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cery, it seemed to the Little Parliament that some Court ought to be contrived which would actually determine these and the like Causes;—and that, on the whole, Chancery would be better for abolition. Vote to that effect stands registered in the Commons Journals;1 but still, for near two hundred years now, only expects fulfilment.-So far as one can discover in the huge twilight of Dryasdust, it was mainly by this attack on the Lawyers, and attempt to abolish Chancery, that the Little Parliament perished. Tithes helped, no doubt; and the clamours of a safely settled Ministry, Presbyterian-Royalist many of them. But the Lawyers exclaimed: "Chancery? Law of the Bible? Do you mean to bring-in the Mosaic Dispensation, then; and deprive men of their properties? Deprive men of their properties; and us of our learned wigs, and lucrative longwindednesses,—with your search for Simple Justice,' and 'God's Law,' instead of Learned-Sergeant's Law?"-There was immense 'carousing in the Temple' when this Parliament ended; as great tremors had been in the like quarters while it continued.2
But in brief, on Friday, the 2d of December, 1653, there came a Report from the Tithes-Committee,' recommending that Ministers of an incompetent, simoniacal, loose, or otherwise scandalous nature, plainly unfit to preach any Gospel to immortal creatures, should have a Travelling Commission of chosen Puritan Persons appointed, to travel into all Counties, and straightway inspect them, and eject them, and clear Christ's Church of them: -whereupon there ensued high debatings: Accept the Report, or Not accept it? High debatings, for the space of ten days; with Parliamentary manoeuverings, not necessary to specify here. Which rose ever higher; and on Saturday the 10th, had got so high that, as I am credibly informed, certain leading persons went about colleaguing and consulting, instead of attending Public Worship on the Lord's Day :-and so, on Monday morning early, while the extreme Gospel Party had not yet assembled in the House, it was surreptitiously moved and carried, old Speaker Rouse somewhat treacherously assenting to it, That the sitting "of this Parliament any longer, as now constituted, will not
1 vii. 296; 5 August, 1653.
2 Exact Relation of the Transactions of the late Parliament, by a Member of the same (London, 1654): reprinted in Somers Tracts, vi. 266-84.
'be for the good of the Commonwealth; and that therefore it 'is requisite to deliver up unto the Lord General Cromwell the 'Powers which we received from him!' Whereupon, adds the same Rhadamantine Record, the House rose; and the Speaker, 'with many of the Members of the House, departed out of the 'House to Whitehall: where they, being the greater number of the Members sitting in Parliament, did, by a Writing,' hastily redacted in the waiting-room there, and signed on separate bits of paper hastily wafered together, 'resign unto his Excellency 'their said Powers. And Mr. Speaker, attended by the Mem'bers, did present the same unto his Excellency accordingly,'and retired into private life again.1
The Lord General Cromwell testified much emotion and surprise at this result; emotion and surprise which Dryasdust knows well how to interpret. In fact the Lord General is responsible to England and Heaven for this result; and it is one of some moment! He and the established Council of State, Coun'cil of Officers and' non-established Persons of Interest in the 'Nation,' must consider what they will now do!
Clearly enough to them, and to us, there can only one thing be done search be made, Whether there is any King, Könning, Can-ning, or Supremely Able-Man that you can fall in with, to take charge of these conflicting and colliding elements, drifting towards swift wreck otherwise; -any 'Parish Constable,' as Oliver himself defines it, to bid good men keep the peace to one another. To your unspeakable good-luck, such Supremely AbleMan, King, Constable, or by whatever name you will call him, is already found,-known to all persons for years past your Puritan Interest is not yet necessarily a wreck; but may still float, and do what farther is in it, while he can float!
From Monday onwards, the excitement of the public mind in old London and whithersoever the news went, in those winter days, must have been great. The 'Lord General called a Council of Officers and other Persons of Interest in the Nation,' as we said; and there was 'much seeking of God by prayer,' and
1 Commons Journals, vii. 363; Exact Relation, ubi supra; Whitlocke, p. 551, &c.
abstruse advising of this matter,—the matter being really great, and to some of us even awful! The dialogues, conferences, and abstruse advisings are all lost; the result we know for certain. Monday was 12th of December; on Friday 16th, the result became manifest to all the world: That the ablest of Englishmen, Oliver Cromwell, was henceforth to be recognised for Supremely Able; and that the Title of him was to be LORD PROTECTOR OF THE COMMONWEALTH OF ENGLAND, SCOTLAND AND IRELAND, with Instrument of Government,' Council of Fifteen or of Twenty-one,' and other necessary less important circumstances, of the like conceivable nature.
