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have seemed to give a greater impetus to the cause for
which they died. Yet that cause in its essentials was
destroyed beyond resuscitation. Carlyle's exultant paean

1 Cal. S. P. Dom., Chas. I, diii, 56, ix


over the blow struck by the English regicides at " Flun-
keyism Cant and Cloth-worship " l seems strangely beside
the mark. Flunkeyism and cloth-worship have flourished
since with unexampled vigour. It was on the substance,
not on the externals, that the blow fell. The Stuarts
indeed came back, but on a very different footing from
Charles's idea of sovereignty, and soon to be curtly dis-
missed almost without a struggle. The Church came back,
but not the Church of Laud. If we regard the execution
as at once an evil and a foolish deed, we yet must own
that it heralded the birth of a new England, free at home,
and great beyond the seas. And that these men should
dare to treat a king as " a public officer who had criminally
betrayed his trust," put a different complexion on kingship
in the minds of countless thousands.

The Parliament which was to set up a Court to try the
King was by no means the same Parliament which for six
years had alternately waged war against and negotiated
with him. In December the army, fresh from its victory
over the Scots at Preston, had entered London and quietly
filled the approaches to Westminster. On the 6th and 7th
Westminster Hall was occupied by troops, and Colonel
Pride, acting under the orders of Lord Grey of Groby, him-
self a member, " purged " the house of one hundred and
forty-three members, whom he placed under arrest. The
remaining members, who continued to sit, became by this
act the mere creatures of military violence. The army was
their master, and through them the master of the State. 2
On 6th January, after much discussion and some altera-
tions, an Act was finally passed constituting a Court to
consist of one hundred and thirty-five Commissioners, who
were to be both judges and jury, to try Charles Stuart for
having " had a wicked design totally to subvert the ancient
and fundamental laws and liberties of the nation, and in

1 Cromwell's Letters, Ixxxvi.

2 Gardiner, Civil War, ch. Ixviii.


their place, to introduce an arbitrary and tyrannical gov-
ernment," and on other counts.

Among the Commissioners were the following Sussex
men, Colonel Goffe, one of the military members of the
Commission, and nine Members of Parliament: Herbert
Morley, John Fagge, Roger Gratwick, Anthony Stapley,
Peregrine Pelham, James Temple, William Cawley, Sir
Gregory Norton, and John Downes. Colonel Morley at-
tended the trial on three days, including the opening, but
declined to sign the death-warrant; Colonel Fagge, who
had married Morley's sister Mary, also sat, but rather as
assisting in the preliminaries than as a judge, and he also
did not sign the death-warrant. Roger Gratwick did not

The actual trial began on 2Oth January; when the roll
was called sixty-eight of the judges answered to their
names. On the 27th Charles was brought up to hear his
sentence, sixty -seven Commissioners being present. A
death-warrant had been drawn up some days earlier, but
the signatures of less than half the sitting Commissioners
had been obtained to it and some delay had been occa-
sioned. On Bradshaw's stating that a sentence had been
agreed upon, but that before it was read the Court was
willing to hear what Charles wished to say, provided he
did not question its jurisdiction, the King replied that he
had acted on behalf of the liberties of his subjects and not
in his own interests, and ended by asking to be heard before
the Lords and Commons in the Painted Chamber: he ap-
pealed in fact from the specially constituted Court to a
political assembly. 1

It was stated afterwards that John Downes, member for
Arundel, excited Cromwell's anger by an intention to rise
and to plead publicly that the King's request should be
granted. 2 It was a critical moment, as there is little doubt

1 Gardiner, Civil War, ch. Ixx. a State Trials, vol. i, 210-3.


that a number of even the sitting Commissioners were
anxious to clutch at any straw which would save them
from passing condemnation. But the Court adjourned for
half an hour to consider the King's request, and Cromwell's
determination prevailed. Downes alleged at his trial in
I66O 1 that he had been frightened into assenting to the
judgement; and his case was no doubt the case of several
others. The Court returned, and the formal sentence was

To obtain sufficient signatures to the death-warrant to
give an appearance of unanimity among the acting Com-
missioners, the utmost pressure, including even, it is said,
physical violence, was used. In one way or another fifty-
nine signatures were procured. Among these figure the
names of seven Sussex Commissioners:



