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is not this very haughty and unfitting language for them that are under the avenging hand of God for it, and who pretend they have been humbled as they have been 2 And the fierce (despising them that are good) raging and revengeful spirit and madness, was their own, as he implies, Book II., chap. i., page 1, that the rulers of New England were mad by oppression; and that they were wise men who were not betrayed into that madness. And I say so too; and what matter then what he says to the contrary? A liar had need of a good memory, he may remember; and as to Croese's History, that he calls fallacious, and says, “it is not in these matters to be credited ;” I say, more than his, though Gerrard Croese has, in divers parts of his History, showed himself very little a friend to us or our principle, yet in this part he hath done us justice, which may condemn Cotton Mather's envy and partiality, being truer than his in these matters, though perhaps not in everything else. Cotton Mather, Ibid.—“A great clamour hath been raised against New England, for the persecution of the Quakers, and if any man will appear in the vindication of it, let him do as he please, for my part I will not.” And so, Book III., chap. ii., page 38, that “he will not, he cannot make himself a vindicator of all the severities,” &c., yet hath not only vindicated, by endeavouring to extenuate it and excuse it, as above, and commending their persecutors, calling them good men, and writing the lives of many of them, as Endicott, the governor that condemned them, R. Bellingham and J. Leverat, governors after him, and Bradstreet that came over to excuse it to the king, William Bradford and Thomas Prince, governors of Plymouth Patent, Priest Norton, that encouraged them to it, when they hesitated a little upon it, and Priest Wilson, that taunted and reviled them so, and said, “He would carry fire in one hand, and fagots in the other, to burn all the Quakers in the world,” whom he commends so much, and in particular, that “he would never suffer his picture to be drawn,” perhaps lest he should resemble bloody Bonner as much in his features as in his mind, which, however, is pretty well drawn in the former book, and somewhat touched here, that, like Hercules, by his foot any man may judge of the proportion of his body; Jo. Davenport, who, to prevent a Friend from speaking, had a key tied across his mouth; the Higginsons, one of which, Francis, was the old opposer and persecutor of J. N. and F. H. and other Friends in Westmoreland, in 1652, and his brother John, now living in New England, who called the light “a stinking vapour from hell;” Thomas Thatcher, that great oppressor of the Truth and people of God, as he renders him; C. Chauncey (all priests), that compared Friends to wolves, though young ones that had done no harm, yet of the nature of such as kill sheep, and therefore to be killed for fear what they would do, though themselves were the wolves that killed the sheep; and divers others of their persecutors, both priests and rulers. The names of many of whom, as he says of Sir William Phipps' adversaries,” “will either be burned in eternal oblivion, or be remembered, but, like that of Judas in the Gospel, or Pilate in the Creed, with eternal infamy;” whom yet he applauds and praises even to nauseating, and vilifies and reviles the sufferers at the highest rate he can, except he would spit nothing but fire and brimstone, even without a metaphor, as he says of the evil spirits in his Book of Witches; but let him know that “he that justifieth the wicked, and he that condemneth the just, even they both are an abomination to the Lord,” as Solomon saith. So that he hath made himself like them, and involved himself in their guilt, whatever, he pretends; and not only so, but the said Cotton Mather, and some others, not long ago put out a book, called The Principles of the Protestant Religion, &c., wherein they justify the hanging of the said people, though he now pretends he will not nor cannot justify it, saying, “They were not abused, but dealt justly with, and that the crime for which they suffered was, coming purposely to undermine the Civil Government,”f &c., much like as the bloody Papists accused some of the martyrs, when they were clear of any such thing, and which Daniel Gould of Rhode Island, a sufferer with them, hath sufficiently confuted and * Book II., chap. i., page 72. f A very lie.
