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they thought they were removed from power to make way for it; and the Whigs, because Charles made the heads of their party the instruments of it at first, and intended in the end to sacrifice them to it.”* Every one who has read the history of Charles II. knows that at this time there were neither Whigs nor Tories ; that those whom Sir John Dalrymple calls Tories were not removed in order to make way for the Dutch war ; and that Charles did not make the heads of those whom he calls Whigs the instruments of it at first, nor intended in the end to sacrifice them to it. The only colour for this passage is, that Shaftesbury, who was properly a popular leader, afterwards became eminent amongst the Whigs, and that Buckingham, who properly belonged to the court, was for some time ‘in opposition. January The King still wanted money, how1672- ever, to begin the undertaking. This was obtained by a mode suggested by Sir Thomas‘ Clifford. i‘ The King’s revenue had hitherto been farmed out to bankers, to whom he allowed eight or ten per cent. for advancing the money before the taxes were received. On a certain daythe Exchequer was shut, and all payments stopt, a measure equivalent to seizing'a million and a half of other men’s *property. Another expedient was, attacking the Dutch Smyrna fleet as it passed through the Channel, though the peace still subsisted. It was right
* Dal. Rev. of Events, &c. p.36. 1' Evelyn. Vide p.4s7. of this volume.
i - and fitting that a war, undertaken to suppress
liberty and in violation of justice, should begin by a fraudulent bankruptcy and a perfidious' aggression. ’r For some time, Charles seems to have been a successful in deceiving his parliament as to his
,. real intentions. He had obtained from them
, a subsidy, under the pretence of supporting the i triple alliance which was used to crush one of ‘ its members. He was thanked for allowing
the laws to be put in force against dissenters, when, in fact,’ he had encouraged the violent churchmen to persecute, that indulgence might
* Burnet. Cobbett's Parl. Hist. vol. iv. p. 1166.
Y 1- Speaking of the gallant and generous Ossory, Mr. Evelyn says, “ One thing more let me note, that he often expressed to me the'abhorrence he had of that base and unworthy action he was put upon of engaging the Smyrna fleet in time of peace, in which, though he behaved himself like a great captain, yet he told me it was the only blot in ‘his life, and troubled him exceedingly. Though he was commanded, and never examined further when he was so, yet he never spoke of it without regret and detestation.” V. i. 491.
afterwards he more acceptable to the sufferers. To complete his success he had raised troops, and appeared attended to the House of Parlia
, ment by his new guards, being the first instance,
in history, of the sovereign’s entering upon his legislative functions under the protection of the sword. *
But it was not to be expected that the King’s practices with France should remain entirely secret. Colbert de Croissy communicated the intelligence to the French minister in Holland, by whom the information was made use of to induce Sweden to renounce her faithless ally. Puffendorf, the King of Sweden’s minister, carried the story to De Witt, who we may readily believe confided the intelligence to other ears besides those of Temple. Reports of the most alarming nature were spread in England; and the nation saw with regret that the triple alliance was abandoned, in order to open the way for French ambition. Nevertheless it is probable that the parliament would have enabled Charles to prosecute the war against Holland, perhaps to her ruin, had he not precipitated his measures, and endeavoured to promote the second object of the alliance before the first was gained.
Ma,.ch15_ A few’days before the 'declaration of
1672- war, he published an indulgence to dissenters and popish recusants, dispensing with the penal laws in force against them. He thought that having already secured the church party *, who, with a servility not unusual to them, supported the views of the court, he should by this step gain the dissenters; but so contrary to his hopes was the event, that when parliament met in 1673, the dissenters publicly desired their interests might not be considered by the House of Commons. An address to the Crown was voted, declaring that penal statutes, in matters ecclesiastical, cannot be suspended but by act of parliament. Clifford attacked this vote violently in the House of Lords; but .Shaftesbury, who had been made chancellor expressly to affix the great seal to the declaration, spoke in favour of the Commons’r; and the King, after saying in his first speech, “ I tell you plainly, gentlemen, I mean to stick to my declaration,” was' obliged, a few days after, to
-|~ It was during this debate that the .Duke of York, alluding to Shaftesbury, is reported to have said, “ Brother, what a rogue you have of a Lord Chancellor.” To which