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 Veneris, 9 Maii.
Message to H. C. with it.
Disbrowe versus Kerin & al.
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 Friday the Three and Twentieth of this Instant May, at Eleven a Clock.
Ly. Bulkley's Bill.
Hodie 2a vice lecta est Billa, intituled, "An Act to enable the Right Honourable Elizabeth Lady Bulkley to sell certain Lands, in the County of Devon, and City and County of the City of Exon, for Payment of Debts."
Their Lordships, or any Five of them; to meet on Saturday the Four and Twentieth Day of this Instant May, at Ten of the Clock in the Forenoon, in the Prince's Lodgings near the House of Peers; and to adjourn as they please.
Debts, for more easy Recovery of, Bill.
Message from H. C. with Articles of Impeachment against the E. of Orford.
With the Articles of Impeachment against Edward Earl of Orford; and to acquaint this House, "That the Matter of the Charge was contained in the Articles;" and also, "That he was commanded to pray and demand, that the Earl of Orford do give sufficient Security to abide the Judgement of the House of Lords."
Committee to consider of the Method of delivering them, and demanding Security for him to abide Judgement.
Lords Committees appointed to consider of the Manner of the Commons delivering Articles of Impeachment, and demanding Security to abide the Judgement of this House; and report to the House; (videlicet,)
And the Earl of Stamford reported, "That the Committee had met, and inspected the Journals; that they do not find any Mention of the Commons reading the Articles at the Bar; and as for giving Security, they find none."
Articles against E. of Orford.
"Articles exhibited by the Knights, Citizens, and Burgesses, in Parliament assembled, in the Name of themselves and of all the Commons of England, against Edward Earl of Orford, in Maintenance of their Impeachment against him for high Crimes and Misdemeanors.
"1. That whereas, for many Years past, there hath been a long and expensive War, both by Sea and Land, carried on by His Majesty and His Allies, against the French King, for the preserving the Balance of Europe, and for preventing the Growth of the immoderate Power of the said French King; towards the Prosecution of which War, great Sums of Money have been given and levied by Authority of Parliament, and many Debts have been contracted, which remain a very heavy Burthen upon the People of England; the said Earl, being then of His Majesty's most Honourable Privy Council, but always preferring his private Interest to the Good of the Public, and taking Advantage of the ready Access he had to His Majesty's Person, during the Continuance of the said War, in Violation of his Duty and Trust, hath procured from His Majesty One or more Grant or Grants, of several Manors, Messuages, Lands, Tenements, and Hereditaments, within the Kingdoms of England or Ireland, or elsewhere within His Majesty's Dominions, of a great Yearly Value, and also of exorbitant Sums of Money, to be made to him, or others in Trust for him, but to his Use, the Profits whereof he now enjoys; whereby the standing Revenues of the Crown of England, which ought to be applied to the Service of the Public, are greatly diminished, and the People of England thereby burthened with Debts, and subjected to grievous Taxes.
"2. That, in Breach of the Trust reposed in him, whilst he was Commander in Chief of the Navy Royal of England, in or near The Streights of Gibralter, and within the Time aforesaid, he the said Earl did receive great Sums of the Public Money, issued out to him for the Service of the Navy, which he hath converted to his own private Use, and unlawfully and unjustly procured a Privy Seal or Privy Seals to discharge him from accompting to the Public for the same; and also hath received other great Sums of Money from His Majesty's Exchequer, as Paymaster or Receiver General of the Navy, without giving a due and legal Accompt thereof; whereby he hath occasioned great Clamours and Discontents among the Seamen and others belonging to His Majesty's Navy, who are thereby reduced to great Miseries and Necessities, for Want of their just Dues, to the great Discouragement and Discredit of the Public Service.
"3. That he the said Earl, while he was in several Ports belonging to the King of Spain's Dominions, did receive, from the said King of Spain and others, considerable Sums of Money, and great Quantities of Wine, Oil, and other Provisions for the Fleet, to a very great Value, for all which he ought to have accompted; but the said Earl did convert the same to his own Use, and did either embezzle those Provisions, or reckoned them as bought with the Money allowed for furnishing the Navy with fresh Provisions; and that, for the advancing his own private Interest, and securing himself from rendering any Accompt to the Public, he the said Earl, during the said War, procured, enjoyed, and possessed, divers great Offices, which were inconsistent, and in their Nature improper to be executed by one and the same Person, and which ought to be, and by the Laws and Usages of this Realm were and are appointed and designed, as Checks one upon the other, in Breach of the said Laws, to the Dishonour of His Majesty, and Prejudice of His People.
