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A29487 [A Brief] vindication of the Parliamentary proceedings against the late King James II proving that the right of succession to government (by nearness of blood) is not by the law of God or nature, but by politick institution : with several instances of deposing evil princes, shewing, that no prince hath any title originally but by the consent of the people. 1689 (1689) Wing B4656; ESTC R17719 41,711 76

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That it was never done to any Prince before Henry the Fifth All which Points do demonstrate that it 's the Coronation and Admission that makes a true and perfect King let the Title by Succession be what it will and that the Consent of the Realm is of much greater consequence than nearness of Blood. This may be prov'd by many Examples in England where Admission has prevail'd against Right of Succession as in William Rufus who succeeded the Conquerour and King Henry the First his Brother in King Stephen King John and others who only by Admission of the Realm were Kings against the order of Succession To these we may add Henry and Edward both Sirnamed the Fourth whose Entrances to the Crown if we well consider we shall find that both of them founded the best and surest part of their Titles upon the Election and Consent of the People And both of them having Remorse of Conscience at their dying days being they put so many Men to death for maintenance of their Rights and Titles had no better way to appease their own Minds but by thinking they were plac'd on the Throne by the Voice of the Realm and consequently might lawfully defend the same and punish such as intended to deprive them Moreover if we look into the Actions of Princes in all Ages we shall find that such Kings as were most politick and had the least doubt or suspicion of Troubles about the Title after their Deaths have caused their Sons to be Crown'd in their own days as trusting more to that than to their Title by Succession thô they were never so lawfully and lineally descended And of this I could alledge many Examples out of divers Countreys but specially in France since the last Line of Capetus came to that Crown for Hugh Capetus himself procured Robert his eldest Son to be Crown'd in his own days and Robert did the same for his youngest Son Henry Henry also did entreat the States of France to Admit and Crown Philip the First his eldest Son in his own time and this Kings Son Lewis did the same to both his Sons first to Philip and after his death to Lewis the younger And for the same cause the Prince of Spain is Swore and admitted by the Realm during his Fachers Reign The same Consideration also moved King David to Crown his Son Solomon in his own days And finally our King Henry the Second of England considering the alteration the Realm had made in admitting King Stephen before him against the order of Lineal Succession and fearing the like might happen after him caused his eldest Son Henry to be Crowned in his life time But this Device had but ill success for King Henry the younger made War upon King Henry the elder and got both the Kings of France and Scotland and many Nobles both of England and Normandy to take his part for which cause 't is probable that this thing has never since that time been us'd in England But yet hereby its evident what the Opinion of the World was in those days of the force of Coronation and Admission of the Commonwealth and how little the propinquity of Blood prevailed without it I might bring insinite Examples from the Grecians and Romans to this purpose but that it may be ojbected that they are too old and far fetch'd Examples and ought not to be Presidents to us in these Ages Wherefore I shall only give some few Examples of the Jews being they were Gods Elect People and so fit Presidents for us to follow and then hasten to those of kiter Times First then Thô God made Saul a true and lawful King and consequently gave him all the Kingly Priviledges Benefits and Prerogatives belonging to that degree and state whereof one was That his Children should succeed after him in the Crown yet after his death God suffered not any of his Generation to succeed him tho' he left behind a numerous Issue and among others Ishbosheth a Prince of 40 yeras old whom Abner the General Captain of that Nation follow'd for a time as their lawful Lord and Master by Succession until God check'd them for it and induc'd them to reject him and to receive David newly elected King who was a Stranger by Birth and no Kin to the King deceased Now if any one shall say that it was for the Sin of Saul whom God had rejected I do confes it and yet it makes nothing against our purpose being we do not pretend that a Prince who is next in Blood can justly be put back unless for his own defects or those of his Ancestors And it 's to be noted That Jonathan who was a good Man and much praised in Holy Writ being slain in the Battle and leaving a Son named Mephibosheth who was also put back tho'b y nearess of Blood he had great interest in the Succession and much before David and that only for ought appears upon the account of Saul