Journal of the House of Commons: Volume 10, 1688-1693. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1802.
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Lunæ, 29 die Aprilis; 1° Willielmi et Mariæ.
Nassau's, &c. Nat.
Bailing and Escape of Brent.
Mr. Cristy reports from the Committee, to whom the whole Matter of Fact relating to the Bailing of Mr. Robert Brent was referred to be examined, and particularly to examine Sir James Smith touching the same, That the Committee oftentimes met, and examined divers Witnesses, and Sir James Smith himself, touching the Commitment and Bailing Mr. Brent: And
That they find, That Mr. Brent was taken and imprisoned the Fourteenth Day of January 1688, by the said Sir James Smith's personal Assistance of Sir Wm. Waller; and that the said Sir James Smith made his Mittimus, directed to the Keeper of the Poultry Compter, in these Words, viz.
"Receive into your Custody the Body of Robert Brent, Esquire, being a Roman Catholick, and charged before me with High Treason, for assisting and aiding, and abetting divers Romish Priests and Jesuits, in their several Treasons against the Laws of this Realm; and for conspiring the Subversion of the Protestant Religion in this Kingdom, and aiding the Pope's Nuncio therein; and for endeavouring the Subversion of the Government by new modelling several Corporations of England: And himself safely keep, until he shall from thence be discharged by due Course of Law: And for so doing, this shall be your Warrant. Dated, and given under my Hand and Seal, this Fourteenth Day of January 1688.
That, the Twenty-fourth Day of January following, the said Sir James Smith, by his sole Authority, without the Privity or Concurrence of any other Justice of the Peace, took a Recognizance of the said Mr. Brent of Five hundred Pounds; and the like Recognizance of Arthur Shallett, Joseph Moor, Gilbert Whitehall and Richard Poole, for the Sum of Two hundred and Fifty Pounds apiece; conditioned, that the said Mr. Brent shall appear at the next Session of the Peace for London: And it appears, by the Testimony of Wm. Walters, Servant to the said Mr. Brent, that, within Two Days after his being bailed, the said Mr. Brent conveyed away himself secretly beyond Sea, as his Servant saith he believes.
That in the Committee's Examining the said Sir James Smith, they demanded of the said Sir James Smith his Reason, why he bailed the said Mr. Brent by his single Authority, when he stood committed under his own Hand and Seal for High Treason: He pretended the Advice of Sir Wm. Waller, from whom he alledged to have expected Witnesses against the said Mr. Brent.
And, that he further pretended the Advice of Sir George Treby, the then Recorder of London: But, upon the Examination of Sir Wm. Waller, he utterly denies any such Advice given; and the said Sir George Treby, being a Member of the Committee, in like Manner denied, that he advised, that the said Mr. Brent should be, in that Matter, bailed.
That it further appeared, by the Examination of John Wright, Wm. Tindall, and Nicholas Piggot, and the said Sir Wm. Waller, that the Interposition and Messages of several Lords, in Behalf of the said Mr. Brent alledged by the said Sir James Smith, were only pretended; the same being denied by the said Witnesses.
That it further appears to the Committee, That several Applications were made by the said Mr. Pigott, and one Mr. Bazire, to the said Sir James Smith, for the Bailing the said Mr. Brent; and that the said Mr. Bazire, was the principal Transactor of the whole Matter, and agreed with him to accept of Bail for One thousand Pounds, for setting the said Mr. Brent at Liberty; and that, by the said Mr. Bazire, the Four Persons aforesaid were procured in a few Hours, to be his Bail, and Notice given, that they should all be bound for no more than One thousand Pounds.
And, it appearing to this Committee, That the said Mr. Bazire was principally trusted by the said Mr. Brent, to treat with the said Sir James Smith about Bailing him; and that, if any secret Agreeement was made about the same, the said Mr. Bazire was the chief or sole Agent therein; That they sent several Summons for him; but could not procure him to appear to be examined, notwithstanding they were informed that he was in Town, and at his Chambers in the Temple: And, upon Complaint thereof made to this House, a Warrant was issued under the Speaker's Hand to bring him into Custody; but hitherto the Serjeant attending this House hath not been able to apprehend him: And the Committee is not informed of any other Witnesses of the Transactions with the said Sir James Smith, about the Bailing the said Mr. Brent. Therefore they humbly submit these Matters of Fact to the Consideration of this honourable House.
Annulling Sidney's Attainder.
A Petition of the Inhabitants of the County of Gloucester, and of the City and County of Gloucester, was read; shewing, That the Petitioners lie under great Grievance, by reason of a Clause in an Act of Parliament made in the Thirtieth Year of King Charles the Second, intituled, An Act for Preservation of Fishing in the River Seavorne; whereby it is Enacted, That no Persons shall fish with Nets above Sixty Yards in Length, for the taking of Salmon, in any Part of the River below Gloucester Bridge; but that such Length is not sufficicent, by Reason of the Wideness of the Channel; so that the capital Fisheries in the River are wholly made useless for above Thirty Miles together; the River being, in several Fisheries, above a Thousand Yards broad; and that by Reason the long Nets are taken away, several Families are ruined: And praving Relief against such Grievances.
