes of the estates of the realm. Those acclamations were reëchoed by the voice of the capital and of the nation; but, within three weeks, it became manifest that Charles had no intention of observing the compact into which he had entered. The supply given by the representatives of the nation was collected. The promise by which that supply had been obtained was broken. A violent contest followed. The parliament was dissolved with every mark of royal displeasure. Some of the most distinguished members were imprisoned; and one of them, Sir John Eliot, after years of suffering, died in confinement. Charles, however, could not venture to raise, by his own authority, taxes sufficient for carrying on war. He accordingly hastened to make peace with his neighbors, and thenceforth gave his whole mind to British politics. Now commenced a new era. Many English kings had occasionally committed unconstitutional acts; but none had ever systematically attempted to make himself a despot, and to reduce the parliament to a nullity. Such was the end which Charles distinctly proposed to himself. From March, 1629, to April, 1640, the Houses were not convoked. Never, in our history, had there been an interval of eleven years between parliament and parliament. Only once had there been an interval of even half that length. This fact alone is suf. ficient to refute those who represent Charles as having merely trodden in the footsteps of the Plantagenets and Tudors. It is proved, by the testimony of the king's most strenuous supporters, that, during this part of his reign, the provisions of the Petition of Right were violated by him, not occasionally, but constantly, and on system; that a large part of the revenue was raised without any legal authority; and that persons obnoxious to the government languished for years in prison, without being ever called upon to plead before any tribunal. For these things, history must hold the king himself chiefly responsible. From the time of his third parliament, he was his own prime minister. Several persons, however, whose temper and talents were suited to his purposes, were at the head of different departments of the administration. Thomas Wentworth, successively created Lord Wentworth and Earl of Strafford, a man of great abilities, eloquence, and courage, but of a cruel and imperious nature, was the coun sellor most trusted in political and military affairs. He had been one of the most distinguished members of the opposition, and felt towards those whom he had deserted that peculiar malignity which has, in all ages, been characteristic of apostates. He perfectly understood the feelings, the resources, and the policy, of the party to which he had lately belonged, and had formed a vast and deeply-meditated scheme, which very nearly confounded even the able tactics of the statesmen by whom the House of Commons had been directed. To this scheme, in his confidential correspondence, he gave the expressive name of Thorough. His object was to do in England all, and more than all, that Richelieu was doing in France; to make Charles a monarch as absolute as any on the Continent; to put the estates and the personal liberty of the whole people at the disposal of the crown; to deprive the courts of law of all independent authority, even in ordinary questions of civil right between man and man, and to punish, with merciless rigor, all who murmured at the acts of the government, or

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