"4. That he the said Earl, within the Time aforesaid, hath clandestinely, contrary to the Law of Nations, sold and disposed of several Vessels, with their Ladings and Cargo, taken, under Pretence of Prize, by His Majesty's Ships of War, without Condemnation or Judicial Proceedings, and converted the Money to his own Use; well knowing, if they had been condemned, as by Law they ought to have been, One Tenth (after Customs allowed) and One Third Part of the Value thereof, the Customs and the said Tenth being deducted, are, by Act of Parliament, appropriated to especial Uses; by which Proceedings, the Public has been greatly endamaged and defrauded, and the Debts of the Nation increased.
"5. And whereas Complaints were made to the Commissioners for executing the Office of Lord High Admiral of England (where the said Earl at that Time presided), by the Company trading to The East Indies, of divers Piracies committed in the South East Seas, to the Destruction of their Trade, desiring they might have Letters of Marque granted to them, whereby to be empowered (though at their own Charge) to suppress such Pirates: But the said Earl, preferring his own Interest, discouraged and rejected their Request and Proposal; and in some short Time after, jointly with others, did procure a Commission for one William Kidd; as likewise a Grant under the Great Seal of England, to and for the Use of him the said Earl and others, of the Ships and Goods of certain Persons therein named, and also of all Goods found on Board the said Ships: And the said Company, having Intimation of a Commission granted to the said Kidd, being apprehensive of the ill Consequences of the same, did apply themselves to the said Board of Admiralty, desiring to know what Powers and Instructions were given; but such their reasonable Request was denied; and Kidd, who was known to be a Person of ill Fame and Reputation, ordered to pursue the intended Voyage, in which he did commit divers Piracies and Depredations on the High Seas, being thereto encouraged through the Hopes of being protected by the high Station and Interest of the said Earl, in Violation of the Law of Nations, and the Interruption and Discouragement of the Trade of England.
"6. That the said Earl, within the Time aforesaid, when an horrid Conspiracy was discovered against His Majesty's Sacred Person, and the Kingdom was under an Apprehension of an immediate Invasion from France, and divers Ships of War (particularly the Ship Dutchesse) were armed out, equipped, and manned, in Defence of the Realm, to oppose the intended Invasion, did his utmost Endeavour to prejudice and weaken the Navy Royal of England; for that he the said Earl, by Colour of his Office (being then First Commissioner for executing the Office of Lord High Admiral of England), without the Privity of the other Commissioners, contrary to his Oath and Duty, and preferring his Hopes of Gain to himself to the Safety of the Public, did order Captain Steward, Commander of the Ship Dutchess, to deliver over, and put on Board the said Kidd, mentioned in the foregoing Article, out of the said Ship The Dutchess, a great Number of able Seamen, levied and provided at the Expence of the Public, and then discharging their Duty in Defence of their Country, and against their own Consent, to the Prejudice of the public Security, and to the endangering of the said Ship The Dutchesse, if it had been attacked by the Enemy.
"7. That the said Earl, during the said War; and at a Time of the greatest Exigency and Necessity, when Ships, Men, and Money were wanting, to guard the Seas and protect our Trade, did, by Misrepresentations, and contrary to his bounden Duty and the Trust reposed in him, procure a Grant or Order for His Majesty's Ship The Dolphin; then fitted out, manned, and equipped for the Service of the Public, to be employed in a private Voyage and Undertaking, for the Advantage of himself and others concerned with him; in Pursuance whereof, and for their private Gain; the said Ship was, at the public Expence, continued in Foreign Parts for several Months, to the Destruction and Loss of His Majesty's Subjects on Board the same, to the weakening the Navy, by rendering the said Ship unserviceable, and the increasing the Debts of the Public.
"8. That the said Earl, during the Time of his commanding the Navy Royal of England, did, through Neglect and in Contempt of Orders, unnecessarily hazard and expose to imminent Danger the said Navy; and that, during the Time aforesaid, having had many Opportunities of taking or destroying the Ships belonging to the French King, the said Earl, contrary to Advice, in Disobedience to Orders, and in Neglect of his Duty, did suffer and permit the said Ships to return safe into their own Harbours.
