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Status of the Jews in England after the Re-Settlement

Lucien Wolf

<plain_text><page sequence="1">STATUS OF THE JEWS IN ENGLAND AFTER THE RESETTLEMENT. By LUCIEN WOLF. The law of nearly every civilised country recognises two forms of status, a political status or national character, in virtue of which an individual becomes a citizen or subject of a particular State, and at once entitled to its protection and liable to the obligations incident to allegiance; and a civil status, in virtue of which he becomes clothed with certain municipal rights and duties. Jews, as such, have no political status at all. They must have national character, and they may have muni? cipal status, the extent of their rights and duties as nationals depending on the municipal law. There is, I believe, only one exception in the civilised world to this legal principle, and that is in Roumania, where by an anomaly which has been severely criticised by the eminent Jurist, Bluntschli, the Jews are perpetual aliens, without being nationals of any other country.1 It is not at all inconceivable that circumstances might arise under which this oppressive anomaly might be a positive advantage to Roumanian Jews. Let us suppose that a state of war existed between Great Britain and Roumania, and that such was the exasperation of the British public that orders were given to confiscate the property of all the Roumanians living in this country. A good many of our friends would find themselves exceedingly embarrassed by such an order. What would they do ? They would probably plead that they were Jews, and there can be little doubt that this defence would spare them any further trouble, seeing that as Jews they forfeit all political status derivable from the locality of their birth. I mention this 1 Bluntschli: "The Legal Status of the Jews in Roumania(1879). See also Roumanian Bulletin, June 2, 1902. VOL. IV. 177</page><page sequence="2">178 STATUS OF THE JEWS IN ENGLAND hypothesis because, as a matter of fact, it is caique on an incident in our own history by which what we call the " Re-settlement" of the Jews in England was largely facilitated, and which fixes for us the status of the men who took part in that movement. I have already related the story to the Jewish Historical Society at considerable length, but it is necessary to recapitulate the leading facts in connection with this paper. In 1655, when Menasseh ben Israel paid his visit to London, there was already living in this city a community of Spanish and Portuguese Marranos or Crypto-Jews. Their status was of course clear. Spanish or Portuguese subjects by birth, they enjoyed all the privileges and immunities secured to merchant strangers by Parlia? mentary and Municipal enactment and under the general safe-conduct of Magna Charta. This quality, however, had its disadvantages, which became perilously apparent when towards the end of 1655 Cromwell found himself involved in war with Spain as a result of his attack on St. Domingo. In March 1656 a proclamation was issued declaring all Spanish moneys, merchandise, and shipping to be lawful prize, and an information was laid against one of the richest of the Marranos, Antonio Rodrigues Robles, whose goods and ships were thereupon seized. The whole of the little Crypto-Jewish community was endangered by this step. To save themselves they resolved to throw off their disguise and claim their Hebrew nationality in ex? tinction of their Spanish allegiance.1 The validity of this claim may well be doubted. As Jews, the Marranos were none the less Spaniards. Indeed, their native land, so far from renouncing them, was only too anxious to assert its privilege of receiving them, with a view to the correction of their religious errors. But this objection would have weighed little with Cromwell. The war on which he had entered was essentially a; religious war on behalf of Protestantism against Popery and intoler? ance. To him Spain was Antichrist and the Inquisition the Harlot of Babylon. Moreover, he was personally well disposed to the Jews, and had encouraged Menasseh ben Israel in his mission. Under these circumstances it is scarcely surprising that the authorities 1 Wolf: "Menasseh ben Israel's Mission to Oliver Cromwell," pp. lx.-lxvi.</page><page sequence="3">AFTER THE RE-SETTLEMENT. 179 virtually accepted Robles's plea, and ordered the discharge of the warrants issued against him. This was not a judicial decision, for questions of confiscation in war-time belong to the Executive, but it had the effect of creating a curious legal anomaly. In virtue of it a community was practically recognised in the country, without political or municipal status. Its members were not aliens, because their allegiance to the land of their birth was ignored. They were not denizens, for only one of them, Antonio Fernandez Carvajal, had been endenizened as an exceptional favour, and they were certainly not natural-born subjects. What were they then ? They were simply Jews. I have already pointed out that in the present state of the law Jews as such have no political status. Two and a half centuries ago this principle was, of course, not so well established as it is to-day. The Continent of Europe was dotted with ancient Jewish communities, the members of which lived under special laws, which in some cases amounted almost to a denial of their national character so far as the lands of their birth were