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taken at the respectful Letter we had written to his faid Majefty, the care we are bound to have of our Honour, and what we owe to our Subjects, doth not give us leave to defer any longer the laying of our Innocence open, and to make known to all Europe the Justice of our Arms, which we'll be always ready to lay down as soon as the Violence of our Enemies shall cease ; as we did not take them up, but out of an unavoidable necefhty.
Howbeit, before we go further, we think it necessary to defire his Majesty of Great Britain to be perfuaded, that our intention is not to offend his Royal Person, for which we have ever had, and will ftill have, all imaginable Respeit, altho the strength of Truth doth constrain us to disown most of what his Ministers have persuaded him to aver.
We do also defire all those of the English Nation, into whose hands these may come, to read them with an impartial Mind, and to seek only the Truth in them, without considering it comes from Enemies, since we bear that Title with much regret ; and that we desire nothing more earnestly, than to see our felves united again with a Nation, to which we are link'd by the facred Bont of the same Religion, besides a joint Interest in several other respects.
English Declaration. ANSWER.
E have been always so peaW
E never intended to Tous for the Quiet of Chri.
call in question the stendom, and lo careful not to In- peaceable and generous Intenvade any other Kingdom or State, tions of the King of Great Brithat we hope the World will do tain; and we are enough perUs the fustice to believe, that it suaded, that all the misunderis nothing but inevitable Necefity standing that hath been beforceth Us to the Resolution of ta- tween us since his Restoration, king up Arms.
hath proceeded only from the Immediately upon Our Restau- Counsels of ill-affected Perration to Our Crowns, the first sons. But by reason that to work We undertook, was the elta- what concerns the Person of blishing of Peace, and the jetling his Majesty, (which we do not a good correspondence between Us gainsay they add several And Our Neighbours; and in par- groundless Accusations relaticular, Our care was, to conclude ting to our felves, a short and a strict League with the States. faithful Account of what hath General of the United Provinces, pass’d most conliderable before upont
upon such equal Terms, es would the Treaty of Breda, will fufficertainly not have been broken, if ciently demonstrate which of any Obligations could have kept both Parties hath moft endeathem within the bounds of Friend-vour'd to preserve a fair Corship or Justice.
respondence, and who have This League was maintaind in-fought Peace with the greatest violable on Our part. But in the reality and zeal. Tear 1664. we were stirred up by When his Majefty of Great the Complaints of Our People, and Britain was miraculously called the unanimous Vote of Both Our again by his Subjects to the Houses of Parliament ; finding it a Government of his Kingdoms, vain Attempt to endeavour the Pro- he was pleased to make choice Sperity of Our Kingdoms by peace of one of our Towns to receive able ways at home, whilst Our the Deputies that were fent Subjets were still expos’d to the to him, and stay'd with us till Injuries and oppressions of those all things were ready for his States abroad.
Transportation. During the That whole Summer was spent said time, we endeavour'd to in Negotiations and Endeavours on give him all possible DemonOur fide, to bring them to reason a- ftrations of Our respect to his ble Terms, which notwithstanding Person, and of the fervent deall We could do, proved at length fire we had to purchase his in effe&ual; for the more we pur. Friendship, and to preserve sued them with friendly Propositi. the same inviolable. And what ons, the more obstinately they kept we did in that respect, prov'd off from agreeing with us. so acceptable to his Majesty,
Upon this ensued the War in the and did so far persuade hím of Tear 1665. and continued to the the fincerity of our intentions, Tear 1667. in all which time Our that he was pleased to acknowVi&tories and their Losses were me- ledg it much beyond what we morable enough, to put them in expected ; and assured us, with mind of being more faithful to the most obliging Expressions, their Leagues for the future. But that he was resolved,' and did instead of that, the Peace was no earnestly delire to enter with sooner made, but they returned to our State into a stricter Allie their usual custom of breaking Arti- ance than any of his Predecles, and supplanting our Trade. cessors had done, and that he
did hope his Restoration would be of no less advantage to the Inhabitants of our Provinces than to his own Subjects, and that they should all taste the fruits of it with an equal satisfaction : Adding to this, that he should not without jealousy see us prefer the Friendship or Alliance of any other Prince before his. Several general Proposals and Projeets of Treaties were made even at that time; after which we rent a folemn Embassy to put an end to what had been already propos’d, and to offer on our part all that
was both reasonable and fearable. But our Einbassadors were no sooner arriv'd, but they perceiv'd a great Alteration in the Mind and Inclinations of his said Majesty, and found that some ill-affected Persons had potless’d him againit us since he had left the Hague : So that inst-ad of concluding the Alliance which he had propos'd to us Himself, he began to fide with other Princes against us.' And in particular, tho the War we had with Portugal was most just and most warrantable, yet he openly threatned to break with us, if we did seek any longer, by way of Arms, a reparation of the Wrongs we had receiv'd from that Crown.
In the mean time, our Embassadors did not intermit their Instances, and press'd with all poffible Zeal for the concluding of a stricter Alliance with the Crown of England: But after several Objections and Difficulties rais'd by that Court, upon the Articles which our Emballadors had propos’d, in conforinity to the Project that had been made, whilst his Majefty was ftill at the Hague; the Commissioners with whom they treated, offer'd them at lait, after above a Year's delay, the Treaty which was concluded in the Year 1654 with Cromwell: And this Treaty could not be confirm'd neither, but with much diificulty and trouble, and with the addition of several Points, that made it more disadvantagious to us than the very Treaty of 1654.
