Imagens das páginas
PDF
ePub

many new and dangerous diseases; even such is that zeal, which is not guided by true knowledge, and limited within the bounds of charity; it fills the mind with many strange and dangerous errors, corrupting the judgment, which are the diseases of the soul; but doubtless those, that are truly religious, will qualify and cool (I do not mean, extinguish) the hot fervency of their zeal, with the sweet dew of discreet and pious charity, knowing, that God is a severe judge against those, who, passing by themselves, presume to censure others; which is one of those crying sins, which the land now mourns. The other head of that wrath-provoking monster, ingratitude [si ingratum dixeris omnia dixeris'] is that wretched sort of people, who falling, an infirmity proper to the drunkard, into the error of the left hand, are so besotted with the love of the creature, as altogether to neglect their duty towards the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

This brutish sin, drunkenness, may be called a sin of sins, the fruitful mother of a numerous brood, hateful even among the heathen; the Turks, amongst whom our English beer is of more esteem, than any other sort of drink, are severe punishers of drunkenness; in Cairo, a faircityMn Turkey, it is punished with death; among the Indians, in some parts, it was so severely punished with death that they spared not the magistrate, but gave rewards to them, that slew him in the time of his being drunk; such was their cruel zeal, or heathenish severity, permitting no time for repentance, as being ignorant what belonged thereunto, nor to set their houses in order for the good of their posterity. But the indulgent lenity of our magistracy, to the endangering of many souls, hath so provoked the Almighty to take the matter into his own, hands, that sometimes he hath also, for a warning to others, punished this sin by death; witness those untimely ends, some having died immediately in the sin, yea in the very house where they have so offended; others have broke their necks off their horses, and others, going a shipboard, have fallen between the ship and the boat, and so have been drowned, a manifest token of God's displeasure against that sin. Neither hath he spared the glutton, though a sin less scandalous, because not so easily discerned; yet no less detestable in the sight of the all-seing Almighty, witness that rod of many twigs, I mean the many diseases, and divers weaknesses, pains, and infirmities inflicted upon their bodies, and also the unfitness of their intellectual parts to any thing that is good: but now, in this time of reformation, better things are not only hoped for, but also expected, that the magistrate may be pleased, for the glory of God, whose substitute he is, and for the good of the commonwealth, whose welfare is committed to his care, to do his endeavour, according to the power and trust committed unto him, to punish, according to the laws of this kingdom, those that wilfully offend and continue in those gross sins, the foulness whereof is expressed, Deut, xxi. 20, 21. Prov. xxiii. 21. Rom. xiii. 13. Ephes. v. 18. Those which are drunken are drunken in the night, saith the apostle, 1 Thes. v. 7- If such modesty was amongst those, who, as yet, were not converted to the faith, or perhaps, as yet, had no knowledge of the truth; how great a shame is it, for such a nation as this, where the sound of the gospel hath been so long heard, to harbour such offenders, yea, to let them pass unpunished? the consideration of which, doubtless, will move the hearts of the pious magistracy of those times, to have a more vigilant eye over those irregular unlicensed private houses, which hitherto have been the more secure, because so little suspected, that not only the drunkards, but also the places of drunkenness, may be punished, whereby the good creatures may be delivered from those servile uses, or rather freed from those base abuses, which they are exposed unto, by unworthy intemperate persons. And also, whereby those, who deal in those creatures, may the more chearfully go on in their lawful callings, and the more assuredly expect a blessing from the Almighty, upon their careful endeavours, that so the company of brewers may be looked upon as supporters and relievers of a great part of the poor of this city and suburbs, and be had in such respect, and enjoy such privileges, as a brother company and members of this city of London, according to that admonition of the apostle, 1 Cor. xii. 14. The body is not one member, but many, &c. .and verse 18, God hath set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him, &c. which holy advice, let every one so observe and follow, that evilspeaking may be put away, that envyings and emulations may cease, that we may, all according to our degree, like stars in their order, fight against Satan, that common enemy to all mankind, who would deprive us of our spiritual Canaan; as the stars, in their order, fought against Sisera, who would have deprived Israel of their temporal Canaan; that the Lord may be pleased to shine upon these three kingdoms, with the blessings of truth and peace; that the affrighting voice of the oppressor may cease, and the cry of the oppressed may be no more heard; that all men may receive their due respect, not according to the greatness of their estates, but according to the manner of their getting those estates; that the ensuing year may be as it were a jubilee, wherein every true Israelite may return to his own proper inheritance; that the winter storms of wars, and rumours of wars, may cease, and truth may spring forth like a vine, with her clusters of plenty, and the peaceable voice of the turtle may be heard in our land. In the mean while, let every true-hearted Christian send forth such sighs and prayers to the Almighty, that he may be pleased to frame such hearts, in all the three nations, that with speed he may bring people from captivity, that Jacob may rejoice, and Israel may be glad, which the Lord grant for his mercies sake.

THE SCOTTISH POLITICK PRESBYTER,

SLAIN BY AN ENGLISH INDEPENDENT:

Or, the independents victory over the presbyterian party. The rigour of the Scotch government, their conniving and bribing; the lewdness and debauchery of elders in secret. A tragi-comedy.

Diruo et cedifico, muto quadrata rotundis.
Printed in year 1647. Quarto, containing sixteen pagei.

THE PERSONS.

Directory, the Scotch presbyter.

Sargus, Luxurio, two lewd elders.