concerned. This was not the case in England. Here Jews had been unknown in their religious capa? city for three hundred and sixty-five years, and the only legislation which applied to them dated back to before the expulsion in 1290. The first question then which arose in this country, when it became known that a colony of Jews was settled within its boundaries, was whether the ancient legislation was still in force. Some of the opponents of the Jews declared that they had no business in this country at all, as the decree of banishment issued by Edward I. was still uncancelled ; while others, in a more conciliatory spirit, argued, as an alternative, that if they were allowed to remain they should at least be submitted to their ancient disabilities. The question whether the decree of banishment was still in force had been decided on the highest legal authority at the Whitehall Conferences of December 1655 when the Lord Chief Justice Glyn and the Lord Chief Baron Steel had declared that: " There was no law which forbade the Jews returning into England." The view of the Judges was, no doubt, that the decree of banishment was not a Parliamentary Statute, and that it ceased to have effect on the death of the Sovereign who had issued it. The other question never received any legal solution at all.</page><page sequence="4">180 STATUS OF THE JEWS IN ENGLAND It is, however, very improbable that the advocates of the revival of the Pre-Expulsion disabilities would have been able to make out their case had they been afforded a judicial opportunity. The whole con? ception of the Jewish status under the Norman and Angevin Kings rested on Villeinage. They were the chattels or bondsmen of the King, and by this relationship all their disabilities were governed. In 1655 Villeinage no longer existed in England. Its last traces had disappeared in the reign of Queen Elizabeth. It is consequently very doubtful whether the revival of laws re-establishing so retrograde a principle would have been sanctioned by the Courts or tolerated by Parliament. If, however, there were no specific laws by which the status of Jew was recognised or governed, the position of individuals claiming to reside in England by virtue of this status was none the less perilous. That there was no law forbidding their coming into this country was really a barren advantage. Once in the land they found themselves confronted by a policy which, if rigorously enforced, would have speedily compelled them to seek some other domicile. Religious error was still a crime in England. The statutes of Edward VI. and Elizabeth, by which attendance at church was made obligatory, and meetings for Nonconformist worship were punishable by imprisonment, had, it is true, been repealed by the Long Parliament in 1657, but the revival of similar laws against the Jew was by no means improbable.1 So far as trading was concerned there was obviously no room in the severely organised corporations for people who were neither aliens, denizens, nor natives, while they were certainly heretics. Nevertheless the Jews resided, worshipped, and traded in the country unmolested until the end of the Protectorate, enjoying advantages which were not extended even to some categories of Christians, such as Roman Catholics and Quakers. The explanation of this strange anomaly is very simple. They lived under the personal protection of Cromwell. We have proof of three privileges having been granted to them by the Protector, apart from their right of incoming recognised by the Judges at the Whitehall Con? ferences. During the negotiations wTith Menasseh ben Israel he gave 1 Wolf : "Menasseh ben Israel's Mission to Oliver Cromwell," p. lviii.</page><page sequence="5">AFTER THE RE-SETTLEMENT. 181 them permission to hold divine service according to the Jewish ritual in their private houses, and he allowed them to acquire and use a burial-ground of their own. At a later date he conferred on them the privilege " of a free cohabitation and trade in these dominions." Thus until 1659, although they had no political status, they were to all intents and purposes as free as natives, while in religious matters their liberty was even less restricted. The best proof of their absolute freedom as traders is afforded by the fact that as early as 1657 they were admitted as brokers on the City Exchange, although they were not, and could not, be freemen, and no non freemen could by the City regulations be brokers.1 It must not be imagined that this state of things was willingly acquiesced in either by the City Fathers or the general public. On the contrary, it gave a great deal of dissatisfaction, which was only silent while the strong arm of the Protector was extended over the intruders. As soon as Cromwell died, this dissatisfaction became violently articulate. A petition was presented to Richard Cromwell, demanding the expulsion of the Jews and the confiscation of their property.2 At the same time, Thomas Yiolet, the notorious informer and pamphleteer, made a collection of documents bearing on the illegality of the Jewish settlement, which he submitted to Mr. Justice Tyril, together with an application that the law should be set in motion against the intrusive community. The Justice shrewdly suggested to Mr. Violet that in the then confused political situation he would do well to take no action. It would, he opined, be only prudent to await the establishment of a stable Government before moving in so serious a matter.3 As we shall presently see, the Justice was wise in his generation. A few months later Charles II. re-entered London, and the Commonwealth was at an end. Naturally, everybody looked to the new regime to redress the particular grievance or grievances he harboured against " the late execrable Usurper," as it became the fashion to call him. The anti-Jewish party was particularly prompt 1 Ibid, and pp. lxvi.