A Song of Thanksgiving for the lasting Remem|brance of Gods wonder|ful worsk, never to be forgotten.
FIrst. I’le begin with Eighty eight,
That most admyred year,
When’t was in king of Spains conceipt
Ore’s all to domineer.
The Seas were spred with stately saile,
their Men and their Munition
Were all prepared without faile
to bring us to perdition.
How many scores of Shipping-tall,
and of their Gallyes long!
How many Regiments withal
of Souldiers stout and strong!
How many hundred Horse to praunce,
and Mules for carriage meet!
How many thousand Ordinance
were carryed in the Fleet!
How many hundred thousand pound
of Powder and of Bullet!
How many millions were found
of victuals for the Gullet!
Who so would make a just account
must reckon for the least,
For to such number all amount
as cannot be exprest.
Besides, great store and company
of tearing torturing Whips,
And instruments of cruelty,
provided in their Ships;
As meaning not to be so kind,
our blood at once to spill,
But by our lingring pain, their mind
and bloody lusts to fill.
From seven years old, (or if not so,
from ten and so forth on)
All had been kill’d, both high and low,
their Sword could light upon.
Virgins had dyde, when they had first
the Virgins honour lost:
Women unript, on Spears accurst,
had seen their Infants tost.
The children, whom they meant to save,
with brand of Iron hot,
Were in their face (like Indian slave,)
to bear a seared spot.
Their Soul (alas) had been a spoyle
to Soul-destroying Pope;
Their bodyes spent in restless toyle,
without all ease or hope.
There were but few that should obtain
this mercy, which was such
As if you reckon up the gaine,
You’l say it was not much.
Yea, they that serv’d the Romish gods
had been within the hemme
Of Spanish sword, which knew no odds
(or small) twixt us them.
For death of Catholicks (quoth they)
we need not to be sorry:
Their Souls shall goe the Catholick way,
to Heaven or Purgatory.
As for their wealth and dignity,
all this for us doth make;
For all (how much so ere it be,)
shall fall unto our stake.
Oh blessed Souls! what better course
the highest heaven to merit,
Then if such Catholicks, perforce,
their lands and goods inherit?
“Such Catholicks as had the Popes
“most solemn blessing past,
“To all that would their wealth and hopes,
“into this Navy cast-
“For (you must know) the Popes Crusade
“was sent, or gentle Bull,
“To all that would this great Armade,
“enrich with purses full.
“Or, gave thereto a lesser fleece;
“who so gave what they could,
“Were quit, for thirteen pence a piece,
“of all sins new and old
“Thus went the Host to Sea with fame,
“renowned there to brave it;
“The invincible Navy was the name
“their holy Father gave it.
“Nor doubted they to make their Song
“of triumph before hand,
“As if already Spanish throngs
“had conquered our land.
“Mendoz‘ mendaciously begun,
“in France to give it out,
“[England is won, all England won,
“their forces put to rout.]
“Meayna was the Admiral
“of this new Christned Fleet,
“Who left his wife, friends, goods and all,
“in zeal (but indiscreet.)
“He sought to Christ and Mary both.
“and to all Saints beside;
“Sole Christ to credit very loth,
“in doubtful wind and tide.
“Our little Fleet in July first,
“their mighty Fleet did view:
“She came but with a softly course,
“though winds behind her blew.
“Her front much like the Moon was crook’t,
“(the horns seven miles asunder)
“Her Mastes like stately Towers look’t,
“the Ocean groaning under.
“And now behold they were at hand,
“daring our English Borders,
“Making full sure to bring our Land
“Under their Spanish orders:
But God above, laughing to scorne
their wicked wile and wealth.
To his Annointed rais’d an horne
of hope and saving health.
“Prince, Prophets, people, joyntly cry’d
“TO CHRIST ALONE for ayd;
“Whose power invincible was try’d
“with Banner all displayd.
“That noble Drake drave on apace,
“and made the Spaniard dive;
“And Hawkins follow’d hard the chase,
“them all away to drive.
“With these, well forbisht Forbisher,
“their Navy did assayle:
“All at her back did thunder her
“and swept away her tayle.
“Those were the Worthies three, which first,
“(next to their Admiral)
“Ventur’d the hostile ranks to burst,
“(spight of their Don-Recall)
“And many moe of great renowne
“did bravely play their part,
“In skill and valour putting downe
“the Spanish strength and art.
“But why do I record the men,
“that fought with such as brav’d us?
“I said, (and so I say agen,)
“[It was the Lord that sav’d us.]
He arm’d from Heaven his mighty Hoast,
to batter Babel’s Towers:
His Angels (though unseen) oppos’d
their si•e and helped ours.
