Journal of the House of Lords: Volume 13, 1675-1681. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1767-1830.
This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.
DIE Lunæ, 15 die Novembris.
Domini tam Spirituales quam Temporales præsentes fuerunt:
L. President Speaker.
This Day the Lord President of the Council supplied the Place of the Lord Chancellor.
L. Coventry takes the Oaths.
This Day George Lord Coventry took the Oaths of Allegiance and Supremacy, and made and subscribed the Declaration, in Pursuance of the Act for the more effectual preserving the King's Person and Government, by disabling Papists from fitting in either House of Parliament.
Message from H. C. with a Bill.
A Message was brought from the House of Commons, by the Lord Russell and others; who said,
"He was commanded, by the Knights, Citizens, and Burgesses of the House of Commons, to present to their Lordships, a Bill, intituled, "An Act for securing of the Protestant Religion, by disabling James Duke of Yorke to inherit the Imperial Crown of England and Ireland, and the Dominions and Territories thereunto belonging;" to which Bill their Lordships Concurrence is desired."
Bill to exclude the D. of York from the Crown.
Hodie 1a vice lecta est Billa, "An Act for securing of the Protestant Religion, by disabling James Duke of Yorke to inherit the Imperial Crown of England and Ireland, and the Dominions and Territories thereunto belonging."
After Debate, the House was adjourned into a Committee for a freer Debate.
The House was resumed.
It was propounded, That the Question may be put for the rejecting this Bill.
The Question was put, "Whether the Question for rejecting this Bill shall be now put?"
It was Resolved in the Affirmative.
Then the Question was put, "Whether this Bill shall be rejected?"
It was Resolved in the Affirmative.
Protest against it.
These Lords following, before the abovesaid Question was put, desired Leave to enter their Dissents, if the Question was carried in the Affirmative, and accordingly do enter their Dissents:
"Anglesey, C. P. S.
"Stamford. Essex. Ra. Eure.
"C. Cornwallis. J. Lovelace.
"Pagett. Delamer. "Howard.
"North & Grey. Grey.
"Because rejected upon the First Reading,
L. Stafford's Petition for his Witnesses, &c. and for a longer Day.
Upon reading the humble Petition of William Viscount of Stafford;
"That he received, on Friday Night last, an Order, That his Trial was by their Lordships appointed to be on the 30th of this Month. He doth most humbly beseech their Lordships, to command all the Peers that are absent to attend upon their Lordships at his Trial. He doth likewise most submissively shew unto their Lordships, that Mr. Ralph Lawson is now detained at Rye, though an Habeas Corpus be sent, for to bring him to Town, from the Court of King's Bench, which is not obeyed; and that he is so necessary for his Lordship's Trial, that he is no Ways able to make his just Defence before their Lordships without him; his Lordship not knowing the Names of several of his Witnesses; and for other Reasons belonging unto his Trial. Likewise humbly sheweth, that he fears that he can no Way have his Witnesses so soon in Town.
"Therefore, with Submission, most humbly beseecheth their Lordships, to grant him some Days longer for his Trial, and to grant him an Order for his Witnesses to appear; and to assign him Mr. Wallope, Mr. Saunders, and Mr. Hunt, to be of his Counsel."
Habeas Corpus for Lawson, his Solicitor, in Prison.
Hereupon the House made these following Orders:
"It appearing, by the Petition of the Lord Viscount of Stafford, now a Prisoner in The Tower, and shortly to come upon his Trial upon the Impeachment of the House of Commons, That Mr. Ralph Lawson, who is a Person necessary for his Lord's Defence at his Trial, is detained Prisoner at Rye, and that an Habeas Corpus hath been issued for bringing him up, which hath not been obeyed: It is this Day ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That His Majesty's Writ of Habeas Corpus in due Form be forthwith issued, for bringing up the said Ralph Lawson, in order to the Service aforesaid."
The Clerk to issue Orders of Course for Witnesses.