On Tuesday 3oth January the King was executed at
Whitehall. He was accompanied to the scaffold by Bishop
Juxon, a native of Sussex, who had been allowed to visit
and to pray with him while he was lying under sentence
of death. The press of soldiers, horse and foot, drawn up
around the scaffold, made it impossible for his voice to
reach the crowd of citizens beyond, and he therefore de-
livered his last speech to Juxon and Colonel Tomlinson, a
Parliamentary officer of humanity and discretion. He ex-
pressed clearly and without reservation the absolutist theory
for which he had fought and was dying. " For the people,"

1 State Trials, vol. i, 212.



he said, " truly I desire their liberty and freedom as much
as anybody whatsoever; but I must tell you that their
liberty and freedom consists in having government, those
laws by which their lives and their goods may be most
their own. It is not their having a share in the govern-
ment; that is nothing appertaining unto them. A subject
and a sovereign are clean different things; and therefore,
until you do that I mean that you put the people in that
liberty they will never enjoy themselves."

Nothing could be more explicit or illuminating than
this last dying declaration ; it is worth volumes of dis-
quisitions on the causes of the war.

Charles, having stated at Juxon's instance that he died
" a Christian according to the Church of England," then
divested himself of his cloak, and handing his George to
the bishop, uttered the single " Remember." Of its import
many theories have been held : it probably referred to the
deliverance of certain messages to his family with which
he had already charged him. The King then bowed his
head to the block.

Juxon was permitted to bury his master's body in St.
George's Chapel at Windsor, and the funeral took place
on 8th February. He had prepared himself to read the
burial service from the Book of Common Prayer, but the
governor of the Castle, with wanton tyranny, forbade the
use of any form but that of the Directory, a service book
after the most approved pattern of Puritanism, prepared
by the Westminster Assembly of divines.

As has already been noted, Dr. Juxon was a native of
Sussex. He was born at Chichester in the year 1582.'
His father, Richard, son of John Juxon, a citizen of Lon-
don, was Receiver-General for the Bishop of Chichester's
estates. Richard Juxon's brother Thomas is said to have
" suffered for his religion at Chichester." In Foxe's Book

1 " 1582. Oct. 24, William, son of Richard Juxon, baptized" (P. R.
St. Peter the Great, Chichester).


of Martyrs, where the name is given as Iveson, it is stated
that he was apprehended and examined by Bishop Bonner
at the same time as Derrick Carver, and burnt at Chichester
in I555- 1 Educated at Merchant Taylors' School and
St. John's College, Oxford, William Juxon became a student
of Gray's Inn, but shortly exchanged law for divinity, and
took orders. He was appointed vicar of St. Giles, in Ox-
ford, and afterwards rector of Somerton. On Laud's eleva-
tion to the episcopate in 1621, Juxon was chosen at Laud's
instance to succeed him as President of St. John's College.
His rise thereafter was rapid. He became successively
Chaplain to the King, Prebendary of Chichester, Dean of
Worcester, Clerk of the Closet, and in 1633 Bishop of Lon-
don, Laud having been advanced to Canterbury. He was
not only an eminent churchman, noted for his plain and
practical preaching, his fine presence, his moderation and
power of avoiding offence, but a first-rate man of business.
In 1636 the King took the unusual course of appointing
him Lord High Treasurer, an office which had not been
held by an ecclesiastic since the reign of Henry VII. Laud
was greatly elated at this appointment. " Now," he wrote,
" if the Church will not hold up themselves under God I
can do no more." 2 He did not reflect that the umbrage
given to the leading laymen of the country by this prefer-
ment of a divine might do the Church more harm than
good. Juxon proved an excellent financier. Fuller says:
" It was a troublesome place in those times, it being ex-
pected that he should make much brick, with very little
straw allowed unto him. Large then the expenses, low the
revenues of the Exchequer. Yet those coffers which he
found empty he left filling; and had left full, had peace
been preserved in the land, and he continued in his place.
Such was the mildness of his temper that petitioners for
money (when it was not to be had) departed well-pleased

