Page images

sition (those at Warrington being soon put to flight by his presence), until he came to Worcester. His army consisted of twelve thousand effectual fighting men (whereof two thousand English, the rest of the Scottish nation); but neither excellently armed, nor plentifully stored with ammunition, whilst the Parliament forces under Cromwell more than doubled that number, wanting nothing [but a good cause] that an army could wish or desire.

The royalists' chiefest strength consisted in two passes they possessed over the river of Severn, which proved not advantageous according to expectation; for the enemy found the river fordable elsewhere; and the bridge and pass at Upton, though valiantly defended by major-general Massey (who received a shot in his hand) was forced by Lambert pouring in unequal numbers on the king's forces. Besides, Cromwell finished a bridge of boards and planks over the main river, with more celerity, and less resistance, than could have been expected in a matter of such importance.

Then began the battle; wherein his majesty, to remember his subjects' good, forgot his own safety, and gave an incomparable example of valour to the rest, by charging in his own person. This was followed by few to the same degree of danger; but imitated in the greatest measure, by the Highlanders, fighting with the butt-ends of their muskets when their ammunition was spent. But new supplies constantly charging them, and the main body of the Scotch horse not coming up in due time from the city to his majesty's relief, his army was forced to retreat in at Sudbury-gate in much disorder.

If there were (which some more than whisper) false and foul play in some persons of principal trust; as they have had a great space seasonably, God grant them his grace sincerely to repent, for their treacherous retarding the happiness, prolonging and increasing the miseries, of a gracious king and three great nations ! Sure it is, here were slain the flower of the Scottish loyal gentry, with the most illustrious William (formerly earl of Laneric) duke of Hamilton. As for common soldiers, some few who had escaped had a longer life, to have a sadder death, wandering in the country till other men's charity and their own strength failed them.

Since, how God hath conducted his majesty miraculously, through labyrinths of many difficulties, to the peaceable possession of his throne, is notoriously known to the wonder of the world.

Here my Muse heartily craveth leave to make an humble address to his majesty; depositing at his feet the ensuing Panegyric :




At Worc'ster great God's goodress to our nation,
It was a conquest your bare preservation.
When midst your fiercest foes on every side
For your escape God did a LANE provide ;
They saw you gone, but whither could not tell,
Star-staring, though they asked both heaven and hell.

Of foreign states you since have studied store,
And read whole libraries of princes o'er.
To you all forts, towns, towers, and ships are known
(But none like those which now become your own).
And though your eyes were with all objects filled,
Only the good into your heart distilled.

Garbling men's manners, you did well divide :
To take the Spaniards' wisdom, not their pride ;
With French activity you stored your mind,
Leaving to them their fickleness behind ;
And soon did learn, your temperance was such,
A sober industry even from the Dutch.

But tell us, gracious sovereign, from whence
Took you the pattern of your patience ?
Learnt in affliction's school, under the rod,
Which was both used and sanctified by God.
From Him alone that lesson did proceed,
Best tutor with best pupil best agreed.

We, your dull subjects, must confess our crime,
Who learnt so little in as long a time
And the same school. Thus dunces' poring looks
Mend not themselves, but only mar their books.
How vast the difference 'twixt wise and fool!
The master makes the scholar, not the school.

With rich conditions Rome did you invite,
To purchase you their royal proselyte,
(An empty soul's soon tempted with full coffers),
Whilst you with sacred scorn refused their proffers.
And for the Faith did earnestly contend
Abroad, which now you do at home defend.

Amidst all storms, calm to yourself the while,
Saddest afflictions you did teach to smile.
Some faces best become a mourning dress ;
And such your patience, which did grace distress :
Whose soul, despising want of worldly pelf,
At lowest ebb went not beneath itself,



God's justice now no longer could dispense
With the abusing of His providence.
To hear success his approbation styl'd,
And see the bastard brought against the child.
[Scripture] by such, who in their own excuse
Their actings 'gainst his writings did produce.

The pillar which God's people did attend,
To them in night a constant light did lend,
Though dark unto th’ Egyptians behind;
Such was brave Monck in his reserved mind,
A riddle to his foes he did appear,
But to you and himself, sense plain and clear.

By means unlikely God achieves his end,
And crooked ways straight to his honour tend ;
The great and ancient gates of London town,
(No gates, no city) now are voted down,
And down were cast, О happy day! for all
Do date our hopeful rising from their fall.

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

So Solomon most wisely did conceive,
His temple should be still-born, though alive.
That stately structure started from the ground
Unto the roof, not guilty of the sound
Of iron-tool, all noise therein debarr'd ;
This virgin-temple thus was seen, not heard.

