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Forts, citadels, and standing armies will be your continual plagues.
Nobility and gentry must down, and betake themselves to the plough, to make room for the insolent monsieur.
A dog's life (hunger and ease) will be much better than yours; for you must be very industrious, though the fruits of your labour must wholly result into the king's coffers; you shall sow wheat, but shall not eat one bit of the bread thereof, throughout the whole year.
You shall be continually subject to as great a burthen of taxes, as your backs can bear, or your slavish industry pay. To prevent extravagancy, you shall be constrained to wear the meanest cloaths, and, for good husbandry, you shall trot about in wooden shoes, alamode de France.
These are the blessings, which a French despotical power brings along with it. But this is not all that a protestant country is to endure under the monsieur's tyranny, for he will make your souls suffer, as well as your bodies; and, therefore, I shall give you a short account of the compendious means, he will make use of, to pervert protestants to the idolatrous popish religion. He will send his infallible apostolick dragoons amongst you; and this is their way of discipline, in case you do not readily comply with them. The first compliment they use, is to quarter themselves, by violence, in your houses, and take especial care you do not make your escapes, or hide any of your goods or effects; then they will proceed to consume all the provisions you have in your houses, and seize upon all money, rings, plate, jewels, &c. and, in short, whatever they can lay hands on, and, afterwards, will expose your goods to publick tale, to the neighbouring towns and villages.
Having thus disposed of your goods, in the next place, they fall upon your persons, and there is no wickedness, or horror, which they will not put in practice, to force you to change your religion. They will hang men and women, by the hair or feet, on the roofs of the chambers, or chimney-hooks, and smoak them with wisps of wet hay, till they will be no more able to bear it; and, when they have taken them down, if they will not sign to what shall be proposed to them, they will hang them up immediately.
Another way they make use of, is, to throw people on great fires, kindled for that purpose, and forcibly keep them there, till they are half roasted. They also tie a rope under their arms, and plunge them to and fro into wells, till they promise to quit their religion and conscience; and, in this posture, with a funnel filled with wine, they pour it down their throats, till the fumes of it deprive their reason, and then they obtain their consents to be catholicks, as they call them.
Others they strip stark naked, and, after having offered them a thousand infamous indignities, they stick them with pins from head to toe.
Some they cut, in several places, with pen-knives; and sometimes, with red-hot pincers, they take them by the nose, and, after that, drag them about the room, till they promise to comply.
Others they beat with staves, and drag them, all bruised, to the
churches, where their forced presence will be accounted for an abjuration.
Some they keep from sleep, for seven or eight days together, relieving one another, to watch them night and day, to keep them awake continually.
They use to throw buckets of water, and torment them a hundred ways besides, holding, over their heads, kettles turned downwards, and drum upon them continually, till the poor creatures have lost their senses.
If they find any sick (either men or women) that keep their beds, distempered with fevers, or other diseases, their way is, to bring about twelve drums, beating an alarm, at the bed-side, for whole weeks together, without intermission.
It is their usual practice, upon these occasions, to tie fathers and husbands to the bed-posts, and ravish their wives and daughters before their faces. They pluck off the nails of the hands and toes of others; they blow up some with bellows, even till they are ready to burst.
These, and ten-thousand other villainous ways, the jesuitical spirit hath found out, to make new converts. Whoever hath the curiosity to see them, let him but peruse the history of the persecution of the protestants in France, and he will find, that the ten primitive persecutions were but mercies, in comparison of those monstrous torments, lately invented, and put in practice upon those miserable creatures, by the order of the christian Turk, Lewis the Fourteenth.
If you fall into French hands, you see what is like to become of you; your bodies will be condemned to irretrievable slavery; and your souls (as far as it lies in their power) shall be consigned to the devil. If you are not so wise, as to regard either body or soul, I have done with you, and so farewel.
REASONS FOR SETTLING ADMIRALTY-JURISDICTION,
GIVING ENCOURAGEMENT TO
MERCHANTS, OWNERS, COMMANDERS, MASTERS OF SHIPS, MATERIAL MEN, AND MARINERS.
Humbly offered to the Consideration of his Majesty, and the tvioj Houses of Parliament.
