HotFreeBooks.com
The History of England in Three Volumes, Vol.II. - From William and Mary to George II.
by Tobias Smollett
Previous Part     1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12  13  14  15  16  17  18 ... 53     Next Part
Home - Random Browse

THE INNISKILLINEES DEFEAT AND TAKE GENERAL MACARTY.

The Inniskilliners were no less remarkable than the people of Londonderry for the valour and perseverance with which they opposed the papists. They raised twelve companies, which they regimented under the command of Gustavus Hamilton, whom they chose for their governor. They proclaimed William and Mary on the eleventh day of March, and resolved in a general council to maintain their title against all opposition. The lord Gilmoy invested the castle of Groin belonging to the protestants in the neighbourhood of Inniskilling, the inhabitants of which threw succours into the place, and compelled Gilmoy to retire to Belturbet. A detachment of the garrison, commanded by lieutenant-colonel Lloyd, took and demolished the castle of Aughor, and they gained the advantage in several skirmishes with the enemy. On the day that preceded the relief of Londonderry, they defeated six thousand Irish papists at a place called Newton-Butler, and took their commander Macarty, commonly called lord Moncashel.



MEETING OF THE IRISH PARLIAMENT.

The Irish parliament being assembled at Dublin, according to the proclamation of king James, he, in a speech from the throne, thanked them for the zeal, courage, and loyalty they had manifested; extolled the generosity of the French king, who had enabled him to visit them in person; insisted upon executing his design of establishing liberty of conscience as a step equally agreeable to the dictates of humanity and discretion, and promised to concur with them in enacting such laws as would contribute to the peace, affluence, and security of his subjects. Sir Richard Neagle, being chosen speaker of the commons, moved for an address of thanks to his majesty, and that the count D'Avaux should be desired to make their acknowledgments to the most christian king for the generous assistance he had given to their sovereign. These addresses being drawn up with the concurrence of both houses, a bill was brought in to recognize the king's title, to express their abhorence of the usurpation by the prince of Orange, as well as of the defection of the English. Next day James published a declaration, complaining of the calumnies which his enemies had spread to his prejudice; expatiating upon his own impartiality in preferring his protestant subjects; his care in protecting them from their enemies, in redressing their grievances, and in granting liberty of conscience; promising that he would take no step but with the approbation of parliament; offering a free pardon to all persons who should desert his enemies and join with him in four-and-twenty days after his landing in Ireland, and charging all the blood that might be shed upon those who should continue in rebellion.

{WILLIAM AND MARY, 1688—1701.}



THE ACT OF SETTLEMENT REPEALED.

His conduct, however, very ill agreed with this declaration; nor can it be excused on any other supposition but that of his being governed, in some cases against his own inclination, by the count D'Avaux and the Irish catholics, on whom his whole dependence was placed. As both houses were chiefly filled with members of that persuasion, we ought not to wonder at their bringing in a bill for repealing the act of settlement, by which the protestants of the kingdom had been secured in the possession of their estates. These were by this law divested of their lands, which reverted to the heirs of those catholics to whom they belonged before the rebellion. This iniquitous bill was framed in such a manner, that no regard was paid to such protestant owners as had purchased estates for valuable considerations; no allowance was made for improvements, nor any provision for protestant widows; the possessor, and tenants were not even allowed to remove their stock and corn. When the bill was sent up to the lords, Dr. Dopping, bishop of Meath, opposed it with equal courage and ability, and an address in behalf of the purchasers under the act of settlement was presented to the king by the earl of Granard; but notwithstanding these remonstrances, it received the royal assent, and the protestants of Ireland were mostly ruined.



THEY PASS AN ACT OF ATTAINDER.

Yet in order to complete their destruction, an act of attainder was passed against all protestants, whether male or female, whether of high or low degree, who were absent from the kingdom, as well as against all those who retired into any part of the three kingdoms, which did not own the authority of king James, or corresponded with rebels, or were any ways aiding, abetting, or assisting them, from the first day of August in the preceding year. The number of protestants attainted by name in this act amounted to about three thousand, including two archbishops, one duke, seventeen earls, seven countesses, as many bishops, eighteen barons, three-and-thirty baronets, one-and-fifty knights, eighty-three clergymen, who were declared traitors, and adjudged to suffer the pains of death and forfeiture. The individuals subjected to this dreadful proscription, were even cut off from all hope of pardon and all benefit of appeal; for by a clause in the act, the king's pardon was deemed null unless enrolled before the first day of December. A subsequent law was enacted, declaring Ireland independent of the English parliament. This assembly passed another act, granting twenty thousand pounds per annum out of the forfeited estates to Tyrconnel, in acknowledgment of his signal services: they imposed a tax of twenty thousand pounds per month for the service of the king: the royal assent was given to an act for liberty of conscience; they enacted that the tithes payable by papists should be delivered to priests of that communion: the maintenance of the protestant clergy in cities and corporations was taken away; and all dissenters were exempted from ecclesiastical jurisdictions. So that the established church was deprived of all power and prerogative, notwithstanding the express promise of James, who had declared, immediately after his landing, that he would maintain the clergy in their rights and privileges.



JAMES COINS BASE MONEY.

Nor was the king less arbitrary in the executive part of his government, if we suppose that he countenanced the grievous acts of oppression that were daily committed upon the protestant subjects of Ireland; but the tyranny of his proceedings may be justly imputed to the temper of his ministry, consisting of men abandoned to all sense of justice and humanity, who acted from the dictates of rapacity and revenge, inflamed with all the acrimony of religious rancour. Soldiers were permitted to live upon free quarter; the people were robbed and plundered; licenses and protections were abused in order to extort money from the trading part of the nation. The king's old stores were ransacked; the shops of tradesmen and the kitchens of burghers were pillaged, to supply the mint with a quantity of brass, which was converted into current coin for his majesty's occasions; an arbitrary value was set upon it, and all persons were required and commanded to take it in payment under the severest penalties, though the proportion between its intrinsic worth and currency was nearly as one to three hundred. A vast sum of this counterfeit coin was issued in the course of one year, and forced upon the protestants in payment of merchandize, provision, and necessaries for the king's service. James, not content with the supply granted by parliament, imposed, by his own authority, a tax of twenty thousand pounds per month on chattels, as the former was laid upon lands. This seems to have been a temporary expedient during the adjournment of the two houses, as the term of the assessment was limited to three months; it was however levied by virtue of a commission under the seals, and seems to have been a stretch of prerogative the less excusable, as he might have obtained the money in a parliamentary way. Understanding that the protestants had laid out all their brass money in purchasing great quantities of hides, tallow, wool, and corn, he assumed the despotic power of fixing the prices of these commodities, and then bought them for his own use. One may see his ministers were bent upon the utter destruction of those unhappy people.



PROTESTANT CHURCHES SEIZED BY THE CATHOLICS.

All vacancies in public schools were supplied with popish teachers. The pension allowed from the exchequer to the university of Dublin was cut off; the vice-provost, fellows, and scholars, were expelled: their furniture, plate, and public library were seized without the least shadow or pretence, and in direct violation of a promise the king had made to preserve their privileges and immunities. His officers converted the college into a garrison, the chapel into a magazine, and the apartments into prisons; a popish priest was appointed provost; one Maccarty, of the same persuasion, was made library-keeper, and the whole foundation was changed into a catholic seminary. When bishoprics and benefices in the gift of the crown became vacant, the king ordered the profits to be lodged in the exchequer, and suffered the cures to be totally neglected. The revenues were chiefly employed in the maintenance of Romish bishops and priests, who grew so insolent under this indulgence, that in several places they forcibly seized the protestant churches. When complaint was made of this outrage, the king promised to do justice to the injured, and in some places actually ordered the churches to be restored; but the popish clergy refused to comply with this order, alleging, that in spirituals they owed obedience to no earthly power but the holy see, and James found himself unable to protect his protestant subjects against a powerful body which he durst not disoblige. Some ships appearing in the bay of Dublin, a proclamation was issued forbidding the protestants to assemble in any place of worship, or elsewhere, on pain of death. By a second, they were commanded to bring in their arms on pain of being treated as rebels and traitors. Luttrel, governor of Dublin, published an ordinance by beat of drum, requiring the farmers to bring in their corn for his majesty's horses within a certain day, otherwise he would order them to be hanged before their own doors. Brigadier Sarsfield commanded all protestants of a certain district to retire to the distance of ten miles from their habitations on pain of death; and in order to keep up the credit of the brass money, the same penalty was denounced, in a proclamation, against any person who should give more than one pound eighteen shillings for a guinea.



