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The Two Republics, or Rome and the United States of America - Contents
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    After Scotland, it was in Puritan New England that the Calvinistic system of government most nearly reached its ideal.TTR 592.1

    The rise of the Puritans was on this wise: To escape the persecutions by Mary, in her attempt to restore Catholicism as the religion of England, many members of the Church of England fled to Germany. The worship of these while in exile was conducted by some with the rites of the Church of England as established under Edward VI, while others adopted the Swiss or Calvinistic form of worship. This caused a division, and much contention between them. “The chief scene of these disturbances was Frankfort.” John Knox took the leadership of those who were inclined to Calvinism, while Cox, who afterward became bishop of Ely, was the chief of those who defended the forms of the Church of England. Those who maintained the English form of worship were called Conformists, and those who advocated Calvinistic forms, were called Non-Conformists. The contentions finally grew so bitter that the Conformists drove the Non-Conformists out of the city. 27[Page 592] “History of Civilization,” Vol. ii, chap. v, last par. To this “famous chapter” the reader is confidently referred as the best and most fruitful result of that “minute reading” which is above said to be requisite to enable a person to judge concerning the system.TTR 592.2

    At the accession of Elizabeth, November, 1558, the exiles returned to England carrying their differences with them. There the Non-Conformists acquired the nick-name of “Puritans.” “A Puritan, therefore, was a man of severe morals, a Calvinist in doctrine, and a Non-Conformist to the ceremonies and discipline of the Church [of England], though they did not totally separate from it.”—Neal. Yet more than this: they were not only not separate from the Church of England, but it was not the purpose of the Puritans to separate from either the church, or the government, of England. It was their set purpose to remain in, and a part of, both, to “reform” both, and create and establish instead a Puritan Church of England, and a Puritan government of England.TTR 592.3

    The controversy, as already stated, turned upon the forms of worship—whether the clergy should wear vestments, whether the church should be governed by bishops, about cathedral churches, and the archdeacons, deans, canons, and other officials of the same; about festivals and holy-days; the sign of the cross, god-fathers, god-mothers, etc. The Conformists held firmly to the form of worship as established under Edward VI; 28[Page 593] “History of the Puritans,” preface, par. 6. the Puritans insisted on going the full length in renouncing all the remaining forms and ceremonies. The queen was not in favor of adopting even the system established under Edward, but inclined yet more toward the papal system. Under the circumstances, she rather connived at the efforts of the Puritan party until she had made herself secure on the throne. In addition to this, many seeing the queen herself neglecting the forms enjoined by statute, did the same thing. The result was that the Puritan principles so grew in favor that in the convocation of 1562, when a motion was made to abolish most of the usages in dispute, it was lost by only a single vote, the vote standing fifty-eight for the motion and fifty-nine against it. 29[Page 593] Hallam’s “Constitutional History,” chap. iv, par. 5.TTR 593.1

    As Elizabeth saw that the Puritan party was rapidly growing, she thought to check it by enforcing uniformity according to the established usage. In this she was zealously supported, if not rather led, by the archbishop of Canterbury. This attempt at coercion—1567—caused the Puritans to add to their objections to caps, surplices, tippets, etc., a strong dislike for the whole system of episcopacy, and a stronger determination to substitute for it the Presbyterian form of ecclesiastical polity. And as “it is manifest that the obstinacy of bold and sincere men is not to be quelled by any punishments that do not exterminate them, and that they were not likely to entertain a less conceit of their own reason when they found no arguments so much relied on to refute it as that of force” (Hallam 30[Page 594] Id., par. 3 from the end.), the inevitable consequence was that the efforts to enforce uniformity only caused non-conformity to grow more determined and more prevalent.TTR 593.2

    The Puritans had now grown into a powerful party, and, owing to the difficulties of her position, Elizabeth, whose interest in any matter of religion—unless that perhaps of the papal—was more political than anything else, might have been even yet brought to assent to some of their demands if the Puritans could have been content with anything like moderation. But they now made such extravagant demands, and asserted such extreme doctrines, that it became at once apparent that they would be content with nothing less than the utter subversion of the State, and the establishment in England of the system by which Calvin had ruled Geneva.TTR 594.1

    About 1570 this movement took definite shape; and among the leaders in the movement, “Thomas Cartwright was the chief. He had studied at Geneva; he returned with a fanatical faith in Calvinism, and in the system of church government which Calvin had devised; and as Margaret professor of divinity at Cambridge, he used to the full the opportunities which his chair gave him of propagating his opinions. No leader of a religious party ever deserved less of after sympathy. Cartwright was unquestionably learned and devout, but his bigotry was that of a mediaeval inquisitor. The relics of the old ritual, the cross in baptism, the surplice, the giving of a ring in marriage, were to him not merely distasteful, as they were to the Puritans at large; they were idolatrous, and the mark of the beast.TTR 594.2

    “His declamation against ceremonies and superstition, however, had little weight with Elizabeth or her primates; what scared them was his most reckless advocacy of a scheme of ecclesiastical government which placed the State beneath the feet of the Church. The absolute rule of bishops, indeed, Cartwright denounced as begotten of the devil, but the absolute rule of presbyters he held to be established by the word of God. For the church modeled after the fashion of Geneva he claimed an authority which surpassed the wildest dreams of the masters of the Vatican. All spiritual authority and jurisdiction, the decreeing of doctrine, the ordering of ceremonies, lay wholly in the hands of the ministers of the church. To them belonged the supervision of public morals. In an ordered arrangement of classes and synods, these presbyters were to govern their flocks, to regulate their own order, to decide in matters of faith, to administer ‘discipline’. Their weapon was excommunication, and they were responsible for its use to none but Christ.”—Green. 31[Page 595] “Larger History of England,” book vi, chap. v, par. 31.TTR 595.1

    The actual relation which the State was to bear toward the Church, the magistrates toward the ecclesiastics, was set forth as follows, in a “Second Admonition to Parliament,”—1572—“the legislator” of the proposed Puritan republic:—TTR 595.2

    “It must be remembered that civil magistrates must govern the church according to the rules of God prescribed in his word, and that as they are nurses, so they be servants unto the church; and as they rule in the church, so they must remember to submit themselves unto the church, to submit their scepters, to throw down their crowns before the church, yea, as the prophet speaketh, to lick the dust off the feet of the church.”—Cartwright. 32[Page 595] Quoted by Hallam, “Constitutional History,” chap. iv par. 13.TTR 595.3

    “The province of the civil ruler in such a system of religion as this, was simply to carry out the decisions of the presbyters, ‘to see their decrees executed, and to punish the condemners of them.’ Nor was this work of the civil power likely to be light work. The spirit of Calvinistic Presbyterianism excluded all toleration of practice or belief. Not only was the rule of ministers to be established as the legal form of church government, but all other forms, Episcopalian or Separatist, were to be ruthlessly put down. For heresy there was the punishment of death. Never had the doctrine of persecution been urged with such a blind and reckless ferocity. ‘I deny,’ wrote Cartwright, ‘that upon repentance there ought to follow any pardon of death.... Heretics ought to be put to death now. If this be bloody and extreme, I am content to be so counted with the Holy Ghost!’TTR 596.1

