It doth now most evidently appear what were the intents of the malignant party when they carried the King from the Parliament to York, and there possest him with a hatred of it, as his Maiesties Declarations have in bitter words upon all occasions testified; inveighing against all the proceedings of Parliament, drawing away the Members, commanding them to come to York, and instead of discharging their duty and consciences in the service of the Parliament, to contribute their advice and assistance to the destruction destruction of it, endeavouring to possesse the people, that the Parliament would take away the Law, and introduce an Arbitrary Government; and hereupon men were levied by the counsell of the Malignant Party of the Kingdom, and an Army raised to ruine the Parliament, then through the instigation of these malignants the King besieged Hull, and afterward issued out the illegal Commission of Array, which having been endeavoured to be put in execution, hath bred all the uproares and distubances in most of the Counties of this Kingdome: and the Kings Maiesty being opposed therein by those who with constant affections do stand for the Parliament and the Priveledges of the Subject, is provoked and incensed unto such high indignation, as also by his affront received from Sir John Hotham by denying him entrance into Hull, that he is resolved to turne this land, which was a Canaan, flowing with milk and honey, into a red sea of blood and destruction, to make his subiects turn the edge of the sword one against the other, one friend to slaughter another, and such a bloudy confusion by a civill warre in England, as there hath been formerly by the bloudy rebellion in Ireland: for how can it be otherwise, when the King by the advise of his malignant counsellours doth raise an army against his great Counsell of the Parliament, and doth constraine and inforce many of his loving Subiects by compulsion and violence to yeeld to the illegal Commission of Array: and now having brought matters to a ripenesse, that the harvest of contention and dissention may be reaped by the bloudy suckles of swords, His Maiesty out of the high indignation of his supposed iniuries, being full and confident in his owne cause, hath with eleven thousand men strongly besieged the City of Coventry, and environed them so strongly, that there is no way possible for them to escape, unlesse that they betimes allay the indignation of the Kings designes, which are hitherto so violent, that he intends to make their City the obiect of the thundring Canon. and that their houses shall be beaten downe about their eares for their opposing of his Maiesty, in refusing to give him admittance into their City. With these and such like comminations and threatenings the people are much disheartened and affrighted, and to increase their feares, together with the whole Kingdomes, the Kings Maiesty hath commanded all his subiects on the North side of the Trent, and all places adioyning within twenty miles Southward thereof, on the obligation of their alliegiance, to attend his Royall Person upon Munday being the two and twentieth day of this moneth of August, at Dunsmore-Heath, where his Maiesty intends to erect his Standard Royall, being a great Colours or Ensigne richly adorned with the Kings Armes and Motto therein displayed. His Majesties Army Royall makes a great, daring, and illustrious show, consisting of eleven thousand Foot, and six thousand Horse, all in complete Armour: and moreover he hath six and forty peeces of Ordnance. Thus being stored of Ammunition, and backed by his evil Counsellours and Papists, he intends to make an expatiating diffusive warre, not fixing upon a maine Battalio, but to besiege and batter down Cities and Townes that will not resigne up themselves upon summons: so that his Maiesty is fully resolved to trie out the cause betwixt his Parliament and Himselfe by the Sword. These matters therefore being of high consequence, and considerable in the minds of all true subiects, let them take courage, and shew their resolutions now to oppose the malignity of evill Counsellours, to defend the King and Parliament, and to relieve the distressed city of Coventry.
The City of Chichester stands now in a good posture of defence, and have declared their Resolution to the Parliament, being resolved to adventure both their lives and fortunes for the defence and maintenance of the true Protestant Religion, the Lawes of the Land, the Priveledges of Parliament, and Liberty of the Subiect, against any that shall oppose it: yet some ill-affected persons have plotted to betray the Towne, and some Ministers have made seditious Sermons to that purpose. For the prevention of these and other disorders, and to prevent the danger that may arise by the malignity of the Popish party, The Lords and Commons do declare, that it shalbe lawfull for any of his Maiesties Subiects to disarme all Popish Recusants, and such as shall execute the illegall Commission of Array, or shalbe actors and assistants in any of the aforementioned oppressions and violences, or other aid or contribution for the maintenance of this unnaturall Warre raised by his Maiesty against his Parliament: and to seize upon their Horses, Armes, Money and other Provisions, whereby they might be inabled to disturb the Peace of the Kingdome.
Return to the English Civil War Publications Page.