« SebelumnyaLanjutkan »
that was apprehended in supplying the vacated places by officers fully competent." Whatever might be provable concerning the design of this movement, no sagacity was needed to foresee its result. The high military commands would pass out of Presbyterian hands. Essex, Waller, and Manchester, the senior generals of the army, Warwick, at the head of the fleet, Massey (the hero of Gloucester), Denbigh, Brereton, and many others, who hitherto had allied the physical force of the patriots to the majority in Parliament, would furnish that important link no longer. The Presbyterians could not avow their party jealousy as the principle of their hostility to the measure. They argued against it from considerations of the ingratitude of discarding men who had rendered honest and able service; of the difficulty of supplying fitly the places they would vacate; and of the easy authority now exerted over the soldiery, as well as the confidence inspired in the State, by the rank and wealth of the men whose services would be lost. But the reasoning on the other side was too plausible and popular to be withstood. The vote of the compact body of Independents was strengthened by the votes probably of some men whom their general argument satisfied; perhaps of some men of too much delicacy to retain a precedence which was not cordially acceded; possibly of some men who were envious of the greatness of those whom the proposed action would displace. The “Self-denying Ordinance,” as it was called, was self denying passed by the Commons. It prohibited all mem- "...”
| Such is Clarendon's account (II. 434–437) of the debate and of the manner in which it arose. Godwin (History of the Commonwealth, I. 396) questions the correctness of the statement, on the ground that it was on the 11th of December (Journal of the Commons, III. 721) that an order was passed for a Fast, to be observed on the 18th, while the matter of the Self-denying Ordinance was first introduced December
9th (Ibid. 718), and it was passed by the
Commons December 19th (Ibid. 728). At that period offrequent fastings, Lord Clarendon may have confounded some voluntary solemnity observed on the 8th with that which by public authority was kept on the 18th; or he may have mistaken the debate which took place on the day of the passage of the Ordinance for a debate on its introduction. Comp. Hansard, Parliamentary History, III. 326-338,
1644. bers of either House of Parliament from holding * * office or command, civil or military, during the war. The
Peers rejected it once, and then, with ill-con- 1945. cealed reluctance and mortification, complied; not, ” however, till the Ordinance was so modified as to deprive it of its prospective character.” The Earls of Essex, Manchester, Denbigh, and Warwick, Sir William Waller, and numerous other officers of high rank, resigned, and received the thanks of Parliament for their services. Sir Thomas Fairfax was appointed General-in-chief; and it was determined to consolidate the army into a force of twenty-two thousand men. If anything would have reconciled the Presbyterian party to the Self-denying Ordinance, it would have been the prospect afforded of a riddance of Cromwell, as to his military command. But, whether by arrangement or by the course of events, this was not to follow. At the time of the resignation of the other officers, he was busy in the field. Parliament sent for him; but Fairfax replied with a special request to be allowed to retain him for a little time, till some immediate exigencies should be over. Cromwell constantly rendered himself still more necessary at head-quarters, and the General was indulged in not parting with him for the rest of the campaign. The longer he served, the more difficult was it found to do without him; and the idea of dispensing with his services soon became one which it would have seemed absurd to suggest. For the army was to be reconstituted, and the king was to be effectually beaten, and Cromwell and his superior were well informed, and well agreed, as to the ways of doing both. They proceeded to a vigorous use of the ample powers with which the new Commander-in-chief was invested by Parliament. Old regiments were broken up, and new ones were formed; capable and energetic men, hitherto unknown except to their comrades, received promotion; dissatisfied with their altered companionship, many officers, not displaced by law, voluntarily surrendered their commissions, to be bestowed on favorers of the new order of things. Especially chaplains left an army in which they found their influence greatly impaired, if indeed they were not often wounded by slight or contradiction. Among them were many of the most eloquent Presbyterian divines, who had been impelled to the field by an earnest desire to help on the work; and their retirement withdrew an agency which had been one of the hardest for the Independent interest to make head against. The new efficiency infused into the Parliamentary army by the