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This order, was, it is true, warranted by several precedents in both countries, and was rendered seemingly expedient by the animosity of parties, and by the circumstance, that the parliament then held its sittings in the castle. It is also likely that the parliamentary character of the dangerous proceedings then passing in England, made it seem expedient to tread down to the utmost the temper of the Irish parliament which was more likely to show the insubordinate temper than the constitutional wisdom of that of England. Whatever was the policy, the order was made by proclamation, that the lords and commons should enter the house without their swords; and the usher of the black rod was stationed at the door to receive them from the members as they entered. To the demand of this officer all assented, and no demur was made until the earl of Ormonde came. As he proceeded to enter, without taking the slightest notice of the usher's first intimation, he was brought to a stand by a more peremptory check from this officer, who stepped before him, and with the usual "jack-in-office" impertinence of state menials, demanded his sword. The earl shortly answered, that if he had his sword "it should be in his guts," and without further notice of the cowed official, walked to his seat. This incident could not fail to find its way at once to the viceregal ear: Strafford felt outraged at so unexpected a defiance of his authority, and resolved to make the refractory young noble feel the weight of his power. Without a moment's delay, he sent to summon the earl to his presence at the rising of the house. Ormonde came; he was asked if he was not aware of the order, and if he had not seen the lord-lieutenant's proclamation? he replied in the affirmative, but added, that he had disobeyed them in deference to a superior authority to which his obedience was first due, and then he produced the king's writ, by which he was summoned to come to parliament cum gladio ductus. To this there was no immediate reply; though Strafford regarded the words as merely formal, they were too express a justification, and on too specious an authority to be slighted, and he was unwillingly compelled for the time to dismiss the offending earl without even a reprimand. This was not very agreeable, either to his policy or to his peremptory temper, and he seems to have for a while balanced on the adoption of some vindictive course. He consulted Sir George Radcliffe and Mr Wandesforde, the master of the rolls, who were both his confidential friends and advisers: he told them that "the single point under consideration was, whether he should crush so daring a spirit, or make him a friend."* Sir George Radcliffe, the friend of both, gave this prudent advice, "that as it was necessary for the lord-deputy to have seme friends among the great men of the kingdom which he was to govern, so he knew none among them all who so well deserved to be made a friend as that earl, whether he considered the power which his birth, alliances, estate, and capacity, gave him in the nation, or his personal qualities, the zeal which he had both by principle and inclination for the service of the crown, the generosity of his nature, and the nobleness of his sentiments which qualified him for such a friendship as he should wish his patron to enjoy and cultivate." Such was the
counsel adopted by lord Strafford. It was indeed amply recommended by other considerations as likely to have immediate influence. Ormonde already possessed the weight which was due to his active energy of character and his property in the country: in parliament he had not only his own voice and vote, but was fortified with the proxies of the lords Castlehaven, Somerset, Baltimore and Aunger. Strafford entered with the determination of his own character into the course he now adopted, and soon came to the most friendly understanding with one whose principles were all conformable to his own on the questions of main importance. The friendship of Strafford was probably of no small use to the earl in the conduct of some private affairs respecting his estates, which he had then for some time been engaged in negotiating with government. A project for the plantation of the large tracts of territory, known by the designation of Upper and Lower Ormonde, had long been entertained, and at several times taken up by the crown. It was important to the earl, as involving the question of rights in a district of which he was the chief proprietor. The plan was revived under the active and improving administration of the earl of Strafford, and Ormonde received notice of it from Sir W. Ryves, who at the same time pressed him to take the same course which his grandfather had done, which was to enter with zeal into the project and make a composition with the government for the saving of his own rights and estates. This was the more likely to succeed, as the inquisition essential to the purpose of government, to ascertain the title of the crown, required the inspection of his lordship's title deeds. The king had also written to enjoin, that every attention should be paid to the wishes and to the interests of the earl. Under circumstances so favourable, the plan was highly to the advantage of Ormonde, who entered into it readily, and won the favour of the king and the Irish government by the alacrity with which he offered his services, and afforded the use of the necessary documents. The spirit of compliance was desirable to encourage, and there was thus an additional reason on the part of government for making every concession to Ormonde, so as to display to others in a strong light the advantages of the concession he had made. By the help of these advantages, and his own active temper, Ormonde not only secured his own estates but contrived also to settle and establish some claims which had been rendered questionable by the encroaching disposition of his neighbours. He obtained also in addition, a grant of the fourth part of the lands to be planted by the crown. He also obtained grants of a thousand acres each for his friends, "John Pigot, Gerald Fennel and David Routh, esquires."*
After some minor honours, not sufficiently important to detain us here, the earl was in 16.10 appointed lieutenant-genera £4 per day; and during the absence of the carl made commander-in-chief of the forces raise of the king against the Scots. Stra 1640, leaving Wandesforde his activity and diligence of Ormonda rapidly collected in Carrickfergu
portance, we forbear from entering into the full details of this service: the levies were easily made, but the means for their payment were not so readily forthcoming, and the delay caused much inconvenience, and some false movements in the council not essential to relate. This army was actually commanded in Carrickfergus by St Leger, as the earl of Ormonde was obliged to remain in Carrick by the illness of his countess, who was soon after delivered of a daughter—the lady Elizabeth Butler afterwards married to Philip earl of Chesterfield.
