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turn them out of door, and, as they see occasion, cut their throats, that the inheritance may be theirs. Whom can we suppose worse than Julian, than Domitian, than Nero? and yet these princes were obeyed, and did never proceed to the extremity of such desperate hostilities : nay Nero, as bad as he was, yet when he was killed, was quickly missed; for, in a few months, three princes succeeded him, and there was more blood of the citizens spilt in those few months than in Nero's fourteen years. And who please, both for their pleasure and their instruction, to read the encomium of Nero written by the incomparable Cardan, shall find that the worst of princes do much more good than they do harm. But, "semper corpori grave est caput,” “the head always aches, and is a burden to the shoulders," and we complain much of every little disorder. Put case a prince by injustice do violence to some of his subjects, what then? “Qui unum, qui plures occidit, non tamen reip. læsæ reus, sed cædis," said Seneca ; " It is not the killing of some citizens that destroys the commonwealth :” and there are not many princes that proceed so far as to do open and professed wrong to the lives of their subjects; but many subjects have done violence, open and apparent, to the lives of their princes; and yet the subjects are aptest to complain. Quis princeps apud nos regnavit è vicecomitum aut Sfortiadum familia, quem non aliquis civis noster, etiam sine causa, sed sola ambitione, ferro aggressus sit? pauci certe;” “Which of our princes of such and such a family hath not been set upon to be murdered by some of their subjects, without cause, but merely out of ambition ? very few."-And he that reads Hector Boethius's History of Scotland, may say as much as Cardan, and for a long time. Every man complains of kings and governors ; we love them not, and every little thing makes him a tyrant: but it is in this case ás in the case of women, Albericus Gentilis; 'we cannot be without them, and yet we are not pleased, when we are tied to them. If any such thing could happen, that a king had a mind to destroy his people, by whom should he do it ? He alone can hardly do it; and he eould hardly arm his people against themselves. But what should he get by it? he cannot be so unreasonable: but suppose it, what then ? "Oppression will make a wise man mad,” saith Solomon: and there are some temptations
bigger than a man's strength; and this would be one of them, and the people would be vexed into the sin of rebellion; and then, it may be, God would cut him off, and punish the people; and here would be calamity enough in this whole intercourse, but nothing lawful. For we have nothing dearer to us than our lives and our religion: but, in both these cases, we find whole armies of Christians dying quietly, and suffering persecution without murmur.
But it cannot be done, it cannot easily be supposed, that an evil prince should be otherwise than one that is cruel and unjust, and this to fall upon some persons : for let him be lustful, he shall not ravish the commonwealth; and if he be bloody, his sword cannot cut off very great numbers; and if he be covetous, he will not take away all men's estates : but if a war be made against him, these evils will be very much more universal ; for the worst of princes that ever was, hath obliged a great many, and some will follow him out of duty, some for fear, some for honour, and some for hopes; and then as there is no subject that complains of wrong, but he hath under the government received more right than wrong, so there is none that goes to do himself right (if that be all he intends, and not covetous and ambitious designs), but in the forcing it he will find more wrong than right.
16. (3.) But I demand, 'Are there no persons, from whom if we receive wrong we must not be avenged of them? To a Christian it had been a more reasonable inquiry, whether there be any persons of whom we may be avenged. Certainly there are none of whom we may be avenged without the aid or leave of the public power. But what if our fa. ther do us wrong? may we strike him? 'Opynv traspòs pépelv, “To bear our father's unjust wrath,” was one of the precepts, the young man of Eretria had learnt of Zeno : and what then if we be injured by the public father? "Magno animo regis, velut parentis contumeliam tulit;" it was said of Ly. siniachus: “Et ut parentum sævitiam, sic patriæ, patiendo ac ferendo leniendam esse," said Livy. If we must bear with our fathers, so also with our princes.'—“ Vi quidem regere patriam aut parentes, quanquam et possis, et delicta corrigas, inportunum est,” said Sallust'; “ Though it were in your power, though you might reform some evils, yet to rule your Bell. Jug. cap. 4. Havercamp. vol. 1. pag. 11.
