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praise. We that serve you, beg of you not to own us, but God alone. We pray you own His people more, for they are chariots and horsemen of Israel. Disown yourselves, but own your authority, and improve it to curb the proud and the insolent, such as would disturb the tranquillity of England, though under what specious pretences soever. Relieve the oppressed; hear the groans of poor prisoners in England. Be pleased to reform the abuses of all professions; and if there be any one that makes many poor to make a few rich, that suits not a commonwealth. If He who strengthens your servants to fight, please to give you hearts to set upon these things, in order to His glory, and the glory of your commonwealth; then, besides the benefit England shall feel thereby, you shall shine forth to other nations, who shall emulate the glory of such a pattern, and, through the power of God, turn in to the like!
“ These are our desires. And that you may have liberty and opportunity to do these things, and not to be hindered, we have been, and shall be (by God's assistance willing to venture our lives; and will not desire you should be precipitated by importunities from your care of safety and preservation; but that the doing of these good things may have their place amongst those which concern wellbeing, and so be wrought in their time and order.
“Since we came into Scotland, it hath been our desire and longing to have avoided blood in this business, by reason that God hath a people here fearing His name, though deceived. And to that end have we offered much love unto such, in the bowels of Christ; and concerning the truth of our hearts therein, have we appealed unto the Lord. The ministers of Scotland have hindered the passage of these things to the hearts of those to whom we intended them. And now we hear, that not only the deceived people, but some of the ministers have also fallen in this battle. This is the great hand of the Lord, and worthy of the consideration of all those who take into their hands the instruments of a foolish shepherd to wit, meddling with worldly politics, and mixtures of earthly powers, to set up that which they call the Kingdom of Christ, which is neither it, nor if it were it; would such means be found effectual to that end ; and neglect or trust not to the word of God—the sword of the Spirit which is alone powerful and able for the setting up of that kingdom ; and when trusted to will be found effectually able to that end, and will also do it."
ORCESTER was the scene of the last struggle of the
royalists with the republican party. There, on the 3rd of September-memorable day in the life of Oliver
Cromwell— was fought a decisive battle : a sharp fierce struggle on the part of the king's men—a slow eure fight on the part of the Commons. Defeated and dispirited in Scotland, the king and the Scottish royalists, picking up, as it were, such stray wayfaring royalists as could be found on their road-forced their way into England. As to King Charles he was right weary of the covenanters and the restraints which were put on him. Long prayers-long sermons-long graces over short commons—were scarcely in accordance with the genius of the merry monarch. He was glad to run the risk of utter failure rather than remain as he was, so that when the word was given to march over the border, he was one of the first who hailed it with delight. And the army, to the number of fourteen thousand men, quitted their camp, and proceeded by long marches, towards the south. Cromwell, whose mind was more vigorous than comprehensive, was confounded at the motions of the enemy. Wholly intent on an offensive war, he had
reduced himself to the necessity of supporting one of the defensive kind, and saw the king, with a numerous army, advancing into England, where his presence, from the general hatred which prevailed against the Parliament, was capable of producing some grand revolution.
But if this conduct was erroneous in Cromwell, he quickly repaired it by his vigour and activity. He despatched letters to the Parliament, exhorting them not to be alarmed at the approach of the Scots: he issued orders in all quarters for collecting forces to oppose the king: he despatched Lambert, with a body of cavalry, to hang upon the rear of the royal army, and annoy them in their march : and he himself, after leaving Monk with seven thousand men, to finish the reduction of Scotland, pursued the king with all possible expedition.
tion. Whatever hopes of assistance the king had entertained from an invasion of England, he soon found that the event did not answer his expectation. The Scots, discouraged at the prospect of so dangerous an enterprise, began to desert in great numbers. The English Presbyterians, utterly ignorant of the king's approach, were totally unprepared to join him. The royalists lay under the same disadvantage; and were further deterred from joining the Scottish army, by the rigid orders which the committee of ministers had issued, not to admit any, even in this desperate extremity, who would not consent to subscribe the covenant.
Charles advanced rapidly into England. He had crossed the Mersey before Lambert and Harrison had formed a junction near Warrington and attempted to draw him into a battle near Knutsford Heath. But Charles eluded the temptation, and passed on to Worcester, where he was received with considerable show of loyal respect by the Mayor and Corporation. But the hopes of the king were blighted by the narrow bigotry of the Presbyterian ministers. They would still allow of no one taking up arms for the king but those who denounced “ Popery and Prelacy,” and were ready to subscribe the covenant.
When Charles ascertained late in August the number of his troops, he found that his whole force amounted to twelve thousand; and he learned about the same time that Cromwell was rapidly approaching with an army of thirty thousand.
From the tower of the cathedral Charles saw the armies drawing nearthe “boa” coiling its fold around the “lion.” It was the third of September, the anniversary of the battle of Dunbar. Lambert had crossed the Severn at Upton with ten thousand men. Cromwell a few
hours later also crossed the Severn, and Fleetwood, with another division of the army, the Temo. While Fleetwood was effecting the passage, Charles summoned his troops and sallied out to attack him in the meadows, and there a fiercely sustained battle was fought. Cromwell came up to the assistance of Fleetwood, and pressed hard on the little band of royalists; thousands covered the ground-dying and dead, -- but the remainder fought with exemplary bravery, Charles himself displaying
Inch by inch the royalists were driven back. The charge of the Ironsides was irresistible. Retreat was inevitable; in vain the young king endeavoured to rally them-slowly but surely they fell back on Worcester, closely pressed by the Parliamentarians, until at length the battle was fought out in Worcester streets, and the beaten, baffled royalists threw down their arms and surrendered.
The dead and the wounded strewed the ground; the king was a fugitive, several of his best friends were prisoners, his army completely beaten—the overthrow of the royal cause was final.
At ten o'clock on that September night Cromwell wrote to the Parliament:
“Sir,—Being so weary, and scarce able to write, yet I thought it my duty to let you know thus much. That upon this day, being the 3rd of September (remarkable for a mercy vouchsafed to your forces on this day twelvemonths in Scotland), we built a bridge of boats over Severn, between it and Teme, about half a mile from Worcester; and another over Teme, within pistol shot of our other bridge. Lieutenant-General Fleetwood and Major-General Dean marched from Upton on the south-west side of Severn up to Powick, a town which was a pass the enemy kept. We, from our side of Severn, passed over some horse and foot, and were in conjunction with the lieutenant-general's forces. We beat the enemy from hedge to hedge, till we beat him into Worcester. "The enemy then drew
all his forces on the other side the town, all but what he had lost, and made a very considerable fight with us for three hours' space; but in the end we beat him totally, and pursued him to his royal fort, which we took, and indeed have beaten his whole army. When we took this fort, we turned his own guns upon him. The enemy hath had great loss, and certainly is scattered, and run several ways. are in pursuit of him, and have laid forces in several places that we hope will gather him up.
“Indeed this hath been a very glorious mercy, and as stiff a contest for
four or five hours as ever I have seen. Both
old forces and those new-raised have behaved themselves with very great courage, and he that made them come out made them willing to fight for you. The Lord God Almighty frame our hearts to real thankfulness for this, which is alone his doing. I hope I shall within a day or two give you a more perfect account.”
Battle of Worcester.
His heart was too full to give expression to its deeper emotions in the first, and that a single letter. On the following day my lord-general takes his pen in hand again to address the Speaker, and record this "crowning mercy" in his military life :
“Sir,-I am not yet able to give you an exact account of the great