cleared them of, in his late book, printed in Pennsylvania, which being scarce here, I shall recite some passages of, as follows:— “It has been thought that there had been some remorse, sor“row, or repentance, in the people of New England,” for what “they had done, in hanging the people called Quakers, for some “of this after-generation does not care to hear of it, neither “would they be blamed for what their fathers or predecessors “ have done. Howbeit, we find a little book, of late date, by “four priests of Boston in New England, namely, James Allen, “Joshua Moody, Samuel Willard, and Cotton Mather, which “seem still to justify what they have done, in hanging the said “ people, for they say, ‘They were not abused, but dealt justly “with.' And also say, ‘The crime which occasioned their suffer“ing was, they came purposely to undermine the Civil Govern“ment, and to persuade the people to renounce it,'—pages 63 “and 64. . . . “Now, some people of the country, and priests also, upon dis“course, have made as if they were sorry and troubled for what “they had done, in hanging the said people; but these four priests “seem bloody still, in saying, ‘They were not abused, but dealt “justly with,’ &c., covering themselves under this falsehood, and “for a refuge make this lie, ‘That they came purposely to under“mine the Civil Government, and to persuade the people to re“nounce it.’ This is a high charge, sounded unto the world, and “what is it, but to make the world believe that we are a seditious “people, not worthy to live, and to stir up nations and people “against us, to destroy us from the earth? The charge is high and “ positive; but where is the proof: let them bring forth their “witnesses; yea, let them bring forth the people that will say, “the Quakers that were put to death at Boston ever persuaded “ them to deny or renounce the Civil Government; I say again, “bring forth the people that will say the Quakers that were put “to death at Boston ‘persuaded them to renounce the Civil “Government;’ or that “they came purposely to undermine it.’
* D. Gould's Brief Narration of the Sufferings of the People called Quakers, put to death at Boston, in New England, pages 1-4, &c.
“Indeed there were that suborned men to witness against “Stephen, which said, ‘We have heard him speak blasphemous “words against Moses, and against God, and cease not to speak “blasphemous words against this holy place and the law, for we “have heard him say, this Jesus of Nazareth shall destroy this “place, and shall change the customs which Moses delivered to “us.”—Acts vi. 11–13. These were of the synagogue of the “Libertines, who took great liberty, in their malice and envy, to “sound out lies, to make Stephen, that blessed and good man, to “look as criminal as ever they could, as if he were purposed to “destroy the place, and change the customs, &c., that thereby “they might seem the more justified in the minds of people in “what they did, as if he were not abused, but dealt justly with, in “killing of him. And this was for his faith and testimony's sake, “in testifying to the Truth, that they thus shamefully and wick“edly turned things against him. So now, it must not be said “the Quakers were put to death upon a religious account, for tes“tifying to the Truth; that will look hard, and of an ill report in “the world, that they who came to New England upon the ac“count of religion should now persecute others for the same. “No, no: let it be noised abroad and said, “They came purposely “to undermine the civil government, and persuade the people to “renounce it.”
“And this, it may be, will take with the people, that “they “were not abused, but dealt justly with;' and as it is easy to see “and know who were the chief in stirring up the people and “rulers to this great evil, in killing the Quakers, so also you may “see who are the chief in furnishing the country and world with “a lie for their excuse; that after they had hanged the Quakers, “and many of the country were sorry for it, yet these four priests “stand up to justify the act, in saying, “They were not abused, “but dealt justly with.' O New England 1 may it not be said of “thee, as was said in days of old, “O my people, they which lead “thee cause thee to err, and destroy the way of thy paths."— Isa. iii. 12.”
Page 10. After relating some of their sufferings, as before recited in the Postscript, rehearsing their former charge, “which,” say they, “is everywhere accounted sedition,” page 64. “This is still to possess the country with falsehoods, and to “harden the hearts of people, that they were not abused, &c.; “and to cloak the murder and cruelty of the murdering, and to “make as fair weather for them as they can, and to render the in“nocent sufferers as odious as they can, they say, ‘The rulers used “their utmost lenity toward them, and all fair persuasions to have “them depart; * yea, they banished them, sent them away, but “they wilfully returned; yea, resolutely and daringly affronted “them,' page 64, a notorious falsehood. Were I not a witness “of the manner of their coming into the town of Boston, I should “have been silent at these things; but being a witness of their “innocent sufferings, I cannot hold my peace; and where these “four priests were, in those days of their return and suffering, I “know not; but this I know, they were not of that spirit which “they rendered them to be; neither did they in the least, at their “return, behave themselves daringly, as they ignorantly, if not “maliciously render it, for the fear of the Lord was upon them; “ and there are witnesses yet living that can testify of their civil, “lamb-like, and peaceable return, being under the command of “God, and in His peace, fear, and humbleness of mind. “And as to the lenity and fair persuasions of the rulers, it may “very well stand with the persecuting priests and rulers of old, “whose persuasions were threats and commands not to speak at “all or teach in the name of Jesus; but if they did obey God “rather than man, prisons and stripes were their portion. Peter “and John in the cause of God were very bold, knowing they “had the command of God for what they did ; and when by their “persecutors they were commanded the contrary, they answered, “‘Whether it be right in the sight of God,t to hearken to you “more than unto God, judge ye.” So now these had a command