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The Key to the Kings Cabinet-counsell.


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Note on the e-text: this Renascence Edition was transcribed, August, 2007 by Sandra Jones from a reproduction of the original as found in the Thomason Tracts, 1:E.4[9].

Content unique to this presentation is copyright © 2007 The University of Oregon. For nonprofit and educational uses only. Send comments and corrections to the publisher, rbear[at]uoregon.edu


Kings Cabinet - Counsell.
The secret Instructions of His Majesties Evill-
Councellors to their Agents, for first raising of Armes
against his Honourable House of Parliament.
With their devices for drawing the peoples hearts
to adhere to them; And the Councels by them used,
to uphold that new-sprung and unwarran-
table Act.
A L S O,
What meanes they did formerly, and still make
use of, for the maintaining their Armies; and link-
ing that Desperate Faction in an undividable knot,
tending to the destruction of His Majesty
and His Kingdomes.
Published by Authority, and entred according to Order.

August 2d LONDON,
Printed by Bernard Alsop

King’s Cabinet Councell.

Were there in man no feare of God, no honour to his King, nor respect of Religion, or Country; yet curiosity (the itching disease of active Spirits ) inforceth a desire in him to know, as near as his Intellect giveth leave, such matters of importance, as occurre in his own or other states. Tis true, we are forbidden to dive into Arcana Dei, & Arcana Imperii: but who liveth that faileth not in duty. If in this small Piece, which nice curiositie and desire of friends hath drawne from me, I erre in duty, relating these destructive passages; let my love to  my Country, and obligation to my friends excuse me. I shall flye no higher, nor begin my observations no further, then His Majestie, first putting the Commission of Array in action, and setting up His standard at Nottingham. The devices for drawing the people to him, and the Counsels then used, to uphold that new-sprung and unwarrantable Act.

First, for the Commission of Array, it must be made cleere by learned Arguments on the Kings part, to some of the wiser sort of the Gentry in those parts, where this Weed should be planted. And by subtle insinuation on the Weaker sort, that there was Ius Regis in the Commission of Array, Presidents of former Kings in like case produced and a large Booke in defence thereof, compiled by a man of much more Learning than honesty, (Mr.R.H.)  and for the greater luster printed and divulged: So that by this Artifice a great part of the Gentry presently sided with his Majestie, the common sort of people, some through feare compelled, others by affection blindely led on, untill at Edge-hill  many of them found the fruits of their vanities.

And not to digresse from our storie, give me leave to tell you that it was thought no small peece of Policie, in their best (of worst) councellors, to cover the Kings Hostile act against the the five Memmbers, and to have it distilled into the eares of the people by some Agents for that purpose appointed, that his Majesties intentions towards them was no waies ill, but of a Royall inclination, to sift out truth in a Parliamentarie waie (as he supposed ) And that before the House of Commons, without the least thought of violence to their persons, (although they contrarily conceived,) or to seek satisfaction for his (supposed wrong) And whether those speeches had been used concerning the governement of the Kingdome as his Majestie had been informed; with a desire to know the reasons of them, not so much.to inflict a punishment, as if in any thing he had failed, to receive lovingly their information and Councells, and by the advice of the Parliament to give a happie redresse to the growing evills of the Kingdome.

This by many of those instruments was deeply protested to, as also that his Majesties person, notwithstanding his innocencie, was in danger by a swarming multitude of unruly and giddy headed  factious Brownists, Anabaptists &c which in a rude, robustuous, and a most unparaleld way, sought the destruction of himself, his Royall Consort the Queen, and his posteritie.