Printed in the year 1690. Quarto, containing twenty-two pages.
HERE is nothing can conduce more to the peopling and inriching a kingdom, or commonwealth, than a free and open trade; and, as that by sea is the principal source of such happiness, it may very Vol. ix. II h
well deserve the government's most particular care and application to advance it.
And since this is no other way to be done, but by enabling the king to set forth fleets for the merchants security abroad, and establishing good laws for defending them in their rights and properties at home, it is most humbly proposed, whether this may not be effected with the greatest ease and advantage, by resettling the admiralty-jurisdiction, and restoring the ancient power of enrolling mariners.
Usage and experience were always accounted very good directors; and therefore, the better to accomplish this design, it may not be improper, in the first place, to give a short account of the methods observed by our ancestors, in whose times our sea-dominion was at the greatest height, and trade in as flourishing condition as those ages would admit: And, in the next place, to consider of the best means to improve these methods, and adapt them to the present times.
The sea-coasts of England were anciently divided into several vice admiralties, viz. 1. Northumberland, Durham, and York. 2 Lincoln. 3. Norfolk. 4. Suffolk. 5. Essex. 6. Kent. 7. Sussex. 8. Southampton. 9. Dorset. 10. Devon. 11. South Cornwall. 12. North Cornwall. 13. Somerset. 14. Gloucester. 15. South Wales. 16. North Wales. 17. Chester. 18. Lancaster. 19. Westmorland and Cumberland.
Each of these places (the port of London being immediately under the admiralty-court, as to this matter) had a particular vice-admiral, who had power to hold a sessions once in the year, or oftener, if occasion required, and to call before him, or his officer, all seafaring men and mariners, living within his district or division, and then and there to enroll all their names and places of abode, taking account, likewise, of all ships within their jurisdiction.
This was the method used several hundred of years since, as appears by certain maritime laws and ordinances, registered in the ancient authentick Black Book of the admiralty; four articles of which are as follow.
1. Puisque l'homme est fait * admiral, premierement luy fault ordonner & substituer dessoubs luy pour estre ses lieutenants, deputez, & autres officiers, des plus loyaulx, sages, & discrets en la loy marine, & anciens coustomes de la mer qu'il pourra en aucune part trouver, par ainsy que par l'aide de Dieu, & leur bonne & droitture governaill l'office pourra estre gouverne a l'honneur & prouffit du royalme.
2. Item, Apres doit l'admiral en toute la haste qu'il bonnement pourra escripte a tous ses lieutenants, deputez, & autres officiers quelconques par tous les costez de la mer, parmy tout la royalme pour savoir combien de nefs,barges, balengers, & autres vesseaulx de guerre le roy pourra avoir en son royalme, quant lui plest, ou mestier lui fera, & de quel portage ils sont, & aussi les noms des seigneuis & possesseurs d'icelles.
•UltraA. n. I. 1,3.
3. Item, Pour savoir aussi par bonne, & loyalles enquestes pris par devant les dits lieutenants, deputez, ou autres officiers de Padmiral combien des mariniers defensibles sont ou royalme, & la cause est pourceque s'il soit de ce demande de Padmiral par le roy ou son conseil, qu'ily donques bonnement & justement a eulx monstrer le nombre tant de nefs, barges, balingers, & d'autres vesseaulx de guerre & aussi les noms des seigneurs & possesseurs d'icelles, comme le nombre de tous mariners defensibles parmy le royalme, & ainsy saura le roy & son conseil de certain tousjours sa force par la mer.
4. Et pource qu'il a ete plusieurs fois debatu en * Angleterre pour less arrers des nefs quant le roy + a mande sergeants d'armes ou autres ministres pour arrester nefs al ceps du roy, & les seigneurs des nefs sont venus devant l'admiral, & alleguent qui leur nefs n'estoyent mye arrestees, ordonne estoit ait tems du RoyRichard le Premier a Trymnesby par advis de plusieurs seigneurs du royalme que quant-nefs serent arrestees pour service du roy que le roy escripta par ses lettres patentes a l'admiral d'arrester les nefs, &c.