his Grandfather After David succeeded Solomon who was his younger and tenth Son and the fourth only by Bathsheba tho' Adonijah the Heir apparent seeing his Father old and ready to dye had call'd many of the great Men of that State both Spiritual and Temporal intending to have proclaimed himself Heir apparent to the Crown but Bathsheba and Nathan the Prophet coming to the old King as he lay on his Bed put him in mind of his Promise to Bathsheba made for preferring of her Son telling him which pleased him well Quod occuli totius Israel in eum respicerent ut indicaret eis quis sederet in solio suo post ipsum Which was as much as to say That the whole Commonewealth referr'd it to his choice which of his Sons should Reign after him Upon these Reasons and Perswasions the old King was content they should take Solomon out of hand and put him on the Kings own Mule and carry him about the Streets of Jerusalem accompanied with his Guards and crying with found of Trumpets Long live King Solomon Hereby we may learn That these and the like determinations of the People about admitting or refusing of Princes to Reign or not to Reign over them when their Designs are to good Ends and for just Respects and Causes are allowed also by God and many times are his own special Drifts and Dispositions thô they seem to come from Man. Whereof there can be no more evident Proof than that which ensued afterwards to Prince Rehoboam the lawful Son and Heir to King Solomon who refusing to take away some hard and heavy Impositions laid on the People by Solomon his Father lost ten of the twelve Tribes who refused to admit him for their King but chose rather one Jeroboam that was a meer Stranger and God allowed thereof 1 King. 12.21 as the Scripture in express words testifies For when Rehoboam took himself to be openly injur'd would by Arms have pursu'd his Title and had gathered an Hundred and fourscore Thousand
admit the Succession of Etheldred both in respect of the Murther of King Edward his elder Brother committed for his sake as also for that he seem'd a Man very unsit for Government and of this Opinion was that holy Man Dunstand Archbishop of Canterbury who in flat words denied to Consecrate him but seeing the most part of the Realm incline to his side he told that it would repent them afterwards and that in his Life the Nation should be destroy'd as indeed it was and he forc'd to Normandy and left Sweno and his Danes in the possession of the Realm thô after Sweno's Death he return'd and died in London He had two Wives the first an English Woman by whom he had prince Edmond Sirnam'd Ironside for his great strength and courage Now he that will consider the passage of the Crown of England from the death of Edmond Ironside eldest Son of King Etheldred until the acquisition thereof by William Duke of Normandy will easily se what Authority the Commonwealth hath had to alter Titles of Succession according as publick necessity required Now since King William the First commonly call'd the Conquerour thô in truth he never grounded his Title upon any thing but the Election of the Confessor and Consent of the people the exclusion of Princes against the ordinary course of Succession is more notorious than in elder times therefore I shall only refer the Reader to their particular Lives who succeeded before the lawful Heirs by propinquity of Blood. As first William Rufus and henry the First before Robert their elder Brother King Stephen before Henry the Second and King John before Arthur Duke of Britain Some years afte when the Barons and States of England dislik'd the Governent of King John they rejected him and chose Lewis the Prince of France to be their King and swore Fealty to him at London and depriv'd the young Prince Henry his Son but after the death of his Father king John they recall'd again that Sentence and admitted this Henry to the Crown by the name of Henry the third and disannull'd the oath and Allegiance made to Lewis of France Now from this Henry the Third the Houses of Britany Lancaster and York do seem to issue as a triple Branch our of one Tree Now if we consider the Titles of the Kings of the House of York and those of Lancaster we shall see plainly that the best of all their Titles after the deposition of King Richard the Second depended most or the Authority of the Commonwealth for as the People were affected and the greater part prevailed so were their Titles either confirm'd altered or disannulled by Parliament and yet we may safely affirm that either part when they were in possession of the Crown and confirm'd therein by parliament were true and lawful Kings and that God concur'd with them as with true Princes for government of their People For if we should deny this Point great Inconveniences would follow and we should shake the States of most princes in the World at this day as by Examples which I have already alledg'd may appear And sO I shall end this point affirming That as propinquity of Blood is a great preheminence towards the attaining of any Crown yet it doth not bind the Commonwealth to admit it if weightier Reasons should urge the contrary Now it will be a further proof of what I have before