    “The violence of language such as this was as unlikely as the dogmatism of his theological teaching, to commend Cartwright’s opinions to the mass of Englishmen. Popular as the Presbyterian system became in Scotland, it never took any popular hold on England. It remained to the last a clerical, rather than a national, creed; and even in the moment of its seeming triumph under the commonwealth, it was rejected by every part of England save London and Lancashire. 33[Page 596] It was good cause that it was so rejected; for even before the death of Charles I, the Presbyterian Parliament had dealt “the fiercest blow at religious freedom which it had ever received.” “An Ordinance for the Suppression of Blasphemies and Heresies, ‘which Vane and Cromwell had long held at bay, was passed by triumphant majorities. Any man, ran this terrible statute, denying the doctrine of the Trinity or of the divinity of Christ, or that the books of the Scripture are the ‘word of God,’ or the resurrection of the body, or a future day of judgment, and refusing on trial to abjure his hereby, ‘shall suffer the pain of death.’ Any man dealing (among a long list of other errors) ‘that man by nature hath free will to turn to God,’ that there is a purgatory, that images are lawful that infant baptism is unlawful; any one denying the obligation of observing the Lord’s day, or asserting ‘that the church government by presbytery is anti-Christian or unlawful,’ shall, on refusal to renounce his errors, ‘be commanded to prison,’”—Larger History of England,” book vii, chap. x, par. 11. But the bold challenge which Cartwright’s party delivered to the government in 1572, in an ‘Admonition to the Parliament,’ which denounced the government of bishops as contrary to the word of God, and demanded the establishment in its place of government by presbyters, raised a panic among English statesmen and prelates, which cut off all hopes of a quiet treatment of the merely ceremonial questions which really troubled the consciences of the more advanced Protestants. The natural progress of opinion abruptly ceased, and the moderate thinkers who had pressed for a change in ritual which would have satisfied the zeal of the Reformers, withdrew from union with a party which revived the worst pretensions of the papacy.”—Green. 34[Page 597] Id., book vi, chap. v, par. 31.TTR 596.2

    From this time forward, Elizabeth, zealously supported, if not led, by the archbishop of Canterbury, and his subjects, exerted all her power to crush the Puritans. And though the persecution was cruel, they bore it all with patience; first, because every effort that was made to crush them only multiplied their fame and influence a hundred-fold, and, second, because they lived in strong hope that better days, if not their actual triumph, would come when Elizabeth was gone. And as Elizabeth steadily refused to marry, and thus cut off every possibility of heirship to the throne through her, the hopes of the Puritans strengthened as her age increased; because James of Scotland was next in the line of succession, and was not Presbyterianism established in Scotland? And had not James in 1590, with his Scottish bonnet off and his hands raised to heaven declared:—TTR 597.1

    “I praise God that I was born in the time of the light of the gospel, and in such a place as to be king of such a church, the sincerest [purest] kirk in the world. The church of Geneva keep Pasche and Yule [Easter and Christmas]; what have they for them? They have no institution. As for our neighbor Kirk of England, their services are an evil-said mass in English; they want nothing of the mass but the liftings. I charge you, my good ministers, doctors, elders, nobles, gentlemen, and barons, to stand to your purity, and to exhort the people to do the same; and I, forsooth, as long as I brook my life, shall maintain the same”? 35[Page 598] “Neal’s History of the Puritans,” part ii, chap. i. par. 2.TTR 597.2

    And had he not in 1591, written a letter to Elizabeth requesting her to “show favor to Mr. Cartwright and his brethren, because of their great learning and faithful travels in the gospel”? Was not James therefore a good Presbyterian? And would he not surely put the Puritans in their long-coveted position in England?TTR 598.1

    Elizabeth died March 24, 1603, and was at once succeeded by James. Before he left Scotland for London to be crowned king of England, he gave public thanks to God in the church of Edinburgh, that he was leaving “both kirk and kingdom in that state which he intended not to alter any ways, his subjects living in peace.”—Neal. 36[Page 598] Id.TTR 598.2

    This, however, as well as the speech before quoted, was but a piece of that “kingcraft” upon which James prided himself. He had been brought up under Calvinistic discipline in Scotland, and had enough of it; and as a matter of fact, he was only too glad of the opportunity to break loose from all Presbyterian and Puritan influence; and this opportunity he used to the full when he reached London. He called a conference of the two church parties, at which he openly took his stand for Episcopacy and the Church of England as it was, and renounced all connection with the Puritans, or favor for them. He told the Puritans in the conference, “If this be all your party have to say, I will make them conform, or I will harrie them out of the land, or else worse—hang them, that’s all.” Not long afterward, he declared in his council of State, that “his mother and he from their cradles had been haunted with a Puritan devil, which he feared would not leave him to his grave; and that he would hazard his crown but he would suppress those malicious spirits.”—Bancroft. 37[Page 598] “History of the United States,” chap. “The Pilgrims,” par. 8. Accordingly he issued a proclamation commanding all Puritans to conform or suffer the full extremity of the laws, and the archbishop of Canterbury followed it up “with unrelenting rigor.”TTR 598.3

    Meanwhile, some of the Puritans seeing that the prospect from new Presbytery, was but the same as from old priest, only writ large, drew off from the Puritan party, as well as from the Church of England, and advocated a complete separation from both systems as to church government. They held that each church or assembly of worshipers is entirely independent of all others, and self-governing; that all points of doctrine or discipline are to be submitted to the congregation for discussion and final decision; and that each congregation should elect its own pastor, etc. For this reason they were called Independents or Congregationalists, and were nicknamed Separatists.TTR 599.1

    Upon these the wrath of both Puritans and Conformists was poured with about equal virulence. As early as 1567, one of these Congregations was formed in London; but it was forcibly broken up, thirty-one of its members being imprisoned for nearly a year. Persecution, however, only caused their numbers to grow, and by 1576 they formed a distinct sect under the leadership of Robert Brown, from whom they were again nicknamed Brownists. And still they were subject to the enmity of both old ecclesiastical parties. Their meetings were broken up by mobs, and the result to individuals is described as follows, by one who wrote at the time an account of a “tumult in Fleet street, raised by the disorderly preachment, pratings, and prattlings of a swarm of Separatists:—TTR 599.2

    “At length they catcht one of them alone, but they kickt him so vehemently as if they meant to beat him into a jelly. It is ambiguous whether they have kil’d him or no, but for a certainty they did knock him about as if they meant to pull him to pieces. I confesse it had been no matter if they had beaten the whole tribe in the like manner. 38[Page 599] Fiske’s “Beginnings of New England,” p. 67.TTR 599.3

    In 1592 Bacon wrote concerning them: “As for those which we call Brownists, being, when they were at the most, a very small number of very silly and base people, here and there in corners dispersed, they are now, thanks to God, by the good remedies that have been used, suppressed and worn out; so that there is scarce any news of them.” 39[Page 600] Bancroft’s “History of the United States,” chap. “Prelates and Puritans,” par. 3 from the end. Yet in 1593 there were twenty thousand of them; and in the same year, at the order of Archbishop Whitgift, three of their leading men were hanged, two of whom had already been in prison seven years. The crime of which they were convicted and for which they were executed, was “separation from the Church of England.”TTR 599.4