If the sea-faring men were not obedient to the vice-admiral's summons and orders, made according to the maritime laws, they had a coercive power sufficient to oblige them to be enrolled, and to go into the king's service, whenever occasion required.
This method of raising seamen was continued in good order, down to the end of the prosperous reign of Queen Elisabeth, from which time it began to be neglected, and so dwindled by degrees, till at last the use and practice of it quite vanished, insomuch that, at this day, the very remembrance of it is almost lost; and it is not at all strange, that it should be so, if we consider the temper of King James the First, the circumstances of King Charles the First, the late troubles, the remissness of the reign of King Charles the Second, and the designs of the late king.
During the two last reigns, who would not think, but the design was to transfer the sovereignty of the seas, and trade of the world, to France: since such industry was used by the kings themselves, not only to instruct the French king, in the building ships of war, and setting out fleets, but also in the giving him assistance in the compiling of his sea-laws, setforth in the ordinances of that king, in the year 1681? The French had from hence also the first foot-steps of their exquisite method of enrolling mariners. And, if it shall be thought fit for the kingdom's service, or in any measure conducing to our happiness, why shall we not follow likewise the more glorious example of our present king, in endeavouring to retrieve it? We have certainly the greatest motives that ever Englishmen had, to excite every one in his respective station, to give his majesty those hearty assistances, as may, under the blessing of God, regain the betrayed honour of the nation, and settle the peace, plenty, and glory thereof, for which, next to the establishment of our religion, our royal leader hath hazarded more than ever any of our kings did before him.
* Liter. C. n. 10. t If ancient usage and custom be law in England, there is little
doubt of their majesties authority lor pressing ships and mariners; but, for the satisfaction of the curious, they mav consult the Records quoted by Mr. Prynnc in his Animadversions.
Ml. U7, and altj consider the statutes, •; K. 11. 4- lSUVl.lw. s i. 3 1' St M. iti. »£!.». 43 Rl. 3. .
And therefore, since a ready way of raising a sufficient number of seamen to man the fleet is of the greatest concern in this affair, and the encouraging of them voluntarily to enter into their majesties service is of no less importance, it is humbly proposed, whether this may not be done most effectually by improving the ancient methods of pressing seamen, with a bill in parliament, to this purpose, viz.
1. That such seamen, as shall voluntarily enroll themselves in the admiralties, or vice-admiralties, may be exempt from petty offices, in the parishes where they live, and also, from the payment of parish duties, taxes, and the like, during their lives, or so long as they shall continue enrolled.
Q. That all prizes be divided into three parts, one third to the cap. tor, and his ship's crew; another to go to the chest at Chatham, to. wards a provision for sick and wounded mariners, and the widows and children of such as are slain; the remaining third, to pay the charge of prize officers.
3. That the act of parliament, 43 Elis. 3. concerning the relief of soldiers and mariners, be amended, and the money collected, by ver. tue thereof, transmitted to the Chatham chest, for the uses aforesaid. That money amounts to about fourteen-thousand pounds per annum, and may with care be made as much more, if it shall be found requi. site, and, as it is now ordered, is of little or no use to the government.
4. If it may consist with their majesties affairs, that the wages of captains, officers, and seamen be a little advanced, they being not so good, considering the present value of money, as they were for. merly.
5. That such mariners, as shall not voluntarily enroll themselves, or appear upon the vice-admiral's summons, or stand out till they art pressed, shall not have the benefit of the aforesaid privileges and exemptions.
6. That no captains, commanders, or seamen remain in foreign service in time of war, without licence, and that they return upon their majesties proclamation, under such a penalty as shall be thought fit.
If such a re-establishment of the admiralties and vice-admiralties were made, besides the benefit of easily supplying the fleet with ma. riners, these further advantages would accrue to their majesties, and such of their subjects and allies, as should be concerned in sea-affairs, which will tend very much to the advancement of trade and navigation.
1. In time of war, the officers of the several vice-admiralties might take the care and charge of all prizes brought into their respective districts, which would make the business much more easy, and also save a great part of the charge to their majesties; for it maybe easily demonstrated, whenever it shall be required, that this business may