-lxviii. See also Document No. 2 appended to this paper. 2 Document No. 1. 3 Violet: "A Petition against the Jews " (1661), pp. 7, 8.</page><page sequence="6">182 STATUS OF THE JEWS IN ENGLAND in its representations to the new monarch. Scarcely had Charles arrived in the Metropolis when the Lord Mayor and Aldermen of the City of London presented to him a humble petition, bitterly com? plaining of the action of Cromwell in permitting the Jews to re-enter the land, and asking the King "to cause the former laws made against the Jews to be put in execution, and to recommend to your two Houses of Parliament to enact such new ones for the expulsion of all professed Jews out of your Majesty's dominions, and to bar the door after them with such provisions and penalties as in your Majesty's wisdom should be found most agreeable to the benefits of religion, the honour of your Majesty, and the good and welfare of your subjects." The long pent-up wrath of the city found full expression in this petition, which must be read in its entirety to be appreciated.1 Mr. Thomas Violet followed with another petition, which was equally violent. He declared that by law it was a felony for any Jew to be found in England. He did not, however, propose their expulsion, as he did not think that would be the best means of turning them to profitable account. His suggestion to the merry but impecunious monarch was that in the first place all the estates and properties of the Jews should be confiscated, and then that they should be cast into prison and kept there until ransomed by their wealthy brethren abroad.2 A third petition, also by Violet,3 and dated 30th November 1660, is preserved among the Domestic State Papers. It runs very much on the lines of the City petition, but it admits the hypothesis of Jews residing in England under license, provided they were heavily taxed. No direct reply to any of these petitions is recorded. The views of Charles II. are, however, no mystery. The Jews of Amsterdam, and even some of the wealthier Jews in London, had assisted him during his exile, especially the great family of Mendez da Costa and Augustin Coronel, the agent for Portugal and a personal friend of Monk. Shortly after the mission of Menasseh ben Israel to Cromwell 1 Document No. 2. 2 Violet: " A Petition against the Jews." Although dated 1661, this petition was really issued on Dec. 16, 1600 (see p. 8). 3 See Document No. 3. For acknowledgment of authorship see Violet, " A Petition, &amp;c.," p. 8.</page><page sequence="7">AFTER THE RE-SETTLEMENT. 183 these Jews had approached Charles II. at Bruges and had assured him that they had neither assisted nor approved the Rabbi's negotia? tions. Thereupon General Middleton had been instructed to treat with them for their support to the Royalist cause, and Charles had promised that " they shall find, when God shall restore his Majesty, that he would extend that protection to them which they could reasonably expect, and abate that rigour of the law which was against them in his several dominions."1 That these negotiations were not without practical result is beyond question. The Da Costas and Coronels, as well as several other Jewish families, were exceedingly active on Charles's behalf during the last few years of the Common? wealth, and one of the first things that Charles himself did when he arrived by his own was to instruct the Lords in Council to present an order to the House of Commons recommending the House to take measures for the protection of the Jews.2 There is no record of any such measures having been adopted, but Charles extended to the Jews precisely the same protection as they had enjoyed under Cromwell. In 1664, when an attempt was made by the Earl of Berkshire and Mr. Ricaut to obtain their expulsion, the King in Council disavowed the scheme and assured the Jews " that they may promise themselves the effects of the same favour as formerly they have had, so long as they demean themselves peaceably and quietly with due obedience to his Majesty's laws and without scandal to his Government."3 The King, moreover, knighted Coronel soon after his Restoration.4 The status of the Jews did not, however, remain the same under Charles II. as it had been under the Commonwealth. The anomalous condition of being neither aliens, denizens, nor natives gradually disappeared. In the first place Charles, unlike Cromwell, was generous in his denizations, and very soon after his accession to the 1 Brit. Mus. Add. MSS. 4106, p. 253. Firth: "Scotland and the Protec? torate," pp. 342, 343. See p. 197 below. 2 Commons Journals, Vol. VIII. p. 209, Dec. 17, 1660. 3 S. P. Dom., Entry Book No. 18, pp. 78, 79. (The precise significance of this grant has been treated by the present writer in a separate paper entitled, "The Jewry of the Restoration," which will appear in the next volume of Transactions.) 4 Le Neve : "Pedigrees of Knights," p. 145.