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of which Englishmen have so long and so justly well known by my readers, and it is only needful been proud, though not the first, is yet the earliest that I should say that the people stood upon that conspicuous, evidence of this independence and glorious charter, and demanded that it be mainlove of liberty; true, the barons were the direct tained and carried out in good faith ; the king, actors in compel

James I., defined ling the king to

his position very grant the conces

clearly in these sions embodied

strong words :in the “Magna

“Kings are justCharta," but the

ly called gods, barons would

for that they exhave been power

ercise a manner less without the

resemblance people to sustain

of divine power and support their

upon earth; for demands. The

if you will con"Magna Charta''

sider the attrionce signed and

butes of God, potent, the kings,

you shall see how from the signer JAMES I.

CHARLES

they agree in the down, each in

person of a king. turn sought to subvert or at least evade its inesti- God hath power to create or destroy, to make or mable guarantees, and the people steadfastly main- unmake, at his pleasure; to give life, or send tained and defended the great charter of their liber- death, to judge all, and to be judged nor acties. Thus there was an almost perpetual conflict countable to none; to raise low things, and to between the monarchs and the people of England. make high things low, at his pleasure; and to I cannot detail these struggles, nor would it be God both soul and body are due. And the like germane to my present purpose

power have kings: they make to attempt it. Passing over the

and unmake their subjects; they reigns of the kings from John to

have power of raising and castJames I., I need only recall to

ing down, of life and death : the minds of my readers how the

judges over all their subjects, contest between the latter and

and in all causes, and yet acthe people was waged with un

countable to God only. They relenting vigor from the time of

have power to exalt low things, his accession until his death;

and abase high things, and then taken up by his son and

make of their subjects like men successor, Charles I., and prose

of chess—a pawn to take cuted by him with augmented

bishop or a knight, and to cry zeal, even fury, until the people

up or

lown any of their subwere reduced to the dire alter

jects as they do their money. native of surrendering their loved

And to the king is due both the

ARCHBISHOP LAUD. liberties and accepting the king's

affection of the soul and the interpretation of his prerogatives or taking up service of the body of his subjects.” Between arms in defence of their liberties against the royal the “Magna Charta” and such views of kingly

' encroachments.

rights and prerogatives there could be no accord. The better to understand the extent of the Charles was not so outspoken in words, but was divergence between the kings and the people, it more daring in action. Then Charles married may be well to digress from my subject proper to

a Roman Catholic, and himself was scarcely allude to the position of each in James's reign: less. Not content to wage a civil and political The broad, noble scope of the “ Magna Charta” is warfare against his subjects, he sought likewise

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Fac-SIMILE OF BEGINNING AND ENDING PORTIONS OF CRO.

T'S LETTER ANNOUNCING THE VICTORY OF NASERY.

to enslave them in their religious tenets and But soon he found it necessary again to convene practices. The English Church, itself intoler. Parliament and this was the Long Parliament ant enough, was made by him tenfold worse. under which Charles fell and Cromwell arose. With Buckingham to carry out his political, and Need I recount how it all came to pass ? Suffice Laud to execute his religious, measures, the tyranny it to say, the Parliament under the leadership of of Charles became absolutely unbearable by any the great and noble Pym, by a series of enactbut those willing to become abject slaves, and of ments, formally stripped the King of his obnoxious these England is never prolific. His repeated prerogatives ; sent Laud to the Tower whence he efforts to coerce Parliament, his governing abso- only came forth to mount the scaffold four years lutely without a Parliament for nearly eleven years, later; and in other emphatic ways asserted the his terrible measures, instigated and executed by rights of the long down-trodden nation. Then Laud, against all non-conforming Protestants, the I came the Militia Bill, the ostensible cause of the Independents or Pu

Civil War, and then ritans especially

the Civil War itself. these are all record

Then, after a series ed in the history of

of reverses and victhe realm ; so is the

tories, under other supposed victory of

leaders, came to the the Parliament in

head of the Parliaforcing upon the

mentary Army the king the famous

great Cromwell; the "Petition of Right"

complete overthrow -second in import

of Charles and overance as a charter of

whelming triumph of liberty only to the

the Parliament spee“Magna Charta."

dily ensued, leaving But the royal tyrant

Charles a prisoner in submitted only in

the power of the form; his determined

Parliament. It was will was never sub

the Parliamentary dued or changed

Army under Cromwhile he sat on the

well's command throne. The death OBELISK ON NASEBY FIELD,

which had achieved of Buckingham at Erected to commemorate the final and complete triumph of Cromwell and all this, and now, the hands of John disastrous defeat of Charles,

with Charles a priFelton increased the tyranny of Charles; for soner and the victorious army enthusiastically Laud, the Primate, became also Premier. devoted to its chief, Cromwell readily became Laud's infamy is sufficiently recognized by all the head of the government. honest critics to make it possible to class him as But let us pause and consider the man and his second to no human fiend in the world's history. helpers in founding the Commonwealth: The With such a supporter, Charles quickly filled the founder of the Cromwell family was a Welsh gencup of his iniquities and hastened the hour of his tleman named Williams, who married a sister of doom. The brutal treatment of Prynne, Alexander Thomas Cromwell, minister and vicar-general of Leighton, John Lilburne, and other popular favor. Henry VIII.; the eldest son by this marriage was ites, and still more the harsh treatment of John a special favorite and protege of his grandfather, Hampden, raised the popular blood to boiling and actuated by gratitude or by policy laid aside heat, and all that was wanting was a leader to his own patronymic and adopted that of his powerinsure speedy and terrible retribution. In 1640, ful patron. He was raised to a baronetcy, and the well-known Short Parliament was called by acquired the famous estate of Hinchinbrook, Charles after eleven years of governing without a besides a vast amount of landed property elseParliament—it was almost immediately dissolved. where. At the quiet close of Elizabeth reign

