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and rascal as fast as they. Let us examine the little reason they produce concerning the Exclusion.
"Did the pope, the clergy, the nobility and commonalty of I ranee think it reasonable to exclude a prince for professing a different religion; and will the papists be angry if the protestants be of the same opinion? No, sure, they cannot have the impudence."
First, here is the difference of religion taken for granted, which was never proved on one side, though in the king of Navarre it was openly professed. Then the pope, and the three estates of France had no power to alter the succession, neither did the king in being consent to it: or afterwards, did the greater part of the nobility, clergy, and gentry adhere to the Exclusion, but maintained the lawful king successfully against it; as we are bound to do in England, by the oaths of allegiance and supremacy, made for the benefit of our kings, and their successors? the objections concerning which oath are fully answered by Dr Hicks, in his preface to Jovian; and thither I refer the reader.
They tell us, that what it concerns protestants to do in that case, enough has been heard by us in parliament debates.
I answer, that debates coming not by an act to any issue, conclude, that there is nothing to be done against a law established, and fundamental of the monarchy. They dare not infer a right of taking up arms, by virtue of a debate or vote, and yet they tacitly insinuate this. I ask them, what it does concern protestants to do in this case, and whether they mean any thing by that expression? They have hampered themselves before they were aware; for they proceed in the very next lines to tell us, they believe "the crown of England being hereditary, the next in blood have an undoubted right to succeed, unless God make them, or they make themselves uncapable of reigning." So that according to them, if either of those two impediments shall happen, then it concerns the protestants of England to do that something, which, if they had spoken out, had been direct treason. Here is fine legerdemain amongst them: they have acknowledged a vote to be no more than the opinion of an house, and yet from a debate, which was abortive before it quickened into a vote, they argue after the old song, "that there is something more to be done, which you cannot chuse but guess." In the next place, there is no such thing as incapacity to be supposed, in the immediate successor of the crown. That is, the rightful heir cannot be made uncapable on any account whatsoever to succeed. It may please God, that he may be inhabilis, or inidoneus ad gerendam rempublicam,—unfit or unable to govern the kingdom; but this is no impediment to his right of reigning: he cannot either be excluded or deposed for such imperfection; for the laws which have provided for private men in this case, have also made provision for the sovereign, and for the public; and the council of state, or the next of blood, is to administer the kingdom for him. Charles the Sixth of France, (for I think we have no English examples which will reach it) forfeited not his kingdom by his lunacy, though a victorious king of England was then knocking at his gates; but all things under his name, and by his authority were managed. The case is the same, betwixt a king non compos mentis, and one who is nondum compos mentis; a distracted or an infant-king. Then the people cannot incapacitate the king, because he derives not his right from them, but from God only; neither can any action, much less opinion of a sovereign, render him uncapable, for the same reason; excepting only a voluntary resignation to his immediate heir, as in the case of Charles the Fifth: for that of our Richard the Second was invalid, because forced, and not made to the next successor.
Neither does it follow, as our authors urge, that an unalterable succession supposes England to be the king's estate, and the people his goods and chattels on it. For the preservation of his right destroys not our propriety, but maintains us in it. He has tied himself by law, not to invade our possessions; and we have obliged ourselves as subjects to him, and all his lawful successors: by which irrevocable act of ours, both for ourselves and our posterity, we can no more exclude the successor, than we can depose the present king. The estate of England is indeed the king's; and I may safely grant their supposition, as to the government of England: but it follows not, that the people are his goods and chattels on it; for then he might sell, alienate, or destroy them as he pleased: from all which he has tied himself by the liberties and privileges which he has granted us by laws.
There is little else material in this pamphlet: for to say, "I would insinuate into the king a hatred to his capital city," is to say, he should hate his best friends, the last, and the present Lord Mayor, our two honourable Sheriffs, the Court of Aldermen, the worthy and loyal Mr Common Serjeant, with the rest of the officers, who are generally well affected, and who have kept out their factious members from its government. To say, I would insinuate a scorn of authority in the city, is,"in effect, to grant the parallel in the play: for the authority of tumults and seditions is only scorned in it,—an authority which they derived not from the crown, but exercised against it. And for them to confess I exposed this, is to confess, that London was like Paris,
They conclude with a prayer to Almighty God, in which I therefore believe, the poet did not club. To libel the king through all the pamphlet, and to pray for him in the conclusion, is an action of more prudence in them than of piety. Perhaps they might hope to be forgiven, as one of their predecessors was by king James; who, after he had railed at him abundantly, ended his lampoon with these two verses:
Now God preserve our king, queen, prince and peers,
To take a short review of the whole.—It is manifest, that there is no such parallel in the play, as the faction have pretended; that the story would not bear one where they have placed it; and that I could not reasonably intend one, so contrary to the nature of the play, and so repugnant to the principles of the loyal party. On the other side, it is clear that the principles and practices of the public enemies, have both formerly resembled those of the League, and continue to hold the same resemblance. It appears by the outcry of the party before the play was acted, that they dreaded and foresaw the bringing of the faction upon the stage: and by the hasty printing of Mr Hunt's libel, and the Reflections, before the tragedy was published, that they were infinitely concerned to prevent any farther operation of it. It appears from the general consent of the audiences, that their party were known to be represented; and themselves owned openly, by their hissings, that they were incensed at it, as an object which they could not bear. It is evident
* " And so thou shalt for me," said James, when he came to the passage; "thou art a biting knave, but a witty one."
by their endeavours to shift off this parallel from their side,that their principles are too shameful to be maintained. It is notorious, thatthey, and they only, have made the parallel betwixt the Duke of Guise and the Duke of Monmouth, and that in revenge for the manifest likeness they find in the parties themselves, they have carried up the parallel to the heads of the parties, where there is no resemblance at all; under which colour, while they pretend to advert upon one libel, they set up another. For what resemblance could they suggest betwixt two persons so unlike in their descent, the qualities of their minds, and the disparity of their warlike actions, if they grant not, that there is a faction here, which is like that other which was in France? so that if they do not first acknowledge one common cause, there is no foundation for a parallel. The dilemma therefore lies strong upon them; and let them avoid it if they can,—that either they must avow the wickedness of their designs, or disown the likeness of those two persons. I do further charge those audacious authors, that they themselves have made the parallel which they call mine, and that under the covert of this parallel they have odiously compared our present king with king Henry the Third; and farther, that they have forced this parallel expressly to wound His Majesty in the comparison: for, since there is a parallel (as they would have it) it must be either theirs or mine. I have proved that it cannot possibly be mine: and in so doing, that it must be theirs by consequence. Under this shadow all the vices of the French king are charged by those libellers (by a side-wind) upon ours; and it is indeed the bottom of their design to make the king cheap, his royal brother odious, and to alter the course of the succession.