“They which to creatures yield the trust
“from the Creator taken.
“Of him and them it is most just
“they should be quite forsaken.
The blustring winds the swelling waves,
the crackes of flashing fire,
Each in their turn did check the braves
of Spains inraged Ire.
Eight of our Ships, of wild-fire, pitch,
Rosen, and brimstone full,
And such like other matter which
was most combustible,
Were set on fire; and (guided well)
in secret of the night,
By help of wind, it them befell
on Spanish Fleet to light.
The Spaniards saw how near they came,
(at Anchor as they lay,)
The Sea all-bright with shining flame
(as if it had been day.)
Who fearing lest our Ships (beside
the hurt of fierie crack)
Might with some deadly Engines ride,
unto their utter wrack:
All lifting up with one consent
an hideous woful cry,
Did fill with bitterest lament
the Ocean and the Sky.
Some pull up Anchors, some for hast
their massie Cables cut:
They set up Sayles, and all agast,
their hand to Owers put.
And, smitten with a pannick terror,
confusedly they fled,
As whom their own bewitching error,
To shame and sorrow led.
They fled with shame, the way they came,
one from another scattred:
Their Shipping tall with Cannon ball,
was soundly beat and battred.
Their reckning was, that Parmoes Duke
should help them with his force;
But God his courage did rebuke,
from taking such a course.
‘Tis best, thought he, for me and mine,
to keep us where we are;
For they (we see) are fain to whine,
that ventured so farre.
Our Holland-friends with us kept watch,
upon the coast of Flanders:
He might have soon met with his match,
if not with his Commanders.
Yet at the last he was so stout,
when to the Lady of Hall,
His vowes were paid on knees devout)
his Armed Troops to call;
With whom he did to Dunkerk pass
(but later then was meet)
So that by some he twitted was,
as false to Spanish Fleet.
Thus where they left of God and men,
to wracks of wind and weather.
Their thoughts were high before, but then,
they fainted altogether.
They came not forth so thick before;
but now they went as thin,
Their numbers were abated sore,
that numberless had bin.
“As Saul did Amalek, or worse,
“they vow’d us all to handle,
“As whom their Balaam
“with Book, and Bell and Candle.
“But they themselves combining thus,
“where the true Amalex-brood,
“of God accurst for cursing us,
“in their malitious mood.
“Themselves were made a gazing stock,
“a by word and reproach,
“Upon the Israelitish flock,
“presuming to encroach.
Thus might they ban their Idol gods,
with discontented lours,
And well perceive the mighty odds,
between their faith and ours.
“For though sometime, the way is not
“best, that hath best success:
“And ‘t may be holy Sions lot,
“to suffer great distress:
“Nor is a Church prov’d good or ill,
“by any outward things;
“But that is known for Sion-hill
“that cripture warrant brings.
“Yet such as Idols do adore,
“or Christ an Idol make,
“Preferring Idols him before,
“or parting them a stake;
“What heavy dooms do them abide
“come from Gods wrath above.
“As what the Saints doth well betide,
“confirms them in his love.
“Thus God in dayes of elder hue
“”did take his peoples part,
“When Egypts King did them pursue,
“into the red Seas heart.
“Their wheels fell of, and Chariots went,
“Full oft (for all their frowning)
“And then by flying back they meant,
“to save themselves from drowning.
“They said before, We will them follew,
“and take, and put to foyle;
‘They are a prey for us to swallow,
“and for our Sword to spoyle.
“But by and by they chang’d their Song,
“Oh let us flee apace,
“God doth the Hebrews fight among,
“To kill us in this place.
“For God with sudden winds did blow,
“upon the heaped waves,
“And made them soon to overflow,
“the proud in all their braves.
“They sank as led in waters gulph,
“Horse, Chariots, men, and all.
“The Sheep escap’t the cruel Wolfe
“himself did get the fall.
“Then Moses sang victoriously,
“and all his saved Traine,
“Led through the Sea most gloriously,
“to the dry Land again,
“They looked back, and saw their Foes
“floating some here, some there,
“Whom late and long they feared, those
“they caused now to fear,
“The women sang with pleasant voyce,
“at Myriams direction,
“Wth dance, and Timbrels merry noyse,
“for this so rare protection,
What better type of Englands bliss,
saved from Spanish fury?
The Sea, that was our safety, is
a grave our foes to bury.
Even now, we heard of their approach,
(who feared not that heard it?
But by and by to their reproach,
They fled before they feard it.
Not above fifteen of our Ships,
did bear the battels brunt,
Which, being light, with nimble Skips,
did theirs at pleasure hunt,
Nor was there any shipping lost,
of ours, save only one;
And that our Enemies dearly cost,
(better th’ad let’t alone.)