"Upon reading of the Petition of the Lord Viscount of Stafford, praying (among other Things) that he may have an Order for Witnesses to be made use of in his Lordship's Defence upon his Trial, now appointed: It is ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That the Clerk of the Parliaments shall issue out an Order, or Orders, for summoning such Persons as the said Viscount Stafford shall from Time to Time send in the Names of, to be summoned as Witnesses for the Purpose aforesaid."
The House being informed, "That a Person was without, to inform Matters concerning the Discovery of the horrid Plot and Conspiracy;" Thomas Dangerfield was called in; and, having his Oath given him at the Bar, made a full Information of what he knew concerning the Plot.
He being asked, "Whether the Earl of Peterborow was present, when the Duke of Yorke gave him the Twenty Guineas?" He answered, "He was." "Dangerfield desired, "That the Lady Powis, Nevill, and Singe, and Stamford who is Agent for the Duke of Newburgh, may be restrained from the Liberty they take, of doing much Mischief."
ORDERED, That Thomas Dangerfeild put his Narrative into Writing, which he made now at the Bar; and Sir Sam. Clerke is appointed to take it.
Which he did, and delivered the same to the Clerk of the Parliament, and is entered as followeth:
"The Information of Thomas Dangerfeild Gent. given in upon Oath before the House of Lords, the Fifteenth Day of November, in the Two and Thirtieth Year of the Reign of His Majesty King Charles the Second, &c. Annoque Domini 1680.
"Who saith, That about the Months of September or October 1679, when Mrs. Cellier and this Informant waited on the Lord Peterborough, to be introduced to his Highness the Duke of Yorke, his Lordship enquired of this Informant, "if the Lady Powis had given him this Informant any Directions how to discourse the Duke?" This Informant replied, "she had." Then the said Lord of Peterborough desired to know what they were. Whereupon this Informant shewed his Lordship a little Book, in which was contained a Scheme, and the pretended Discovery which this Informant had made in the Presbyterian Plot; which Book his Lordship had carefully perused, and finding some Omissions therein, he ordered this Informant to write, while his Lordship did dictate to this Informant, these Words following; (videlicet,) "That the Presbyterian Party intended to make an Insurrection in the North, and so to join with an Army of the Scotts." Immediately after this, his Lordship took the said Mrs. Celier and this Informant into the Duke's Closet at Whitehall, where we both kissed his Hand; and this Informant he took from the Ground (for this Informant was kneeling). After which, this Informant gave his Highness the aforementioned little Books, which he (after a short Perusal thereof) thanked this Informant for, and also for his Diligence in the Catholic Cause; and did advise this Informant to go on, and wished good Success to all this Informant's Undertakings; adding in these very Words, (videlicet,) "That the Presbyterian Plot was a Thing of most mighty Consequence, and, if well managed, would be very conducible to the Safety of the Catholic Cause; and I do not question but the Effects of it will answer our Expectation, especially in the Northern Parts, where, I am well assured, the major Part of the Gentry are my Friends, and have given sufficient Demonstration of their Affections to me, as also of their Intentions to prosecute this Presbyterian Plot to the utmost; for they are no Strangers to the Design." Immediately after this, his Royal Highness ordered both Mrs. Cellier and this Informant (in the Hearing of the Lord Peterborough, who was Privy to the whole Discourse) "to be very careful of what we communicated to the Persons who were to be the Witnesses in that new Plot, left we should be caught in the Subornation, and so bring a terrible Odium upon the Catholics, and make ourselves uncapable of any further Service." After this, the Duke informed the said Mrs. Cellier and this Informant, "that, in a Month or Two's Time, the Commissions would be ready; but ordered us, in the mean Time, to bring our Parts to bear with the Commissions; and particularly ordered this Informant to find out some Persons (as there were enough such among the Catholics as elsewhere) which were fit to be trusted, and that should accept of such Commissions, which should be delivered them by a Person for that Purpose, but not to be known by them to be any other than a Presbyterian; so that, when Occasion should require, they might be ready with those which we then had to swear in the Plot, and that the Presbyterians were raising Forces against the King and Government, and had given out Commissions to that Purpose." And, in order to this, this Informant did in some short Time after procure one Bedford, Curtice, Grey, Hill, Hopkins, and others, to accept of such Commissions when they should be ready; whose Business in the mean Time was, to spread Reports in the Coffee Houses, "That the Popish Plot was a Contrivance of the Presbyterians, &c."