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and of the eventful sixteenth century, still dwelt one of the beds. But the most marvellous of the in the lordly mansion of Hinchinbrook, Sir Henry marvels of Oliver's childhood, was the dream he Cromwell, whose eldest son, Oliver, succeeded is said to have had ; i.e. “that he saw a gigantic him in 1604 in the title and in the possession of figure which came and opened the curtains of his the family homestead ; here Sir Oliver lived in bed, and told him that he should be the greatest princely style for upwards of twenty years, num person in the Kingdom, but did not mention the

. bering among his guests on repeated occasions his word king." Such is the statement of Cromwell's King, James; but in 1627, we was obliged to part biographer, Rev. Mark Noble, who tells us that

, with Hinchinbrook, and thenceforwards lived in though Oliver was told of the folly as well as retirement until 1655,'when he died at the age of the wickedness of such an assertion, he persisted in ninety-three. Sir Henry's second son, Robert, had a patrimony consisting of a house in the town of Huntingdon where he is said to have carried on a brew-house (but that he made a business of brewing has been questioned by reliable critics) and some fields in the adjacent country. Here Oliver, the subsequent “Lord Protector, born, the fifth child and second son of Robert and Elizabeth—the mother has been shown by English writers to have been a blood-relation, eighth cousin, to Charles I.; she was descended from Andrew Steward, second son of Alexander, Lord High Steward of Scotland, and Andrew's elder brother, James, was father of Walter, Lord High Steward, who married Margery, daughter of Robert Bruce, and was thus a progenitor of the royal Scottish line. This is interesting as showing that the great foe of the House was a blood connection thereof.

Oliver received his first training (after what he doubtless had from his pious mother) from Dr. Thomas Beard, Master of Huntingdon Grammar School, who was of that more godly, pious sort of churchmen from which the Puritans later sprang; and doubtless here Oliver imbibed the seeds of whatever Puritanic piety he afterwards possessed.

Among the many curious traditions that are preserved of Oliver's babyhood is this: one day he had been carried by his nurse to Hinchinbrook, to

ANDERSON'S PLACE, NEWCASTLE,

Where Charles became Prisoner to Cromwell's Army. see his grandfather; just at the house, a monkey succeeded in getting possession of the babe, and it; for which he was flogged by Dr. Beard, at the “ bore him to the leads on the top of the house." particular desire of his father ; notwithstanding More intelligent than common monkeys, possibly which he would sometimes repeat ,

it to his uncle a Darwinian developement, this monkey appeared Steward, who told him it was traitorous to relate to understand that he had the destiny of England it.” The same authority assures us that Cromwell in his keeping, for, scampering about for a time, "often mentioned this vision when he was in the

“ to the extreme terror of the grandfather and family, height of his glory.who had brought out multitudes of feather beds On the 23d of April, 1616, Cromwell entered and other like things to save the child's life, should Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge, where he he fall as they confidently expected, he at last studied but a little more than one year, when, quietly descended and gently laid the babe upon upon the death of his father, he left the University.

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the respect and confidence of those who knew him best in his early manhood; otherwise he could scarcely have been selected to represent them in the Parliament as early as 1628. Besides, we find his name sassociated in public town affairs of Huntingdon with those of Dr. Beard, Robert Bernard and others of unquestioned respectability and good repute. That, at most, nothing more than boyish carelessness and indiscretions can have marked

his course, I think is clearly World

established by his early prominence in public station, for

he certainly had little educaTHE Treaty.HOUSE (THE ONE TO THE RIGHT), UXBRIDGE,

tion and no culture to comWhere Charles's Trial was conducted.

mend him and to cover a quesIt is said he soon after this went to London, and tionable character. This much is known or adsome say he commenced law at Lincoln's Inn, but mitted, that he had shown no aptness for the his name cannot be found upon the registers of acquirement of learning, and this to my mind that or any other of the Inns of Court. If he proves that the story of his vision of becoming studied law at all, which is doubtful, it was in the " the greatest person in England," belongs not to office of some attorney. The first that is certainly his school-days, but was a simple fabrication of known of him after his leaving the University, is later time, growing out of, rather than leading his marriage, August 22d, 1620, to Elizabeth, to, his remarkable uprise. daughter of Sir James Bourchier, an eminent mer- Without learning, culture or family prestige, he chant of London. The story of the years inter- became a conspicuous Parliamentary debater and vening between his father's death and his own leader, very soon after his elevation to a seat marriage, as told by royalist writers, is not credited therein, and as the quarrel between Charles and by any but intense royalists, viz : (Anthony Wood, the people waxed hotter, Cromwell became more in "Fasti”) “His father dying while he was at and more conspicuous as the fearless champion of Cambridge, he was taken home and sent to Lin- popular rights. His success as a leader in Parliacoln's Inn to study the common law; but making ment doubtless nothing of it, he was sent for home by his mother, accelerated, if became a debauchee, and a boisterous and rude it did not crefellow.” James Heath (known as “Carrion ate, the vaultHeath") appears to have been the inventor of ing ambition many slanders in his “ Life and Death of Oliver which grew to Cromwell, the late Usurper,” and Dr. George such dimenBate seems to have tried to outdo even Heath ; but sions that nowe must recollect that these, and others like them, thing was bewrote during the heated, ultra royal period imme- yond its aim, diately following the Restoration, when nothing and no impediwas too bad to say against the Cromwells and the ment could Puritans. The best English critics have long re- baulk or check jected the vile slanders of Heath, Bates and com- its determined pany. Oliver Cromwell must have commanded strides. His

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