At laft, having overcome all those Difficulties, and given to the King of Great Britain so clear Proofs of the fingular Efteem we had of his Friendship, we thought thereby to have laid the Fountation of a firm and durable Peace,' and did hope the English Ministers would have contributed on their part, as we did on ours, to extinguish the least Sparks of Dilcord: But the Treaty was no sooner concluded, than they begun to renew and set on foot certain Pretensions, that were regulated in general by the Treaty, but not perfectly ended. And whilst the Embaladur Downing made a great Noise in the Hague, of a few groundless Demands of fone private Merchants, they fent a Fleet to potsess themselves of several Pla. ces belonging to us upon the coast of Guiney, and of all the New Netherlands; and that in the midit of a setled Peace, with. out a previous Declaration of War, and without any denial on our part, to give thein fatisfaction upon any Complaint they had made: and afterwards they seiz'd all our Merchant Ships that fail'd along their Coast.
Th se Excuties were follow'd by a Declaration of War; during which, we may truly lay, we never refus'd to hearken to any Overture of Peace that was made to us, either by Princes and States, or by any other unconcernd Persons; But, to
the contrary, we let no opportunity slip of making Overtures of Peace our felves, upon the least glimpse of hopes it might be done with success. Having in order to that kept our Em. baffador in England, during the best part of the War; and having still, fince his coming away, offers from time to time to his Majesty of Great Britain, the very Alternative upon which Peace was at last concluded (which was either to keep what had been conquer'd on either side, or tò restore all reciprocally) without seeking to make any advantage of the Conjunction of France, which had then declar'd in our behalf.
All this doch fufficiently shew how zealous we have always been for Peace; and even without any other proof, one may casily imagine we'll ever be desirous of what is the true Foundation of the Happiness of our Country, as it is the Support of our Trade.
All those that are in any measure acquainted with the state of our Affairs, can't but know that a War by Sea, such as this we are engag'd in now, is of all Rocks, that which at all times we'll avoid with the greatest Care; and that nothing but an inevitable Necessity can bring us to the Taking up of Arms in case they will but grant us ever so little
Prudence and Wisdom, altho they would not own we keep our Treaties (as ve may truly fay we have ever done ) out of a Principle of Conscience and Honour. And therefore the Proofs which England doth instance in, of our averseness to Peace, and of the perpetual Infraction of our Treaties, muft needs carry a ftrong Demonstration with them, to make good a Paradox that is so niuch againit al Sense and Reason. Let us then examine in order those pretended Infractions, and see how far the Compilers of the Manifejlo do make it appear w: have yiolated the Peace of Breda. TOR Instance ; The States were HÉ firit Infradion they
particularly engag'd in an Ar complain of, and which ticle of the Treaty at Breda, to in all likelihood ought to be Jend commissioners to Us at Lon- very considerable, tince it leads don, about the Regulation of our the Van, hath four several Trade in the East-Indies: But Branches : 1. That we were they were so far from doing it upon | bound by the aforesaid Treaty that Obligation, that when we sent of Breda, to send Commissioners over Our Ambassador to put them to London, to regulate ihe Easta in mind of it, he could not in three India Trade ; which we have years time get from them any fa- not done. 2. That this forcd tisfa&tion in the material Points, the King of Great Britain to“ nor a forbearance of the Wrongi rend us an Embafiador, to put which 'Our Subje&t's yeceit'd in lus in nind of what we had thule Partsi
promis'd. 3. That the said Embaffador could not in three
get from us any satisfaction in the material Points; nor, 4. A forbearance of the Wrongs which the Subjects of his said Majesty receiv'd in those Parts.
Whereupon we can't but take notice, that this, in all probability, is the first Manifesto in the World that ever began with an Article, whereof every part is a mere Supposition; and wherein, of all the Matter of fact that is alledg'd, there is not the least Point agreeable to Truth. For, 1. Let the whole Treaty of Breda be read and examin'd with Care, no Clause will be found whereby either in express or equivalent Terms, we were bound to send Commissioners to London ; much less to send any thither for the Regulation of the East-India Trade, which is not so much as mention'd in all the Treaty. Which makes us wunder at the surprizing Boldness of those who dare publish and aver, in the fight of all Europe, a thing which doth confute it felf; and the Falshood whereof may be evinc'd, by producing only the very Treaty they do quote and ground themselves upon. 2. How is it possible the King of Great Britain should send us an Ambaffador, to put us in mind of that which never was, and which we could not have promised, since it had not been so much as spoken of? 3. What Essen. tial Points could have been mov'd upon an imaginary Clause ant Engagement? and there being nothing in that respect agreed upon by the Treaty of Breda, what satisfaction could they demand from us? 4. We may with Sincerity and Truth affirm, that hitherto we have not heard that our East-Indis Company, since the last Peace, hath done any wrong to, or committed any Violence against the Subjects of the King of Great Britain; and withal, that his Embassador never complain'd to as of it in the least; which undoubtedly he would have done, if there had been any ground for it. But to demonstrate further the Injustice of this Complaint, and how ill grounded it is, we are assured from good hands, that the Committee of the English East-India Company, having been desir'd by the Court to bring in their Grievances, with a List of the Inju. ries they had receiv'd in the Indies since the Treaty of Breda; they answer'd in writing, They had receiv'd none.
But what is little less surprizing than all the rest, is, that they lay to our charge to have violated the Treaty of Breda in relation to the East-India Trade, which is not mention'd in it, instead of returning us Thanks for what we have done in that respect, without being bound to't by any Treaty; and merely to let the King and all the EnglifNation fee at what rate we were willing to purchase and to preserve their Friendthip. In few words, the thing was thus.