    The attitude and the words of King James, were simply a proclamation of the continuance of the war which Elizabeth had already waged against the Puritans and Congregationalists, and caused the Separatist principles and numbers more to grow. The chief of the Separatists was now William Brewster, a prominent man of Scrooby. Assisted by John Robinson, he organized a congregation in 1606, which held its meetings in his own drawing-room at Scrooby Manor. They were so persecuted and abused by all classes, as well as by the officers of the law, that in 1608 they fled to Holland, stopping first at Amsterdam, and afterward going to Leyden in 1609. From there a company of these PILGRIMS sailed, and landed at Plymouth, New England, in 1620.TTR 600.1

    The success of this venture suggested to the Puritans a new scheme. Was not here an opportunity to establish a complete and unabridged Puritan government? And was not the way fully opened, and the opportunity easy to be improved? Enough! They would do it. The scheme was talked about, pamphlets were written, a company was formed, a grant of land was obtained, and John Endicott, with a company of sixty, was sent over in 1628. They joined a fishing settlement at the place afterward called Salem on Massachusetts Bay.TTR 600.2

    In 1629 a royal charter was obtained, creating “The Government and Colony of Massachusetts Bay in New England;” and four hundred and six people, led by Francis Higginson, were sent over, and Endicott became governor of the whole colony.TTR 601.1

    A Puritan or Calvinistic government was at once established and put into working order. A church was immediately organized according to the Congregational form, with Higginson and Samuel Skelton as the ministers. All, however, were not inclined to Puritanism. Two persons of the former company at Salem, John and Samuel Browne, took the lead in worshiping according to their own wish, conducting their service after the Episcopal order, using the book of common prayer. Their worship was forbidden. The Brownes replied, “You are Separatists, and you will shortly be Anabaptists.” The Puritans answered, “We separate, not from the Church of England, but from its corruptions. We came away from the common prayer and ceremonies, in our native land, where we suffered much for non-conformity; in this place of liberty we cannot, we will not, use them. Their imposition would be a sinful violation of the worship of God.” 40[Page 601] Bancrfot’s “History of the United States,” chap. “New England’s Plantation,” last par. but one. In return the Brownes were rebuked as Separatists; their defense was pronounced sedition; their worship was declared mutiny; and they were sent back to England as “factious and evil-conditioned men,” Endicott declaring that “New England was no place for such as they.”TTR 601.2

    Higginson died in the winter of 1629-30. In 1630 there came over another company led by John Winthrop and Thomas Dudley, who were the governor and deputy-governor to succeed Endicott. “Their embarkation in 1630 was the signal of a general movement on the part of the English Puritans. Before Christmas of that year seventeen ships had come to New England, bringing more than one thousand passengers.”—Fiske. 41[Page 601] “Beginnings of New England,” pp. 103, 104. Dudley’s views of toleration and liberty of conscience are expressed in the following lines, which he wrote:—“Let men of God in courts and churches watch O’er such as do a toleration hatch, Lest that ill egg bring forth a cockatrice To poison all with heresy and vice.” 42[Page 602] Id., p. 103.TTR 601.3

    And Winthrop’s estimate of the preachers is seen in his declaration that “I honored a faithful minister in my heart, and could have kissed his feet.” 43[Page 602] Adams’s “Emancipation of Massachusetts,” p. 32. It was therefore not at all strange that under the government of Winthrop and Dudley in 1631, the following law should be enacted:—TTR 602.1

    “To the end this body of the commons may be preserved of honest and good men, it is ordered and agreed that, for the time to come, no man shall be admitted to the freedom of this body politic but such as are members of some of the churches within the limits of the same.”TTR 602.2

    “Thus the polity became a theocracy; God himself was to govern his people; and the ‘saints by calling,’... were, by the fundamental law of the colony, constituted the oracle of the divine will.... Other States have confined political rights to the opulent, to free-holders, to the first-born; the Calvinists of Massachusetts, refusing any share of civil power to the clergy, established the reign of the visible church, a commonwealth of the chosen people in covenant with God.”—Bancroft. 44[Page 602] “History of the United States,” cha. “Self-Government in Massachusetts,” par. 25. This was the Calvinistic system precisely. The preachers were not to hold office in itself, but they were to be the rulers of all who did. For, as no man could be a citizen unless he was a member of the church; and as none could become members of the churches or even “propounded to the congregation, except they be first allowed by the elders;” this was to make the preachers supreme. This is exactly the position they occupied. They were consulted in everything, and everything must be subject to their dictation.TTR 602.3

    Other companies of immigrants continued to come, and the colony rapidly grew. In 1634 there were nearly four thousand in the colony.TTR 603.1

    In 1631 Roger Williams landed in Boston, and as the death of Higginson had left a vacancy in the church at Salem, the church called Williams to fill his place; but as Winthrop and his “assistants” objected, Williams went to Plymouth Colony.TTR 603.2

    The leading minister in Massachusetts Colony at this time was John Cotton. He distinctly taught the blessedness of persecution in itself, and in its benefit to the State, in the following words:—TTR 603.3

    “But the good brought to princes and subjects by the due punishment of apostate seducers and idolaters and blasphemers, is manifold.TTR 603.4

    First, it putteth away evil from among the people, and cutteth off a gangrene, which would spread to further ungodliness.... .TTR 603.5

    Secondly, it driveth away wolves from worrying and scattering the sheep of Christ. For false teachers be wolves, ... and the very name of wolves holdeth forth what benefit will redound to the sheep, by either killing them or driving them away.TTR 603.6

    Thirdly, such executions upon such evil doers causeth all the country to heare and feare and doe no more such wickednesse.... Yea, as these punishments are preventions of like wickednesse in some, so are they wholesome medicines, to heale such as are curable of these eviles....TTR 603.7

    Fourthly, the punishments executed upon false prophets and seducing teachers, doe bring downe showers of God’s blessings upon the civill state ....TTR 603.8

    Fifthly, it is an honour to God’s justice that such judgments are executed. 45[Page 603] “The Emancipation of Massachusetts,” pp. 35, 36. ....TTR 603.9

    And Samuel Shepard, a minister of Charlestown, preached an election sermon entitled “Eye Salve,” in which he set forth the following views:—TTR 603.10

    “Men’s lusts are sweet to them, and they would not be disturbed or disquieted in their sin. Hence there be so many such as cry up tolleration boundless and libertinism so as (if it were in their power) to order a total and perpetual confinement of the sword of the civil magistrate unto its scabbard (a motion that is evidently distructive to this people, and to the publick liberty, peace, and prosperity of any instituted churches under heaven).TTR 603.11

    “Let the magistrate’s coercive power in matters of religion, therefore, be still asserted, seeing he is one who is bound to God more than any other man to cherish his true religion; ... and how wofull would the state of things soon be among us, if men might have liberty without controll to profess, or preach, or print, or publish what they list, tending to the seduction of others.” 46[Page 604] Id., pp. 36, 37.TTR 604.1