"9. That the said Earl, well knowing our Sovereign Lord the King to have been engaged in several Alliances with the Emperor of Germany and other Princes and States, particularly in a Treaty concluded with His Imperial Majesty, in the Year of our Lord One Thousand Six Hundred Eighty-nine; the End and Intention of all which Leagues and Treaties were, to prevent the Growth of the Power of the French King, and to secure England, and the antient Allies of England, against the same; did notwithstanding, in Concert with other false and evil Counsellors, advise our said Sovereign Lord the King, in the Year One Thousand Six Hundred Ninety-eight, to enter into One Treaty for dividing the Monarchy and Dominions of Spain; in Pursuance whereof, in the Year One Thousand Six Hundred Ninety-nine, One other Treaty was entered into to the like Purpose, by which Treaties great Injustice was done to the Emperor, an antient Ally of our said Sovereign Lord the King; and a large Part of the said Spanish Dominions were to be added to the Crown of France; both which Treaties were prejudicial to the Interest of the Protestant Religion all over Europe, ruinous to the Trade of England, and dishonourable to our Sovereign Lord the King, and the People of these Kingdoms. All which Crimes and Misdemeanors were committed and done by him the said Earl against our Sovereign Lord the King, His Crown and Dignity, the Peace and Interest of this Kingdom, and in Breach of the several Trusts reposed in him the said Earl.
"10. And he the said Earl of Orford was One of the Lords Justices during His Majesty's Absence beyond the Seas, the First Commissioner for executing the Office of Lord High Admiral of England, Commander in Chief of His Majesty's Navy Royal, One of His Majesty's Privy Council, and Treasurer of His Majesty's Navy, or in some or One of the said Stations, during the Time that all and every the Crimes before set forth were done and committed.
"That the said Commons, by Protestation, saving to themselves the Liberty of exhibiting at any Time hereafter any other Accusation or Impeachment against the said Earl; and also of replying to his Answers, or to any of them, and of offering Proofs to all the said Premises, or any of them, or any other Impeachment or Accusation that shall be exhibited by them, as the Case shall according to the Course of Parliament require; do pray and demand that the said Earl may be put to answer for all and every of the Premises; and that such Proceedings, Examinations, Trials, and Judgements, may be upon every of them had and used, as is agreeable to Law and Justice."
E. Orford to have Copy of Articles.
Message to H. C. that there is no Precedent of a Peer giving Security to abide Judgement upon an Impeachment for Misdemeanors.
To acquaint them, "That, upon Search of the Journals of this House, they do not find any Precedent of Security given to abide the Judgement of this House by any Peer, upon an Impeachment for high Crimes and Misdemeanors."
Mr. Stanhope's Letter to Secretary Hedges.
"The Conference I told you in my last The States Deputies had invited me to, for next Morning, was, to acquaint me in Form, with the Comte d'Avaux's last Memorial, a Copy whereof I then also sent you, and to consider what was fit to be done next. I answered, "That was wholly their Business, and not properly mine, farther than to serve them, as I should be always ready to do; for as to all Affairs of the King my Master, I was as much excluded from the Conferences by this Memorial, as by Monsieur d'Avaux's former Answer, and desired it might be read before them." They were all of the same Opinion. I proposed then, "That it would be convenient to be informed, whether Monsieur d'Avaux understood it in the same Manner;" which they approved; and considering of the Manner, it was agreed, the only proper Way for them was, to demand a Conference with him. To that the Pensionary objected, "That having had already One Conference without me, if they should have another, it might give Occasion to some ill-minded People to blow it abroad, as if The States were treating something for their own particular Interests, separate from those of England." I easily obviated that, by saying, "That as I had represented to His Majesty their former Conference in quite different Colours, as a Product of their great Respect and Veneration of His Majesty, that they would not expose his Minister to Monsieur d'Avaux's Caprices, till they knew from himself how he should be received; and the Conference now proposed would be justified by the same Reasons, since it was designed only for a further clearing of the same Point, as I engaged to inform you that it was." Being satisfied with this, they resolved on a Conference; and after having had it at Five in the Evening Yesterday, they desired me to meet their Deputies this Morning at Eleven, and delivered me the enclosed Copy of their Resolution, which was the Substance of the Conference on their Part. Monsieur d'Avaux's Answer was, "He had no Orders to admit me at the Conference with them on any other Terms; but that, upon their repeated Instances, he would write again to the King his Master, for a farther Eclaircissement, though he believed nothing would be altered." I found them in great Apprehensions of some sudden Invasion from the French, by fresh Advices from Flanders, of extraordinary Motions of their Troops there, and Letters writ to the Governors of all the Towns, not to be opened till such a Day; and then immediately executed all on the same Day, more Forces coming into the Country, and Transports of prodigious Quantities of Cannon, Mortars, Bombs, Ammunition, from several Parts, towards their Frontiers; and for these Reasons they resolved to write this Post to Monsieur Gueldermalsen, to move His Majesty again for the Succours they expect from England; and desired me to do the same, as I perform, by letting you know it."