alledg'd viz. That all Commonwealths have prefix laws to their Princes which they are as much bound to keep as any Subject if we consider their oaths at their Admission or Coronation And first of the Emperour who Swears to defend the Christian Religion to minister Justice equally to all Men to keep and observe all laws and priviledges of the Empire not to alienate or engage the possessions of the Empire to condemn no man but by course of Law and that whatsoever he does otherwise shall be void and of no validity Unto these Articles he Swears first by his Legates and he gives a Copy of his oath to each Elector and after he goes to be Crown'd where in the middle of Mast the Archbishop of Colen asks in the presence of all the the People Whether he is ready to Swear to the aforesaid Articles and he answers that he is then the Archbishop leads him to the high Altar where he Swears to them in express words which being done the Archbishop turning to the princes of the Empire and People there present asks them Whether they be content to swear Obedience and Fealty to him who answers Yes then he 's Anointed and the other two Archbishop lead him into the Vestry where Deacons are ready to put on his Robes then the Bishop of Colen delivereth him a drawn Sword and puts a Ring on his Finger and a Scepter in his Hand and then the three Archbishops put the Crown on his head and so he 's plac'd on the Imperial Throne where all the Princes swear Obedience to him Now it 's to be noted that the Emperour Swears three times twice himself and once by his Deputies before his Subjects Swear once to him In Polonia the manner of Crowning thieir King is in substance the same as of the Emperour His Oath is in these Words I do promise and swear before God and his Angels that I will do Law and Justice to all and keep the Peace of Christ's Church and the Vnion of his Catholick Faith and if which God forbid I should break my Oath I am content that the Inhabitants of this Kingdom owe no Duty or Obedience unto me as God shall help me and gods Holy Gospel In Spain I find that the manner of admitting their Kings was different and not the same before and after the destruction thereof by the Moors but yet in both times their Kings did Swear in effect the self-same Points which before have been mentioned in other Kingdoms Now Ambrosio Moral reports Ambro. Moral lib. 13. cap. 2. That a certain law was found writen in the Gothish Tongue and left since the time of Don Pelayo the first King after the Moors which prescrib'd how Men must make their King in Spain and how he must swear to the priviledges and Liberties of that nation Before all things it 's establisht for a law Liberty and Priviledge of Spain that the Kings shall be made by Voices and Consent perpetually to the intent that no Evil king may enter without the Consent of the people seeing they are to give him that which with their Blood and Labours they have gain'd from the Moors Thus far goes the first Article of this Law which is the more to be noted because the most ancient of the Spanish Historians do say that from this Don Pelayo the Succession of their Kings was ever by propinquity of Blood and yet we see that Election was joyned with it in express terms The second part of that Law contain'd the Ceremonies us'd in those old times at the admission of their
Kings Now as fro France their ancient Ceremonies of Crowning their old Kings was much after the manner which I noted before out of the Law of Don Pelayo first King of Spain after the Moors But as concerning the principal Point of that Action which is the substance of admitting the King unto his Royal Authority and of Oath by him made of governing well and justly and of the reciprocal Oath of Obedience made to him by his Subjects it was not much different from what is now used The Archbishop of Rhemes being vested in Pontifical Attire and come to the Altar to say Mast 9where the King is also upon a high Seat placed he turns to him and says these sords Sir that which we require at your hands this day is that you promise unto us that you 'l keep all Canonical priviledges Law and Justice due to be kept and defended as a good King is bound to do in his realm To which the King answers I do promise to every one of you that I will keep and maintain all Canonical priviledges Law and Justice due to every Man to the utmost of my power and by Gods help will defend you as a good King is bound to do This being done the king Swears and makes his oath laying his hands upon the gospel in these Words following I do swear and promise to all Christian People subject unto me these Points ensuing First To procure that all my Subjects be kept in union of the Church and I will defend them from all Excess Rapin Extortion and Iniquity Secondly I will take care that in all Judgments Justice shall be kept with Equity and Mercy Thirdly I 'le endeavour as much as possible to chase and drive out of my Realm all such as the Curch hath or shall declare Hereticks as God shall help me and his holy Gospel Thus Sweareth the King and then kisses the Book and immediately is sung Te Deum and then the King 's vested and the Ring Scepter Crown and the