Anarchy, an independent. Priscilla, his wife.

Liturgy, an episcoparian.

Moneyless, a courtier.

A pursuivant, officers, mutes.

PROLOGUE.

Presbytery and independency
Have long time strove for the precedency;
Here one kills t? other; when you see him die,
Wish his destroyer fell by liturgy.

ACT I. SCENE I. Enter Directory, Sargus, Luxurio, two Elders.

Direct, yT must be so.

X Sarg. If that he'll not comply: have you heard nothing from him?

Lux. No, he seems to slight our summons.

Direct. Let him smart fort, Luxurio, denounce him to the horn, after excommunication ipso facto: what madness doth possess him, that he'll not buy his peace?

Sarg. I sent one of my agents to him, who gave him timely notice, there was no way but punishment, except a fee.

Direct. Have you already fram'd the warrant?

Sarg. Yes.

Direct. Read it. [Sargus reads.

Bishops Liturgy.

We, the elders of the congregation demoniack, upon information and notice of some scandals that you have given, whereof we are to take notice, do hereby, as officers of the church, require and command you to appear before us, on Tuesday the seventh day of February, Anno l644, to answer such things as shall be objected against you.

Directory, Sargus, Luxurio. Direct. Send it away with speed: fond man, doth he not know that we have scourged lords, and trod on kings? that temporal force will aid our spiritual plots; Knox and Melvill have left power tous, ample as that Rome's bishop claims; I'll make myself as great as him, if I get foot in England: I hug my genius that doth prompt me on. No dull and heavy fancy clogs my soul, 'Tis purest fire extracted from the pole. If that I can persuade the Englishmen to let me noose them, as their brethren, I'll spread my pennons further yet:

And, like a comet in the evening sky, Strike with amazement every wond'ring eye. Let's be gone. [Exeunt.

SCENE II.

Enter Liturgy, Dipwell.

Litur. And why new Jordan?

Dipw. If we give credit to the card, 'twill tell us, like to that river through which once Levites did bear the holy ark, New River flows. 1 Litur. Tint can those tender virgins, that resort there to be baptised, endure the bitter blasts of Boreas's and Hyem's frosty breath, and not be much impaired in their health?

Dipw. The water, without doubt, is sanctified; and, as the holy martyrs, girt with flames, sang chearfully, as if they nothing felt, so compassed about with ice and cold, those, that we there dip, receive no harm.

Litur. Strange delusions.

Enter a Pursuivant, with officers.

Purs. By the command o' th' ruling presbytery demoniack, sir, I arrest your person. Litur. Where's your warrant?Purs. Here.

Litur. Ha, my inveterate foes have all conspir'd to work my ruin. Look here, friend; because I did refuse to come when summoned, nor sent a fee for my discharge, [shews Dipwell the warrant] so to maintain their lust and luxury, who, by their daily prodigality, consume their aurum Tholosanum, in riotousness, adultery, and fornication. O England! wilt thou be slave to these vermin? the vulgar do not know what will ensue, should they accept of a presbytery; those that do sit at helm will not discover it, for that it tends to uphold their pride ;md wantonness; good men are vassals to the vile: The Crown stoops to the mace, The noble to the base.

VOL. VI. V

While that the fathers of the church do walk like men dejected and forlorn,

Mourning like doleful pelicans, and howl In desart places, like Minerva's owl. Who would have thought so flourishmg a state, As England was but seven years ago, Should now become the pattern of all woe; Calamity and comfort comes and goes From state to state, as Neptune ebbs and flows; With human things, a thing divine doth play, Nothing arriv'd at height, but doth decay: Earth's toys are false, they bid us soon adieu, Her during sorrows are most certain true. Come, I'll along, Sir, with you: Mr. Dipwell, will you be witness of my usage with me?

Dipw. Sir, do not go, 'tis madness for a manto put himself into their hands that hate him.

Litur. Should I not go, they'll give me over to the temporal sword, and in the market-place proclaim me rebel, confiscate my estate, and send me into banishment.

Dipw. Will Englishmen put on this Scottish yoke? I have a hope the independents may send hence this government to be abhorr'd, from England to Geneva, where 'twas born.

Litur. Pray heaven it prove so. Now to my adversaries: my soul contemns their most usurped power, though now it overflows in tears, whose current overflows its banks.

Where griefs virago, upon either hand^
Worser than Scylla, or Charybdis, stand.

Exeunt.

ACT II. SCENE I. Enter Anarchy t Priscilla, Ms wife.

Pris. I'LL none of this same lousy learning to make my son a whoremaster, e're he hath seen the age of eighteen years; for, when they once come but to construe Ovid de arte amandi, their bowels yearn to occupy thenine.

Anar. Away, thou fool; doth not even nature tell us, that learning doth support the world, and taught the rustitk clown the way to till the ground, to bind the corn in sheaves, and wield the flail?

Pris. I say, I will not make my son a beggar, expose him to contempt and scorn; send him to Oxford, send him to Cairfax rather, and see him caper in a string; no, no, we, in this age of ours, the heavens be praised, have little use of learning; if he can read his psalter, and cast up his accounts for bread and salt; he's a sufficient scholar: Besides, heaven bless the parliament for their most pious acts in general and particular, that they have reduced those tippling black coats to a new modell'd garb, that, where before they drank too much, and eat too little, they now shall neither eat nor drink: What shall we do with such' lobcocks,

« AnteriorContinuar »