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city to sell their provisions, viz. Of every per- sions, 6d. per day. For every cart-load nat son for every horse-load of provisions into any drawn with more than three horses, 4d. per public market within the said city, brought to day. If drawn with more than three horses, sell
, 2d. per day. For every dorser of provi- 6d. per day. And that these sums of money pressed every thing that looks fair upon the to submit to the King's Order of Regulations. crown, and extracted all that, with the com- The proper wording should have been to the plement of his art, might look ill or tyrannical, King's Offer of Regulations ; but he thinks as he thinks, I have put all his extracts of the the other looks more tyrannous. And, as to speech in a distinct character, which, com- what was done afterwards for the city, and the pared with the whole, shews how better and authority and honour of it, and how evenly worse may be counterchanged if such liberties and fairly matters were carried for conserving are allowed.
the rights and supporting the splendor of the ** But this author of our's is not content to city government, and how well generally the cull and suppress to serve his libellous purpose, citizens were satisfied with it, no one syllable but directly falsifies. For example, the speech, in all this Complete History. But only in a taking notice of the better grace, if more corner, in his annual list of court preferments, early, says,
- That his majesty's affec- with their taggs, extracted from the Gazette, tion for the city is too great to reject their he has crowded in the commissions granted by
suit for that cause,' that is for the tardy ap- the crown to the lord mayor and sheriffs, as plication. This I think is plain English. But if they had got good places ; but nothing of how is it with him ? However his majesty the nature and frame of the city government * would not reject their suit if they agreed upon established upon this seisure. And what of it is "the particulars the king now required of them.' | put here, looks as if it had been set out of the This is English too, but no part of the Lord way on purpose that nobody should stumble Keeper's Speech. For the clause imported a upon it ; and indeed, in the midst of such a declaration of the king's affection for the city catalogue of course, I had almost overlooked so much, that, however he might justly have it. And no wonder if passages, in sach mastaken distaste at their not applying till judg-querade, escape one's notice ; and, if it had mnent against them was pronounced, yet out of been slipt over, he must have blamed his own affection, he would excuse them so far ; ataxy in the disposition ; for I purpose to do whereupon the matter, in his majesty's inten- him full right in every circumstance. It seems tions, was the same as if they had applied at that the city bad, by their common council, first, and not given any occasion of offence. submitted, but the renewal of the charter was But here the author sinks all that, and repre- not prosecuted effectually; which might probents the king as higgling to make a bargain ceed partly from the good condition the city with them, or throwing out to invite them to was maintained in by the crown, of wbich I purchase his pardon by accepting the terms; am about to speak, and, partly, because it was as if he were wheedling them, and the law a business that, for the misconstruction which had done nothing at all. Such a maulkin doth the faction cast upon every thing tending that be make of majesty in this affair! But all is of way, few cared to be forward in: and many a piece ; none can say the author is non com- thought it might stay for some more propipos, for in this new work of his, he is never tious time, no hart coming in the interim to beside himself, that is in his design, which is the city. perpetual libel. But, in his method of pro- “ Now some would, in such a case, expect ceeding, he is a very Proteus ; for he could on to hear that the courtiers divided the city resome occasions as to give a true state of the venues amongst them ; and that no order, nativn, bring in two bideous lung speeches property, or content, was left to the public in verbatim because they were all partial and London ; as if the town had been taken, or siđeling, crab-wise, to his side: but here a dealt with as princes use when they mulct speech, that states the dealing of the sovereign their towns, that are contumacious, and, falling with the great city of London upon a seisure under their power, slight their favours and of all their franchises, than which a greater condescensions to them, in great sums of crisis hath scarce happened in any reign, must money or
For who could bave be mangled, depraved, transposed, and altered opposed the king's setting up of an exchequor m matter and form, to serve a false turn. An for the revenues, formerly, of the city, or Historian would have esteemed it an original granting a commission, as upon an escheat to of greatest value in such an incident, to ac- the crown ? But so far from this, that no citicomplish his relation, by giving it, so material zen, most acquainted with the public business as every period of it was, in the very words, or and forms of the city, much less strangers, by (affecting brevity) a full and true extract of any thing appearing, or done, after the seithe sense of it; but an historian and a libeller sure, could possibly (not knowing what had are as different as bawk and buzzard.