Leave of Absence.
Orphans of London.
Armstrong's Judgment on Outlawry.
Sir Joseph Tredenham reports from the Grand Committee of Grievances, That they had, according to the Order of the House, taken into Consideration the Matter to them referred, relating to Sir Thomas Armstrong; and that, having summoned Sir Samuel Astry, the Clerk of the Crown, they attended with the Record of the Outlawry of Hill. 35 and 36 Car. II. by which it appeared, that the Quint' exact was Lunæ, prox. post fest. sanct. Andreæ Apostoli, 35° Car. II. That the Award of the Execution was die Sabbati, prox. post Quinden. Sanctæ Trinitat 36° upon a Nihil dicit.
That Sir Samuel Astry, being examined, declared he was present at the Arraignment of Sir Thomas Armstrong, who being asked, why Execution should not be awarded against him, said, That by the Statute of 5 and 6 Ed. VI. cap. 11, it is Enacted, that if the Party outlawed shall, within One Year next after the Outlawry pronounced, yield himself to the Chief Justice of England, for the Time being, and offer to traverse the Indictment, or appeal, that then he shall be received to the said Traverse: That he was answered by the Lord Chief Justice Jefferycs, that he could pretend to no Benefit, since he did not render himself to the Lord Chief Justice, as that Statute requires: And that the Court thereupon proceeded to award Judgment against him as a Traitor; and believes he was executed accordingly.
That Mrs. Mathewes (Daughter of Sir Thomas Armstrong) being likewise examined said, She was in the Court of King's Bench when her Father, Sir Thomas Armstrong, was arraigned: That Sir Thomas Armstrong demanded to have the Statute of 5 and 6 Edw. VI. read; and it was refused: That he likewise demanded Counsel, and a Trial; but it was denied: And, he urging, that Holloway, who was in the same Circumstances, had his Trial, that the Chief Justice said, they had enough against Holloway: To which Sir Thomas replied, That then they had not against him; and said, his Blood be upon him, meaning the Lord Chief Justice: Who said, "Let it, let it, I am Clamour-proof:" That she added, that her Father had Counsel in Newgate, and had Advice there from an unknown Hand; and that he was very much loaded with Irons, and very ill used: That her Sister was struck by the Keeper of Newgate; and she herself committed by the Court of King's Bench, for crying out, when Sentence was given, That her Father was murdered.
Resolved, That it is the Opinion of this Committee, That the Award of Execution by the Court of King's Bench, against Sir Thomas Armstrong, in Trinity Term, in the Thirty-sixth Year of King Charles the Second, was a high Violation of Justice, and against the express Law of the Land.
Resolved, That the House doth agree with the Committee, That the Award of Execution, by the Court of King's Bench, against Sir Thomas Armstrong, in Trinity Term, in the Thirty-sixth Year of King Charles the Second, was a high Violation of Justice, and against the express Law of the Land.
Marches Court in Wales.
Privilege-Publication of Proceedings.
The House being informed, that Richard Janeway, according to the Order of Yesterday, attended at the Door, to answer the Matter of the Breach of Privilege of this House, complained of, in printing a Paper, intituled, An Address agreed upon at a Committee of the House, without any Order of the House for the doing thereof; he was called in to the Bar; and examined concerning the Matter aforesaid: And thereupon owned, that he having a Copy thereof, carried the same to Mr. Frazier the Licenser, to be licensed, and entered it at Stationers Hall; and thereupon printed it: But refused to give any Account, from whom he had such Copy.
The House being informed, that there is a treasonable and scandalous Libel spread abroad, intituled, A short History of the Convention; or, New-christen'd Parliament; One of which was delivered in, and read;
Resolved, That his Majesty be humbly desired from this House, by such Members thereof as are of his Majesty's most honourable Privy Council, to propose a Reward to such Persons as shall discover the Author, Printer, or Publisher of a treasonable and scandalous Libel, intituled, A short History of the Convention; or, Newchristen'd Parliament.
Corresponding with late King James.
Mr. Speaker, The Lords have passed a Bill, intituled, An Act making and declaring it to be Treason, to keep any Intelligence or Correspondence with the late King James the Second; to which they desire the Concurrence of this House.
Supply Bill; Poll Tax.
Supply Bill; collecting Revenue.
Removing Papists from London.
Resolved, That his Majesty be humbly desired from this House, by such Members as are of his Majesty's most honourable Privy Council, to issue out a Proclamation to command all Papists to depart from the Cities of London and Westminster, and the Parts adjacent, according to the Act lately passed for that Purpose; upon Pain of being committed, as Persons suspected to be conspiring against the Government.