Journal of the House of Lords: Volume 15, 1691-1696. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1767-1830.
This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.
DIE Lunæ, 19 Decembris.
Gay's Cause in Chancery, Proceedings there approved of.
The Lord Marquis of Halifax reported from the Lords Committees for Privileges, to whom was referred the Petition of Martha Gay, "That they had heard Counsel for her, upon the several Complaints set forth in her Petition, against some Proceedings in the Court of Chancery: First, as to Security in general; then as to the Two Thousand Pounds Security; the Commitment of her Solicitor Mr. Ford; and as to an Injunction mentioned in her Petition likewise referred to the said Committee: That they had sent for, and heard, Sir Will'm Rawlinson One of the Lords Commissioners of the Great Seal of England, to each of these Points; who gave the Committee such full and satisfactory Reasons for what the Court of Chancery had done in this Case, that the Committee were fully satisfied therewith."
L. Villiers's Bill.
Hodie 3a vice lecta est Billa, intituled, "An Act for the clearing and removing some Doubts which may arise in an Act of Parliament, intituled, An Act for the vesting several Manors, Lands, and Rents, in the Counties of Lincoln, Berks, and Devon, in Trustees, to be sold, for the buying other Manors and Lands, to be settled for the same or the like Uses as those to be sold are now settled."
Sir G. Parker's Bill.
Message to H. C. with these Bills:
Warden of The Fleet, Office of, for selling to pay Debts, Bill:
Upon reading the Petition of Colonel Baldwin Leighton, claiming a Title to the Office of Warden of The Fleete; and praying that he may be heard, by his Counsel, upon his said Petition, before the Second Reading of the Bill, intituled, "An Act for the Sale of the Office of The Fleete and Mansion-House, where the said Office is now kept, and Thirteen Houses adjoining; and the Office of the Custody of the Palaces at Westminster, and the Shops in Westm'r Hall, to the said Office belonging, for Payment of Debts:"
Colonel Leighton to be heard against it.
It is ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That the Petitioner shall be heard, by Counsel, as desired, on Saturday the Seventh Day of January next, at Ten of the Clock in the Forenoon; and that the Petitioner do cause Notice hereof to be given to the King's Counsel, who may be heard, if they think fit, at the Time aforesaid.
Dowley versus Bagnall.
Upon hearing Counsel this Day, at the Bar, upon the Petition and Appeal of John Dowley, from a Decree made in the Court of Chancery, the First Day of May, One Thousand Six Hundred Eighty-nine, and a Confirmation thereof the Sixteenth Day of December, One Thousand Six Hundred Ninety-one, on the Behalf of George Bagnall, surviving Executor of George Bagnall deceased; as also upon the Answer of George Bagnall put in thereunto:
After due Consideration had of what was offered by Counsel thereupon, it is ORDERED and Adjudged, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That the said Petition and Appeal of John Dowley shall be, and is hereby, dismissed this House; and that the Decree and Confirmation thereof, made on the Behalf of George Bagnall shall be, and is hereby, affirmed.
The Earl of Westmorland reported from the Committee, the Bill, intituled, "An Act for the settling of the Manor of Kingsnoth, for the enabling Barnham Powell Esquire to make Provision for his Younger Children," as fit to pass, without any Amendment.
Papers brought in by the E of Nottingham, concerning Naval Affairs, reported from the Committee.
Then the several Heads reported from the Committee (on Saturday last) appointed to consider of the Narrative, Papers, and Letters, brought to this House by the Earl of Nottingham (pursuant to an Address to His Majesty), were read, as followeth:
"But the great Ships did not sail till Mr. Russell came on Board the Fleet; who took his Leave of the Queen the 29th of April, and went to the Fleet in the River on the Third of May, on which Day also the Queen sent him Orders so to do.
