Sayfadaki görseller
PDF
ePub

Parliament of the King's unexpected appearance. His Majesty was soon after prevailed on to issue orders to his garrison to surrender to the Parliament, forces, and constrained to command Montrose to lay down his arms, and leave the country. As Montrose did not execute these orders with that precipitation which the Covenanters desired, the King was compelled to enjoin him, under pain of high treason; Montrose, therefore, took farewell of his troops, and repaired to Angus, where a vessel was to be in readiness to receive him. The master of the vessel being a furious abettor of the Covenanters, the Earl was advised, by his friends, to repair to another port. Accordingly, along with a few followers, he embarked at Stonehive, in a small sloop, for Bergen, in Norway. This year ended as it had begun, with bloodshed, famine, and pestilence; the latter raged with fury in almost all the towns of Scotland, particularly in Edinburgh, Leith, Aberdeen, Brechin, St. Andrews, and Glasgow. The King remained in the hands of the Covenanters for nine months; during which time, the Scots Commissioners had frequent conferences with the English Parliament, for advising what was to be done in reference to His Majesty; the result was, to send English Commissioners to the King, at Newcastle, whither he and the Scots army had removed.

The Commissioners having repaired to Newcastle, on the 25th of July 1646, required that the King should subscribe the solemn League and Covenant, approve of the Assembly of Divines, who had met at Westminster, and ratify the whole proceedings of both Parliaments. To these requests the King replied, "that if he assented, he would thereby unking himself;" he, however, agreed to certain minor proposals. The Covenanters replied, "they must have all or none;" on which His Majesty said, "that, in that case, he must dismiss them with a refusal."

After several conferences, it was agreed, on both sides, that the Scots should receive 200,000l. sterling in hand, and as

much more on a given period, on condition of their withdrawing their army, and surrendering the King without condition.

This proposal being acceded to on 28th January 1647, the King was delivered up, or rather sold to the Parliament Commissioners, who conducted him to Holderly or Holmly House, in Northumberlandshire; he was soon after carried to the army, but General Cromwell, whose great design was to prevent a junction between the King and the Presbyterians, conducted him to Hampton Court, from which he soon made his escape to the Isle of Wight. A few days after the King's departure, a meeting of the general Officers of the army took place at Windsor, when it was resolved alike by the Independents and Presbyterians, (for the army was now divided into religious classes,) that His Majesty should be proceeded against as a criminal. Although the Parliament and the army were now both against the King, they did not enjoy power and authority without molestation, for tumults, insurrections, calumnies, and conspiracies, increasing every where, a second civil war was brought on in 1648.

The party of Independents, of which Cromwell was the Chief, having taken every opportunity of mortifying the Scots, the latter resolved, notwithstanding their having given the King's cause the first fatal blow, to arm in his favour, in consideration of the dangers of the Presbyterian system, and as they were bound by the covenant to defend the person of the King.

In their preparations, however, they were disturbed by discontents and animosities among themselves; each district having been ordered to furnish quotas, the great body of the Clergy took an active hand in opposing the levy, as they dreaded that the Monarchy would be restored without the establishment of Presbytery in England; excited by their discourses, several of the Burghs and Shires became extremely backward. The City of Glasgow having been among the number of those who were refractory, the Magistrates and Council were summoned

to answer to the Parliament for their conduct, although their fault was common to the great part of the nation: Provost Stewart and the other Magistrates were imprisoned for several days, and an Act passed, "1st June 1648," depriving them of their offices. On the 4th June thereafter, the Town Council met, when, having ordered the Act of Parliament of the 1st current, to be promulgated at the Market-Cross, they elected Colin Campbell to be Provost, John Anderson, James Tran, and William Neilson, to be Baillies. The Town Council was also completely changed, and made up of those who served in the year 1645.

The degradation of the Magistrates, and the undue interference with the political concerns of the Burgh, did not sum up the miseries of the Town, for four regiments of horse and foot were sent to Glasgow, with orders to quarter solely on the Magistrates and Council and the Session, and this order was most punctually executed, for the Members of Council and the Session had each to quarter and entertain with meat and drink, ten, twenty, or even thirty soldiers; the oppression was so great, that, in ten days, they sustained a loss of 40,000l. Scots.

