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Devonshire Clergy 'Exceptions Against the Etcaetera Oath (1640)'

British Library, Harley MS 4931, f. 59r


Exceptions against The new Oath in ye Canons from Devonshire

Left margin: 1. That they are bound to take it willingly, w[hi]ch they cannot doe w[i]th a safe conscience, & so shall be periured ipso facto.

Left margin: 2. That they must sweare sincerely, w[i]thout any mentall reservation, yet the (&c) in the oath reserveth, or implieth somewhat more then is expressed, w[hi]ch they must conceiue, or understand.

Left margin: 3. That they must acknowledge both Doctrine, & Discipline of o[u]r Church to containe all things necessary to salvation, w[hi]ch is not true of the Discipline.

Left margin: 4. That they are tied never to giue any consent to any altera-tion of the sayd discipline, though the King, & state shoud en-ioyne [the]m [the]r[e]unto.

Left margin: 5. That the oath crosseth, or contradicteth the Oath of Allegiance, & Supremacy, w[hi]ch they haue allready taken, because if the King by Parliam[en]t shold disanull any part of Ecclesiasticall Discipline, or by a Synod shall alter it, they ar by taking this oath ne-ver to consent.

Left margin: 6. That it is a flatt band against the power of Parliam[en]ts, because the Clergy can constitute noe canons, much lesse make, or im-pose new Oaths, unles the Parliam[e]t confirme [the]m, & [the]r[e]fore they thinke it a proiect to tr trippe up the heeles of all parliaments for ever.

Left margin: 7 That it clipps the wings of royall pr[e]rogative, & spirituall su-premacy, barring his Ma[jes]ty, & his Successours from altering any thing in Church Governm[en]t, either by Synod, or Convocation, or Parliam[en]t.

Left margin: 8. The maine foundation, w[hi]ch the Clergy builds on, is the generall resolution of the Lawyers, That noe Oath can be ordained, nor any authorized to giue it, unles it be first established by Parliament./.


No introduction.


British Library, Harley MS 4931, f. 59r,

Languages: English

Creation date: 1640


  • Devonshire Clergy

Keywords (Text Type)

  • commentary
  • articles

Keywords (Text Topics)

  • The Etcaetera Oath
  • oaths
  • church government
  • episcopacy
  • church ministers
  • Oath of Supremacy
  • Oath of Allegiance

Transcribed by:

Richard Bell (Research Associate)