Declaration of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, February 13, 1689

A printed version of the text can be found on pages 42 to 45 of A Parliamentary History of the Glorious Revolution, by David Lewis Jones (London: Her Majesty's Stationery Office, 1988).

Whereas the late King James the Second, by the assistance of divers evil counsellors, judges, and ministers, employed by him, did endeavour to subvert and extirpate the Protestant religion, and the laws and liberties of this Kingdom,

By assuming and exercising a power of dispensing with and suspending of laws, and the execution of laws, without consent of Parliament;

By committing and prosecuting divers worthy prelates, for humbly petitioning to be excused from concurring to the said assumed Power;

By issuing and causing to be executed a Commission, under the Great Seal, for erecting a court, called, The Court of Commissioners for Ecclesiastical Causes;

By levying money for and to the use of the Crown, by pretence of prerogative, for other time, and in other manner, than the same was granted by Parliament;

By raising and keeping a standing army within this Kingdom in time of peace, without consent of Parliament; and quartering soldiers contrary to law;

By causing several good subjects, being Protestants, to be disarmed, at the same time when papists were both armed and employed contrary to law;

By violating the freedom of election of members to serve in Parliament;

By prosecutions in the Court of King's Bench, for matters and causes cognizable only in Parliament: And by divers other arbitrary and illegal courses: And whereas, of late years, partial, corrupt, and unqualified persons have been returned, and served on juries in trials, and particularly, divers jurors in trials for high treason, which were not freeholders;

And excessive bail hath been required of persons committed in criminal cases, to elude the benefit of the laws made for the liberty of the subjects;

And excessive fines have been imposed;

And illegal and cruel punishments inflicted;

And several grants and promises made of fines and forfeitures, before any conviction or judgement against the persons upon whom the same were to be levied;;

All which are utterly and directly contrary to the known laws, and statutes, and freedom, of this realm:

And whereas the said late King James the Second having abdicated the government; and the throne being thereby vacant;

His Highness the Prince of Orange whom it hath pleased Almighty God to make the glorious instrument of delivering this Kingdom from Popery and arbitrary power, did, by the advice of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and divers principal persons of the Commons, cause letters to be written to the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, being Protestants; and other letters, to the several counties, cities, universities, boroughs, and cinque ports, for the choosing of such persons to represent them as were of right to be sent to Parliament, to meet and sit at Westminster upon the 22th day of January, in this year 1688, in order to such an establishment, as that their religion, laws, and liberties, might not again be in danger of being subverted: Upon which letters, elections having been accordingly made;

And thereupon, the said Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, pursuant to their respective letters, and elections, being now assembled in a full and free Representative of this Nation, taking into their most serious consideration the best means for attaining the ends aforesaid, do, in the first place, (as their ancestors, in like case, have usually done) for the vindication and asserting their ancient rights and liberties, declare:

That the pretended power of suspending of laws by regal authority, without consent of Parliament is illegal;

That the pretended power of dispensing with laws, or the execution of laws, by regal authority, as it hath been assumed and exercised of late, is illegal;

That the Commission for erecting the late Court of Commissioners for Ecclesiastical Causes, and all other Commissions and Courts of like nature, are illegal and pernicious;

That levying of money for or to the use of the Crown, by pretence of prerogative, without grant of Parliament, for longer time, or in other manner, than the same is or shall be granted, is illegal;

That it is the right of the subjects to petition the King; and all commitments and prosecutions for such petitioning, are illegal;

That the raising or keeping a standing army within the Kingdom in time of peace, unless it be with consent of Parliament, is against law;

That the subjects, which are Protestants, may have arms for their defence, suitable to their conditions, as allowed by law;

That election of members of Parliament ought to be free;

That the freedom and debates or proceedings in Parliament ought not to be impeached or questioned in any court or place out of Parliament;

That excessive bail ought not to be required; nor excessive fines imposed; nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted;

That jurors ought to be impanelled and returned; and jurors, which pass upon men in trials for high treason, ought to be freeholders;

That all grants and promises of fines and forfeitures of particular persons, before conviction, are illegal and void;

And that, for redress of all grievances, and for the amending, strengthening, and preserving of the laws, Parliaments ought to be held frequently.

And they do claim, demand, and insist upon, all and singular the premises, as their undoubted rights and liberties; and that no declarations, judgements, doings, or proceedings, to the prejudice of the people, in any of the said premises, ought, in any wise, to be drawn hereafter with consequence, or example.

To which demand of their rights they are particularly encouraged by the Declaration of his Highness the Prince of Orange; as being the only means for obtaining a full redress and remedy therein.

Having therefore an entire confidence, that his said Highness the Prince of Orange will perfect a deliverance so far advanced by him; and will still preserve them from the violation of their rights, which they have here asserted; and from all other attempts upon their religion, rights and liberties;

The said Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, assembled at Westminster, do resolve,

That William and Mary, Prince and Princess of Orange, be, and be declared, King and queen of England, France, and Ireland, and the Dominions thereunto belonging; to hold the Crown and Royal Dignity of the said Kingdoms and Dominions to them the said Prince and Princess, during their lives, and the life of the survivor of them; And that the sole and full exercise of the regal power be only in, and executed by, the said Prince of Orange, in the names of the said Prince and Princess, during their joint lives; and, after their deceases, the said Crown and Royal Dignity of the said Kingdoms and Dominions to be to the Heirs of the Body of the said Princess; And, for default of such issue, to the Princess Ann of Denmark, and the heirs of her body; and, for default of such issue, to the heirs of the body of the said Prince of Orange.

And the said Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, do pray the said Prince and Princess of Orange to accept the same accordingly.

And that the oaths, hereafter mentioned, be taken by all persons of whom the oaths of allegiance and supremacy might be required by law, instead of them; and that the said oaths of allegiance and supremacy be abrogated.

I, A.B. do sincerely promise and swear, that I will be faithful, and bear true allegiance, to their Majesties King William and Queen Mary. So help me God.

I, A.B. do swear, that I do from my heart abhor, detest, and abjure, as impious and heretical, this damnable doctrine and position, That Princes excommunicated or deprived by the Pope, or any authority of the See of Rome, may be deposed or murdered by their subjects, or any one whatsoever. And I do declare, that no foreign prince, person, prelate, state, or potentate, hath, or ought to have, any jurisdiction, power, superiority, preeminence, or authority, ecclesiastical or spiritual, within this Realm. So help me God.

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