other Kingly Ornaments are put on him with Declaration first what they signifie and then particular Prayers are made to God that their signisication may be by the King fulfilled Now England hath particularly taken her Ceremonies from France Belfor in vita Phil. 2. being many of our English Kings have come from thence as William the Conqueror born in Normandy Stephen Earl of Blois and Bullen a French-man and Henry the Second born likewise in France and Son to the Earl of Anjou Now the Arcbishop of Canterbury doth ordinarily perform the Ceremonies at the Coronation in England as the Archbishop of Rhemes doth in France and we may collect the substance of what the Kings of England formerly swore from the Bishops Letter to Henry the Seocnd as also from the Speech of Thomas Arundel Archbishop of Canterbury to Henry the Fourth In the former are these Words Do you remember the Confession which you made and laid upon the Altar at Westminster for keeping and defending the liberty of the Church when you were Consecrated and Anointed King by Theobaldus our predecessor By which it appears that he not only Swears but gave up his oath also in Writing and for more solemnity and obligation laid it down with his own hands upon the Altar That to Henry the Fourth was occasioned by his attempting to take the temporalties from the Clergy wherefore the Archbishop desired him to remember the Oath which he made that he would delend the Church and Ministers thereof and therefore pray'd him to permit and suffer the Church to enjoy the Priviledges and Liberties which it did in the time of his Predecessors and he also desired him to consider his Promise made to the Realm which was That he would preferve unto every Man their Right and Title so far as in him lay At which the King was so moved as he would hear no more of that Bill of Laity but said He would leave the Church in as good or better condition than he feaund it The other conditions of good Government are expresly set down in the king of Englands oath recorded by ancient Writers in these Words Holing p. 47 1005. That he will during his Life bear due reverence unto Almighty God and to his Church and that he will administer Law and Justice equally to them all and take away all unjust Laws Which after he had sworn then did the Archbishop 9turning to the people declare whatthe King has promised and by an Herald at Arms asked their Consents Whether they were content to submit themselves unto this Man as unto their King or no under the Conditions proposed And when they have yielded the Archbishop beings to put on the Regal Ornaments as the Sword Ring Scepter and Crown as in the French Coronation and bids him hold his Place and keep his Oath And this is the sum of the English Coronation which may be read in Stow Stow in the Life of Ric. 2. but especially the Admissions as well of the said henry the Fourth last mentioned as also of King Edward the Fourth at their first Entrances to the Crown for in the Admission of KIng Henry Stow shews how the People were demanded thrice Whether they would be content to take him for their King And then the Archbishop read to them what this new King was bound by oath unto At the Admission also of King Edward the Fourth Staw shews how the Peoples Consent was solemnly demanded in S. Johns Fields by London notwithstanding King Edward had prov'd his title by Succession in the parliament at Weslminster And now the Consent of the people being had or He being thus Elected as Stow's Words are he was with great Royalty convey'd to Westminster Stow in the L●●● of Hen. 6. p. 7 and in the Hall set in the Kings Seat with S. Edwards Scepter in his hand and then the people were askt if they would have him King and they cried Yea yea Thus far Stow. Now if any except against these Instances because they entred and began their Reigns upon the deprivation of other Kings then living let them look into the Coronations of Edward the 6th Queen mary and Elizabeth and they will find That the Consent of the People and their Acceptation of those Princes is not only demanded by the publick Cry of a Herald at Arms which stands on the side of the Scaffold whereon the Prince is Crowned and the peoples Answer expected till they cry Yes yes but also that the said Princes gave their Corporal Oath unto the Bishiop who Crowned them to uphold and manintain the true Faith with the Liberties and Priviledges of the Church as also to govern by Justice and Law Which Oath no doubt hath been most solemnly sworn by all the Kings and Queens of England from the days of Edward the Confessor at the least and whosoever would see more Points of these Oaths set down in particular let him read Magna Charta and he 'l
