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conditionally, that it should not be published, until his majesty had acquainted the Marquis of Ormond and his friends in Ireland with it."
At the same time that the Scots detained Weston in Scotland, and by that means prevented Ormond's earlier and particular knowledge of this transaction, “ they dispatched several of their ministers to the Laggan and Clanboys in the north of Ireland ;" who, doubtless, proclaimed aloud the news of the king's having consented to take the covenant," and to declare the late peace void; being afsured, that nothing could more alienate the affections of the Irish from his majefty, or set them at greater variance among themselves, than such intelligence. In May, 1650, the Marquis of Ormond had + heard by reports, which he thought probable, that the king had agreed with the Scots." And he afterwards expressed his apprehension,' “ that great advantage was left to such as were industrious to draw the Irish from their allegiance, by infusing into them a belief, that his majesty, having taken, or approved, the covenant, they were deprived of the benefit of the peace, and left to the extirpation, which the covenant proposes, of their religion and persons.”
Proceedings of the bishops at James-town. THE confederates being now alarmed by repeated accounts of the king's having taken the covenant, not without a well grounded luspicion, that Ormond had approved of, and advised, that measure ; feveral of their bishops assembled at James-town, in order to con
3 Cart. Orm. vol. ii. fol. 111. + Cart. Orig. Pap.
s Ib. vol. ii. fol. 442.
* The Marquis of Ormond in a letter from Ennis, 25th of June, 1650, says, " that the report of his majesty's being then agreed with his subjects of Scotland, was given out among
the rebels." Cart. Orig. Pap. vol. ii. p. 433.
sult what was fit to be done on so important an emergency; where taking into consideration, the fad condition to which their nation and religion must neceffarily be reduced by such an event; and mindful of a resolution they had formerly," with good reason, entered into, that in case of a breach or disavowal of the peace, on the part of his majesty or lord lieutenant, they would return to their original confederacy, as the likeliest means to hinder their people from closing with the parliament, “ they now fell to deliberate on the most effectual way of putting that resolution in practice; and, at length, determined to recall and withdraw, on the peril of ecclesiastical censúre, all those of their communion, from the Marquis of Ormond's command." I Wherefore, on the 12th of August, 1650, they drew up and signed an excommunication against all such catholics “ as should enlist under, feed, help, or adhere to his excellency; or assist him with men, money, or any other supplies whatsoever.”
To this excommunication (which, though thus haltily drawn up, was not published till the 15th of the following month) a limitation was annexed,' “ that the next general assembly, which was soon to meet at Loughrea, should dispose of it as they thought proper.' But that assembly not having met at the appointed time; and fresh and undoubted intelligence arriving daily, that his majesty had taken the covenant, and made void the peace, (the only security that was left them for their religion, liberty, lives and fortunes) these bishops, on the 15th of September, 1650, published their excommunication in the usual form. At the same time, they unanimously resolved, pursuant to their association-oath, still faithfully to serve the king against the regicides, and to use all the means in their
: « On account of the king's disavowal of Glamorgan's peace, and his being prevailed on by the Scots to make void that which had been concluded with the Marquis of Ormond in 1646, by his own reiterated commands.
power to hinder their people from assisting them in any respect whatsoever. The sincerity of this resolution appears, by their including in the same censure,} “ all those unnatural patriots, and others of their own flock, that should adhere to these common enemies of God, king, and country; or should any ways help, assist, abet, or favour them, by bearing arms for, or with them; or by otherwise contributing to them, without urgent necessity.” So little foundation was there for the injurious reflection made by a late historian,“ “ that it having been proposed to these bishops, to issue their excommunication against those who were guilty of such compliances, they had reserved this engine of theirs for more factious purposes, and could not be prevailed upon to employ it in the king's service."
On the very next day, however, after this excommunication was published, these bishops ifsued an order for suspending the effects of it in the Earl of Clanrickard's army, which consisted chiefly of catholics, the only persons that could be affected by it. Upon which irresolution of theirs, the Marquis of Ormond failed not to observe,' “ that, fupposing them to have proceeded on just grounds, yet their rashness was not ex. cusable, as appears in that as they hastily denounced their excommunication on the 15th of September, so it was more wisely suspended by the same men on the 16th following."
C H A P.
3 Append. to Walsh's Hift. of the Remonft. f. 70.
4 Lel. Hift. of Irel. 5 Carte's Orm.
Ormond approved and advised the king's agreement
with the Scots. LORD Clarendon, Dr. Borlase,' Mr. Carte, and generally all our historians affirm,“ that when the Marquis of Ormond first heard of the king's declaration at Dumferling, he did really believe it a forgery," contrived either by the English rebels, or the Irish congregation, to seduce the people from their loyalty and affection to his majesty.”. However that might be, his lordship certainly knew long before that declaration was published (what was equally destructive to the Irish peace), that the king had agreed to take the covenant, and thereby engaged his solemn promise to endeavour the utter extirpation of these people's religion or persons. For fo“ early as March 5th, 1648, we find, by a letter from himself, that “ he understood the kingdom of Scotland had invited his majesty thi. ther to be crowned; but that he was to secure religion, according to the covenant, before he was to be admited to govern.” After which he says,
“ if his majesty resolves to consent to that condition, in the most rigid construction of it to himself and his subjects, I doubt not but his immediate going thither is most counsellable.” 6 But he, at the same time, “ quef
· See Borl. Irish Rebel. f. 328.
a Dr. Leland more cautiously, and indeed, more truly says, “ that Ormond affected to believe it a forgery ; but that he foon received a private letter from the king, acknowledging that he had really subscribed the declaration, apologizing for this shameful transaction, as the effect of fear or force." Hist. of Irel. vol. iii. p. 376.
Nay, in one of his letters on this occasion, he actually vindicates the king's conduct in this particular : “ I am much
tioned not, but it would be considered, how inconsistent the covenant was with the peace concluded with the Irish, by virtue of the power given him; and that there would be care taken, to give that people no apprehension, that they would be broken with, which might drive them to take desperate ways for their fafety.” In November 1649, he declared, “ that he was at no time against the treaty with Scotland ; and that much less was he then." In July 1650,5 « he believed it then appeared, that the treaty was ended, he hoped, in an agreement with the Scots, so that, adds his lordship, " in place of arguments to dispose his majesty to an accord so necessary, as without, or besides it, I see no near hope of his restitution, I shall apply myself to the use to be made of such an accord in this kingdom” (Ireland). And then he proposes, C6 that himself
be fortified with some gracious declaration from his majesty, subsequent to the agreement of Scotland, in favour of all those (Irish) that had been, and still continued, loyal and affectionate to his service ; and he conceived, that, without such a declaration and purpose as to those, his majesty could not
* Orm. Let. to Sec. Nicholas. Cart. Orig. Pap. vol. ii. p. 415. s Id. ib. p. 436.
Append. to Walsh's Remonstrance.
deceived,” says he, “ if it hath not passed for the most orthodox doctrine, with those I take to be the most orthodox men, that in lawful commands (and such certainly is the defence or recovery of their just rights), we are to yield active obedience to papist, nay pagan princes, if we be their subjects; and why not as well to a presbyterian king, I know not.” Carte's Orig. Pap. vol. i. f. 430.
That active obedience ought to be paid to the lawful commands of popish, presbyterian, or even pagan princes, is not denied or controverted. The only question here is, whether either popish or protestant subjects are bound to pay fuch obedience to the unlawful commands of any prince, who had broken the public faith, solemnly plighted to them; and who had publicly vowed, in the manner before mentioned, the utter extirpation of their religion and persons ?