past) imagine that the order and model of the “Another scandalous concealment of the government there was any way changed from author, is the whole train of consequences upon what it was before the seisure. For there this seisure, He says indeed that the common was the lord mayor, court of aldermen, swordcounei determined by a majority of 18 voices bearer, town-clerk, chamberlain, and all infe
should be paid to the use of the mayor, com- , market. And that by colour of this law, the monalty, and citizens: and if any refused to mayor, commonalty, and citizens, for the pay, then to be removed from his place in the own private gain, had illegally, by the space rior officers and attendance, just as before. of Property. Some such familiar spirit might And the revenues of the city were collected bave disclosed to him what the grievances
, i and paid into the chamber, and issued again any, were in the proceedings ; but the regu. to the proper uses, without the diversion of a larity of them was vindicated, to the satisfaction farthing ; only all this was done by virtue of a of all mankind, by the Press which laid every royal conimission, as before by a royal charter, instance, from time to time, before them. And co-operating with the ancient customs of the the same diable might have enabled him to tell city. As for instance : the chief magistrate, us what secret corruption was in the business
, whether by the name of Portreve, Custos, or If the judges were scandalous, ignorant, Mayor, was elder than the corporation. The any way unfit, the nation had rang of it. But sheriffs were appointed by commission, as in all this is not full enough, the author mas other counties: the aldermen of the wards find somewhat else to say. were established by commission like that of “ He observes the Court had no way to get the peace. And, by these means, all the au- a power over the sheriffs, but by taking away thorities of the law and government, as well the charter ; which may be true if he had as for the disposition of the city revenues, used the law term of seising instead of taking subsisted as effectually as when the corporation away ; for the latter doth not imply a legal itself subsisted ; and the external appearance process, as the other doth, but rather a rident was in all respects the same ; which was an or tortious taking. As if a man, by judgmest
, anspeakable content to the good citizens, and levies a debt upon my goods, to say he ere created such a trust in the King, so far as his cuted his judgment is true, but that be took person and authority needed, they would have away my goods, without more, is false. But, trusted any thing in his hands. They saw as to this power over the sheriffs, which once there was as much care taken of the city, as a • effected would not only give the Court adranfather could take of a child, and all the counsel tage to make a common hall,' is nonsense ; and skill of the court, not without consulting for the sheriffs, as officers, have nothing to dy and conference with the most valuable citizens, with the livery, common hall, or corporation
, was used sincerely for that end ; and all this, more than with a commission of assize and as was declared, for the sakes of those worthy Nisi Prius, &c. They are ministers of the citizens, as had been eminently loyal, But it law, and bound to attend the chief magistrate ; seems to me that all this lenity to the citizens and had been the same if the city had no priwas an impediment to the renewal of the vilege of nominating them, but they had coree charter, as might have been sued out in that in by the ordinary shrieval commission, as E reign ; but, when all the revenues went in the other counties. Both ways, charter and conold channel, and no prejudice like to accrue, mission, the office is exactly the same. Au the city procrastinated the doing of it, waiting, I marvel what put it in the author's head to (as I suppose) for accident to save them that set the sheriffs upon making a common ball! trouble, as did really happen.
I make no doubt but, if the
body of the city, “ But what says our Complete Historian ? duly for such purpose assembled, should orde " Loss of their Liberties, evident violation of the poll to be taken by the common serjeant,
liberty and property,'-Good lack! When and not by the sheriffs, it must be so ; though a man is sued at law for a trespass, and a judg- it is confessed the latter are more fit, because ment is bad against him for damages, and the it is a tumultuous business, and they are cutbailiffs come with an execution and take his servators armed to keep the king's peace
* Loss of his kettle.' And if a man But open a gap for making an House o forfeits his recognizance in the nature of a Commons too. Wonderful ignorance ! For, it statute staple, and there coines a ' Capias si London be a gap, the great doors in all Eng • Laicus levare' and extent all together, ': Viol:nd are open to let in this supposititious House • lation of Liberty and Property. Here is the of Commons; for doth not the king arbitrardy author's politico-legal skill! But we bave appoint all the sheriffs of all counties
, sare heard much, and are not to forget that, about one, and a few cities ? And yet we have not this part of his book, he hath occasion to coin found that the crown could ever make u somewhat extraordinary to varnish over some House of Commons, nor ever will, by tha parlous measures (as he words it, but the law means, although the sheriffs of London and terms high treason) which are drawing up Middlesex were appointed in the same manner
. against him in battle rangee to overturn all But • If the city could not hold her own by bis endeavours, it be cannot get somewhat law. • Petitio ejusdem rei cujus petitur atis mobbish to make head against it; and, for that • solutio,' What' determines own but the law? purpose, nothing like such ejaculations as those sentences are ; no matter for sense,
Put it thus; If a strong thief cannot hold his truth, or foundation ; ont with it
, something ferers must truckle. So this worthy hypo
own (stolen goods) by law, tha en all lesser palwill stick. I wonder which of his spirits thesis concludes. laught him that going to law was a violation
“ The author touches the forfeitures an 16
of seven years next after the making this ordi- And further, That whereas a session of parnance, received divers great sums of money, in liament was holden by prorogation, and con. all amounting to 5,0001. per ann. in oppres- tinued to the 10th of January, 32 Car. 2, and sion of the king's subjects.