and Marquesses of Austria and now are divided into Thirteen Cantons under Popular Magistrates of their own and its certain that God approves of our most Gracious Prince King WILLIAM since his Election by the People as he did of the former Princes while the Commonwealth were contented with them so as when Men talk of a Natural Prince or Natural Successor as many times I have heard the Word us'd if it be understood of one that is Born in the same Realm or Country and so of our own Natural Blood it hath some Sense thô he may be good or bad and none have been worse or more cruel many times than Home born Princes but if it be meant as thô any Prince had his particular Government or Interest to succeed by Institution of God or Nature its ridiculous for that God or Nature giveth it not as hath been declared but the particular Constitution of every Common-wealth within it self Now the Government of every Prince is to be respected according to the benefit that redounds to the Subject for whose good it was ordain'd and when the Subjects live well and prosperously are defended and maintained in Peace Safety and Wealth when Justice is done equally to all Men the Wicked punished and the Good rewarded when true Religion is maintain'd and Vertue promoted this is that which importeth the Realm and Subjects and not where or in what Country the Prince or his Officers were Born or of what Nation Language or Kindred they be for that as soon as he is placed in that Dignity he becometh a Stranger to me and it availeth me little whether he be of my Blood and Country or not And I may say as the People of Israel said to Rehoboam who being King Davids Grand-Son and of the House of Jesse thought his State assured and so might oppress the People at his pleasure Quae nobis pars in David vel quae haereditas in filio Jesse and so they left him and chose to be under Jeroboam a Stranger For what availed it them that lived in Spain under Peter the Cruel or in England under Richard the Third commonly call'd the Tyrant what did it import them that those Princes were of their own Country or Blood seeing they did that to them which a Stranger thô never so barbarous or cruel would scarce have done As in like manner What did it import those Noble Families of the De la Pools Staffords Plantagenets and others destroy'd by Henry the Eighth What avail'd it to them that the said King was not only their Country-man but their near Kinsman What profit or commodity was it to Thomas of Woodstock Duke of Gloucester that he lived under King Richard the Second who was his Nephew or to George Duke of Clarence that King Edward the Fourth was his Brother when both were disgrac'd and put to death by them and lost their Lands and Dignities which perhaps under a strange Prince they might have enjoyed many years And lastly what availeth it to Scotland or England that the late King James was descended of them and born with us or to the present Queen that he was her Father when he endeavour'd utterly to destroy the Peace and Tranquility of those Nations and unnaturally to exclude his Royal Daughter from the Inheritance of these Three Kingdoms to set up a suspected Child to finish the Game which he had begun so as we may say as before What part have we in James or what Inheritance in the Son of the Martyr And so much for this first Point which is the ground of all the rest I have to say Now since we have as I take it fully prov'd That no King or Goverour hath his Interest from God or Nature but from the particular Institutions of the Commonwealth I shall proceed to evince both by Reason and Example that they have Laws and Rules prescribed by the said Common-wealths by which they are bound to Rule and Govern their People Now I do really believe that of all other Governments Monarchy is the best and least subject to the Inconveniences that others are and that Popular Governments are the worst and have soonest come to ruine as may be shewed not only by old Examples of Greece Asia and Africa but also many Cities in Italy as Florence Bolonia Siena Pisa Arezzo Spóleto Perugia Padua and others which upon the fall or diminution of the Roman Empire under which they were before took unto themselves Popular Governments wherein they were tossed with continual Seditions Mutinies and banding of Factions and could have no end of their Miseries until after insinite Murthers and Massacres they came in the end under the Monarchy of one Prince as at this day they remain So where the Government of Aristocracy took place there were perpetual Divisions among the Senators as in Carthage which was the Reason that Succours were not sent to their Captain Hannibal in Italy after his so great and important Victory at Canna being the preservation of the Roman Empire and the loss of their own As also afterwards the Emulation and Disunion of the Roman Senators among themselves in the Contentions of Marius and Silla and of Pompey and Coesar was the occasion of all their Destruction and of the Commonwealth with them Now if the Prince who governeth alone and hath Supreme Authority to himself as he resembles God in this point of sole Command so could he resemble him also in wise discreet and just Government and in Ruling without Passion Nothing more excellent in the World could be desired for the perfect Felicity of his Subjects But because a King is a Man as others be and therefore not only subject to Errors in Judgment but also to passionate Assections in his Will therefore it was necessary that the Commonwealth as it gave him this great power over them so it should assign him the best Helps that might be for directing and rectifying both