    In accordance with these principles, every inhabitant of the colony was obliged to attend the services of the Established Church on Sunday under penalty of fine or imprisonment. The fine was not to exceed five shillings, equal to about five dollars of the present day, for every absence.TTR 604.2

    About 1633 Roger Williams was called a second time to the ministry of the Salem church. This time he was allowed to take the place; but it was not long before he was again in trouble with the theocrats. He denounced their laws making church membership a qualification for office, and all their laws enforcing religious observances.TTR 604.3

    He declared that the worst law in the English code was that by which they themselves when in England had been compelled to attend the parish church; and he reproved their inconsistency in counting that persecution in England, and then doing the same things themselves in New England.TTR 604.4

    They maintained, as argued by Cotton, that “persecution is not wrong in itself. It is wicked for falsehood to persecute truth, but it is the sacred duty of truth to persecute falsehood.” And, as stated by Winthrop, that “we have come to New England in order to make a society after our own model; all who agree with us may come and join that society; those who disagree may go elsewhere; there is room enough on the American continent.” 47[Page 604] “Beginnings of New England,” p. 178.TTR 604.5

    Roger Williams told them that to compel men to unite with those of a different faith is an open violation of natural right; and that to drag to public worship the irreligious and the unwilling, is only to require hypocrisy. “Persons may with less sin be forced to marry whom they cannot love, than to worship where they cannot believe.” 48[Page 605] Backus’s “Church History of New England,” pp. 62, 63. Accordingly he insisted that “no one should be bound to worship or to maintain a worship against his own consent.”TTR 604.6

    At this the theocrats inquired with pious amaze, “What, is not the laborer worthy of his hire?” To which Roger replied in words which they could not fail fully to understand, “Yes, from them that hire him.”TTR 605.1

    The view that the magistrates must be chosen exclusively from membership in the churches, he exploded with the argument that with equal propriety they should select a doctor of physic or the pilot of a ship, because of his standing in the church.TTR 605.2

    Against the statements of Cotton and Shepard and the claims of the theocrats altogether, as to the right of the magistrate to forestall corrupting influences upon the minds of the people, and to punish error and heresy, he set the evident and everlasting truth that “magistrates are but the agents of the people or its trustees, on whom no spiritual power in matters of worship can ever be conferred, since conscience belongs to the individual, and is not the property of the body politic; ... the civil magistrate may not intermeddle even to stop a church from apostasy and heresy; this power extends only to the bodies and goods and outward estate of men.” 49[Page 605] Bancroft’s “History of the United States,” chap. “The Providence plantations,” par. 3-6.TTR 605.3

    The theocrats raised the alarm that these principles subverted all good government. To which he replied: “There goes many a ship to sea, with many hundred souls in one ship, whose weal and woe is common, and is a true picture of a commonwealth or a human combination or society. It hath fallen out sometimes that both Papists and Protestants, Jews and Turks, may be embarked in one ship; upon which supposal I affirm that all the liberty of conscience that ever I pleaded for turns upon these two hinges, that none of the Papists, Protestants, Jews, or Turks be forced to come to the ship’s prayers or worship, nor compelled from their particular prayers or worship, if they practice any.” 50[Page 606] Blakely’s “American State Papers,” page 68, note. “The removal of the yoke of soul-oppression, as it will prove an act of mercy and righteousness to the enslaved nations, so it is of binding force to engage the whole and every interest and conscience to preserve the common liberty and peace.” 51[Page 606] Bancroft’s “History of the United States,” chap. “The Providence Plantation,” par. 6.TTR 605.4

    He also denied the right of the compulsory imposition of an oath. The magistrates had decided to require an oath of allegiance to Massachusetts, instead of to the king of England. Williams would not take the oath, and his influence was so great that so many others refused also that the government was compelled to drop the project. This caused them to raise a charge against him as the ally of a civil faction. The church at Salem stood by him, and in the face of the enmity of the theocrats elected him their teacher. This was no sooner done than the preachers met together and declared that any one who should obstinately assert that “the civil magistrate might not intermeddle even to stop a church from apostasy and heresy,” was worthy of banishment. A committee of their order was appointed to go to Salem and deal with Williams and the church “in a church way.”TTR 606.1

    Meantime the people of Salem were punished for choosing him for their teacher, by the withholding of a tract of land to which they had laid claim. Williams was ready to meet the committee at every point in expressing and defining his doctrines, and in refuting all their claims. After the committee had returned, the church by Williams wrote letters to all the churches of which any of the magistrates were members, “that they should admonish the magistrates of their injustice.” By the next general court the whole of Salem was disfranchised until they should apologize for these letters. The town and the church yielded. Roger Williams stood alone. He was able and willing to do it, and at once declared his “own voluntary withdrawing from all these churches which were resolved to continue in persecuting the witnesses of the Lord,” and “hoped the Lord Jesus was sounding forth in him the blast which should in his own holy season cast down the strength and confidence of those inventions of men.” In October, 1635, he was summoned before the chief representatives of the State. He went and “maintained the rocky strength” of his position, and declared himself “ready to be bound and banished, and even to die in New England,” rather than to renounce his convictions.TTR 606.2

    By the earnest persuasions of Cotton, the general court of 1635, by a small majority, sentenced him to exile, and at the same time attempted to justify the sentence by the flimsy plea that it was not a restrainment on freedom of conscience, but because the application of the new doctrine to their institutions seemed “to subvert the fundamental state and government of the country.” In January, 1636, a warrant was sent to him to come to Boston and take ship for England. He refused to go. Officers were sent in a boat to bring him, but he was gone. “Three days before, he had left Salem, in winter snow and inclement weather, of which he remembered the severity even in his late old age. ‘For fourteen weeks he was sorely tost in a bitter season, not knowing what bread or bed did mean.’ Often in the stormy night he had neither fire, nor food, nor company; often he wandered without a guide, and had no house but a hollow tree. But he was not without friends. The respect for the rights of others which had led him to defend the freedom of conscience, had made him the champion of the Indians. He had learned their language during his residence at Plymouth; he had often been the guest of the neighboring sachems; and now, when he came in winter to the cabin of the chief of Pokanoket, he was welcomed by Massassoit; and ‘the barbarous heart of Canonicus, the chief of the Narragansetts, loved him as his son to the last gasp.’ ‘The ravens,’ he relates, ‘fed me in the wilderness.’” 52[Page 608] Id., par. 7-11.TTR 607.1

    The act of 1631 making membership in the church a test of citizenship had involved the theocrats in another dilemma. There was a considerable number of people who were not members of the churches, and because of unfitness could not be admitted. Even more than this, they did not want to be admitted. But as membership in the church was necessary to citizenship, and as they wanted to be, and deemed it their right to be, citizens, they took to organizing churches of their own. But the theocrats were not willing that power should slip through their fingers in any such way as this; they found not only a way to escape from the dilemma, but with that to make their power more absolute. In 1635 the following law was enacted:—TTR 608.1