The Clergy who were in opposition to the levy, were chiefly guided by Argyle. In this unsettled state, disputes occurred between the Commission of the Church and the Parliament; the former insisted, that before raising an army, an oath should be taken that it is not lawful to attempt the King's restitution, till he should first swear and subscribe the covenant in addition to the coronation oath, and that he should extirpate Popery and Prelacy; in the meantime, measures were pursued for furthering the levy. The army being completed to the extent of 22,000 foot and 8000 horse, at an expense of 1007. Scots for every foot soldier, and 300 merks for each horseman, they set out on Saturday, 8th July, for England, and next day, the Town of Carlisle was given up to them. At this period, a general spirit of discontent pervaded the

two Kingdoms; the people felt themselves under a military tyranny, and loaded with taxes; the same spirit seized the English fleet, and the whole country was full of insurrection and confusion. The Parliament of England becoming jealous of the Scots, declared them to be enemies, and all who joined them, traitors. Cromwell and the Military Council having made vigorous preparations, the Parliamentary forces gained several advantages over the Royalists in England and Wales. The Marquis of Hamilton, one of the leaders of the moderate Presbyterians, having entered England at the head of a numerous, but undisciplined army, was attacked by Cromwell near Preston, in Lancashire, when his army was routed, and himself taken prisoner. Cromwell, following up his advantage, marched into Scotland, joined Argyle, and placed the power in the hands of the violent Covenanters. Flushed with success, Cromwell prevailed on the Council of General Officers, among other things, to demand of Parliament the punishment of the King for the blood spilt during the war; accordingly, His Majesty was seized, confined, and, after a public trial, beheaded on 30th January 1649.

To the death of the King, succeeded the abolition of Monarchy, the House of Peers, and the establishment of the Commonwealth. An elegant historian, who, drawing the character of this Monarch, says, "that unhappily his fate threw him into a period when the precedent of many former reigns favoured strength and arbitrary power, while the genius of the people now run violently towards liberty. His political prudence not being sufficiently strong to extricate himself from his perilous situation, exposed without revenue, and often without arms, to the assaults of unfettered bigotry."

CHAP. XIII.

The Covenanters protest against the Execution of the King-Commissioners sent to Charles, who agrees to their Terms-Montrose made Captain-General of Scotland-Receives Supplies from the King of Denmark, and lands in the Orkneys-Colonel Strachan defeats the Rebel Army-Montrose Tried, Condemned, and Executed in Edinburgh-Charles arrives in the Frith of Cromarty, and signs the Covenant-Cromwell invades Scotland-Battle of Dunbar-The English Army enters Glasgow-Cromwell goes in State to the CathedralThe Covenanters raise an Army-Is defeated by Lambert-Glasgow laid under Contributions-Charles crowned at Scone-Encamps at pod-Marches into England-Battle of Worcester-Defeat of the Covenanters-The King conceals himself in an Oak Tree-Embarks at Shoreham, and arrives in Normandy The Scots are subdued under Monk-English Judges appointed to the Scotch Courts-Cromwell appointed Protector-Dies, and is succeeded by his Son-Monk convenes a Meeting of the Nobility, &c. in Edinburgh-Repairs to England-Declares in Favour of Charles, who is proclaimed King-Great Officers of State appointed in Scotland-Ministers and Elders congratulate the King on his Return, and implore him to respect the Covenant, on which they are thrown into Prison-Covenanters prohibited from attending Conventicles— Prosecutions raised against them, at the Instigation of Mr. James Sharp-Sharp made Archbishop of St. Andrews-Committee of Privy Council meet at Glas gow-400 Presbyterian Clergymen ejected-Miserable Situation of the Country-Heavy Fines imposed on the See of Glasgow-The Covenanters raise a small Body of Men-Are attacked and defeated near Edinburgh—Magistrates of Glasgow fined for allowing Conventicles-The Privy Council enforce a Bond against Conventicles-The Highland Host appointed-Military ordered to disperse Persons attending Conventicles—Archbishop Sharp murdered-Captain Graham of Claverhouse repulsed by the Covenanters near Drumbog-Pursued to Glasgow-Privy Council take Alarm-Duke of Monmouth appointed Commander in Chief of Scotland-Battle of Bothwell Bridge-Covenanters defeated-A Number of the Prisoners executed, and others sent to Barbadoes→→→ The King suspends the Laws against Conventicles.

THE whole authority in Scotland was, at this period, in the hands of Argyle, and the Covenanters, who had engaged to defend the monarchial government; they, therefore, immediately protested against the execution of the King, and proclaimed his Son, Charles II., his successor, on condition of good behaviour and a strict observance of the covenant.

Commissioners were sent to Charles, who was then at Bredæ, when he agreed to all their terms. Montrose, who had been on the Continent prior to this event, received from the young King a Commission as Captain-General of Scot

« ÖncekiDevam »