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and even tortured the English cattle, so that their hatred had risen to literal madness. They murdered Lord Caulfield and a number of the prisoners taken at Charlemont. Ladies were literally torn to pieces. An immense number of Protestants were collected at Portadown, and thrown over the bridge into the river."
Much pains have been taken by Catholic writers to contradict these accounts, and to represent the atrocities as of no extraordinary extent. "They remind us," says Mr. Howitt, "that no account of these barbarous slaughters were transmitted in the reports to the English parliament, which would have been only too glad to spread, and even exaggerate, the bloody deeds of the Catholics. They reduce the number of people slain
during the whole insurrection to about ten thousand, instead of the exaggerated statements of Milton in his 'Iconoclastes,' that there were one hundred and fifty-four thousand in Ulster alone, or of Sir John Temple, that three hundred thousand were slain or expelled altogether. But nothing less than a most frightful massacre could have left the awful impression which still lives in tradition, and the calculations of modern historians do not make the number massacred less than from fifteen to
twenty thousand. The Earl of Castlehaven, a Catholic, says that all the water in the sea could not wash from the Irish the taint of that rebellion. Whilst remembering the vengeance, however, we must never forget the long and maddening incentives to it. Great blame was attached to the
deputy-governors, Borlace and Parsons, who, shut up in security in Dublin, took no measures for suppressing the insurgents. They were charged with purposely allowing the rebellion to spread, in order that there might be more confiscations, in which they would find their own benefit; but it must be remembered that they had few soldiers on whom they could rely, for they were nearly all Catholics; nor did the insurgents escape without severe chastisement in many places, for wherever there was a trusty garrison, the soldiers easily repelled the disorderly mob of plunderers; and Sir Phelim O'Neill suffered during the month of November severe losses."
The appearance of Dublin, a few days after the outbreak, is thus described by an eye-witness-Sir John Temple: "That which made the conditions of the citizens appear much more formidable unto them was the daily repair of multitudes of English that came up in troops, stripped and miserably despoiled, out of the North. Many persons of good rank and quality, covered over with only old rags, and some without any other covering than a little twisted straw to hide their nakedness. Some reverend ministers and others who had escaped with their lives, sorely wounded. Wives came bitterly lamenting the murders of their husbands, mothers of their children barbarously destroyed before their faces; poor infants ready to perish and pour out their souls in their mothers' bosoms; some over-wearied with long travel, and so surbated as they came creeping on their knees; others frozen up with the cold, ready to give up the ghost in the streets; others overwhelmed with grief, distracted with their losses, lost all their senses. Thus was the town, within the compass of a few days after the breaking out of this rebellion, filled with these most lamentable spectacles of sorrow, which in great numbers wandered up and down in all parts of the city, desolate, forsaken, having no place to lay their heads on, no clothing to cover their nakedness, no food to fill their hungry bellies. And to add to their miseries, they found all manner of relief very disproportionable to their wants, so as those sad creatures appeared like living ghosts in every street. Many empty houses in the city were, by special direction, taken up for them-barns, stables, and out-houses filled with them; yet many lay in the open streets, and others under stalls, and there most miserably perished. The churches were the common receptacles of the meaner sort of them, who stood there in the most doleful posture, as objects of charity, in so great multitudes as there was scarce any passage into them. But those of better quality, who
could not frame themselves to be common beggars, crept into private places; and some of them that had not private friends to relieve them even wasted silently away, and so died without noise. And so bitter was the remembrance of their former condition, and so insupportable the burden of their present calamity to many of them, as they even refused to be comforted. I have known of some that lay almost naked, and having clothes sent, laid them by, refusing to put them on; others that would not stir to fetch themselves food, though they knew where it stood ready for them; but they continued to lie nastily in their filthy rags and their dirt, not taking care to have anything clean, handsome, or comfortable about them; and so even worn out with the misery of their journey and cruel usage, having their spirits spent, their bodies wasted, and their senses failing, lay here pitifully languishing; and soon after they had recovered this town very many of them died, leaving their bodies as monuments of the most inhuman cruelties used towards them. The greatest part of the women and children thus barbarously expelled out of their habitations perished in the city of Dublin; and so great numbers of them were brought to their graves as all the churchyards within the whole town were of too narrow a compass to contain them. So as the lordsjustices took order to have two large pieces of new ground, one on each side of the river, taken in upon the out-greens, and set apart for burying-places."
