« AnteriorContinuar »
banish to the French forts, or whip, or what to do, you were in a great strait. You thought to have been rid of them, but many more came upon you; the more you shed their blood, the more came upon you, to see if ye would shed their blood; the more you made your laws cruel, and the executions sharp, the more they came upon the sharpness of your laws and the cruelty of your executions. God everlasting, who fainteth not, nor is weary, of whose understanding there is no finding out, brought them in upon you, and perplexed you sore; yet you saw it not, but like as Balaam forced himself against the angel, who stood in the way, with his drawn sword, whom yet the ass saw and would have turned from, and spake to Balaam, when he struck him, “The dumb ass reproving the madness of the prophet; ” so you thought to have outwearied them by your laws; you thought to have made them faint by your executions; the everlasting God was in the midst of them, and the shout of a king was amongst them, which made you fear and tremble when none pursued you, or came upon you to do you any harm. “What shall we do with the Quakers?” was the cry; some said this, some said that. “Away with them into the wilderness,” was the result at last; whip some, dispatch the rest, hasten them away, leave them two days’ journey in the wilderness, amongst wolves, bears, and necessity, want of water, and drought, places uninhabitable, and hardly passable. Perhaps they will be there wearied, or they may perish, or they may never more come upon us. So into the wilderness they were driven, and these two amongst the rest, encountering the straits thereof, and almost impossible ever to come out, at least without some mischief or hurt; but the Lord was with them, and brought them to Rhode Island and Providence, and refreshed them. Thus were your laws for death broken, and the Lord God came amongst you and snapped them asunder; you became ridiculous by how much that you attempted, and which you would by them have effected, but were not able. This being the issue of their first attempt upon you at Boston, they took ship for Barbadoes, after they had been at Rhode Island, and from Barbadoes they returned again to New England, and to Boston, after they had been amongst friends in the country. As they passed along through Boston, your constable who was so wicked, that notwithstanding your law of death aforesaid was broken, he said, “It was his delight, and he could rejoice to follow Friends to the execution as much as ever,” laid hold on them, and carried them"to the ship. So they departed for Virginia, and Elizabeth having also suffered for her testimony to the Truth, she returned to Old England, and abode some space of time at her own habitation. After this, Elizabeth Hooton had it upon her to visit New England again, and took her daughter Elizabeth with her; where being arrived, those of you who were present would have fined the master of the ship a hundred pounds for bringing her over contrary to your law; but he telling them that Elizabeth had been with the king, and that she had liberty from him to come thither to buy her a house, your officers were stopped from seizing on his goods. So much regard you had to your own safety, who otherwise had none to him that brought her over; and it is well if you would now mind it, seeing that no other consideration would make you to admit of such a thing in your jurisdiction; but the Lord is above you, and He accomplishes upon you whatsoever seemeth Him good. So into the country she came, and to your town of Boston, to answer the end for which she came thither, which was, “To buy a house for herself to live in, Friends to meet in, and ground to bury the dead in.” And four times was she up at the Court for that purpose; but in open Court you denied it, contrary to the nature of your patent and plantation, which is for any English in them to dwell and inhabit; so you who came thither to build, plant, and inhabit, will suffer none to inhabit, build, or plant but whom you will; and who are unreasonable on all accounts, denying people to live where you come to live; and yet, because you could not live quietly in England, you came to live in that country, in which you deny others of the same nation to buy, build, inhabit, or live. Whereupon she told you, “That if you denied her a house, the king having promised her liberty in any of his plantations beyond the seas, then she might go to England and lay it before the king, if God so pleased.” Which had no influence upon you, who do as you list, whose will is your law, who are inhuman, brutish, unmerciful, without natural affection; who, rather than truth shall have a place among you, or those who profess it, you will děny that which ought not to be denied by your patent, and contrary to the laws of England, which admit of any one to buy and purchase. But take heed lest you who have done these things, come to know a day wherein you would be glad to have a hole in Boston or any other place wherein to hide you,” when ye shall not be able to prevail, who thus deny an ancient woman of your own nation, with her daughter, to purchase a place to live amongst you, as is the liberty of the country; who also had liberty from the king to come and purchase in any of his plantations. The like you did to Joseph Nicholson and his wife, mentioned in the former treatise, who also came out of England to live amongst you, who, according to the nature of your unmerciful spirit, you cruelly exercised, as the relation of these things in the said treatise hath them at large, to which I refer the reader, and with much of the same barbarous