"Now, for our Encouragement in the Prosecution of that sham Plot, the Duke promised, "that he would take Care that Money should not be wanting." But ordered the said Mrs. Cellier and this Informant to use all the Expedition the Thing would allow, to make a Discovery thereof to the King; after which," the Duke said, "the Catholic Party would be eased of the Charge, in regard he was sure it would be defrayed some other Way."
"Then the Duke made divers Vows and Execrations to stand by us in the Thing, and engaged on his Honour to be our Rewarder; adding, "that such considerable Services ought not to be slighted;" and further promised, "that to whose Lot soever it should happen to be imprisoned, according to their Fidelity and Steadfastness in the Cause, so much the more should their Reward be augmented; and that all Care possible should be used to support and preserve them;" but particularly desired this Informant, "to keep up to the courageous and active Character which his Highness had heard of him this Informant." All which this Informant promised to do. Whereupon the said Mrs. Cellier and this Informant withdrew to the Lord Peterborough's Lodgings; where the said Mrs. Cellier and this Informant continued till his Lordship had introduced Sir Robert Peyton to the Duke; which being done, his Lordship left the Duke and Sir Robert Peyton together as he said, and came to the said Mrs. Cellier and this Informant; where, among other Discourse, his Lordship told this Informant, "I had a great Opportunity of making my Fortune, what I would myself, if I would but follow the Advice of his Master the Duke of Yorke, who (as his Lordship said) would certainly be my King in a very short Time;" adding, "that I must be resolute in my Undertakings; for, says he, the Duke much affects Resolution, but hates mortally the timorous Man."
"Then this Informant answered his Lordship, "that he this Informant valued not his Life, provided that to lose it would be serviceable to the Duke's Interest." At which Expression the said Lord Peterborough seemed fully satisfied; and from that Time called this Informant "Captain Willoughby;" and, at our coming away, his Lordship gave particular Order to his Servants, "that at what Time soever, Day or Night, either Mrs. Cellier or this Informant should come to speak with his Lordship, we should be admitted." And so we parted.
"Some short Time after, this Informant went to wait on his Lordship, from the Lady Powis's, at Midnight, to desire him "to move the Duke to get this Informant with all Expedition to the King, for that he this Informant was ready."
"About Four Days after this, his Lordship the Earl of Peterborough sent for this Informant, and took him, this Informant, to the Duke again (who was in his Closet at Whitehall). And the Duke told this Informant, "that he this Informant must prepare himself to wait on the King, to give His Majesty a more particular Account of the Presbyterian Plot than what the little Book made Mention of (which Book the Duke said he had given to the King); and that he had so ordered the Matter, that this Informant should be furnished with Money, to enable him, this Informant, in the Prosecution thereof." But his Highness charged this Informant to consider well his Story before he waited on the King.
"Then the Duke told this Informant, "That he, this Informant, had gained, by his Diligence, a good Reputation among the Catholics; and that he, this Informant, should highly merit by his Services to that Cause;" adding, "that he this Informant should in a short Time see the Catholic Religion flourish in these Kingdoms, and Heresy torn up by the Roots; and that he had heard of the Proposals that had been made to me this Informant by the Lords Powis and Arundell, about taking off the King, and of my Refusal; as also of what I had accepted touching the Lord Shaftsbury, and of all my Transactions in the Presbyterian Plot;" saying in these very Words, (videlicet), "If you value the Religion you profess, my Interest (as you say you do), and your own future Happiness, take my Advice, and depend upon my Honour and Interest for your Advancement; for, Sir, you look like a Man of Courage and Wit, and therefore less Discourse may serve with you than another; so that, if you'll but move by the Measures which I will give you, you shall not only escape with Safety, but be rewarded according to the Greatness of your Actions."