1 See Lower's Worthies, p. 80.

2 Laud, Diary, 6th March 1635.


with his denials, they were so civilly languaged. It must
justly seem a wonder that whereas few spake well of
bishops at that time (and lord-treasurers at all times are
liable to the complaints of a discontented people), though
both offices met in this man, yet with Demetrius, ' he was
well reported of all men, and of the truth itself.' " l Juxon
was so highly respected by his religious opponents that he
was not deprived of his temporalities until 1649, having
lived tranquilly at Fulham throughout the war. He then
retired to his manor of Little Compton in Gloucester-
shire, where he is said to have kept a pack of hounds.
The fashion of clerical amusements changes as do other
fashions. Even a retired bishop may not be a master of
hounds to-day, though he may with perfect decorum play
bowls, a game forbidden even to the laity in the reign of
Elizabeth. 2 Perhaps he also passed some time at Albourne
Place, in Sussex, which belonged to his family. There is a
tradition that he lay concealed on the roof on one occasion
when the house was searched by a party of Parliamentary

Against his brother, John Juxon of Albourne, an infor-
mation was laid in 1647 by one William Bedwell, that he
had not paid his tax of one-twentieth to the Committee for
Advance of Money, or had been assessed at too low a
figure. " I know that my adversary Juxon is a neuter at
best; he has had 430 a year of my estate since 1640, and
now has the whole .620. He has ;ioo a year beside the
estate of his late brother Thomas, leased lands worth
250, and has a great manor in Sussex worth 700 to
800; also an estate at Fulham, Middlesex, and most of
the bishop's plate and goods, for all things are in common

1 Worthies, iii, 250.

2 " In 1567 a Lewes draper and five Brighton men were summoned
for playing this popular game, while the constable of Brighton was
called to account for not making search for bowling alleys and similar
places of unlawful games" (Viet. Hist. Sussex, ii, 197).


between them." John Juxon, however, satisfied the Com-
mittee with regard to his assessment and his payment of it. 1

At the Restoration Juxon was made Archbishop of
Canterbury. He died in 1663, aged eighty-one, and was
buried in the chapel of St. John's College, Oxford, by the
side of his friend and predecessor, Laud.

Colonel John Downes, the regicide member for Arundel,
acquired considerable notoriety at the time, not only by
his action at the King's trial, but also for a dispute with
John Fry, member for Shaftesbury, one of the King's
judges who did not sign the death-warrant. There had
been an altercation in " the Committee Chamber above the
Parliament house," in the course of which Downes accused
Fry of blasphemy and error. There was some colour for
the accusation ; it is stated that Fry was by turns " presby-
terian, independent, Arian; courted and despised by all
parties ; his works were doomed by the Parliament to be
burnt by the common executioner, as erroneous, profane,
and highly scandalous." 2 Fry wrote a pamphlet entitled:
" The Accuser sham'd or a pair of Bellows to Blow off that
Dust Cast upon John Fry a Member of Parliament by
Col. John Downes likewise a Member of Parliament." 3
In this he spoke of " those which have raised handsome
estates out of nothing, and vast estates out of mean estates,
since our general calamity upon the ruin of many, as well
friend as foe." Downes appears to have been particularly
open to this charge. Not only had he purchased the
Bishop's palace at Chichester, but he had been especially
busy in getting hold of sequestered estates of Royalists in
Sussex. 4

1 Cal. Com. for Advance of Money, p. 838.

2 Noble's Regicides, i, 247.

3 B.M., Thomason tracts, pressmark E. 624 (2).

4 For the proceedings which were taken in consequence of the
alleged bribery and other illegal practices at Downes' election for
Arundel in 1640, see Horsfield, History of Sussex, vol. ii, Appendix,
p. 29.


The King's death brought about a change in the con-
stitutional position. Hitherto the ancient constitution had
remained intact, although its normal operations had been
suspended. The Commons now proceeded to consummate
a revolution. They began by excluding all members who
had voted that the King's latest proposals had offered a
ground of settlement. They next abolished the House of
Lords, and finally the kingly office, as unnecessary, burden-
some and dangerous to the liberty, safety, and public
interest of the people. As an executive power they created
a Council of State to be chosen by themselves, and to con-
sist of forty-one members, to hold office for a year. Of
the Sussex representatives, Morley, Stapley, Cawley, and
Downes were members of this Council at different times.