ACTION WITH THE FRENCH FLEET.

All the revenues of Ireland, and all the schemes contrived to bolster up the credit of the base coin, would have proved insufficient to support the expenses of the war, had not James received occasional supplies from the French monarch. After the return of the fleet which had conveyed him to Ireland, Louis sent another strong squadron, commanded by Chateau Benault, as a convoy to some transports laden with arms, ammunition, and a large sum of money for the use of king James. Before they sailed from Brest, king William, being informed of their destination, detached admiral Herbert from Spithead with twelve ships of the line, one fire-ship, and four tenders, in order to intercept the enemy. He was driven by stress of weather into Mil-ford-haven, from whence he steered his course to Kin-sale, on the supposition that the French fleet had sailed from Brest, and that in all probability he should fall in with them on the coast of Ireland. On the first day of May he discovered them at anchor in Bantry-bay, and stood in to engage them, though they were greatly superior to him in number. They no sooner perceived him at day-break, than they weighed, stood out to windward, formed their line, bore down, and began the action, which was maintained for two hours with equal valour on both sides, though the English fleet sustained considerable damage from the superior fire of the enemy. Herbert tacked several times in hope of gaining the weather-gage; but the French admiral kept his wind with uncommon skill and perseverance. At length the English squadron stood off to sea, and maintained a running fight till five in the afternoon, when Chateau Renault tacked about and returned into the bay, content with the honour he had gained. The loss of men was inconsiderable on both sides; and where the odds were so great, the victor could not reap much glory. Herbert retired to the isles of Scilly, where he expected a reinforcement; but being disappointed in this expectation, he returned to Portsmouth in very ill humour, with which his officers and men were infected. The common sailors still retained some attachment to James, who had formerly been a favourite among them; and the officers complained that they had been sent upon this service with a force so much inferior to that of the enemy. King William, in order to appease their discontent, made an excursion to Portsmouth, where he dined with the admiral on board the ship Elizabeth, declared his intention of making him an earl in consideration of his good conduct and services, conferred the honour of knighthood on the captains Ashby and Shovel, and bestowed a donation of ten shillings on every private sailor.



DIVERS SENTENCES REVERSED.

The parliament of England thought it incumbent upon them not only to raise supplies for the maintenance of the war in which the nation was involved, but also to do justice with respect to those who had been injured by illegal or oppressive sentences in the late reigns. The attainders of lord Russel, Algernon Sidney, alderman Cornish, and lady Lisle, were now reversed. A committee of privileges was appointed by the lords to examine the case of the earl of Devonshire, who in the late reign had been fined thirty thousand pounds for assaulting colonel Culpepper in the presence-chamber. They reported that the court of king's bench, in overruling the earl's plea of privilege of parliament, had committed a manifest breach of privilege; that the fine was excessive and exhorbitant, against the great charter, the common right of the subject, and the law of the realm. The sentence pronounced upon Samuel Johnson, chaplain to lord Russel, in consequence of which he had been degraded, fined, scourged, and set in the pillory, was now annulled, and the commons recommended him to his majesty for some ecclesiastical preferment. He received one thousand pounds in money, with a pension of three hundred pounds for his own life and that of his son, who was moreover gratified with a place of one hundred pounds a year; but the father never obtained any ecclesiastical benefice. Titus Oates seized this opportunity of petitioning the house of lords for a reversal of the judgments given against him on his being convicted of perjury. The opinions of all the judges and counsel at the bar were heard on this subject, and a bill of reversal passed the commons; but the peers having inserted some amendments and a proviso, a conference was demanded, and violent heats ensued. Oates, however, was released from confinement, and the lords, with the consent of the commons, recommended him to his majesty for a pardon, which he obtained, together with a comfortable pension. The committee appointed to inquire into the cases of the state-prisoners, found sir Robert Wright, late lord chief justice, to have been concerned in the cruelties committed in the west after the insurrection of Monmouth; as also one of the ecclesiastical commissioners, and guilty of manifold enormities. Death had by this time delivered Jefferies from the resentment of the nation. Graham and Burton had acted as solicitors in the illegal prosecutions carried on against those who opposed the court in the reign of Charles II.; these were now reported guilty of having been instrumental in taking away the lives and estates of those who had suffered the loss of either under colour of law for eight years last past; of having, by malicious indictments, informations, and prosecutions of quo warranto, endeavoured the subversion of the protestant religion, and the government of the realm; and of having wasted many thousand pounds of the public revenue in the course of their infamous practices.



INQUIRY INTO THE CAUSE OF MISCARRIAGES IN IRELAND.

Nor did the misconduct of the present ministry escape the animadversion of the parliament. The lords having addressed the king to put the Isle of Wight, Jersey, Guernsey, Scilly, Dover-castle, and the other fortresses of the kingdom, in a posture of defence, and to disarm the papists, empowered a committee to inquire into the miscarriages in Ireland, which were generally imputed to the neglect of the marquisses of Caermarthan and Halifax. They presented an address to the king, desiring the minute-book of the committee for Irish affairs might be put into their hands; but his majesty declined gratifying them in this particular: then the commons voted that those persons who had advised the king to delay this satisfaction were enemies to the kingdom. William, alarmed at this resolution, allowed them to inspect the book, in which they found very little for their purpose. The house resolved, that an address should be presented to his majesty, declaring that the succour of Ireland had been retarded by unnecessary delays; that the transports prepared were not sufficient to convey the forces to that kingdom; and that several ships had been taken by the enemy, for want of proper convoy. At the same time the question was put, whether or not they should address the king against the marquis of Halifax. But it was carried in the negative by a small majority. Before this period, Howe, vice-chamberlain to the queen, had moved for an address against such counsellors as had been impeached in parliament, and betrayed the liberties of the nation. This motion was levelled at Caemarthen and Halifax, the first of whom had been formerly impeached of high treason, under the title of earl of Danby; and the other was charged with all the misconduct of the present administration. Warm debates ensued, and in all probability the motion would have been carried in the affirmative, had not those who spoke warmly in behalf it suddenly cooled in the course of the dispute. Some letters from king James to his partisans being intercepted, and containing some hints of an intended invasion, Mr. Hambden, chairman of the committee of the whole house, enlarged upon the imminent danger to which the kingdom was exposed, and moved for a further supply to his majesty. In this unexpected motion he was not seconded by one member. The house, however, having taken the letters into consideration, resolved to draw up an address to the king, desiring him to secure and disarm all papists of note; and they brought in a bill for attainting several persons in rebellion against their majesties; but it was not finished during this session.

{WILLIAM AND MARY, 1688—1701.}



BILLS PASSED IN THIS SESSION.

Another bill being prepared in the house of lords, enjoining the subjects to wear the woollen manufacture at certain seasons of the year, a petition was presented against it by the silk-weavers of London and Canterbury, assembled in a tumultuous manner at Westminster. The lords refused their petition, because this was an unusual manner of application. They were persuaded to return to their respective places of abode; precautions were taken against a second riot; and the bill was unanimously rejected in the upper house. This parliament passed an act, vesting in the two universities the presentations belonging to papists: those of the southern counties being given to Oxford; and those of the northern to Cambridge, on certain specified conditions, Courts of conscience were erected at Bristol, Gloucester, and Newcastle; and that of the marches of Wales was abolished as an intolerable oppression. The protestant clergymen, who had been forced to leave their benefices in Ireland, were rendered capable of holding any living in England, without forfeiting their title to their former preferment, with the proviso that they should resign their English benefices when restored to 'those they had been obliged to relinquish. The statute of Henry IV. against multiplying gold and silver was now repealed; the subjects were allowed to melt and refine metals and ores, and extract gold and silver from them, on condition that it should be brought to the Mint, and converted into money, the owners receiving its full value in current coin. These, and several other bills of smaller importance being passed, the two houses adjourned to the twentieth clay of September, and afterwards to the nineteenth day of October.



CHAPTER II.

