Journal of the House of Lords: Volume 16, 1696-1701. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1767-1830.
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DIE Sabbati, 9 Januarii.
De Rhede L. Aghram, & al. Nat. Bill.
Townshend versus Kettle.
Upon reading the Petition of Edward Townshend; praying, "That a Day may be appointed, for hearing the Cause depending in this House, wherein Elizabeth Kettle Widow and Joseph Kettle her Son are Appellants, and the Petitioner Respondent:"
It is ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That this House will hear the said Cause, by Counsel, at the Bar, on Saturday the Three and Twentieth Day of this Instant January, at Ten of the Clock in the Forenoon.
Attainder of Persons in the late Conspiracy, Bill:
The Order being read, for the producing Evidence against the Persons named in the Bill, intituled, "An Act to attaint such of the Persons concerned in the late horrid Conspiracy to assassinate His Majesty's Royal Person, who are fled from Justice, unless they render themselves to Justice; and for continuing several other of the said Conspirators in Custody:"
George Harris, George Porter, James Ewbank, Abraham Sweet, and Richard Fisher, were sworn, at the Bar; and gave Evidence against all the Persons named in the Bill, and also against Robert Blackbourne now Prisoner in Newgate.
Hodie 2a vice lecta est Billa, intituled, "An Act to attaint such of the Persons concerned in the late horrid Conspiracy to assassinate His Majesty's Royal Person, who are fled from Justice, unless they render themselves to Justice; and for continuing several other of the said Conspirators in Custody."
Hodie 3a vice lecta est Billa, intituled, "An Act to attaint such of the Persons concerned in the late horrid Conspiracy to assassinate His Majesty's Royal Person, who are fled from Justice, unless they render themselves to Justice; and for continuing several other of the said Conspirators in Custody."
Message to H. C. with Amendments to it.
Smith to attend.
Harcourt to attend.
Smith to be attached.
It is ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That the Serjeant at Arms attending this House, his Deputy or Deputies, do forthwith attach the Body of the said Mathew Smith, and bring him in safe Custody to this House; and this shall be a sufficient Warrant on that Behalf.
E. Lincoln versus Roll & al.
It is ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That the Cause appointed to be heard on Monday next, wherein the Earl of Lincoln, by Susanna Countess of Lincoln his Mother and Prochein Amy, is Appellant, and Samuel Rolle and others Respondents, shall be heard, by Counsel, at the Bar, on Thursday the Fourteenth Day of this Instant January, at Ten of the Clock in the Forenoon.
Ly. May Fenwick's Pipers: No 1.
"I desire Leave to clear myself of an Aspersion this Honourable House has laid upon me. If they will give me their Assistance, I will lay before them a Way they may come to see the Truth of that Matter, if they will give me the Assurance of the House that nothing that I say shall hurt myself, or make me an Evidence against any body.
I desire that my Lord P. and R. may be asked concerning some Letters and Intelligence that was brought to the King, giving an Account of the Correspondence held here with K. J. by great Men in this Government.
"I desire that the D. of N. may be examined; concerning what Captain S. said to him about the Correspondence held betwixt K. J. and the great Men here in the Government; and if his Grace did not acquaint the King with the same.
"I likewise request it may be humbly desired of the King, that the Letters that come to His Hands from K. J. the Q. and others in France, writ to the Lord G—d—. may be laid before the House; and that my Lord P. and R. may be asked about it.
"Whether it will be a more proper Time to offer to clear himself of the Aspersion to the House before his Trial, or after; if afterwards, then to have a Petition ready to send into the House before the Bill be read a Third Time ?
Paper, No 2.
"2. That, allowing any Part of what I have said upon Hearsay to be false; it may nevertheless be true, that such were the Informations given to me by those that governed (fn. 1) Party.
"3. That, had not Goodman made his Escape, there were others that could (fn. 2) have given positive Accounts of Knowledge, and probably would have done so, concerning what I have said.