    “Forasmuch as it hath bene found by sad experience, that much trouble and disturbance hath happened both to the Church & civill State by the officers & members of some churches, wch which have bene gathered.... in an vndue manner, .... it is ... ordered that ... this court doeth not, nor will hereafter approue of any such companies of men as shall henceforth ioyne in any pretended way of church fellowshipp, without they shall first acquainte the magistrates, & the elders of the greatr of the churches in this jurisdicon, with their intencons, and have their approbacon herein. And ffurther, it is ordered, that noe pson, being a member of any churche which shall hereafter be gathered without the approbacon of the magistrates, & the greater pte of the said churches, shall be admitted to the freedom of this comonwealthe.” 53[Page 608] “Emancipation of Massachusetts,” p. 29.TTR 608.2

    In May, 1636, Henry Vane was elected governor. Some time before this Anne Hutchinson, with her family, had come over from Lincolnshire, being followed later by her brother-in-law, John Wheelwright. She was an excellent woman, and made many friends, and at her house held religious meetings for women. The object of these meetings. was to talk over the sermons for mutual edification; but as was natural, they drifted into the discussion of the ministers rather than their sermons. In one of these meetings Mrs. Hutchinson happened to remark that of the ministers “none did preach the covenant of free grace but Master Cotton,” and that they “had not the seal of the Spirit, and so were not able ministers of the New Testament.” This remark soon got into circulation among the preachers, and of course was not at all palatable.TTR 608.3

    As Cotton was named as the one exemplary minister, in October the ministers went in a body to his house to call him to account. Cotton proposed that the other ministers and Mrs. Hutchinson should have a friendly interview at his house, in order to come to an understanding. She, suspecting a trap, was rather wary at first, and declined to commit herself to any definite statement upon the point at issue, but being urged by the “Rev.” Hugh Peters to deal fairly and honestly with them, she allowed herself at last to be persuaded to say that the report was in substance true, and that she did in truth see a wide difference between Cotton’s preaching and theirs; “that they could not preach a covenant of grace so clearly as he, because they had not the seal of the Spirit.”TTR 609.1

    Instead of the preachers’ being reconciled to Mrs. Hutchinson’s view, or to Cotton, their enmity was deepened. The matter spread more and more, and the colony was divided into two parties; and at the head of the Hutchinson party was Vane, the governor.TTR 609.2

    In January 1637, on a fast-day, John Wheelwright preached in Boston to the effect that “it maketh no matter how seemingly holy men be according to the law, if ... they are such as trust to their own righteousness they shall die, saith the Lord. Do ye not after their works; for they say and do not. They make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments; and love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues; and greetings in the market place, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi. But believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and ye shall be saved, for being justified by faith we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. And the way we must take if so be we will not have the Lord Jesus Christ taken from us is this: we must all prepare a spiritual combat, we must put on the whole armor of God, and must have our loins girt up and be ready to fight; ... because of fear, in the night, if we will not fight, the Lord Jesus Christ may come to be surprised.” 54[Page 610] “Emancipation of Massachusetts,” p. 55.TTR 609.3

    This brought matters to a crisis. In March the legislature met, and a court was appointed, composed of Henry Vane, twelve magistrates, twelve preachers, and thirty-three deputies. Wheelwright was arraigned before the court. His sermon was brought forth, and an attempt was made to have him admit that when he spoke in the sermon of those under a covenant of works, he meant his brother ministers in the colony. Of course it was easy for him to throw the matter on them. He demanded that they controvert his doctrine. He said he was ready to prove by the Scriptures that the doctrine was true. As to who was meant in the sermon, he told them that “if he were shown any that walked in such a way as he had described to be a covenant of works, them did he mean.” The rest of the ministers were asked by the court if they “did walk in such a way.” “They all acknowledged that they did,” except Cotton, who declared that “Brother Wheelwright’s doctrine was according to God in the parts controverted, and wholly and altogether.”TTR 610.1

    By hard work the opposition succeeded in having Wheelwright convicted of sedition; but they were not able to secure sentence at once, and had him remanded to the next session. As soon as the decision was known, more than sixty of the leading citizens of Boston signed a petition to the court in behalf of Wheelwright, in which they referred to the persecution as a restriction of the right of free speech, and among other things said:—TTR 610.2

    “Paul was counted a pestilent fellow, or a mover of sedition, and a ringleader of a sect, ... and Christ himselfe, as well as Paul, was charged to bee a teacher of new doctrine.... Now wee beseech you, consider whether that old serpent work not after his old method, even in our dailies.... Thirdly, if you look at the effects of his doctrine upon the hearers, it hath not stirred up sedition in us, not so much as by accident; wee have not drawn the sword, as sometimes Peter did, rashly, neither have wee rescued our innocent brother, as sometimes the Israelites did Jonathan; and yet they did not seditiously. The covenant of free grace held forth by our brother hath taught us rather to become humble suppliants to your worships, and if wee should not prevaile, wee would rather with patience give our cheekes to the smiters.” 55[Page 611] Id., p. 57.TTR 611.1

    It is not necessary to follow particulars farther; the question was made the issue at the next election. Wheelwright’s enemies carried the day, electing Winthrop governor. At the next session held in November, he was summoned to appear, and was ordered to submit, or prepare for sentence. He maintained that as he had preached only the truth of Christ, he was guilty of neither sedition nor contempt. The court replied that they had not censured his doctrine, but had left that as it was; but the censure was upon the application by which “he laid the magistrates and ministers and most of the people in this church under a covenant of works.” He was sentenced to be disfranchised and banished, and he was given fourteen days to leave Massachusetts. Like Roger Williams, he was compelled to go forth alone in the bitterness of the New England winter.TTR 611.2

    Wheelwright was no sooner out of the way than they proceeded to try his friends who had presented the petition, and these men who had not only in the petition disclaimed any thought of sedition, but had said that if their petition was not heard, they “would rather with patience give their cheekes to the smiters,” were held to be public enemies. “Such scruples, however, never hampered the theocracy. Their justice was trammeled neither by judges, by juries, nor by laws.”—Adams. 56[Page 612] Id., p. 65.TTR 611.3

    This accomplished, they next proceeded to execute vengeance on Anne Hutchinson, the chief traitor, and the cause of all their dissension. In November, 1637, “she was brought to trial before that ghastliest den of human iniquity, an ecclesiastical criminal court. The ministers were her accusers, who came burning with hate to testify to the words she had spoken to them at their own request, in the belief that the confidence she reposed was to be held sacred. She had no jury to whose manhood she could appeal, and John Winthrop, to his lasting shame, was to prosecute her from the judgment seat. She was soon to become a mother, and her health was feeble; but she was made to stand till she was exhausted; and yet abandoned and forlorn, before those merciless judges, through two long, weary days of hunger and of cold, the intrepid woman defended her cause with a skill and courage which even now, after two hundred and fifty years, kindles the heart with admiration.TTR 612.1

    “The case for the government was opened by John Winthrop, the presiding justice, the attorney-general, the foreman of the jury, and the chief magistrate of Massachusetts Bay. He upbraided the prisoner with her many evil courses, with having spoken things prejudicial to the honor of the ministers, with holding an assembly in her house, and with divulging the opinions held by those who had been censured by that court.”—Adams. 57[Page 612] Id., pp. 65, 66.. The proceedings then continued after the following order:—TTR 612.2