</page><page sequence="8">184 STATUS OF THE JEWS IN ENGLAND throne all the wealthy Jews received patents. Then a generation of native-born Jews grew up, and they were, of course, Englishmen in every respect except that, like Roman Catholics, though in a diminished degree, they laboured under certain religious disabilities. Finally, with the disappearance of the anomalous political circum? stances of 1655, the foreign Jewish new-comers again assumed the status of merchant strangers. They still, however, required the direct protection of the Crown in the profession and public observance of their religion. On two occasions?in 1673 and 1685?they had occasion to appeal to the Privy Council against attempted prosecutions, and on both these occasions the assurance of Charles II. wTas renewed and confirmed. William III. rebelled once or twice against this arrangement, which seemed to his penurious mind to withdraw from him, unnecessarily, a source of extra revenue. In 1689 he made an attempt to levy a special tax on the Jews, and, when this did not succeed, he tried to force a loan from them. Ultimately he managed, in defiance of the law, to secure their subjection to alien duties, but this measure was speedily revoked.1 The Jews continued to enjoy the implied protection of the Crown until, by the abolition of all civil and religious disabilities, they required that protection no longer. One curious result of the anomalous legal position of the Jews at this early period was that several attempts were made to find them a legal status in the country by establishing the Ghetto system which prevailed on the Continent. Menasseh ben Israel himself asked that the Jews might enjoy a sort of judicial autonomy within their own community,2 and his brother-in-law, David Abrabanell Dormido, assuming that the Re-settlement would only be permitted on Ghetto principles, applied to Cromwell for the post of Consul of his nation.3 Shortly after the accession of Charles II., a Jew of Prague, named Jacob Azrik, proposed to the King that he should be permitted to farm special taxes to be levied on the Jews, and offered to guarantee a fixed sum for the first and second years.4 The most serious attempt was, however, made in 1680, when the Government was in dire straits 1 Cal. State Papers, Dom., 1689-1690, pp. 318, 374, 453. 2 Wolf: "Menasseh ben Israel's Mission," p. lxxxiii. 3 Transactions Jew. Bist. Soc, vol. iii. p. 90. 4 Hist. MSS. Com., Rep. 11, App. VII. p. 38.</page><page sequence="9">AFTER THE RE-SETTLEMENT. 185 for money. The then Bishop of Lincoln and Sir Peter Pett drew up a scheme by which the Jews were to have been civilly isolated, somewhat under the pre-Expulsion system, but with larger privileges. They were to have had a special Justiciary who would manage their special taxes and control their relations with the Crown. Lord Anglesey was interested in the project, and he brought it before the King, with whom he discussed it at two audiences. It was proposed that Sir Peter Pett should be the first Justiciary of the Jews. The scheme was ultimately submitted to the Privy Council, but powerful influences seem to have been brought against it, and it was happily dropped.1 It is a great mercy that the Ghetto system, or any other system of isolating the Jews, was never introduced into this country. To that fact may, I think, be attributed the difficulty which anti-Semitism has found in establishing itself in England. Abroad, the Jews were still in the Ghettos when they were emancipated, and when they entered on their new privileges they were still a strange race, pre? senting many features in strong contrast to the national life, and which seemed to stamp them more or less as aliens. In these circumstances fusion has been slow. In England this process has been reversed. From the beginning, the Jews mixed freely with their Christian fellow-citizens, and in all the relations of civil life soon assimilated themselves with the national character. Their social emancipation, in fact, preceded their political emancipation, and when the latter was secured it only set the official stamp on a national character already acquired and universally recognised. 1 Document No. 4.</page><page sequence="10">18? STATUS OF THE JEWS IN ENGLAND DOCUMENTS I [Richard Baker.] The Marchants Humble Petition and Remonstrance, To his late Highnesse. . . . A general remedy proposed for the restauration of the Trade. All most humbly submitted to his Highnesse and the most Honorable Houses of Parliament's consideration. (London, 1659.) P. 9. " We have now taught the Spaniards to be marchants, who have a great concealed trade in England, consigning their goods to confident persons and to Jews." P. 17. [Remedies.] "Ninthly, To expell or banish the Jews, and pre? sently to have an exact account made up of the value of the native com? modities they have exported and what those they have imported amount unto, and if it be not thought fit that all the over value shall be paid unto the state, yet that they be fined for extracting the wealth of these Nations: and that the like inquisition be made in some measure with other strangers." II Guildhall Archives, Remembrancer, vol. ix. No. 44, fols. 1-18. To the Kings most Excellent Ma** The Humble Petition of the Lord Maior and Aldren of the Citty of London. Sheweth That yor Peticonrs being as sensible of ye genrall decay of Trade, as of yor Matys Royall zeale to pmote ye interest thereof, have thought it their duty to lay before yor Maty ye unhappy cause of that sad effect whch they humbly conceive to be ye exportacon of yr wollen and other