Amongst the many peeces of Deceite they used this likewise was held none of the worst inventions; And as themselves say, was a main plot in upholding the Parliament, and drawing in store of money from the City of London, their onely prop, ( as they tearmed it) therefore, they say, it was busled into the eares of the most and abler sort of Citizens, that if they should freely and plentifully disburse their monies in this worke of Reformation, they should receive a double satisfaction, for the work finished, the Parliament intended by seysing and sessing all mens mens estates, especially the Malignants, to make them all become dependants uppon the City of London, according to the now custome of Geneva, which (say they) at the first made shew of Reformation onely in Church Government, as now doth the Parliament, and the suppressing of the power of the Clergie; But after they had taken away the Bishops and the Spirituall jurisdiction, they soon after fell from the duty of loyall subjects, and took from the Duke of Savoy, to whose Signiory the City of Geneva and parts adjacent did belong, both his yearly Revenew, his Title, and interest.

This they thought certainly worked much in the Nobility, Gentry, and the better sort of people, as a matter much inducing to the alteration of Monarchicall government, and the laying of a farre heavier burthen upon the people, by this dependency, then any of the pressures formerly obtruded upon them by the King, or any of his Predecessors: much more of this businesse was divulged and blazed (if possible it might have done it) to draw the hearts and affections of the people; from that they are so deeply obliged to honour and obey, as the greatest part under God of their welfare and protection, the High and Honourable Court of Parliament.

These fictions linck’d His Majesties then termed Guard of his person, not much inferiour to an Army, to the disposall of his too much unadvised Councell.

Neither was this all, for the ambitious Clergy, by the instigation of the then falling and decaying Bishops, and their strong hopes of their again rising glory, they very largely contributed (out of their perticular revenews ) to the maintenance of this unhappily begun distraction.

After the Fight at Edge Hill, His Majesties partie though they had then much the worst of it, yet it was a great incouragement to them (considering their tye they had upon the people,  which was but a slender one ) that they were not utterly defeated, but were able to bring a part of their Army off. Therefore for a more glorious shew of a feigned Victory.  And to draw the affections of the people towards them, Messengers must be forthwith sent to those parts, that were knowne to stand affected to their party.  As also, to others whom they thought this supposed Victory might terrifie, or some private ends might work upon for a generall Thankesgiving and rejoycing, which was punctually performed.

Then were there selected out of His Majesties party men of the best ranck and quality, and those also that were most beloved, and had the greatest power in their Countries, these were sent with private Instructions, drawn by the advise of His Majesties strongest Councell, and with a Declaration and Protestation of His Majesties sincere and cleare intentions concerning matters of Religion, His maintainance of  the Rights and Priviledges of Parliament, the fundamentall Lawes of the Realme, the birth-right of his Subjects, their liberty and propriety.

Neither were many of the Nobility then with him, backwards in joyning with His Majesty in the said Protestation, with the offer of their lives and fortunes under their hands, for confirmation of the same: Which how much it took with the common people, may by the ensuing actions be easily perceived.

These Gentlemen thus sent were likewise to intimate to their friends and acquaintance, that the Parliament at Westminster were absolutely over-awed by the Citizens of London, and most especially by the severall Sectaries there, who although few of them were of one opinion (and as they reported of above threescore ) yet like brethren in iniquity, they joyned together, not onely to take away His Majesties Prerogatives, but also Gods wordship, as of the Common Prayer Book, and the Ceremonies of the Church, which then strook deep in the mindes of the common sort of people, not having a capacity of so large an extent, as to know the true ends of Reformation.

And that all those Petitions presented to the Parliament by severall Counties, and with so many of the people to attend, and with so many thousand hands at them, were all or most of them drawne and penned by the Parliament Members of those Counties from whence they came, or by their instigation and solicitations, the severall petitioners were invited to these (as they termed them) unparaleld Parliamentary proceedings. Nor wanted their preaching Clergy incouragement by them sent, and other great ones, and much provoked by their declined Lords the Bishops, with a sad remembrance of the fat ambitious Clergies fall, in the Reformation of the Church in the time of Henry the 8. Having more feare of the like then of God, they highly inveigh in their Pulpits, and much more in private, against the Sects and Schisme of the time, and not against them alone, but of the Honourable Parliament, as Abettors and maintainers of them; that all Learning was now despised, and not in our Age to be esteemed, but trampled under foot, and nothing but ignorance and impudence cherished; and the meanest of Tradesmen preaching and teaching in Holes and Tubs, were upheld and followed.(Which if true, why in holes and Tubs?) And the Orthodoxe Divines whom formerly stood as Bulworks against Popery and all other Heresies and Schisme, discountenanced and imprisoned. Great pitie is it to see how these false and scandalous imputations, workes amongst the giddy headed multitude, who are turned with every blast.