    Governor Winthrop.—“We have thought good to send for you, ... that if you be in an erroneous way, we may reduce you that so you may become a profitable member here among us; otherwise if you be obstinate, ... that then the court may take such course that you may trouble us no further. Therefore I would entreat you... whether you do not justify Mr. Wheelwright’s sermon and the petition?”TTR 612.3

    Mrs. Hutchinson.—“I am called here to answer before you, but I hear no things laid to my charge.”TTR 613.1

    Gov.—“I have told you some already, and more I can tell you.”TTR 613.2

    Mrs. H.—“Name one, sir.”TTR 613.3

    Gov.—“Have I not named some already?”TTR 613.4

    Mrs. H.—“What have I said or done?”...TTR 613.5

    Gov.—“You have joined with them in faction.”TTR 613.6

    Mrs. H.—“In what faction have I joined them?”TTR 613.7

    Gov.—“In presenting the petition.” ...TTR 613.8

    Mrs. H. “But I had not my hand to the petition.”TTR 613.9

    Gov.—“You have counseled them.”TTR 613.10

    Mrs. H.—Wherein?”TTR 613.11

    Gov.—“Why, in entertaining them.”TTR 613.12

    Mrs. H.—“What breach of law is that, sir?”TTR 613.13

    Gov.—“Why, dishonoring of parents.” ...TTR 613.14

    Mrs. H.—“I may put honor upon them as the children of God, and as they do honor the Lord.”TTR 613.15

    Gov.—“We do not mean to discourse with those of your sex, but only this: you do adhere unto them, and do endeavor to set forward this faction, and so you do dishonor us.”TTR 613.16

    Mrs. H.—“I do acknowledge no such thing, neither do I think that I ever put any dishonor upon you.”TTR 613.17

    Dep. Gov.—“I would go a little higher with Mrs. Hutchinson. Now.... if she in particular hath disparaged all our ministers in the land that they have preached a covenant of works, and only Mr. Cotton a covenant of grace, why this is not to be suffered.”...TTR 613.18

    Mrs. H.—“I pray, sir, prove it, that I said they preached nothing but a covenant of works.” ...TTR 613.19

    Dep. Gov.—“If they do not preach a covenant of grace, clearly, then, they preach a covenant of works.”TTR 613.20

    Mrs. H.—“No, sir; one may preach a covenant of grace more clearly than another, so I said.”TTR 614.1

    Rev. Hugh Peters.—“That which concerns us to speak unto, as yet we are sparing in, unless the court command us to speak, then we shall answer to Mrs. Hutchinson, notwithstanding our brethren are very unwilling to answer. Myself and others had heard that the prisoner said we taught a covenant of works; we sent for her, and though she was ‘very tender’ at first, yet upon being begged to speak plainly, she explained that there ‘was a broad difference’ between our Brother Mr. Cotton and ourselves. I desired to know the difference. She answered ‘that he preaches the covenant of grace and you the covenant of works,’ and that you are not able ministers of the New Testament, and know no more than the apostles did before the resurrection.”TTR 614.2

    Mrs. H.—“If our pastor would show his writings, you should see what I said, and that things are not so as is reported.”TTR 614.3

    Mr. Wilson.—“Sister Hutchinson, for the writings you speak of, I have them not.”...TTR 614.4

    Peters was followed by five other preachers, who first with hypocritical meekness expressed themselves as loth to speak in this assembly concerning that gentlewoman, yet to ease their consciences in the relation wherein they stood to the commonwealth and unto God, they felt constrained to state that the prisoner had said they were not able ministers of the New Testament, and that the whole of what Hugh Peters had testified was true. The-court then adjourned till the next day.TTR 614.5

    When the court opened the next day, Mrs. Hutchinson began her defense by calling as her witnesses Messrs. Leverett, Coggeshall, and Cotton. And the inquisitorial mill again began to grind.TTR 614.6

    Gov. Winthrop.—“Mr. Coggeshall was not present.”TTR 614.7

    Coggeshall.—“Yes, but I was; only I desired to be silent till I should be called.”TTR 614.8

    Gov.—“Will you ... say that she did not say so?”TTR 615.1

    Mr. C.—“Yes, I dare say that she did not say all that which they lay against her.”TTR 615.2

    Mr. Peters.—“How dare you look into the court to say such a word?”TTR 615.3

    Mr. C.—“Mr. Peters takes upon him to forbid me. I shall be silent.” ...TTR 615.4

    Gov.—Well, Mr. Leverett, what were the words? I pray speak.”TTR 615.5

    Mr. Leverett.—To my best remembrance, ... Mr. Peters did with much vehemency and entreaty urge her to tell what difference there was between Mr. Cotton and them, and upon his urging of her she said: ‘The fear of man is a snare, but they that trust upon the Lord shall be safe.’ And ... that they did not preach a covenant of grace so clearly as Mr. Cotton did, and she gave this reason of it, because that as the apostles were for a time without the Spirit, so until they had received the witness of the Spirit they could not preach a covenant of grace so clearly.”TTR 615.6

    Cotton was next called, and took his place as witness.TTR 615.7

    Mr. Cotton.—“I must say that I did not find her saying they were under a covenant of works, nor that she said they did preach a covenant of works.”TTR 615.8

    Gov.—“You say you do not remember; but can you say she did not speak so?”TTR 615.9

    Mr. C.—“I do remember that she looked at them as the apostles before the ascension.” ...TTR 615.10

    Dep. Gov.—They affirm that Mrs. Hutchinson did say they were not able ministers of the New Testament.”TTR 615.11

    Mr. C.—“I do not remember it.” 58[Page 615] “Emancipation of Massachusetts,” pp. 66-70.TTR 615.12

    Mrs. Hutchinson believed also in the abiding presence of the Holy Spirit, and in the promise of Christ that the Spirit will guide the Christian, especially in the understanding of the Scriptures. She therefore taught that “the Holy Ghost dwells in a justified person,” and that it is the duty of Christians to “follow the bidding of the Holy Spirit.” For this she was regarded by the formalistic Puritans as little less than a raving fanatic, and her teachings as tending to anarchy. And as “there was nothing which the orthodox Puritan so steadfastly abhorred as the anarchical pretense of living by the aid of a supernatural light,” she was denounced as “weakening the hands and hearts of the people toward the ministers,” and as being “like Roger Williams, or worse.” 59[Page 616] “Beginnings of New England,” p. 49; and Bancroft’s “History of the United States,” chap. “The Colonization of new Hampshire,” par. 8.TTR 615.13

    Now at her trial, knowing that although the court was worsted in its case as to the main point, and that she had no hope of escape without an attack upon this phase of her belief, she chose rather to introduce the matter herself than to allow the court to force her upon ground of their own choosing. She therefore stated that she knew by the Spirit of God that her teachings were the truth, and closed a short speech as follows:—TTR 616.1

    Mrs. H.—“Now if you condemn me for speaking what in my conscience I know to be truth, I must commit myself unto the Lord.”TTR 616.2