When many hundreds had been slain
for one of ours, or less,
Chased away with broken Traine,
they wandred in distress
With Tempests they were tost and shaken,
(all Brittain driv’n about.)
Some drowned in the deep, some taken,
where they could ill get out.
Some of them cast on Scottish shores,
(and by the Kings release,
More then seven hundred Souldiers
were sent away in peace.)
On Irish shores were others cast,
who fared not so well,)
Wild Irish, Fowle, foul Weathers blast,
upon these fiercely fell.
Their Navy, which with wondrous cost,
was full three years preparing.
In one Months space was (well nigh) lost,
without our cost or caring.
(I say it was not cost so much
or care of ours prevail’d,
But God would have the pride of such
as fought against him quail’d.)
Of all their goodly Ships remain’d
after this dismal War;
Scarce forty which at all attain’d,
to their own Havens-bar.
And those that with so much adoe,
at last arrived thither,
With heavy hearts needs must they goe
all rent with War and Weather.
No sooner came this happy news,
unto our listning ear.
But all our sad laments and rues
were turn’d to merry chear.
Our VIRGIN-QUEEN with holy dance,
unto her Timbrel sang,
Our Land for this Deliverance,
with shouting-Ecchoes rang.
Her Soul had marcht (like Deborah)
amidst the armed Train,
Her Faith had scorn’d with holy laugh
the bragging Hoast of Spain.
In hottest danger did she rest,
Upon the Lord she •erv’d;
And him in midst of Triumph blest,
as he had well deserv’d.
Unto the house of God she went,
in royallest array,
With thankful and devout intent
her promis’d vows to pay:
The Nobles her accompaned,
each Citizen in colour,
(The conquer’d Banners fully spred,
to make the Triumph fuller.)
The Preacher blaz’d with cheerful voyce,
our glorious preservation,
The Temple sounded with the noyse,
of joyful acclamation.
Kings Philips friends did much condole,
to see his feats defeated,
True Brittain lips seem’d with a cole,
from heavenly Altar heated.
But, oh alas! the real thanks,
(which is our lives amending)
Was far away; men of all ranks,
their wicked lusts defending.
God waited long for our return,
unto a purer straine;
But we cast off his Word with spurne,
and horrible disdain.
This made our God bethink himself,
how to correct our sin,
As Father whips his peevish else
that hath unruly bin.
(When Pharaohs Hoast was overthrown,
yet no due fruit returned,
The wrath of God against his own,
gain-saying people burned.)
ANd first, our Queen Elizabeth
ended her life and Reign;
To shew that all hope is a breath,
soon come, soon gone again;
Unless as children we depend
on God the surest stay;
Unless our hearts we fully bend,
his pleasure to obey.
Our grief was great for her decease,
no lesser was our fear,
But God did soon our Souls release
and from all fainting reare
Our Sun was set but rose a fresh,
our hearts were fill’d with laughter,
To see King James the Crown possess
so quietly, soon after.
No Spear against him lifted was,
at home nor yet abroad,
All as one man with common voyce,
his coming did applaud,
But least we should be overjoy’d,
and hope beyond all bounds,
Just then, our Kingdome was annoy’d,
with Plague that all confounds:
I say, all such, in humane prop,
as dare to put their trust,
Not caring all the while to lop,
or leave their wicked lust.
Some three and twenty years agoe,
(or there about) at least,
God smote the Land with heavy blow
of this contagious pest.
In three moneths space to death did pine
(witness the London-bill)
Thirty four thousand seventy nine,
yet had not death its fill.
Three thousand three hundred eighty five,
in one week did depart,
And many thousands moe alive,
remained sick at heart.
And in each County, City, Town,
almost all England over,
Men of all sorts were smitten down,
nor could themselves recover.
It should have then repented us,
of our enormous life,
Whereby we forc’t our Father thus
to wrath and anger rise.
Though we would not repent, yet he
repented ne’re the less,
His tender bowels yearn’d to see
the depth of our distress
His bow unbent, his Arrows keen
were cast behind the back.
The flames which long full hot had been,
were made ere long to slack.
We for all this, resolved not
more purely God to serve.
Therefore our foes devis’d a Plot,
such as our sins deserve.
A Plot (to think on) so abhorr’d
as heart doth fear and quake,
A Plot, that when I would record,
my pen and hand do shake.
FUll twenty years agoe it was,
one thousand six hundred five,
When Papists, zealous for the Masse,
in England did contrive;
The King, Queen, Peer, and noble Peers,
the Prelate, Judge, and Knight,
And Burgesses, with powder fire
all at a clap to smite.