then prorogued to the 20th of Jan. then next: dicule, and steeringly calls them -- two hei terfuge; for be throws out an empty bubble to nous crimes, no worse than these. Admitting detain you from fixing an eye upon the matter, them to have been peccadillos, although, in that is the uses for which the money was illetruth, they were heinous crimes, what is that gally raised; a thing never appearing in the to the purpose ?
He is to learn some law, reasoning of the cause, and nothing at all to though, by fits, he sets up for a great deal; as the purpose. Then he quarrels that there that a good lawyer will choose a trifle, of a fact were no more than two solemn arguings; (he that is plain and clearly proved, to assign for a is a good friend to the lawyers) but pretends not hreach of a condition, though there are other but there were full time allowed them to be matters of greater value that are not so punctu- prepared ; and then to say that two arguments ally terminated : So the least offence forfeits a was not enough, or all that any suitor can exfranchise equally with the greatest, as was said pect
, or, at any time (unless the judges are in before. But I Have a main suspicion we shall doubt and desire it) happens, is ignorant and have foul play about these forfeiting facts, ridiculous. when we come at them. The first he says was “ But now comes a wise sentence.. "The they made an address to the king for the par- judgment was observed to be strange and unliament to sit to redress grievances. A man is warrantable, for it was without any reasons a strange falsary that writes matters of fact, given.' Where doth this profound lawyer and hath a public record, and that printed over find that a sentence declared, without reasons and over again, to confute him ; and from such given, is not warrantable? Or whether reaauthority here I affirm this allegation of the sons or no reasons make any difference in the forfeiture to be false. It was not the petition, but behaviour of the judges, as if they did not do the libel and defamation of the king in public, right in judging according to law without reathough shaped under the form of a petition, that sons given? Not long since, a great chief of was the crime. A bare petition ordered and the law gave a judgment in his court touching presented, though in terms as here is expressed, a case of nobility, and was urged, in an higher had
been no crime at all, and had never been tribunal, to give his reasons why he gave that alledged. But take here the very words of the judgment; whereto he conformed, saying, that libel extracted from the petition. “ Your pe- the reason, why he gave judgment for the detitioners are extremely surprised at the late pro- ' feydant, was that he was satisfied in his conrogation, whereby the prosecution of the pub- science that the law was for him. The form lic justice of the kingdom, and the making of the court is consideratum est per curiam necessary, provisions for the preservation of quod, &c.' and saying that the plaintiff must hath received interruption. That is, the king were done with six hour's talk. Now his for is had scandalously broke the trust of his govern- a wise one. Every student knows that the ment, which, by the party law of that time, arguing of the judges in giving judgment, is for forfeited his crown and dignity to his superiors, the pure sake of learning, for the benefit of the those that affected, for treasonable purpuses, to bar and students of the law, and to appear canbe called the people. He could not for his life did to them to whose capacity it is directer, and way true that it was not the petition, but the not for any authority to the judgment. But libellous part of it, that gave the offence, for the case here was that the party men attended, then he had wanted the popular chime of "pe- with their short-hand writers at their elbows, to stand for sense, truth, wisdom, and every thing should so) slip from the mouths of the judges,
raised money towards repairing Cheapside con- great measure, frustrated of that. But I have nifies the use, for
which the money was raised, when he reaches out so far for nothing, and do if they had no power to raise it? And was it therefore guess that, after all, very good reapothing for the common council of London to sons were given by the judges ; and whoever tax the people of England coming to their will look upon the
print, may be satisfied. Mr. markets, which by law were free, as others Justice Jones, the chiet judge in the
absence of ane, paying the usual and reasonable toll? the chief justice Saunders (who had been apo
as well have taxed the people that plectic) for the whole court pronounced the came in and out at their gates, over the bridge, judgment with reasons and authorities cited, much the king's counsel were in the right in the offence
, because they afforded no handles
of pitching upon these two facts for the for- oaption of crimination. I shall subjoin the feitures; for here a serpentine author would very words of that venerable judge, as, by the them: And, for this last, he hath a rare sub-printed. He said:
The mayor, commonalty, and citizens, 13th (thority, assumed upon themselves ad censenJan. 32 Car. 2, in their common council as- • dum et judicandum dictum dominom regen, sembled, unlawfully, maliciously, advisedly, • et prorogationem parliamenti per dominen and seditiously, and without any lawful au- regem sic fact.' And then and there in com
“1. That a corporation aggregate might decent, or fit to be remembered, but the antber's • be seized, that the statute 28 Edw. 3, c. 10, is gross partiality forces it from me. Obserne • express that the franchises and liberties of the afterwards a reason the author gives for the
city, upon such defects, shall be taken into reporting the opinion of the chief justice cos• the king's hands. That a body politic may current with theirs present; than which do
offend and be pardoned, appears by the thing is more usually done on like occasions is general article of pardon, 12 Car. 2, whereby Westminster-ball