    Mr. Nowell.—“How do you know that that was the Spirit?”TTR 616.3

    Mr. H.—“How did Abraham know that it was God?”TTR 616.4

    Dep. Gov.—“By an immediate voice.”TTR 616.5

    Mrs. H.—“So to me by an immediate revelation.”TTR 616.6

    She next stated to the court her conviction that the Lord had showed to her that she would be delivered out of the hands of the court, and referred to some passages in the book of Daniel. In the condition in which the poor woman was, it is not to be wondered at that under the continued and cruel goading of the court, she should speak the following words:—TTR 616.7

    Mrs. H.—“You have power over my body, but the Lord Jesus hath power over my body and soul; and assure yourselves thus much, you do as much as in you lies to put the Lord Jesus Christ from you, and if you go on in this course you begin, you will bring a curse upon you and your posterity, and the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.”TTR 616.8

    Gov.—“Daniel was delivered by miracle. Do you think to be delivered so too?”TTR 617.1

    Mrs. H.—“I do here speak it before the court. I look that the Lord should deliver me by his providence.” ...TTR 617.2

    Dep. Gov.—“I desire Mr. Cotton to tell us whether you do approve of Mrs. Hutchinson’s revelations as she hath laid them down.”TTR 617.3

    Mr. C.—“I know not whether I understand her; but this I say, If she doth expect a deliverance in a way of providence, then I cannot deny it.”TTR 617.4

    Gov.—... “I see a marvelous providence of God to bring things to this pass.... God by a providence hath answered our desires, and made her to lay open herself and the ground of all these disturbances to be by revelations.” ...TTR 617.5

    Court.—“We all consent with you.”TTR 617.6

    Gov.—“Ey, it is the most desperate enthusiasm in the world.” ...TTR 617.7

    Mr. Endicott.—“I speak in reference to Mr. Cotton.... Whether do you witness for her or against her?”TTR 617.8

    Mr. C.—“This is that I said, sir, and my answer is plain, that if she doth look for deliverance from the hand of God by his providence, and the revelation be ... according to a word [of Scripture], that I cannot deny.”TTR 617.9

    Mr. Endicott.—“You give me satisfaction.”TTR 617.10

    Dep. Gov.—“No, no; he gives me none at all.”TTR 617.11

    Mr. C.—“I pray, sir, give me leave to express myself. In that sense that she speaks I dare not bear witness against it.”TTR 617.12

    Mr. Nowell.—“I think it is a devilish delusion.”TTR 617.13

    Gov.—“Of all the revelations that ever I read of, I never read the like ground laid as is for this. The enthusiasts and Anabaptists had never the like.” ...TTR 617.14

    Mr. Peters.—“I can say the same; ... and I think that is very disputable which our Brother Cotton hath spoken.” ...TTR 618.1

    Gov.—“I am persuaded that the revelation she brings forth is delusion.”TTR 618.2

    All the court (except two or three ministers).—“We all believe it, we all believe it.” ...TTR 618.3

    Coddington.—“I beseech you do not speak so to force things along, for I do not for my own part see any equity in the court in all your proceedings. Here is no law of God that she hath broken, nor any law of the country that she hath broke, and therefore deserves no censure; and if she say that the elders preach as the apostles did, why they preached a covenant of grace, and what wrong is that to them? ... Therefore I pray consider what you do, for here is no law of God or man broken.”TTR 618.4

    Mr. Peters.—“I confess I thought Mr. Cotton would never have took her part.”TTR 618.5

    Gov.—“The court hath already declared themselves satisfied ... concerning the troublesomeness of her spirit and the danger of her course amongst us, which is not to be suffered. Therefore if it be the mind of the court that Mrs. Hutchinson ... shall be banished out of our liberties, and imprisoned till she be sent away, let them hold up their hands.”TTR 618.6

    All but three consented.TTR 618.7

    Gov.—“Those contrary minded hold up yours.”TTR 618.8

    Messrs. Coddington and Colburn only.TTR 618.9

    Gov.—“Mrs. Hutchinson, the sentence of the court you hear is that you are banished from out of our jurisdiction as being a woman not fit for our society, and are to be imprisoned till the court shall send you away.”TTR 618.10

    Mrs. Hutchinson.—“I desire to know wherefore I am banished.”TTR 618.11

    Gov.—“Say no more: the court knows wherefore, and is satisfied.” 60[Page 617] “Emancipation of Massachusetts,” pp. 72-75.TTR 618.12

    Here the proceedings in the court ended. She was committed to Joseph Welde of Roxbury, whose brother, one of the preachers, had pronounced her a Jezebel. There the preachers continued their tormenting questioning and cross-questioning, until the poor woman was driven so near to distraction that they with “sad hearts” could frame a charge against her of being possessed with Satan. They therefore wrote to the church at Boston offering to make proof of the same, upon which she was summoned to appear to answer before the church.TTR 619.1

    When she came, one of the ruling elders read a list of twenty-nine “errors,” of all of which they accused her. She admitted that she had maintained all of them, and then asked a pointed question herself.TTR 619.2

    Mrs. H.—“By what rule did such an elder come to me pretending to desire light, and indeed to entrappe me?”TTR 619.3

    The elder.—“I came not to entrappe you, but in compassion to your soul.”TTR 619.4

    The inquisition continued from eight o’clock in the morning until eight o’clock at night, when sentence of admonition was pronounced. The case was then adjourned for a week, when she was caused once more to appear upon her trial, and was charged, amongst other things, with having denied “inherent righteousness.” Of course she was convicted upon all the charges, “so that the church with one consent cast her out.... After she was excommunicated, her spirit, which seemed before to be somewhat dejected, revived again, and she gloried in her sufferings.”TTR 619.5

    “And all this time she had been alone; her friends were far away. That no circumstance of horror might be lost, she and one of her most devoted followers, Mary Dyer, were nearing their confinements during this time of misery. Both cases ended in misfortunes over whose sickening details Thomas Welde and his reverend brethren gloated with a savage joy, declaring that ‘God himselfe was pleased to step in with his casting vote ... as clearly as if he had pointed with his finger.’ Let posterity draw a veil over the shocking scene.”—Adams. 61[Page 620] Id.TTR 619.6

    Happily she escaped with her life. A few days after her condemnation, the governor sent her a warrant banishing her from the territory of Massachusetts. At the solicitation of Roger Williams, she and her friends went to Narragansett Bay. Miantonomoh made them a present of the island of Rhode Island, where they settled.TTR 620.1

    In 1636 about a hundred people, under the leadership of Thomas Hooker, a minister second only to Cotton in the estimate of the colonists, removed from Massachusetts Colony to the valley of the Connecticut, and established there the towns of Springfield, Windsor, Hartford, and Wethersfield; and January 14, 1639, Springfield preferring to remain in the jurisdiction of Massachusetts, the three remaining towns established a form of government under eleven “fundamental orders,” the preamble of which is as follows:—TTR 620.2