At Dunkerk, and at Lambeth both,
they did of things agree,
With solemn Sacramental Oath,
of deepest secrecy.
When Spanish Navy had no force,
nor Plots of forreign foes,
They meant to take a surer course,
the scap’t bird to enclose.
That is, with Art to undermine
the house of Parliament,
(No fitter place to be the signe,
of such a damn’d intent.)
There had the cruel Laws been made,
against their Romish Priests,
There will they dig with cruel spade,
and meet their mining lists.
But who would taxe (beside themselves,)
of Rigour such a Law,
As gave the use of life to Elves
that had so curst a jaw?
A jaw so curstly wide, as would
have swallowed at a bit,
Great Englands head and body, should
the Lord have suffred it.
After some digging they discry
a Cellar to be near,
Which they resolve to hire or buy,
should it be ne’re so dear.
They laid their powder in this Vault,
full six and thirty Barrels,
With one unheard of deep assault,
to end their former quarrels.
(Note by the way the Romish Whore,
hath Barrels in her Cellar.
In March she brewed, or before,
but I’le be bold to tell her;
Thy Christmas doth not yet approach
why laist thou in so fast?
Before thy time, thou mean’st to broach,
thy brewing will be waste.)
Billets and Faggots hid this stuff
great stones and iron crowes.
(To cause a more massacring puffe)
were piled under those,
Now was Novembers fifth at hand,
when ore this hellish pit,
Both head and body of the Land
were all at once to sit.
When furious Fauxe with matches three,
(for spickets) was provided,
The rest of this fraternity,
were very closely sided.
Monyes they had good store, and horse,
(some more then was their own.)
And thought to gather mighty force,
by roving up and down.
From Warwick-shire to Woster-shire,
from thence to Stafford-shire,
Thinking ere this, all Westminstir
was over-turn’d with fire.
They made the world believe, they went
about a hunting match,
But for their spoyle and booty, meant
our Souls and lives to catch.
When first th’ad got, by force of Arms,
the Lady Elizabeths Grace,
Not doubting by their Popish charms;
her Conscience to deface:
And having blown away the King,
and royal Issue male,
They thought by Crowning her, to bring
her will in servile thrall.
Then had they in her name forth sent
good store of Proclamations,
Such as might fit with the intent
of their Imaginations.
Nor would they father by and by
the Plot, (though ’twere their own,)
But meant the infamy should lye
where it was quite unknown.
If you would know what kind of man,
they would have thus traduced,
Forsooth, it was the Puritan,
(so in their stile abused.)
Indeed they meant the Protestants,
should all be under guilt,
As if the blood of Popish Saints,
at once they would have spilt.
A Gull without all wit or sense
(what will not malice say?)
“The Wolfe can soon find a pretence,
“why the poor Lamb to slay.
No, no: it was the Jesuit,
and Priests of Popish faction,
That brought them to this hideous pit,
though they deny the action.
Our doctrine loyal is, and course,
like to our doctrine, loyal;
They teach, (and put no less in force)
to crush the Scepter royal,
Who so their Anti-christian Sect
will not their favour crown,
Let him be King, born or elect,
they’l seek to pull him down.
And if their strength be not enough,
to bring about the matter,
Then Dagger, Dag, Fig, Powder stuffe,
shall stab, shoot, poison, scatter.
Thus were their heads and hands at work,
our State to overthrow,
Supposing all the while to lurke,
under some faiter show.
But all this while they looked not
to God that view’d them well,
And layd all-ope their subtle Plot,
forg’d by the Devil of hell.
These privy works of wily men,
so long and close concealed,
By their own letter, hand, and pen,
were suddenly revealed.
The hole was searcht of crafty Cubs,
and then appeared plain,
The Wood, Stones, Iron, Gunpowder-tubs,
and all the powder-train.
At this Hell-mouth, with triple match,
(dark Lantern in his hand,)
Stood Fauxe in dead of night, to watch,
and comers to withstand.
His watching had but ill event,
when from our watchful King.
Those noble Patriots were sent,
to find the secret thing.
He was in Boots and best array,
(’twas fit it should be so,
Being to travail such a way,
as he least thought to goe.)
He was not vext so much about
his taking, or his shame,
As for his happe to be without,
when the Kings searchers came;
Else, he resolv’d, all void of grace,
(that might have made him quake.)
Them, and himself, with house and place,)
a ruinous heap to make.
About this time the hunting rout,
that were in Country mounted,
From Shire to Shire were hunted out,
and sturdily affronted.
Nor needed greater power rise
their mutinies to quaile;
The Sheriffes power did suffice
to fetch them to the Jayle.