The Puritan revolution was an attempt to reconcile two
opposing principles ; the first, that government should be
by and in accordance with the will of the people ; the
second, that it is the right and duty of godly men to
govern the ungodly. The godly men having organized an
irresistible army and seized the reins of power, and being
thoroughly convinced of their godliness, paid a lip service
to the principles of popular government, and proceeded
with all arbitrariness upon their godly way. From control
by an Army Council the Government gradually passed
into a despotism of one man. The rule of a benevolent
despot has much to recommend it: unhappily the despot-
ism is apt to swallow the benevolence. Cromwell, a man
by nature of wide tolerance he has even been blamed for
his incorrigible clemency was driven by the trend of
affairs to the most despotic proceedings. Strong man as he
was, political necessity was too strong for him. " No man
goes so high," he once said, " as he who knows not whither
he is going." It may be that with all his grip on business,
civil and military, he was not endowed with any great
power of foresight; his course at times seems almost a
career of drift, broken by ineffectual struggles against the



overpowering stream. By the strange irony of events the
absolutism to which Charles had vainly aspired was forced
on Cromwell ; " if nothing," he came to say, " should be
done but what is according to law, the throat of the nation
may be cut while we send for some to make a law." Its
failure in such competent hands taught England that
absolutism is near akin to anarchy, and insured her political
development on other lines.

After the execution of the King, the need of preventing
anarchy, and, as it was held, of preserving all that had
been fought for, forbade the establishment of a democratic
government. The survivors of the Long Parliament, now
mere creatures of the army, took such measures as were
possible to secure the status quo. In January 1650 an Act
was passed that every person holding any office whatever
should sign a solemn Engagement to be true and faithful
to the government as then established, without a King or
a House of Lords. Almost all the originals of these Engage-
ments have disappeared, but it happens that the Engage-
ment signed by 168 persons, including the Mayor and the
Town Clerk, of the town of Rye has been preserved, and is
of great local interest. 1 In January 1654, Cromwell issued
an ordinance which, after reciting that promissory oaths
and engagements were burthens and snares to tender con-
sciences, repealed the Act for subscribing the Engagement,
and declared that no such Engagement should be required
of any person, nor should any one who had not already
taken such Engagement be in any way prejudiced by his

Among those who refused to take the Engagement in
1650 was Lord Dacre. He was accordingly relieved of his
office of Vice- Admiral for the county of Sussex, and Colonel
Anthony Stapley was appointed in his place on i/th June.
There was some delay over the carrying out of this busi-

1 See The Rye Engagement by F. A. Inderwick, Q.C., in S. A. C.,


ness, for in the February Mr. Wynn, Registrar of the Ad-
miralty was ordered to give in writing his reasons for not
having prepared patents for making Colonel Stapley Vice-
Admiral for Sussex. 1

Stapley was reaping the reward of his consistent support
of Cromwell. He was now a member of the Council of
State, with lodgings in Whitehall supplied with " hangings
and other accommodation " at the public expense. 2 In 1653
he was appointed a Commissioner of Somers Islands the
Bermudas with a salary of 1,000 a year; 3 an office
which does not appear to have interfered with his other

Colonel Morley was a much less thick-and-thin supporter
of Cromwell's policy. He had resisted all pressure to sign
the King's death-warrant. The leading man in Sussex on
the Parliamentary side throughout the war, he still enjoyed
the greatest influence and popularity in the county; but in
Parliament he was becoming " almost a malcontent." With
Mr. Bond he acted as teller for the opposition to the bill
brought in during November 1651, to provide that the
House should be dissolved on 3rd November 1654, and
counted forty-seven votes. Cromwell and St. John told for
the supporters of the bill, who numbered forty-nine. Mor-
ley was a member of the Council of State during 1652 and
1653, but after the forcible expulsion of the House of Com-
mons by Cromwell in 1653 he seems to have taken little
part in public affairs until Cromwell's death.

The Royalists, though crushed for the time, were not
idle. In 1650 there was a widespread organization through-
out a great part of England " concerning an association in
the King's business." One Thomas Coke travelled into
several counties in connection with this plot, which aimed
at a concerted rising in various places. In 1651 he was
examined before the Council of State, and confessed his

1 Council of State Proceedings, 5th February, 1651.

2 Ibid., 2ist May 1651. 3 Thurloe, iii, 581.


proceedings at great length, revealing the names of all con-
cerned. It did not appear that much had been arranged in
Sussex, but Coke believed that among those engaged with
Lord Gerard, in his " design for Kent, Surrey and Sussex,"
was Mr. Henry Howard, the Earl of ArundeFs son ; and
stated that in Sussex Mr. Middleton was looked on as
a person who would engage, as also Mr. Lewknor, Sir
Edward Ford and Mr. Gunter. Coke visited Ford, who
added the names of Lord Lumley and Colonel Norton,
formerly Governor of Portsmouth; and advised Coke to
consult Mr. Ashburnham, which he had not done. 1 Prob-
ably all this was, at least as far as Sussex was concerned,
little more than brave talk.

