Baxter - Houston-Packer Collection BX5200 .B352 1835 v1

LIFE OF RICHARD BAXTER. I69 Worcester. I challenged him to name one man of them that was at Worcester fight, or bare arms there, or at any time, for the usurpers ; and when he could name none, I told him that all that was done, to my knowledge, in sixteen years, of that kind, was but this, that when the Scots fled from Worcester, as all sought in covetousness to catch some of them for the sake of their horses, so two idle rogues of Kidderminster, that never communi- cated with me any more than he did, had drawn two or three neighbors with them in the night, as the Scots fled, to catch their horses. And I never heard ofthree that they caught; and I ap- pealed to the bishop and his conscience, whether he that, being urged, could name no more but this did ingenuously accuse the corporation, magistrates and people, to have appeared on all occa- sions in arms for Cromwell ? And when theyhad nomore to say, I told Them by this we sawwhat measures to expect from stran- gers of his mind, when he that is, our neighbor, and noted for eminent civility, never sticketh to speak such things even of a people among whom he bath still lived. . " Near the same time, about twenty or two-and-twenty furious fanatics, called Fifth-Monarchy men, (one. Venner, a wine-cooper, and his church that he preached unto) being transported- with en- thusiastic pride, did rise up in arms, and fought in the streets like madmen against all that stood in their way, till there were some killed, and thè rest taken, judged, and executed. I wrote a letter at this time to mymother-in-law, containing nothing but our usual matter, even encouragements to her in her age and weakness, fetch- ed froín. the nearness of her rest, together with the report of this news, and some sharp and vehement words against the rebels. By means of Sir John Packington, or his soldiers, the post was search- ed, and my letter intercepted, openedand revised, andby Sir John sent up to London to, the bishop, and the lordchancellor. It was a wonder, that, having read it, they were not ashamed to send it up; but joyful would they have been, could theyhave found aword in it which could possibly have been distorted to an evil sense, that malice might have had its prey. I went to the lord chancel- lor and complained of this usage, and that I had not the common liberty of' subject to converse by letters with my own family. He disowned it, and blamed men's rashness, but excused it from the distempers ofthe times ; 'yet he and the bishops confessed they had seen the letter, and that there was nothing in it but what was good and pious. Two days after, came the Lord Windsor, lord- lieutenant ofthe county, and governor of Jamaica, with Sir Charles Littleton, the king's cup-bearer, to bring me my letter again to my lodgings, and Lord Windsor told me the lord chancellor appointed him to do it. And after some expressionof my sense of the ahuse, VOL. r. 22