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“ He levied also great sums by fines and imprisonments upon all men of 40l. per annum, and upwards, who refused to take upon them the order of knighthood; though in respect of their estates and quality they were altogether unfit. Thus they were thrustinto knighthood, or a gaol, upon refusing to pay this unjust romantic imposition, which turned industry into errantry. James Maliverer, Will. Ingleby, and Thomas Moyser, Esqrs, Yorkshire gentlemen, were severely fined (Maliverer in 20001.) as a composition for the order of knighthood, whereas he might have been a baronet for half the money.”—Ibid. p. 110. “ Multitudes being summoned on this accasion, the composition brought the king in above 100,0001.”--Rapin, Vol. x. p. 253.
Unjust projects of all kinds,” Lord Clarendon owns, were set on foot; many ridiculous, many scandalous, and all very grievous, which served only to offend and incense the people, and brought little supplies to the king, yet raised a great stock for expostulation, murmur, and complaint. Many persons of best quality, under peerage, were conmitted to several prisons, with circumstances unusual and unheard of, for refusing to pay money required by those extraordinary ways.”—Clarend. Vol. 1. p. 26, 67.
“ He granted monopolies, i. e. by letters patents formed companies, to whom alone he gave the privilege of selling certain wares, and who were to pay him for it such a yearly revenue. This was directly contrary to the rights of the people, and very destructive to trade; but in those days the good of the nation was what the court had least
in view. This abuse went so far, that in a manner all sorts of coinmodities were monopolized, and the sale thereof engrossed by some company, even to old rags.”-Rapin, Vol. x. p. 249.
“ In short, there was no branch of the subject's property, which the government could dispose of, but was bought and sold. He raised above a million a year (in an arbitrary manner, and without act of parliament) by the imposts on soap, salt, candles, wine, &c.--Grants were given out for weighing hay and straw within three miles of London ; for gauging red-herring barrels and butter casks; for marking iron; sealing lace, &c.which being purchased of the crown must be paid for by the subject.”—Neal, Vol. 11. p. 204.
“ In a word nobody ventured to build any more new ships, because as soon as they were ready, the king seized them for his service, against the will of their owners."--Rapin, Vol. x. p. 126.
He extorted large sums of money also by an abuse of the court of wards : " by which husbandry all the rich families of England, of noblemen and gentlemen, were exceedingly incensed and even indevoted to the crown ; looking upon what the law intended for their preservation, to be now applied to their destruction." - Clarend. Vol. I. p. 152.
« Le sold the lands belonging to the royal domain, and created peers for money.” — Ibid. Vol. 1. p. 4. " The old laws of the forest were revived, by which not only great fines were imposed, but great annual rents intended, and like to be settled by way of contract; which burden lighted most upon persons of quality and honour, who thought themselves above ordinary oppressions, and were therefore like to remember it with more sharpness. The people were so immoderately vexed by the justice in Eyre's seat, that few men could assure themselves their estates and houses might not be brought within the jurisdiction of some forest; which, if they were, it cost them great fines.-By this great and terrible office, most counties in England had
been vexed and oppressed, and the most considerable persons in those counties. This having not been practised for some hundreds of years, was looked upon as a terrible innovation and exaction upon persons, who knew not that they were in any fault ; nor was any imputed to them, but the original sin of their fore-fathers, even for which they were obliged to pay great penalties and ransoms.”—Ibid. Vol. 1. p. 68, 273, 286.-Ibid. Vol. II. p. 475.
“Under colour of examining defective titles, all the proprietors of lands held of the crown, were obliged to produce their titles; to which, how good soever they might be, the commissioners made objections. So to avoid a lawsuit with the king, wherein they were sure to be cast, considering how the judges stood affected, the proprietors were forced to compound, and give a sum of money to secure their lands, which was looked upon as a manifest oppression."—Rapin, Vol. x. p. 294.
A great number of noblemen, ladies, and gentlemen of the first quality, (near 200 in number) were condemned in grievous fines to the king's use, for continuing in London, and not residing in their respective counties, and at their mansion-house, which the king by proclamation had commanded, as were also others for enlarging the city of London by new buildings.”—Hist. Stu. p. 125.-Rapin, Vol. x. p. 257. These impositions not being sufficient to answer the king's exi-. gencies," he erected an office for licensing his subjects to travel : another office for letters: another for forfeitures for such as spoil the highways : all these were enacted without a statute."--Hist. Stu.
“ Five subsidies only mentioned as intended to be granted in the second parliament,” Lord Clarendon complains, “were exacted with the same
rigour throughout the kingdom, as if an act had passed for that purpose; and divers gentlemen of prime quality were, for refusing to pay the same, committed to prison with great rigour and extraordinary circumstances. And could it be imagined, that those men would meet again in a free parliament, without a sharp and severe expostulation, and inquisition into their own right, and the power that had imposed upon that right? And yet all these provocations, and many other almost of as large an extent, produced no other resentment than the petition of right, of no prejudice to the crown, which was likewise purchased at the price of five subsidies more; and in a very short time after that supply was granted, that parliament was likewise, with strange circumstances of passion on all sides, dissolved.” - Clarend. Vol. I.
Let us hear this noble lord farther laying open the intolerable oppressions of the court, and the sources of the civil war. “ Supplemental acts of state were made to supply defects of law; and so tonnage and poundage, and other duties, were collected by order of council, which had been positively refused to be settled by act of parliament, and new and greater impositions laid upon trade. For the better support of these extraordinary ways, and to protect the agents and instruments employed in them, and to discountenance and suppress all bold inquiries and opposers, the council-table and star-chamber (two arbitrary and oppressive courts) enlarge their jurisdiction to a vast extent: holding for honourable that which pleased ; and for just that which profited : and being the same persons in several rooms, grew both courts of law to determine right, and courts of revenue to bring money into the treasury: the council-table by proclamations en
joining the people what was not enjoined by the law, and prohibiting that which was not prohibited; and the star-chamber censuring the breach and disobedience of these proclamations by very great fines and imprisonment; so that any disrespect to any acts of state, or to the persons of statesmen, was in no time more penal : and those foundations of right by which men valued their security, to the apprehension and understanding of wise men, never more in danger to be destroyed.”—Clarend. Vol. 1. p. 67, 68, 69.
“There was continual occasion to use violence; to seize the effects and to imprison the merchants, in order to oblige them to pay what the house of commons had declared illegal. The officers of the customs were impowered by the council to enter into any ship, vessel or house, and to search any trunk or chest, and break any bulk whatsoever, in default of the payment of customs. This had never been practised before: and these officers, under colour of searching, used a great many oppressions and rogueries, which made people exclaim the more.-"Rapin, Vol. x. p. 248, 249.
“ He sent letters under his privy seal into the several counties of England, directed to such persons as he thought best able to lend ; requiring by way
of loan such sums as each was taxed at.” This loan a noble army of patriots bravely refused to pay, and severely suffered for it « Sir Thomas Wentworth, Sir Walter Earle, Sir John Strangeways, Sir Thomas Grantham, Sir John Elliot &c. with many others (in the whole 22 knights, and other gentlemen of birth and character, to the number of 78) were imprisoned in the Marshalsea, Fleet, Gate-house, and other prisons, in counties most distant from their seats, for refusing to lend what money the council was pleased to assess them. Sir Peter Hayman, one of the barons of