usage you treated her, as you did them, though her coming over was with license from the king, who is the original of your patent. But you will be met with, and the cup you have filled to others will be filled to you, and you shall know that God is the Lord, and that it is Him in His people you have so opposed and persecuted, in your imprisonments, whippings, cutting off ears, chainings, finings, selling for bondmen and bond women, denying habitation and sojourning, banishings and puttings to death, in the day wherein He shall render unto you according to your deeds. So there I leave you, and come to show what house you allowed, or what place of habitation you afforded her, or what entertainment she received from you in your jurisdiction, who came three thousand miles from her native country, through the straits and inconveniences of the seas, with her daughter, by license from the king, to purchase and live among you. As she went eastward toward Piscataqua River, she was imprisoned at Hampton for testifying against Seaborn Cotton, the priest thereof aforesaid, who sent his man and took a pied heifer from Eliakim Wardel, who owed him nothing; and his church members took from John Hussey and the said Eliakim almost all they had for fines, for absenting from the worship of such a one. From one of them they took all the fat kine he had, and a sat calf, with which they feasted themselves, besides twelve bushels of corn, and other provisions, which were for himself and his children, and threatened to take away his children as bondslaves, for ten pounds more which they demanded. Then at Dover, for asking Priest Rayner aforesaid a question, she was put in the stocks, and kept in prison four days in the cold weather, being an ancient woman, which might have cost her her life, but the Lord preserved her. Richard Walden aforesaid, whose wife, it is said, begged the office of deputy-magistrate for him, that he might do mischief to Friends, being he who executed this cruelty through the instigation of the priest, as before he had done on others, of whom I have made mention. More cold storms she endured, and persecution in the service of the Truth in those parts, than she was able to express, being made a strength to Friends, and leaving the others without excuse. After this at Cambridge, as she returned, she crying “repentance,” through some part of that town where no Friends had been before as she heard of, she was there laid hold of by a bloodthirsty crew, and early in the morning had before Thomas Danforth and Daniel Goggins, two wicked and bloody magistrates of yours, of whom and their wickedness I have elsewhere spoken, who committed her, and whose jailer thrust her into a noisome, stinking dungeon, where there was nothing to lie down or sit on, and kept her there two days and two nights, without helping her to bread or water; and because one Benanuel Bower, a tender Friend, brought her a little milk in this her great distress, wherein she was like to have perished, they cast him into prison, for entertaining a stranger, and fined him five pounds. After two days and this cruel usage, she lying two days and two nights in this dismal cell, they had her to the Court, and demanded of her, “Who had received her?” She answered him that spake to her, “If I had come to thy house, I should have seen if thou would have received me, for I was much wearied with my travel, and they ought to entertain strangers.” He said, “He would not.” Then she said, “Sell me a house, or let me have one to rent, that I may entertain strangers;” and laid the king's promise before them concerning the liberty they should enjoy beyond the seas, but they regarded it not; but for her entertainment, and in recompense of their cruel usage to her, the noisome dungeon and imprisoning, and fining him that gave her a little milk, when neither bread nor water she had from you in two days, as aforesaid, they ordered her to be sent out of their coasts toward Rhode Island, and to be whipped at three towns, ten stripes each, by the way. So at Cambridge she was tied to the whipping-post, and lashed with ten cruel stripes with a three-stringed whip, with three knots at an end, and at Watertown she was laid on with ten stripes more of rods of willows. And to make up all, at Dedham, on a cold frosty morning, they laid on her aged limbs ten lashes more with exceeding cruelty, at a cart's tail; and her skin and flesh being thus torn and beaten, with the aforesaid extremities, they put her on horseback, and carried her a weary journey many miles into the wilderness, and toward night left her there, where many wolves, bears, and wild beasts, which used sometimes to set upon living persons, and many deep waters to pass through, there to purchase a house and ground, which might hold her tabernacle, or lodge her therein; for themselves had said, “They thought they should see her no more.” But the Lord,
* This was fulfilled in the time of the wars with the Indians, wherein they were glad to have a hole in Boston, or any other place to hide them, when they could not prevail; but such of them as escaped were driven out of most other places by the Indians, and their houses and towns burned. So that any hole would do to hide their heads in, in that day when the Lord filled to them the cup they filled to others, and rendered to them according to their deeds, as in the following words, who as you would not let lolizubeth IIooton, &c., live among you, so the Indians would not let you live among them, but drove you out as you had her and others. Sec Increase and Cotton Mather's Historv of the Wars, and Hubbard's Present State of New England.