"6. That, if this Honourable House expects that I should speak plainly to them, they will let me have positive Assurance, that they will give me their utmost Assistance to make good what I say towards the Discovery of Truth, and not oblige (fn. 1) to speak to no other Purpose but to incense my Enemies of all Parties.
"7. Insist for Ground of Probability, the Manner and Time of Shrewsbury's laying down, and Russell's laying down, when the Three Admirals came in, and the surprizng and sudden coming in of Shrewsbury again, which then could not be voluntary; and what could constrain him, but the King's having some Discovery of his Dealings, by which Means he was in His Power.
"8. That all the Time he mentions the Beginning of this Correspondence, One of the Persons concerned was deprived of all his great Places, and committed to The Tower, for a Reason which must be upon Evidence, and for such Practices as he alledges corresponding with France; he therefore desires the Evidence against Marleborough at that Time may be laid before the House.
"9. He likewise requests it may be humbly desired of the King, that the Letters that have come to His Hands from the late King and Queen, and others in France, intended for the Lord Godolphin, may be laid before the House; and that the Lord Portland and Rumney may have Leave to acquaint the House of what they know in that Matter, as likewise of great Presents sent about that Time to the late Queen into France."
Paper, No 3.
"2. The best and almost certain Way to stop the Bill of Attainder in the House of Lords, is frankly owning and endeavouring to prove there, the Confession made to the King; that is the proper Place for him so to do, and not in the House of Commons, whose Proceedings are not so regular as in the House of Lords: The Party for the Persons mentioned amongst the Peers is not strong, and there Sir John Fenwick may oblige whom he shall think fit to declare their Knowledge upon Oath. This is upon Supposition that Sir John Fenwick can with Truth abide by it; and if so, his Conscience, his Reputation, his Safety, are equally concerned in it.
"3. For, if well considered, his Endeavours to prove that Paper will lose him none of such as pass for Jacobite or Tory, which all of them will naturally oppose the Bill of Attainder: They can none of them be concerned at any Proofs attempted against some of the great Persons mentioned that were in Office; and the others are not touched in their Reputation, being prosessed Jacobites, nor made unsafe, if Sir John resolve to be no Evidence, of which there will be no Necessity if the Bill do not pass; neither are any of the others in Danger for their Lives, were there Proofs of Matters of Fact before the Act of Indemnity.
"4. But an ingenuous Confession (for which there is so much Room by reason of the Discouragement he met with elswhere, which he will not find amongst the Lords, but much the contrary, and where he may insist upon necessary Preliminaries) will inevitably divide, if not altogether sway, the other Party; and the Case is very differing in the Two Houses; some great Lords removed, and great Places emptied, may be supplied by themselves; whereas, in the House of Commons, those Persons put into Place by these great Men, may fear they may want their Support for the Places they already have.
"5. The Bill alledges Prevarication in his Confession, and declares his Paper delivered to the King false and scandalous, and given in for Delay; and the withdrawing of Goodman is mentioned in it, as a Motive to this extraordinary Proceeding.
"6. But, by a Confession and making the Paper good, all that Part of the Bill, all those Insinuations of Prevarications of the Falsehood and Scandal of the Paper vanish, or at least will not pass de bene esse; as likewise the Pretence of Delay, and his Confession formerly: And avowing it now amounts almost to a Demonstration that he did not contribute to the removing Goodman; for he depended upon his Confession to save his Life, and after that Step it were ridiculous in him to think of any other Way.
Dutchess of Norff. Ly. M. Fenwick, & al. Examinations read.
E. of Monmouth heard:
Papers delivered by Ly. M. Fenwick, voted scandadalous, &c.
"Resolved, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That those Three Papers, which were delivered into this House by the Lady Mary Fenwick, do contain in them Matter of a scandalous Nature; and that the Contrivance of them is a high Crime and Misdemeanor."