native comodityes by ye hands of such strangrs both Christians and Jews who live here obscurely, free from ffamily expences and charge of Publique offices and by the assistance of drawrs of Cloth, Packers Clothworkers &amp; others prtended English mchts defraude yor Matie and yor Kingdome of that fforraigne Trade wch can more then sufficiently be supplyed by yor Maties native subjects. And because those intrudrs know yt ye best prvencon of yfc mischeif, hath beene by incor? porating ye Trade to yor native subjects undr Regulacon of yor Maties Chres. they are now attempting to destroy ye sd. Governmt In wch should they prvayl ye English navigacon &amp; succession of English mchts will dayly more &amp; more decay both wch by ye favour &amp; Authority of yor Maty may be service? able to ye Honnr of yr Maties Crowne abroad and Revenue at home as they have formerly beene eminently to yor Maties Royall Predecessors.</page><page sequence="11">AFTER THE RE-SETTLEMENT. 187 And in that grand Complicacon of mischeifs brought on yor Maties good subjects, by ye corrupt interest of the late usurper ye admission of Jews to a free cohabition &amp; trade in these dominions was found felt to be a most heavy presure on yor Peticon18. But that wretched tyrant knowing that all unjust acquests are to be kept by ye same wicked meanes by wch they were first attained And considering y* none would bee more ready Instrumts in con? tinuing ye exclusion of yor Sacred Maty (whom he knew to be both in deed &amp; Title The Defender of the Christian ffaith) then those whoo were pfessed enemyes to Christianitye &amp; thinking it a serviceable expedient to weaken ye hands of yor Ma*?'8 Loyall &amp; orthodox subjects from endeavouring their delvanc by yor Mafcy s blessed Restoracon to divert ye trade of London into such hands as had no part in yor Matie by any relacon of birth or affeccon he resolved as subtilly as wickedly to let in that swarme of Locusts for a plague .upon us whoe are now dayly multiplyed by ye accesson of whole ffamilyes of them from all parts (as if yor Maties dominions were condemned to be ye Sinck into wch yfc scum of Mankind should be emptyed for a plague to yor subjects) from wch most if not all hereditary Monarchies of Christendome are secured &amp; agfc wch yor petrs doe humbly hope yt yor Matie will pvide an antidote wn yor Maty shall have considered how prejudiciall most Jewes are 1st In ye Concerne of Religion by ye open sc?dall y* must be contracted in prmitting their publique Assemblies for their superstitious wrp. in pfessed opposicon to ye Christian ffaith and ye carrupting of ignorant &amp; indigent natives whome they have &amp; will worke upon to become their unhappy pselites nor can yor Petrs conceive yfc ye hopes of converting yfc obstinate genacon is now a Seasonable Argumfc for their admission seeing yfc all of them who are come from any part where Judaisme was not tolerated did there dissemble ymselves Christians &amp; came hither for Libty to pfesse &amp; practise ye judaicall superstition. 2dly As to ye interest of yor Mafcies Crowne &amp; dignity yor Petrs doe beg leave to offer, That those Jewes having no other relacon to these Kingdomes but their psent libty in ordr to ye gaining of money and haveing their kindred &amp; friends disperst in all ye Kingdomes &amp; States of Christendome undr a disguise of Christians and many of them crept into publique employm* undr ye neighbour Princes &amp; States, those Jewes doubt lesse here will by their correspondency wth their said brethren discover ye occurrences of yor Maties affaires, as farr as they can to ye prejudice of yor Matys just &amp; Honble designes especially if it may serve those fforraigne States into whose dominions they have a free &amp; sure retreate wn they can doe no further mischeif here. 3dly as to ye Honr of ye nacons of yo1' Matys dominions, they have already debauched some necessitous ones of the weaker sex to ye abominable taint of ye English blood &amp; bringing on us ye infamy of a mixt nacon 4ly as to ye interest of trade yor Petrs already groaned undr ye wheele of their opprssion who are People y* make it a practise to deceive Christians &amp; are neur just but wn they canot be otherwise who neur</page><page sequence="12">188 STATUS OF THE JEWS IN ENGLAND employ a Christian to gaine a penny undr ym but wn none of their owne tribes can serve ym who have found ye way to buy or native manufactures on ye best termes to ship ym undr English disguise &amp; pstituted yor price of them in fforraigne pts &amp; raissed ye price of fforraigne Comodityes to ye great damage of ye Matyes subjects in all ye ports of ye Spanise &amp; Por tugall dominions so as if they be continued here that whole trade will be drayned from ye Englise to the irreparable losse of yr Matys native People &amp; yt not only by these subtle undrminings but by pure fraudes allsoe as appears by evry fresh &amp; sad experiences of sewall of ym whoe haveing cheated other Christians in fforraigne parts undr one name have assumed anothr &amp; betaken hither &amp; here by ye confedracy of their own sort raised ymselves a Reputacon so as to obtaine credit from yor Maty's subjects &amp; yn retired them? selves wth ye English estates to ye mine of many good ffamilies. Your Petrs therefore humbly pray, That yr Maty will be pleased to pserve those societyes ych are already erected by yor Maty's just authority &amp; prrogative &amp; to reduce those trades yfc