recent arrangements was at once apparent. In Taunton, Colonel Blake, afterwards the famous i.” Admiral, was besieged by eight thousand royalists. Colonel Weldon relieved him, with a detachment of half that strength from Fairfax's army. Chester, held by Lord Byron for the King, was blockaded by Sir William Brereton. The King, with his nephews, led ten thousand men from Oxford to its relief. He took Leicester by storm; and the victory was used, as was the habit of Prince Rupert, with ferocious severity. Returning towards Oxford, the King was met at Naseby, in Northnata or amptonshire, by Fairfax, who had moved from * Windsor with about an equal force. Fairfax commanded in the centre of his army; the right wing was led by Cromwell, and the left by Ireton, Crom- less. well's son-in-law. Ireton was worsted by Prince "* Rupert. Fairfax, opposed to the King, with difficulty kept his ground. Cromwell drove from the field the regiments which confronted him, led by Sir Marmaduke Langdale, and, having sufficiently dispersed them, turned back to the assistance of his commander. The infantry about the King gave way. Eight hundred of his men were killed. Fairfax lost two hundred more than that number; but his victory was complete. He captured all the royal artillery and ammunition, and five thousand prisoners, of whom an usual proportion were officers. The King's military force was irreparably broken, and his cause had received an incurable wound. The loss of so large a part of his means for more fighting was not the whole, nor the worst, of his misfortune at Naseby. His cabinet fell into Fairfax's hands, with copies of letters to the Queen and others, disclosing the perfidy with which all along he had been acting in his transactions with the Parliament and in Ireland. Parliament caused a selection from them to be published. They justified whatever had been said of the ruthlessness of his schemes, and the danger of placing reliance on his word; and their effect was great in increasing the exasperation of his enemies, and in mortifying and distressing all, and alienating many, of those who, while they were willing to share the sufferings of an upright prince, shrank from a partnership with falsehood and dishonor." While the King escaped with some horse to hide himself in Wales, Fairfax recaptured Leicester; beat the royalists at Lamport in Somersetshire, killing three hundred men and making fourteen hundred prisoners; took Bath, Sherburne, and Bridgewater, the last with conclusion
is also no well-wisher to his Excellency [Lord Essex]" (Whitelocke, Memo
* While the question was pending, the Scottish Commissioners consulted
Lord Essex, Whitelocke, and Maynard,
- - of the first a garrison of twenty-six hundred men ; and civil war.
* See these papers in an Appendix to the Memoirs of Edmund Ludlow.
then proceeded to lay siege to Bristol, whither Prince Rupert had retired. It capitulated after a poor defence; which so incensed the King, that he deprived his nephew of his commissions, and ordered him to leave the island. With some troops which he had gathered, Charles again moved to the relief of Chester, but was there defeated by Colonel Jones, with a loss of six hundred men killed and a thousand taken prisoners. He escaped with a fragment of his force, and shut himself up in Oxford." The midland counties were overrun by Cromwell; the southern by Fairfax, who, in one affair, compelled the surrender of five thousand royalists. Chester was reduced. The Marquis of Montrose, the King's lieutenant in Scotland, after a short career of brilliant successes, was disastrously defeated by Lesley; and a force of three thousand men, mostly cavalry, was routed in Gloucestershire by Colonel Morgan, on its march to Oxford to reinforce the King. Its commander, Lord Astley, taken prisoner, said to his captors, “You have done your work, and may now go to play, unless you choose to fall out among yourselves.” A few detached posts still held out for a time; but, in effect, the first war was over, and the valor and conduct of the Independents had been conspicuous in bringing it to its triumphant end.” A brief survey of the occurrences of the next three years in England will suffice for the purposes of this history. After the “Self-denying Ordinance,” there seemed
1646. March 22.
* Whitelocke, 207.
* Three days after his arrival here, he held, at the Schools, his last Privy
Council, August 30, 1645. Previous to this, there had been ten Councils held at Oxford, all of them at Christ Church. The last session of King Charles's Privy Council at Whitehall took place January 8, 1642. Next it sat at Nottingham, August 30 of that year; then at Oxford, August 31, 1643. (Journal of the Privy Council)
fact overlooked by his readers:– “The great salvation, and glorious victories, which the Lord hath wrought for England these late years by any English power, his own right hand hath brought to pass chiefly by such despised instruments as are surnamed Independents.”
(Way Cleared, I. 22.)