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Sir Anthony made one of the new Privy Council. - Advanced
to the Peerage.- His Generosity. — Conduct of Charles. — Dissolution of Parliament.—[Sir Anthony sits at the trial of the Regicides.] — The new Parliament assemble. — Their Proceedings. — Sale of Dunkirk.
A.D. 1660. The suddenness with which this restoration was
brought about was surprising to the world, and it far exceeded the king's hopes; but, according to Mr. Locke, Sir Anthony had laid the plan of it some time before. This plan he had formed when all the forces who had appeared for the king were defeated, and when the court abroad and the royalists at home were totally dispirited. Sir Anthony's conduct accounts for that uncertainty with which Lord Clarendon and other historians confess Monk to have acted; who, it is evident, was turned and directed by his policy, and fixed by his resolution.
When Sir Anthony attended, with the other commissioners, at Breda, 56 the king distinguished A.D. 1660. him in a particular manner; and told him," he Honours was very sensible with what zeal and application upotholin he had laboured for his restoration.” As a proof that the king sincerely thought so, Sir Anthony was one of the first persons admitted into the privy council. On the 9th of June 1660, he was made governor of the Isle of Wight, * and colonel of a regiment of horse. He was likewise made chancellor of the exchequer and under-treasurer, and was appointed lord-lieutenant of the county of Dorset. Even whilst the king was at Canterbury, before the coronation, he was created a baron, by the title of “Baron Ashley + of Win
* These two commissions, which are among Lord Shaftesbury's papers, are under the hand and seal of Monk, by virtue of an authority from the king: the last was probably for the regiment of horse which had been Fleetwood's, and was given to Sir Anthony by the parliament, March 27th.
+ He chose this title pursuant to an article in the settlement upon his father's marriage with the only daughter of Sir Anthony Ashley, “ That if Sir John Cooper or his heirs should come to be honoured with the degree of peerage, they should take that for their citle.”—Gibson's Camden, i. 175.
56 This was an unhappy journey for Sir Anthony. It was upon this occasion he received that serious injury, which grew into an abscess, and embittered the rest of his life. This accident has already been incidentally mentioned in the introduction, as the remote occasion of the earl's intimacy with Mr. Locke.
A.D. 1660. burn St. Giles. In the preamble to his patent,
the king farther acknowledged “the restoration to be chiefly owing to him; and that, after many endeavours to free the nation from the evils in which it was involved, he at length, by his wisdom and counsels, in concert with General Monk, delivered it from the servitude under which it so long had groaned.”
These employments and honours were conferred on him without any application or secret addresses, and without his endeavouring to obtain any private articles for himself before the king's coming over. Nay, from what passed between Sir Anthony and Monk previous to the Restoration, it is plain that he had insisted with Monk, that the king should be brought in upon proper
57 This is a mistake: his name frequently occurs as Sir A. A. Cooper after this time, particularly in the commission for the trial of the regicides. The date of his patent of peerage is 20th April 1661, a few days before the meeting of the new parliament.
5* Lord Clarendon attributes Sir Anthony's appointment as privy counsellor to the special recommendation of Monk, and adds, that this honour was the rather conferred upon him because, “having lately married the piece of the Earl of Southampton, it was believed that his slippery humour would be easily restrained and fixed by the uncle.”- Life of Clarendon by himself.
duct to the
terms. This, however, was prevented by the con- A.D. 1660. flux of those who had little merit but in an absolute resignation to the crown, and who made the torrent too great to be resisted. Though Lord Ashley had asked nothing for Lord Ash
ley's genehimself, yet, from the favour to which his services rous conentitled him, he made one request to the king, Wallop fawhich was a proof of the disinterestedness of his friendship and the generosity of his temper.
The great estate of the Wallop family having been forfeited at the Restoration, Lord Ashley exerted his interest with the king for a grant of it; and, when he might easily have obtained it for himself and his heirs, he only procured himself to be made a joint-sharer with three other persons of distinction, his particular friends, to whom the estate was granted for their lives, and to the survivor of them for ever. The whole management of it was left to Lord Ashley, but it was received and applied for the benefit of the family. On the 25th of June 1668, (one of the sharers being dead,) * he reconveyed his third part to the family, and four years afterwards, in July 1672, prevailed on the other two to follow his example ;
* The deeds of trust and conveyance are still extant
He does service to
A.D. 1660. by which means an ancient and worthy family
was preserved from ruin.
He did likewise, some considerable service to the Queen the Queen of Bohemia and her family, who had of Bohemia,
suffered much for the protestant cause. This appears by a letter from the queen's eldest daughter, the Princess Elizabeth (sister to the Princess Sophia), who was distinguished for her merit and understanding. What the particular service was, is not mentioned; but he had probably exerted his interest in parliament in the queen's behalf immediately after the Restoration, when two sums, of ten thousand pounds each, were voted
to be presented to her. Contributes Lord Ashley remembered how much he had
nofr suffered by the court of wards; the corruption the court of
and oppressions of which he perfectly well knew, the power it threw into the hands of the crown, and the mischiefs it produced to the liberty of the subject. The removing of this grievance was one of the first things taken into consideration, and chiefly by his interest, 59 before the king came
to the de
59 This must rest upon some evidence among the private papers of the family, for Sir Anthony's name is not found among those who formed the committee for preparing these bills. It is indeed remarked in the Parliamentary History, that