"To all this, this Informant replied, "I would stand and fall in the Defence of the Roman Catholic Religion and his Highness's Service;" and was not a little concerned for my Refusal to kill the King, whom I was then satisfied, by my Ghostly Father, stood condemned as an Heretic. But this I did offer; "if his Highness would commannd me to attempt, I would not fail, either to accomplish it, or lose my Life." Upon which, the Duke gave me Twenty Guineas; and said, "if I would but be vigorous in what I had undertaken already, he would so order it, that my Life should not be in the least Danger; adding in these Words, (videlicet,) "We are not to have Men taken in such Actions, but to have them make an effectual Dispatch, and be gone." Upon which, this Informant took his Leave.
"Some short Time after this, when this Informant was ready to convey the Letter into Colonel Mansell's Chamber, he this Informant went to the Lord Peterborough, who brought this Informant to the Duke; to whom this Informant told, "that he was ready to fix the Letters in the Colonel's Chamber." To which his Highness answered, "I (this Informant) must make Haste, that I might be empowered to make a general Search of the like Nature;" for, said the Duke in these Words, videlicet, "since I saw you last, the Lady Powis has informed me, that there are Abundance of Letters, and the Witnesses ready; so that it is now high Time to begin." By this Time there was some great Man came to wait on the Duke: So this Informant withdrew.
"About Four Days after this, when this Informant had been pressing earnestly with Mr. Secretary Coventry for a Warrant, and could not prevail, this Informant went to the Lord Peterborough's, and desired his Lordship, "to make Application to the Duke, to use some Means for a Warrant." To which his Lordship answered, "'Twas my Fault there was not a Warrant granted; that the Duke was sensible of my neglecting to make an Affidavit; and that he did now begin to doubt my Courage."
"This Informant further saith, That, in or about the Months of June, July, or August, 1679, the Countess of Powis sent this Informant with a Letter to the Lord Privy Seal, who was then at his Lordship's House in Kensington; but the Contents of that Letter this Informant remembereth not, more than that it was, "to pray some Favour in the Behalf of one Anderson, alias Muson, a Priest, and then in The King's Bench." At the same Time this Informant also delivered to his Lordship some Papers of one Stroud, who was then a Prisoner in The King's Bench, and was reported to know something of the Plot; which Papers contained Matters of Fact, drawn up to render Strowd's Testimony invalid, in case he should make any Discovery; and, by that Lady's Order, this Informant was to pray his Lordship to take the Papers; so that, if Stroud should be sent for on Examination before the Council, that his Lordship would produce them to stop his Evidence; which his Lordship promised to do. But Strowde was not sent for; and so the Papers were of no Use. But this Informant supposes they may still remain with his Lordship.
"At the same Time, this Informant did, by Order from the Lady Powis, inform his Lordship, "that the Presbyterian Plot would be ready for Discovery in a Month's Time." To which his Lordship answered, "that he this Informant should tell the Lady Powis, that he was of Opinion, that a Month would be too soon, in regard Things then moved with too much Violence for such an Affair to have any Success." So this Informant took his Leave.
"Some short Time after, this Informant went, by the Lord Powis' Order, with another Letter to his Lordship, the Contents of which this Informant never knew; but was ordered to acquaint his Lordship that the Presbyterian Plot still went on; and that we had divers Letters and Witnesses ready to lay open the Matter when it should be thought fit." To which his Lordship answered, "He feared the Lords in The Tower were too vigorous in that Design; but promised, when the vigorous Prosecution against the Catholics was somewhat abated, he did intend to move it to the King and Council; adding, "that if Things of that Nature were but well timed, they could not fail of Success." So this Informant took his Leave.