"Mr. Russell says, "Had I not sailed the very Moment I did, we had been at this Time at The Buoy of the Nore; but it was done contrary to the Opinion of the Pilots: But I concluded the Occasion required some Hazard, in which, it hath pleased God, I have been very lucky."
"Between Cape de Hague and the Isle of Wight was to be the Rendezvous, whither Sir Ralph Delavall and Rear Admiral Carter were also directed; and Notice was sent to Mr. Russell, that the French Fleet was believed to be at Sea, and the Admiralty was ordered to direct him to sail to that Rendezvous."
"Mr. Russell acknowledges the Receipt of the Orders of the 5th; and says, "That his present Thoughts are, that the most certain Way to have the Fleet join, had been to have had this Squadron anchored off of The Nesse, or Beachy;" but says, "I shall certainly perform what I am commanded."
"Mr. Russell calls a Council of War; who, upon considering the Orders which have been given to Sir Ralph Delavall, for the proceeding with the Squadron under his Command, were of Opinion, That, for the more sure and speedy joining the said Squadron with Their Majesties Ships, they should remain there 48 Hours; and that, if the Wind blow hard Westerly, the Fleet should come to an Anchor off The Nesse; and that, if it blow hard Easterly, they should sail to, and anchor at St. Helens."
"Mr. Russell says, "The Wind blew so extremely hard Easterly while he lay in Rye Bay, that he could not purchase his Anchors till Yesterday; and then the Wind was so strong, that several of the Ships were forced to leave their Anchors behind them."
"Mr. Russell proposes, "that, when the whole Fleet is together, a Detachment of Six or Eight Frigates to attend on the Coast of Normandy; and then that the Soldiers be embarked, and attack St. Malo, while the Fleet lies to the Westward; and afterwards, in case of Success in a Battle, to pursue them even to Brest, taking with him the Land Forces."
"Mr. Russell says, "I cannot advise the sending away (to the Coast of Normandy) any of this Number from the Fleet; but, if the Flag Officers approve thereof, I shall be very free: Nor can I think reasonable to sail with the Fleet to the Westward in Search of the Enemy, unless you can have a certain Account where they are, and that they be within a short Run of us."
"The Council of War agree with Mr. Russell, not to search the French Fleet beyond St. Helens, without certain Advice that they were on the Coast; but to proceed to Cape de Hague, and return to St. Helens: Which Resolution Mr. Russell said he would execute.
"The Queen disapproved this Resolution; and that the whole Naval Power ought not to be employed about Cape de Hague and St. Helens, and that the Noise of a Descent should not frustrate the whole Summer's Service; and therefore ordered him to leave Ships on the Coast of Normandy, and proceed even to Brest, since the French could not get in.
"Mr. Russell gives the Reasons of this Proceeding in his Letter of May 23th, in which he complains of the Queen's Order of the 17th, and gives his Reasons for his going to Cape de Hague; videlicet, "From this Place the Transport was to be made; hither the French Fleet was coming to convoy them, and its appearing on our Coast could be no Danger to England; and says, the Event has justified his Opinion." But,
"Mr. Russell says, "The Enemy left me in the Evening between Five and Six o'Clock, and that I was then in Search of them: The Weather clearing up, I saw most of them under the Shore, between Cape Barfleur and Cape de Hague; the Wind Easterly, and they crowding away to the Westward, and we and the Dutch after them. Some Hours after, the Wind shifted Westerly, they and we plying to Windward upon the Ebb, and they and we anchoring upon the Flood.
"Mr. Russell, in his Relation of the Battle, says, "I sent to all the Ships that I could think were near me, to chase to the Westward all Night; telling them, I designed to follow the Enemy to Brest. And sometimes we could see a French Ship, Two, or Three, standing away with all the Sail they could make to the Westward. About Eight the next Morning, I saw about 32 or 34 Sail, distant from us between Two and Three Leagues, &c."