his Will and Judgment and make him as like in Government to God whom he representeth as mans Frailty can reach unto For this Consideration they assign'd to him the assistance and direction of Law Which Aristotle saith is a certain Mind disquieted with no disordinate Affection as mens Minds commonly be for that when a Law is made for the most part it s upon due consideration and without perturbation of evil Affections as Anger Envy Hatred Rashness or the like Passions and it is referred to some good End and Commodity of the Commonwealth which Law being once made remaineth still the same without alteration or partial Affection being indifferent to all speaking alike to every Man in which it resembles the Perfection of God himself For which cause the said Philosopher saith Aristot lib. 3. cap. 12. That he who joyneth a Law to govern with the Prince joyneth God to him but he that joyneth to the Prince his Affections joyneth a Beast So that a Prince Ruling by Law is more than a Man or a man Deified
he could get no more But yet his Posterity by virtue of this Election ever after pretended a Title to the Crown of France and never desisted until by Hugo Capetus they got it for Hugh was descended of this King and Duke Odo This Charles the Simple was decoy'd into the Castle of Perene in Picardy where he was made Prisoner and fore'd to resign his Kingdom unto Ralph King of Burgundy and soon after he died in the Castle and his Queen Odin and English Woman fled into England with her little Son Lewis unto her Uncle King Adelstan as Queen Adeltrude had done before But this new King Ralph lived but three years aster and then the States of France considering the Title of Lewis the Lawful Son of Charles the Simple which Lewis was commonly called by the name of d'Outremere that is beyond Sea being he was brought up in England the said States being continually solicited by the Ambassadors of King Adelstan and by William Duke of Normandy in behalf of the young Prince they resolved to call him home as they had done his Father and to admit and Crown him King and so they did and he Reigned Twenty seven years and was a good Prince and died peaceably in his Bed in the year of Christ 945. This Lewis d'Outremere left two Sons behind him the eldest succeeded him by the name of Lothair the First and the youngest he made Duke of Lorrain Lothair dying left one Son named Lewis who succeeded him by the name of Lewis the Fifth but dying without Issue the Crown was to have gone by Lineal Succession to his Uncle Charles Duke of Lorrain second Son of Lewis d'Outremere but the States of France put him byfor mislike of his Person chose Hugo Capetus Earl of Paris and so ended the second Line of Pepin and of Charles the Great and entred the Race of Capetus Now thô all the French Chronicles are carnest defenders of their Law of Succession yet they justifie the Title of Capetus against Charles of Lorrain as may appear by the Words of an ancient and diligent Chronicler of the Abby of S. Denis who defends King Capetus in these Words We may not grant by any means that Hugh Capet should be esteemed an Invader or Vsurper of the Crown of France seeing the Lords Prelates and Princes of the Realm did call him to this Dignity and chose him for their King and Sovereign Lord. Upon which Words Belforest saith as follows Bel. lib 3. cap 1. I have laid besore you the Words and Censure of this good and religious Man for they seem to me to touch the quick for in truth we cannot defend the Title of Capetus by any means from Vsurpation and Felony but by justifying his coming to the Crown by the consent and good will of the Commonwealth And these Instances out of the second Line of France I take to be sufficient proof of our Assertion without going any further for if we do but number these Kings already named of this second Race from Pepin to Capet which are about Seventeen in Two hundred thirty eight years we shall sind that not few but the most part of them did both enter and enjoy their Crown and Dignity contrary to the Law of Lineal Descent and of next Succession by Blood. We shall therefore instance some Examples for our purpose out of the English History and so conclude this Point First then it 's to be noted That the Realm of England hath had as great variety changes and diversity in the Races of their Kings as any Nation in the World For after the Britains it had Romans for their Governours for many years and then of them and their Roman Blood they had Kings of their own as appears by that Valiant King Aurelius Ambrosius who resisted so manfully the Saxons for a time after his they had Kings of the Saxon and English Blood and after them of the Danes and then of the Normans and after them again of the French and last of all of the Scotch of whom King james the Sixth was descended which continues to this day Now I mean to pass over the first and ancient Races of Kings as well of the British and Roman as also of the Saxon Races until King Egbert the First of that Name King of the West Saxons and almost of all the rest of England besides who therefore is said to be properly the first Monarch of the Saxon Blood as he that first commanded the