"Some Time after, Mrs. Cellier and this Informant went to wait on his Lordship at Kensington, where they both had Admittance. Then it was, that Mrs. Cellier informed his Lordship, "that she came in the Name of her great Master the Duke of Yorke, and at the most earnest Request of the Lords in The Tower, to pray his Lordship to use some Means that the Proceedings against the Catholics might be more easy; and that the Presbyterian Plot might be discovered." Then his Lordship desired her, "to let the Lords in The Tower know, that he was not idle in the Consideration of their Safety; for (added his Lordship in these Words) I myself have discoursed lately with all the great Ministers of our Party; and the Lord Peterborough has done the same. And we both find, there is Favour intended; but we must wait the Time; for Things of that Nature must be moved gently, or the whole Royal Party may be destroyed at once; for there are many Eyes upon us."
"Then Mrs. Cellier informed his Lordship, "that Sir George Wakeman's Trial had broken the Ice;" and of the great Difficulty there was in prevailing with the Lord Chief Justice Scroggs to come over; and also of the Meeting that was between the Lady Powis and the Lord Chief Justice Scroggs. To which his Lordship replied, "that the Lord Chief Justice had taken more Time to consider of his Part than Five other far greater Men had done (who they were this Informant knoweth not); and that his Lordship was forced to shew the Lord Chief Justice the Duke of Yorke's Letter, before he would believe any Thing. Nay, (said his Lordship) notwithstanding this, I was forced to get a particular Letter sent him from the Duke, before he would make any Promise. Truly, Madam, (said his Lordship) 'tis no small Pains I take, to serve the Duke, and their Lordships; and that you may assure them."
"Then Mrs. Cellier acquainted his Lordship, "that Dugdale was come about, and intended to throw himself at the Duke's Feet, with a Recantation of all he had sworn in the Plot; and, said she (the said Mrs. Cellier), I am, in the Name of the Lords, to pray your Lordship he may be secured in your House, as being a Place more proper than any other.
"To this his Lordship answered, "he was glad to hear of Dugdale's Ingenuity in that Affair; and did assure Mrs. Cellier, that Dugdale should be entertained in his House; and that his Lordship's Priest should be his Companion, so that it should be impossible for him to do any more Mischief." But his Lordship desired, she (the said Mrs. Cellier) would tell the Lords they must use all the Means imaginable to get him sent beyond Sea, lest a too strict Enquiry should be made after him.
"To which Mrs. Cellier replied thus: "My Lord, we do not intend he shall stay in your Lordship's House above Nine or Ten Days; for, though he might do us Service by a general Recantation, yet we can never think him safe till we have got him into the Inquisition; for such Persons are to be encouraged, not trusted." Upon this, his Lordship sent a Compliment to the Lords in The Tower; and so we came away.
Countess of Powis' Case to be stated.
ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That it be referred to the Lords Committees for examining Matters relating to the late horrid Plot and Conspiracy, to examine and state the Case of the Countess of Powis, and of her being at Liberty, and make Report thereof unto the House.
ORDERED, That the Committee for Examination be revived, and sit To-morrow Morning, at 8 of the Clock.
Nevill and Singe summoned.
ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That Mr. Nevill, alias Payne, and Mr. Singe, be, and are hereby, required to appear at the Bar of this House To-morrow Morning, at Ten of the Clock, to answer respectively to such Matters as shall there be objected against them; and hereof they may not fail.
Lords absent; summoned.
ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That the Lord Chancellor do forthwith write Letters to all the Peers and Prelates, Members of this House, who have not attended the House of Peers since the Beginning of this Parliament, requiring the said Lords to come and attend His Majesty's Service in the House of Peers; intimating in the said Letters, "that such of the said Lords as are within Fifty Miles of this Place, do give their Attendance within One Week after the Receipt of the Letters to them respectively sent; and that those Lords that are at a greater Distance from this Place give their Attendance here within Ten Days next after the Receipt of the said Letters; and that every of these Lords, who through Age or Sickness cannot come up, do, within the Times to them respectively limited for their Attendance, send Two credible Persons to attend this House, to avow upon Oath at the Bar the true Cause why such Lords cannot attend this House according to this Summons."