. Toconfirm,' says be the • corporations are pardoned all crimes and of judgment by better authority than their own • fences: And the act for regulating corpora- this is false, for the better authority was in • tions 18 Car. 2, which provides that no cor- court, though the chief was absent. Ás for the . poration shall be avoided for any thing by folly of the remark, I think no words deed be • them misdone, or omitted to be done, shews spent upon it. But still we lose onr labour, * also that their charters may be avoided for for the very fact, that leads to all this in ou • things by them misdone, or omitted to be done. author, is false ; that is two judges oply, for
“. 2. That the exaction and taking money there was Jones, Withins, and Raymond by a pretended by-law, was extortion, and See the force of libel, that can make three be
a forfeiture of the franchise of being a corpo- come but two. I shall here conclude there 6 ration.
notes, about the Quo Warranto against the city “3. That the petition was scandalous and of London, with recommending to the curious 4 libellous, and the making and publishing it a (in law matters at least) the reading of the beg • forfeiture.
arguments of this case, as they are reported is “64. That the act of the common council was print, for there will be diversion, as well as • the act of the corporation.
learning, in observing some points maintained; " • 5. That the matter, set forth in the record, as that the common council were not the baby, • did not excuse or avoid these forfeitures set but deputies: that corporations are immortal
, • forth in the replication.
and divers other strange tenets for upholder "• 6. That the information was well founded the argument on the city's side. Which shey
" And thereupon judgment was given for that importunate people will affirm any thing, . the king, by the opinion of the whole court.' | to serve turns, though never so senseless; But shall an author have credit in any thing, hoping some, that understand little, or are that is bold to say, untruly, that it was with very willing, will give credit upon their aout any reasons given?
thority: and, if justice must stay till such " But now, says the author, it was ' by two importunes are satisfied, there's a re plus ultre jadges only. These are hedge objections of all law. When nothing can be said against the matter “ It would make one grin to observe the they fall upon the manner, and in circumstances author's come-off from this and the rest of the not material. It were a dainty government charters in this time; which he hath mit that could please those that are resolved not to historically contrived to do by subjoining a be pleased, or obviate objections that are of piece of that foul libel that I gave a censure af nothing at all! But still I suspect our author before, and now stands bare-faced in his Canis not true. Saunders was absent indeed, about plete History. It was penned with all the renom which the author hath a tale, viz. «That he the wit of an enraged and exploded faction
said why do you trouble me that you know could invent, and in words utter. This method • have lost my memory? But it seems that in of historiography is without example ang open court, iwo judges (as they declare) at his civilized nations; and, however barbarous ages desire, reported his opinion to be for the judg- may be valued for precedents of the like, the ment; and this the author thinks to enervate brass will not be found in them that shines with a tale for which he hath no authority. | here. Our ordinary anecdotarians make use Whether shall we believe, the judges upon their of libels, but do not declaredly transcribe and duty and oaths, or a chimeric inference from ingraft them into their text, as our hypobolist his story? But here it is usually so; when hath done here, and in numerous other places the fact cannot be proved or disproved, some of his book. But he seems to rejoice in this, enigmatic sentence is brought forth, from which comes up to the height of his ambition in wlience a reader of himself shall be inclined to figurative scandal upon his late sovereign, ang suppose it. The aathor could not touch upon the ministry of that time, so much that, upon the calamity that fell upon the ford chief the strength of his own wit or courage, he did justice Fales before he gave judgment for not dare to attempt half so high. I do not Bernardiston against Soams ; though his lord- mean out of any fear of his persen, for that ship was deplorably altered from what he was: is insconsed, but of infamy,
which he is forward for, from the most temperate judge that ever to deserve, but loth to suffer; and therefore mat, he became the most impotently passionate deals forth his merda by the hirelings of the that ever was seen. These things are scarce times, that he might not stink in all compa
mon council assembled, did give their votes semb'ed, to the king should be exhibited; in and order, that a certain Petition under the which said Petition was contained, name of the mayor, aldermen, and commons That by the prorogation, the prosecution of of the city of London, in common council as- the public justice of the kingdom, and the zies, and so be found out by those that other which he had now found to be the very root of vise do not know him. Else why doth be the faction. not speak for himself and stand to it? Theu “ This his majesty, and all wise and good the abuse of religion and scripture, most athe- men perceived, could be no other ways done, istieally held forth in this excerpt of a libel, had than first by reducing the elections of the been all his own; and the scandal had been Sheriffs of London to ibeir ancient order and carried on by the strength of his own genius. rules, that of late were become only a business of So in the full joy of this fine piece of property clamour and violence : And then to make inlibel I leave him, and pass on to other matters quiry into the validity of the city charter itself; which he supplies so copiously, I think I shall which an ill party of men had abused to the never bave done with him.