    “Forasmuch as it hath pleased the Almighty God by the wise disposition of his divine providence so to order and dispose of things that we, the inhabitants and residents of Windsor, Hartford, and Wethersfield are now cohabiting and dwelling in and upon the river of Connecticut and the lands thereunto adjoining; and well knowing where a people are gathered together, the word of God requires that to maintain the peace and union of such a people there should be an orderly and decent government established according to God, to order and dispose of the affairs of the people at all seasons as occasion shall require; do therefore associate and conjoin ourselves to be as one public state or commonwealth; and do for ourselves and our successors and such as shall be adjoined to us at any time hereafter, enter into combination and confederation together, to maintain and pursue the liberty and purity of the gospel of our Lord Jesus which we now profess, as also the discipline of the churches which according to the truth of the said gospel is now practiced amongst us; as also in our civil affairs to be guided and governed according to such laws, rules, orders, and decrees as shall be made, ordered, and decreed.” 62[Page 620] Charters and Constitutions, Connecticut.TTR 620.3

    Order number four was to the effect that the governor should “be always a member of some approved congregation, and formerly of the magistracy within this jurisdiction.” The oath of office for the governor was as follows:—TTR 620.4

    “I, ____ ____, being now chosen to be governor within this jurisdiction, for the year ensuing, and until a new be chosen, do swear by the great and dreadful name of the everliving God, to promote the public good and peace of the same, according to the best of my skill; as also will maintain all lawful privileges of this commonwealth; as also that all wholesome laws that are or shall be made by lawful authority here established, be duly executed; and will further the execution of justice according to the rule of God’s word; so help me God in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.” 63[Page 621] Id.TTR 621.1

    The oath of the magistrate was substantially the same. Unlike Massachusetts, church membership was not required in order to be a voter. Persons became citizens by vote of the major part of the town where they lived, or the major part of such as should be then present and taking the “oath of fidelity.”TTR 621.2

    In 1637 a colony of Puritan immigrants with John Davenport as their pastor, arrived in Boston, and remained until the spring of 1638, then founded the town and colony of New Haven. In 1639 a colony from New Haven settled the town of Milford, and another company from England settled the town of Guilford. In the same year a form of government was established, and “by the influence of Davenport it was resolved that the Scriptures are the perfect rule of the commonwealth; that the purity and peace of the ordinances to themselves and their posterity were the great end of civil order; and that church members only should be free burgesses.”—Bancroft. 64[Page 621] “History of the United States,” end of chap. “The Colonization of Connecticut.” A committee of twelve was appointed to nominate seven men to become magistrates. In August the seven met together to put into working order the forms of the new government. “Abrogating every previous executive trust, they admitted to the court all church members; the character of civil magistrates was next expounded ‘from the sacred oracles;’ and the election followed. Then Davenport, in the words of Moses to Israel in the wilderness, gave a charge to the governor to judge righteously; ‘The cause that is too hard for you,’ such was part of the minister’s text, ‘bring it to me, and I will hear it.’ Annual elections were ordered; and God’s word established as the only rule in public affairs.” The other towns followed this example, and thus “the power of the clergy reached its extreme point in New Haven, for each of the towns was governed by seven ecclesiastical officers known as ‘pillars of the church.’ These magistrates served as judges, and trial by jury was dispensed with, because no authority could be found for it in the laws of Moses.”—Fiske. 65[Page 622] “Beginnings of New England,” p. 136.TTR 621.3

    In 1643 the four colonies of Massachusetts, Plymouth, Connecticut, and new Haven formed a league called the United Colonies of New England, the purpose of which was defined as follows:—TTR 622.1

    “Whereas wee all came into these parts of America with one and the same end and ayme; namely, to advaunce the kingdome of our Lord Jesus Christ and to enjoy the liberties of the gospell in puritie with peace; And, whereas, in our settleinge (by a wise Providence of God) wee are further dispersed vpon the sea coasts and riuers than was at first intended, so that wee cannot according to our desire with convenience communicate in one govurnment and jurisdiccon, ... we therefore doe conceiue it our bounden dutye without delay to enter into a present consotiation amongst our selues for mutuall help and strength in all our future concernments: That as in nation and religion so in other respects wee bee and continue one according to the tenor and true meaneing of the ensuing articles: Wherefore it is fully agreed and concluded by and between the parties of jurisdiccons aboue named, and they jointly and seuerally doe by these presents agree and conclude that they all bee and henceforth bee called by the name of The United Colonies of New England.TTR 622.2

    “1. The said United Colonies for themselves and their posterities do joyntly and seuerally hereby enter into a firme and perpetuall league of friendship and amytie for offence and defence, mutuall advise, and succour vpon all just occasions both for prescrueing and propagateing the truth and liberties of the gospell and for their owne mutuall safety and wellfare....TTR 622.3

    “6. It is also agreed that for the managing and concluding of all affaires proper and concerning the whole Confederacon two commissioners shall be chosen by and out of eich of these foure jurisdiccons; namely, two for the Massachusetts, two for Plymouth, two for Connectacutt, and two for New Haven, being all in church fellowship with us which shall bring full power from their seueral generall courts respectively to heare examine, weigh, and determine all affairs,” etc. 66[Page 623] “National Reform Manual,” 1890, pp. 223, 224.TTR 623.1

    The population of the four colonies was about twenty-four thousand, Massachusetts having about fifteen thousand, and the other three colonies about three thousand each. The Federal Commissioners formed an advisory board rather than a legislative body. The formation of this league strengthened the theocracy.TTR 623.2

    By the strictness of the rules which had been framed by the preachers to regulate the admission of members to the churches, there were so few that joined the churches, that the membership, which was supposed to include at least the great majority of the people, in fact embraced not more than one third of them. And now as a demand began to be made for freedom of worship according to other than Congregational forms, the Congregational clergy saw that something must be done more firmly to confirm their powerTTR 623.3

    Accordingly at Cambridge, August, 1648, after two years’ reflection, there was framed a “Platform of Church Discipline Gathered out of the Word of God.” It was in fact the establishment of the Congregational Church upon the basis of the confederacy of the four colonies; for throughout, although it professed to maintain the principles of the independence of each congregation, it provided “councils composed of elders, and other messengers of churches to advise, to admonish, and to withhold fellowship from a church,” but not to exercise special acts of discipline, or jurisdiction, in any particular church. And further it provided that if any church should separate itself from the communion of the churches, the magistrates might compel them to conform. “The Westminster Confession was promulgated as the creed; the powers of the clergy were minutely defined, and the duty of the laity stated to be ‘obeying their elders and submitting themselves unto them in the Lord.’ The magistrate was enjoined to punish ‘idolatry, blasphemy, heresy,’ and to coerce any church becoming ‘schismatical.’”—Adams. 67[Page 624] “Emancipation of Massachusetts,” p. 98.TTR 623.4

    In October, 1649, the platform was referred to the general court for consideration and adopted, and was further submitted by them to the churches for their approval. In October, 1651, it was confirmed by each of the legislatures. Thus was the theocracy of Massachusetts completed and clothed with all the power of the commonwealth. And as its power was increased, so were its bitter fruits vastly increased. In 1649 Governor Winthrop died, and was succeeded by John Endicott; and in 1652 John Cotton died, and was succeeded by John Norton, and these two men, John Endicott and John Norton, have been not inaptly described as “two as arrant fanatics as ever drew breath.” And with the accession of these two men to the headship of the complete and fully furnished theocracy, the New England reign of terror may be said to have begun.TTR 624.1

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