edition of 1650 was added an appendix on ‘travelling into Turkey and the Levant parts.’ The work was reprinted by Prof. Arber in 1868.
On 30 Aug. 1642 Howell was sworn in at Nottingham as clerk of the council, but the existing vacancy caused by the promotion of Sir Edward Nicholas to a secretaryship of state was filled by Sir John Jacob, and Howell was promised the next clerkship that fell vacant (Letters, ed. Jacobs, Suppl. p.667). The civil wars rendered the arrangement nugatory, and while Howell was paying what he intended to be a short visit to London early in 1643 he was arrested in his chambers by order of the Long parliament, his papers were seized, and he was committed to the Fleet. According to his own account, his only offence was his loyalty. Wood states that he was imprisoned as an insolvent debtor, and in his letters from the Fleet he twice refers to the pressure of his debts (ib. i. § 6, lv., lx.) It is possible that his imprisonment was prolonged at the instigation of his creditors. In spite of his frequent petitions for release, he remained in the Fleet for eight years, i.e. till 1651. Deprived of all other means of livelihood, he applied himself with remarkable industry to literature. At first he confined himself mainly to political pamphleteering. He claimed that his ‘Casual Discourses and Interlocutions between Patricius and Peregrine touching the Distractions of the Times’ was the first pamphlet issued in defence of the royalists; a second part, entitled ‘A Discourse or Parly continued betwixt Patricius and Peregrine upon their landing in France, touching the civill wars of England and Ireland,’ appeared on 21 July 1643 (both are reprinted in the ‘Twelve Treatises,’ 1661). In 1643 he wrote his ‘Mercurius Hibernicus’ (Bristol, 1644, 4to), an account of the recent ‘horrid insurrection and massacre in Ireland,’ dated from the Fleet, 3 April 1643. Prynne, in his ‘Popish Royal Favourite’ (1644), referring to Howell's account of Prince Charles's visit to Spain in ‘Dodona's Grove,’ described him as ‘no friend to parliament and a malignant.’ Howell repudiated the charge in his ‘Vindication of some passages reflecting upon him’ (1644), to which he added ‘A Clearing of some Occurrences in Spain at His Majesty's being there.’ Howell returned to the topic in ‘Preeminence and Pedigree of Parliaments’ (1644; reissued 1677), in which he described the Long parliament as ‘that high Synedrion wherein the Wisdom of the whole Senate is epitomized.’ Prynne adhered to his original statement in ‘A moderate Apology against a pretended Calumny,’ London, 1644, 4to. ‘England's Tears for the present Wars.’ an appeal for peace, followed immediately, and was translated into Latin as ‘Angliæ Suspiria et Lacrymæ,’ London, 1646, and into Dutch in 1649 (cf. reprinted in Harl. Misc. and Somers Tracts). It was reported to Howell in 1644 that the king was dissatisfied with some of his recent utterances on account of their ‘indifferency and lukewarmness,’ and he thereupon sent by letter to the king mild assurances of his loyalty, 3 Sept. 1644 (Epist. ii. lxiii.) On the same day he completed ‘A sober and seasonable memorandum sent to Philip, Earl of Pembroke,’ with whom he claimed a distant relationship [see Herbert, Philip]; on 3 May 1645 ‘The Sway of the Sword,’ a justification of Charles's claim to control the militia; and on 25 Feb. 1647-8 a defence of the Treaty of the Isle of Wight. In 1649 he issued, in English, French, and Latin, Charles I's latest declaration ‘touching his constancy in the Protestant religion,’ and also published an amusing, if ill-natured, ‘Perfect Description of the People and Country of Scotland,’ which was reprinted in No. 13 of Wilkes's ‘North Briton’ (August 1762), at the time of the agitation against Lord Bute. In 1651 he dedicated to the Long parliament his ‘S.P.Q.V. A Survey of the Seignorie of Venice’ (London, 1651, fol.) He was admitted to bail, and released from the Fleet in the same year.
As soon as Cromwell was installed in supreme power, Howell sought his favour by dedicating to him a pamphlet entitled ‘Some sober Inspections made into the carriage and consults of the late Long Parliament,’ London, 1653, 12mo, in the form of a dialogue between Phil-Anglus and Polyander (reissued in 1660). Howell commends Cromwell for having destroyed the parliament; compares the Protector to Charles Martel: argues in favour of rule by ‘a single person,’ and condemns 'the common people' as ‘a wavering windy thing’ and ‘an humersome and cross-grained animal.’ Dugdale, writing on 9 Oct. 1655, declared that Howell had spoken in the tract more boldly of the parliament ‘than any man that hath wrote since they sate’ (Hist. MSS. Comm. 5th Rep. p.17). On 2 Oct. 1654 Howell addressed ‘an admonition to my lord Protector and his council of their present danger,’ in which, while urging the need of an hereditary monarchy, he advised Cromwell to conciliate the army by admitting the officers to political influence, and to negotiate with Charles Stuart a treaty by which Charles should succeed him under well-defined limitations. In 1657 he offered to write for the council of state ‘a new treatise on the sovereignty of the seas’ (Hist. MSS. Comm. 5th Rep. p.314). Throughout the Commonwealth Howell's pen