Duke of Schomberg lands with an Army in Ireland..... The Inniskilliners obtain a Victory over the Irish..... Schomberg censured for his Inactivity..... The French worsted at Walcourt..... Success of the Confederates in Germany..... The Turks defeated at Pacochin, Nissa, and Widen..... Death of Pope Innocent XI..... .King William becomes unpopular..... A good Number of the Clergy refuse to take the Oaths..... The King grants a Commission for reforming Church Discipline..... Meeting of the Convocation..... Their Session discontinued by repeated Prorogations..... Proceedings in Parliament..... The Whigs obstruct the Bill of Indemnity..... The Commons resume the Inquiry into the Cause of the Miscarriages in Ireland..... King William irritated against the Whigs..... Plot against the Government by Sir James Montgomery discovered by Bishop Burnet..... Warm Debates in Parliament about the Corporation Bills..... The King resolves to finish the Irish War in Person ..... General Ludlow arrives in England, but is obliged to withdraw..... Efforts of the Jacobites in Scotland..... The Court Interest triumphs over all Opposition in that Country..... The Tory Interest prevails in the New Parliament of England..... Bill for recognising their Majesties..... Another violent Contest about the Bill of Abjuration..... King William lands in Ireland..... King James marches to the Boyne..... William resolves to give him battle..... Battle of the Boyne..... Death and Character of Schomberg..... James embarks for France..... William enters Dublin and publishes his Declaration..... The French obtain a Victory over the English and Dutch Fleets off Beachy- head..... Torrington committed Prisoner to the Tower..... Progress of William in Ireland..... He Invests Limerick; but is obliged to raise the Siege, and returns to England..... Cork and Kinsale reduced by the Earl of Marlborough ..... Lausun and the French Forces quit Ireland..... The Duke of Savoy joins the Confederacy..... Prince Waldeck defeated at Fleurus..... The Archduke Joseph elected King of the Romans..... Death of the Duke of Lorrain..... Progress of the War against the Turks..... Meeting of the Parliament..... The Commons comply with all the King's Demands..... Petition of the Tories in the City of London..... Attempt against the Marquis of Caermarthen..... The King's Voyage to Holland..... He assists at a Congress..... Returns to England.

{WILLIAM AND MARY, 1688—1701.}



SCHOMBERG LANDS WITH AN ARMY.

Though the affairs of Ireland were extremely pressing, and the protestants of that country had made repeated application for relief, the succours were retarded either by disputes among the ministers, or the neglect of those who had the management of the expedition, in such a manner that king James had been six months in Ireland before the army was embarked for that kingdom. At length eighteen regiments of infantry, and five of dragoons, being raised for that service, a train of artillery provided, and transports prepared, the duke of Sehomberg, on whom king William had conferred the chief command of this armament, set out for Chester, after he had in person thanked the commons for the uncommon regard they had paid to his services, and received assurances from the house, that they would pay particular attention to him and his army. On the thirteenth day of August he landed in the neighbourhood of Carrickfergus with about ten thousand foot and dragoons, and took possession of Belfast, from whence the enemy retired at his approach to Carrickfergus, where they resolved to make a stand. The duke having refreshed his men, marched thither, and invested the place; the siege was carried on till the twenty-sixth clay of the month, when the breaches being practicable, the besieged capitulated, on condition of marching out with their arms, and as much baggage as they could carry on their backs; and of their being conducted to the next Irish garrison, which was at Newry. During this siege the duke was joined by the rest of his army from England; but he had left orders for conveying the greater part of the artillery and stores from Chester directly to Carlingford. He now began his march through Lisburne and Hillsborough, and encamped at Drummore, where the protestants of the north had been lately routed by Hamilton; thence he proceeded to Loughbrillane, where he was joined by the horse and dragoons of Inniskilling. Then the enemy abandoned Newry and Dundalk, in the neighbourhood of which Sehomberg encamped on a low damp ground, having the town and river on the south, and surrounded on every other part by hills, bogs, and mountains.



THE INNISKILLINERS OBTAIN A VICTORY.

His army, consisting chiefly of new-raised men little inured to hardship, began to flag under the fatigue of marching, the inclemency of the weather, and scarcity of provisions. Here he was reinforced by the regiments of Kirke, Hanmer, and Stuart; and would have continued his march to Drogheda, where he understood Rosene lay with about twenty thousand men, had he not been obliged to wait for the artillery, which was not yet arrived at Carlingford. King James, having assembled all his forces, advanced towards Schomberg, and appeared before his intrenchments in order of battle; but the duke, knowing they were greatly superior in number of horse, and that his own army was undisciplined, and weakened by death and sickness, restrained his men within the lines, and in a little time the enemy retreated. Immediately after their departure, a conspiracy was discovered in the English camp, hatched by some French papists, who had insinuated themselves into the protestant regiments. One of these, whose name was Du Plessis, had written a letter to the ambassador D'Avaux, promising to desert with all the papists of the three French regiments in Schomberg's army. This letter being found, Du Plessis and five accomplices were tried by a court-martial, and executed. About two hundred and fifty papists being discovered in the French regiments, they were sent over to England, from thence to Holland. While Schomberg remained in this situation, the Inniskilliners made excursions in the neighbourhood, under the command of colonel Lloyd; and on the twenty-seventh day of September they obtained a complete victory over five times their number of the Irish. They killed seven hundred on the spot, and took O'Kelly their commander, with about fifty officers, and a considerable booty of cattle. The duke was so pleased with their behaviour on this occasion, that they received a very honourable testimony of his approbation.



SCHOMBERG CENSURED.

Meanwhile, the enemy took possession of James-Town, and reduced Sligo, one of the forts of which was gallantly defended by St. Sauver, a French captain, and his company of grenadiers, until he was obliged to capitulate for want of water and provisions. A contagious distemper still continued to rage in Schomberg's camp, and swept off a great number of officers and soldiers; so that in the beginning of next spring, not above half the number of those who went over with the general remained alive. He was censured for his inactivity, and the king, in repeated letters, desired him to hazard an engagement, provided any opportunity should occur; but he did not think proper to run the risk of a battle, against an enemy that was above thrice his number, well disciplined, healthy, and conducted by able officers. Nevertheless, he was certainly blameable for having chosen such an unwholesome situation. At the approach of winter he retired into quarters, in hopes of being reinforced with seven thousand Danes, who had already arrived in Britain. These auxiliaries were stipulated in a treaty which William had just concluded with the king of Denmark. The English were not more successful at sea than they had proved in their operations by land. Admiral Herbert, now created earl of Torrington, having sailed to Ireland with the combined squadrons of England and Holland, made a fruitless attempt upon Cork, and lost a great number of seamen by sickness, which was imputed to bad provisions. The Dartmouth ship of war fell into the hands of the enemy, who infested the channel with such a number of armed ships and privateers, that the trade of England sustained incredible damage.



THE FRENCH WORSTED AT WALCOURT.

The affairs of France wore but a gloomy aspect on the continent, where all the powers of Europe seemed to have conspired her destruction. King William had engaged in a new league with the states-general, in which former treaties of peace and commerce were confirmed. It was stipulated, that in case the king of Great Britain should be attacked, the Dutch should assist him with six thousand infantry, and twenty ships of the line; and that, provided hostilities should be committed against the states-general, England should supply them with ten thousand infantry, and twenty ships of war. This treaty was no sooner ratified, than king William dispatched the lord Churchill, whom he had by this time created earl of Marlborough, to Holland, in order to command the British auxiliaries in that service to the number of eleven thousand, the greater part of which had been in the army of king James when the prince of Orange landed in England. The earl forthwith joined the Dutch army, under the command of prince Waldeck, who had fixed his rendezvous in the county of Liege, with a view to act against the French army commanded by the mareschal D'Humieres; while the prince of Vaudemont headed a little army of observation, consisting of Spaniards, Dutch, and Germans, to watch the motions of Calvo in another part of the Low-Countries. The city of Liege was compelled to renounce the neutrality, and declare for the allies. Mareschal D'Humieres attacked the foragers belonging to the army of the states at Walcourt, in the month of August; an obstinate engagement ensued, and the French were obliged to retreat in confusion, with the loss of two thousand men, and some pieces of artillery. The army of observation levelled part of the French lines on the side of Courtray, and raised contributions on the territories of the enemy.



SUCCESS OF THE CONFEDERATES IN GERMANY.