Vise. Stafford, Counsel assigned.
ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That Mr. Wallop, Mr. Saunders, and Mr. Hunt, be, and are hereby, at the Desire of the Lord Viscount Stafford, now Prisoner in The Tower, assigned to be of Counsel for his Lordship, in order to his Defence in Matters of Law upon his Trial upon the Impeachment of the House of Commons, whereby he is charged with High Treason; and that the said Mr. Wallop, Mr. Saunders, and Mr. Hunt, may have free Access to the said Viscount Stafford for that Purpose.
It was moved, "That there is a Member that sits in the House, who is accused of Treason by Mr. Dangerfeild, in his Narrative to this House."
And the Earl of Peterborough was named, who was sitting in his Place; and it was desired he might be committed to safe Custody.
E. of Peterborough, Debate upon Dangerfield's Information against him.
The Earl of Peterborough referred himself to the Pleasure of the House; and desired to have a Copy of his Accusation, and a Time to consider of it.
The Earl of Peterborow voluntarily withdrew himself.
The House proceeded in the Debate of the Earl of Peterborowe's Business.
It was ORDERED, That he should be called to his Place.
And the Question was put, "Whether he should be asked what he can say to what Mr. Dangerfeild hath said at the Bar against him; and what he can say why he should not be committed?"
Then the Earl of Peterborow was called to his Place; and the Lord President told him, "that he was commanded to ask him, what he can say why he should not be committed."
The Earl of Peterborow having been heard; the House laid the Debate aside.
L. Byron to have a Writ of Summons.
ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That the Lord Chancellor be, and is hereby, desired to send a Writ of Summons to Parliament, to William Lord Byron.
Charles Howard versus D. of Norfolk.
Upon reading the Petition of Charles Howard; shewing, "That the Marquis of Dorchester having transferred his legal Interest in the Barony of Greystock in Cumberland (for which he was a Trustee) to his Grace the Duke of Norfolke, subject to the same Trust for the Petitioner, as it was in the said Marquis's Hand, which Trust the Duke of Norfolk refuseth to perform; and praying, that he may have Leave to proceed against the Duke of Norfolk in Chancery, his Grace being only a Trustee in the present Case?"
It is ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That the said Charles Howard do forthwith give Notice of his Petition to the Duke of Norfolk; who is hereby appointed to put in an Answer thereunto, on Monday the 29th Day of this Instant November, at Ten of the Clock in the Forenoon.
Fletcher versus Dr. King, in Error.
Upon reading the Petition of John King, Doctor in Physic; shewing, "That Christopher Fletcher hath, by Writ of Error, brought into this Court a Judgement given in the Court of King's Bench on the Behalf of the Petitioner, but hath not prosecuted the same according to the Rules of this Court; and therefore praying, that the Transcript of the Record of the said Judgement may be remitted:"
It is ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That the said Christopher Fletcher be, and is hereby, required peremptorily to assign Errors within One Week next after the Date hereof; or the Transcript of the said Judgement shall be remitted.
Sir Timothy Baldwin delivered in the Information which he had taken of William Lewis, by Order of this House; which Information was in the Presence of the said William Lewis read; who acknowledged the same to be true.
The Contents of which Information is as followeth:
"The Information of William Lewis, sworn before the House of Peers, this 13th of November, 1680.
Lewis's Information concerning the Plot.
