Page:History of England (Macaulay) Vol 4.djvu/453

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page needs to be proofread.

the Roman Catholics, who, very naturally, were not solicitous to obtain any security for a religion which they thought heretical, or for a polity from the benefits of which they were excluded. There were also some Protestant nonjurors, such as Kettlewell and Hickes, who resolutely followed the theory of Filmer to all the extreme consequences to which it led. But, though Kettlewell tried to convince his countrymen that monarchical government had been ordained by God, not as a means of making them happy here, but as a cross which it was their duty to take up and bear in the hope of being recompensed for their sufferings hereafter, and though Hickes assured them that there was not a single Compounder in the whole Theban legion, very few churchmen were inclined to run the risk of the gallows merely for the purpose of reestablishing the High Commission and the Dispensing Power.

The Compounders formed the main strength of the Jacobite party in England; but the Noncompounders had hitherto had undivided sway at Saint Germains. No Protestant, no moderate Roman Catholic, no man who dared to hint that any law could bind the royal prerogative, could hope for the smallest mark of favour from the banished King. The priests and the apostate Melfort, the avowed enemy of the Protestant religion and of civil liberty, of Parliaments, of trial by jury and of the Habeas Corpus Act, were in exclusive possession of the royal ear. Herbert was called Chancellor, walked before the other officers of state, wore a black robe embroidered with gold, and carried a seal; but he was a member of the Church of England; and therefore he was not suffered to sit at the Council Board.[426]

The truth is that the faults of James's head and heart were incurable. In his view there could be between him and his subjects no reciprocity of obligation. Their duty was to