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derous tome, whose title we have chosen to prefix to the present article. : Of the numerous catalogue of vices, with which men are apt to gratify their spleen by stigmatizing the characters of their rulers, there is none to which royalty has ever been more obnoxious, nor one from which it can, in general, be more easily exculpated, than that of political ingratitude. Not to mention the great difficulty there must always be in discriminating between those, who in troubled times have actually done and suffered, and those who have only talked and made empty professions of attachment, it seems a mistaken notion to suppose, that services done to the crown constitute a necessary or binding claim upon the rewards and distinctions which it has to confer. So much is it the custom of common conversation to talk only of the king's service and the king's necessities, that we come insensibly to consider the monarch as the only party interested in the stake which may happen to be pending; and to forget, that, when we stand up in defence of church and king, we mean, if we mean any thing at all, to vindicate our own right to worship God after the way of our fathers, and to preserve inviolate the rights and property they have bequeathed us. He who, in civil commotions, draws his sword from any other than such interested motives, is an insane bigot to his own chivalrous and irrational loyalty; or, worst of all, fights, a mere mercenary, in the very fields and by the very hearth-stone of his ancestors. The only reward which a true citizen can propose to himself, as the recompense of his sufferings and privations in the cause to which he has devoted his life and property, must be the eventual firm and lasting security of both ; or, if unsuccessful in the vindication of his rights, that he may, at least, bear away into foreign lands that balm, more healing than a king's favour—the ineffable quiet of an approving conscience. Regarding his services, not as a favour conferred, but as a debt due to his country and to himself, such a one will not invoke the faith of kings, and murmur loudly at finding his services neglected or overlooked ; nor will he repine, that, in the distribution of places and distinctions, his own individual interests have been postponed to the general welfare of the community. Of such a stamp were many of those gallant cavaliers, whose loyal crests glanced in the sun-beam that shone upon the field of Edge-hill; but of a far different description were those younger royalists, who, with loud and obstreperous shouts, and the cry of “ give!give!” in their mouths, hastened to greet the royal wanderer, on his return from an almost hopeless exile.
If the debt, which the loyalty of subjects is understood, however erroneously, to impose upon the gratitude of the
sovereign, be, in most cases, too heavy to be easily discharged,
“ 'Twas this produced the joy, that hurried o'er
No sooner was Charles arrived at Canterbury, which was within three hours after he had landed at Dover, than he found reason to lament the condition to which, in the character and situation of a restored monarch, he found he must necessarily be subject. Thither both those who had services on which to found their pretensions, and those who had none-those who had acted, and those who had only talked—those who had bled, and those who had drank in his cause, hastened alike, and were alike received with open arms and flowing expressions of grace. So universal appeared the welcome, that he was wont merrily to say, “ it could be nobody's fault but his own that he had stayed so long abroad, when all mankind wished him so heartily at home.”+ Such as were known to him, he addressed with some pertinent inquiry-others, he saluted more distantly, at a venture, as “ old acquaintance"I-and for all he had a smile, that thawed the frost work of every man's bosom, as a snow-wreath vanishes under the influence of the mid-day sun.
“On each side bowing popularly low,
* Continuation of the Life of Lord Clarendon.
A prince so gracious in bis expressions, and so liberal of his courtesy, was easily conceived to be generous too; and every one began to assure himself of the full accomplishment of his wildest wishes. Nay, some, that they might not lose the present opportunity, forced him to give them audience on the spot, and reckoning up the insupportable losses which they themselves, or their fathers, had undergone in his service, demanded the present grant or promise of such and such offices of the highest trust and importance. They pressed these extravagant requests with such importunity, and, what was worse, with such tedious discourses, “ that the king was extremely nauseated with their suits, though his modesty knew not how to break from them ;” and he had no sooner regained the freedom of his own closet, which for some hours he was not able to do, than he began to bemoan himself, and to lament to the Chancellor the hard lot which his happy restoration had imposed upon him. And, in truth, he did “from that minute contract such a prejudice against the persons of some of those, though of the greatest quality, for the indecency and incongruity of their pretences, that he never afterwards received their addresses with his usual grace or patience, and rarely granted any thing they desired, though the matter was more reasonable, and the manner of asking much more modest.”* A man of large mind would have been prepared to expect, and therefore have borne with equanimity, the unreasonable and griping avidity of his partizans; and with one of a liberal disposition, the disgust it could hardly fail to inspire, would have soon blown over, and left him free to use his penetration in detecting and rewarding real merit. But Charles was neither high-minded, nor generous; he neither forgot, nor forgave-made allowance, nor distinction; but having had the misfortune to be disgusted and fatigued by the tiresome importunity of a few, he revenged himself by a total neglect of all. Circumstanced, however, as he was, and happily as much restricted by the conditions on which his restoration was effected, from allowing scope to his gratitude, or room to his revenge, we see no just cause for being severe in our censure, or joining in the outcry that was raised against him during his life, and has since continued to pursue his memory. Forfeitures he had none, with which to glut the craving of his followers for the presbyterian party, though they had neglected the interests of liberty, had been careful of their own—and the persons who had accompanied him from abroad—who, in their own language, had “ borne the burthen and heat of the day,"
* Continuation of the Life of Lord Clarendon.
