AFTER the-execution of the King, the Commons, by an Act, abolished Monarchy and erected a Commonwealth in its, place. Orders were sent to the Mayor and Sheriffs requiring them to make proclamation accordingly. The Mayor, however, Reynardson, who had always shown Royalist leanings, refused to obey on the ground that he had already, in entering upon the various offices which he had held, taken so many oaths of loyalty that he could not, in conscience, obey. He was therefore committed to the Tower for two months, deprived of his Mayoralty, and fined ,"2000 for contempt. And the City was ordered to elect a new Mayor with all convenient speed.
The City obeyed; Alderman Atkins was chosen Mayor, and on the 30th of May the proclamation was duly made, but not without hooting and groaning from the crowd. Two Aldermen, Soames and Chambers, were not present. On being questioned at the Bar of the House, Soames said boldly that the proclamation was against his judgment and conscience; Chambers that his heart was not in the business. They were therefore degraded from their position and declared incapable of filling any City office for the future.
A day of public thanksgiving was, then appointed, when the City invited the House of Commons to hear a sermon at Christ Church, Newgate, and afterwards to a noble entertainment at the Grocers' Hall. The day after, the City presented Fairfax with a basin and ewer of gold, and Cromwell with a hundred pounds' worth of plate and a purse of £200 in gold.
The exchange of presents and courtesies ended, for the time, with the presentation to the City, by the House of Commons, of Richmond Park.
On the 19th of September 1650 another day of thanksgiving was held for the victory of Dunbar, and another after the victory of Worcester.
Cromwell was received on his return to London by the Mayor, Aldermen, and Sheriffs, who invited him to a Banquet.
On the forcible dissolution of the old Parliament, petitions were presented to Cromwell by the City for and against the reinstatement of the Parliament. Cromwell met them both by constituting a certain number of persons the " Supreme