"Who saith, That, coming out of Sir John Morton's Service, and being acquainted from his Childhood with one Walter Jones, a Priest, sometimes belonging to Weld-House, he applied himself to the said Jones, to help him to a Service; who carried this Informant to Groves's House, at The Golden Ball in Yorke Street, in Covent Garden; which Grove was since executed. And this Informant and Mr. Jones went to The Windmill Taverne, in Bridges Street, which was about the Time when the last Army for Flanders was upon raising, by the Appointment of Grove; and thither he came also, and promised this Informant all Kindness in his Power; desiring this Informant to come to his House, which this Informant often did. And, after about Four Months intimate Acquaintance with the said Grove, this Informant told Mr. Jones, "he had not been at Confession a long Time." Upon which, he advised this Informant to go to Mr. Harcoat, in Groves's House, where there was an Altar up One Pair of Stairs. And, after this Informant had made his Confession to Mr. Harcourt, Groves told this Informant, "that if he would be ruled by him the said Groves, he this Informant should be made for ever." Whereunto this Informant replied, "It was possible he would." And then the said Groves took up a Pistol, which lay upon the Left Hand of the Altar: and said, "This is that which must do the Business." During which Discourse, the said Harcourt, Fenwick, the said Jones, and Pickering, with others, who made up about the Number of Seven, turned their Backs, as if they would not take Notice of the Discoursed aforesaid; and then the said Grove told this Informant, "that he would not tell what the Business was, until this Informant had taken the Sacrament to be secret:" Which this Informant then took, the said Groves and Pickering taking the Sacrament at the same Time. Which Sacrament being over, the Altar, Chalice, and other Materials belonging to the Service, were taken down; and so the Persons aforesaid sat down about the Table in the same Room. And then Groves said to this Informant, "You have taken the Sacrament of Secrecy; and so have we;" meaning himself and Pickering. This Informant replied, "Yes;" promising to be secret. Whereupon the said Groves further said, "What I desire you to effect with me is, to kill the King; and you shall venture no further than I and Pickering." This Informant answered, "Kill the King! for what?" Then all or most of the Company then present answered, "To kill the King, being a Heretic, or any other Heretic, to propagate the Roman Catholic Religion, is no Sin." And then they proceeded to make great Promises of large Gratuities to this Informant, so as he would venture therein as they did; and they did intimate One Thousand Pounds at the least, and that the best Persons in England would engage for it. And asked this Informant, "if he knew the Lord Peters and the Lord Stafford?" To which this Informant answered, "He did." Then Groves scratched his Head, seeming a little concerned at this Informant's Knowledge of those Two Lords. Then they asked, "Whether this Informant knew the Lord Arundell, the Lord Powis, and the Lord Bellasis?" To which this Informant answered, "He did not." And after some other Discourse to the same Effect, the Company parted; and Groves desired this Informant to send to him where he should meet him; and Jones did, after the Meeting aforesaid, say, "That Kelly was One of the Number aforesaid." The next Day this Informant sent to Groves, to come to him to a Tavern near his own House; and thence went to The Plow Alehouse at Somersett Water Gate, where the said Jones met him. And this Informant there told Groves, "he had bought a Horse, to go into the Earl of Oxford's Guards; and if he should omit his Opportunity, and go along with him and miscarry, it would be to this Informant's Prejudice." And thereupon the said Groves answered, "that this Informant need not fear any Thing, but should be made a Man for ever; for you shall have the best Persons in England engage for what is promised unto you." Whereto this Informant replied, "How shall I be sure of that? I have yet nothing but the bare Word." Whereupon the said Groves took a Manual and his Beads out of his Pocket; and swore, "a Person of Quality should come himself, and engage his Honour that what was promised should be performed;" and directed this Informant the next Day to meet him in Somersett House Chapell; and if that were not open, to walk about the Coach Houses, about Nine in the Morning;" which was in or about the Month of May, 1678, being about Three or Four Months before the Plot was discovered. And the said Groves then met this Informant before the said Coach Houses, and took this Informant with him to the said Plow Alehouse; saying, "the Person of Quality