Category — Sovereignty
THE poor Protestants in Hungary, when Count Teckely took Arms, were something, in my Opinion, like the disciples of our Saviour, who thought he was come to restore the Temporal Kingdom to Israel: The Innocent People had been Insulted, and ill Treated by the Germans, but especially by the Priests; who always taking Care to misrepresent them to the Emperor, as the Principals in the Discontents and Disturbances of the Hungarians; took Care, also that whatever Breaches happen’d between the Hungarians and the Germans, were upon all occasions, plac’d to the account of the Protestants: Upon these suggestions, the Priests, like Satan in the Case of Job, got the Power of them, and had them committed, as it were, to their Discretion, with a Behold! He is in thy hands.
Nor did the Emperor in this Case, imitate the Merciful part of the Almighty’s Commission to Satan, in the Case of Job, but save his Life; for these poor Miserables were deliver’d over, without any Restriction, to the Soldiers, and to the Priests; the first it may be suppos’d, had little compassion for their goods, the latter had less for their Lives and Posterity; and in the Prosectution of this Latitude, their churches were seiz’d, their Schools dissolv’d, their Estates and Honours sequestred, their Persons imprisoned, and drag’d to Publick Executions; all manner of Injuries and Oppressions practised upon the People, and all sorts of Cruelties upon their Ministers, 200 of which we find at one time in the Spanish Galleys, coupled with Turks, Moors, and Malefactors, and Condemn’d to the Miseries of the Oar, a Martyrdom, if I may be allow’d to be Judge, much worse, and more intolerable than the severest Tortures of a Dioclesian Persecution.
Yet under all these Extremities, the horror of which I cannot pretend to describe by words, nor can the 24 Letters, be capable of such a Position, as to Convey true and proportion’d Idea’s of their Sufferings, to the Mind; yet I say, under all these Extremities, the Protestants of Hungary never offer’d to take Arms, or to rise in their own Defence; never Oppos’d Force to Violence, or Defended the Just and Native Right they had, as Men and Christians, to the Freedom and Independency of Conscience; but Patiently, and with a Passive Fortitude, unexampled in these latter Ages of the World, submitted their Necks to the Yoke of Persecution, and became Martyrs to their Cause, chearfully Suffering all the Indignities, Tortures and Distresses, that a Cruel Ecclesiastick Tyranny, which is always the worst, could Invent.
Not that it was not Lawful for them to have, by Force, repell’d such unjust Oppressions; and that Murther, Tyranny and Injustice, may not be withstood by the Innocent Oppress’d People, whenever they find all Peaceable, Legal  Methods, ineffectual to Secure their Civil, or Religious Right – This is a Doctrine so rooted in the Laws of Nature, so confirm’d from Heaven, and so constantly Practised by all People, and Nations in the World, of what Religion or Profession soever; that to Oppose it, must be to extinguish Reason, obliterate Nature, contradict the Practice of Immemorial Custom, and give up the Power God has intrusted every Man with, to defend the Blessings bestow’d, and which it must be as Lawful to Maintain as Enjoy. [Read more →]
October 31, 2008 Comments Off
IN my Account of the Hungarians, I think I have plainly enough distinguish’d, that I am of Opinion, those of them call’d Protestants, were not either the first in the Design, or first in the Execution, of the Revolt from the Emperor; but as they came at last, to joyn in the general Revolution of Affairs, and to have the deepest share in the Suffering part, ’tis necessary I should say something to let the World see how far they were, or were not, concern’d in it.
I can not but think ’tis a little hard, that some who are tender of the Reputation of the Protestants, should be so Partial, as to believe I should not do them Justice in this Relation, or so impatient, as not to wait till the Course of the Story brought me to it.
The Reflection made on the Relation, and on the Author, have so little weight in them, that I have not really thought them worth Notice hitherto, and shall only touch on them now; To say of the Author, he has chang’d his Principles, and writes to please a Party, is to show themselves as Weak as Malicious; since as in all his Practice, no Man can be nam’d that has more to his Personal Prejudice, despised the Partiality of Parties, and is not asham’d to affirm, that as no Party in the World can make him an offer large enough to Tempt him to forsake his Principles, so neither can they Terrify him from owning the Truth, which he has always adher’d to.
Nor is this at all concern’d in his Writing of the Hungarian Malecontents; and if these Censorious Gentlemen please to have Patience, they will find the Author of these Sheets freely declaring himself upon the Principle of Salus Populi Suprema lex, as often as there shall be occasion; and sufficiently to defend himself from the Scandal of shifting his Principles. [Read more →]
October 24, 2008 Comments Off
THE State of the Case between Emperor and the Hungarians, was by the last Review, brought to this; That the Germans, tho’ they were brought in to Assist them against the Turks, have Opprest them so much, and Treated them so Barbarously, that they now desire rather to submit to the Turk than to the German; and that they ought to have their Liberty.
I confess ’tis pity they that would be Slaves, should not be Gratifi’d with the Advantage of that Happy Condition; especially when they are brought so low, as to chose Turkish Slavery, which of all sorts of Bondage, was ever thought the worst.
But there are a great many Cases, wherein People have not a Right to dispose of themselves; and most of those particulars concur here.
As first; When a Nation that is a Barrier to another, will give it self over the Enemy, it has always been thought justifiable in the other Nation to seize on it by force, to prevent the Neighbourhood of a too powerful Nation: This has been the Case of Flanders, as to England and Holland, who have thought themselves oblig’d on all occasions, to prevent the Flemings falling into the hands of the French. [Read more →]
September 23, 2008 No Comments
I am not going to lessen their Grievances, nor indeed, to enquire into the Particulars; if they have been us’d as we are told they have, ’tis bad enough.
But the Case before us, is to bring the Subject of Complaint, and the Persons complaining, to a fair Head, and make the great Relative here agree with the Antecedent.
September 12, 2008 No Comments