Such atrocities, it has been remarked, must have greatly excited the spirit of superstition in that ignorant age. "Many of the rebel leaders were reported by the Protestants to have been struck with madness and horrible diseases. Apparitions were said to be seen hovering in the air, and were crying for vengeance. The bridge of Portadown, especially, was haunted by multitudes of ghosts, who walked upon the water, sometimes singing psalms, sometimes brandishing swords, and sometimes screeching in an awful manner. Elizabeth, wife of Captain Poire, of Armagh, went to Portadown to be satisfied with her own eyes and ears of the truth of these reports. It was twilight, and there she saw a woman waist-high in the water, naked, with elevated and closed hands, her hair hanging down, very white; her eyes seemed to twinkle, and her skin was as white as snow; which spirit seemed to stand upright in the water often repeating the word 'Revenge! Revenge! Revenge!' whereat this deponent, being put into a strong amazement and affright, walked from the place.”
HE Story of the King and the Commons forms a memorable epoch in English history. Heretofore the swords of the nobles had on more than one occasion been unsheathed, and monarchs had been taught prudence if not wisdom; but resistance to the royal will had ever been on the side of the aristocracy, the people stood apart as though mere spectators at a stage play. "These be kings' matters," said they, and held aloof accordingly. But a great change took place when Charles challenged the Parliament, when his course of action, according to the famous Sir John Eliot, was reduced into a formula, namely, to make the men most obnoxious most secure, and those that to the public were most hateful to be the most honoured and esteemed-then was it that the people spoke and the battle was fought out. Queen Elizabeth-not by any means a mild spoken lady nor one easily turned from her own purpose-had occasionally disagreed with her Parliament, but she had the wisdom to make prompt redress. "This," says
Mr. Forster, "is what her example should have taught a court which unhappily was incapable of learning anything. She understood, if ever ruler did, the art in which the highest government consists of so conforming to the veracities and necessities around it, as to make itself really the expression of the people governed in their changing condition, in their new and impatient wants, in their increasing intelligence. But Charles the First had no one to tell him this, nor probably would have listened if there had been. The people around him could only see that he was not as brave as the great queen, and lament that he should rather have taken example by his father. But it would have been better for him if he had done even this. He suffered for want of his father's cowardice quite as much as for want of Elizabeth's courage. His was one of those natures, not uncommon, which, having no self-reliance, have yet a most intense self-reference, and make up for yielding in some point by obstinacy in some other; and it was his misery always to resist as he yielded too late. After giving up everything that had sustained the prerogative, while it had yet any work in the world to do, he believed in it to the last as the only thing that could help him; and he was not the less ready to seize Pym and Hampden in 1641 because of his defeat and discomfiture in the attempt to seize Eliot in 1626."
This Sir John Eliot was in very truth the foremost man in the great fight between the King and the Commons. He had passed off the field long before the final stroke was given, but it was he who had emboldened others to try this issue with the monarch, and on his head had fallen the wrath of majesty.
Buckingham, "dog Steenie," as we have seen, was the chosen favourite of King James, and his appointed and applauded companion to "baby Charles." Of his rapacity, insolence, and violence, we have seen something in a former story; and the eyes of honest John Eliot were upon him. In 1623 this good man made his great speech in Parliament, battling stoutly for the rights of the people and a check on the royal prerogative. Nothing at the time was gained by people or parliament, and royalty carried things with a high hand. When Charles came to the crown and found his treasury exhausted and his credit doubtful, his favourite Buckingham was still permitted to follow his own devices and to enrich himself with spoil. There was the fitting out of a fleet to ravage on the coasts of Spain and win plunder after a Corsair fashion. Of this expedition Mr. Forster says:-" In plain words, it was an attempt to