The French were almost entire masters of the three ecclesiastical electorates of Germany. They possessed Mentz, Triers, Bonne, Keiserswaert, Philipsburgh, and Landau. They had blown up the castle of Heildelberg, in the Palatinate, and destroyed Manheim. They had reduced Worms and Spiers to ashes; and demolished Frankendahl, together with several other fortresses. These conquests, the fruits of sudden invasion, were covered with a numerous army, commanded by the mareschal de Duras; and all his inferior generals were officers of distinguished courage and ability. Nevertheless, he found it difficult to maintain his ground against the different princes of the empire. The duke of Lorraine, who commanded the imperial troops, invested Mentz, and took it by capitulation; the elector of Brandenburgh, having reduced Keiserswaert, undertook the siege of Bonne, which the garrison surrendered after having made a long and vigorous defence. Nothing contributed more to the union of the German princes than their resentment of the shocking barbarity with which the French had plundered, wasted, and depopulated their country. Louis having, by his intrigues in Poland and at Constantinople, prevented a pacification between the emperor and the Ottoman Porte, the campaign was opened in Croatia, where five thousand Turks were defeated by a body of Croates between Vihitz and Novi. The prince of Baden, who commanded the imperialists on that side, having thrown a bridge over the Morava at Passarowitz, crossed that river, and marched in quest of a Turkish army amounting to fifty thousand men, headed by a seraskier. On the thirteenth day of August he attacked the enemy in their intrenchments near Patochin, and forced their lines, routed them with great slaughter, and took possession of their camp, baggage, and artillery. They returned to Nissa, where the general finding them still more numerous than the imperialists, resolved to make a stand, and encamped in a situation that was inaccessible in every part except the rear, which he left open for the convenience of a retreat. Through this avenue he was, on the twenty-fourth day of September, attacked by the prince of Baden, who, after a desperate resistance, obtained another complete victory, enriched his troops with the spoil of the enemy, and entered Nissa without opposition. There he found above three thousand horses and a vast quantity of provisions. Having reposed his army for a few days in this place, he resumed his march against the Turks, who had chosen an advantageous post at Widen, and seemed ambitious of retrieving the honour they had lost in the two former engagements. The Germans attacked their lines without hesitation; and though the Musselmen fought with incredible fury, they were a third time defeated with great slaughter. This defeat was attended with the loss of Widen, which being surrendered to the victor, he distributed his troops in winter quarters, and returned to Vienna covered with laurels.



DEATH OF POPE INNOCENT XI.

The French were likewise baffled in their attempt upon Catalonia, where the duke de Noailles had taken Campredon in the month of May. Leaving a garrison in this place, he retreated to the frontiers of France, while the duke de Villa Hermosa, at the head of a Spanish army, blocked up the place and laid Rousillon under contribution. He afterwards undertook the siege in form, and Noailles marched to its relief; but he was so hard pressed by the Spaniards that he withdrew the garrison, dismantled the place, and retreated with great precipitation. The French king hoped to derive some considerable advantage from the death of Pope Innocent XL which happened on the twelfth day of August. That pontiff had been an inveterate enemy to Louis ever since the affair of the franchises, and the seizure of Avignon. [016] [See note F, at the end of this Vol.] Cabals were immediately formed at Eome by the French faction against the Spanish and Imperial interest. The French cardinals, de Bouillon and Bonzi, accompanied by Furstemberg, repaired to Eome with a large sum of money. Peter Ottoboni, a Venetian, was elected pope, and assumed the name of Alexander VIII. The duke de Chaulnes, ambassador from France, immediately signified in the name of his master, that Avignon should be restored to the patrimony of the church; and Louis renounced the franchises in a letter written by his own hand to the pontiff. Alexander received these marks of respect with the warmest acknowledgments; but when the ambassador and Furstemberg besought him to re-examine the election of the bishop of Cologne, which had been the source of so much calamity to the empire, he lent a deaf ear to their solicitations. He even confirmed the dispensations granted by his predecessor to the prince of Bavaria, who was thus empowered to take possession of the electorate, though he had not yet attained the age required by the canons. Furstemberg retired in disgust to Paris, where Louis immediately gratified him with the abbey of St. Germains.

{WILLIAM AND MARY, 1688—1701.}



KING WILLIAM BECOMES UNPOPULAR.

King William found it an easier task to unite the councils of Europe against the common enemy than to conciliate and preserve the affections of his own subjects, among whom he began visibly to decline in point of popularity. Many were dissatisfied with his measures; and a great number even of those who exerted themselves for his elevation had conceived a disgust from his personal deportment, which was very unsuitable to the manners and disposition of the English people. Instead of mingling with his nobility in social amusements and familiar conversation, he maintained a disagreeable reserve which had all the air of sullen pride; he seldom or never spoke to his courtiers or attendants, he spent his time chiefly in the closet retired from all communication; or among his troops in a camp he had formed at Hounslow; or in the exercise of hunting, to which he was immoderately addicted. This had been prescribed to him by physicians as necessary to improve his constitution, which was naturally weak, and by practice had become so habitual that he could not lay it aside. His ill health co-operating with his natural aversion to society, produced a peevishness which could not fail of being displeasing to those who were near his person: this was increased by the disputes in his cabinet, and the opposition of those who were professed enemies to his government, as well as by the alienation of his former friends. As he could not breathe without difficulty in the air of London, he resided chiefly at Hampton-court, and expended considerable sums in beautifying and enlarging that palace; he likewise purchased the house at Kensington of the earl of Nottingham; and such profusion in the beginning of an expensive war gave umbrage to the nation in general. Whether he was advised by his counsellors, or his own sagacity pointed out the expediency of conforming with the English humour, he now seemed to change his disposition, and in some measure adopt the manners of his predecessors. In imitation of Charles II. he resorted to the races at Newmarket; he accepted an invitation to visit Cambridge, where he behaved himself with remarkable affability to the members of the university; he afterwards dined with the lord-mayor of London, accepted the freedom of the city, and condescended so far as to become sovereign-master of the company of grocers.



A GOOD NUMBER OF THE CLERGY REFUSE TO TAKE THE OATHS.

While William thus endeavoured to remove the prejudices which had been conceived against his person, the period arrived which the parliament had prescribed for taking the oaths to the new government. Some individuals of the clergy sacrificed their benefices to their scruples of conscience, and absolutely refused to take oaths that were contrary to those they had already sworn in favour of their late sovereign. These were distinguished by the epithet of nonjurors: but their number bore a very small proportion to that of others, who took them with such reservations and distinctions as redounded very little to the honour of their integrity. Many of those who had been the warmest advocates for non-resistance and passive obedience, made no scruple of renouncing their allegiance to king James, and complying with the present act, after having declared that they took the oaths in no other sense than that of a peaceable submission to the powers that were. They even affirmed that the legislature itself had allowed the distinction between a king de facto and a king de jure, as they had dropped the word "rightful" when the form was under debate. They alleged that as prudence obliged them to conform to the letter of the oath, so conscience required them to give it their own interpretation. Nothing could be more infamous and of worse tendency than this practice of equivocating in the most sacred of all obligations. It introduced a general disregard of oaths, which hath been the source of universal perjury and corruption. Though this set of temporizers were bitterly upbraided both by the nonjurors and the papists, they all concurred in representing William as an enemy to the church; as a prince educated in the doctrines of Calvin, which he plainly espoused, by limiting his favour and preferment to such as were latitudinarians in religion, and by his abolishing episcopacy in Scotland. The presbyterians in that kingdom now tyrannized in their turn. They were headed by the earl of Crawford, a nobleman of a violent temper and strong prejudices. He was chosen president of the parliament by the interest of Melvil, and oppressed the episcopalians in such a manner that the greater part of them from resentment became well-wishers to king James. Every circumstance of the hardships they underwent was reported in England; and the earl of Clarendon, as well as the suspended bishops, circulated these particulars with great assiduity. The oaths being rejected by the archbishop of Canterbury, the bishops of Ely, Chichester, Bath and Wells, Peterborough and Gloucester, they were suspended from their functions, and threatened with deprivation. Lake of Chichester, being seized with a dangerous distemper, signed a solemn declaration, in which he professed his adherence to the doctrine of non-resistance and passive obedience, which he believed to be the distinguishing characteristic of the church of England. After his death this paper was published, industriously circulated, and extolled by the party as an inspired oracle pronounced by a martyr to religious truth and sincerity.



THE KING GRANTS A COMMISSION FOR REFORMING CHURCH DISCIPLINE.

All the clamour that was raised against the king could not divert him from prosecuting the scheme of comprehension. He granted a commission under the great seal to ten bishops and twenty dignitaries of the church, authorizing them to meet from time to time in the Jerusalem chamber, to prepare such alterations of the liturgy and the canons, and such proposals for the reformation of ecclesiastical courts as might most conduce to the good order, edification, and uniting of the church, and tend to reconcile all religious differences among the protestant subjects of the kingdom. A cry was immediately raised against this commission, as an ecclesiastical court illegal and dangerous. At their first meeting the authority of the commission was questioned by Sprat, bishop of Rochester, who retired in disgust, and was followed by Mew of Winchester, and the doctors Jane and Aldrich. These were averse to any alteration of the forms and constitution of the church in favour of an insolent and obstinate party, which ought to have been satisfied with the toleration they enjoyed. They observed that an attempt to make such alteration would divide the clergy, and bring the liturgy into disesteem with the people, as it would be a plain acknowledgment that it wanted correction. They thought they should violate the dignity of the church by condescending to make offers which the dissenters were at liberty to refuse; and they suspected some of their colleagues of a design to give up episcopal ordination—a step inconsistent with their honour, duty, oaths, and subscriptions.