"Mr. Russell had resolved, at a Council of War, to have gone Westward himself with Fifty Ships to Fornehead, in Hopes to have met the Ships which the Dutch and the Admiral of the Blue lost Sight of; but hearing by a Genoese, that he met Twelve French disabled Ships off of The Start, bound for Brest, he concluded it was in vain to go thither to look after them."
"Resolved, by the Flag Officers, That the Fleet of Sixty Men of War should sail to Ushant as soon as possible, without staying for Landmen, and send some Frigates to see what Ships were in Brest Water, and to act against the Enemy as the Flag Officers judged best.
"Upon Intelligence that a considerable Number of French Ships were got into St. Malo, the Queen ordered him to sail Westward with such Ships as were ready; and if the French Ships were in St. Malo, or upon that Coast, to take or destroy them.
"June 9. 11. 13.
"On the 14.
"Mr. Russell writes, "that he had sent Captain Nevill, with Thirty Ships, to lye Ten Leagues North from the West End of The Isle of Basse, &c. which he thought the best Posture to intercept any Thing that came Eastward or Westward."
"Mr. Russell writes, "that 'twas resolved by Vice Admiral Rook, at a Council of War (while he was on the French Coast), that a Squadron of Ships in the Summer Season may be ventured to lye before St. Malo."
"But on the 25.
"Mr. Russell sends Fifty Ships under Sir John Ashby, as he had before on the 18th sent Thirty under Captain Nevill, to lye Fifteen Leagues North from The Isle of Basse, to prevent the Escape of the Ships from St. Malo.
"And it not being fit for the whole Fleet to anchor before St. Malo, he detaches Vice Admiral Rook to examine the Ground, and get an Account of the Ships at St. Malo; and comes away with the Fleet from Guernsey to The Start.
"June 9. 11.
"Only on the 13.
"But on the 23.
"And July 4.
"He says, "if the Number of Men to be landed did not exceed 12000, they can be of no Use at St. Malo;" and proposes the landing at Le Hogue, to take away the Cannon which the French had fished up; as was afterwards on the 28th of July resolved to be done."
"But on July 10.
"Orders were sent to the Victuallers of the Navy and Commissioners of Transports, to provide Victuals and Shipping for the Men designed for the Descent: And however the News of the French Designs upon England might interrupt the Proceedings, yet, immediately after the Battle, the necessary Orders were reinforced; and particularly,
"July 10. 29.
"June 13. 21.
"June 23. July 4. 11.
"The Designs of the French Descent here interrupted the Preparations that were at first ordered; but no Delay has been occasioned for Want of timely Orders being given or sent away to all Persons whatsoever concerned in the Preparations or Executions of the intended Descent.
"And July 19.
"And July 10.
"The Earl of Nottingham writ to Mr. Russell, to send a List of the Ships he desired to keep for the main Fleet, for Newfoundland, and the Coast of Normandy, that the rest might be employed in cruizing.
These Papers, &c. to be delivered to H. C. at a Conference.
And, after Debate thereupon, it was agreed, that those Heads, and the Letters and Narrative, with a Copy of the Dates of the Queen's Orders, and the Earl of Nottingham's Letters, shall be delivered to the House of Commons, at a Conference; and that, at the Time when they are delivered, the Managers for this House shall say as followeth:
"We, by Command of the House, deliver you these Papers and Letters; because several Persons who are Members of the House of Commons are often mentioned in the said Papers, from whom possibly you may be more particularly informed of the Matters contained in them."
Message to them, for the Conference.
Committee of Privileges.
It is ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That the Lords Committees for Privileges do meet To-morrow, at Four of the Clock in the Afternoon; and do hear all Persons concerned, that were appointed to be heard this Day.
Rob'tus Atkyns, Miles de Balneo, Capitalis Baro de Scaccario, Orator Procerum, declaravit præsens Parliamentum continuandum esse usque in diem Martis, (videlicet,) vicesimum diem instantis Decembris, hora decima Aurora, Dominis sic decernentibus.