IT was far more difficult in the late Civil Wars, for my Lord to raise an Army for His Majesties Service, then it was for the Parliament to raise an Army against His Majesty: Not onely because the Parliament were many, and my Lord but one single Person; but by reason a Kingly or Monarchical Government was then generally disliked, and most part of the Kingdom proved Rebellious, and assisted the Parliament either with their Purses or Persons, or both; when as the Army which my Lord raised for the defence and maintenance of the King, and his Rights, was raised most upon his own and his Friends Interest: For it is frequently seen and known by woful Experience, that rebellious and factious Parties do more suddenly and numerously flock together to act a mischievous design, then loyal and honest men to assist or maintain a just Cause; and certainly ‘tis much to be lamented, that evil men should be more industrious and prosperous then good, and that the Wicked should have a more desperate Courage, then the Virtuous, an active Valour.
I have observed, That many by flattering Poets, have been compared to Caesar, without desert; but this I dare freely and with out flattery say of my Lord, That though he had not Caesars Fortune, yet he wanted not Caesars Courage, nor his Prudence, nor his good Nature, nor his Wit; Nay, in some particulars he did more then Caesar ever did; for though Caesar had a great Army, yet he was first set ont by the State or Senators of Rome, who were Masters almost of all the World; when as my Lord raised his Army (as before is mentioned) most upon his own Interest (he having many Friends and Kindred in the Northern parts) at such a time when his Gracious King and Soveraign was then not Master of his own Kingdoms, He being over power’d by his rebellious Subjects.
I have observed, That my Noble Lord has always had an aversion to that kind of Policy, that now is commonly practised in the world, which in plain tearms is Dissembling, Flattery and Cheating, under the cover of Honesty, Love and Kindness But I have heard him say, that the best Policy is to act justly, honestly and wisely, and to speak truly; and that the old proverb is true ; To be wise is to be honest. For, said he, That man of what Condition, Quality or Profession soever, that is once found out to deceive either in words or actions, shall never be trusted again by wise and honest men. But, said he, A wise
man is not bound to take notice of all Dissemblers, and their cheating Actions, if they do not concern him ; nay, even of those he would not always take notice, but chuse his time; for the chief part of a wise man is to time business well, and to do it without Partiality and Passion. But, said he, The folly of the world is so great, that one honest and wise man may be overpowred by many Knaves and Fools; and if so, then the onely benefit of a wise man consists in the satisfaction he finds by his honest and wise actions, and that he has done what in Conscience, Honour and Duty he ought to do; and all successors of such worthy Persons ought to be more satisfied in the worth and merit of their Predecessours, then in their Title and Riches.
I have heard that some noble Gentleman, (who was servant to His Highness then Prince of Wales, our now Gracious Soveraign, when my Lord was Governour) should relate, that whensoever my Lord by his prudent inspection and foresight did foretell what would come to pass hereafter; it seemed so improbable to him, that both himself and some others believed my Lord spoke extravagantly But some few years after, his predictions proved true, and the event did confirm what his Prudence had observed,
I have heard, That in our late Civil Warres there were many petty Skirmishes, and Forti
fications of weak and inconsiderable Houses, where some small Parties would be shooting and pottering at each other; an action more proper for Bandites or Thieves, then stout and valiant Soldiers; for I have heard my Lord say, That such small Parties divide the Body of an Army, and by that means weaken it; whereas the business might be much easier decided in one or two Battels, with less ruine both to the Country and Army:
For I have heard my Lord say, That as it is dangerous to divide a Limb from the Body; so it is also dangerous to divide Armies or Navies in time of Warr; and there are often more men lost in such petty Skirmishes, then in set-Battels, by reason those happen almost every day, nay every hour in several places.
Many in our late Civil-Warres, had more Title then Power; for though they were Generals, or chief Commanders, yet their Forces were more like a Brigade, then a well- formed Army; and their actions were accordingly, not set-battels, but petty Skirmishes between small Parties ; for there were no great Battels fought, but by my Lord’s Army, his being the greatest and best-formed Army which His Majesty had.
Although I have observed, That it is a usual Custom of the World, to glorifie the present Power and good Fortune, and vilifie ill Fortune and low conditions; yet I never
heard that my Noble Lord was ever neglected by the generality; but was on the contrary, alwayes esteemed and praised by all; for he is truly an Honest and Honourable man, and one that may be relied upon both for Trust and Truth.
I have observed, That many instead of great Actions, make onely a great Noise, and like shallow Fords, or empty Bladders, sound most when there is least in them ; which expresses a flattering Partiality, rather then Honesty and Truth; for Truth and Honesty lye at the bottom; and have more Action then Shew.
I have observed, That good Fortune adds Fame to mean Actions, when as ill Fortune darkens the splendor of the most meritorious; for mean Persons plyed with good Fortune, are more famous then Noble Persons that are shadowed or darkned with ill Fortune; so that Fortune, for the most part, is Fame’s Champion.
I observe, That as it would be a grief to covetous and miserable persons, to be rewarded with Honour, rather then with Wealth, because they love Wealth, before Honour and Fame; so on the other side, Noble, Heroick and Meritorious Persons, prefer Honour and Fame before Wealth; well knowing, That as Infamy is the greatest Punishment of unworthiness, so Fame and
Honour is the best Reward of worth and merit.
I observe, that spleen and malice, especially in this age, is grown to that height, that none will endure the praise of any body besides themselves; nay, they’l rather praise the wicked then the good; the Coward rather then the Valiant ; the Miserable then the Generous; the Traytor, then the Loyal: which makes Wise men meddle as little with the Affairs of the world as ever they can.
I have observed, as well as former Ages have done, That Meritorious persons, for their noble actions, most commonly get Envy and Reproach, instead of Praise and Reward; unless their Fortunes be above Envy, as Caesar’s and Alexander’s were; But had these two Worthies been as Unfortunate as they were Fortunate, they would have been as much vilified, as they are glorified.
I have observed, that it is more easie to talk, then to act; to forget, then to remember; to punish, then to reward and more common to prefer Flattery before Truth, Interest before Justice, and present service before past.
I have observed, that many old Proverbs are very true, and amongst the rest, this:
It is better to be at the latter end of a Feast, then at the beginning of a Fray; for most commonly, those that are in the beginning of a Fray, get but little of the Feast, and those that have undergone the greatest dangers, have least of the spoils.
I have observed, That Favours of Great Princes make men often thought Meritorious; whereas without them, they would be esteemed but as ordinary Persons.
I observe, That in other Kingdoms or Countries, to be the chief Governour of a Province, is not onely a place of Honour, but much Profit; for they have a great Revenue to themselves; whereas in England, the Lieutenancy of a County is barely a Title of Honour, without Profit; except it be the Lieutenancy or Government of the Kingdom of Ireland; especially since the late Earl of Stafford enjoyed that dignity, who setled that Kingdom very wisely both for Militia and Trade.
I have observed, That those that meddle least in Wars, whether Civil or Foreign, are not onely most safe and free from danger, but most secure from Losses; and though Heroick Persons esteem Fame before Life, yet many there are, that think the wisest way is to be a Spectator, rather then an
Actor, unless they be necessitated to it; for it is better, say they, to sit on the Stool of Quiet, then in the Chair of Troublesome Business.