MEETING OF THE CONVOCATION.

The commissioners, notwithstanding this secession, proceeded to debate with moderation on the abuses of which the dissenters had complained, and corrected every article that seemed liable to any just objection; but the opposite party employed all their art and industry to inflame the minds of the people. The two universities declared against all alterations, and those who promoted them. The king himself was branded as an enemy to the hierarchy; and they bestirred themselves so successfully in the election of members for the convocation, that they procured a very considerable majority. At their first meeting the friends of the comprehension scheme proposed Dr. Tillotson, clerk of the closet to his majesty, as prolocutor; but the other party carried it in favour of Dr. Jane, who was counted the most violent churchman in the whole Assembly. In a Latin speech to the bishop of London as president, he, in the name of the lower house, asserted that the liturgy of England needed no amendment, and concluded with the old declaration of the barons, "Nolumus leges Angliae mutari. We will not suffer the laws of England to be changed." The bishop, in his reply, exhorted them to moderation, charity, and indulgence towards their brethren the dissenters, and to make such abatements in things indifferent as might serve to open a door of salvation to multitudes of straying christians. His injunctions, however, produced no favourable effect; the lower house seemed to be animated by a spirit of opposition. Next day the president prorogued them, on pretence that the royal commission, by which they were to act, was defective for want of being sealed, and that a prorogation was necessary until that sanction should be obtained. In this interval means were used to mollify their non-compliant tempers, but all endeavours proved ineffectual. When they met again, the earl of Nottingham delivered the king's commission to both houses, with a speech of his own, and a message from his majesty, importing that he had summoned them out of a pious zeal to do every thing that might tend to the best establishment of the church of England, which should always enjoy his favour and protection. He exhorted them to lay aside all prejudice, and consider calmly and impartially whatever should be proposed: he assured them he would offer nothing but what should be for the honour, peace, and advantage of the protestant religion in general, and particularly of the church of England.

{WILLIAM AND MARY, 1688—1701.}



THEIR SESSION PROROGUED.

The bishops adjourning to the Jerusalem chamber, prepared a zealous address of thanks to his majesty, which, being sent to the lower house for their concurrence, met with violent opposition. Amendments were proposed; a conference ensued, and, after warm debates, they agreed upon a cold address, which was accordingly presented. The majority of the lower house, far from taking any measures in favour of dissenters, converted all their attention to the relief of their nonjuring brethren. Zealous speeches were made in behalf of the suspended bishops; and Dr. Jane proposed that something might be done to qualify them to sit in the convocation. This, however, was such a dangerous point as they would not venture to discuss; yet, rather than proceed upon the business for which they had been assembled, they began to take cognizance of some pamphlets lately published, which they conceived to be of dangerous consequence to the christian religion. The president and his party, perceiving the disposition of the house, did not think proper to communicate any proposal touching the intended reformation, and the king suffered the session to be discontinued by repeated prorogations.



PROCEEDINGS IN PARLIAMENT.

The parliament meeting on the nineteenth day of October, the king, in a speech of his own composing, explained the necessity of a present supply to carry on the war. He desired that they might be speedy in their determinations on this subject, for these would in a great measure influence the deliberations of the princes and states concerned in the war against France, as a general meeting of them was appointed to be held next month at the Hague, to settle the operations of the ensuing campaign. He concluded with recommending the dispatch of a bill of indemnity, that the minds of his subjects might be quieted, and that they might unanimously concur in promoting the honour and welfare of the kingdom. As several inflammatory bills and disputes, which had produced heats and animosities in the last session, were still depending, the king, after having consulted both houses, resolved to put an end to those disputes by a prorogation. He accordingly went to the house of lords and prorogued the parliament till the twenty-first day of October, by the mouth of the new speaker, sir Robert Atkins; the marquis of Halifax having resigned that office. When they re-assembled, the king referred them to his former speech: then the commons unanimously resolved to assist his majesty in reducing Ireland, and in joining with his allies abroad for a vigorous prosecution of the war against France: for these purposes they voted a supply of two millions.



THE WHIGS OBSTRUCT THE INDEMNITY BILL.

During this session the whigs employed all their influence and intrigues in obstructing the bill of indemnity, which they knew would open a door for favour and preferment to the opposite party, which began to gain ground in the king's good graces. With this view they revived the prosecution of the state prisoners. A committee was appointed to prepare a charge against Burton and Graham. The commons resolved to impeach the earls of Peterborough, Salisbury, and Castlemain, sir Edward Hales, and Obadiah Walker, of high treason, for having been reconciled to the church of Rome, contrary to the laws of the realm. A bill was ordered to be brought in to declare the estate of the late lord chancellor Jefferies forfeited to the crown, and attaint his blood; but it met with such opposition that the measure was dropped: the house however agreed, that the pecuniary penalties incurred by those persons who had exercised offices contrary to the laws against popish recusants, should be speedily levied and applied to the public service. The lord Griffin being detected in maintaining a correspondence with king James and his partizans, was committed to the Tower; but as no other evidence appeared against him than written letters, found in the false bottom of a pewter bottle, they could not help consenting to his being released upon bail, as they had lately resolved that Algernon Sidney was unjustly condemned in the reign of Charles II. because nothing but writings had been produced against him at his trial. The two houses concurred in appointing a committee to inquire who were the advisers and prosecutors in taking away the lives of lord Russel, colonel Sydney, sir Thomas Armstrong, alderman Cornish, and others; and who were chiefly concerned in the arbitrary practices touching the writs of quo warranto, and the surrender of charters. This inquiry was levelled at the marquis of Halifax, who had concurred with the ministry of Charles in all these severities. Though no proof appeared upon which votes or addresses could be founded, that nobleman saw it was necessary for him to withdraw himself from the administration; he therefore resigned the privy-seal, which was put in commission, and reconciled himself to the tories, of whom he became the patron and protector.



INQUIRY INTO THE CAUSE OF THE MISCARRIAGES IN IRELAND RESUMED.

The commons likewise resumed the examination of the miscarriages in Ireland, and desired the king would appoint commissioners to go over and inquire into the condition of the army in that kingdom. Schomberg, understanding that he had been blamed in the house of commons for his inactivity, transmitted to the king a satisfactory vindication of his own conduct; and it appeared that the miscarriages in Ireland were wholly owing to John Shales, purveyor-general to the army. The commons immediately presented an address to his majesty, praying that Shales might be taken into custody; that all his papers, accounts, and stores, should be secured; and that duke Schomberg might be empowered to fill his place with a more able purveyor. The king gave them to understand that he had already sent orders to the general for that purpose. Nevertheless, they in another petition requested his majesty to name those who had recommended Shales to his service, as he had exercised the same office under king James, and was suspected of treasonable practices against the government. William declined gratifying their request; but he afterwards sent a message to the house, desiring them to recommend a certain number of commissioners to superintend such provisions and preparations as might be necessary for that service, as well as to nominate certain persons to go over and examine the state of the army in Ireland. The commons were so mollified by this instance of his condescension, that they left the whole affair to his own direction, and proceeded to examine other branches of misconduct. Instances of mismanagement appeared so numerous and so flagrant, that they resolved upon a subsequent address, to explain the ill conduct and success of his army and navy; to desire he would find out the author of these miscarriages, and for the future intrust unsuspected persons with the management of affairs. They ordered the victuallers of the fleet to be taken into custody, on suspicion of their having furnished the navy with unwholesome provisions, and new commissioners were appointed. Bitter reproaches were thrown out against the ministry. Mr. Hambden expressed his surprise that the administration should consist of those very persons whom king James had employed, when his affairs were desperate, to treat with the prince of Orange, and moved that the king should be petitioned in an address to remove such persons from his presence and councils. This was a stroke aimed at the earl of Nottingham, whose office of secretary Hambden desired to possess; but his motion was not seconded, the court-members observing that James did not depute these lords to the prince of Orange because they were attached to his own interest, but for a very different reason, namely, that they were well known to disapprove of his measures, and therefore would be the more agreeable to his highness. The house however voted an address to the king, desiring that the authors of the miscarriages might be brought to condign punishment.

