parliamentary or royal imposition, prejudicial to the
country, and contrary to any just act of colonial legislation.’
The duties of allegiance were narrowed to a few points, which conceded neither profit nor substantial power.
When the Puritan
commonwealth had thus joined issue with its sovereign, by denying the right of appeal from its courts, and with the English parliament, by declaring the navigation act an infringement of its chartered rights, on the seventh of August, more than
a year after the restoration, Charles II.
was proclaimed at Boston
, amidst the cold observation of a few formalities.
Yet the ‘gratulatory and lowly script,’ sent him on the same day, interpreted his letter as an answer of peace from ‘the best of kings.’
‘Royal Sir,’ it continued, excusing the tardiness of the colony with unseemly adulation, ‘your just title to the crown, enthronizeth you in our consciences; your graciousness in our affections; that inspireth unto dutie, this naturalizeth unto loyaltie; thence wee call you lord, hence a saviour.
Mephibosheth, how prejudicially soever misrepresented, yet rejoiceth that the king is come in peace to his owne house.
Nowe the Lord
hath dealt well with our lord the king, may New England
, under your royal protection, bee permitted still to sing the Lord
's song in this strange land.’
The young republic had continued the exercise of its government as of right; complaints against her had multiplied; and her own interests, seconding the express orders of the monarch, induced her to send envoys to London
The country was divided in opinion; the large majority insisted on sustaining its established system in undiminished force; others were willing to make such concessions as would satisfy
the ministry of Clarendon
The first party prevailed, and on the last day of December, John Norton