They look’t that all where ere they post
should like and help the fact,
Their reckoning was without the host
for all abhorr’d their Act.
Yea, mark: the house that they were in
(as in a harbour sure,)
Might well convince them of their sin,
and practising impure.
For as their powder was too dry,
(wherein they put their trust,)
They saw it was but vanity,
to hope in fickle dust;
Which (touched with a sparke of fire,)
hurt them by sudden flash,
That were inflam’d with hot desire,
the highest Court to quash.
So their own powder did them tell,
to their own very face,
Their powder-workings were from Hell,
most barbarous and base.
One of them dreamed over-night,
he saw strange looks and antick;
Their morrow-faces in the light,
prov’d this no fancy frantick;
He dream’d, at the same time, and place,
he saw strange tottering steeple,
Which did presage the tottring case,
of this seduced people.
“They say our Churches are their own,
“our Bells, and Steeples tall,
“But, striving for possession,
“they caught a fearful fall.
“They builded Castles in the Sky,
“(no marvail if they waver,
“The bird may build her nest on high,
“(not high enough to save her.)
And here it may not be forgot,
Catesby himself was one,
(The first contriver of this Plot,)
their powder flasht upon-
In stead of whirling into Sky
our Parliament, their own
Roof (where they parl’d.) before their Eye.
into the Sky was blown.
And a great powder-bag, (entire,)
was blown up therewithal:
Which never taking any fire,
came down full in the fall.
To shew that God doth over-sway
both fire and powder strong,
And doth their strength hold or allay,
as he sees right or wrong
Suppose the fire had toucht the Train
Under the Parliament,
God could have made them both refrain
their natural extent.
Themselves were forc’t upon this sight,
Heavens-anger to confess,
And on bent knees (all in a fright)
their sorrows to express:
“As they, that found the Shepherds rod,
“their devellish fears to quell.
“All trembling at the hand of God
“from their presumption fell.
Thus all their hopes were overthrown,
and utterly confounded,
And Popish-hunters in their own
most cruel pit were pounded.
Catesby and Piercy, brethren sworn.
were caught and pierc’t together,
Back joyn’d to back, (and all forlorne,)
by one shot, reaching thither.
Two Wrights that with their open might,
against their King rebelled,
Of roisting Rebels had the right,
by Sword of Justice quelled.
Garnett‘s to Gallows guarded sure,
[Nor th’ straw miraculous,
Where Limnet drew his face demure.
sav’d him from dying thus.]
Digby did for their digging pay,
on Gibbit mounted up,
Two Winters went the self same way,
Keys dranke of this Cup.
Tresham had tred no other track,
if he had liv’d so long.
Grant had his grant, the Rebel-pack,
to end his life among.
Rookwood, that would not better look,
to hooks of bait-alluring,
Was fain like heavy doom to brook,
(with shame for ever during.)
Fauxe like a Fox was hanged high,
and Bates his strength abated:
“Those that in Treason joyne, must dye
“the death of Traitors hated.
“They’r dead, we live, even in their sight:
“they’r catcht, we scap’t away;
“What should have been their day, our night,
“is now their night, our day.
“Even as those three renowned ones,
“in furnace seven times fired,
“Were safe preserved, flesh and bones,
“skin, hair, and cloathes unseared:
“The smoak devouring at a lick
“all them (and all entire)
“Which in their malice were so quick,
“to cast them in the fire,
“And as when Daniel was thrown,
“into the Lyons den,
“They spared him; but flesh and bone
“all tore those wicked men.
“So when three Kingdomes with a blast,
“from Babels flaming pit;
“Were like to come to woful waste,
“before they dream’d of it:
“The Son of God (that in the mids
“of burning bush is dwelling)
“Sav’d us, and kept his tender kids
“from claws of Lions yelling.
“Nay, (as if this unto his Grace,
“had seem’d too small ••hing)
“He brought our foes into the place,
“where they vow’d us to bring.
Alas! if they had brought to pass,
the things they took in hand,
For Christ, the Pope, for Gospel Mass
had reigned in our Land.
And every where there had been rise,
Racks, halters, fire and stake,
Or privy dungeon deaths, by knife,
hunger, and poyson’d cake.
But God was pleas’d from bitter brunts,
of Antichristian thrall,
To save us, and to just accounts
those bloody men to call.
Never since world began was thought
Plot more abominable.
Never Deliverance was wrought,
more strange and admirable
Our King was wise by a word to see
their secret deep intent,
Wiser to seal that firm decree
in Court of Parliament,
That year by year, most solemn thanks
might to our God redound,
Who did the Popish power and pranks
so m•ghtily confound.