One of Cromwell's first acts was to abolish the grievance
of free-quarter, which had weighed so heavily on the county
during the war. 2 With the inception of the New Model
attempts had been made to remove this grievance. On
22nd May 1646, Fairfax issued an Order: " Forasmuch as
the Army under my command have for some time past for
want of pay practised free quarter, to the great scandal
thereof, and to the extreme burden of the country, especi-
ally those parts which as yet do pay very great contribu-
tions to many garrisons, well nigh to the utter undoing of
the inhabitants. In consideration whereof, and confidence
of due pay for the future, I do hereby strictly charge and
order all officers and soldiers whatsoever, horse and foot,
duly to discharge their quarters, according to the several
rates expressed in an Ordinance of Parliament; ^d. a
night hay, 2d. a night grass, ^d. a peck oats, 6d. a peck

1 Portland MSS. (Hist. MSS. Com.), i, 578, 582.

2 In July 1652 Mr. Frost was ordered "to pay ^25 to Anne Dennie
out of the exigent money of the Council of State for quartering soldiers
at Goring House for three months." Anne, daughter of Henry Denny,
was the mother of George Goring, Earl of Norwich, and must have
been at this date of very advanced age, as the Earl himself died
in 1663, aged about eighty (see Cal. S. P. Dom., Interregnum,
xxiv, 61).


pease and beans, and also %d. a day for the diet of every
trooper or horseman, yd. a day for every dragooner, and
6d, a day for every foot soldier, pioneer, waggoner or carter
that shall not be officers by Commission. Every Officer by
Commission, or person of the Life-guard troop, shall pay
the full value for his provisions, both for horse and man."
If for want of pay it was impossible for them to pay at the
time, they were to "give ticket" for such provisions as
they required. 1 But this was a counsel of perfection, and
had failed to remove the grievance. We have seen that the
Corporation of Rye, in 1648, spoke of " the kingdom groan-
ing under the burden of free-quarter." 2 Even after its
abolition by Cromwell, it sometimes remained in fact.

The garrison of Rye, in particular, continued to be a
severe incubus, and we find the corporation petition-
ing for its withdrawal, and also for the repayment of sums
of money advanced to officers. 3 Later on, under the Pro-
tectorate, this grievance became very acute. It was com-
plained that the strict enforcement of garrison rules, as to
the disarming of strangers entering the town, had caused an
" utter cessation of gentlemen's access " to it, whereby the
trade of the town was abundantly decayed. 4 Another
vexation was the number of disbanded soldiers, and other
undesirable strangers, who were perhaps attracted to the
seaport towns by the general adventurousness of life in
such places. The established tradesmen complained of the
competition of these strangers in setting up and exercising
public trades and callings, and the authorities feared that if
suffered to remain until they became by law inhabitants,
they might in process of time become a parish charge. 5
These troubles, together with the increase of alehouses and
brewers, are mentioned as among " the visible causes

1 Perfect Occurrences, 22nd to 2Qth May 1646.

* Ante, p. 215.

3 Rye MSS. (Hist. MSS. Com., xiii, 4), p. 233. 4 Ibid., p. 230.

5 Ibid., p. 217.


threatening the destruction and ruin of this town if not

The case of the disbanded soldiers was a hard one
"who desiring to exercise manual occupations and other
means to get themselves a livelihood are denied the same
within several corporations.'" In September 1654 Crom-
well issued an ordinance dealing with the hindrances,
such as by-laws and customs, imposed on them by such
corporations as that of Rye. He ordered that any soldier,
who had served in the army of the Parliament for not less
than four years, between 1642 and 1651, should be free to
practise his trade or occupation in any place in spite of any
legal restrictions. 2

With the establishment of the Common wealth the practice
of Puritan principles became more precise. Chief among

Online LibraryCharles Thomas-StanfordSussex in the great Civil War and the interregnum, 1642-1660 → online text (page 19 of 30)