States General's Letter to the King.
"Since the Protestation we made to Your Majesty in our last Letter of the 23th April, not to enter into any Negotlation with France, but in Concert with England; we have judged it proper to ask Count d'Avaux, Ambaslador Extraordinary from His most Christian Majesty, if he was inclined and authorized to enter again upon the Negotiation, in the Manner it was begun, jointly with the Minister of Your Majesty, as Your Majesty will see by our Resolution of the 2d of this Month, here enclosed. Count d'Avaux, having sent it to His most Christian Majesty, after the Return of his Express, presented a Memorial, of which we likewise add a Copy to this Letter. We immediately communicated it to Mr. Stanhope, Your Majesty's Envoy Extraordinary; and after having consulted with him about it, we found some Things obscure in the said Memorial, which made us doubt of the true Meaning of it; therefore we thought it necessary to acquaint the said Count d'Avaux with the Letter we had the Honour to write to Your Majesty the 23d April last past; and that we were engaged not to take any Measures in the Negotiations but in Concert with Your Majesty. Count d'Avaux made Answer to our Deputies, "That he was come hither to treat about the Means of preserving the general Peace, and establishing our particular Safety; that, if we would concert thereupon with Your Majesty, he had nothing to object against it; and that he was content that Your Majesty's Envoy should assist at the Conferences which are to be held upon that Subject; but that he was not at all authorized to enter into Negotiation with him about the Concerns of England, which were to be treated elsewhere." To which, our Deputies represented, that in the Preservation of the general Peace, in which Your Majesty is equally concerned with us, our Safety could no Way be separated from that of England; that the Interest therein was common to both the Two Nations; and that, in the present Negotiation, Your Majesty could not, without doing You Wrong, be looked upon otherwise than as a principal Party, as well as we." But, notwithstanding the many Instances, and all the Reasons our Deputies could. alledge, Count d'Avaux persisted in his aforesaid Answer, saying, "That he had no other Orders; that he would send our Resolution (of which Your Majesty will find herewith a Copy) to the Court of France," without giving the least Hopes of receiving an Answer agreeable to our Sense of Matters. Upon the Report which was made to us of this Matter, we judged by this Means the Interests of England would be separated from those of our Republic, whereas we think them inseparable; and since it is evident that they are so, we could draw no other Conclusion from this Proceeding, than that France had a Mind to put an End to these Conferences, and to grant none of the Securities demanded, and which are so necessary for the Preservation of Your Majesty's Kingdoms and of our State. We are obliged to make all this known to Your Majesty; and do again protest, That, our Interests being the same with those of Your Majesty in this present Negotiation, and not to be separated one from the other, we will not suffer them by any Means to be divided. At the same Time, Sir, we cannot but represent to Your Majesty the great Need we have of being assisted without Loss of Time, if we will prevent the Ruin that threatens us, and the evident Danger we are in. Your Majesty knows perfectly well the State of our Affairs; and will easily judge if it is possible, in the Condition we are, to resist the Forces of France, so much superior to ours; which was the Reason of our earnest Request to Your Majesty, to perform the Treaty made, with the Approbation of the Parliament, in the Year 1678, between King Charles the Second (of Glorious Memory) and this State. We do now repeat our most pressing Instances, that we may have speedily the Succours stipulated, and the entire Effect of the said Treaty. We hope Your Majesty will seriously consider the State we are in, especially after the positive Assurances Your Majesty has given us, that your Parliament had resolved to interest themselves with Vigour for our Preservation, and to assist us in our present Necessity, by furnishing the Succours agreed on. We will acquaint Your Majesty with the Posture France puts itself in; and Your Majesty will thereby judge, whether our Fear, which anunates our Demands, is ill grounded. France, not being satisfied with having taken Possession of all the Places that belonged to Spain in The Netherlands, does daily put into them, and causes actually to march thither, very formidable Forces. They are drawing a Line from The Schelde near Antwerp, to The Maes; and beginning another Line, as we are informed, from Antwerp to Ostend. They send to the Places which are nearest to our Frontiers, a very great Number of Cannon; they erect with all Diligence a great many Magazines, in Flanders, Brabant, Geldres, and