are not yet associated into a Governmt by yor Maty s Charters in such wages as may not exclude any of yor native subjects from freedome of regulated trades nor leave any to be licentious &amp; yt yor Maty will be pleased to case ye former Lawes made agt Jewes to be put in execucon &amp; to recom? mend to yr two houses of Parliamfc to enact such new ones for ye expulcon of all pfessed Jewes out of yor Maty's dominions &amp; to barre ye dore after ym with such pvisions &amp; penaltys as in yor Matye's wisedome shalle be found most agreeable to ye safety of Religion ye honr of yr Maty &amp; ye good &amp; welfare of yr subjects. And your Peticionrs as in duty bound shall ever pray. Ill [S. P. Dom. Chas. IL, vol. xxi. p. 256.] To the Kings most excellent Matie. A most humble Remonstrance concerning the Iewes in and about London &amp; other cittyes Townes &amp; places in England and of their Con dicoS state &amp; Transacc?ns fitt (as conceived) to be revealed &amp; made knowne to you* sacred Matie. Most gracious So veraig ne When ye Jewes came first into England appeares not certainlie by any Historians ; but their introduccon into this your kingdome, may be deduced from William the Conqueror by reason noe mencon is made of them in any of the Brittish or Saxon Historyes, Councills, Synods, or Canons; But ye Jewes noe sooner transported and Settled in London grew (as observed by our Historyes) very insolent against ye Christians, as endeavouring to per</page><page sequence="13">AFTER THE RE-SETTLEMENT. 189 vert some of them by moneys to Iudaisme attempting to corrupt the Kinge himselfe by Guifts to side with them against the Clergie and to become one of their Sect, and entring into open Disputacons with the Clergie against the Christian faith to ye great feare of the Professours &amp; hazard of the Christian Religion, and may not this fall out to be the very practize of the Jewes now in England, to the Hazard of our Christian Religion, and seduccon of many simple, vnstable Soules in this vnsettled Apostatizinge Age, when not onlie the ignorant people but many great professors turne Atheists, Hereticks, Anabaptists, Seekers, Apostates, Blasphemers, Ranters, Quakers, Antiscripturists, and what not;? Sir it is to be observed how that the Nacofi of the Jewes were after their malicious crucifying of our Saviour made ye saddest spectacles of divine Justice &amp; humane miserie of all other NacoTis being for this their crying sinne quite extirpated out of their owne land almost totally deleted by ye sword, pestilence, famine carried away captives and dispersed like soe many Vagabonds over the face of the whole earth, And what Banishmts, punish? ments, OpposiccJris Restraints by penall Lawes Suppression of their Syna? gogues, &amp; Ceremonies, they have received in all ages from Christian Kings, Princes, Republickes, in most parts for their implacable malice &amp; Blasphemy against our Saviour Christians &amp; Christian Religion is fully related by Josephus &amp; divers other Authors ; And as concerning the Jewes being &amp; Condicoii in England, they, when they came first into it were vnder the respective kings protections and patronages where ever they Resided, for they were all only vnder him, and their persons estates reall and personall were his alone, And he could seize all their lands, houses, Rents, Annuityes, flees, Mortgages, debts, goods, chattells, gold, silver, and sell, Graunt Release and give them to whom, he pleased ; But the Jewes in time even from King William the Conqueror vnto King Edward the first by a prevayling Engine (called money) procured by Charters, writts, and proclamations from those Kings many large prive ledges protections, Immunityes, and freedoms, especially in ye beginninge of their Raignes And having noe sooner crept &amp; strud themselues into this Kingdome, but in time became very numerous and the most bitter inveterate profes'd enemies of Christ himselfe, Christians, and Christianity, such was their prsumpcon in England, that they Crucified in divers Cittyes &amp; places of this ISTacon1, many children (as the Historians relate,) and that corhonly on good ffriday &amp; the feast of Easter; But what punishmts were then in? flicted on them for those murders &amp; Insolencies is not found recorded; but Banishinge of some, and fining of others; And although the Jewes from the tyme of the Raigne of William the Conqueror to the Raigne of King Edward the first soe prvayled that they obtained many large priveledges, yett still they lived vnder vnsupportable ffines Taxes &amp; Tallages &amp; notwthstanding such their encllesse Taxes yett present lie they grew rich againe ;</page><page sequence="14">190 STATUS OF THE JEWS IN ENGLAND Soe numerous rich &amp; potent were ye Jewes in England that they had their Synagogues, Schools, preists, Presbiters, Comptrollers, &amp; many offices &amp; officers; soe exceeding execrable &amp; detestable were they to ye people in all places in England where they resided both for their Infidelity blasphe? mies Apostacyes, enmity to Christ and Christianity, Circumcisinge and Crusi fyinge Christian Children, Clipping and Coyninge of Money, ffalsifyinge of Charters, Extorcofr1, Brokage, Vsurie, ffrauds, Rapes, murders, fforgeryes, Violence, plunder, and Vnconscionable cut throate dealinge, That King Edward the first in the Eighteenth yeare of his Raigne (finding the great griveance of his loyall Subjects for the Jewes Insolencie against the