would not come till the Afternoon;" and desired this Informant to meet him at Four in that Afternoon, in the same Place; where he met this Informant, and conducted him to the Piazza, or arched Place, in the Garden of Somerset House; and there was Harcourt, Fenwick, and Pickering, who walked with this Informant and Groves about Two Hours; at which Time a Person came down the Stairs, and asked, "Which was the Man?" To which Groves answered, "This is he;" shewing this Informant. Upon which, the said Person, whom this Informant knew to be the Lord Arundell, though they pretended was the Lord Bellasis; and the said Lord Arundell took this Informant from the Company, and told this Informant, "that he was sensible that they had told this Informant what he was to do." Whereupon this Informant asked his Lordship, "What he was to do?" Who replied in these Words, "You are to go along with Groves, to assassinate the King;" adding, "you shall have Fifteen Hundred Pounds paid you as soon as the Business is effected; and if you will tarry in England, you shall have a Commission in the Catholic Army which is to be raised; otherwise you shall be safely transported into France, or where you please;" and thereupon gave this Informant a Guinea; and so my Lord left this Informant. And then Groves asked this Informant, "Whether he was satisfied?" And this Informant answered, "Yes;" and then repeated all the Discourse that had passed between the said Lord and this Informant. Upon which, Harcourt told this Informant, "that if he did not like going into France, he should go to Florence, where the said Lord Arundell had great Interest." And this Informant saith, That the Lord Arundell he means by this Information is squint-eyed, and hath a Kind of a Wart upon his Nose. And this Informant further faith, That as to what he gave the House of Peers an Account of, as to Mrs. Elliot and Mr. Thompson, concerning some Circumstances relating to the Duke of Yorke, and the Five Guineas received by Mr. Thompson's Hand by this Informant near St. James's House, this Informant refers himself to the Informations taken before Mr. Justice Rich. And further at present faith not.
Signed and acknowledged, in the Presence of
William Lewis confessed he was a Roman Catholic; and humbly desired that His Majesty would please to grant him a general Pardon, according to His Majesty's Proclamation.
Whereupon this Order was made:
Address for Lewis's Pardon.
"ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That the Lords with White Staves do attend His Majesty, humbly to desire Him, from this House, That His Majesty will be graciously pleased to grant His Royal Pardon to William Lewis, who hath made at the Bar of this House a considerable Discovery of the late horrid Plot and Conspiracy."
Then Francisco de Faria's Information was read, in his Presence; who averred the same to be true.
Which Information is as followeth:
De Faria's further Information concerning the Plot.
"Francisco de Ferreia, of the Parish of St. Giles's in the Feilds, in the County of Midd. maketh Oath, That, last Summer was Twelvemonth, William Lewis, examined at the Bar of the House of Lords this 13th Day of November, 1680, did usually resort to the Portugall Ambassador's House, to whom this Deponent was Interpreter; and the Reason of such his Resort was, for that a Brother of the said William Lewis attended this Deponent as his Footman; and when the said Ambassador was leaving England, and paying his Servants, he refused to give any Thing to this Deponent's said Footman, for that he was so drunken a Fellow; and the said William Lewis prevailing with this Deponent to petition the Ambassador for Wages for his said Brother, the Ambassador denied him. And this Deponent telling the said William Lewis of the Ambassador's Denial, the said William Lewis took his said Brother that had been this Deponent's Footman, and said to him, "Come, you shall want nothing, if you will join with me." And this Deponent further maketh Oath, That, since the Time aforesaid that the said William Lewis resorted to the Portugall Ambassador's, this Deponent never saw the said William Lewis, to the best of this Deponent's Remembrance, until this Morning of this 13th October, that this Deponent enquiring for Colonel Warcupp in the Lobby of the Lords House, the said William Lewis spake to this Deponent.
"Francisco de Faria."
Fur. 13° Die Novembris,
ORDERED, That the House be adjourned into a Grand Committee To-morrow Morning, to consider of Heads for effectual securing the Protestant Religion.
Dominus Præses Concilii declaravit præsens Parliamentum continuandum esse usque in diem Martis, 16um diem instantis Novembris, hora nona Aurora, Dominis sic decernentibus.
Hitherto examined, this 25th of November, 1680, by us,
P. Bath & Wells.