at Namur, which they fill with all Sorts of Ammunition and Provisions for War, besides the vast Quantities of Forage they lay up every where. They build Forts under the Cannon of our Towns; moreover, they have endeavoured, and do still endeavour without ceasing, to separate the Princes our Friends from our Interest, and to engage them in their Alliance, or at least to a Neutrality. In fine, our Friends are made useless to us by the Intrigues and Divisions in the Empire, and those of France augmented; so that we are surrounded on all Sides, except by Sea. You see, Sir, without any Disguise, the true State and Condition to which we are reduced, without the Addition of any Thing but what is Matter of Fact. This makes us hope, that, as Your Majesty knows perfectly well our Affairs, You will agree with us, that our Condition at present is worse than it was during the last War, and worse than if we were actually in War, since they build Forts under the Cannon of our strong Places, and make Lines along our Frontiers; and that we cannot hinder them, as we could do if we were in War. These Reasons oblige us to put ourselves into a defensive Condition, more than if we were actually attacked; to put our Country under Water, and even to cut our Dykes, to secure our Frontiers. We find ourselves forced to make Use of these Means, and whatever else we could have done in an open War; insomuch that our Subjects suffer already more than they did in the last War. Hitherto the Winter has been some Sort of a small Security to us; that Season is now past, and we do expect every Moment to be invaded and overrun, unless we are speedily succoured. We do promise it ourselves from You, Sir; especially since it hath pleased Your Majesty to assure us, that Your Parliament had taken favourable Resolutions in our Behalf. And as our Necessity is very pressing, so we beseech Your Majesty to consider well the Extremity we are in, and the Impossibility we are under of avoiding the total Ruin and Overthrow of our State, if we are left in this Condition. Sir, we believe the Interest of England so closely united to ours, that we will expose ourselves to all Events, rather than suffer them to be separated, or to take any other Measures than in Concert with Your Majesty. It is very needless to represent to Your Majesty, that the Preservation of Your own Kingdoms should engage You to prevent our Ruin, seeing we think their Loss is inseparable from ours. The Reasons, Sir, are better known to You than to us; as well as the fatal Consequences they will be exposed to, in leaving us in this Condition; which persuades us, that, by Your Majesty's great Prudence, and the good Intentions of Your Parliament, You will direct all Things so as to let Europe see, that nothing is more conducing to its Safety than the Alliances with England, and Your Friendship for us. We expect without Delay the Succours and the Performance of the afore-mentioned Treaty; and pray to GOD,
States General's Letter to be printed.
It is ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That the Translation of The States Generall's Letter to His Majesty, the 13th of May, 1701, read this Day in the House, shall be forthwith printed and published.
It is ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That To-morrow, at Eleven of the Clock, this House will take into Consideration the Translation of The States Generall's Letter to His Majesty, the 13th May, 1701, read this Day in the House; and all the Lords summoned.
Penn's Petition and Papers.
Upon reading the Petition of William Penn Esquire, in Behalf of his Father, now absent in Pensilvania; shewing, "That he, having Recourse to the Papers laid before this House from the Commissioners of the Admiralty; Plantations, and Customs, perceives several Papers are not laid before this House, which were sent to the said Commissioners, and are for the Advantage of his Father:"
It is ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That the Commissioners for executing the Office of Lord High Admiral of England, the Commissioners of the Customs, and Commissioners of Trade, do lay before this House all the Papers that may any Way concern Mr. Penn's Father, To-morrow at Eleven a Clock.
Hancock & al. versus Sir Arthur Shaen.
The House being moved, "That the following Words may be added to the Judgement of this House, in the Cause of the Earl of Kildare and Sir Arthur Shaen; and of Hancock and Hatfield against the said Sir Arthur; (videlicet,)
["That John Hancock and Leonard Hatfield do for Security, bring the Arrears and all future Rents (according as they have sworn their Value in their Answers) into Court, until the Cause be determined:"]
Heron versus Sir Arthur Shaen.
Upon reading the Petition of Mary Heron; shewing, "That Sir Arthur Shaen insisted on the Protection of this House, in respect of an Appeal he had depending there; and praying Leave that she may proceed against him, for Recovery of just Debts:"