{WILLIAM AND MARY, 1688—1701.}



WILLIAM IRRITATED AGAINST THE WHIGS.

In the sequel, the question was proposed, Whether a placeman ought to have a seat in the house? and a very warm debate ensued: but it was carried in the affirmative, on the supposition that by such exclusion the commonwealth would be deprived of some of the ablest senators of the kingdom. But what chiefly irritated William against the whigs was their backwardness in promoting the public service, and their disregard of the earnest desire he expressed to see his revenue settled for life. He said his title was no more than a pageant, and the worst of all governments was that of a king without treasure. Nevertheless, they would not grant the civil list for a longer term than one year. They began to think there was something arbitrary in his disposition. His sullen behaviour in all probability first infused this opinion, which was strengthened and confirmed by the insinuations of his enemies. The Scots who had come up to London to give an account of the proceedings in their parliament, were infected with the same notion. One Simpson, a presbyterian of that country, whom the earl of Portland employed as a spy, had insinuated himself into the confidence of Nevil Payne, an active and intelligent partisan and agent of king James; by which means he supplied the earl with such intelligence as raised him to some degree of credit with that minister. This he used in prepossessing the earl against the king's best friends, and infusing jealousies which were soon kindled into mutual distrust and animosity.



PLOT AGAINST THE GOVERNMENT.

Sir James Montgomery, who had been a warm advocate for the revolution, received advice that the court suspected him and others of disaffection, and was employed in seeking evidence by which they might be prosecuted. They were equally alarmed and incensed at this intimation, and Payne seized the opportunity of seducing them into a correspondence with the exiled king. They demanded the settlement of the presbytery in Scotland, and actually engaged in a treaty for his restoration. They reconciled themselves to the duke of Queensbury, and the other noblemen of the episcopal party: they wrote to James for a supply of money, arms, and ammunition, together with a reinforcement of three thousand men from Dunkirk. Montgomery had acquired great interest among the whigs of England, and this he-employed in animating them against the king and the ministry. He represented them as a set of wicked men, who employed infamous spies to insnare and ruin the fast friends of the government, and found means to alienate them so much from William, that they began to think in earnest of recalling their banished prince The duke of Bolton and the earl of Monmouth were almost persuaded into a conspiracy for this purpose; they seemed to think James was now so well convinced of his former errors, that they might trust him without scruple. Montgomery and Payne were the chief managers of the scheme, and they admitted Ferguson into their councils, as a veteran in the arts of treason. In order to blast William's credit in the city, they circulated a report that James would grant a full indemnity, separate himself entirely from the French interest, and be contented with a secret connivance in favour of the Roman catholics. Montgomery's brother assured the bishop of Salisbury that a treaty with king James was absolutely concluded, and an invitation subscribed by the whole cabal. He said this paper would be sent to Ireland by the way of France, as the direct communication was difficult; and he proposed a method for seizing it before it should be conveyed out of the kingdom. Williamson, the supposed bearer of it, had obtained a pass for Flanders, and a messenger being sent in pursuit of him, secured his clothes and portmanteau; but after a very strict examination nothing appeared to justify the intelligence. Williamson had previously delivered the papers to Simpson, who hired a boat at Deal, and arrived in safety at France. He returned with large assurances, and twelve thousand pounds were remitted to the Scottish undertakers. Montgomery the informer seeing his intelligence falsified, lost his credit with the bishop, and dreading the resentment of the other party, retired to the continent. The conspirators loudly complained of the false imputations they had incurred. The pretended discoveries were looked upon as fictions of the ministry, and the king on this occasion suffered greatly in the opinion of his subjects.

{WILLIAM AND MARY, 1688—1701.}



DEBATES ABOUT THE CORPORATION BILLS.

The tories still continued to carry on a secret negotiation with the court. They took advantage of the ill-humour subsisting between the king and the whigs; and promised large supplies of money provided this parliament should be dissolved and another immediately convoked. The opposite party, being apprized of their intention, brought a bill into the house of commons for restoring corporations to their ancient rights and privileges. They knew their own strength at elections consisted in these corporations; and they inserted two additional severe clauses against those who were in any shape concerned in surrendering charters. The whole power of the tories was exerted against this clause; and now the whigs vied with them in making court to his majesty, promising to manifest the most submissive obedience should this bill be enacted into a law. The strength of the tories was now become so formidable to the house, that they out-voted the other party, and the clauses were rejected; but the bill passed in its original form. The lords debated upon the point, Whether a corporation could be forfeited or surrendered? Lord chief justice Holt and two other judges declared their opinion in the affirmative: the rest thought otherwise, as no precedents could be produced farther back than the reign of Henry VIII. when the abbeys were surrendered; and this instance seemed too violent to authorize such a measure in a regular course of administration. The bill, however, passed by one voice only. Then both parties quickened their applications to the king, who found himself so perplexed and distracted between two factions which he equally feared, that he resolved to leave the government in the queen's hands and retire to Holland. He communicated this design to the marquis of Carmarthen, the earl of Shrewsbury, and some other noblemen, who pressed him to lay aside his resolution, and even mingled tears with their remonstrances.



THE KING RESOLVES TO FINISH THE IRISH WAR IN PERSON.

He at length complied with their request, and determined to finish the Irish war in person. This design was far from being agreeable to the parliament. His friends dreaded the climate of that country, which might prove fatal to his weak constitution. The well-wishers of James were afraid of that prince's being hard pressed, should William take the field against him in person.

Both houses, therefore, began to prepare an address against this expedition. In order to prevent this remonstrance, the king went to the parliament, and formally signified his resolution. After his speech they were prorogued to the second day of April. On the sixth day of February they were dissolved by proclamation, and a new parliament was summoned to meet on the twentieth day of March. During this session, the commons, in an address to the king, desired that a revenue of fifty thousand pounds might be settled upon the prince and princess of Denmark, out of the civil list; and his majesty gratified them in this particular: yet the warmth and industry with which the friends of the princess exerted themselves in promoting the settlement, produced a coldness and misunderstanding between the two sisters; and the subsequent disgrace of the earl of Marlborough was imputed to the part which his wife acted on the occasion. She was lady of the bed-chamber, and chief confidant to the princess, whom she strenuously advised to insist upon the settlement rather than depend upon the generosity of the king and queen.



LUDLOW ARRIVES IN ENGLAND, BUT IS OBLIGED TO WITHDRAW.

About this period general Ludlow, who at the restoration had been excepted from the act of indemnity, as one of those who sat in judgment upon Charles I. arrived in England, and offered his service in reducing Ireland, where he had formerly commanded. Though a rigid republican, he was reputed a conscientious man, and a good officer. He had received some encouragement to come over, and probably would have been employed had not the commons interposed. Sir Edward Seymour, who enjoyed by grant an estate in Wiltshire which had formerly belonged to Ludlow, began to be in pain for his possession. He observed in the house, that the nation would be disgraced should one of the J parricides be suffered to live in the kingdom. An address was immediately presented to the king, desiring a proclamation might be issued promising a reward for apprehending general Ludlow. This was accordingly published; but not before he had landed in Holland, from whence he returned to Vevay in Switzerland, where he wrote the memoirs of his life, and died after an exile of thirty years.



EFFORTS OF THE JACOBITES IN SCOTLAND.

While king William fluctuated between two parties in England, his interest in Scotland had well nigh given way to a coalition between the original Jacobites and Montgomery's party of discontented presbyterians. Colonel Cannon, who succeeded the viscount Dundee in command, after having made several unsuccessful efforts in favour of the late king's interest, retired into Ireland; and the highlanders chose sir Hugh Cameron for their leader. Under him they renewed their incursions with the better prospect of success, as several regiments of the regular troops had been sent to reinforce the army of Schomberg. James assisted them with clothes, arms, and ammunition, together with some officers, amongst whom was colonel Bucan, appointed to act as their chief commander. This officer, at the head of fifteen hundred men, advanced into the shire of Murray, in hopes of being joined by other malcontents; but he was surprised and routed by sir Thomas Livingstone, while major Ferguson destroyed the places they possessed in the Isle of Mull; so that the highlanders were obliged to retire and conceal themselves among their hills and fastnesses. The friends of James, despairing of doing any thing effectual for his service in the field, converted all their attention to the proceedings in parliament; where they imagined their interest was much stronger than it appeared to be upon trial. They took the oaths without hesitation, and hoped, by the assistance of their new allies, to embroil the government in such a manner that the majority of the people would declare for a restoration. But the views of these new cemented parties were altogether incompatible, and their principles diametrically opposite. Notwithstanding their concurrence in parliament, the earl of Melvil procured a small majority. The opposition was immediately discouraged: some individuals retracted, rather than fall with a sinking cause; and mutual jealousies began to prevail. The leaders of the coalition treated separately with king James; made inconsistent demands; reciprocally concealed their negotiations; in a word, they distrusted and hated one another with the most implacable resentment.