The Instrument of Government, a carefully constitutional piece in Forty-two Articles: the Ceremony of Installation, transacted with due simplicity and much modest dignity, in the Chancery Court in Westminster Hall,' that Friday afternoon;the chair of state, the Judges in their robes, Lord Mayors with caps of maintenance; the state-coaches, outriders, outrunners, and 'great shoutings of the people;' the procession from and to Whitehall, and Mr. Lockier the Chaplain's Exhortation' to us there these, with the inevitable adjuncts of the case, shall be conceived by ingenious readers, or read in innumerable Pamphlets and Books, and omitted here. His Highness was in a ' rich but plain suit; black velvet, with cloak of the same: about ' his hat a broad band of gold.' Does the reader see him? A rather likely figure, I think. Stands some five feet ten or more; a man of strong solid stature, and dignified, now partly military carriage: the expression of him valour and devout intelligence,— energy and delicacy on a basis of simplicity. Fifty-four years old, gone April last; ruddy-fair complexion, bronzed by toil and age; light-brown hair and moustache are getting streaked with grey. A figure of sufficient impressiveness;-not lovely to the man-milliner species, nor pretending to be so. Massive stature ; big massive head, of somewhat leonine aspect, 'evident workshop and storehouse of a vast treasury of natural parts.' Wart above the right eyebrow; nose of considerable blunt-aquiline proportions; strict yet copious lips, full of all tremulous sensibili
1 Whitlocke, pp. 552-61; Newspapers (in Cromwelliana, p. 131, in Parliamentary History, xx.); &c. &c.
ties, and also if need were, of all fiercenesses and rigours; deep loving eyes, call them grave, call them stern, looking from under those craggy brows, as if in lifelong sorrow, and yet not thinking it sorrow, thinking it only labour and endeavour :-on the whole, a right noble lion-face and hero-face; and to me royal enough.1 The reader, in his mind, shall conceive this event and its figures.
Conceived too, or read elsewhere than here, shall Dryasdust's multifarious unmelodious commentaries be, and likewise AntiDryasdust's; the two together cancelling one another; and amounting pretty well, by this time, to zero for us. 'Love of power,' as flunkeys love it, remains the one credibility for Dryasdust; and will forever remain. To the valet-soul how will you demonstrate that, in this world, there is or was anything heroic? You cannot do it; you need not try to do it.—I cite with some reluctance from a Manuscript Author, often enough referred to here, the following detached sentences, and so close this Seventh Part.
'Dryasdust knows not the value of a King,' exclaims he; 'the bewildered mortal has forgotten it. Finding Kings'-cloaks so cheap, hung out on every hedge, and paltry as beggars' ga'bardines, he says, "What use is in a King? This King's-cloak, 'if this be your King, is naught!"
'Power? Love of power? Does "power" mean the faculty of giving places, of having newspaper paragraphs, of being 'waited on by sycophants? To ride in gilt coaches, escorted by the flunkeyisms and most sweet voices, I assure thee, it is 'not the Heaven of all, but only of many! Some born Kings I 'myself have known, of stout natural limbs, who, in shoes of 'moderately good fit, found quiet walking handier; and crowned themselves, almost too sufficiently, by putting on their own. 'private hat, with some spoken or speechless, "God enable me 'to be King of what lies under this! For Eternities lie under it, ' and Infinitudes, and Heaven also and Hell. And it is as big ' as the Universe, this Kingdom; and I am to conquer it, or be 'forever conquered by it, now while it is called Today!"
"The love of "power," if thou understand what to the man
1 Maidston's Letter to Winthrop, in Thurloe, i. 763-8; Cooper's Portraits; Mask of Cromwell's Face (in the Statuaries' Shops).
'ful heart "power" signifies, is a very noble and indispensable love. And here and there, in the outer world too, there is a 'due throne for the noble man ;-which let him see well that he seize, and valiantly defend against all men and things. God 'gives it him; let no Devil take it away. Thou also art called by the God's-message: This, if thou canst read the Heavenly omens and dare do them, this work is thine. Voiceless, or 'with no articulate voice, Occasion, god-sent, rushes storming on, amid the world's events; swift, perilous; like a whirlwind, like a fleet lightning-steed: manfully thou shalt clutch it by 'the mane, and vault into thy seat on it, and ride and guide 'there, thou! Wreck and ignominious overthrow, if thou have ' dared when the Occasion was not thine everlasting scorn to thee if thou dare not when it is;-if the cackling of Roman ( geese and Constitutional ganders, if the clack of human tongues ' and leading-articles, if the steel of armies and the crack of 'Doom deter thee, when the voice was God's!-Yes, this too is ' in the law for a man, my poor quack-ridden, bewildered Constitutional friends; and we ought to remember this withal. Thou shalt is written upon Life in characters as terrible as Thou 'shalt not, though poor Dryasdust reads almost nothing but the Flatter hitherto.'
And so we close Part Seventh; and proceed to trace with all piety, what faint authentic vestiges of Oliver's Protectorate the envious Stupidities have not obliterated for us.