danger, and would have done it to the destruc* I cannot pass by a marginal index, which tion of the government, had they been suffered points to a list of hard and arbitrary judgments, to go on never so little farther uncontrouled. as the author calls them; and why not a list
* In both these inost just and necessary unalso of good and righteous judgments ? For dertakings, the righteousness of his majesty's sure the time afforded some; and it had been cause met with an answerable success. First but equal to have shewed them as well as notwithstanding all the tumultuous riots the facothers. The reason of which partiality bath tious party committed, to disturb the peaccable been given clearly enough already, viz. apo- issue of that affair; yet the undoubted right of logy to be dressed up to palliate the intended the lord mayor's nominating the eldest sheriff, rebellion, discovered at the Rye, which a re
was restored and established : And so the ad. verend person on an unhappy occasion) ministration of justice once more put in a way termed some stirs. But now I am concerned of being cleared from partiality and corruption. about the justice of his method of writing. He And then a due judgment was obtained, by an fills a few columns with concise accounts of equal process of law, against the charter itself, divers cases of persons questioned, and some and its franchises declared forfeited to his mapunisbed, for misdemeanors, being thereof jesty.”. Legally convict. And here is his notion of hard " llis majesty cannot but esteem this to have and arbitrary ; but it is only when the poor been equalled by none but that ; that, in so sufferers are of bis party. It was not so in the dangerous a junction of public affairs, he has time of Oates ; then all the condemnations met with so many unfeigned testimonies of were the justice of the nation, against the least love to his person and zeal to his government, of which no man durst whisper. I looked over from all degrees of men in the nation. these cases, as any one else may do, and, by
“ And if some have swerved from their duty, any thing he shews, could not discover the cir. yet bis majesty's indignation and resentments cumstances of them. It must be a nice report against them are overwhelmed by the comthat verifies his index against the justice of a fortable remembrance of the far greater and nation. No historian's words will be taken better number of those who stood by him in summarily to that purpose, withont alledging the severest trials. how and in what. "Shall the pablic adminis- “ So his majesty has just reason to acknowtration of the laws be defamed as tyrannous and ledge, the main body of the nobility and gentry oppressive, against the unimpeached authority has done : So has the whole sound and honest of the judges that act upon oath, on no better part of the commonalty: So the great founground than this man's dixit ? especially when tains of knowledge and civility, the two uniit stinks of a faction? I shall instance but in versties : So the wisest and most learned in one or two of these cases; the first is that of the laws : So the whole clergy, and all the geHolloway, for the treason of the Rye Plot. nuine sons of the church of England: A He confessed the whole crime at large, as, in church whose glory it is, to have been never the print before his trial, appears.
This is tainted with the least blemish of disloyalty. a choak-pear to the author; and he can “ His majesty cannot here forbear to let the come off it no better than by saying that he world know, what entiré satisfaction he has seemed to confess,' and just so he seemed to be taken in one special testimony of his subjects hanged."
affections; whence through God's gracious The time-serving, despicable, worthless siderable advantage, by means of this very
providence the monarchy has gained a most conSprat (see some account of him in his Case, conspiracy ; And it is, that so great a number A.D. 1992, in this Collection) says, concerning of the cities and corporations of this kingdom,
have since so freely resigned their local immuHis majesty foreseeing how destructive, nities and charters into his majesty's hands ; in time, the effects of so great and growing å lest the abuse of any of them should again mischiet would be, resolved at length, after hereafter prove hazardous to the just prerogamany iatolerable provocations, to strike at that tives of the crown.
this matter :