Above all, the terms of subscription had been made strict and rigid, on purpose to disgust all the zealous and scrupulous among the Presbyterians, and deprive them of their livings. About two thousand of the clergy, in one day, relinquished their cures; and, to the astonishment of the court, sacrificed their interest to their religious tenets.
Beaufort, always evinces his respect to them by the yearly present of a fat buck. She then comments on the ups and downs of life; and observes that it is a pity her son Tom preferred the medical profession to the church. Their cousin, Mr. Beaufort, has two livings. To all this Mr. Roger says nothing, except an occasional "Thank Heaven, I want no man's help! I am as well to do as my neighbours.
Moore and walked home, where I found Captain Ferrer with my wife, and after speaking a matter of an hour with him he went home and we all to bed. Jack Cole, my old friend, found me out at the Wardrobe; and, among other things, he told me that certainly most of the chief ministers of London would fling up their livings; and that, soon or late, the issue thereof would be sad to the King and Court.
The celibacy of the clergy had become a mere farce; and they got dispensations enabling them to obtain ecclesiastical livings for their bastards. The kings set the worst example: both James IV. and James V. secured the richest abbeys, and, in the case of James IV., the Primacy, for their bastard sons. All these abuses were of old standing.
He amused me with hundreds of fine prospects of church livings, governments, etc., and of being restored to the good graces of the King and to the strictest friendship with his Prime Minister. I had more liberty than before.
But, even though the bishops as a body had been as zealous as individuals amongst them undoubtedly were, they had no power to put down abuses. The patronage of Church livings, including rectories, vicarages, and chaplaincies enjoyed by laymen, as well as by chapters, monasteries, convents, hospitals, etc., made it impossible for a bishop to exercise control over the clergy of his diocese.
In February 1690 the Club was distracted; and to Melville, as Commissioner in the Scottish Parliament, William gave orders that the Acts for re-establishing Presbytery and abolishing lay patronage of livings were to be passed. Montgomery was obliged to bid yet higher for the favour of the more extreme preachers and devotees, but he failed.
There was no funeral oration at any of them. It could not be hazarded. His brother, more modest than he, and an honest man, kept the office of secretary of the cabinet, which he had, and which the Cardinal had given him. This brother found an immense heritage. He had but one son, canon of Saint-Honore, who had never desired places or livings, and who led a good life.
Political meetings were held, justice was administered by magistrates after old English precedents, and church services were performed by a score of clergymen, nearly all graduates of Cambridge, though one or two had their degrees from Oxford, and nearly all of whom had held livings in the Church of England.
Accordingly, although your Majesty has commanded that the livings and offices of these islands be given to the old citizens and those deserving of these rewards, the auditors and their wives bring it about that the said relatives, dependents, and other persons whom they bring with them are the first to be provided for.