Chris? tians) did by publique Edict of parliam* actually banish them all out of Engld" (except the Converts) by a sett prfixed day beyond all Contradiccofl, &amp; never to Returne againe ; And now may it please your most sacred Matie It being reported by ye Historians that ye first Country of Christendome whence the Jewes were expelled wthout hope of Returne was this our Country your Kingdom of EnghJ whence they were banished An0 1290 by King Edward the first, This their Banishmfc as by Historie Appeares was vpon severall good grounds; It was at ye speciall Instance &amp; Request of ye Cohions in two siidall parliamts, as an Intollerable Griveance &amp; oppression vnder which they then groaned; And the principall grounds of this their perpetuall Banishmfc was their Infidelity Vsury forgeries [of] Charters clipping &amp; falsifying of moneys &amp; other notorious Acts by wch they prjudiced ye King &amp; Kingdome and much Impoverished &amp; oppressed ye people; Their Banishm* was soe acceptable to ye people who oftimes pressed it in pliam* that they gave the King a fifteenth pb of their moveables to speede &amp; execute it, and it was done by the vnanimous desire Iudgim^ Edict &amp; decree both of the King &amp; his parliam* and it was totall and finall to them all never to returne into Engili againe, wch Edict &amp; decree though ye same may not now be found extant &amp; in ye parliamfc Rolls, nor in our printed Statutes, yet is it mencTmed by divers Authors &amp; in se?all Records ; And though the Jewes were soe totally Banished, as never to bee read? mitted againe yett how have they by little &amp; little &amp; by degrees crept &amp; stollen into England againe, &amp; together some as Jewes Aliens &amp; others as English are become of late exceeding numerous &amp; how they became soe is conceived to be by ye meanes of ye late Vsurper, who most apparently did protect &amp; countenance them in their affaires &amp; Ac cons ; Sr It is a funda? mentall Maxime in our Lawes and Law bookes y* Salus populi suprema Lex and it is another Maxime in our Law; Summa Ratio est quce p Religione facit Now ye Admission of ye Jewes into England and ye permission of them as well English as Aliens is, nor can bee thought to be any way con? sistent with the Welfare pfitt, wealth, safety of ye Church your Matie Realme subjects, people or Religion but will doubtlesse prove, an extraordinary damage</page><page sequence="15">AFTER THE RE-SETTLEMENT. 191 mischeife Greiveance &amp; disinherison to all, And truly ye Jewes who were soe long since by Judgm* Edict &amp; decree both of king &amp; parliam* for eur banished out of England, never since repealed or re?sed neither may nor (vnder pardon) cann by law be readmitted or reduced into Engf? againe, but by Comon Consent and act of parliamfc wch they (as tis hoped) will ne? be able to obtaine ; And as ye lives &amp; condicons of ye Jewes were heretofore in EngM soe will they who now inhabite here be (doubtlesse vppon inquirie) found to be as they were and that most griveous clippers Coyners washers &amp; falsifiers of moneys, Vsurers, Extortioners, Cozenors, Cheators Impostors in the world in all their Merchandizes &amp; Manufactors And vntill of late were never admitted free trading &amp; habitacofl in Engict by any of our lawes touching Alien Merchants &amp; Artificers free trading amongst vs, and that especially in the time and by ye Connivance of ye late Ysurper And moreover such of late hath bene ye prsumpcofl of ye Jewes that as ye Report hath gone &amp; soe doubtlesse vpon inquirie it will be discoifed that they have Circumcised Children sett vpp &amp; frequented Synagogues and have had &amp; still may have their schooles, preists, presbiters, &amp; ye like, yea, further they (as Countenanced by the said late Vsurper) endeavoured in his time (as fre? quently it was reported) to buy the famous Cathedrallj Church of Pauls to have made ym a Synagogue, as alsoe your most renowned Court of Whitehall for some Imploymfc. And now ye Jewes in generali as they are many in number, soe are they for ye most pte exceeding rich potent &amp; oppressive especially such as doe inhabite in &amp; about your Citty of London many of ym being great Merchants &amp; ye rest for ye most p* greate Artificers, Tradesmen and dealers and they by reason of their potency power &amp; riches doe subdue keepe vnder and oppresse &amp; take away much Trade trafhck &amp; Imploym* from your poore &amp; most loyall free borne subjects to whom they are become most execrable &amp; detestable; ffor Reformacofi of whom &amp; for ye subduing of wch, May it please your Matie to take it into you1* Consideracof? That as ye Kings in former ages imposed ffynes, Taxes, Tallages, Ransoms, and made the Jewes pay them sevTall great sums of money and that all their reall &amp; psonall estates were wholly at ye Kings disposall and this by reason of their prsumpcofi to Reside, inhabite, Trade &amp; Trafhque here contrary to ye law &amp; without Licence; Soe &amp; in ye like manner may your sacred Matie by ye lawes of ye Nacori doubtlesse Impose, &amp; Compell the Jewes now here inhabiting wthin you1' dominion of England, to pay what fnnes, Taxes, Tallages, Ransoms &amp; imposicons you please, and inforce them to pay vnto your Majesty what sums you please to require of ym, and further doubtlesse if you please to seize &amp; take into your power both their reall &amp; psonall estates, yea and banish them for such their still presumptuous residing &amp; trading heere without your Maties speciall Licence ;</page><page sequence="16">192 STATUS OF THE JEWS IN ENGLAND And for an expedient &amp; to th'end your Matie would be pleased to reduce &amp; submitt them to your power; your Matie (vnder pardon) may bee advized to issue out Oomissions in ye nature of Inquisicons, and thereby impowre some few of your discreete loyall Subjects to inquire about ye number of ye Jewes in generali, and of their deportmts, estates, misdemeanors, Con dicons, lives &amp; Conversacohs, oppressions, affaires &amp; Transaccons, and vnder what priveledges &amp; by what authority power or licence they doe here within your dominion inhabite Comerce, Trade &amp; Trafhcke &amp; the like, by which meanes or by some such overtures &amp; waies your Matie may be assertain'd &amp; satisfied of all their Transaccons and hereby your Matie may doubtlesse most legally ffine, Taxe, impose &amp; Compell them to pay what sums of money to your Matie as you please ; And seize vpon their psons, estates reall andpsonall, and alsoe Banish them if your Matie shall soe advize, and for this their presumptuous living &amp; inhabiting here without your Maties leave and licence there may bee raised by way of advance to your Matie a great sume of money which by reason of their number &amp; wealth, will but very little diminish or Impoverish ym; and hereby a way may alsoe be found out how to free many of your poore loyall subjects, from the Jewes oppression &amp; procure vnto them a free trade and comerce And your merchants &amp; others (if the Jewes might bee subdued) (at wch they would doubtlesse much rejoyce,) would injoy ye happines of most plentifull comerce &amp; Trading, All which neverthelesse is in All humility loyalty &amp; submission left vnto your most sacred Maties Judgm* &amp; consideracofi ; IV. [All Souls Coll. MS. 239, fol. 423.] Mr. Secretary, Hauing had occasion not long agoe to discourse with his majesty the charter of the Jewes and their desire of his majesties giueing them some such priuiledges as their Ancestors here enioyed, on their makeing fitting acknowledgments to the Crowne as their Ancestors did: doe give you the trouble of this by our friend Sr peter Pett. And being shortly to goe into the Country, haue desired him to wait on you, with the seuerall papers and copyes of Records he hath which may be of vse for the King's seruice in this matter. He tells me that the Jewes were willing in Cromwell's time to haue given him a large summe of money for their readmittance, and that without a Charter from him first obtained they would not then prsesume to come here: but within these late yeares, meerely vpon the clemency of the King and the Candour of his English subiects they haue adventured to settle here, where they haue had both freedome of trade, and as I heare of their Synagogue. I referre you to Sr peter pett for an Account of the occasion</page><page sequence="17">AFTER THE RE-SETTLEMENT. 193 of my speaking to the King about this affaire, and on the whole matter it may perhaps be aduiseable on his majesties behalfe that some one may have a commission from his majesty to be the Justitiar]} of the Jewes, or at least a promise from his majesty for that place, if his majesty shall thinke fitt to reestablish it: And such person may by vertue either of such commission or promise from his majesty as aforesaid, send to some of the most consider? able and learned persons of the Jewish nation here, to meet and discourse with him, and receiue from him an account of the state of the fact of the former concessions of the Crowne to them and of their retributions to the Crowne, And he to receiue from them an Account of what priuiledges and immunityes they now propose to haue and what Returnes to the crowne they are now willing to make: And because Sr peter pett has long studdyed the points necessarily relating to the Jewes reestablishment here and has writt learnedly of the same and engaged the Bishop of Lincolne formerly to doe so, and hath as he tells me prepared another large discourse about what priuiledges the King may grant them, both by the law of nations and the land, I recommend him as the fittest person in my opinion for that place, considering further that he hath been hitherto vnrewarded by his majesty for the many yeares seruices he did his majesty in Ireland, and as since imployed by him in the Admiralty of England in his concerne of the Genoa ship, and likewise for that if his majesty shall be any way considerably a gainer by the reestablishment of the Jewes, the pro? position, about ye same will some way entitle him, to an expectance of his majesties fauour therein. You may easily imagine that in this time of his majesties affaires for money being so pressing I shall not thinke of the reestablishing any office to the increasing of his majesties charge, but doe only suppose the reestablishment of this needfull when the crowne shall thereby have some yearly supply from them, and then this office may be maintayned by some allowance out of it. Of the further vsefullnes of that office, relating either to the Crowne or that nation I referre you to him to giue you satisfaction either from our historyes or copyes of Records, if his proposalls herein take effect, and Remayne, Sr; Your affectionate friend to serue you, Anglesey. Drury lane Aug. 6, 1680. [Endorsed "a Lettre from my Lord of Anglesey touching the Jews."] VOL. IV.</page></plain_text>