The absence of Ormonde from parliament, where his great influence and commanding ability had leading weight, was now strongly felt, and his presence was importunately desired by Wandesforde. As however he was reluctant to leave his countess in her illness, he compromised the matter by sending the proxies intrusted to him, together with his own to noblemen in whom the government might confide. The parliament had become at this time more difficult to manage than hitherto: the example of the English parliament, the infection of the covenanters, the yet latent springs of the approaching rebellion, had given a tone to th«ir temper, which the absence of Strafford left uncontrolled. Strafford was detained, first by his own protracted illness, and then by the illness of the earl of Northumberland, whose place he was compelled to fill in the command of the king's army against Scotland. During this time, the Irish parliament made a violent and partly successful effort to diminish and delay the subsidies which had been voted for the public service: so that in consequence a considerable sum was not levied, till the eruption of rebellion in the following year put an end to the proceeding.* The expedition against Scotland was rendered abortive by the king's irresolution and the intrigues <£ his leading officers, who were secretly promoters of the parlianeMH^ party, and consequently favourers of the covenanters; and thef tion of all his subsequent disasters was laid by the treaty of 1 The prosecution of Strafford followed and the death of Wi
In the course of 1640, and the following year, the i exerted his best abilities in parliament to resist the i rent that had set in against the king. The Strafford, and the perceptibly increasing power English commons had first produced a new and temper of the commons: from being obs took at once the tone and entered into the i mons. Their former loyalty, whichsas Uk -. self-interest, was at once and whoJAithrowt it had required a firm hand to su^H continuance of civil subordin fierceness of sect and party: judices, the resentment of i discontents, and jealousies which all had something^ holies and the
the public movements of faction, the declared motives and the public complaints were such as to impose upon the general historian a necessity of admitting that their language is not contrary to reason, or their complaints and demands devoid of justice. The reason, however, and the justice, will, in the case before us, upon a fair view of the facts, appear to be little more than specious pretences, addressed to the ignorance and prejudice of the public mind—ever facile and precipitate, and more so then than now. We cannot here devote a dozen pages to the minute analysis necessary to expose this error; which is however of the less importance, as it seldom imposes upon any person capable of reflection, unless when he imposes on himself. It will appear on strict investigation, that the chief part of the demands and complaints of this parliament owe their present appearance of right and justice to the want of an adequate conception of the real state of Ireland, its parties, interests, and civil state at that period: the remaining portion was advanced, not for its justness or expediency, but for the vexatious purpose of party. It may be looked on as a maxim, that in any state of things the disposition to find fault can never be at a loss for fault to find; aud having guarded our meaning with these qualifications, we may say that the first ebullition of the commons, though evidently vexatious in purpose, was highly warranted in justice. The principle of taxation was unequal, and threw the burden almost exclusively on the aristocracy: the subsidies, which had nevertheless been freely voted, were exorbitant, and the method of rating them unequal and oppressive. Their complaints of the conduct and fees of the ecclesiastical courts and other similar institutions, perverted for the purpose of exaction, were founded in truth, though mainly recommended to the parties as affording a common basis for present union.
In the following session they met in a temper of still increased resistance, and went more directly to their purpose. The laws which Strafford had obtained for national improvement, were the first objects of attack, they represented the inconveniencies attendant upon the enforcement of the laws against plowing by the horse's tail, burning corn in the straw, plucking sheep alive, &c; and in their violence displayed their sense of constitutional freedom by urging the remedy of these complaints by the application of arbitrary power on the part of government.
Their attack upon the subsidies was the most effective effort of their combination with the English parliament. Having in the beginning of the year voted four entire subsidies, and of their readiness to add to this tribute of zealous devotion, if the king should require it: in a few months more, they complained of the burden and postponed its levy; and on their next meeting, before the same year was past, they passed a resolution for the purpose of defeating it entirely, by which it was reduced to the tenth of its amount.
The contest, as it deepened, supplied them with more weighty and better considered topics of grievance, and having become closely cemented with the English commons, they received the aid of profounder knowledge, and were urged on by more long-sighted atrocity than their own. The remonstrance contrived by the prosecutors of Strafford gives a deeper and more statesmanlike tone to the pro