Realm to be called England which ever since has been observ'd Thsi Egbert was banish'd the Realm by King Britricus for the suspected that he might be chosen King by reason of his great Prowess and Valour He lived many years in France under the Famous King Pepin afterwards hearing Britrious was dead he came into England Polydor. lib. 4. and was chosen King by universal Consent of the People and he prov'd one of the best Kings that ever the Saxons had before or perhaps after and he and King Pepin of France began their Reigns as it were together and came both to their Crown by no other Title but the Election of the People This King Egbert left a lawful son behind him named Ethelwolf who succeeded him in the Kingdom and was a Famous a Man as his Fahter This Ethelwolf had four lawful sons who all in their turns succeeded by just and lawful Order in the Crown viz. Ethelbald Ethelbert Ethelred and Alfred and all the latter Three were most excellent Princes especially Alfred who drow Rollo that Famous Captain of the Danes from the Borders of England with all his Company into France where he got the Country then name Neustria and now Normandy and was the first Duke of that Nation from whom our William the Conquerour came afterwards in the 6th Descent This Alfred left one Son behind him named Edward who dying left two Sons lawfully begotten of his Wife Edigna one called Edmond the other Eldred Polydor. lib. 5. ●tow pag. 130. and a third Illegitimate nam'd Adelstan whom he had by a Concubine This last was preferr'd to the Crown before the other two legitimate princes only for his Valour and Conduct This Man dying without Issue his lawful Brother Edmond put back before was admitted to the Crown who Reigned six years and left two lawful Sons but they bing young were both put back and their Uncle Eldred preferr'd before them who after Nine years Reign died without Issue and so his elder Nephew Edwin was admitted to the Crown who after four years was Depos'd for his lew'd and vitious Life and his younger Brother Edgar admitted in his place This King Edgar who entred by Depositio of his Brother was one of the rarest Princes that the World had in his time both for peace and War Justice Piety and Valour He lest two Sons by different Wives Edmond and Etheldred the first was Murther'd after which many good Men of the Realm were of Opinion not to
the Spaniards return'd and depriv'd Peter the second time and slew him in fight hand to hand who proved an excellent Prince and for his great nobility in Conversation and prowess in Chivalry was called El Cavalero the Knightly King and for his exceeding benignity and liberality was Sirnam'd also El delas Mercedes i.e. the King who gave many Gifts or the liberal frank and bountiful King which was a great alteration from King Peter the Cruel his Predecessor In Portugal also before I go out of Spain I will alledge one Example more which is of Don Sancho the 2d fourth King of Portugal lawful Son to Don Alenso Sirnam'd El Gardo 3d King of Portugal This Don Sancho after he had Reigned 34 years was deprived for his defects in Government by the universal Consent of all Portugal Garib lib. 4. de hist Port. cap. 19. and this approved by a general Council in Lions and Don Alonso third Brother to the said Don Sancho succeeded who enjoy'd the Kingdom of Portugal prosperously and peaceably all the days of his life and he was a notable King who among other great Exploits set Portugal free from all subjection Garib hist Port. lib. 34. cap. 20. dependance and homage to the Kingdom of Castile which unto his time it had acknowledged and he left for his Successor his Son and Heir Don Dionysio el Fabricador that is the Great Builder for he built and founded above 44 great Towns in Portgual and was a very excellent Prince In Polonia Henry the 3d who was King of France thô before Sworn King of Poland Vide Gagnen part 1. of which Crown he was deprived by publick Act of Parliament for departing thence without Licence and not returning at his day by the State appointed and denounced by publick Letters of peremptory Commandment This was a clear Abdication and the said State proceeded against him much after the same manner as ours did against the late King James In Denmark Cisternus their lawful King if we respect his descent in Blood being Son to King John who Reigned before him and Crown'd in his Fathers life was deposed for his intolerable Cruelty and driven into Banishment together with his Wife and three Children which were all disinherited and his Uncle Frederick Prince of Holsatia was chosen King and Cisternus thô he married the Sister of Charles the 5th Emperour of Germany and was Related also to Henry the 8th of England yet he could never prevail to be restored but past his time miserably partly in Banishment and partly in Prison till he died Now I think it convenient to end this short Narration with an Example or two out of England being I have not read of more remarkable Accidents concerning this Point than in the History of this Kingdom But for brevities sake I shall content my self with three or four Examples which hapned since the Conquest thô I may well look higher as appears