THE COURT INTEREST PREVAILS.

The earls of Argyle, Annandale, and Breadalbane, withdrew from their councils and repaired to England. Montgomery, terrified at their defection, went privately to London, after he had hinted something of the plot to Melvil, and solicited a pass from the queen, which was refused. Annandale, having received information that Montgomery had disclosed all the particulars of the negotiation, threw himself upon the queen's mercy, and discovered all he knew of the conspiracy. As lie had not treated with any of the malcontents in England, they remained secure from his evidence; but he informed against Nevil Payne, who had been sent down as their agent to Scotland, where he now resided. He was immediately apprehended by the council of that kingdom, in consequence of a letter from the earl of Nottingham; and twice put to the torture, which he resolutely bore, without discovering his employers. Montgomery still absconded in London, soliciting a pardon; but finding he could not obtain it, except on condition of making a full discovery, he abandoned his country, and chose to die in exile rather than betray his confederates. This disunion of the conspirators, and discovery of the plot, left the earl of Melvil in possession of a greater majority; though even this he was fain to secure by overstraining his instructions in the articles of patronage, and the supremacy of the crown, which he yielded up to the fury of the fanatic presbyterians, contrary to the intention of king William. In lieu of these, however, they indulged him with the tax of chimney or hearth-money; as well as with a test to be imposed upon all persons in office or parliament, declaring William and Mary their lawful sovereigns, and renouncing the pretended title of king James. All the laws in favour of episcopacy were repealed. Threescore of the presbyterian ministers, who had been ejected at the restoration, were still alive; and these the parliament declared the only sound part of the church. The government of it was lodged in their hands; and they were empowered to admit such as they should think proper to their assistance. A few furious fanatics being thus associated, proceeded with ungovernable violence to persecute the episcopal party, exercising the very same tyranny against which they themselves had so loudly exclaimed.



THE TORY INTEREST PREVAILS IN THE NEW PARLIAMENT.

While the presbyterian interest thus triumphed in Scotland, the two parties that divided England employed their whole influence and attention in managing the elections for a new parliament; and the tories obtained the victory. The king seemed gradually falling into the arms of this party. They complained of their having been totally excluded from the lieutenancy of London at the king's accession to the crown; and now a considerable number of the most violent tories in the city were admitted into the commission by the interest and address of the bishop of London, the marquis of Carmarthen, and the earl of Nottingham. To gratify that party, the earls of Monmouth and Warrington were dismissed from their employments; nay, when the parliament met on the twentieth day of March, the commons chose for their speaker sir John Trevor, a violent partisan of that faction, who had been created master of the rolls by the late king. He was a bold artful man, and undertook to procure a majority to be at the devotion of the court, provided he should be supplied with the necessary sums for the purposes of corruption. William, finding there was no other way of maintaining his administration in peace, thought proper to countenance the practice of purchasing votes, and appointed Trevor first commissioner of the great seal. In his speech to the new parliament, he gave them to understand that he still persisted in his resolution of going in person to Ireland. He desired they would make a settlement of the revenue, or establish it for the present as a fund of credit, upon which the necessary sums for the service of government might be immediately advanced; he signified his intention of sending to them an act of grace, with a few exceptions, that he might manifest his readiness to extend his protection to all his subjects, and leave no colour of excuse for raising disturbances in his absence, as he knew how busy some ill-affected men were in their endeavours to alter the established government; he recommended an union with Scotland, the parliament of which had appointed commissioners for that purpose; he told them he should leave the administration in the hands of the queen, and desired they would prepare an act to confirm her authority; he exhorted them to dispatch the business for which they were assembled, to avoid debates, and expressed his hope that they should soon meet again to finish what might be now left imperfect.



BILL FOR RECOGNISING THEIR MAJESTIES.

The commons, in compliance with his request, voted a supply of twelve hundred thousand pounds, one million of that sum to be raised by a clause of credit in the revenue bills; but he could not prevail upon them to settle the revenue for life. They granted, however, the hereditary excise for that term, but the customs for four years only. They considered this short term as the best security the kingdom could have for frequent parliaments; though this precaution was not at all agreeable to their sovereign. A poll-bill was likewise passed, other supplies were granted, and both parties seemed to court his majesty by advancing money on those funds of credit. The whigs, however, had another battery in reserve. They produced, in the upper house, a bill for recognising their majesties as the rightful and lawful sovereign of these realms, and for declaring all the acts of the last parliament to be good and valid. The tories were now reduced to a very perplexed situation. They could not oppose the bill without hazarding the interest they had so lately acquired, nor assent to it without solemnly renouncing their former arguments and distinctions. They made no great objections to the first part, and even proposed to enact, That those should be deemed good laws for the time to come; but they refused to declare them valid for that which was past. After a long debate, the bill was committed; yet the whigs lost their majority on the report; nevertheless, the bill was recovered, and passed with some alteration in the words; in consequence of a nervous spirited protest, signed Bolton, Macclesfield, Stamford, Newport, Bedford, Her bert, Suffolk, Monmouth, Delamere, and Oxford. The whole interest of the court was thrown into the scale with this bill, before it would preponderate against the tories; the chiefs of whom, with the earl of Nottingham at their head, protested in their turn. The same party in the house of commons were determined upon a vigorous opposition; and in the mean time some trifling objections were made, that it might be committed for amendment; but their design was prematurely discovered by one of their faction, who chanced to question the legality of the convention, as it was not summoned by the king's writ. This insinuation was answered by Somers the solicitor general, who observed, that if it was not a legal parliament, they who were then met, and who had taken the oaths enacted by that parliament, were guilty of high treason; the laws repealed by it were still in force: it was their duty therefore to return to king James; and all concerned in collecting and paying the money levied by the acts of that parliament were highly criminal. The tories were so struck with these arguments that the bill passed without further opposition, and immediately received the royal assent. Thus the settlement was confirmed by those very people who had so loudly exclaimed against it as illegal; but the whigs, with all their management, would not have gained their point had not the court been interested in the dispute.

{WILLIAM AND MARY, 1688—1701.}



ANOTHER VIOLENT CONTEST.

There was another violent contest between the two parties, on the import of a bill requiring all subjects in office to abjure king James on pain of imprisonment. Though the clergy were at first exempted from this test, the main body of the tories opposed it with great vehemence; while the whigs, under countenance of the ministry, supported it with equal vigour. It produced long and violent debates; and the two factions seemed pretty equally balanced. At length the tories represented to the king that a great deal of precious time would be lost in fruitless altercation; that those who declared against the bill would grow sullen and intractable, so as to oppose every other motion that might be made for the king's service; that, in case of its being carried, his majesty must fall again into the hands of the whigs, who would renew their former practices against the prerogative; and many individuals, who were now either well affected to him, or at least neutral, would become Jacobites from resentment. These suggestions had such weight with king William, that he sent an intimation to the commons, desiring they would drop the debate and proceed to matters that were more pressing. The whigs in general were disgusted at this interposition; and the earl of Shrewsbury, who had interested himself warmly in behalf of the bill, resented it so deeply that he insisted on resigning his office of secretary of state. The king, who revered his talents and integrity, employed Dr. Tillotson and others, who were supposed to have credit with the earl, to dissuade him from quitting his employment; but he continued deaf to all their remonstrances, and would not even comply with the request of his majesty, who pressed him to keep the seals until he should return from Ireland. Long debates were likewise managed in the house of lords upon the bill of abjuration, or rather an oath of special fidelity to William, in opposition to James. The tories professed themselves willing to enter into a negative engagement against the late king and his adherents; but they opposed the oath of abjuration with all their might: and the house was so equally divided that neither side was willing to hazard a decision, so that all the fruit of their debates was a prolongation of the session.



KING WILLIAM LANDS IN IRELAND.

