« ПредишнаНапред »
Oftob. 26. 1688. THE too near Neighbourhood of Holland has
1 thrown our Administration into a violent Ague; the hot Fit and the cold quickly fucceed each other. Public. Justice is in a fluctuating Condition, it depends on the Winds and Weather, like the Rate of Infurance of Ships on their Voyages. By the Proceedings of the High CommissionCourt, we know which Way the Wind blows ;. 'tis a mere Barometer, with this Difference from the common Experiment with Mercury, that the Credit and Power of that Court rise high with a Westerly Wind, or a Storm; an Easterly Gale. finks them down to nothing. .
An old Gentleman, a Friend of mine, deter-min’d to mount in Armour for his Majesty, when, first he heard of this Invasion; he has an inveterate Enmity to the Whigs, for cutting down his. Timber in the Days of Sequestration : But indeed, this last low, little Shuffling, between Grace and Oppression, has brought him to have a very mean Opinion of the Royal Candour and Integrity, as. well as of the Wisdom and Honesty of the Counsellors: And now my Friend is resolved to wait the Event of Affairs in a whole Skin; an Alteration which I strongly suspect to have happen'd to many! and even to some of the military People. The Instability of our Councils, is a sure Symptom of a languishing Cause: A Soul. by Turns fo. temerarious and pufillanimous, as on every little Opportunity to fly out into Acts of Wrong, and on every little Check shamefully to cry, Peccavi :
Such a Soul is only fit to animate the worst of Tyrants. I think 'twas Caligula that would run and hide under the Bed when it thunder'd, buc could piss on the Statues of the Gods, when he thought the Danger was over ; and it was he too, that wish'd the People of Rome had but one Neck, that he might destroy them at a Stroke. Surely the Ministers design to pervert People from their Loyalty ; they could never else give such manifest Occasion for Defection. A Verbose Frenchman told the Cardinal de Richlieu, that God might rest the Government of the whole World on the Cardinal's Wisdom : If this Compliment were true, our Country might afford a tolerable Contrast ; for we have got Statesmen equal to the Task, if the Almighty in his Wrath should refolve to destroy the World by the Pravity of human Councils. But he that brings Good out of Evil, is yet able to save us.
Novemb. 2. 1688. T Do not wonder you should suspect me to be almost
a Whig; for 'tis most certain, I can't persuade myself to draw a Sword to destroy my Religion and Liberty : And yet I wish a Temper could be found to save both Prince and People. It is true, that there are Dangers to be apprehended from the Invader, and that must be the Case, let who will draw the Sword for us. I also agree with you, that there is no natural Connection between Popery and Slavery; that the Design of imposing both at once on this Nation, is only accidental; that a Protestant Prince may forge Chains for his
People, People, as well as a Popifh one ; that Protestant Danes are Slaves, and Popish Switzers Freemen : But thus stands our particular Cafe, Our Prince has avow'd a Design to govern without Law; the Invader disclaims that odious Project : We are certain of our Ruin on the one hand, we have some reasonable Hopes of escaping on the other.'' · It would not be easy for the Invader immediately to become absolute: That would depend upon a Standing-Army. The Power he brings won't be sufficient to effect his principal Enterprize without a large Concurrence of Englishmen; and the Officers will be generally People of Families, who will hardly on a sudden concur with Foreigners to enslave themselves; And I think the Prince's Hands will be too full of Enemies both at home and abroad, to hazard 'the Loss of his new Friends as soon as he has got them, and to provoke the fame People who invited him in, to turn him out again. No Minifters that he can employ will suddenly give fuch Advice. Even Ministers don't love Standing-Armies; don't defire to see their Prince above Law, unless they have had time enough to commit Crimes that make them afraid of Law, and glad of the Refuge of an Arbitrary Protection: They approve of, and advance an abfolute Power to protect them, only in Proportion to their own Necessities. A Man who has acquir'd a good Fortune, naturally wishes to secure his Property in it, and to transmit that Property fafe to his Pofterity: Nothing but the Terrors that attend on Guilt, can alter that Desire, and they indeed can alter it. If he knows that his injur'd Country has had Cause to demand Vengeance upon him, he verifies the Devil's Observation, All that a Man hath, will be give for his Life.
L ETTER V.
Decemb. s. 1688. W E have it from the best Authority, that,
W When a Man's Works pleafe the Lord, he maketh his Enemies to be at Peace with him. Since this is so, 'tis plain the King's Works have not pleased the Lord; for his Servants, his intimate Confidants, his very Children have deserted him. From the Highest to the Loweft ! the Prince and Princess of Denmark, the Lord Churchill, the Magistrates, the very Footmen and Common Soldiers inift for themselves, and avoid his ruin's Fortune. The Royal Sovereign's finking ; the very Rats, as by Instinet, have quit it. · The Prince of Orange must devise a Motto more expressive of Success, than, Veni, Vidi, Vici ; for he has got a potent Kingdom without striking a Stroke. And yet a Thousand of these Instances can't make weak Princes wise. Had ours been less happy on the 'firft Day of his Reign, he might perhaps have escaped his Errors and Misfortunes. His Purse was full, his People rich, his Revenue fo large, that it hardly requir'd an Addition to maintain a great Army: His Nobility and Gentry, his Clergy and Universities, his Counties and Boroughs, professed their Loyalty in the most affectionate Terms; and yet, in less than four Years time to use them all so ill, that Affection or Loyalty to him fhould hardly be found in the whole Nation! Tis prodigious !
H , who is particularly pleased with this Turn of Affairs, fays, that Waller prophesied it in his Poem on the Marriage of the Prince and
Princess of Orange, he points out these Lines for
To him who does proteet us all; .
About our The he builds a Wall;
By th’Oracle's Advice, of Wood :
Their mighty Štate till now had stood. But if Waller prophesied, he prophesied unwit. tingly, like Caiaphas the High-Priest, or perhaps like Virgil in his Pollia ; for he was too devoted to the Court, and had too little Pain for his Country, to dream of what has happen'd at this Day.
Decemb. 13. 1688. T Do not suppose that the Country is in perfect 1 Tranquillity: Our Tumults in Town certainly equal those at Conftantinople, when they depose their Sultans. I should not like, at present, to be mistaken for a Papist, much less for a Jesuit, in the Streets of London. We must never more pretend to be a civilized People, nor call the Afiaticks, nor Africans, Barbarous. 'Tis a Reproach to the Nation, that no Method is found to restrain the Licence of the raging Multitude. Not content with hunting the Priests and Friars, and demolishing their Popish Countrymen, they have violated the Law of Nations, the Character of Ambassadors has not been facred to them.
cenceing the Pelountrymen aracter of