Th' impatient land did for your presence long,
England in swarms did into Holland throng.
To bring your highness home, by th' Parliament,
Lords, Commons, citizens, divines were sent :
Such honour subjects never had before,
Such honour subjects never shall have more.

Th' officious wind to serve you did not fail,
But scour'd from the west to east to fill your sail ;
And, fearing that his breath might be too rough,
Prov'd over civil, and was scarce enough ;
Almost you were becalm'd amidst the main,
Prognostic of your perfect peaceful reign.

Your narrow seas, for foreigners do wrong
To claim them (surely doth the ditch belong
Not to the common Continent, but Isle
Inclosed) did on you their owner smile,
Not the least loss, only the Naseby mar'ls
To see herself now drowned in the Charles.



You land at Dover; shoals of people come,
And Kent alone now seems all Christendom.
The Cornish rebels (eight score summers since)
At black-heath fought against their lawful prince ;
Which doleful place, with hateful treason stain'd,
Its credit now by loyalty regain’d.

Great London the last station you did make;
You took not it, but London you did take.;
And now no wonder men did silence break,
When Conduits did both French and Spanish speak.
Now at White.hall the guard, which you attends,
Keeps out your foes, God keep you from your friends !

Tag bells aloud did ring, for joy they felt;
Hereafter sacrilege shall not them melt.
And round about the streets the bonfires blaz'd.
With which New-lights fanatics were amaz'd.
The brandish'd swords this boun begg'd before death,
Once to be shewed, then buried in the sheath,

The Spaniard, looking with a serious eye,
Was forc'd to trespass on his gravity.
Close to conceal his wondering he desir'd,
But all in vain, who openly admir'd.
The French, who thought the English mad in mind,
Now fear too soon they may them sober find.

The Germans seeing this your sudden power,
Freely confess'd another emperor.
The joyful Dane to heav'ns cast up his eyes,
Presuming suffering kings will sympathise.
The Hollanders (first in a sad suspense)
Hop'd that your mercy was their innocence.


Long live our gracious CHARLES, second to none
In honour, who e'er sate upon the throne.
Be you above your ancestors renown'd,
Whose goodness wisely doth your greatness bound;
And, knowing that you may be what you would,
Are pleased to be only what you should.

22. Europe's great arbitrator, in your

Is plac'd of Christendom the casting voice.
Hold you the scales in your judicious hand,
And when the equal beam shall doubtful stand,
As you are pleased to dispose one grain,
So falls or riseth either France or Spain.

As Sheba's queen defective Fame accus'd,
Whose niggardly relations bad abus'd
Th' abundant worth of Solomon, and told
Not half of what she after did behold:
The same your case, Fame hath not done you right;
Qur ears are far out-acted by our sigh.


Yourself's the ship return'd from foreign trading,
England's your port, experience the lading.
God is the pilot; and now, richly fraught,
• Unto the port the ship is safely brought.
What's dear to you, is to your subjects cheap ;
You sow'd with pain what we with pleasure reap.


The good-made laws by you are now made good,
The prince and people's right both understood :
Both being bank'd in their respective station,
No fear hereafter of an inundation.
Oppression, the king's evil, long endur'd,
By others caus’d, by you alone is curd.

And here

my Muse craves her own Nunc dimitlis, never to make verses more ; and because she cannot write on a better, will not write on another occasion, but heartily pray in prose for the happiness of her lord and master. And now, taken our Vale of verses, let us therewith take also our Farewell of Worcestershire.


THE FAREWELL. I read in a good author* how the State of Lunenburg in Germany (whose chief revenues arise from the sale of salt) prohibited poor people the benefit thereof. Whereupon Divine Providence (offended that a monopoly was made of his mercy) stopped the flowing of those salt-springs for a time, till the poor were restored to their partage therein. I am not particularly instructed, what share the poor have in the salt of this shire, not knowing how their interest is stated therein: but I presume the concernments of the poor are well cared for, and all things equally ordered betwixt them and rich people, grounding my confidence on the long and large continuance of the salt-pits amongst them. All I will add is this; I shall pray that they may endeavour for spiritual-soul-savouriness, “ that their speech may be always with grace seasoned.”.4

As for the loyal city of Worcester (which deserves a particular Farewell by itself), I heartily desire that God would be pleased to restore unto it the years which the locust, caterpillar, and palmer-worm, have devoured. And how quickly can be do it (as by infinite other ways, so) by blessing the clothing, the staple commodity in this county! not formerly omitted by me, but pretermitted till this occasion. Sure it is, that the finest (though this may seem a word of challenge) cloth of England is made at Worcester; and such, I believe, was that which Erasmus, that great critic (who knew fine cloth as well as pure Fines Morison, in his Travels, p. 3.

ť Col, iv. 6. # In his Colloquy, intituled, UxOR Μεμψίγαμος. .

« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »