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So Cromwell, with deep oaths and vows,
Swore all the commons out o'th' house;
Vow'd that the red-coats would disband,
Ay marry would they, at their command;
And trolld them on, and swore, and swore,
Till th' army turn’d them out of door.
This tells us plainly what they thought,
That oaths and swearing go for nought,
And that by them th' were only meant
To serve for an expedient.
What was the public faith found out for,
But to slur men of what they fought for?
The public faith, which every one
Is bound t'observe, yet kept by none;
And if that go for nothing, why
Should private faith have such a tie?
Oaths were not purpos’d, more than law,
To keep the good and just in awe,
But to confine the bad and sinful,
Like moral cattle, in a pinfold.
A saint's o'th' heav'nly realm a peer;
And as no peer is bound to swear,
But on the gospel of his honour,
Of which he may dispose as owner,
It follows, though the thing be forgery,

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Pour libertés du parlement ,
Les détruisait absolument;
Et de ces trois lois, la fortune
Est qu'il ne nous en reste aucune.
Ils s'engagèrent, ame et corps,
A servir la chambre des lords,
Puis, de manière très-subtile,
Ils la votèrent inutile.
Cromwell aussi , au parlement, (64)
Sut se défaire par serment
Et promesse réitérée,
De congédier son armée;

L
Par serments tant les amusa
Que l'armée enfin les chassa.
Cela montre le cas que firent
De ces serments ceux qui les prirent;
Et qu'on les prenait sans façon,
Pour servir à l'occasion.
Ce ne fut que par politique,
Qu'on inventa la foi publique,
Que tous devaient bien observer,
Mais qu'aucun n'a voulu garder.
A plus forte raison, je pense ,
Que l'on peut bien donner dispense,
Pour un simple particulier,
Et d'un serment le délier.
Pour les saints, selon leur système ,
Les lois ou serments sont de même,

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for no more,

And false, th' affirm, it is no perjury,
But a mere ceremony, and a breach
Of nothing but a form of speech;
And
goes

when 'tis took,
Than mere saluting of the book.
Suppose the scriptures are of force,
They're but commissions of course,
And saints have freedom to digress,
And vary from 'em, as they please;
Or misinterpret them by private
Instructions, to all aims they drive at.
Then why should we ourselves abridge
And curtail our own privilege ?
Quakers that, like to lanthorns, bear
Their light within ’em ) will not swear:
Their gospel is an accidence,
By which they construe conscience,
And hold no sin so deeply red,
As that of breaking Priscian's head.
( The head and founder of their order,
That stirring hats held worse than murder.)
These thinking th' are oblig'd to troth
In swearing, will not take an oath:
Like mules, who, if th' have not their will
To keep their own pace, stand stock-still:

Et n'obligent que le méchant,
Qu'il faut lier moralement.
Saints, dans la céleste patrie ,
Ont privileges de pairie; (65)
Et comme un pair ne peut jurer,
Mais sur son honneur déclarer,
Qu'il peut garder, ou s'en défaire,
En étant le propriétaire;
Donc, chose très-fausse affirmer,
N'est point du tout se parjurer;
Ce n'est qu'une cérémonie ,
Façon de parler, démentie;
Qu'est-ce que

de prendre un serment?
Baiser un livre simplement. (66)
Mais supposé que l'écriture
Soit de poids, chez nous on assure
Qu'elle n'est que commission,
Qu'on interprète à sa façon.
Et
que

les saints ont droit de faire Ce qu'elle dit, ou le contraire, L'interprétant toujours selon Le but de leur ambition. Changerons-nous donc nos manéges, Abrogeant tous nos priviléges? On voit les trembleurs refuser De jurer, ou livre baiser; (67) Eux, qui portent lumière interne. Cachée, ainsi qu'une lanterne.

But they are weak, and little know
What free-born consciences may

do.
'Tis the temptation of the devil
That makes all human actions evil:
For saints may do the same things by
The spirit, in sincerity,
Which other men are tempted to,
And at the devil's instance do;
And yet the actions be contrary,
Just as the saints and wicked vary.
For as on land there is no beast,
But in some fish at sea's express'd,
So in the wicked there's no vice,
Of which the saints have not a spice;
And yet that thing that's pious in
The one, in th’ other is a sin.
Is't not ridiculous, and nonsense,
A saint should be a slave to conscience,
That ought to be above such fancies,
As far as above ordinances ?
She's of the wicked, as I guess,
B' her looks, her language, and her dress;
And though, like constables, we search,
For false wares, one another's church,
Yet all of us hold this for true,

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