Other Instructions also were sent to the Papists in severall Counties for large Contributions, which by the Queenes Agents were strongly prosecuted, and with so much Art and cunning, that in a manner it took from them all their sences, yea the sence of their own confusion; which from their now deep ingagements, from which they

cannot start, appeares to be little lesse. For from Contribution of money, they fell to a vowed assistance with life and estates, which many of them have already paid to the uttermost farthing, as a due recompence of their follies.

This was done by a fair shew and promise of tolleration of Religion, and all preferment at Court : As indeed it was too true in part, for His Majesty, besides what favours he had formerly shewen (for her Majesties sake, as we suppose) did prefer divers to great places of trust, and command under him, whom before were of no repute; or altogether unknown in Court.

Neither was this all, for it was very confidently intimated unto them by these Agents, that the Parliament did not onely intend to abridge them of their Religion, and to sequester their estates, but (to use their own words) to use them as their friends the Bishops (in cutting off root and branch at once) either to banish them and theirs into other Countries, or by active power of their Parliament (if they abjured not  their Religion, which (they said) they knew were  more dearer to them then their lives, they should suffer death by a farre more just Law, then Queen Mary did cause divers of the Reformed Religion to dye. And that they thought it but Gods just judgement and revenge, for the blood of his faithfull servants.

And I am sure you will not conceive that the two famous Factions of Spain and France in our Court were all this time idle; then it would have been suspected they receive their pensions for naught. I must give you a taste of their actions, I confesse, those of our English of the Spanish Faction moves not so swiftly as those of the French, yet more solid in dangerous designes.

Therefore at such time as His Majesty was much necessitated for want of money (as it is usually with him) his Army then ready to mutiny, and his Garrison Souldiers to plunder their Garrison Townes and so to quit them. The Spanish Faction propounded to His Majesties Councell, for a speedy supply of His Majesties urgent occasions, that it could be no prejudice to His Majesty, if the Kingdome of Ireland should be ingaged to the King of Spain, and that in the interim of the Treaty, the Catholickes of England should advance their proportion of money to a great height; And in truth this Proposition fell (if I may call it so) happily for the Kings Designes, though it were not intended for the good of him or his Kingdome, for this vain hope so besotted the Romish Catholicks, that they did lash forth their money plentifully. On the other side, the French Faction to crosse this, and knowing of what dangerous consequence it would be to France, if that Kingdome should fall into the hands of the Spaniard, did also propound; That if His Majestie should part with that Kingdome, which (they said) would much perplexe the Subjects of England and Scotland, and leave a heavy aspersion on His Majestie and Councell. That they would treat for a present supply of money, and ten thousand old Souldiers, for His Majesties service, and further supply as occosion should require; So that the French might upon all events, have for their retreat, some of our small Islands or Forts in this Kingdome: And knowing that the Spanish Faction had already been afore-hand with them in Contribution, (fearing they should be accounted negligent servants) suddainly raised a proportionable summe of money for His Majesties use, to ballance with their Antagonists the Spanish Faction. Which bred delayes in the debate; of which did not the paper take me off, I could give you a more full Relation both of these proceedings, and of matters of a deeper reach; Which I shall hereafter, for the good of my Country, willingly impart.

How destructive these courses and Counsels have been to His Majestie and Kingdomes, I leave to the censure of all judicious men, and the punishment of these Pests and Vipers, to the Honourable Court of Parliament. Whom God of his infinite goodnesse, I pray may guide and blesse in all their proceedings.

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