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Saye and Sele, William Fiennes, 1st Viscount

William Fiennes Saye and Sele, 1st Viscount (fīnz, sā´ənsēl), 1582–1662, English politician and promoter of colonization in America. He was a Puritan in religious sympathy and a leader in the House of Lords of the opposition to James I and Charles I. From 1630, Saye, with Robert Greville (2d Baron Brooke), John Pym, and others, entered into several colonization schemes. The first of these was on Providence Island (now Providencia, part of Colombia) in the Caribbean. The second was at Saybrook (named for the two lords), Conn., settled in 1635 on the basis of a deed obtained from the 2d earl of Warwick. John Winthrop the younger (1606–76) was their governor at Saybrook. In 1633 they bought a plantation at Cocheco (now Dover, N.H.). The lords planned to settle in New England, but their plan for establishing a hereditary aristocracy in the colonies met with disfavor in New England, and after a few years they lost interest in the settlements. In 1641 they sold the Dover establishment to Massachusetts, and three years later they sold Saybrook to Connecticut. Providence Island was taken by the Spanish in 1641. In the English civil war Saye remained in the parliamentary party and played a decisive role in securing the adoption of the Self-Denying Ordinance (1645). In the dispute between the army and Parliament in 1647 he supported the army. He did not, however, desire the abolition of the monarchy, and he was one of the parliamentary commissioners who negotiated with Charles at Newport in 1648. He retired from public life after the king's execution (1649).

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"Saye and Sele, William Fiennes, 1st Viscount." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved May 28, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/saye-and-sele-william-fiennes-1st-viscount

Saye and Sele, William Fiennes, 1st Viscount

Saye and Sele, William Fiennes, 1st Viscount (1582–1662). Saye and Sele was a leading member of the radical, win-the-war faction in the House of Lords during the 1640s. As early as the 1620s he was a critic of arbitrary government and illegal taxation. During the 1630s he gave himself to puritan colonization schemes in the New World. Saye refused to pay ship money, and declined the military oath imposed by Charles on the nobility at the outbreak of the Bishops' wars with Scotland. In the Long Parliament he continued to work with the radical opponents of the regime despite being appointed to the Privy Council. He backed both the self-denying ordinance of 1645, which excluded the aristocracy from the leadership of the parliamentary armies, and the creation of the New Model Army. In 1647, as the leading political Independent in the House of Peers, he worked closely with Ireton and the council of the army in drafting the Heads of the Proposals. This projected settlement was the most generous ever offered the king during the course of the civil wars. Politically inactive after 1649, Saye devoted himself to religion. In 1654 he published Vindiciae veritatis, arguing for a minimal role for the magistrate in regulating men's beliefs. Upon Charles II's return in 1660 he was again appointed to the Privy Council.

Ian Gentles

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"Saye and Sele, William Fiennes, 1st Viscount." The Oxford Companion to British History. . Encyclopedia.com. 28 May. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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"Saye and Sele, William Fiennes, 1st Viscount." The Oxford Companion to British History. . Retrieved May 28, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/history/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/saye-and-sele-william-fiennes-1st-viscount