and, therefore, had the better right to push on their fortunes, had appetites sufficiently keen to swallow up whatever else he had to bestow. * To gratify all was clearly impossible ; and as it was particularly incumbent on him to conciliate all parties and to offend none-as he stood in the unusual predicament of owing more to his enemies than to his friends, little regard could, perhaps, be had to the merits of the more ancient and respectable cavaliers. These, who had been incomparably the greatest sufferers, and in all respects merited most, never made any inconvenient suits to him, but modestly left to his own reflections the consideration of all they had done and undergone. But this was far from being the character of the great majority of the cavaliers, who were seldom, to use the words of Baxter, “ sick of the disease called tenderness of conscience or scrupulosity;" and whose importunity in pressing for placé and preferment was only to be equalled by their incapacity to discharge the offices they sought. The vice of drunkenness, brought on by the uneasiness of their condition during the Protectorate, and the necessity of frequenting meetings together, for which taverns offered the most security, had woefully impaired their judgement, and ruined their intellects;† whilst the very poverty to which the more zealous royalists had reduced themselves, by rendering them insignificant, made them unequal to the support of government. On the other hand, the king's reconciled adversaries, to whom, more than to his ancient friends, he was indebted for his restoration, had equal pretensions to a share of his favour; and being, from practice, more acquainted with public business, were better qualified to execute any trust committed to them. The general unfitness, then, of the cavaliers for places of consequence in the statethe necessity Charles was under of scrupulously respecting the property, and conciliating the good will, of those who had been most active against him, and his utter want of means in any degree proportioned to the numerous claims made upon his bounty, are the grounds on which Clarendon defends or excuses his neglect of those, whose zeal and sufferings in the royal cause had known no bounds. Without stopping to consider with what grace such an apology comes from one who had received £20,000 from the king, and the forfeited estate of one of the late king's judges, though he had never suffered imprisonment, nor even hazard in the field, it must be acknowledged, that the indifference shown to the wretched cavaliers ought, in candour, to be charged rather upon the necessity of the case, than the neglect or ingratitude of the monarch.
and on their serving as to gaines, they comes is a
.' It was, of course, not to be expected, that angry and disappointed men should admit the reasonableness of an excuse, that went to deprive them of the poor consolation of venting their murmurs-rehearsing their wrongs, and abusing their superiors. They jested indignantly on the title of the “ act of oblivion and indemnity ;” and said, “ his majesty had passed an act of oblivion to his friends, and indemnity to his enemies ;'** and against the Chancellor, who used to beat down the value of their services, and was reported, though falsely, to have advised the king “ to gain his enemies, since he was sure of his friends by their principles,” they conceived an implacable resentment. The neglect of the cavaliers is a favourite topic of the libels and satires of which that age was so prolific:-Andrew Marvel insults their disappointed hopes as well as his halting verse will permit; and Rochester, the universal libeller, has not failed to hitch his sovereign's ingratitude into a kind of miserable epigram.
“ His father's foes he does reward,
Preserving those that cut off's head :
Bishop Burnet, the severe censurer, and sometimes malicious interpreter, of his conduct, has likewise his observations on the subject; to the truth of which we should have been more willing to subscribe, had he been candid enough to make allowance for the insuperable difficulties of Charles's situation: “ He had been,” says that historian, “ obliged to so many who had been faithful to him, and careful of him, that he seemed afterwards to resolve to make an equal return to them all: and finding it not easy to reward them all as they deserved, he forgot them all alike. Most princes seem to have this pretty deep in them; and to think, that they ought never to remember past services, but that their acceptance of them is a full reward. He, of all in our age, exerted this piece of prerogative in the amplest manner : for he never seemed to charge his memory, or trouble his thoughts, with the sense of any of the services that had been done him.”
That the poverty and distress of the cavaliers would have been proportionably mitigated by royal bounty, in case Charles's difficulties had been fewer, and his means of evincing