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761
SHAFTESBURY, IST EARL OF


parliament, especially on the matter of the limitation of the power of the protector, and against the House of Lords. He was throughout these debates celebrated for the “ nervous and subtle oratory" which made him so formidable in after days. Upon the replacing of the Rump by the army, after the breaking up of Richa1d's parliament, Cooper endeavoured unsuccessfully to take his seat on the ground of his former disputed election for Downton. He was, however, elected on the council of state, and was the only Presbyterian in it; he was at once accused by Scot, along with W hitelocke, of corresponding with Hyde. This he solemnly denied. After the rising in Cheshire Cooper was arrested in Dorsetshire on a charge of corresponding with its leader Booth, but on the matter being investigated by the council he was unanimously acquitted. In the disputes between Lambert at the head of the military party and the Rump in union with the council of state, he supported the latter, and upon the temporary supremacy of Lambert's party worked indefatigably to restore the Rump. With Monk's commissioners he, with Haselrig, had a fruitless conference, but he assured Monk of his co-operation, and joined with eight others of the overthrown council of state in naming him commander-in-chief of the forces of England and Scotland. He was instrumental in securing the Tower for the parliament, and in obtaining the adhesion of Admiral Lawson and the fleet. Upon the restoration of the parliament on the 26th of December Cooper was one of the commissioners to command the army, and on the 2nd of January was made one of the new council of state. On the 7th of January he took his seat on his election for Downton in 1640, and was made colonel of Fleetwoods regiment of horse. He speedily secured the admission of the secluded members, having meanwhile been in continual communication with Monk, was again one of the fresh council of state, consisting entirely of friends of the Restoration, and accepted from Monk a commission to be governor of the Isle of Wight and captain of a company of foot. He now steadily pursued the design of the Restoration, but without holding any private correspondence with the king, and only on terms similar to those proposed in 1648 to Charles I. at the Isle of Wight. In the Convention parliament he sat for Wiltshire. Monk cut short these deliberations and forced on the Restoration without condition. Cooper was one of the twelve commissioners who went to Charles at Breda to invite him to return. On his journey he was upset from his carriage, and the accident caused an internal abscess which was never cured.

Cooper was at once placed on the privy council, receiving also a formal pardon for former delinquencies. His first duty was to examine the Anabaptist prisoners in the Tower. In the prolonged discussions regarding the Bill of Indemnity he was instrumental in saving the life of Haselrig, and opposed the clause compelling all officers who had served under Cromwell to refund their salaries, he himself never having had any. He showed indeed none of the avaricious temper so common among the politicians of the time. He was one of the commissioners for conducting the trials of the regicides, but was himself vehemently “fallen upon ” by Prynne for having acted with Cromwell. He was named on the council of plantations and on that of trade. In the debate abolishing the court of wards he spoke, like most landed proprietors, in favour of laying the burden on the excise instead of on the land, and on the question of the restoration of the bishops carried in the interests of the court an adjournment of the debate for three months. At the Coronation in April 1661 Cooper had been made a peer, as Baron Ashley of Wimborne St Giles, in express recognition of his services at the Restoration; and on the meeting of the new parliament in May he was appointed chancellor of the exchequer and under-treasurer, aided no doubt by his connexion with Southampton. He vehemently opposed the persecuting acts now passed-the Corporation Act, the Uniformity Bill, against which he is said to have spoken three hundred times, and the Militia Act. He is stated also to have influenced the king in issuing his dispensing declaration of the 26th of December 1662, and he zealously supported a bill introduced for the purpose of conhrming the declaration, rising thereby in favour and influence with Charles. He was himself the author of a treatise on' tolerance. He was now recognized as one of the chief opponents of Clarendon and the High Anglican policy. On the breaking out of the Dutch War in 1664 he was made treasurer of the prizes, being accountable to the king alone for all sums received or spent. He was also one of the grantees of the province of Carolina and took a leading part in its management; it was at his request that Locke in 1669 drew up a constitution for the new colony. In September 1665 the king unexpectedly paid him a visit at Wimborne. He opposed unsuccessfully the appropriation proviso introduced into the supply bill as hindering the due administration of finance, and this opposition seems to have brought about a reconciliation with Clarendon. In 1668, however, he supported a bill to appoint commissioners to examine the accounts of the Dutch War, though in the previous year he had opposed it. In accordance with his former action on all questions of religious toleration he opposed the shameful Five Mile Act of 1665. In 1667 he supported the bill for prohibiting the importation of Irish cattle, on the ground that it would lead to a great fall of rents in England. Ashley was himself a large landowner, and, moreover, was opposed to Ormonde, who would have benefited by the importation. In all other questions of this kind he shows himself far in advance of the economic fallacies of the day. His action led to an altercation with Ossory, the son of Ormonde, in which Ossory used language for which he was compelled to apologize. On the death of Southampton, Ashley was placed on the commission of the treasury, Clifford and William Coventry being his principal colleagues. He appears to have taken no part in the attempt to impeach Clarendon on a general charge of treason. The new administration was headed by Buckingham, in whose toleration and comprehension principles Ashley shared to the full. An able paper Written by him to the king in support of these principles, on the ground especially of their advantage to trade, has been preserved. He excepts, however, from toleration Roman Catholics and Fifth Monarchy men. His attention to all trade questions was close and constant; he was a member of the council of trade and plantations appointed in 1670, and was its president from 1672 to 1676. The difficulty of the succession also occupied him, and he co-operated thus early in the design of legitimizing Monmouth as a rival to James. In the intrigues which led to the infamous treaty to Dover he had no part. The treaty contained a clause by which Charles was bound to declare himself aCatholic, and with the knowledge of this Ashley, as a stanch Protestant, could not be trusted. In order to blind him and the other Protestant members of the Cabal a sham treaty was arranged in which this clause did not appear, and it was not until a considerable while afterwards that he found out that he had been duped. Under this misunderstanding he signed the sham Dover treaty on the 31st of December 1670. This treaty, however, was kept from public knowledge, and Ashley helped Charles to hoodwink parliament by signing a similar treaty on the 2nd of February 1672, which was laid before them as the only one in existence. His approval of the attempt of the Lords to alter a money bill led to the loss of the supply to Charles and to the consequent displeasure of the king. His support to the Lord Roos Act, ascribed generally to his desire to ingratiate himself with Charles, was no doubt due in part to the fact that his son had married Lord Roos's sister. So far from advising the “ Stop of the Exchequer, ” he opposed this bad measure; the reasons which he left with the king for his opposition are extant. The responsibility rests with Clifford alone. In the other great measure of the Cabal ministry, Charles's Declaration of Indulgence, he concurred. He was now rewarded by being made earl of Shaftesbury and Baron Cooper of Pawlett by a patent dated the 23rd of April 1672. It is stated too that he was offered, but refused, the lord treasurership. On the 17th of November 1672, however, he became lord chancellor, Bridgman having been compelled to resign the seat. As chancellor he issued writs for the election of thirty-six new members to fill vacancies caused during the long recess; this, though grounded upon precedent, was open to suspicion as an attempt to fortify

Charles, and was attacked by an angry House of Commons