Here to insert, is not amiss,
another later doom,
Which did befal long after this
some Romists in a room,
Even for this end, that all the Land
more freshly might remember,
How God abhorr’d that Plot
on fifth day of November.
“For he is privy to the rotten
“frame of our thankless minds,
“And sees how all would be forgotten
“without some fresher signs;
May’t please you but to reckon by
Then will you say as much as I,
am here to Register.
IN the one thousand year of grace,
six hundred twenty three,
(Upon Novembers fifth it was)
some Papists did agree,
To meet upon a Garret-flowre
within Black-friers range,
Near which, the French Ambassadour
lodg’d, till this heavy change.
Two or three hundred thither flockt,
crowding with eager lust,
The room was full (the dore unlockt)
some to the stairs was thrust.
Who so repair unto the yard,
or garden where they went,
Of this sad doom and vesper-hard,
may see the monument.
For ’twas at Even-song that they met,
upon the Lords own day,
Which by his Ordinance is set,
to teach us in his way.
They came to hear Drury
from Babel thither sent,
Who in his Jesuit parrel drest,
did there his matter vent.
Before his Sermon, on his knees
at this chair feet he fell.
Which was rear’d up by some degrees,
that they might see him well.
There did he some short prayer mutter
as ‘t were an Ave-mary,
No vocal prayer did he utter,
(from us, perhaps to vary:)
But presently fell to his Text,
which was about the King;
Who pardon’d much to him, that vex
his mate for a small thing.
Out of which Text he wringed this,
as some (that heard him) say;
‘Twould goe with all such Souls amiss,
as from their sold do stray.
Because forsooth their Sacraments,
(as namely Penance doing)
To cancel, are the Instruments
what debts to God are owing.
He preached by an hour-glass,
(an Embleme very apt,
To shew how near the period was,
how life dy death intrapt.)
Before the sand had run its course,
his breath was to be gone,
He made some way to his discourse,
but went no farther on,
The hand of God with sudden rush,
upon the Chamber came,
And did the Jesuit all to crush,
I’th’ ruins of the same.
His Soul before that heav’nly King,
did answer for this action,
There learning best, what is the thing,
that yields him satisfaction.
This sure I am, unless he did
sole Christ his pleader make,
And Popish merits farewel bid,
he could not chuse but quake
With him well nigh an hundred more,
men, women, one and other,
By fall of beams, and upper flore,
were crushed in the smother.
So much o’th’ Garret-flore fell,
as was above the place.
Where Father Rediate had his Cell
and Papists went to Mass.
But all their massing would not serve
their Priest, or them at all;
“They that from Scripture Cannon swerve,
“must look at last to fall.
Alas! what shrieks follow’d their mirth,
what cryes most pittiful?
Like theirs, whom once the gaping Earth
into her womb did pull:
Or like the doleful noise of all
that worshipt Dagons block;
On whom the house did rush and fall,
whiles they did Sampson mock;
Or like that dismal cry and groane,
throughout the Egyptian coasts,
When, in one night each first born son,
was slain by th’ Lord of Hoasts;
Or like the Galilean moane,
when in sedition found,
The sacrificers saw their own
blood spilt upon the ground.
This sad disaster might enforce
a stony heart to melt.
Which they in superstitious course
strongly beguiled, felt.
“Secrets belong unto the Lord,
“this we may well proclaim,
“What lies be damned in his word,
“his works confute the same.
They went about to blaze abroad,
as if most cruelly,
Some of the Protestants by fraud,
had wrought their misery.
By secret drawing out of pin,
or sawing half asunder
Some of the Timber, that was in
the house to prop it under.
But this’s a vaile that Satan cast
before their eyes to blind them,
Thereby from sight of Judgement past,
and due remorse to wind them.
For plain it was, in strictest view,
that by the peoples press
And Sommeyrs mortazing undue,
they came to this distress.
And that Gods finger may appear,
more plainly, no foundation
Nor Wall did faile, but all entire
the seeld Roof kept his station.
“Oh then, that those which did escape,
“with feet out of the snare,
“Might learn no more to run or gape,
“after such Romish ware!
“And that we all might learn to flee
“from Babel and her dung,
“Lest for our filthiness we be,
“into her sorrows flung.
But to return whence I digrest,
(take the old stile or new,)
Novembers fifth must be confest,
worthy all lasting view.
A day that justly was assign’d
to the Almighties glory,
A day when all should call to mind,
the famous powder story
But this not all to God belongs,
nor do we praise him best,
By Sermons, Prayers, or loud Songs,
Bells, Bone-fires, or by Feast.
All these are good, but somewhat else
is of far better note;
When heart, and life, our Souls and selves,
to him are all devote.
