[Seventh paper from the commissioners sent to the king concerning an answer to their previous paper]

May it please your majesty,

Having for a long time waited your majesty's leisure for an answer to the humble desires of the parliament of your kingdom of Scotland, which we have in their name tendered to your majesty, and having received no answer or the least satisfaction to any of them, in discharge of our duty to your majesty we cannot but show that both your affairs and your distracted kingdoms are exposed to exceedingly great prejudice by the loss of so much precious time, which (in our humble opinion) might have been much better improved for the advantage of both. And by your majesty's intended removal hence and our necessity to return, we are so straitened with time that we cannot forbear any longer to renew our humble and earnest request for a speedy and favourable answer, whereby your majesty has a fair occasion (if embraced) at once to make both yourself and people happy. And, on the contrary, the great danger and irreparable loss will inevitably ensue upon further delaying or refusing to give satisfaction to so just and reasonable desires is obvious to any impartial eye, so that if now, when by the power and prevalence of sectaries and their army in England that kingdom is brought under foot and almost lost, and when Ireland is in very great distractions, your majesty shall not speedily and heartily satisfy the desires of your majesty's kingdom of Scotland, especially concerning religion and the covenant (which is the strongest bond to tie subjects to their king), it will weaken the hands of all those who love religion and monarchical government in England, and wholly discourage and disable Scotland to do for your majesty. By that means also your enemies will be encouraged and strengthened to prosecute their wicked designs, and your good people in England will be forced to couch under the burden and submit to the yoke, despairing of any means of relief or deliverance. We entreat your majesty to remember that opportunity once lost cannot be regained, the neglect and not taking hold whereof when so frequently offered has been the chief cause of the troubles of your royal family, and has (to our unspeakable grief) proven sad and fatal at last. We are confident that your majesty rightly pondering and laying these things to heart will in the entry of your reign so much cherish the hopeful expectation of your loyal people as that they may at length look for the wished ends of the long continued troubles and may live a comfortable and quiet life under the shadow of your majesty's prosperous and happy government.

Signed by the commissioners of parliament, 17/27 May 1649

  1. NLS. L.C.958 (40). Contained in The Proceedings of the commissioners of the church and kingdome of Scotland with his majestie at the Hague, and the papers interchanged betwixt his Majestie and them, as they were reported in Parliament and the General Assembly, 11-12. Back