Journal of the House of Lords: Volume 12, 1666-1675. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1767-1830.
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DIE Mercurii, 29 die Aprilis.
Bill to continue the one against seditious Conventicles.
Sir W. Penn's Answer to the Articles of Impeachment against him.
This Day Sir William Pen, according to the Order of this House the 27th Instant, being appointed to put in his Answer to the Impeachment of the House of Commons against him, was brought to the Bar, by the Gentleman Usher, and having kneeled until the Lord Keeper commanded him to stand up, he humbly presented his said Answer; which was read, as followeth:
"The humble Answer of Sir William Penn Knight, Defendant, to the Articles of Impeachment exhibited against him by the Commons of England assembled in Parliament, in the Name of themselves and of all the Commons of England, for several High Crimes and Misdemeanors committed by him.
"The said Defendant, by Protestation, saving to himself all Advantages of Exceptions that may be taken to the manifold Incertainties and Insufficiencies of the said Articles of Impeachment, for Answer to so much thereof as he this Defendant is advised is any way material for him to make Answer to:
"To the Second Article of the said Impeachment, he this Defendant faith, That, on or about the Fourteenth Day of the said Month of September, this Defendant did go on board the said Slothany, in Company of the said Sir William Berkeley, being required so to do by the said Earl of Sandwich; but doth deny that he did then, or at any other Time, go on board the said Slothany on Pursuance of the said Conspiracy in the said First Article of the said Impeachment mentioned, or that he this Defendant did command the said Captain Worden to give Way to, or permit, the said Sir William Berkley to take away any of the said Goods, or that this Defendant sent any Men on board the said Slothany, to assist the said Sir William Berkley in breaking open the Hatchways of the said Ship, and taking out of the said Ship and carrying away any Bales of Silk, Mace, or other Goods whatsoever.
"To the Third Article of the said Impeachment, this Defendant doth answer and say, That true it is, that Nineteen Bales and One Half of Silk, Ten Bales of Cinnamon, Twelve Cernes of Mace, Two Bags of Nutmegs, Eight Bags of Pepper, and One Puncheon of Cloves, did, some Time after the same were taken out of the said Phænix, or the said Slothany, by Way of Distribution among the Flag Officers, (fn. 1) come into the Hands and Possession of him this Defendant, and were by him, as his Share and Proportion, sold and converted by him this Defendant to his own Use, by virtue of the said Orders of the said Earl of Sandwich, bearing Date the Fifteenth and One and Twentieth of September One Thousand Six Hundred Sixty Five, in the Fourth Article of the said Impeachment mentioned; and by virtue of His Majesty's said Warrant, dated the Seventeenth of October, One Thousand Six Hundred Sixty Five, in the said Fourth Article likewise mentioned; and by virtue of His Majesty's Letters of Privy Seal, bearing Date the Twenty Sixth Day of January, in the Seventeenth Year of His Majesty's Reign: But this Defendant doth deny that he had or sold, to his own Use, any other Goods than those abovementioned; or that the said Goods, so by him sold, were taken out of the said Phænix, or the said Slothany, by him this Defendant, or any other Person or Persons by his Appointment or Procurement.
"To the Fourth Article of the said Impeachment, this Defendant answers, That the said Orders of the Earl of Sandwich, in the said Fourth Article of the said Impeachment mentioned, were not obtained from the said Earl by this Defendant, or by the Procurement of this Defendant, to colour any Fraud or Embezzlement done or committed by him this Defendant, or for any Purpose whatsoever. And this Defendant doth deny that His Majesty's Warrant, in the said Fourth Article of the said Impeachment mentioned, was by him this Defendant, or by any other Person by his Direction, procured from His Majesty. And this Defendant doth further deny that he, or any other by his Appointment, did take the said Four Bales or Eight Suckles out of the said Phænix, or the said Slothany, or that he did sell or dispose of the same, or any Part thereof, to his own Use, Benefit, or Advantage. And this Defendant doth deny that he did take, sell, or dispose of, any greater Quantity of Goods than was contained either in the said Order of the said Earl of Sandwich, or His Majesty's said Warrant in the said Fourth Article mentioned, other than is in this Defendant's Answer to the Fourth Article of the Impeachment (fn. 1) expressed. Without that, that any other Matter, Thing or Things, Article, or Allegation, in the said Articles of Impeachment contained, material or effectual in the Law to be answered unto by this Defendant, and not here in this his Answer sufficiently answered to, confessed, and avoided, denied, or traversed, is true.
Message to H. C. with a Copy of it.
Cheek and Mildmay, concerning the Barony of Fitzwalter.
ORDERED, That Saturday next is appointed to hear what Mr. Attorney General, or any other Counsel on His Majesty's Behalf, shall think fit to offer, concerning the Title to the Barony of Fitzwalter; and in case no Counsel shall then desire to be heard, this House will proceed to give Judgement upon what is already before them.