Full text: Religion, colonising & trade

But most of his leading contemporaties were not of 
his way of thinking in this respect. When Chatles II 
took over the Empire from Cromwell, in the fore- 
front of the plantations was New England, a source 
of keen anxiety to those in old England who were 
deputed, in John Evelyn’s words, ‘to advise and 
counsel His Majesty to the best of our abilities for the 
well governing of his Foreign Plantations.” Evelyn 
was appointed one of the Commissioners of Planta- 
tions, when a Standing Council of Plantations was 
constituted in 1671, and he continued to serve when 
in the following year the two Councils of Trade and 
Plantations were combined under the presidency of 
Lotd Shaftesbury. What troubled the Commissioners 
of Plantations was that the New Englanders, being in 
fact the stiff-backed citizens of Massachusetts, © were 
able to contest with all other plantations about them, 
and there was fear of their breaking from all depend- 
ence on this nation,” and again, ¢ we understood they 
were a people almost upon the very brink of renounc- 
ing any dependence on the Crown.” 1 If there was 
likelihood that the seed of further New Englands 
would be sown, colonisation was not likely to com- 
mend itself to those whose temper had been shown by 
passing the disastrous Act of Uniformity at home. 
On the other hand, trade had everything to commend 
it, inasmuch as through the navigation acts trade 
was to be an instrument for keeping the plantations 
in subordination to the Crown? Mr. Gladstone 
L Evelyn's Diary, under dates May 26 and June 6, 1671. 
% See the circular letter from the King to the Governors of all the 
plantations dated August 25, 1663: Colonial Calendar, America and 
West Indies, 1661~8, pp. 155-6.

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