by the deprivation of King Edwin and others Now I might instance King John who the States had deprived first at Canterbury and after at London in the 18th year of his Reign but being he was in actual War with the Barons and had a considerable Party to espouse his Quarrel and not being deprived by Parliament I shall therefore pass it by not accounting it so compleat a Deposition as that of Edward the Seconds was Polydor. lib. 18. it being done by Act of Parliament assembled in London in the year 1326 and his Body adjudg'd to perpetual Imprisonment he being Prisoner at that time in the Castle of Wallingford Stow in the Life of Edw. the 2d whether divers both Bishops Lords and Commoners were sent to him to denounce the Sentence of the Realm against him viz. how they had deprived him and chosen Edward his Son in his stead For which act of chasing his Son he thank'd them heartily and with many Tears acknowledg'd his own unworthiness Whereupon he was degraded his name of King first taken from him and he appointed to be call'd Edward of Carnarvan and then his Crown and Ring were taken away and the Steward of his House brake the Staff of his Office in his presence and discharged his Servants of their Services and all other People were discharged of their Obedience and Allegiance to him and towards his Maintenance he had only 100 Marks a year allowed for his Expences and then he was delivered into the hands of particular Keepers who led him Prisoner from thence to many other places using him with extreme Indignity in the way until at last they took away his Life in Berkley Castle and his Son Edward the 2d Reign'd in his stead who if we respect either Valour Prowess length of Reign acts of Chivalry or the multitude of Famous Princes his Children left behind him was one of the noblest Kings that ever England had After him succeeded Richard the 2d Son and Heir to the renowned Black Prince of Wales who forgetting the miserable end of his Great Grandfather for evil Government and the felicity of his Grandfather for the contrary suffered himself to be abus'd and misled by evil Counsellors to the great prejudice and disquiet of the Realm For which cause after he had Reigned 22 years he was also depos'd by Act of Parliament held at London 1399 and condemn'd to perpetual Imprisonment in the Castle of Pomfret where he was soon after put do death as the other before had been in whose place by free Election was chosen the Noble Henry Duke of Lancaster who prov'd a notable King and was Father to Henry the 5th commonly call'd the Alexander of England for as Alexander the Great conquered most part of Asia in the space of 9 or 10 years so did this Henry conquer France in less time I may also reckon in the number of Princes depriv'd for defect in Government thô otherwise of no ill life Henry the 6th who after 40 years Reign was deposed and imprisoned by Edward the 4th of the House of York and the same was confirm'd by the Commons and especially by the People of London and also by publick Act of Parliament not only in respect of the Title which King Edward pretended but also by reason that King Henry suffered himself to be over rul'd by the Queen his Wife and had broken the Articles of Agreement made by the Parliament between him and the Duke of York and solemnly sworn on both sides in punishment whereof and of his other negligent and evil Government Sentence was given against him and Edward the 4th elected in his place who was an excellent Prince But after this there sell another Accident much more notorious which was That Richard Duke of Gloucester this King Edward's Brother did put to death his two Nephews and made himself King and thô he acted very barbarously by taking the Crown in this wicked manner yet when his Nephews were once dead he might reasonably seem to be lawful King both
in respect that he was next Mále after his Brother as also because his Title was authoriz'd and made good by many Acts of Parliament both before and after the deaths of those Infants and yet I think no man will say but that Henry of Richmond had very good reason to come out of France being Called and Invited by the People of England to revenge the Cruelties and Arbitrary things done by Richard the 3d and that this undertaking was no less successful than generous and obtain'd the Crown for his pains after that Richard had died in the Field and became King by the name of Henry the 7th and no man I suppose will deny him to have been a true and lawful King. And moreover as I said before I would have you consider in all these mutations what Kings always succeeded in the places of such as have been depos'd as namely in England in the place of those Five Kings before-mentioned viz. John Edward the 2d Richard the 2d Henry the 6th and Richard the 3d there have succeeded three Henries the 3d 4th and 7th and 2 Edwards the 3d and 4th some of them most rare and valiant Princes who have done many important Acts in their Commonwealth and among others have raised many Houses to the Nobility put down others changed States both abroad and at home distributed Ecclesiastical Dignities altered the course of Descent in the Royal Blood and the like