An act was prepared for investing the queen with the administration during the king's absence; another for reversing the judgment on a quo warranto against the city of London, and restoring it to its ancient rights and privileges; at length the bill of indemnity so cordially recommended by the king passed both houses. [021] [See note G, at the end of this Vol.] On the twenty-first day of May, the king closed the session with a Short speech, in which he thanked them for the supplies they had granted, and recommended to them a punctual discharge of their duties in their respective counties, that the peace of the nation might not be interrupted in his absence. The houses were adjourned to the seventh day of July, when the parliament was prorogued and adjourned successively. As a further security for the peace of the kingdom, the deputy-lieutenants were authorized to raise the militia in case of necessity. All papists were prohibited to stir above five miles from their respective places of abode; a proclamation was published for apprehending certain disaffected persons; sir John Cochran and Ferguson were actually arrested on suspicion of treasonable practices. On the fourth day of June the king set out for Ireland, attended by prince George of Denmark, the duke of Ormond, the earls of Oxford, Scarborough, Manchester, and many other persons of distinction: on the fourteenth day of the month he landed at Carrickfergus, from whence he immediately proceeded to Belfast, where he was met by the duke of Schomberg, the prince of Wirtemberg, major-general Kirke, and other officers. By this time colonel Wolsey, at the head of a thousand men, had defeated a strong detachment of the enemy near Belturbat; sir John Lanier had taken Bedloe castle; and that of Charlemont, a strong post of great importance, together with Balingary near Cavan, had been reduced. King William having reposed himself for two or three days at Belfast, visited the duke's head-quarters at Lis-burne; then advancing to Hillsborough, published an order against pressing horses, and committing violence on the country people. When some of his general officers proposed cautious measures, he declared he did not come to Ireland to let the grass grow under his feet. He ordered the army to encamp and be reviewed at Loughbrilland, where he found it amount to six-and-thirty thousand effective men, well appointed. Then he marched to Dundalk; and afterwards advanced to Ardee, which the enemy had just abandoned.



JAMES MARCHES TO THE BOYNE.

King James trusted so much to the disputes in the English parliament, that he did not believe his son-in-law would be able to quit that kingdom; and William had been six days in Ireland before he received intimation of his arrival. This was no sooner known than he left Dublin under the guard of the militia commanded by Luttrel, and with a reinforcement of six thousand infantry, which he had lately received from France, joined the rest of his forces, which now almost equalled William's army in number, exclusive of about fifteen thousand men who remained in different garrisons. He occupied a very advantageous post on the bank of the Boyne, and, contrary to the advice of his general officers, resolved to stand battle. They proposed to strengthen their garrisons and retire to the Shannon to wait the effect of the operations at sea. Louis had promised to equip a powerful armament against the English fleet, and send over a great number of small frigates to destroy William's transports, as soon as their convoy should be returned to England. The execution of this scheme was not at all difficult, and must have proved fatal to the English army; for their stores and ammunition were still on board; the ships sailed along the coast as the troops advanced in their march; and there was not one secure harbour into which they could retire on any emergency. James, however, was bent upon hazarding an engagement; and expressed uncommon confidence and alacrity. Besides the river which was deep, his front was secured by a morass and a rising ground, so that the English army could not attack him without manifest disadvantage.



WILLIAM RESOLVES TO GIVE HIM BATTLE

King William marched up to the opposite bank of the river, and, as he reconnoitred their situation, was exposed to the fire of some field-pieces which the enemy purposely planted against his person. They killed a man and two horses close by him; and the second bullet, rebounding from the earth, grazed upon his right shoulder so as to carry off part of his clothes and skin, and produce a considerable contusion. This accident, which he bore without the least emotion, created some confusion among his attendants, which the enemy perceiving, concluded he was killed, and shouted aloud in token of their joy. The whole camp resounded with acclamation; and several squadrons of their horse were drawn down towards the river as if they had intended to pass it immediately and attack the English army. The report was instantly communicated from place to place until it reached Dublin; from thence it was conveyed to Paris, where, contrary to the custom of the French court, the people were encouraged to celebrate the event with bonfires and illuminations. William rode along the line to show himself to the army after this narrow escape. At night he called a council of war, and declared his resolution to attack the enemy in the morning. Schomberg at first opposed his design; but finding the king determined, he advised that a strong detachment of horse and foot should that night pass the Boyne at Slane-bridge, and take post between the enemy and the pass of Duleck, that the action might be the more decisive. This council being rejected, the king determined that early in the morning lieutenant-general Douglas, with the right wing of infantry, and young Schomberg, with the horse, should pass at Slane-bridge, while the main body of foot should force their passage at Old-bridge, and the left at certain fords between the enemy's camp and Drogheda. The duke, perceiving his advice was not relished by the Dutch generals, retired to his tent, where the order of battle being brought to him, he received it with an air of discontent, saying, It was the first that had ever been sent him in that manner. The proper dispositions being made, William rode quite through the army by torchlight, and then retired to his tent, after having given orders for the soldiers to distinguish themselves from the enemy by wearing green boughs in their hats during the action.



BATTLE OF THE BOYNE.

At six o'clock in the morning, general Douglas, with young Schomberg, the earl of Portland, and Auverquerque, marched towards Slane-bridge, and passed the river with very little opposition. When they reached the farther bank, they perceived the enemy drawn up in two lines, to a considerable number of horse and foot, with a morass in their front, so that Douglas was obliged to wait for a reinforcement. This being arrived, the infantry was led on to the charge through the morass, while count Schomberg rode round it with his cavalry to attack the enemy in flank. The Irish, instead of waiting the assault, faced about and retreated towards Duleck with some precipitation; yet not so fast but that Schomberg fell in among their rear and did considerable execution. King James however soon reinforced his left wing from the centre; and the count was in his turn obliged to send for assistance. At this juncture, king William's main body, consisting of the Dutch guards, the French regiments, and some battalions of English, passed the river, which was waist high, under a general discharge of artillery. King James had imprudently removed his cannon from the other side; but he had posted a strong body of musqueteers along the bank, behind hedges, houses, and some works raised for the occasion. These poured in a close fire upon the English troops before they reached the shore; but it produced very little effect: then the Irish gave way; and some battalions landed without further opposition. Yet, before they could form, they were charged with great impetuosity by a squadron of the enemy's horse; and a considerable body of their cavalry and foot, commanded by general Hamilton, advanced from behind some little hillocks to attack those that were landed, as well as to prevent the rest from reaching the shore. His infantry turned their backs and fled immediately; but the horse charged with incredible fury, both upon the bank and in the river, so as to put the unformed regiments in confusion. Then the duke of Schomberg, passing the river in person, put himself at the head of the French protestants, and pointing to the enemy, "Gentlemen," said he, "those are your persecutors;" with these words he advanced to the attack, where he himself sustained a violent onset from a party of the Irish horse which had broke through one of the regiments, and were now on their return. They were mistaken for English, and allowed to gallop up to the duke, who received two severe wounds in the head; but the French regiments being now sensible of their mistake, rashly threw in their fire upon the Irish while they were engaged with the duke, and instead of saving, shot him dead upon the spot. The fate of this general had well nigh proved fatal to the English army, which was immediately involved in tumult and disorder; while the infantry of king James rallied, and returned to their posts with a face of resolution. They were just ready to fall upon the centre, when king William having passed with the left wing, composed of the Danish, Dutch, and Inniskilling horse, advanced to attack them on the right. They were struck with such a panic at his appearance that they made a sudden halt, and then facing about, retreated to the village of Dunore. There they made such a vigorous stand that the Dutch and Danish horse, though headed by the king in person, recoiled; even the Inniskillmers gave way; and the whole wing would have been routed, had not a detachment of dragoons, belonging to the regiment of Cunningham and Livison, dismounted, and lined the hedges on each side of the defile through which the fugitives were driven. There they did such execution upon the pursuers as soon checked their ardour. The horse, which were broken, had now time to rally, and returning to the charge, drove the enemy before them in their turn. In this action general Hamilton, who had been the life and soul of the Irish during the whole engagement, was wounded and taken—an incident which discouraged them to such a degree, that they made no further efforts to retrieve the advantage they had lost. He was immediately brought to the king, who asked him if he thought the Irish would make any further resistance; and he replied, "Upon my honour, I believe they will; for they have still a good body of horse entire." William, eyeing him with a look of disdain, repeated, "Your honour! your honour!" but took no other notice of his having acted contrary to his engagement, when he was permitted to go to Ireland on promise of persuading Tyrconnel to submit to the new government. The Irish now abandoned the field with precipitation; but the French and Swiss troops, that acted as their auxiliaries under Lausun, retreated in good order, after having maintained the battle for some time with intrepidity and perseverance.

Previous Part     1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12  13  14  15  16  17  18 ... 53     Next Part
Home - Random Browse