God looked for’t that all Estates
should mend what was amiss,
That Truth and Judgement in our Gates,
should one another kiss.
But we, alas! did soon forgit
the mighty works of God,
Not growing better any whit
by shaking of the rod,
Nor by the wrack beyond the Sea
of Christian brotherhood;
Nor Banners that our foes display,
‘gainst Brittains royal blood;
Nor by the safe return again,
of our then royal-Prince,
From his great venture into Spain,
nor his deliv’rance since,
(When he was safe in falling down
by guard of Angels tended);
Nor his safe coming to the Crown,
rightly on him descended:
These works of God could not suffice
to draw us from our sinning,
But still we kept the hue and size,
we had at the beginning:
This stirred up the Lord of Hoasts,
to jealousie and rage,
And made him smite again our Coasts,
not sparing any Age.
IN the one thousand year of God,
six hundred twenty five,
Was sent the Pestilential rod,
our rocky hearts to rive.
In the chief City of the Realm,
it had the chiefest seat:
There like a Sea to overwhelm
pride that was grown so great;
Or like a fire to purge away,
the dross of hateful sin;
Or like a Trumpet thence to fray,
the sleep that Souls were in.
The Queen of Cityes wont to sit,
in Chair of highest state,
Now sate in dust and lowest pit,
all sad and desolate:
The highest Court of Parliament,
to Oxford did remove.
The Tearmers were to Redding sent,
their Titles there to prove.
Nor were the strangers strange alone,
to the infected City;
But her best lovers all were gone,
and left her without pitty.
I mean, the rich did flock away,
and bade her streets adieu,
Except the poor (which needs must stay)
there stayed but a few.
Nothing was heard but passing-bells,
and friends their friends lamenting,
Nothing but heavy doleful-knells.
(Death not at all relenting)
Nothing was seen but heaps of dead,
to feed the hungry grave;
Or others lying sick a bed,
(no way their life to save.)
Some looked pale, and some with pain,
were forc’t to rave and roare,
Some did the deadly marks sustain,
and some the deadly sore:
In one years space, or less then so,
(from time the Plague began)
To what a number did they grow,
that death grip’t in his span?
Sixty two thousand at the least,
Six hundred seventy seven,
Were made appear by deaths arrest,
before the God of Heaven.
Yea, do but from Junes second look
unto Decembers last,
Scarce shall you read in English-book
of like doom ever past.
Within this three months space alone,
as hath been duly counted,
Fifty three thousand ninety one,
by Bills report amounted.
In London and the Liberties,
(Six moe near Parishes add,)
All the forenamed clos’d their eyes,
and made their friends full sad.
More dy’d in this then former pest,
by th, heavy hand of God;
In thirteen weeks (to say the least)
Eleven thousand forty and odd.
Of all which summs, the greatest part
by death departed thence,
Were pierced through with fiery dart,
of raging Pestilence.
If within and without one City Walls,
were found of men such lack,
More then six myriades of Souls
brought to so heavy wrack:
Oh then what was the wrack and spoyle,
of all the Land beside,
In Cities and in Country soyle,
throughout the Kingdome wide?
Trading grew dead, and mony scant,
the rich doubting their state,
The poor were pinched sore with want,
all fear’d the dismal fate.
Men from their dwellings fled apace
where these night Arrows fell,
But picked Halberds in each place
were set them to repell.
The high wayes unfrequented were,
men feared all they met,
And many keeping home, were there
caught in this spreading net.
High time it was that when the Lord,
was thus to fury bent,
All of their sins, so much abhorr’d,
should speedily repent.
Our Royal King right humbly fell
before the King of Grace,
In mournful weeds, becoming well,
this sad and heavy case.
It pittyed him to see his sheep,
by flocks to fall away,
It made his very Soul to weep,
to see their quick decay,
Himself began, and then he made,
his Subjects all to fast.
(so long as plague shall last)
All other works, upon the day
to fasting set apart,
That all at once might weekly pray,
to God with broken heart.
Thus all at once pour’d out their groans,
to God in this restraint;
Filling both Heaven and Earth with moans,
and cryes of their complaint.
And God which ever keeps his word,
soon pittyed our woes,
Bidding the Angel sheath his Sword,
and slack his murdering blows.
When in one week of sickness wanne,
five thousan’ a hundred five,
Dy’d in the City, then began
the City to revive.
(Yet after this in six weeks space,
of Plague and Feavers sore,
There dyed in the foresaid place,
full seventeen thousand more.)
But oh! behold Gods mighty power:
to grave were carryed thence,
In twelve weeks, after this no more,
but one of Pestilence.