parents or your prince by force is not reasonable."-And it was an excellent saying which Cicerom had from Plato: “Id enim Plato jubet, quem ego vehementer auctorem sequor ;tantum contendere in republica, quantum probare tuis civibus possis; vim neque parenti, neque patriæ afferri oportere. Atque hanc quidem ille causam sibi, ait, non attingendæ reipublicæ fuisse; quod cum offendisset populum Atheniensem prope jam desipientem senectute, cumque eum nec persuadendo, nec cogendo regi posse vidisset, cum persuaderi posse diffideret, cogi fas esse non arbitraretur;" "To contend and fight in a commonwealth can never be approved by the citizens : strive so much as you can justify: but must offer force neither to your parents nor to your country, that is, the supreme government of your country. And when Plato saw the people of Athens almost doting with age, he despaired of prevailing upon them by persuasion; but yet to compel them by force he concluded to be impious.” But can any man lose by patience? hath it no reward ? or is there no degree of counsel in it? that is, is not some patience acceptable, though it be not necessary ? shall it have no reward, if it be more than we are bound to? If it shall be rewarded, though it be greater than is simply necessary, then it is certain, that whatever we suffer under evil princes, to be quiet and peaceable is infinitely better than to resist : for that shall have a good reward : this seldom misses an ill one. But if there be no counsel, no degree of uncommanded patience, then all patience is necessary; for it is certain none is sin : for Christ was glorified by suffering the greatest injuries, and his martyrs have trodden the same way of the cross ; and so must we, if God calls us to it, if we will be his disciples.
17. (4.) But again I consider, Does every subject, that is a wicked man, forfeit the right in his estate, otherwise than law appoints? Is dominion founded in grace i or is it founded in law and labour, in succession and purchase ? And is it not so in princes ? with this only difference, that their rights of government are derived from God immediately; for none but he can give a power of life and death : can therefore any one take away, what they did not give? or can
» Ad Divers. i. 8. Priestley's Cicero, vol. 4. pag. 22.
a supreme prince lose it by vice, who did not get it by virtue, but by gift from God? If a law were made to divest the prince of his power in case of ill government, then he were not the man I mean, he is not supreme but subordinate, and did rule precariously, that is, as long as his superior judges will give him leave. But for the supreme he is sacred and immured, just as the utmost orbs of heaven are uncircumscribed ; not that they are positively infinite, but because there is nothing beyond them : so is the supreme magistrate, nothing is above him but God: and therefore in this case, we may use the words of Livy; "Si quis adversus ea fecisset, nihil ultra quam inprobe factum adjecit lex;" • If he does any thing against reason and justice, there is no more to be said but that it was ill done.' But if he does not do his duty, that is no warranty for me not to do mine; and if obedience and patience be a duty, then the one is as nécessary, and the other is more necessary when he does not do what he ought. And after all, the supreme power in every Christian republic hath no power to kill a subject without law, nor to spoil him of his goods. Therefore neither can a subject kill or exauctorate the supreme at all; for there is no law to do it: and if he be the supreme power, he is also lawgiver, and therefore will make no such law against himself; and if he did, he were neither wise nor just.
18. Either then stop all pretences, or admit all. If you admit any case, in which the subjects may fight against their prince, you must admit every case that he will pretend who is the judge of one. But because government is by God appointed to remedy the intolerable evils of confusion, and the violence and tyranny of every strong villain, we must keep ourselves there ; for if we take the sword, or the power, or the legislation, or the judicature, or the impunity, from the supreme, we return to that state of evil from whence we were brought by government. For certain it is, all the personal mischiefs and injustices, done by an evil prince, are infinitely more tolerable than the disorders of a violent remedy against him. If there be not a dernier resort,' or 'a last appeal' fixed somewhere, mischiefs will be infinite; but the evils that come from that one place, will soon be numbered, and easier suffered and cured.
19. It were easy to add here the sentences of the wise
heathen to this very purpose ; for though religion speaks loudest in this article, yet nature herself is vocal enough: but I have remarked some already occasionally, to the same sense with that of Tacitus, “Imperatores bonos voto expetendos, qualescunque tolerandos:” so the wiser Romans at last had learnt their duty. The same also was the sentence of the Greeks P;
Τας των κρατούντων άμαθίας φέρειν χρεών “We must patiently suffer the follies of our rulers.”—So did the Persians.
quamvis crudelibus, æque
Paretur dominis , “Though the lords be cruel, yet you must obey them as well as the gentle.”—But I am weary of so long telling a plain story. He that is not determined by these things, I sup-. pose, will desire to see no more. But if he does, he may please to see many more particulars in Barclay, in Grotius, in Monsieur de la Noue, in Albericus Gentilis, in Scipio Gentilis, in Bishop Bilson, in Petrus Gregorius and Bodinus. I conclude,-Many supreme princes have laid aside their kingdoms, and have exchanged them for honour and religion; and many subjects have laid aside their supreme princes or magistrates, and have exchanged them for liberty and justice. But the one got, and the other lost: they had real advantages; and these had words in present, and repentance in reversion.
The supreme civil Power is also supreme Governor over all
Persons, and in all Causes ecclesiastical. 1. If this rule were not of great necessity for the conduct of conscience, as being a measure of determining all questions concerning the sanction of obedience to all ecclesiastical laws, the duty of bishops and priests to their princes, the necessity of their paying tribute, and discharging the
• Histor. 4. cap. 8. Valp. ed. vol. 3. pag. 267.