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others. One of them, Smith, had said, that if the Parliament refused to give the Kingmoney, and continuedto press the Bill of Exclusion,

’ that was a suflicient, ground for swearing there

was a plot to seize the King. As for Sir W. Jennings and Mr. Masters, they only swore that Colledge had justified, in conversation, the par

liament of 1640; and that, in a quarrel a‘t,Ox

ford, where he had got a bloody nose, he, had said, “I have shed the first blood in the cause, but it will not be the last.” Colledge explained this, as well, as his having a sword and pistols in his possession, .by saying that he expected the Papists would attempt a massacre. Hebegged the jury to consider that he could not seize the King alone, and that no conspiracy had been proved. Jefi'ries, in speaking for the crown, impudently argued, that they must not discredit Dugdale (though, in one point, he had been clearly convicted of falsehood), as that

would be throwing a slur on the evidence for.

the Popish plot. The Chief-justice, North, in summing up, said, he would not notice the evi

dence that had been produced to discredit the ,

Witnesses, as that was a point for the jury to

decide: yet he afterwards commented on such

parts as he thought unfavourable to the pri,

soner. Colledge was found guilty, and executed

a fortnight afterwards. But the King, to display

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the royal attribute of mercy, gave permission that his quarters should be buried; a favour which he slighted, saying, with philosophical indifference, he cared not whether he was eaten up by flies or worms. ‘

Having shed the blood of CoHedge, the Court next attempted the life of Lord Shaftesbury. He was imprisoned in July, and indicted. in November. A plan of association found in his room, but without any signature, was brought forth to supply the want of evidence. 'l‘heproceedings in this case are a melancholy instance of the effects of party rancour. The witnesses whom the Court produced to prove high-treason against a man who had been High Chancellor of England, were, with one exception, the peljured wretches who, under the name of Irish witnesses, had become infamously notorious, and, on the trial of Colledge, had lost their small re, maining * credit. The only other witness was one Booth, a man who had ruined himself by a profligate course of life, and who, on this occasion, was proved to have perj.ured himself. On the other hand, the grand Fury consisted entirely of Lord Shaftesbury’s friends. They made a return of ignoramus upon the bill, and hence the term Ignoramus Jury became a bye-word against the Whigs.


. ‘'

* Two of these, of the name of Macnamara, though prepared to be witnesses against Colledge, were not produced on tfl‘at trial, as the crown lawyers found by the inspection of his papers, that he was able to destroy their testimony. Shafteebury had listened to them with too much readinessFer'gusen says that they were set to ensnare him.

(Growth qf Poperyh


The Court was convinced, by the result of this enquiry, that the strength of the opposition in the city would be a troublesome obstacle to the execution of their designs. At this ‘point, therefore, they determined to make the first attack on the liberties of England. Saunders, a learned but profligate lawyer, proposed to seize the charter of London by a process of quo warranto. The decision, in this case, rests with the judges, whose appointment was during the pleasure of the Crown. Saunders himself was made chief-justice, for the purpose, and Dolben gave place to Withers. It was thought that the charter of the metropolis, once in the hands of the Crown, other cities and towns might easily be induced to make a surrender of theirs, which were only to be returned to them with the con

dition that the King should appoint the mayor,

and oflicers of corporations. Thus a parliament

might be produced entirely subservient to the

Crown; and the sanction of Parliament, for an

independent revenue, once obtained, it would

have been: easy to lay aside the use of parlia

ments altogether. In the meantime a new alli


ance had been concluded with France, which relieved the King from any immediate necessity for money. ‘ ‘

At this period, indeed, Charles and Lewis seem to have come to a more perfect understand.ing than they had ever done before. We have frequently seen, in the course of this work, that Charles applied to Lewis for money, in order that ,“ he might not receive the law from his subjects,” or “ any longer depend on the caprice of the House of Commons.” But these supplies were not always so abundant as he could wish, and as he often‘ found it necessary to assemble Parliament, he made a skilful use of their violence against France, to frighten Lewis into larger and more certain pensions. Lewis, on the other hand, was more sparing than we should have expected in his subsidies: he seems to have been afraid of trusting Charles with unlimited authority in his dominions, lest he should prove ungrateful, and the encouragement given by France to the Opposition in Parliament, shows his policy to have been to keep the King always weak, and dependent on himself. ' But at this time he appears to have been disposed to make Charles independent of his people. In February 1681, Barillon wrote to his master, “ There remains only one difliculty, which is that of putting off for eyer the sit.tings of Parlia,



ment. 1 know very ‘well it is a security your Majesty has reason to demand, but you promised me in 1679 to consent that the Parliament should assemble, when the King of England should think. it necessary for his own interests, provided the subsidies should then cease.” Charles was now fully able to take advantage of this favourable disposition. On the 24th of March 1681, he agreed to make a private convention with France.‘ Mr. Hume found the substance of this convention, with the date of the 1st of April, in the depot at VersaillesnL The terms are, that Charles should disengage himself from the Spanish alliance ; that he should prevent parliaments from counteracting his engagement; and that he should receive two millions of livres for one year, and 500,000 crownsfor two more years. Barillon wished very'much that this convention should be signed by ‘the two princes, but they would only consent to make it a verbal agreement. The reason for his urging it, and for the refusal of Charles, is thus given by Barillon. “ It also appears to me, that this prince would not dare to make a treaty public, in which he has engaged himself not to assemble Parliament ; it would be very dangerous to his person, and entirely contrary to the laws of

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