Even when the Plague was spread at length,
into the Cities heart,
Then did abate the raging strength,
and poyson of his dart.
“Right so the Jewish Church of old,
“For David‘s proud presumption,
“And for their own rebellions bold,
“fall’n in a quick consumption,
“Just when the Angel stretcht his hand,
“Jerusalem to stroy,
“It pleased God no more their Land,
“with sickness to annoy.
Yea mark; when those return’d again
that from the City fled,
And when the Country thick came in
to market, boord, and bed,
Who would have thought but by and by
the Plague should be renewed?
Yet did it still most quiet lye,
as in a corner mewed.
Never was heard of such a change;
’twas but few dayes before,
The sickness up and down did range,
scarce passing by a dore.
The very ayre it self might then
seem to be quite infected;
Now Churches, Streets, shops, houses, men,
all sure and safe protected.
The eyes which had not before seen,
the Cityes desolation,
Could scarce believe that there had been
such deadly visitation.
Six moneths are gone about at least,
since that great ebbe and fall;
Few all this while dy’d of the Pest,
and some weeks none at all.
Nor was the sickness driven out
alone from London City,
But in all Countries round about,
was shewed the like pitty.
For though some sparkles here and there,
to awe us yet remain,
Yet little breaks out any where,
to burn us up again.
Even in our Town (so far remote)
when this dismal disease,
On place, and house, and man of note,
most dangerously did seaze:
When Town and Country were afraid,
it would have further spred,
This deadly plague with dead was laid,
as in a resting bed,
(And there it should have rested still,
as many weeks it did,
If men had not their doings-ill
with false pretences hid.)
As for this Parish (thanks to God,
by whom the lot is cast)
To this day felt this heavy rod,
not one from first to last.
Cry of our sins and grace abus’d,
did well deserve the worst,
But God to hear that cry refus’d,
(else had we been the first:
Now what may be the Lords intent,
it is not hard to ghess,
Even this, that we might all repent,
and his free grace confess.
COnfess we all before the Lord,
his grace and mercy then,
And shew his Acts with one accord,
before the sons of men.
In presence of his holy ones,
praise him with joy and fear,
Who doth revive our withered bones,
and light from darkness rear.
Man, Woman, child, both old and yongue,
rich, poor, the low and high,
Laud and extol with heart and tongue,
the highest Majesty.
Ye blessed Angels honour him,
and all the heavenly band,
Ye birds that flye, and fish that swim,
and cattel of the Land,
Let every City, Shire, and Town,
Each Church, and house, and Soul,
With thankful pen write his renowne
in everlasting roule.
Let all that lives confess his grace,
that saves their life and fame.
Let none by wicked life deface,
the glory of his name.
And thou my Soul remember well,
the kindness of the Lord,
Cease not with thankful lips to tell,
the trueness of his word;
Who gave thee pardon of thy sin,
and kept thee from the smart,
(For all the danger thou wert in)
of the infectious dart.
THou Lord which from the Spanish yoke,
and from the powder blast,
And from that former sickness stroak,
and from this newly past,
Hast saved us and ours, and thine,
so many as survive,
Oh do not of thy Grace divine
our feeble Souls deprive.
For we alas, are like to fall
into the same excess,
If to thy works thy grace withal,
come not to work redress,
So are we wedded to the toyes,
of our own hearts devising.
That we neglect the heav’nly joyes,
from thy pure wayes arising.
(Even when the scourge was on our back,
how few their life amended?
Our mending then must needs be slack,
when once the Plague is ended.)
Nor Navy, nor the powder Plot,
nor frightful noise of war,
Nor roaring of the Cannon shot.
nor all the Plagues that are,
Shall ought prevail, nor yet our strange
Deliverance from all,
Unless thy holy Spirit change,
and draw our hearts withal:
Then draw us Lord immediately,
and we shall follow thee,
And make us such effectually
as thou wouldst have us be:
So need we not to fear t•
Nor Pope, nor Spaine, nor Hell
For thou shalt ever e••l work,
Reveal, defeat, and quell.
No sickness pestilential
Shall smite our Tabernacle;
Or if there do, thy mercy shall
Be our safe Rec•ptacle.
Lord sa•e thy Church, our King and State,
Lord purge out all our dross,
And such as doth Gospel Late,
Infatuate and •ross
Lord bless the Parliamental Court,
(Vpper and lower House,)
And when to Counsel they resort,
In them remember us.
From King that sits upon the Throne,
To beggar in the Street:
Let all their by-past sins bemoane
Before thy mercy feet;
That we and our Posterity,
Safe-hid under thy wing,
May ever of thy 〈◊〉,
And saving mercy sing.